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Statement from Team Mayweather/Golden Boy Promotions

PRESS RELEASE: After a Christmas weekend filled with comments and reports related to the potential mega-fight between Floyd Mayweather and Manny Pacquiao, Mayweather Promotions and Golden Boy Promotions have issued the following statement:

Let the record be clear: Manny Pacquiao and his promoter Bob Arum are threatening to walk away from the largest fight in history. The fact is that random blood and urine testing was one of the many deal points and was listed along with the others, such as the financial split, the weight, financial penalty for being overweight, the appointment of the foreign sales agent, the production of the marketing assets, the gloves and many more. Team Mayweather made major concessions in many of these areas and we were optimistic that Team Pacquiao would do the same as it related to the request for random blood and urine testing, which Floyd Mayweather agreed to immediately.

It is disappointing for us to see that the benefits of blood testing and the fact that many different substances and procedures can only be detected by blood testing, are still not fully understood by all.

Their “take it or leave it” approach where blood testing would stop 30 days prior to the fight unless the Nevada State Athletic Commission (NSAC) approved differently is another indication that they may not want this fight. Pacquiao’s position (and as stated on his website) is. “The truth is taking blood out of my body does not seem natural to me and mentally I feel it will weaken me if blood is taken from me just days before the fight” or he is “afraid of needles” and does not feel comfortable with blood being taken closer than 30 days before the fight is another interesting point. The fact is that he did have blood taken just 14 days prior to his fight with Ricky Hatton, an event which was documented on HBO’s 24/7 reality show.

Also when told that Pacquiao feels that the United States Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) is an agent of Golden Boy Promotions-which is in and of itself a ridiculous accusation-we moved swiftly and made yet another concession by stating that we would be perfectly fine to retain another agency which would do the random urine and blood tests and jointly agree on a reasonable cutoff prior to the fight but which would still maintain the integrity of the results. Let it be clear that this procedure was declined by Pacquiao as was the proposal to bring in an independent mediator such as Sen. John McCain, a suggestion that was in fact embraced by Bob Arum, but also declined by Manny Pacquiao.

Let it be very clear that nobody from Team Mayweather or Golden Boy Promotions is accusing Pacquiao of anything. But the reality seems to be that for whatever reason Pacquiao does not want to participate in random blood testing, which has already been deemed a harmless procedure that many current athletes are subjected to prior to and during competition.

Team Mayweather and Golden Boy Promotions is still open to the earlier discussions of having both parties work out a mutually agreeable understanding of the testing, which would be conducted by a mutually agreed upon agency.

In closing Floyd Mayweather is one of the most decorated athletes boxing has ever seen and he is anxious to make this fight happen for all of the fans and sports enthusiasts that are asking for this fight to happen too. As you might have noticed Floyd has been silently watching and patiently waiting for the final details of the fight to get worked out. As Floyd has already stated he does not have a problem with the random procedure and will be under the same requirements as Pacquiao, it is simply hard for him to understand why there is reluctance on Pacquiao’s part to agree to do the same.

Pacquiao vs. Malignaggi on the horizon? Has The Magic Man altered his tone as a result?

Following the death of the Mayweather vs. Pacquiao super fight, Pacquiao's promoter Bob Arum of Top Rank made it clear that they would consider former IBF junior welterweight champion Paulie Malignaggi as Pacquiao's next opponent. As you are all well aware, Malignaggi has been rather verbal and open-minded regarding his belief that there is evidence suggesting that Pacquiao is committing foul play.

Back in November you may recall that Malignaggi was quoted Fighthype.com as making his case to Onthegrindboxing, "There's something fishy about Manny Pacquiao, man, for a lot of reasons...if the situation is what I think it is, God, Manny Pacquiao will not lose to any of these welterweights. It's unfortunate. The level of drug testing in boxing is not really that deep. I mean, we have urine tests on the day of the fight and we don't have much else... there's things that don't come up in drug tests. There's ways to beat drug tests."

Upon realizing that his name has suddenly been tossed into the Pacquiao sweepstakes, Malignaggi seems to have conveniently taken a slight change of tone. In an interview with Boxingtalk's Greg Leon that was published today, Malignaggi admitted, "I gave my opinion, it's my opinion and I feel the same way. That being said, I have full confidence in the drug testing procedures of the Nevada Commission and that they will conduct the proper testing. At the end of the day, they were my observations and my opinions. Let's keep in mind that Manny Pacquiao has never failed a drug test. But there are certain things I have observed him that have led me to my opinions."

How have we gone from drug testing not being that deep in boxing, to a commission that administers proper testing and instills confidence? The testing of the Nevada commission did not change over night Mr. Malignaggi. The same commission that you are suddenly expressing your confidence in is the one in which Pacquiao has passed a total of ten drug tests. When one's name is thrown into the dynamic equation for what could be a career high pay day, it is fascinating but also understandable to see just how ones tone or point of view can take a different shape.

Nonetheless, Pacquiao has agreed to submit to blood testing if necessary, but one can also see Pacquiao’s point in not wanting to concede total control of drug testing demands to Floyd Mayweather Jr and his team. Malignaggi believes he has a style to beat Pacquiao, stating that Pacquiao has never been in the ring with a fighter that possesses his style of fight.

Going from Juan Diaz to Manny Pacquiao, pound for pound the best fighter in the world, is like going from a rain puddle to the ocean in terms of the dramatic step up in class that The Magic Man would be taking. More power to Malignaggi if he's able to secure the opportunity and substantial payday to meet the pride of the Philippines inside the squared circle.

photo courtesy: John Booz / Fightwireimages.com

Is Pacquiao trying to hide something, or does Team Mayweather truly believe they're riding some mythical high horse above and beyond any boxing commission?

Hopefully everyone had a nice Christmas weekend and enjoyed precious time with their families and friends. Over the weekend, it appears as though the much anticipated Mayweather vs. Pacquiao mega fight completely died and fell through the cracks. Pacquiao has simply refused to comply with Team Mayweather's request of subjecting himself to Olympic style drug testing, which would include random blood testing, administered by the United States Anti-Doping Agency (USADA).

Pacquiao did in fact agree to take three blood tests. One blood test prior to his training camp. One blood test thirty days prior to the bout. One blood test immediately following the fight in his locker room. One would think that would be enough to satisfy Team Mayweather, but that simply was not the case nor will it ever be. Drug testing with the USADA is a non-negotiable stance that is being taken by Team Mayweather. Last week on The Huge Show, Mayweather's advisor and confidant Leonard Ellerbe once again confirmed that they had no intentions of backing down from their random blood testing request. "It wasn't Floyd at all. I have the responsibility to put him in the best situation to be successful," Ellerbe said. "I'm not making any accusations or allegations when it comes to Manny Pacquiao but this is something we're putting in place. We feel the fans and the sport deserve a level playing field."

Last Wednesday, Pacquiao's promoter Bob Arum of Top Rank gave Mayweather twenty four hours to renege on their stance, but come Christmas Eve the holiday cheer did nothing to sway the hearts and minds of the pugnacious Mayweather clan. As a result the proposed fight in the squared circle is now officially off, but there will surely be another type of battle taking place.....in the courtroom. Pacquiao openly stated that he is suing Floyd Mayweather Jr, Floyd Mayweather Sr, Golden Boy Promotions, and their entire team on the grounds of defamation.

The day after Christmas, Pacquiao was quoted as saying in article by ESPN's Dan Rafael, "I have instructed my promoter, Bob Arum, head of Top Rank Inc., to help me out in the filing of the case as soon as possible because I have had people coming over to me now asking if I really take performance-enhancing drugs and [if] I have cheated my way into becoming the No. 1 boxer in the world." For weeks, Mayweather's father Floyd Sr. had been saying that he wants Pacquiao to give blood. One of Floyd's uncles Jeff Mayweather has also publicly stated that Pacquiao could be taking illegal performance enhancing drugs.

Do Golden Boy Promotions and Team Mayweather truly believe that they are bigger than the Nevada State Athletic Commission (NSAC), feeling as though they can call the shots when it comes to drug testing procedures??? A request for blood testing is one thing, but making demands as to which testing agency is going to be administering those tests is a completely different story. Keep in mind, fight fans, that Mayweather vs. Pacquiao was slated to be a world championship fight for the WBO welterweight championship, with key emphasis on the term world.

Why should Pacquiao be required to submit himself to random blood tests with the USADA, the same agency that governed Mayweather's 1996 Olympic Championship triumph [Mayweather emerged as a silver medal winner]? Why not conduct the testing through a more neutral agency in Europe or any other place throughout the world? Following what appeared to be fair and balanced negotiations of a 50-50 purse split, eight ounce gloves, and fighting weight of 147lbs, it remains a little bit odd that Team Mayweather would go public with a demand that blatantly swinging in their favor. Was this indeed a pre-meditated evacuation strategy on behalf of Team Mayweather to pull out of the fight? This reopens a big question that was asked in an article that was posted at Boxingchronicles.com earlier this year. That question asked, will Floyd Mayweather Jr avoid Manny Pacquiao when the time comes? When you look at the situation that way, it almost comes as no surprise that the 50-50 purse split was so unbelievably easy to negotiate.

Hypocrisy in the drug testing fiasco has clearly surfaced on behalf of Golden Boy Promotions, the company that was representing Mayweather throughout the weeks of negotiations for the super fight. Golden Boy has also stood firm in their case that Pacquiao should comply with the random drug testing request. However, when former undisputed welterweight champion Zab Judah demanded that Shane Mosley, a fighter of the Golden Boy stable, commit to testing for performance enhancing drugs prior to their proposed May 2008 bout (which inevitably fell through due to an injury sustained by Judah), Golden Boy immediately rejected Judah's request. Therefore, who are they to demand that Pacquiao must go above and beyond the standards of the NSAC in order to make this fight happen???

My take as a commentator is this: If the drug testing was a major concern leading up to the finalization of the bout, logic says that these details would have and should have been ironed out during the negotiations, away from the media, before the fight was set for March 13 at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas. You do not come out publicly about something like that, after the fight has already been set. Both sides agreed beforehand that this fight would be privately negotiated away from the media and the newspapers; it was Team Mayweather that went public and broke that agreement. If Pacquiao is going to agree to random blood testing, which is above and beyond the demands of the NSAC or any commission in the country for that matter, he should at least be granted the opportunity to do so at a neutral testing agency, not the agency that governed Mayweather's USA Olympic trials.

Boxingchronicles.com has posted an exclusive poll question, asking you who you think the grinch was that stole the Mayweather vs. Pacquiao fight. There have been differing opinions regarding this matter, so feel free to comment and cast your vote! You may also email me at boxingchronicles@yahoo.com if you wish to opine.

Bob Arum: Pacquiao vs. Mayweather is OFF!

Pound for pound king Manny Pacquiao's promoter, Bob Arum of Top Rank, has notified the BBC that Mayweather vs. Pacquiao is off.  Pacquiao has refused to agree to random blood testing conducted by the United States Anti-Doping Agency (USADA). 

Earlier this week, Arum conceded that Pacquiao would be willing to test with the agencies that administer the drug testing for professional football and baseball players, but not the USADA.  The potentially richest fight in the history of the sport has fallen apart at the seams. 

Not over purse splits.  Not over the venue.  Not over the fighting weight.  Not over the glove size.  Drug testing.  Can you believe it??  Sad news for the sport of boxing.  More to come.  Stay tuned.

Timothy Bradley willing to step in against either Pacquiao or Mayweather!

“I’ll take any random test requested -- blood, urine, even the SATs.  My name is Timothy Bradley, not Milton Bradley and I'm not playing games. I'm ready to fight in March, April or May next year.”

Is there anybody that undefeated WBO super lightweight champion Timothy Bradley will not fight???  This young man is establishing a very nice resume for himself and he's doing it quietly.  No trash talk and no need for him to vilify himself.  In his last few fights, he's beaten Junior Witter for the WBC title, Edner Cherry, Kendall Holt for the WBO strap, fought Nate Campbell to a no-contest in a fight he was winning, and he just defeated Lamont Peterson by a wide unanimous decision a couple of weeks ago. 

Now he's made it clear that he wants Pacquiao or Mayweather in the event that their mega fight falls through.  You have to admire a guy like this.  With that kind of track record and determination, Mr. Bradley will soon find himself ranked amongst the top pound for pound fighters in the world.

PRESS RELEASE: Undefeated World Boxing Organization junior welterweight champion TIMOTHY “Desert Storm” BRADLEY is ready to enlist in a war against Floyd Mayweather Jr. or Manny Pacquiao should their fight against each other fall through.

“Timothy is happy to defend his world title or move up to welterweight to challenge Pacquiao or Mayweather should their fight fall through,” stated Gary Shaw, Bradley’s co-promoter with Thompson Boxing Promotions. “There isn’t an active world champion who has been seen more on premium TV than Timothy. Since the day he won his first world title he has proven he is the goods. The shellacking he gave undefeated interim champion Lamont Peterson earlier this month proved Timothy is one of boxing’s elite fighters and a Top-10 pound for pounder. He’s ready, willing and able to fill the breach.”

“I’ll take any random test requested -- blood, urine, even the SATs,” said Bradley. "My name is Timothy Bradley, not Milton Bradley and I'm not playing games. I'm ready to fight in March, April or May next year.”

Bradley (25-0, 11 KOs), from Palm Springs, Calif., captured the World Boxing Council (WBC) super lightweight in 2008, dethroning defending champion Junior Witter in England. After successfully defending his title against Edner Cherry later that year, Bradley unified the title by winning a unanimous decision over World Boxing Organization junior welterweight champion last April. Bradley’s most recent victory was also his most impressive, taking the undefeated WBO interim champion Peterson to school, winning a dominant 12-round unanimous decision with scores of 120-107, 119-108 and 118-110, which included Peterson hitting the canvas for the first time in his 28-bout professional career.

Boxingchronicles.com 2009 - Fight of the Year!

Boxingchronicles.com has submitted its award for Fight of the Year.  Believe me, it was a tough contest with some of the great fights such as Williams vs. Martinez and Marquez vs. Diaz that have taken place this year.  However, the award goes to a fight that was not even televised in the United States.

The winner is...

BERNARD DUNNE TKO11 RICARDO CORDOBA
WBA SUPER BANTAMWEIGHT CHAMPIONSHIP

March 21, 2009 - The O2, Dublin, Ireland

In what was a knockdown drag out, the challenger Bernard Dunne dropped defending champion Ricardo Cordoba in the 3rd round, only to be dropped twice himself in the 5th round.  Dunne showed a lot of heart and determination, taking tremendous punishment to come back and drop Cordoba three times in the 11th round to seize the title.  At the time of the stoppage, Dunne was trailing on all three scorecards by scores of 92-95, 91-96, and 90-97.  Great come from behind stoppage in a dramatic, action-packed title fight.

Dunne went on to lose his title in his first title defense against Poonsawat Kratingdaenggym this past September.  Kratingdaenggym stopped Dunne in three rounds to win the title.

STAY TUNED FOR THE UPSET OF THE YEAR AWARD COMING VERY SOON!

Drug testing controversy for Mayweather vs. Pacquiao: The latest in a tiring saga of smoke and mirrors?

Negotiations and demands for the proposed March 13 Mayweather vs. Pacquiao mega fight are beginning to leave me almost as dazed as this country's unending Healthcare Reform in currently unfolding in Washington. The process is ongoing, but a question mark remains as to whether or not the fight will actually happen.

The latest obstacle in the proceedings, which may very well be a deal breaker, is the accusation coming from Team Mayweather that pound for pound king Manny Pacquiao refuses to undergo Olympic-style drug testing. Olympic style testing consists of multiple tests taken randomly throughout preparations for the sporting event. These tests include eight to ten random urine tests as well as five or six blood tests.

Al Haymon, manager of undefeated Floyd Mayweather Jr, insisted that the fight can still happen as planned, but Pacquiao must agree to the blood testing standards of the United States Anti-Doping Agency (U.S.A.D.A) and take a blood test within thirty days of the bout. This is a demand that Team Mayweather firmly stands behind; it is non-negotiable. Pacquiao, who never previously had a reputation as a dirty fighter, has passed every single one of his drug tests. The customary drug test, however, consists of a stand urine test before and immediately following a fight.

Team Mayweather, particularly Floyd's father Floyd Mayweather Sr, suspects that Pacquiao is taking Human Growth Hormone (HGH). Human Growth Hormone is a peptide hormone that enhances tissue growth by stimulating protein formation throughout the body. Side effects of HGH injection are high risks of liver damage, due to the fact that liver is overworked, as well as a possible shutdown of the pituitary gland, a pea-sized hypophysis located at the base of brain.

In an interview with Fighthype's Percy Crawford, Mayweather Sr said, "Yeah, I definitely want Pacquiao to give blood. How is that going to affect him mentally? You could give blood a day before the fight and it wouldn't affect you, let alone three weeks out. Something isn't right man and we're going to make sure everything is copacetic." Mayweather supporters will continue to question whether or not Pacquiao is indeed attempting to hide something from the public. After all, if one is a clean and honest competitor, there should be no objection to following through with blood testing.

Perhaps all of this is just yet another negotiating ploy on behalf of Team Mayweather representative Golden Boy Promotions. Maybe it is just smoke and mirrors. At the end of the day, this commentator believes Pacquiao will go through with the testing. Should he fail to comply with the testing, he would likely be subjected to more of the same criticism from that general public that Team Mayweather is currently bestowing upon him. That is exactly what Team Mayweather wants. However, I doubt very much that Pacquiao would jeopardize such a historic event or risk damaging his own reputation by failing to comply. It is my prediction that both Pacquiao and Mayweather will be tested and both will come out absolutely clean.

Mayweather has already agreed to go through with the blood testing, as well as a demand by Team Pacquiao that he be penalized $10 million for each additional pound should he weigh in over the weight limit. Both combatants, however, will be subject to that penalty for coming in overweight.

photo courtesy: bustedspoke.com

Mayweather vs. Pacquiao in serious jeopardy; Pacquiao refuses to have blood taken!

PRESS RELEASE: The mega-fight between Floyd Mayweather and Manny Pacquiao is now in jeopardy after Golden Boy Promotions, on behalf of Mayweather Promotions, learned today that Manny Pacquiao is refusing to comply with Olympic style drug testing as outlined and mandated by the United States Anti Doping Agency (USADA) and as requested by Mayweather's management to ensure fair play and sportsmanship by both fighters.


Early today Richard Schaefer, CEO of Golden Boy Promotions, was contacted by Top Rank President Todd duBoef, who informed Schaefer that Pacquiao would not agree to have his blood taken within 30-days of the bout based on the fighter's superstition of testing so close to a fight..

Schaefer commented, "Todd told me that Pacquiao has difficulty with taking blood and doesn't want to do it so close to the fight. He, Pacquiao, would only agree to have blood drawn before the kick-off press conference and after the fight."

Olympic style drug testing involves random sampling of the athlete's blood and urine prior to and after the fight. The USADA procedure includes both blood and urine sampling so that all banned substances, some of which do not show up in urine alone, are tested for thoroughly.

"It is unfortunate to hear this from Manny Pacquiao's representatives, particularly since, as of today, both parties had worked out all other issues related to this fight," said Schaefer. "Team Mayweather is certainly surprised that an elite athlete like Manny Pacquiao would refuse drug testing procedures which Floyd has already agreed to and have been agreed to by many other top athletes such as Lance Armstrong, and Olympians Michael Phelps, LeBron James and Kobe Bryant."

Mayweather, who was informed of Pacquiao's reluctance shortly after Schaefer received word of the impasse, feels Pacquiao has to explain himself immediately or be faced with accusations from the media and the public regarding his own status as a clean and drug free athlete.

"I understand Pacquiao not liking having his blood taken, because frankly I don't know anyone who really does," said Mayweather. "But in a fight of this magnitude, I think it is our responsibility to subject ourselves to sportsmanship at the highest level. I have already agreed to the testing and it is a shame that he is not willing to do the same. It leaves me with great doubt as to the level of fairness I would be facing in the ring that night. I hope that this is either some miscommunication or that Manny will change his mind and step up and allow these tests, which were good enough for all these other great athletes, to be performed by USADA."

Leonard Ellerbe, CEO of Mayweather Promotions said, "We hope that Manny will do the right thing and agree to the testing as it is an egregious act to deny the testing and hence, deny the millions of fans the right to see this amazing fight. We just want to make sure there is a level playing field in a sport that is a man-to-man contest that relies on strength and ability. I still hope this decision is coming from someone in Pacquiao's camp and not Manny himself as it would be a shame that an athlete of his stature and who represents his whole country would not be able to show the public or his fellow athletes that he agrees to the highest standards in sports competition."

Kermit Cintron: "There's no bigger fight than me versus Cotto on the even of the Puerto Rican Day Parade in NYC!"

PRESS RELEASE: It’s Christmas time, but despite having a great family to share the season with, Kermit Cintron is feeling a little lonely. That’s because since his May victory over highly touted contender Alfredo Angulo, it seems as though everyone else from welterweight (where he has twice held world titles) to junior middleweight (where he pulled a convincing upset over Angulo) has forgotten about Cintron, the WBC #2, WBO #2, IBF #3 ranked contender..


To bide his time, Cintron (32-2-1, 28 KOs) fulfilled a lifelong dream by returning to his native Puerto Rico and stopping Juliano Ramos in five rounds. Now he’s back on the prowl for the biggest names and toughest challenges.

“I don’t discriminate,” said Cintron. “From 147 to 154, I feel like I can beat anyone in the world. My only two losses were to a guy who was later found to have loaded gloves. Almost no else has a track record as good as mine, and yet everyone else seems to be getting opportunities.”

Among those getting opportunities is Angulo, who was back on the HBO airwaves six months after losing to Cintron in a battle for the interim WBO junior middleweight title against untested Harry Joe Yorgey. Angulo won easily and is now planning his first title defense while Cintron sits in limbo.

“How does this make sense? I beat Angulo and he gets two more dates like it’s nothing,” asked Cintron. “Since I beat Angulo, the only fight I’ve been offered was to fight Joshua Clottey and I was already scheduled to fight down in Puerto Rico. So my DiBella Entertainment stablemate Carlos Quintana took the fight, and it ended up getting cancelled anyways.”

While Cintron is eager to fight the best from 147 to 154, it is a fight against fellow Puerto Rican Miguel Cotto that tops his wish list.

“A fight between Cotto and I makes the most sense. It’s about Puerto Rican pride,” said Cintron. “There could not be a bigger fight than me versus Cotto on the eve of the Puerto Rican Day Parade in New York City. What would make no sense would be for Cotto to give Margarito another fight.”

If a fight versus Cotto cannot happen, Cintron is willing to put to clear up any questions that remain with regard to his bout against Sergio Martinez.

“Because the Cotto fight wouldn’t happen until June, I’d like to get a rematch against Sergio Martinez. Some people disputed the draw. Look, the guy wore so much hair gel and moose, that the fumes were making me dizzy. And I still managed to put it on him on only 4 weeks’ notice. Let’s clear the air for good. With an eight week camp, I knock him out. Simple as that!”

Added Cintron, “And if I can’t get either of those fights, I’ll gladly move up to middleweight to fight Kelly Pavlik. If no is stepping up to the plate to fight me, they better know I am ready and willing to fight them!”

Boxingchronicles.com 2009 - Fighter of the Year!

Throughout the week, Boxingchronicles.com will be posting its annual awards for Fighter of the Year, Fight of the Year, Upset of the Year, Knockout of the Year, Comeback of the Year, and Success story of the Year.  Today we will begin with the winner for Fighter of Year.  Who made the greatest impression in the sport of boxing?  Who scored the biggest victories at the most elite level of competition?  Who was the Fighter of the Year in 2009?  The winner is...

MANNY PACQUIAO

Having won world titles in two different weight classes, with a 2nd round KO of Ricky Hatton at 140lbs in May, followed by a 12th round TKO of Miguel Cotto at 147lbs last month, the pound for pound king of the ring was head and shoulders above his fellow competitors in the sport of boxing this year. 

The Pacman's brutal knockout of Hatton remains a viable candidate for knockout of the year.  His impressive one-sided, final round stoppage of Cotto was yet another fight in which many respected fanatics believed that the Puerto Rican sensation was hard-hitting and strong enough to derail the Pacquiao express. How wrong they were.  With such extraordinary wins in fights of great significance, can any fighter other than Manny Pacquiao be the Fighter of the Year for 2009?  This commentator says, "No way."

STAY TUNED FOR THE FIGHT OF THE YEAR AWARD COMING TOMORROW!

Pavlik's impressive stoppage of Espino, and other weekend results!

Kelly Pavlik TKO5 Miguel Espino...You'll have to forgive me boxing fans, I've been a little bit behind due to the holidays.  Over the weekend at the Beeghly Center in his hometown of Youngstown, OH, middleweight champion Kelly Pavlik successfully returned to the ring from a ten month hiatus to score a 5th round TKO of Miguel Espino.  Espino was docked a point at the end of the first round for punching after the bell.  One would think a point deduction that early in the contest was a bit premature.  Nonethless, the two fighters traded punches throughout, but it was Pavlik who dropped Espino twice in round four and once in the fifth round.  Espino's corner advised referee Steve Smoger to call a halt to the carnage.  Pavlik was making the the third defense of his title. 

With intentions of staying at middleweight, Pavlik may finally be ready to face Paul Williams.  Pavlik's promoter, Bob Arum of Top Rank, believes the fight could be made in March or April of next year.  At this time, Pavlik vs. Williams is the only fight that matters in the middleweight division.  It would be crowdpleaser in which the two best middleweights in the world would be squaring off against one another.

Samuel Peter TKO4 Gabe Brown...Former WBC heavyweight champion Samuel Peter scored an entertaining fourth round TKO over Gabe Brown, who came into the ring at a woefully high 360-plus lbs.  Brown appeared to do more taunting than fighting, as he stuck his chin out repeatedly signaling the former champion to hit him and Peter was happy to oblige.  Following a bolo punch by Brown, Peter clobbered Brown prompting referee Randy Jarvis to stop the contest.  Not much of a fight here, folks.  One man was entertaining with his taunting tactics and overweight physique, but really did not put up much of a fight.  The other is a former champion who was simply trying to get back into the win column.  He did so, more or less.

Humberto Soto W10 Jesus Chavez...At the Arena Itson, in Ciudad Obregon, Sonora, Mexico, WBC super featherweight champion Humberto Soto won a 10 round decision over the past-prime former two-time world champion Jesus Chavez in a non-title ten round affair.  Soto dropped Chavez in the first round, but Chavez was game throughout and managed to go the full ten round distance with Soto which really surprised this commentator.  Chavez lost points in the fifth and sixth rounds for unncessarily roughness and low blows respectively.  In the end, Soto won a unanimous decision.  Official scores were 100-87 across the board.

Mayweather vs. Pacquiao set for March 13 at MGM Grand!

Sources throughout the weekend have reported that Mayweather vs. Pacquiao will take place on March 13 at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas, NV.  "It's the MGM. It's definite," an article from Fanhouse.com quoted a source as saying. The decision to choose MGM Grand was based on the success of the previous events that have taken place there for both of the respective combatants, "Familiarity with the location as well as their past success there."

Choices for the venue were narrowed down to Staples Center in Los Angeles, the new state-of-the-art Dallas Cowboys Arena in Dallas, and the MGM Grand in Las Vegas.  Staples Center was first to be eliminated from the list, when Pacquiao declared he did not want the fight to take place there.  Additionally, Staples Center bid the lowest amount of money at $20 million, an offer that was outbidded $5 million by Jerry Jones's offer of $25 million to host the fight at the Cowboys Stadium.  According to a report from the Philippine Star, the MGM Grand is capable of generating live gate sales of at least $28 million.

Practically everybody knew that this megafight would end up in Las Vegas, as there is no other tourist attraction in the country that could generate as much of a buzz for an extraveganza of this magnitude. Mayweather vs. Pacquiao is a huge event, a media phenomenon, that has even the most casual sports fans outside of inner boxing circles talking.  Therefore it makes perfect sense to stage this fight at the MGM Grand, not only for the fact that both fighters have fought their biggest fights there, but also because Richard Schaefer of Golden Boy Promotions and Bob Arum of Top Rank both have positive working relationships with that particular resort.  Why would Schaefer or Arum stage this fight anywhere else, at the risk of souring their relationships with the MGM Grand? 

Pacquiao and Mayweather have agreed to fight at the weight limit of 147lbs, for Pacquiao's WBO welterweight championship, using eight-ounce gloves of their choice, for a 50-50 purse split. As recently as last week, Team Mayweather additionally requested that Pacquiao undergo Olympic-style drug testing.  Therefore, both parties will be subjected to that level of testing. 

There will be a press conference in New York City on January 6, followed by a press conference in Los Angeles on January 8, to officially announce Mayweather vs. Pacquiao for March 13.  Ladies and gentlemen, boxing fans of all ages, this here is your early Christmas present!

Former champions Campbell and Mora sign with Golden Boy!

PRESS RELEASE: Jacksonville, Florida native Nate Campbell began his professional boxing career in February of 2000 and ever since has showcased the speed, agility and power which have helped him to rack up 33 wins, with 25 coming by way of knockout. Now, he has joined forces with Golden Boy Promotions as he looks to add more accolades to his already illustrious career and make a run at a title in the 140-pound weight division.


"I am really excited to become a part of the Golden Boy Promotions team," said Campbell. "I am confident that Golden Boy will be able to help me to achieve everything that I am still looking to accomplish in my career and I couldn't be happier."

"Nate Campbell has already shown that he has everything it takes to be a great champion," said Oscar de la Hoya, President of Golden Boy Promotions. "He has battled some of boxing's greatest fighters and is ready to make a run at another world title in 2010."

Nate "Galaxxy Warrior" Campbell (33-5-1, 25 KO's) went undefeated in his first 23 professional fights and by January 2003 he had captured the NABF and NABA junior lightweight titles, just three years into his professional career. During his nine-year career, he has battled some of the sport's biggest names including former World Champion Joel "Cepillo" Casamayor, current World Champion Timothy Bradley and Almazbek "Kid Diamond" Raiymkulov, but he is most remembered for his battle with then-undefeated Juan "Baby Bull" Diaz in which he captured the WBA, WBO and IBF Lightweight World Championships by handing Diaz his first career defeat in March of 2008. The 37-year-old has eased up the show-boating he was known for early in his career and has adopted a veteran-like style that has been compared to that of Golden Boy Promotions partner Bernard Hopkins. Campbell hopes that his mature ways and his signing with Golden Boy will lead him to another world title in the coming year.

A native of East Los Angeles, the same neighborhood that produced boxing superstar Oscar de la Hoya, Sergio "The Latin Snake" Mora has paved a golden road for himself as well, winning the first season of "The Contender" and then going on to win a junior middleweight world championship in 2008. Now, one of the top current middleweight contenders in the world, he is joining forces with De La Hoya as one of the newest members of the Golden Boy Promotions roster as he looks to capture another world title.


"I met Oscar in Big Bear in 1999 when I was training for the Olympics trials and he was training for Trinidad and seeing him in camp was all the inspiration I needed to be a fighter," said Mora. "I'm honored to be a member of the Golden Boy Promotions family and am confident they they will help me accomplish my goals."

"Sergio Mora has all the tools, in and out of the ring, to be a boxing superstar and we're going to do everything we can to get him there," said De La Hoya, President of Golden Boy Promotions. "He has great skills, world-class experience, charisma and is just approaching his prime as a fighter. 2010 is going to be a big year for Sergio."

Known to fight fans as "The Latin Snake", Sergio Mora (21-1-1, 5 KO's) was just 12-0 when he was selected to compete on the first season of the reality series "The Contender". After four wins over Najai Turpin, Ishe Smith, Jesse Brinkley and Peter Manfredo Jr., Mora was not only the champion of the series, he was also a household name to millions of fans. The next step for him was winning a world championship and after going unbeaten in his next five fights following his stint on "The Contender", he got his shot on June 7, 2008 when Mora won a hard-fought 12-round decision over the late Vernon Forrest. Three months later, Forrest would win his belt back in an exciting rematch, but the 29-year-old Mora has been keeping sharp in the gym and is ready to make his move towards winning the middleweight title in 2010.

Hatton vs. Marquez, Malignaggi's victory, and the shape of the 140lb landscape!

There have been reports as of late that former junior welterweight champion Ricky Hatton will be making his comeback next year against lightweight champion Juan Manuel Marquez. Many question Hatton's decision to continue fighting, taking into account the way he looked on the canvas after he had fallen prey to a brutal knockout by pound for pound king Manny Pacquiao this past May.

Hatton insists he has an itch to return to the ring. Marquez believes Hatton is the fight he needs in order to move in a positive direction with his career, following the one-sided loss to Mayweather this past September. Both combatants know that they must win this fight in order to get rematches with the two common opponents who have defeated each of them - Pacquiao and Mayweather.


Where does former IBF junior welterweight champion Paulie Malignaggi stand, following his impressive unanimous decision win over Juan Diaz?? In the post-fight interview with Max Kellerman, Malignaggi made it clear that he would like to face Marquez, with the winner getting a fight against Hatton. Now that Hatton and Marquez have a mutual interest as well as a verbal agreement to face one another, at least according to Golden Boy Promotions matchmaker Eric Gomez, Malignaggi may be forced to look else where for the time being.

How about a Junior Welterweight Super Six Tournament?  What say you, HBO?

This commentator believes a tournament, not unlike the Super Six Tournament currently unfolding at 168lbs on Showtime, would be appropriate for the 140lb division which appears to have grown deeper over the past couple of years. HBO has been hinting at a tournament, involving four fighters in a total of three fights that would practically mirror the middleweight world series that took place in 2001, but considering the depth of talent at 140lbs right now I do not believe such a condensed competition would be sufficient enough to reveal the true crème of the crop. There are certainly more than four titleholders and top contenders whom I believe would qualify in this proposed junior welterweight Super Six.

WBO champion Timothy Bradley, who unanimously out pointed Lamont Peterson this past weekend, is an obvious selection.

WBA kingpin Amir Khan of England, who just stopped Dimitriy Salita in less than a round almost two weeks ago, would be a worthy addition to the tournament.

Current IBF titlist Juan Urango, whose only losses have come against Hatton in 2007 and WBC welterweight champion Andre Berto this past May in a welterweight title bout, is another viable candidate.

How about power punching brawler Marcos Maidana, the interim WBA titlist, who forced young Victor Ortiz to say No Mas in what was a barbaric knock down, drag out of a battle this past June?

Undefeated Devon Alexander, who currently holds the WBC strap, has a couple credible wins in his young career over former world champions Demarcus Corley and Junior Witter.

Stylistically speaking, there are a number of fascinating match ups that can be made between this diverse group of boxers, brawlers, and speedsters respectively. As you can see, Malignaggi would match up well with any of the world's best at 140lbs. Whoever were to emerge victorious from such a tournament would bare a legitimate claim the throne of world's best.

Let Hatton and Marquez face each other, in what would be a hot ticket across the pond in the United Kingdom. Perhaps Ortiz, who stopped Antonio Diaz over the weekend and is still rebounding from the loss to Maidana, can face the winner of Hatton vs. Marquez. Whoever wins between those three guys can challenge the winner of the tournament.

photo courtesy: John Booz / Fightwireimages.com

Wladimir Klitschko set to defend against Chambers on March 20!

Boxingchronicles.com has now learned from various sources that heavyweight champion Wladimir Klitschko is set to defend his title against American challenger Eddie Chambers on March 20. 

Following his lone loss [unanimous decision] to fellow heavyweight contender Alexander Povetkin in December of 2007, Chambers has posted some impressive wins over the likes of former WBC heavyweight champion Samuel Peter as well as previously undefeated Alexander Dimitrenko.  Chambers won a unanimous decision over Peter this past March, followed by a majority decision over Dimitrenko this past July.  The win over Dimitrenko, which took place in Germany, was a WBO title eliminator that earned Chambers a shot at Klitschko.  Klitschko's last outting was in June against Ruslan Chagaev, whom he stopped in 10 rounds.  The title fight will likely be televised by HBO. 

Hopefully Fast Eddie of Philadelphia is able to compete like a Philadelphia fighter and pose a greater challenge to Wladmir, which would be the polar opposite of the pathetic display that we all wish we hadn't witnessed from Kevin Johnson against Vitali this past weekend.

Other results from Saturday night

Vitali Klitschko W12 Kevin Johnson...The WBC heavyweight title fight that took place in Berne, Switzerland between defending champion Vitali Klitschko and previously undefeated American challenger Kevin Johnson was pretty much one man show.  Klitschko grounded out a unanimous decision, in a fight in which Johnson spent much of his time lying on the ropes, not punching, and focusing primarily on making Dr. Ironfist miss his punches.  Johnson may have thrown a few jabs here and there, as he was pretty much the one-handed fighter he appears to have been throughout his entire career. Pathetic showing for Johnson, as he was all bark beforehand and no bite during the fight.  Official judges scores were 120-108 (twice) and 119-109.  Certainly Boxingchronicles.come endorses the 120-108 scorecard.  Shoving Vitali's brother Wladimir (the universally recognized heavyweight champion of the world) immediately following the contest was about as classless as Johnson could get.

television: HBO Boxing After Dark

Timothy Bradley W12 Lamont Peterson... In a battle of undefeated junior welterweights at the Agua Caliente Casino Resort & Spa in Rancho Mirage, CA, WBO champion Timothy Bradley won a 12 round decision over Lamont Peterson to retain his title.  Bradley decked Peterson with a right hand to the side of the head in round three, but Peterson was not hurt and proceeded to battle his way into the fight as the middle rounds ensued.  Both combatants got into some heated exchanges in the championship rounds, but it was Bradley who emerged victorious with a unanimous decision.  Official scores were 118-110, 119-108, and 120-107.  This was a tremendous win for Bradley.  Hopefully we will see him in a junior welterweight tournament at some point next year, along with Paulie Malignaggi, WBA champion Amir Khan, WBA interim titlist Marcos Maidana, WBC kingpin Devon Alexander, and IBF champion Juan Urango.

Vic Darchinyan TKO2 Tomas Rojas... Super flyweight champion Vic Darchinyan successfully returned from his loss to IBF flyweight champion Joseph Agbeko last July, by retaining his championship via second round stoppage of challenger Tomas Rojas.  Rojas had success in the first round, as he was able to beat Darchinyan to the punch with some good counterpunching, but at the end of round two a left hand put Rojas down for the ten count.

television: Showtime Championship Boxing

Malignaggi avenges loss to Juan Diaz; Ortiz stops Antonio Diaz on cuts!

Paulie Malignaggi W12 Juan Diaz... In a fight that took place on neutral ground at the UIC Pavillion in Chicago, in a larger-sized ring at a more reasonable weight of 139lbs, the second time was a charm for Brooklyn's Paulie Malignaggi as he won a unanimous decision over Juan Diaz on Saturday night.  Malignaggi controlled fight fight with beautiful ring generalship behind his up jab and combinations.  In round five, Diaz got more aggressive and some of the middle rounds were relatively close. 

Malignaggi increased his points lead in the fight in round 10, when he scored a questionable knockdown of Diaz.  As the replay showed between rounds, Diaz was knocked off balance with shot behind the head but no part of Diaz actually touched the canvas, but referee Gino Rodriguez proceeded to issue Diaz an eight count.  Out of desparation, Diaz won rounds 11 and 12 and by going on the attack and firing left hands at Malignaggi, but it was too little too late for the Baby Bull.  All three official ringside judges scored the bout 116-111 in favor of Malignaggi.  Boxingchronicles.com also scored the contest 116-111 for the Magic Man, giving Diaz rounds 5, 8, 11, and 12.  Malignaggi avenges his loss to Diaz, a loss that came by way of a controversial unanimous decision in Diaz's hometown of Houston back in August.

Victor Ortiz TKO6 Antonio Diaz...Ortiz successfully returned from his dissapointing TKO loss to Marcos Maidana this past summer by stopping veteran Antonio Diaz on a bad cut over his left eye.  Ortiz dropped Diaz in the third round and the dominated the contest up until the point in which Diaz's corner stopped the fight between the 6th and 7th round.  The fight was fought at the 140lb weight limit.

television: HBO Boxing After Dark

Lou Dibella releases Jermain Taylor

Upon receiving word from Team Taylor that former middleweight champion Jermain Taylor would remain in the Super Six Super Middleweight tournament, Taylor's promoter Lou Dibella of Dibella Entertainment released a dramatic statement regarding his decision to drop Taylor.  In his last fight October 21, Taylor was brutally knocked out in the 12th and final round of his fight against former IBF middleweight champion, undefeated Arthur Abraham. 

In his next fight Taylor will face newly crowned undefeated WBA super middleweight champion Andre Ward, who just won the title with a dominating unanimous decision win over Mikkell Kessler a few weeks ago.  Dibella issued a statement saying the following:


“I have just been informed though numerous press reports that Jermain Taylor has elected to continue his participation in The Super Six: World Boxing Classic tournament, and will face Andre Ward in April. It is with a heavy heart, but strong conviction, that I will recuse myself and DiBella Entertainment as Jermain’s promoter.
“Jermain’s career has been outstanding, and it has been a pleasure and honor to promote him. His victories against Bernard Hopkins remain the highlights of my career as a promoter. Jermain is not only a great fighter, but a good and decent man with a wonderful family. It is out of genuine concern for him and his family that I am compelled to make this decision.

“I informed him, as I do all my contracted fighters, that my goal was to help his secure financial stability for his family, maximize his potential, and leave our unforgiving sport with his health intact.

“It is my belief that the continuation of Jermain’s career as an active fighter places him at unnecessary risk. While he is undoubtedly capable of prevailing in future bouts, I cannot, in conscience, remain involved given my assessment of such risk.

“I wish Jermain all the best in his future endeavors. All of us at DiBella Entertainment hold Jermain close to our hearts and consider him and his family part of our family. We wish him Godspeed and continued health.” – Lou DiBella


Dibella did the morally correct thing in dropping Taylor. What he's saying is, he does not care to promote what could very well be a risk to Taylor's health, or even worse, jeopardize his life. Dibella was with Taylor up until the Abraham KO loss; perhaps that was one fight too long.


After the dramatic 12th round KO loss to Froch back in April, in which Taylor was merely seconds away from a decision victory, Dibella probably figured, "OK, Jermain was that close to winning a title. Let's give it one more go." The fashion in which Abraham brutally knocked out Taylor put a bad taste in Dibella's mouth, especially considering the fact the Team Taylor has elected to fight on.

In this case, I have to support Dibella in what I see as an act of mercy. This is his way of saying, "kid I love you, I don't want you to fight anymore, and while I can not force you to stop fighting, I'm not going to support your decision to continue fighting by remaining as your promoter."
In his last five fights, Taylor has a record of 1-4, with three of his defeats coming by way of knockout. After Erik Morales got knocked out in three rounds by Manny Pacquiao in November of 2006, and then lost a decision to David Diaz in August of 2007, I recall Morales' promoter Bob Arum of Top Rank responding in a similar way, implying that if Morales chose to continue his fighting career, it would be without his services as the promoter.

At a certain point in time, it is incumbent on the promoters to say enough is enough, rather than milking their fighters for every dollar that they're worth well beyond their prime years of competition.

Diaz vs. Malignaggi II: Scoring could once again become a factor in rematch!

Almost four months have gone by since Juan Diaz and Paulie Malignaggi met in their hotly contested twelve round encounter at the Toyota Center in Houston Texas. The fight was contested at a catch weight of 138.5 pounds.

Following the announcement of the decision, which went in favor of Diaz, Malignaggi launched off into a tirade claiming that he was robbed of victory. The fight was close and mildly entertaining, but the verdict was certainly debatable. Perhaps one element of the decision that was not up for debate was the incompetence of Gale Van Hoy’s scorecard, which showed a 118-110 tally for Diaz.


However you scored the fight, it was apparent that Malignaggi gave a far better account of himself than one might have expected. Based on Malignaggi’s showing against Ricky Hatton in November of 2008, this observer picked Diaz to win a comfortable decision. It was expected that the brittle-fisted Malignaggi, not generally regarded as a big puncher, would be reluctant to let his hands go against the aggressive-minded Diaz . Instead fans were treated to the spectacle of Malignaggi outhussling the proverbial work horse in Diaz for the duration of the bout.

At the end of the day, the first fight was close. Malignaggi threw and landed more punches, but it was the Baby Bull who landed the crisper shots. Realistically the fight was a one or two point fight for either guy. Boxingchronicles.com scored Diaz vs. Malignaggi a draw. While stocks were elevated on both sides, fans have been clamoring for the rematch for months. Fans will finally get their wish tomorrow night, as Diaz and Malignaggi meet in a twelve round bout which is being contested at the weight limit of 139 pounds.

Much can be said about the attributed hometown cooking for Diaz, being that the first fight took place in his hometown of Houston. Labeling the outcome of their first meeting a robbery, however, may be stretching it considering severity of the fraudulently inaccurate scoring rendered in the fight between Ali Funeka and Joan Guzman couple weeks ago in Montreal.

However, it is obvious that Diaz and Malignaggi have unfinished business that they intend to take care of when they meet on Saturday night at the UIC Pavilion in Chicago, IL. Based on the fact that there was a bad decision in boxing two weeks ago, and neither of the combatants in this fight are big punchers, scoring should once again becomes a significant factor. In all likelihood, Diaz vs. Malignaggi II is also going to the scorecards.

If their rematch is as close as it was last time, I believe there is a chance that Malignaggi will get the decision this time around in order to make up for any wrong doing that may have been committed this past August. Why not, especially if the rematch is as crowd pleasing as the first fight was? In that case there would be grounds for a rubber match.

Diaz must apply constant pressure and get inside of Malignaggi’s wingspan, while it is incumbent on Malignaggi to keep the fight on the outside and utilize his reach advantage while commanding ring generalship. At close quarters, the momentum favors Diaz. As long as Malignaggi maintains the punch output that he exhibited the last time, and he can be just a bit more consistent and keep the fight in the center of the ring, I believe he can outpoint Diaz for a close decision this time around.

Expect one of the scorecards to be a draw, while the two other cards reflect close scores in favor of The Magic Man from Brooklyn, NY. I want to say 114-114, 115-113, and 115-113, in a fight in which Malignaggi realistically wins about seven or eight rounds.

Prediction: Malignaggi by MD.

Diaz vs. Malignaggi II will be televised on HBO Boxing After Dark on Saturday, December 12 at 10:15 PM ET / 7:15PM PT.

Diaz and Malignaggi primed for highly anticipated rematch!

Excited and brimming with confidence, both Juan Diaz and Paulie Malignaggi spoke at the final press conference about preparations for their rematch this Saturday night in Chicago.  Their first fight, which took place in Houston, TX on August 22, ended with a questionable unanimous decision in favor of Diaz.

PRESS RELEASE: 

JUAN DIAZ, Former Three-Time Lightweight World Champion

"I'm excited, I'm happy and I'm ready. I feel like Santa Claus came early this year because come Saturday night, its going to be easy money. Not just Houston and Chicago, but this time the whole world is going to feel my anger. They are going to see a "Baby Bull" they have never seen before. Saturday night I'm going to claim what's mine. I did it once and I'm going to do it again."

PAULIE MALIGNAGGI, Former Junior Welterweight World Champion

"I'm excited about Saturday. We have worked really hard for this fight. I'm ready and Juan says he is ready. It's going to be a great fight.

"I'm sharper and feel better than ever going into this fight.."

"They can tell me anything they want about Juan Diaz. They can tell me he moved mountains or that he jumped from Houston to Chicago in a single bound. I don't care. When the bell rings I know one thing, I'm ready.."

VICTOR ORTIZ, Top Junior Welterweight Contender

"I want to thank Chicago for having me and also thank Diaz's team for giving me the opportunity to fight someone who I grew up admiring [the Diaz brothers]."
"What's done in my past is done and I'm ready to move on."

ANTONIO DIAZ, Former World Title Challenger

"I took three years off, but I was not retired, I was just taking a break. I came back last year and now I feel younger, faster and hungrier than ever before."

"Victor Ortiz is a good fighter; he's tough and he can hit. Everyone has a bad night sometimes, I've had bad nights, and that is what Victor had when he fought Maidana. I'm not even looking at that fight. I'm looking at all his fights before that because I know that will be the Victor who will show up Saturday night."

"I'm ready for anything. I've been in the ring for 50 something fights so there is nothing new Ortiz can do that I haven't seen before."
 
DAVID ITSKOWITCH, COO of Golden Boy Promotions

"The main event is a rematch of a great fight from this summer. In one corner you have a guy, Juan Diaz, who is trying to prove what he already knows; he's trying to put an exclamation point on his win from August. In the other corner you have a guy who thinks he was robbed, so he's trying to prove that the judges got it wrong the first time. Fights like these are always exciting, and this one will be especially exciting after their great back and forth battle this summer."

"Victor Ortiz versus Antonio Diaz is a classic case of the young lion and the old veteran. The young guy is trying to prove what he's learned and the old guy is trying to prove how much he knows."

"Victor Ortiz is coming off a speed bump in his last fight, so there is a lot on the line for him on Saturday night. But as they say, it's not that you get knocked down, its what you do when you get up. Victor is ready to get up and show what a special talent he really is."

"The undercard for Saturday night is huge and I really do mean huge with 10 fights on the undercard. You have some of the great, undefeated up-and-comers, along with some former world champions. There really is a little bit of everything, and there are going to be some great fights before the main events."

LOU DIBELLA, President of DiBella Entertainment

"This is a really great fight card and it is the type of fight that the people of Chicago should be proud to host."

"I want to thank Juan Diaz for taking this rematch. He didn't have to; he could have been a punk like a lot of people are in this sport, but he took the fight and has shown once again that he is a bright spot in the world of boxing."

BERNARD HOPKINS, Golden Boy Promotions Partner; Former Two Division World Champion

"The first fight between Diaz and Malignaggi was a very close fight; it really could have gone either way. Some people say Malignaggi won, others think Diaz won, and that is what is great about the sport of boxing, it brings controversy which leads to great fights."

"I'm looking forward to seeing these fighters set the record straight and put an exclamation point on their great fight in August. These two are going to close out 2009 with a bang."

WILLIE SAVANNAH, Juan Diaz's Manager

"Juan is in tremendous shape, as he always is. He never enters the ring without being in great condition."

"Juan seems old, but really he's only 26. He's just been in the game for a long time. He won his first world title at 20, becoming the second youngest man ever to win a title, but even with all this experience, I've never seen him more motivated for a fight than he is to fight Malignaggi again."

RONNIE SHIELDS, Juan Diaz's Trainer

"Juan is in tip-top shape and ready to go. We have had a lot of success together and are looking forward to more on Saturday night."

SHERIF YOUNAN, Paulie Malignaggi's Trainer

"Everyone saw the fight last time and this time Paulie is more than ready. Come Saturday its going to all be over."

ROLANDO ARELLANO, Victor Ortiz's Co-Manager

"We have nothing but respect for Antonio Diaz. He is a world class fighter."

"When you have two opposing forces of that nature and they collide, you're in for an explosion."

DANNY GARCIA, Victor Ortiz's Trainer

"Victor is ready. He has been training really hard and running a lot. He is ready for a great fight against Antonio Diaz and he is going to take him round for round."

GABINO SAENZ, Antonio Diaz's Trainer

"We are ready for this fight. We came prepared and we are going to take it round by round. This fight is a young guy against a veteran. Antonio Diaz is the veteran, so when he gets in the ring, he knows what to do."

LUIS BARRAGAN, Director of Programming HBO Sports

"There is obviously some unfinished business between Juan Diaz and Paulie Malignaggi, but don't let the controversy make you lose sight of the actual fight. Appreciate it for what it is - a battle between two great fighters. Don't only worry about the judges' decisions."

"We're excited to have Victor Ortiz back on HBO. He hit a speed bump in his last "Boxing After Dark" appearance, but I'm sure he is eager to show that this was only a small bump and that he is deserving of all the accolades he's been given up to this point in his career."

KEVIN O'FINN, Director of UIC Pavilion

"This is by far the biggest fight we have ever had at the Pavilion but it shows this is the place to go in Chicago for boxing and we hope to see everyone there."

RON PUCCILLIO, Director of Athletics of Illinois State Athletic Unit

"I don't think you'll see a better fight all year or next year for that matter. This is going to be a great fight between two of the best boxers around."

About "Juan Diaz vs. Paulie Malignaggi II":

"By Popular Demand": Diaz vs. Malignaggi II features former Three-Time Lightweight World Champion Juan "Baby Bull" Diaz taking on former Junior Welterweight World Champion Paulie "Magic Man" Malignaggi in a 12 round NABO junior welterweight rematch of their exciting August 22, 2009 bout. The co-main event will feature a ten round welterweight showdown between top contender "Vicious" Victor Ortiz and former world title challenger Antonio Diaz. The evening of boxing is presented by Golden Boy Promotions and DiBella Entertainment in association with 8 Count Productions and sponsored by Cerveza Tecate and Dewalt Tools. The bouts will air live on HBO's "Boxing After Dark" beginning at 10:15 pm ET/PT (9:15 pm CT). The first fight starts at 3:15 pm CT at the UIC Pavillion.

TICKETS: Tickets, priced at $251, $156, $86, $51 and $31, are available for purchase at ticketmaster.com or by phone at 1-312-226-5800, toll free at 1-800-745-3000 and at the UIC Pavilion Box Office (open Thursday and Friday from 9 am - 4 pm CT).

Cowboys stadium no longer a viable option for Pacquiao vs. Mayweather venue!

Moments ago ESPN's Dan Rafael reported that Golden Boy CEO Richard Schaefer withdrew from today's trip to Arlington, TX with Top Rank Promoter Bob Arum and HBO Sports President Ross Greenburg.  They were going to meet with Dallas Cowboy officials and take a tour of the new Dallas Cowboys stadium, but for unspecified reasons, Schaefer elected not to go on the trip, removing the new Dallas Cowboys stadium from the front running candidates of venues that could host the super fight. 

When Arum asked Schaefer why he withdrew from the trip to Texas, he claims Schaefer replied with the following, "'I'm not going to Texas. I'm not going to do the fight in Texas. I'm not going to waste my time.' That's the explanation."  For a high sweepstakes event of this nature that requires unbridled commitmenta and devotion, does Mr. Schaefer not have a more appropriate answer than, "I'm not going to Texas.  I'm not going to do the fight in Texas.  I'm not going to waste my time"? 

Arum continued to explain Schaefer's sudden decision  for choosing to back out of the trip, "'The fight is March 13 and there isn't enough time to do a fight at an outdoor stadium.' It's bizarre, but that's what he said. I reminded him [that the stadium has a retractable roof]. He said it doesn't matter. I am not going to theorize. I'm just telling you what happened."  This commentator asks, why isn't it enough time Mr. Schaefer? Chances are a fight of this magnitude will have one of the highest numbers of attendance in the history of all sporting events. What happens if Dallas offers both you and Arum the highest bid out of all of the competing venues and resorts that are pushing to stage the fight?

Both Greenburg and Schaefer have been unavailable for comment.  For now it appears as though the MGM Grand in Las Vegas, NV and the Superdome in New Orleans are the two leading candidates to host Mayweather vs. Pacquiao on March 13.  Or are they? 

 In a recent report by the Los Angeles Times, Staples Center has offered $20 million to host this extraveganza.  AEG's chief financial officer Dan Beckerman commented, ""We know there's interest in this fight across the world, but we're very interested and honored to make the most impressive offer possible.  It's our biggest guarantee ever, and we hope it wins the day. We wanted to push as far and as hard as we could."  In regards to the offer  from Staples Center, which is not an outdoor arena, Schaefer continues to remain silent regarding any deals for sites. 

One must also note that both Team Pacquiao and Team Mayweather reached a verbal agreement almost a week ago, but only Pacquiao has returned a signed contract. Money May has yet to submit a contract with his signature on it. Nonetheless, Schaefer claims he is still working to finalize the deal, much less consider fight locations.  Didn't both sides agree to terms of fight last week???  Is Team Mayweather having seconds thoughts about what the contract states?

Ladies and gentlemen, fight fans of all ages, the date of March 13 is right around the corner.  The holiday season is upon us and before we know it, it will be New Years.  For all big fights, there are press conferences, press tours, and at least eight weeks of training and preparation for the combatants.  Considering that we have a March 13 fight in which both parties agree to the contractual terms, it is time for all those involved to cut the nonsense when it comes to signing, sealing, and delivering this event! 

Boxingchronicles.com will continue to cover this stor closely, as the details of the venueless March 13 Pacquiao vs. Mayweather superfight unfold.

HBO Sports: Boxing's Best of 2009 schedule

Be sure to have your DVD and VCR recorders ready fight fans.  In what has become a tradition at the end of every year, HBO Sports will once again replay the most significant fights that have aired live on their network throughout the year.  From December 26 to December 30, at 11PM ET/8PM PT, HBO will replay Berto vs. Collazo, Margarito vs. Mosley, Marquez vs. Diaz, Mayweather vs. Marquez, and Pacquiao vs. Cotto.

The following are the dates on which those respective bouts will be shown.


December 26, 2009

MAYWEATHER vs. MARQUEZ

Undefeated former pound for pound king Floyd Mayweather Jr returned from a 21 month hiatus, in what can be construed as the come back of the year, to win a unanimous decision over lightweight champion Juan Manuel Marquez on September 19 in a 12-round welterweight special attraction.

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December 27, 2009
MARGARITO vs. MOSLEY

At the beginning of the year, three-division champion Shane Mosley turned back the hands of time, dominating and stopping defending welterweight champion Antonio Margarito to claim the welterweight title by way of a 9th round TKO on January 24.

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December 28, 2009
BERTO vs. COLLAZO

On January 17, WBC welterweight champion Andre Berto faced the stiffest test of his career when he took on Brooklyn's own Luis Collazo.  After 12 entertaining and hotly contested rounds, Berto emerged as the winner by way of a controversial unanimous decision.

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December 29, 2009
MARQUEZ vs. DIAZ

In what can be seen as the lightweight fight of the year, lightweight champion Juan Manuel Marquez met Juan Diaz on February 28.  Marquez knocked Diaz out in the 9th round of what had been a tremendous seasaw battle up to that point.

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December 30, 2009
PACQUIAO vs. COTTO


Pound for pound king Manny Pacquiao took on defending WBO titlist Miguel Cotto in a welterweight showdown on November 14.  Pacquiao was sensational as he stopped the Puerto Rican star in the final round of what was as scintillating performance.

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As you already know, the year 2010 will be starting off with a bang, as undefeated WBO super bantamweight champion Juan Manuel Lopez will move up to the 126lb weight class to challenge undefeated WBO featherweight champion Steve Luevano on HBO Boxing After Dark January 23.

On January 30, WBA welterweight champion Shane Mosley and undefeated WBC welterweight titlist Andre Berto will square off in an intriguing title unification bout on HBO January 30.

Diaz/Malignaggi II undercard stacked!

PRESS RELEASE: LOS ANGELES/NEW YORK, December 8 - It's the last major boxing event of 2009 and on Saturday, December 12th, Golden Boy Promotions and DiBella Entertainment are pulling out all the stops to deliver the biggest and best fight card top to bottom of the year. Headlining this stacked 12 fight card is an HBO "Boxing After Dark" doubleheader featuring the NABO junior welterweight title bout between Juan "Baby Bull" Diaz and Paulie "Magic Man" Malignaggi in the much anticipated rematch of their August 22, 2009 bout and a welterweight showdown between "Vicious" Victor Ortiz and Antonio "Tono" Diaz. But that's not all, as a star-studded array of fistic talent, including a former world champion, respected top contenders and boxing's rising stars will enter the ring in pivotal year-ending matchups.

In middleweight action scheduled for 10 rounds, Cuban southpaw sensation Erislandy Lara (8-0, 5 KO's) will face the stiffest test of his professional career when he steps up in class to take on Chicago's own Luciano Perez (17-9-1, 15 KO's).. Lara has been on a tear since turning pro in July of 2008, wowing crowds with his concussive power, blazing speed and ring savvy way beyond his years. Across the ring from him will be "El Gallo Bravo," who is coming off a big technical knockout win over Miguel Hernandez in March and would like nothing more than to put an end to Lara's string of professional perfection.

Junior lightweight Argenis Mendez (14-1, 9 KO's) has garnered a sizeable fan following in his adopted hometown of Brooklyn, New York, and he will join his fellow Brooklynite Paul Malignaggi on the card in the Windy City on December 12, as he takes on Nairobi, Kenya's Morris Chule (11-8-2, 8 KO's) in an eight round contest.

Malignaggi isn't the only fighter with fellow hometown fighters doing battle in hours preceding the main event, as a host of Juan Diaz' fellow Texans will be looking to make a positive impression on Chicago fans.

In an eight round junior welterweight bout, Houston's rising star Hylon Williams (11-0, 3 KO's) will look to keep his unblemished record clean by notching professional win number 12 when he battles it out with Tijuana's scrappy Humberto Tapia (14-11-1, 7 KO's). Williams' stable-mate, welterweight Jermell Charlo (9-0, 4 KO's), who also sits at the top of the hot prospect list, will seek to make it 10 wins before his 20th birthday when he takes on fellow unbeaten fighter Abdon Lozano (6-0, 1 KO) of Las Vegas in a six round bout.

Also hailing from the Lone Star State is Weslaco junior welterweight knockout artist Omar Figueroa (7-0, 7 KO's), who will take on 18-fight veteran Anthony Woods of Nassau, Bahamas in a four round bout. Figueroa has yet to let an opponent go past three rounds, a streak he wants to keep intact on December 12.

One of the most ferocious pound for pound punchers in boxing, former Junior Welterweight World Champion Randall Bailey (39-7, 35 KO's), returns to action in an eight round welterweight bout against one of Chicago's finest, the always tough, Germaine "Silky" Sanders (27-7, 17 KO's).

Boxing royalty will also be in the house, as the son of the legendary Thomas Hearns, middleweight contender Ronald Hearns (22-1, 17 KO's), continues on his road to the top when he squares off against Nairobi, Kenya's Shadrack Kipruto (18-13-2, 10 KO's) in an eight round battle.

Heavyweight contender Dominick Guinn (31-6-1, 21 KO's) is on his way back to the top of the division after putting together a three fight winning streak that includes early knockout victories over 27-1 Jean Francois Bergeron and 21-0 Johnnie White. The Houston native will look to make it four straight when he takes on Tucson's Charles Davis (19-17-2, 4 KO's) in a six round fight.

Sugar Land, Texas' Darlington Agha (1-0, 1 KO) will also represent Texas in a four rounder against Huntsville, Alabama's Terry Adams (0-1)

Last, but certainly not least, two local Chicago products will do battle for Windy City bragging rights when Jimmy Herrera makes his professional debut against the rugged Gustavo Palacios (2-6, 1 KO) in a four round welterweight contest.

"By Popular Demand": Diaz vs. Malignaggi II features former Three-Time Lightweight World Champion Juan "Baby Bull" Diaz taking on former Junior Welterweight World Champion Paulie "Magic Man" Malignaggi in a 12 round NABO junior welterweight rematch of their exciting August 22, 2009 bout. The co-main event will feature a 10 round welterweight showdown between top contender "Vicious" Victor Ortiz and former world title challenger Antonio Diaz. The evening of boxing is presented by Golden Boy Promotions and DiBella Entertainment in association with 8 Count Productions and sponsored by Cerveza Tecate and Dewalt Tools. The bouts will air live on HBO's "Boxing After Dark" beginning at 10:15 pm ET (9:15 pm CT) and will be aired on tape delay to the West Coast at 10:15 pm PT.

Tickets, priced at $251, $156, $86, $51 and $31, are available for purchase at ticketmaster.com or by phone at 1-312-226-5800, toll free at 1-800-745-3000 and at the UIC Pavilion Box Office (open Thursday and Friday from 9 am - 4 pm CT).

For more information regarding "By Popular Demand": Diaz vs. Malignaggi II, please visit http://www.goldenboypromotions.com/, http://www.dbe1.com/ or http://www.8countproductions.com/.

Boxingchronicles.com scorecard: Williams vs. Martinez

Here is a round by round account of how Boxingchronicles.com scored the Williams vs. Martinez fight this past weekend.  The fight was close and some of the rounds could have gone either way.  One thing is certain, this was not a 119-110 kind of a fight.



Official judge's score totals:

Julie Lederman 114-114
Lynne Carter 115-113
Pierre Benoist 119-110

Williams edges Martinez; Arreola stops Minto!

Paul Williams W12 Sergio Martinez...In what can be perceived as a last minute candidate for Fight of the Year honors, Paul Williams won  a hard-fought majority decision over WBC super welterweight champion Sergio Martinez on Saturday night at Boardwalk Hall in Atlantic City, NJ.  Both fighters scored knockdowns of each other in the opening stanza.  Williams' knockdown of Martinez was a grazing left hand to the back of the head that knocked Martinez off balance.  Martinez, on the other hand, hurt Williams with the right hook that produced his knockdown at the end of the round.

Martinez controlled the first three rounds and opened a cut over Williams' left eye, largely based on his right jab, right hook, and straight left hands.  Williams hurt Martinez at the end of the fourth round, at which point Williams momentarily seized control. In the fifth round, both fighters stood toe to toe and exchanged blows, landing clean hard shots on each other. A right left combo really caught Williams pretty cleanly, but Williams came back with a crisp combination of his own. Winning rounds five through seven, Williams began to target Martinez, who seemed to be tiring, with his long right jab.  In the eighth round Martinez appeared to be getting his second wind, as he found success with straight left hands to the body that created openings upstairs.  Martinez continued to box well behind his right jab and straight left hand. 

Williams stepped up the pressure in the closing rounds, but from my view it was Martinez who landed the bigger and cleaner shots throughout the contest.  After twelve completed rounds, the three official ringside judges scored the contest 114-114, 115-113, and an incredibly ridiculous 119-110 in favor of Williams.  HBO's unofficial ringside judge Harold Lederman scored the fight 115-113 for Williams, whereas Boxingchronicles.com had the fight scored the same way  for Martinez. 

While this commentator thought Martinez won the fight on the basis of clean punching. I am not going to argue the decision. There were some very close rounds that were difficult to judge. Heated exchanges. The first round with the two knockdowns could have gone a number of ways as well.  Round one could  very well have been scored even, but I never score even rounds unless a point is deducted from a fighter who won a given round [eg.: 9-9].


Martinez proved his worth as a world class player  in the junior middleweight and middleweight ranks, showing the viewers that he belongs on stage with an elite level top 10 pound for pound entrant. Great fight with tremendous exchanges between both of these warriors.  Williams still beats Kelly Pavlik in my estimation. Last night he was in the ring with a guy in Martinez whose style was a nightmare for him, yet he still dug down deep and managed to pulled out the victory. Pavlik probably hits harder than Martinez, and would have the proverbial puncher's chance, but his hands are not nearly as fast and his defense is nowhere near the level of Martinez.

Chris Arreola TKO4 Brian Minto...Chris Arreola successfully returned to the ring, following his TKO loss to WBC heavyweight champion Vitali Klitschko 71 days ago, to stop Brian Minto.  For the first three rounds, both guys were nailing each other with some serious leather.  By the end of the 2nd round, an ugly mouse was forming under Minto's left eye.  In the fourth round, Arreola sent Minto to his knees with a right hand.  Minto rose from the knockdown, only to engage in another fierce exchange with Arreola, but the iron-chinned heavyweight underdog was bombarded with a series of rights and lefts, which called the referee to stop the fight.  Incredible heart displayed on the part of Brian Minto.

television: HBO World Championship Boxing

Khan destroys Salita in one round!

Amir Khan TKO1 Dimitriy Salita... WBA super lightweight champion Amir Khan only needed 76 seconds to dispose of previously undefeated Dimitriy Salita.  Both men started behind their jabs, but it was Khan who immediately dropped Salita with a right hand.  Salita rose from the canvas on wobbly legs.  Khan attacked with a barrage of punches, prompting the referee Luis Pabon to stop the fight.  With the impressive win, Khan has successfully made his first title defense. Khan's technical improvements, under the tutilage of trainer Freddie Roach, has been noticable. The fight took place at Metro Radio Arena in Newcastle, England. Should HBO go through with their lightweight tournament next year, Khan would certainly be a fine fixture in that tournament.

On the undercard:

Kevin Mitchell W12 Breidis Prescott
WBO lightweight title eliminator

Pacquiao signs the contract to face Mayweather!

Pound for pound king Manny Pacquiao has signed the dotted line on the contract to face undefeated Floyd Mayweather Jr on March 13, according to AFP and ESPN's Dan Rafael.  Once Mayweather signs the contract, the fight will be signed, sealed, and delivered.  Both sides have agreed to a 50-50 purse split, which is reassuring given that both fighters were demanding 60-40, initally placing the finalization of this mega fight in serious jeopardy. 

Pacquiao vs. Mayweather will be contested at 147lbs for Pacquiao WBO welterweight title, which he won by way of 12th round TKO over Miguel Cotto last month.  Provisions in the contract stipulate that each fighter must wear eight-ounce gloves, but they are free to select the brand of gloves that they choose.  The promotional press conference for this event, in which Mayweather's name will be listed in front of Pacquiao's [eg: ['Mayweather vs. Pacquiao'], will kick off in New York  at some point in January. Pacquiao's promoter Bob Arum of Top Rank will enjoy higher billing over Mayweather's co-promoter Golden Boy Promotions.

A venue still has yet to be selected, but the candidates include the Louisiana Super Dome in New Orleans, the new Dallas Cowboys stadium in Texas, and two different sites in Las Vegas.

Williams meets Martinez tonight in Atlantic City

Originally Paul Williams was supposed to be meeting middleweight champion Kelly Pavlik at Boardwalk Hall in Atlantic City tonight, but Pavlik withdrew from his fight with Williams for the second time.  Enter WBC super welterweight champion Sergio Gabriel Martinez, who is not quite as big of a household name as Pavlik, but may very well pose a greater threat to Williams. 

Williams and Martinez will meet tonight in what is a compelling battle between two southpaws. The twelve round middleweight fight, which will take place at Boardwalk Hall in Atlantic City, is still a pretty decent save. Martinez is a far cry from your average replacement.  He poses more of a stylistic threat to Williams than Pavlik ever did. Possessing that same slippery southpaw style as Carlos Quintana, the only man to pin a loss on the record of Williams back in February of 2008, he is capable of reminding Williams of the trouble he had against Quintana.

Not to discredit Quintana, but I feel as though Williams may have underestimated Quintana when he lost to him.  Such a feeling was proven to be true when Williams met Quintana four months later, in a return engagement, to exact revenge by scoring an impressive first round knockout.  Both combatants have one common opponent; he happens to be former three-time welterweight champion Antonio Margarito. Williams seized the WBO welterweight title with a unanimous decision over Antonio Margarito in July of 2007, while Martinez lost by way of a 7th round TKO against the Tijuana Tornado in February of 2000.  To this day, the loss to Margarito remains Martinez's lone defeat.

In his last fight, Williams proved his worth in the middleweight division, outhussling former junior middleweight champion Winky Wright. Williams' overwhelming work rate kept Wright in a defensive posture for the duration of the twelve round fight, earning him  a lopsided unanimous decision.  Prior to the win over Wright, Williams scored a 8th round TKO over the rugged former two-time junior middleweight champion Verno Phillips in November of 2008.

Back in February, Martinez was held to a highly controversial majority draw against Kermit Cintron, who went to upset undefeated Alfredo Angulo in his next outting.  In what was an extremely awkward and bizzare affair, Martinez dropped Cintron with a straight left hand in the seventh round of their fight and appeared at the time to have scored a knockout. Cintron's knee didn't come out off the canvas until the referee counted ten.  The referee called off the fight, Cintron protested, and the referee allowed the fight to continue.  In any case, Martinez won at least nine clear cut rounds in that fight and was inexcusably held to a draw.

Tonight's matchup is certainly a compelling contrast of styles.  I expect Martinez's speed and ring generalship to give Williams some tough moments throughout the fight, but also believe that Williams is coming into his own at 160lbs and he showed against Wright that he could move pretty well and throw over 100 punches a round.  We'll have to see how the 160lb weight limit effects Martinez, who campaigns at 154lbs by nature.

Williams by unanimous decision.

In the co-feature, Chris Arreola returns from his TKO loss to WBC heavyweight champion Vitali Klitschko in September to take on Brian Minto.

Tonight's doubleheader airs live on HBO World Championship Boxing at 9:30 PM ET/ 6:30PM PT.

photo courtesy: boxingvid.com