Friday, 22 November 2013

The Cobra Vs St George - My Preview.

The Cobra Vs St George - Sat 23rd November.

Almost time for the words to stop
Tomorrow night the much awaited fight between "rivals" Froch and Groves takes place in Manchester. I use the term "rivals" lightly as many, myself included don't think they are anywhere near rivals...

Carl Froch is the current IBF and WBA World Super-middleweight Champion with a record of won 31 (KO 22) + lost 2 (KO 0). He has been in with and beaten the very best in the world.

George Groves is the current WBA Intercontinental Super-middleweight Champ and former Commonwealth title holder with a record of won 19 (KO 15) + lost 0 (KO 0), who hasn't been in the ring with anyone of the class of Froch before, it will be a massive step up for him.

Groves, like Froch before him has been calling out and hounding the top ranked British super-middleweight to fight. Unlike Froch, Groves has been granted his wish for a fight, Calzaghe never fought Froch.

The lead up for this fight has resulted in many insults and words being thrown at each other. An episode of ringside was especially lively with Groves saying "I'm ready. I'm more than ready. Carl, I don't think you're going to show me anything different and if you come out and show me anything you've shown before you're in for a big, big shock and you're in for some trouble....I'll put this chump to sleep. We'll see. I will knock Froch out. He won't hear that final bell." 

Brave words indeed from a fighter with only 19 fights, who has never been in a fight at this level before and whose trainer, (The much admired and respected Adam Booth), left him almost before preparations had begun meaning Paddy Fitzpatrick had to step in. Also calling Froch a chump was probably not the wisest thing to do.

Groves is very full of confidence and that is too be admired, however I think over confidence can also be a weakness. Groves said in yesterday's press conference "I'm going to come out and meet him in the middle.I'm going to win the jab exchanges and I'm going to hit you with two right hands just to let you know I can do it whenever I want. Second round I'm going to do the same, but hit you with more right hands. Third round I'm going to push you onto your back foot. You're going to have to see what's coming next."

If he does try to do what he says he wants to do, he'll not last long, Froch is too strong, too powerful and far too experienced for Groves to have any success.

Compared to the all talk build up Groves has taken to this fight, Froch has been a little more subdued, only responding too rather than initiating exchanges of words between the two fighters. Froch had this too say yesterday - "He's had a lot to say and it's been quite embarrassing and pathetic, to be honest. My experience at top level, my punching power and Groves's inability to take a punch are the reasons he's not going to do what he says he's going to do. He's going to run for his life, jab and grab and try to get through it, he's not going to stand and fight. I'm really hoping he does have a fight with me because that's exactly what we want. It will be a big, big mistake, he's going to get knocked out. You're in a world of trouble, you'll learn some respect. You're getting annihilated on Saturday night, you know it and everyone knows it. I can see it in your eyes that you know you're going to get flattened."

Personally I think Froch is absolutely spot on with his thoughts on how Groves is going to fight. There is no possible way Groves can try to meet Froch in the middle and trade blows, he will be KO'd within 4 rounds if he tries that. On the other hand even if he tries to jab and move, he will eventually get caught with a strong shot from Froch that will lead to the end. Groves is not known for taking a good shot and will have memories of being dropped by Froch in a sparring session some years back.

All the talking is almost done now and the matter will be sorted in the ring.

I wish them both well...

Saturday, 26 October 2013

Browne Vs Towers - Heavyweight Commonwealth Eliminator.

"Big Daddy" Vs "The Inferno" - 2nd November, Hull.

Richard Towers - Lucas Browne

Next Saturday will hopefully be 3rd time lucky for both Browne and Towers to fight for the chance to face David Price for his Commonwealth Title, with this fight having been postponed twice before, it is a fight I am very much looking forward too.

6′ 4″ Browne brings a record of 17 fights, 17 wins, 15 by KO and is currently ranked 15th by the WBC. His last fight was in July against Travis Walker, a fight that Lucas won in the 7th after dropping Walker 3 times, however he was dropped himself in the first round.

6′ 8″  Towers has a record of 14 fights, 14 wins, 11by KO and is the former EBU- EU heavyweight champ. His last fight was against Tony Gregory for that belt back in June 2012. Many think that ringrust will play an issue with Richard having been out of the ring for so long, however having been busy as a sparring partner with both Wladimir Klitschko and David Haye, I'm not sure that will be a major problem.

Outside the ring both Lucas and Richard are good friends and have sparred several times with each other, however come fight night that will be put to one side as they fight to get that shot at Price. Lucas had this to say to V2Boxing about the bout - “Towers was a complete gentleman when I was last here and we got along very well. I don't want to be fighting Towers but we both understand it has to be done and this is the sport we have chosen. We sparred a few times and I'm sure we have both taken something from those exchanges, but in saying that, it was a while ago now and I know I've improved ten fold from then so it will be interesting. I'm pumped to finally get this fight because I want the Commonwealth title. I don't really care where the fight is, as long as I get a chance to fight for the belt and get a chance to show the world what I can do. I've got a decent following over here and I'm very thankful to the UK fans for getting behind me like they have. When it comes to fight time it doesn't matter where I am, I'm there to do what I do best”.

Matt Clarke (Browne's manager) had this to say to Hatton Promotions, (Ricky Hatton is the promotor for both fighters) - "It certainly is third time lucky, I believe we're going to see a career best performance from Lucas. He's preparing extremely well, without any distractions and he's ready for this next step. His fan base in the UK and Ireland is growing rapidly and a good performance here might see him face defending Commonwealth champion David Price in his next bout."

Richard Towers is certainly looking forward to the fight saying - "I have been hanging in limbo since the Australia fight was called off. I was supposed to fight Johann Duhaupas and that didn't happen so I'm excited about the fight with Lucas being on again. I don't want to slag Lucas off because he's a good guy and I consider him a friend but I think he is getting carried away with the stars a little  because he's banging these guys out"

Whether the winner of this fight will actually face David Price in 2014 for the title is very much up for debate and we will have to wait to see what Price's next move is going to be.

This is certainly going to be an interesting fight and is a clash of styles. Browne goes forward at every opportunity, whilst Towers, likes to use his reach to keep others at bay. With a 4" height advantage Towers is going to attempt to use his reach and his jab to keep the big hitting Lucas at bay, however I feel if Lucas can get inside and work to the body he will get some great success, eventually he'll get to the chin of Towers and that will be that. 

So yes, whilst this is a tight fight on paper I believe that Lucas will have too much power for Towers and whilst the loser of this fight will have a tricky road back it certainly won't be the end of the road, not yet...

I wish them both well.

Saturday, 28 September 2013

Deontay Wilder Vs Nicolai Firtha. Stepping up???

Deontay Wilder Vs Nicolai Firtha.

 Will Wilder EVER Step UP?

It was announced this week that Wilder’s next fight will be on Oct 26th on the undercard of the Hopkins Vs Furat against Nicolai Firtha (21-10-1, 8 KO’s).

As you can see from his record Firtha has TEN losses. Wilder will be having his 30th pro fight against Firtha and is yet to step up to a level that could be classed anywhere near respectable.

Whilst Firtha is a tough cookie, he is just a journeyman and the level of fighter that Wilder should have fought two years ago, not now as he talks about taking control of the heavyweight scene. In fact Tyson Fury fought Firtha 2 years ago in his 15th fight and beat him in the 5th round. I take Wilder to win within 2 rounds.

I fail to see why his management have set this fight up. They have said that they couldn’t find any other opponent at this short notice, yet Kevin Johnson has said he would have taken the fight had he received a call. The call never came...

Wilder’s career and record is being carefully manufactured whilst it will and does look good on paper, if you look at the detail the quality of opponent has been awful. Biggest names on his CV are Harrison and Liakhovich. Not names that strike fear into any top 15 heavyweight in the world. However a record of 29 fights, 29 wins, 29 KOs will cause headlines and create a great deal of interest, meaning money and as well all know money talks!

Next year has to be the year that Wilder steps up. He has to start fighting top 20 ranked fighters, all these journeymen are OK when starting out but not after 30 fights and 5 years in the pro ranks. I’m pretty sure that the thought of beating Lamar Clarks record of 44 consecutive Kos has crossed his mind, but there is a bigger picture here. Wilder’s fans will tell you “BombSquad” is going to clean up in 2014, well not by fighting journeymen he won’t.

One possible opponent for Wilder could be David Price. Price told Ringside on SKY “I’d fight Deontay Wilder in a heartbeat. I know he’s a ferocious puncher, but so am I. I’m a big puncher, and I’d definitely fight Deontay Wilder.” Who would win is a debate for another time, it would raise the profile in Europe of Wilder, however I wonder how he’ll fair when he is eventually pushed past 4/5 rounds which he would be against a Chisora or an Adamek, would he have the stamina to continue or would he simply fade and get stopped?

If he doesn’t start to step it up then he may find his world crashing in around him leaving him nowhere to go.

I wish him well...

Saturday, 21 September 2013

Chisora - Looking to the future.

Chisora – Hoping for another chance...

This evening at The Copper Box in London, Dereck Chisora can take a huge step towards having another shot at the world title when he fights Edmund Gerber in a 12 round fight for the vacant European Heavyweight Title. First he wants a rematch with the winner of the Haye Vs Fury fight – (he has fought them both).

Gerber is a 25 year old German with a record of 24 fights, 23 wins (14 KO) and 1 loss. His one loss coming to Michael Sprott in Dec last year. 

Despite his apparent lack of experience vs Chisora’s he is full of confidence - “Chisora only knows one gear. The key to beating him is simple: impress him with your punching power and looseness. Over the rounds, he then will run out of ideas. And when he starts risking too much, I will knock his lights out. I feel more than ready and want to take the next step in my career. This is the chance I have been waiting for. Now it is time to take this big opportunity. My whole team is confident that I will beat Chisora and so am I.” 

On the likely hostile atmosphere he is likely to feel from the London crowd - “I will take no notice of them. In fact, they can boo me as loud as they want. At the end of it all, it will be me who will be holding the European belt and it will be the crowd who will be stunned into silence.”

Chisora is the Jekyll and hyde character of world boxing the man that has spat at one Klitschko and slapped another, and was supposed to have fought Deontay Wilder back in June before Wilder’s past caught up with him and he was denied a visa. He has been to anger management classes while his British licence was suspended and as a result was given it back.

His record reads 21 fights, 17 wins (11 KOs) with 4 losses. He has been in the ring with Haye, Fury, Helenius, Vitali Klitschko and top contender Malik Scott. He has a whole wealth of experience and has fought some of the best heavyweights around, a lesson some others could learn if they want credibility.

Dereck Chisora: "Beating Gerber is another step closer to the Klitschko brothers and nothing is going to stop me winning the European title. I'm fit, lean and mean and ready to do the business against Gerber who is a good fighter, but not in my class. I really want to do a great job on him, really smash him up and show that I deserve a shot at the Klitschkos."

However the Klitschkos may have to wait. Chisora: "To be honest with you, and people shouldn't take this the wrong way, but I think there are better fights in Great Britain than us [Haye, Fury, Chisora] going to challenge for the world title, There's a good mix with Tyson Fury, David Haye and myself. It's alright boxing for the world title and everybody just trying to go and dance with the K2 promotions music. 

Let's do our own thing and when they're ready to give up the titles then people can fight for those world titles. Fighters are making money when they're not in world title fights. Why should I say I want to box for a world title when the Klitschkos are trying to slave you for the world titles you're fighting for. 

I don't like those guys the more I talk about them the more I get upset."

Whoever Chisora fights next, he must concentrate on tonight as the European Title is a sought after belt and is seen as one worth having by future title challengers. His previous attempt at winning this belt resulting in him being robbed by a hometown decision Vs Helenius, who doesn’t seem to have moved onwards with his career, although some injuries haven’t helped.

I hope the fighter that fought Klitschko turns up tonight and not the fighter who fought Avila at Rule Britannia in April. That fighter will lose tonight and another loss on Chisora’s record could result in him becoming another journeyman and never really fulfilling his ambition or utilising his immense talent.

My feelings are that he will have too much power and experience for Gerber and will grind him down to win by stoppage around the 6th or 7th round.

I wish them both well...

Saturday, 24 August 2013

Four Big Fights - Sat 24th August.

Four fights I'm looking forward to tonight.

Juergen Braehmer Vs Stefano Abetangelo.
European Light Heavyweight Title.

Arthur Abraham Vs Wilberforce Shihepo.

Gilberto Ramirez Sanchez Vs Julio Cesar Garcia

Kubrat Pulev Vs Tony Thompson.

Four very good fights. Braehmer has 31 KOs from his 40 wins, started off as a supper middle before deciding to step up. I see him winning with another KO tonight by the 6th round.

Arthur Abraham has his comeback fight tonight after losing his WBO title to Stieglitz in his last fight. Shihepo is a difficult fighter to come back against and Abraham will need to be on top of his game to win. I think he will.

The phenomenal rise of Ramirez Sanchez continues. 25 fights, 25 wins, 20 KOs. This lad is only 22 and is going to be a huge, huge star IMO. A step up in class for him tonight, but I see another KO win for him.

The most interesting fight of the night for me is Pulev Vs Thompson. Pulev is one of the best HWs outside of the Klitschkos IMO and is a very tough cookie, having said that Thompson has only been beaten by Wlad and has a huge heart as shown in his last fight Vs Price when he was almost KO'd at the beginning of the fight before coming back to win by stoppage. This fight is "unofficially" being billed as an eliminator for a shot at Wladimir, however I think the winner of this will fight the winner of Haye Vs Fury in an official eliminator. It is very close to call this fight, I think I can see Thompson winning on points, but we will tell.

I wish them all well...

Monday, 29 July 2013

David Price - What Next?

David Price - What Next?

David Price - Some decisions to make..
Having seen his attempt at trying to avenge a defeat to Tony Thompson turn to dust it must seem like a very lonely world to David Price at the moment. Even 3 weeks after he was stopped in the 5th, the future will very likely seem uncertain and he'll view it with a lot of trepidation.

So what next? What can he do to turn those 2 Thompson defeats into "glitches" on his path to world glory? Lets not forget he is still the British and Commonwealth Champion..

A lot of people are questioning his chin. This is a myth. He wasn't hit flush on the chin in the first fight, but just under the ear. Anybody who has been hit in this area will know the effect it has on your balance and the equilibrium of the body. Tyson Fury was put on his backside by a blown up cruiserweight, does he have a suspect chin?

Others are questioning his heart. Again this is a myth. To want, demand in fact, a rematch with Thompson to try to avenge that first defeat showed a lot of heart and a lot of courage. You can however, have all the heart in the world but if you have no gas in the tank then it means absolutely nothing and that is the first thing he needs to do.

Before any talk of possible opponents, Price must sort out his conditioning. He must ensure he is able to fight beyond 6 rounds without being gassed. He has power and precision but a lack of stamina will mean he may as well not bother. 

He also needs to sort out "his" team. Is it Maloney and Smith or Lewis and TeamLennox? I don't think there can be a mixture of the two. Different aims and techniques will result in Price being totally confused going into his next fight just as he was coming out for the 5th against Thompson - his corner telling him one thing, Lewis hollering something else from ringside. Some tough decisions need to be made.

Possible opponents need to be looked at carefully. I've seen talk of fighting Lucas Browne or Manuel Charr when he returns to the ring. These fights would be far too risky as a "return" fight. On a couple of undercards Vs Lewison or the like away from Liverpool would be a good starting point. It will take a lot of hard work mentally to get himself back to where he was confidence wise 3 fights ago.

I wish him well...

Friday, 5 July 2013

Price Vs Thompson - A Repeat Performance?


David Price has a chance of redeeming himself in his rematch Vs Tony Thompson on Saturday night. Anything other than a win for Price and it could be the start of the long and lonely road to "journeyman land".

In the first fight, a fight I along with 95% of other people thought would be an easy night's work for Price, he was hit with a shot in the 2nd that hit a button that made his legs not work. That happens and has happened to the best, ask Lennox Lewis! I'll come back to Mr Lewis the legend later.

David Price has a record of 16 fights, 15 wins (13KOs) with 1 loss. Price was talked about as the next big thing in world boxing, a man who would be able to take on and dethrone the Klitschko brothers, then came that fateful night in Liverpool last Feb, when the outsider, the old timer, the man with the name that would look good on Price's record, did the unthinkable and KO'd Price! 

That defeat sent a few shock-waves through the European heavyweight scene and changed things completely in Britain with Tyson Fury the major beneficiary of what happened that night.

With hindsight was it really that much of a shock? Price's fight before Thompson was against Matt Skelton, Thompson's previous fight was against Wlad Kilitschko. Thompson went into that fight with only 3 losses, 2 against Kiltschko, 1 when he was a rookie. He was experienced and no mug, looking back he should have been the favourite or at least not the rank outsider the bookies had him as.

Hindsight - What a wonderful super power...

Frank Maloney & David Price after the Thompson loss..

How will this rematch play out? 

Thompson has been very bullish in his comments - "David lacks knowledge and he can't have changed much in four months. He still has many weaknesses, and it might be a different one which I choose to expose on Saturday night.

We've come over here to repeat the first performance but we want to do it in even better fashion this time. I want there to be no doubt that I'm the better fighter. I haven't just taken this fight for the money. 

I've had offers where I could have made more money but the fans wanted to see if it was a fluke, if David is all they thought he was going to be and as a competitor, I wanted to prove that I'm the better fighter.
'For me, this is an easy fight." 

Price has been over to Canada to have help/training with Lennox Lewis. A legend of the ring who knows how to come back from a setback and who is ranked as a top 3 ATG has been advising and helping Price.

Lewis has big hopes for David and believes he can get over the upset of losing to Thompson in their first fight -

"I fought for the glory. David Price fights for the glory. He has learned a lot during our weeks together in Canada and back here. It’s not easy to become heavyweight champion of the world. It requires determination, the will, the desire. Price seems to have the desire and determination. 

He fights for the glory - not the money."

I think this fight is going to start off with a cagey Price Vs a bit of a gung ho Thompson. Thompson wanting to repeat his previous result, Price trying to stop history repeating itself whilst trying to counter punch. 

If there is no KO in the first 2 rounds I see it settling down with a Price win within 5 rounds.

I wish them both well...