Connect with us

Feature Articles

I Like Roy Jones To Beat Floyd Mayweather

Published

on

Jones vs Tarver001During a recent interview, Roy Jones Jr claimed that Manny Pacquiao would be a tougher task for him than Floyd Mayweather. Jones, a former four weight world champion [middleweight, super middleweight, light heavyweight and heavyweight], claimed that if weight, size and age were in line, he would have the perfect style to neutralise Floyd Mayweather. Manny Pacquiao's style however, he said, would be far more difficult for him to crack.

“The young Roy Jones, would probably beat Floyd Mayweather, because basically Mayweather has the same style as James Toney. My style is different to theirs. But when you come back and start talking about Manny Pacquiao, he's a whole different animal. He's a southpaw who throws bombs. You've got to survive his power first, then you deal with him. That's still left to be seen. Of course with my size I'll beat him, but if I was in his weight class, that would be a good fight to see, ” said Jones.

So how would hypothetical contests involving Roy Jones and Floyd Mayweather and Manny Pacquiao actually look then?

Part 1. Roy Jones versus Floyd Mayweather

By claiming that Mayweather has the same style as Toney, Jones is insinuating that Mayweather, a counterpuncher like Toney, would be using a lot of upper body movement to evade punches. Jones is also aware that both Toney and Mayweather share the same defensive shell – chin tucked in behind their left shoulder- which they like to roll and counter from. During their fight in 1994, Jones was able to use his speed and movement to neutralise Toney's defense. Jones' style was very much his own during his prime. Using his legs, Jones always kept the fight at his distance. Often backing up, Jones would lure his opponent in, then attack in lightning quick bursts. This style proved to be Toney's downfall. By feinting Toney into his defensive shell, Jones, using his superior footwork, was able to step around Toney and attack from a variety of different angles. Because he stood flat footed and because of Jones' hand and foot speed advantage, Toney was unable to adjust.

While there are obvious similarities between Mayweather and Toney, there are also some differences.

Firstly, Mayweather, like Jones used to be, is a rare athletic talent blessed with A+ handspeed and reflexes. As a result, Mayweather can afford to rely on physical gifts, as well as craft, whereas Toney – who possessed decent hand speed early in his career – relied purely on technique. Secondly, Mayweather's foot speed, while not as fast as it once was, is still very quick. Toney on the other hand, was often exposed in the footspeed department. As a result of his tendency to over do his defense, Toney would often go long periods without letting his hands go, whereas Mayweather's transition from defense to offense was seamless. Mayweather's defense is there to set up his offense.

Personally, I feel Roy Jones would have the stylistic advantage over Floyd Mayweather. By evidence, Mayweather always looked better against aggressive types who chose to press the attack, rather than sit back [Corrales, Gatti and Hatton]. Likewise, prime Jones also looked good when he allowed his opponent to be the aggressor [Pazienza, Brannon and Ruiz]. However, some of Jones' best wins came against supreme ring technicians, albeit some of them were past their prime [Toney, Hopkins, Hill, Mccallum and Reggie Johnson.]

It's difficult to tell who had the faster hands of the two. Jones threw more power shots at speed, whereas Floyd threw his jab more. Because Jones was the larger of the two, and was carrying more weight, I’d say Jones had the faster hands in a pound for pound sense. While there's not much to separate them in terms of hand speed, the superior footspeed belongs to Jones. Jones could move around the ring quicker than any fighter I've ever seen.

While both fighters are essentially defensive minded fighters, Roy should be considered the more offensive minded of the two as he would often take more risks when attacking than Floyd. As a result, Mayweather is deemed a more cautious fighter than Prime Jones was. Mayweather prefers to throw one punch at a time, primarily the straight right hand, which he only allows to be released with any frequency once his opponents’ primary weapon is taken away. Jones' primary weapon was his mobility. In order for Floyd to take Roy's mobility away, he would have to fight a far more aggressive fight than he is accustomed to. Mayweather would have to be more aggressive and try and cut the ring off.

Look at Jean Pascal against Chad Dawson, which is a similar matchup stylistically. Dawson was forced into taking the lead against Pascal, who, because of his in and out style of boxing, had Dawson on the defensive every time he leapt in with his combinations.

A defensive counterpuncher will always struggle with unpredictable, sporadic offense.

By being out of range, and launching an ambush, you are surprising the counterpuncher, hence his first motion will be to cover up and defend. In theory, if the counterpuncher does not know what type of attack is coming next, you are in essence giving him nothing to counter.

No doubt, Mayweather is the superior technician of the two, but it's hard to see past Mayweather's low risk taking. Jones on the other hand would place a lot more emphasis on offense. Roy would be throwing his combinations whilst moving. As a result, his attack would be very creative and unpredictable. Jones could lead with hard and fast left hooks to the body followed by a right hand up top or vice versa. If Mayweather chose to press the attack, Jones would be backing up, then leap in at every angle imaginable. Mayweather, a counterpuncher, would be spending too much time trying to evade Jones’ offense, namely his left hook lead, as opposed to attempting to initiate his own.

Technically, Floyd is the better defender. His ability to block, slip and counter in close is breathtaking. Yet ask yourself this; Who have you seen hit with the cleaner shots, Roy Jones from 1994-2004? Or Floyd Mayweather from 1999 until present day?

It's easy to forget just how good Roy Jones actually was defensively. We did not know how bad Jones' chin was, as a direct result of his legs being so good. His legs, as opposed to Mayweather's upper body, were HIS defense. During his prime, I cannot name a single occasion where I saw Jones hit clean, let alone hurt, whereas Floyd Mayweather has been hit clean and hurt on numerous occasions during his best years [Castillo, Corley and Mosley].

If I had to pick an area in which Mayweather would have the significant advantage, it would have to be in close. I regard Floyd Mayweather as the best inside fighter in boxing at the moment. Just like when Pernell Whitaker proved he was better than Julio Cesar Chavez in close during their bout, Floyd Mayweather proved his inside mastery during his undressing of formidable inside fighter Ricky Hatton. While Jones was no slouch on the inside, it is this area where his best asset, his legs, would be ineffective, and Mayweather's best asset, his technical skills, would be very effective. If the fight was fought in the pocket, in a conventional way, like Kalambay versus McCallum or Barrera versus Juan Manuel Marquez, then I'd favour Floyd.

Unfortunately for Floyd, this would not be the destination of the action.

On a personal note, my favourite fighter of all time is Roberto Duran. Apart from being one of the best aggressors in boxing history, I also think he was one of the best ring technicians ever. In his first fight with Ray Leonard, Duran dominated the action with his superior craft in close. Leonard could not match him in the skills department. His handspeed was nowhere to be seen. Contrast this fight with the rematch, and you see an entirely different fight. Duran's superior technical skills were rendered useless by Leonard's foot speed and movement. Duran could not get close enough to Leonard in order to do what he did best.

While the disparity in foot speed would not be as huge as it was between Leonard and Duran, there would be enough of it in Jones' favour to take a lot of Mayweather's best work away from him. Opponents that stand in front of Floyd, like Gatti, Mosley and even Juan Manuel Marquez [uncharacteristically in their fight] will get eaten up by his vast spectrum of skills. From a pure boxing perspective, there have not been many better, if any, than Floyd Mayweather.

However, Roy Jones was arguably the most unique talent in boxing history. He had the boxing brain to maximise his athletic talent, which resulted in Jones' style being very hard to decipher. Yes, Sergio Martinez has a similar sort of style to Jones, and yes, I'd pick Floyd Mayweather over Martinez at 154 if ever they decide to face each other.

Again, ask yourself, could you see Roy Jones struggling with Matthew Macklin the way Martinez did? Neither can I.

Consequently, I would have to agree with Roy Jones' assumption that he would hold the advantages over Floyd Mayweather, both physically and stylistically.

Mayweather is a tremendous talent, a fighter whose style translates to more longevity than that of Jones'. Once Jones' other-worldly speed of hand and more importantly, speed of foot had diminished, he did not have the technical skills to fall back on, whereas once Mayweather's physical gifts fade, an all time great defensive skill set will see him ok.

But when it comes to both fighters at their best, for my money, Roy Jones Jr, would have proved to be better than Floyd Mayweather.

Part 2 [ Jones versus Pacquiao] coming soon….

Comment on this article

Feature Articles

Charr-Oquendo Scuttled When Charr Tests Positive; the Odious WBA Saves Face

Published

on

Manuel Charr

Manuel Charr and Fres Oquendo were scheduled to fight in Cologne, Germany, later this month (Sept. 29). Charr would be defending his WBA world heavyweight title, the “regular” version of it, not the “super” version which rests in the hands of Anthony Joshua.

The bout was quickly cancelled when it was revealed that Charr had tested positive for two banned anabolic steroids. The test was performed by VADA, the anti-doping agency identified with Las Vegas neurologist Dr. Margaret Goodman.

The 33-year-old Charr, born in Lebanon but a resident of Germany since the age of three, won the belt in his last start with a unanimous decision over 281-pound Russian behemoth Alexander Ustinov in Oberhausen, Germany. The title was vacant. Charr won the right to fight for it with a 10-round decision over Albanian slug Sefer Seferi. The victory over Ustinov elevated his record to 31-4. He has been stopped three times, by Vitali Klitschko, Alexander Povetkin, and Mairis Briedis.

If it wasn’t for bad luck, as the old saying goes, Fres Oquendo wouldn’t have any luck at all. For various reasons, his fights keep falling out. Before long he’ll be drawing social security. Well, not exactly, but he turned 45 in April and hasn’t fought in more than four years.

Oquendo has competed for this belt before. In his last ring appearance in July of 2014, he lost a majority decision to Russia’s Ruslan Chagaev in Grozny, Russia. As a concession for taking the fight on short notice, Team Oquendo negotiated a rematch clause in the contract, but a shoulder injury prevented Fres from activating it. When the injury healed, he had to go to court to compel Chagaev to fulfill his obligation. But then the Russian retired, muddling the water.

The WBA was legally bound to find Oquendo a title fight and in desperation turned to ancient Shannon Briggs. But the Oquendo-Briggs fight, scheduled for June 3 of last year in Hollywood, Florida, fell out when Briggs’ urine specimen showed an abnormally high level of testosterone.

Fres Oquendo was dogged by bad luck even before these recent developments. His professional record, 37-8, is somewhat misleading as six of his eight defeats were razor-thin including his 2003 setback to Chris Byrd and his 2006 setback to Evander Holyfield. However, Oquendo, something of a cutie, was never a crowd-pleaser and in none of his narrow defeats was there a public clamor for a rematch.

The cancellation of Charr-Oquendo cuts the World Boxing Association out of a sanctioning fee, but one would think that the WBA honchos are actually rather pleased by this turn of events. The fight, more precisely the WBA’s world title imprimatur, would have brought more unwanted publicity to the Panama-based organization.

ESPN’s Dan Rafael, who has the largest platform of any boxing writer, has been a persistent critic of the organization which once recognized 41 “champions” in 17 weight classes. In 2009, Rafael wrote, “(The WBA) has become such an absolute farce that even somebody like me, who follows boxing closely, sometimes has a hard time keeping track of all the nonsensical so-called world title belts the WBA has been doling out at an alarming rate. It almost reminds me of the ladies at Costco who hand out various samples on a busy Saturday afternoon.”

Rafael took note when WBA president Gilberto Mendoza promised to cull the herd by eliminating “regular” titles, and then became more caustic when Mendoza didn’t follow through. Recently, in one short, punchy diatribe, Rafael blistered the WBA as wretched, vile, and rancid.

Regardless of your opinion, it’s hard not to feel sorry for Fres Oquendo who keeps getting stranded at the altar. No, he’s not fun to watch and a man of his age shouldn’t be taking any more punches, but he has always been an honest workman and by all accounts he’s a very decent man. Born in Puerto Rico but raised in Chicago, Oquendo pitched right in when the island nation of his birth was ravaged by Hurricane Maria. He was personally responsible for relocating Puerto Rican boxing legend Wilfred Benitez and Benitez’s sister, his caregiver, to Chicago where their lives wouldn’t be as hard.

Check out more boxing news on video at The Boxing Channel

To comment on this article at The Fight Forum, CLICK HERE.

Continue Reading

Feature Articles

Bob Arum Hails Terence Crawford (not Lomachenko) as Boxing’s Next Superstar

Published

on

Arum says Terence

Top Rank’s Bob Arum says Terence Crawford will become this generation’s Floyd Mayweather or Manny Pacquiao–elite boxers who became worldwide celebrity sensations. Arum, who promoted both Mayweather and Pacquiao on the way to their historic crossover statuses expects big things from the undefeated Crawford over the next few years.

“He’s the best fighter in the United States, and he’s so charismatic,” said Arum. “He comes from middle America, and In the next year or so, he will be huge.”

Arum’s assertion is noteworthy for two reasons. First, Arum is also the promoter for Vasyl Lomachenko. Lomachenko is ranked No. 1 pound-for-pound by The Ring, the Boxing Writers Association of America and the Transnational Boxing Rankings Board. More importantly, Lomachenko seems to have a groundswell of support behind him both in the media and among fight fans.

Lomachenko has also been heavily featured through Top Rank’s television partnership with ESPN. While Crawford has achieved more in his career than Lomachenko (at least in my eyes) and, as noted by Arum, is a homegrown American talent, Lomachenko seems to be considered the more marketable commodity to that network judging by the amount of promotional materials ESPN has pumped out about the fighter over the last year.

The other reason Arum’s claim about Crawford is interesting is the performance of Canelo Alvarez over the weekend in his majority decision rematch win over Gennady Golovkin. Besides Mayweather and Pacquiao, Alvarez is the clear PPV leader among all of boxing’s current commodities, and his status as boxing’s new money fighter should only grow stronger after the best win of his career.

Still, Crawford is one of the few very elite fighters in all of boxing. He’s ranked No. 2 pound-for-pound by The Ring, the Boxing Writers Association of America and the Transnational Boxing Rankings Board.

While Lomachenko and Alvarez are also candidates to become boxing’s next big thing, there’s no doubt Crawford is also one of the few boxers in the sport right now with the right things in place to become the next Mayweather or Pacquiao.

Omaha’s Crawford is in the midst of an historic run. When he stopped Jeff Horn in round 9 at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas in June, Crawford captured a world title in his third different weight class, welterweight. This after Crawford had already captured two lineal boxing championships, as well as multiple alphabet titles, in both the lightweight and junior welterweight divisions.

By any measure, Crawford is truly one of the best boxers in the sport. Not only does he look the part in the ring on fight night (something more and more writers seem to value most when voting for pound-for-pound lists), but the fighter has already accomplished so much in his career that it seems Arum is doing more than the fiduciary duty of promoting his fighter when he ascribes to Crawford such lofty praise.

Crawford, still just 30 years old, is already halfway to matching Mayweather and Pacquiao’s shared record of most lineal championships. Over the course of his career, Mayweather captured lineal championships at junior lightweight, lightweight, welterweight, and junior middleweight. Pacquiao won his as a flyweight, featherweight, junior lightweight, and junior welterweight.

In order for Crawford to grab lineal championship No. 3, most believe he’ll have to go through welterweight phenom Errol Spence. While promotional entanglements might keep this superfight on the shelf for a while, Arum said he had no problem pitting Crawford against Spence in what would be one of the best matchups in recent memory.

“Absolutely,” said Arum when asked about working with Al Haymon’s Premier Boxing Champions, who represents Spence, to make the fight. Could any response from him be more exciting? Crawford vs. Spence might be the next superfight in boxing. Both fighters are among the very elite, and unlike what ultimately happened with Mayweather vs. Pacquiao, who fought each other well past their peak years, both would be in the prime of their careers.

Winning that fight would certainly go a long way to making Arum’s vision of Crawford’s future come true. And who knows? Maybe Crawford really is the next Mayweather or Pacquiao. Heck, for all we know, he could even be on his way to doing something more.

Check out more boxing news on video at The Boxing Channel

To comment on this article at The Fight Forum, CLICK HERE.

Continue Reading

Feature Articles

A Kaleidoscope of Boxers Guaranteed to Provide Action: Past and Present

Published

on

Marvelous Marvin

To set the tone for this article, one needs only to watch the way in which Thomas Hearns came out in the first round against Marvelous Marvin Hagler. He was ready to rock and roll as was his fearsome looking opponent. The ensuing unmitigated savagery was the quintessential illustration of full-tilt boogie.

For most boxing fans, the anticipation of an all-out action bout gets the chills running down spines faster than anything else. But not all, as some prefer a tactical or clinical fight that someone like Mikey Garcia can orchestrate and others –but not many—enjoy a defensive gem via a Willie Pep, Nicolino Locche, or Pernell Whitaker. A few love a genuine blood fest that a Gabe Rosado-type can provide, and who doesn’t like seeing something special as in Sugar Ray Leonard, Kostya Tszyu, Terence Crawford or Vasiliy Lomachenko?

Chill-or-be-chilled types like Bob Satterfield and Tommy Morrison were super exciting. In this connection—a certain cadre of warriors, past and present, would come out charging and stalking as soon as the bell rang. Many demonstrated a marked disdain for defense and used a non-stop, no let-up pressure that discouraged their opponents, especially in the late rounds. The anticipation from the crowd was palpable because it sensed some form of destruction was on its way. The cheering would start during the instructions and sometimes did not let up until the concussive end.

This cadre included Rocky Marciano, Tony Ayala, Vicious Victor Galindez, Jeff Fenech, Roberto Duran, and Julio Cesar Chavez (who sapped the spirit of his opponents by ripping away at their mid-section). Also, Carl “The Cat”  Thompson , chill-or-be-chilled Ricardo “Pajarito” Moreno (60-12-1 with 59 KOs),  Ron Lyle, the ultra-violent Edwin Valero, the appropriately nicknamed JulianMr KO” Letterlough, James “The Outlaw” Hughes and his mindboggling ability to snatch victory from certain defeat, Thai stalking monster Khaosai Galaxy (47-1),  the first version of George Foreman (pictured with the aforementioned Lyle), Ji-Hoon “Volcano” Kim, Ruslan  Provodnikov, Orlando “Siri” Salido, Marcos Maidana, Lenny Z, Alfredo “Perro” Angulo, Mike Alvarado, Brandon Rios, and Mickey Roman (the later four are still fighting but past their primes).

Others who presently incite the anticipation of something special include (but are not limited to) Naoya “Monster” Inoue (16-0), Errol “The Truth” Spence Jr (24-0), Srisaket Sor Rungvisai (46-4-1), Alex Saucedo (27-0), and, of course, Gennady “GGG” Golovkin (38-1-1) who now has become slightly more tactical like his nemesis, Canelo Alvarez (50-1-1).

These stand out as representative.

Past

A prime Mike Tyson—and the emphasis is on prime– was the epitome of a boxer who guaranteed action. One simply would not leave his or her seat when “Iron Mike” was doing his highlight reel thing, and his blowout of Michael Spinks punctuated his standing at the top of all-action type fighters, even if the action was usually non-mutual.

Joe Frazier came out smokin’ and would not let up until either he or his opponent were done. For the most part, decisions were not in Joe’s DNA and his left hook was as malicious as a hook can be. With Joe, you just sat back and enjoyed the action. Frazier, wrote boxing historian Tracy Callis,  “was a strong, ‘swarmer’ style boxer who applied great pressure on his opponent and dealt out tremendous punishment with a relentless attack of lefts and rights; His left hook was especially stiff and quick when delivered during his bob-and-weave perpetual attack; he fought three minutes per round and never seemed to tire.”

Carlos “Escopeta” (Shotgun) Monzon (87-3-9) was a powerful and rangy Argentinean killing machine, built like an iron rod. Some said he pushed his punches. Well if he did, he pushed 87 opponents to defeat. He also became only the second man to stop former three-time world champion Emile Griffith, turning the trick in the 14th round. Blessed with great and deceptive stamina and a solid chin, he seemingly was an irresistible force. He was unbeaten over the last 81 bouts of his career, a span of 13 years, and defended his title 14 times. “One would need to write a book in order to do justice to comparing a fighter of Carlos Monzon’s calibre to his fellow all-time greats,” wrote Mike Casey.

Arturo Gatti and Irish Micky Ward were the quintessential action fighters. One is gone amidst controversy, and hopefully the other will not pay a price for his many ring wars. With these two, just count up the Fights-of-the-Year and the rest is history. Suffice it to say that Gatti and Ward will be forever linked in boxing lore.

Until his fateful fight with Nigel Benn (another all-action fighter), Gerald McClellan was absolutely, positively, a stalking monster with dynamite in his gloves. It was ferocity and fury at its highest level and it was something to behold. Sadly, his fight with Benn left him permanently disabled; his story remains a dark stain on boxing. As Ian McNeilly notes, “one man’s finest hour was the end of another man’s life as he knew it.”

Michael “The Great” Katsidis’s all-action style made thrilling fights a lock. The Kat” was willing to take three to deliver one. It was blood and guts to the last drop. Whether he too exacted a heavy price for this style remains to be seen.

Lucia Rijker, AKA “The Dutch Destroyer,” lived up to her moniker and destroyed everyone in her path. Again, it wasn’t “if,” it was “when.”

Christy Martin (49-7-3) put female boxing on the map in the ‘90s and she did it by going undefeated in 36 straight encounters, running roughshod over her opponents as evidenced by her 25 wins by stoppage during this run. She also managed to steal the show from a Mike Tyson main event in 1996 during her memorable and bloody battle with Deirdre Gogarty.

Present

Deontay Wilder, aka “The Bronze Bomber,” has a record of 40-0.  With 39 wins coming by KO—many in spectacular fashion, The “Bomber” brings with him that same sense of anticipation that Tyson did. It’s not if; it’s when and “when” can occur at any time. But unlike Tyson, there is a vulnerability that Luis Ortiz exposed that makes the excitement index go even higher.

Dillian Whyte (24-1) has seldom been in a dull affair. His vulnerability combined with his mode of attack ensures thrilling action and the possibility of a stoppage at any time. Unlike Dereck “Del-Boy” Chisora, Whyte is consistently aggressive and dangerous.

Manny Pacquiao (60-7-2) has slowed down considerably but his recent stoppage win over Lucas Matthysse offers hope that he can still conjure up his exciting whirlwind style of fast in-an-out movements that allowed him to win multiple titles over several future Hall of Fame opponents between 2005 and 2011. A rematch with Floyd Mayweather Jr., if rumors are true, would allow Pac Man an opportunity to accomplish a number of extraordinary things including avenging a prior defeat and ruining Mayweather’s undefeated record. Time will tell.

Though he appears to have shot his wad, a prime Antonio Margarito was the classic stalk, stun, and kill fighter. Heck, he belonged on the Discovery Channel. His two blowouts of Kermit Cintron showed the “Tijuana Tornado” at his most brutal. His come-from-behind demolition of Miguel Cotto stands out for its drama and bloodletting—and subsequent speculative controversy.

David Lemieux (39-4) always brings the heat. His fights seldom end as scheduled. With KO power in both hands and a propensity to rehydrate by 20 pounds, he is the essence of danger and attendant excitement. “With the sheer power he carries, Lemieux will always have a shot at beating any middleweight, and he is almost always involved in good action fights,” says James Slater.

Amanda Serrano (35-1-1) is the only women’s boxer to win world titles in six divisions. The “Real Deal” is unique in that she has a high KO percentage (74 percent) which is rare for female boxers. Amanda is 120 seconds of guaranteed action for each round.

                                                         **********

While Iron Mike Tyson is THE MAN, Matthew Saad Muhammad also warrants special billing as he embodied what this article is all about. Steve Farhood summed up the essence of Saad Muhammad with an observation that would be appropriate for his tombstone: “Eddie Gregory (Mustafa Muhammad) has a better jab, Marvin Johnson wields more power, James Scott does more sit ups. But, Muhammad’s heart is the size of a turnbuckle, and it anchors his title reign.”

Who did I leave out? Whose name or names would you add to this list?

Check out more boxing news on video at The Boxing Channel

To comment on this article at The Fight Forum, CLICK HERE.

Continue Reading

Trending