Sunday, April 22, 2012

For The Fancy – Boxing Update: 22 April 2012

Dear Friends of the Fasi,
As we all know, the period of May-June is usually scheduled for the biggest fights of the year.  The exact same rings true this year as we look at a few of the fights that (should) grace our pay-per-view calender (all dates NZ);
Hopkins-Dawson II            29th April
Mayweather-Cotto              6 May
Alavarez-Mosley                  6 May
Peterson-Khan II                20 May
Pacquiao-Bradley              6 June
Ortiz-Berto II                         24 June

If you’re anything like me, you’ll be salivating over the prospect of Mayweather-Cotto and, to a lesser extent, Alvarez-Mosley next weekend.  If you’re new to the game, or simply unaware, then I advise you to definitely check ‘Mayweather-Cotto 24/7’ on Tuesday, 8pm, Sky Sport 2.  The series follows world class boxers in the lead up to their biggest bouts and Mayweather’s swagger alone is can’t miss television. 
Directly following this is ‘On Freddie Roach,’ a fly-on-the-wall documentary following perhaps the greatest boxing trainer of all time…errr….Freddie Roach.  Currently training world class fighters such as Manny Pacquiao, Amir Khan and Julio Cesar Chavez Jr, ‘On Freddie Roach’ may seem like it is lacking direction, without a strong narrative, but to get this type of insight into his life inside the ring and his battle with Parkinsons is well worth it.  The boxing world is on the verge of losing someone very special.

Home Front
Unfortunately, the NZPBA Super Middleweight title bout between Gunnar Jackson and Edwin Samy never materialized for reasons that will never be known however ‘Battle at the Box’ was still a very worthwhile card.
Top ranked New Zealand Light Heavyweight Robbie “The Butcher” Berridge stayed unbeaten and continued his path to a title in disintegrating Peter Tovio inside a round.  Berridge was clearly a couple of levels above Tovio from the get go, with the first hard left hand he landed near turning the 2-13-1 Tovio into dust.  The ensuing punches saw Tovio drop face first before his corner threw in the towel.
“The Butcher” is now scheduled to fight for the NZPBA Light Heavyweight crown on the 29th of June against an as-of-now unnamed opponent.  Rest assured, I’ll present you all with the details as they emerge.
Former NRL bad boy Jason Williams used his size and strength to muscle out a win against former New Zealand Heavyweight titlist Amosa Zinck.  Williams was able to bull Zinck against the ropes and corners all night where he landed big hooks that left Zinck a bloody mess.  Although able to stand up to this kind of punishment, Zinck was unable to mount any kind of significant offense that would keep his ever pressing foe away.  Williams scored a knockdown in the final round and scored a wide judges nod.

The Week Ahead
Amateur action dominates this weekend, with the A.B.A hosting an amateur card on Friday night.  It anyone has any further details on this please contact NZFighters.
Further north, any Wellsford boxing fans will be treated to some amateur action on Saturday night.  Contact Fili Maka ( if you’re interested.


Abner Mares (24-0-1, 13 KOs) stepped up a weight and turned up the action in gaining a wide decision win over Eric Morel (46-3, 23 KOs) at El Paso, Texas.  Although not much of a competitive fight, due to Mares skill level, Mares took the fight to his opponent’s body as well as landing right hands upstairs that drew blood.  Morel managed to land his own with neither fight ever being in any danger of being stopped.  That said, Mares continued to pour it on and only lost one round on a single judge’s scorecard.
Mares captured a vacant Junior Featherweight strap with the win, however it would appear that a fight with the biggest name in the division, Nonito Donaire, will elude him due to bad blood between their promotional companies.  Shame.
Also on the same card, and widely regarded as the best Bantamweight on the planet, Anselmo Moreno (31-1-1, 12 KOs) beat David De La Mora (24-2, 17 KOs) like he stole something until he refused to come out for the 10th round.  A right hook dropped De La Mora, who was never in the fight, in the second round and the southpaw Moreno continued to land the lead hook all evening.  De La Mora was again sent to the canvas in the sixth by a left to the body and struggled through a couple more rounds before calling it a night.
Although Moreno’s style can isn’t always entertaining to watch, there is no denying his class.  Being with the same promotional company, relative weights and now fighting on the same card, a Moreno-Mares bout looks to be on the horizon.
Middleweight Erislandy Lara (16-1-1, 11 KOs) scored three knockdowns in his one round destruction of Ronald Hearns (26-3, 20 KOs)  at Biloxi Mississippi.  This complete blowout only confirms Lara’s place among the division’s elite (as well as Junior Middleweight, where he normally resides) and goes some way to exercise the demons from his horrible decision loss robbery against Paul Williams.  All knockdowns came via Lara’s brutal southpaw left hand.
Unfortunately, performances like this do nothing for Lara’s marketability as an opponent.  He would seem too dangerous for Saul Alvarez or Miguel Cotto (trusting they win their respective bouts) and he doesn’t bring enough money to the table to fight someone like Mayweather.

The Week Ahead
47 year old dynamo Bernard “The Executioner” Hopkins (52-5-2, 32 KOs) takes on  “Bad” Chad Dawson (30-1, 17 KOs) in a rematch for Hopkins’ WBC Light Heavyweight title this Sunday (NZ time) in Atlantic City, New Jersey.  Their first match last October ended in controversy as Dawson lifted Hopkins off the ground with his should and dumped him on the mat, injuring Bernard and forcing a stop to the contest.  This was originally ruled a knockout win for Dawson until the commission, rightly, changed the result to a No Contest.  Although Hopkins was allowed to keep his title, and has generally defied his age for the longest time, he looked every bit of 47 and was fortunate that the bout ended how it did.  This bout is being screened on Sky Box Office.
With the mega bout between Yuriorkis Gamboa and Juan Manuel Lopez being derailed by stupidity and defeat, the Featherweight division is now wide open as both of the aforementioned are tied up in various legal hooha and their returns look certain to be north of 126 pounds.  WBC champion Jhonny Gonzalez (51-7, 45 KOs) defends against Elio Rojas (23-1, 14 KOs) in Cancun, Mexico.  Gonzales had a bumper 2011, capturing a strap and stopping all four of his foes including hard-as-nails Roger Mtagwa (who took Lopez to the wire in October 2010).  Former titlist Rojas, hasn’t got the experience, or the punch, of his opponent and this bout will be a serious step up in class.NZFighters article found here

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