Dominic Breazeale, coming off a KO loss to Heavyweight kingpin Anthony Joshua, appeared to be living the good life. He came in with juggs – Can’t Stop, Won’t Stop, Golden Corral – always a good sign. His opponent, Izu Ugonoh, a black Polak, famous for competing on some eastern bloc version of Dancing With The Stars. A classic Man Tits Vs. 6 Pack Abs Bama Brawl.
Saturday’s fight between Jermall Charlo and Julian Williams was built as a highly competitive matchup between two competitors primed to challenge for supremacy among the pseudo division currently dominated by Canelo Alvarez. As the bookmakers had it Williams was a slight favorite, and the late money followed this trend. The fight however, did not follow suite, with Williams being dramatically KO’ed in an otherwise competitive contest. One should think of Amir Khan, when imagining the seamless shift between awe-inspiring combinations and utter vulnerability.
As is typical of most great match-ups, Charlo and Williams demonstrated a palpable level mutual disdain for each other. Observers of online trash talk will know that Williams has gained a reputation in the division for consistently sniping his fellow 154 lbs. travelers. This tactic can be highly effective, particularly for a fighter such as Williams, who are forced to take lead in their own branding. What is also clear is that Williams slights were greatly effective in penetrating Charlo’s psyche, to the point they continued to linger even after the match had concluded. Eventually seen by Charlo’s refusal to shake Williams hand after winning via a brutal and beautiful 5th round KO.
This lack of sportsmanship was not missed by the crowd, whom instinctively returned a chorus of boos that initially seemed to energize the flexing Charlo as he made his way to each corner of the ring yelling from the ropes “Whose the fuckin’ champ now”. Watching from my home it was so refreshing to witness boxer double down on villainy, and cherish the role of heel that is utterly missing in the post Mayweather era.
But all of this was ruined the moment he started to walk it back with Jim Gray.
It is my opinion that Charlo, and fighters of his ilk, should have never apologize; There can only be so many happy go lucky Manny Pacquiaos in a generation. I say this because apologies, particularly when they are insincere, or uttered from a guy whose chest tattoo reads “Lions Only”, are in essence a pathetic acquiesce to the increasingly stupid fan mentality that athletes owe viewers some patronizing attempt at civility.
At what point are these assholes going to realize they are not tuned into to watch Boutros Boutros-Ghali make some call for peace at the UN. For those who are still confused please consider that you a literally watching two shirtless gladiators willfully attempt destroy one another. And if you still don’t get it please kindly shut your fucking mouths because you really don’t get it. You assholes are the reason Charlo felt obligated to apologize. A point that anyone who watched this past election cycle should know to be tiresome and invalid. When they say ‘You made us upset’ its only sensible to respond with ‘Fuck You’. Fans, and people more generally want villains. They need someone to hate, no matter how reluctant they are to admit it. In boxing the clearest demonstration of profit from villainy is seen through the career of Mayweather who has generated more money at the cost of remarkably little damage. People tune in for the guy who gives a middle finger when he is called to apologize, not the blubbering beta male that hires a PR team and that holds a press conference to explain away the reason he fucked his secretary.
(On a side note, just look what these assholes did to Tiger Woods)
Charlo may have missed his opportunity to double down, but that’s okay. Hopefully he has recognized the crowds reaction to his apologetic attempts as insincere, and will take them from now on as a call towards weakness. From now on Charlo, double down, and never, ever, apologize.
And if you need a point of reference I recommend you follow the example of the Iron Sheik.
When Dereck Chisora threw a table at Dillian Whyte it was about all that one should have exspected from the self-styled Del Boy. Chisora is nuts, hes proven he’s nuts, and to some degree his being nuts is why he is still getting high profile fights his match-up on Saturday.
This match-up pits the consistently entertaining, yet unsatisfied Chisora against the younger and slightly favored Whyte for WBC International heavyweight title. Chisora to his credit has been in with the elite of the Heavyweight division (Vitali Klitschko, David Haye, Tyson Fury, Kubat Pulev) although in every instance fallen slightly short.
Whyte is still gunning for a rematch against Anthony Joshua, who also fights on Saturday against heavy underdog Eric Molina.
I see it as an even fight that should be interesting in the event that it reaches the later rounds. Should this happen Chisora could potentially have an advantage in that Whyte has never gone beyond the 10th round, which coincidentally was in his last fight.
Prediction/Wishful Thinking: Chisora by late KO.
All said here is the press conference chaos. I recommend watching until the end to enjoy the hilarity of a bookish Brit calmly reasons with Chisora that there was nothing to worry about, they would be able to fight each other tomorrow.
It should also be known that this was not the first time Chisora lost his shit at a press conference.
“I’m gonna shoot David Haye. He fuckin’ glassed me.”
Dereck Chisora Vs. David Haye
Last Saturday Andre Ward won a unanimous decision over Sergey Kovalev, with all three judges scoring the bout 114-113. This result puts Ward in a precarious position as it begs for an immediate rematch against an opponent nobody fight twice.
Prior to the fight most ringside observers had it as a competitive match up which Ward would likely win through superior ring generalship and technique, the only potential equalizer being Kovalev’s world class power.
But from the opening bell the larger and more powerful Kovalev asserted a domineering presence never seen before in a professional ring that included Ward. I can scarcely recall individual rounds which Ward has given up since he entered the Super Six Boxing Championship; maybe enough to fit on one hand between Mikkel Kessler, Sakio Bika and Carl Froch combined. All which made the first half of the fight (I scored it a Kovalev sweep through round 6) particularly surprising. This domination was highlighted by a second round knockdown, which painted Wards face with the look that seemed to indicate he knew he was in with something special.
Following the knockdown Ward did battle back valiantly. First through the roughhouse tactics of tackling Kovalev in round three, and then later by seeming to win a series of rounds between 7-10. And although he still did not do enough in my opinion to win the fight, he demonstrated the best of what is uniquely inspirational about boxing, in its ability to show tremendous resolve in the face of adversary.
Also credit is due to Virgil Hunter, who I thought did a fantastic job keeping Ward focused while reaffirming his confidence. Particularly after the knockdown in which he seemed to encourage Ward to stand up to his bully, and prior to the 12th and final round in which he gave an impassioned speech that seemed to demonstrate the unique bond the two share.
All said Kovalev is not a guy who people should fight twice (if at all), just ask Jean Pascal. I would have said ask Roman Simakov, but you can’t because Kovalev killed him. Yes, you read that right, Sergey Kovalev has killed at least one person that we know of, and he did it with twelve ounce gloves on in a legally sanctioned event. A point that seems to have had little effect on Kovalev’s killer instinct.
In the end I would encourage Andre Ward to take a long vacation in the time being. And when he returns he should think long and hard before getting back in the ring with Sergey Kovalev.