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McCarson’s Match For Charity Report; HE LIVES!



He did it. He sparred a top tier pro, and lives to tell the tale. Tell us, Kelsey McCarson, what was it like being in there with Jermell Charlo, in a scrap set up to raise money for the family of a kid battling cancer?

McCarson: “Let me tell you: this is what it’s like to fight me,” Jermell Charlo told my wife before the bout started, ‘You think I’m right here, but really I’m back here. You want to punch me here, but really I’m over there.’

 “I didn’t hear any of him say it,” McCarson said a bit after the session ended. “I was busy getting my headgear on my head over on the other side of the room. But I’d give the same summations of thing afterward. Because I couldn’t lay a hand on Charlo.
“We sparred for four rounds. Each round was a minute. I’m not sure why Danny Arnold and Ronnie Shields changed it right before the bout started. We originally planned for three three-minute rounds. But since each minute in the ring felt like forever, and since Charlo seemed to be going out of his way not to destroy me, I think probably it was best.
“Charlo was more than elusive,” the fighting writer continued. “He’d appear to be right in front of me, but I’d throw punches at him and just catch air. He’d pop me here and there as I went flailing about. But he was taking it easy on me. After all, he had “real sparring” scheduled for immediately after. 
“But I tried. I listened to my corner tell me things. Arnold told me to slow down and stop rushing toward him. So I tried that. My friend William Fuller told me to go to the body. I tried that, too. My wife told me between rounds to throw the uppercut. I didn’t come close to hitting him with it.
“I used my jab. I tried this and that. Nothing worked. I knew it wouldn’t before the fight started. But I still thought maybe it would somehow anyway after the fight began. 
“That’s a hard thing to explain, but I think you know what I mean. 
“All in all, it was a great experience. We raised lots of money for a great kid, and I got to see just how great these elite boxers are at what they do.”
Bravo, my friend. You rock.


Better man than I, is Kelsey McCarson. I mean, based on what he’s doing on Saturday, putting his body, his brain, his pride on the line in a charitable endeavor, the dude deserves mad props.

You’ve heard about this, right? About how this slightly overfed sportswriter–and I can say that, I’m of the same ilk–has been training his tush off so pro ace Jermell Charlo can kick that tush around for three rounds, for a good cause.

The fight is being held to gain attention for and raise money for a little boy who has himself proven even a mite tougher than Kelsey; little Corbin Glasscock, who is dealing with bone cancer, handles with his chemo routine like a Hall of Famer….But in this nation, a severe illness can render a family on the ropes financially, and sometimes the community has to step up, and fill the gap. That’s what my man McCarson is doing, and so far, over $6,000 has been raised to go to the Glasscock family.

I hereby respectfully challenge some of my more well heeled friends–YOU KNOW WHO YOU ARE, I am not naming names—to get out that check book, and scribble a couple zeros on a donation to Corbin.

C’mon, folks…this is selfless task by McCarson and I’d love for us to move the needle in a most meaningful fashion, monetarily!

Here is a Q n A I did with my favorite Texas Republican, “Krusher” Kelsey McCarson!

Woods: Fight night almost here. You pooping bricks yet?

McCarson: It’s hard to explain. I’m not worried or nervous yet. I’m sure I will have butterflies that morning, but I feel that way over lots of things. I know what boxing is, so I’m not worried about the outcome of the fight. I am prepared for anything that can happen to me in the ring. I’ve had many struggles in my life (I’ve written about some of them at TSS), and I am certain I’ve been in more dangerous situations than the ring before. It’s actually really exciting. How many people get to do something like this? And for a six-year-old with bone cancer? I will say that as the fight approaches I’ve become more and more aware of just how difficult landing any kind of punch on Charlo will be. He’s really exceptional defensively and I am a damn novice. I’m doomed! Also, I watched some film of him against two southpaws a bit recently but found it just discouraged me more than anything. So I quit doing that!

Do you think he will throw a punch at full velocity at you? Do u want him to?

I’m assuming he’ll throw punches at me like he does other sparring partners. So they’ll be painful, but I’ve not seen anyone really throw punches sparring the way they do on fight night. So I’m not sure. I’ve told Jermell numerous times that he’ll have to take care of business when the bell rings because he will never hear the end of it if he doesn’t. Now, he probably won’t run out to eradicate me in just a few seconds. He knows it’s a charity fight. So I’m sure he’ll move and do things here or there to show how much better he is at boxing than me. But I’m throwing mine at him for sure.

Do you have a nightmare of being dropped and stopped? Or cutting him and messing up his schedule?

I’d gladly get knocked out cold if it raises more money for Corbin. I don’t care about that. It doesn’t bother me in the least. I just don’t want to embarrass myself. The boxing ring has a way of bringing out the truth in people. I don’t believe I am a coward or a quitter, but I’m anxious to find out if I’m right. I’d be embarrassed to find out that I’m wrong, but if it raises more money for Corbin, I suppose I’m okay with that, too. On a side note, there have been cases in my life where I did act cowardly. And even more cases where I quit. Honestly, the latter is the thing that keeps me up at night. There were times and places I quit when I shouldn’t have. I didn’t just quit on myself in these cases, but I quit on other people! Some of my biggest regrets in life are around quitting on other people. I haven’t done that in a long time. But some things you carry with you the rest of your life. I’ll carry that in the ring with me, but I hope I can leave it there when the final bell rings. If not, I’ll carry it with me the rest of my life. But maybe it makes me a better person. I don’t know.

As far as cutting him or something, I’m not sure that’s something sparring partners should really worry about. Jermell spars three times a week or so. I’m sure I’ll land nary a punch! I’ll do my best, of course.

Do you stay in contact with the boy? Will the boy watch?

I talk to his mom on Facebook a few times a week, and I keep up with Corbin’s life through her and others who share his story. He’s quite admirable. Corbin is facing something tougher than anything I’ve had to deal with in my life and he’s only six years old! Yet Corbin is brave. Corbin is not a quitter. I used to have a glove signed by Erik Morales. I kept it near my desk at home. I’d look at it whenever I needed inspiration or something. That may seem corny, but it’s true. But Morales was a warrior. He was a real fighter. But I sent it to Corbin awhile back and told him I didn’t need it anymore because now I could just think of Corbin when I need inspiration. Because Corbin is a warrior. He’s a real fighter, too.

The family does hope to attend the fight. I didn’t expect that, but I suppose I maybe should have. It’s a fairly cool thing to have done on your behalf. I suppose I never considered that. I am sort of single-minded when it comes to things. I came up with the sparring idea because I figured it would garner the most attention so we could raise the most money possible. I hope they can be there to see it. Corbin has gone through a couple weeks of chemotherapy so they might not be able to come if he doesn’t feel well enough. Regardless, he’ll be in our hearts when Jermell and I fight on Saturday. Jermell talks about Corbin inspiring him, too. The kid has a way of doing that to people.

Will this or has it already changed you and how you cover the sport?

Absolutely. Boxing is the most difficult sport in the world. I knew that already, but I have experienced that now. And I have a deeper respect for fighters and what they put themselves through year-round. My body hurts everyday like never before, but so do all the other fighters up there at Plex. They live in pain everyday, and they work their butts off to be the best they can be. There is something amazingly wonderful in that. They are single-minded in their approach. They exercise for function not form. They live prioritized lives and give themselves entirely to their vocation. We could all learn from that. I know I have.



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Tanaka vs. Kimora: A Monday Morning Treat For Serious Fight Fans



Kosei Tanaka was just 4-0 the first time he was appraised on The Sweet Science back in 2015; the question then was, is Tanaka the world’s brightest boxing prospect? The question now is whether or not Tanaka is about to add a strap at a third weight to an already glittering career that has seen him annex belts at 105 and 108lbs in just his first eight fights.

Now 11-0 with seven knockouts he prepares, this coming Monday, to duel Sho Kimura in Nagoya, Japan and with a lot more than just the WBO trinket on the line.

Hearts and minds, as always, translate into dollars and yen. The winner of this all-Japanese contest will find himself buoyed in fame, glory and gold in his home country, which also happens to be one of the few places on the planet where a boxer can collect a small fortune without ever leaving his native shores. Should the winner dare to dream a wider dream, then that too can be facilitated by the win.  Even fistic denizens of boxing strongholds in Japan and Britain feel a shiver run down their spines when the words “Las Vegas headliner” are whispered into their ear.

The favored man among the hardcore in the west is Tanaka. He is still very young at just twenty-three years old and is slick and quick, what the west expects of a Japanese force. Interestingly enough, however, the Japanese seem to be leaning towards Kimura: older, at twenty-nine, armed with a superb work-rate, good power, limited technique but the conqueror of Chinese superstar Shiming Zou who he stopped in the summer of 2017. Zou may have had his bubble burst by the Thai brawler Amnat Ruenroeng in 2015, but it was Kimura who sent him stumbling into retirement and at a time when the talk was of China stealing Japan’s thunder as boxing’s home in the east.

Kimura was indeed impressive that night in Shanghai. He maintained pressure with wonderful variety, eschewing the jab, perhaps, for spells, but filling those gaps with an assortment of wonderful punches, most of all his body attack, which was persistent, withering, and apparently went unscored by two of the three judges who somehow had the Chinese ahead at the time of the eleventh round stoppage. Zou had shown a skill for flurrying while fleeing and Kimura had shown him how to fight.

Now a strapholder at 112lbs, Kimura staged two defenses in the following twelve months. The first was against Toshiyuki Igarashi, the man who beat Sonny Boy Jaro, the man who had beaten the superb champion Pongsaklek Wonjongkam before a softer fight against Froilan Saludar. He won both by stoppage.

Kimura, then, rather came from nowhere but made the most of his arrival. What he displayed in all three of these fights was a determination to offer pressure and footwork educated enough to do it while taking many fewer steps than his harried opponent. A tad overrated as a puncher, I suspect, he places himself in hitting position often enough that his default fight plan – chase, harass, throw – makes him capable of hurting his opponents by way of persistence and pressure.

He left Zou, Igarashi and Saludar, broken in his wake.

In short, he is the type of opponent Kosei Tanaka has been waiting for.

There have been calls for Tanaka to be considered a pound-for-pound talent should he overcome Kimura this Monday. I understand the impulse. Tanaka, were he to triumph, would become a three-weight world champion and he hails from a boxing territory which has little direct control over the meaningful pound-for-pound lists, if such a statement is not a contradiction in terms.

In short, it is felt he would be undervalued.

Tempering these calls is the fact that he has never beaten a divisional number one and that Kimura would be, by far, the best opponent he would have bested, and the most proven. Some Tanaka opponents have come good after he defeated them, some were ranked in the lower reaches of their respective divisional top tens when he matched them, but none are scalps as impressive as those dangled by the likes of Errol Spence or Anthony Joshua, who populate the nine, ten and eleven spots in reputable lists.

But this is neither here nor there; the key is not what Kimura does not represent, it is what he does represent. He is the best that Tanaka has met and, I would argue, the first truly elite fighter that Tanaka has met. He is the litmus test and he is one with a stylistic advantage.

Tanaka can punch. Here we will find out whether or not he punches hard enough to keep Kimura off him. Personally, I doubt it and that means that Kimura is going to hand him a serious gut check.

Interestingly, it will not be Tanaka’s first. The first time I wrote about him I stressed that his chin was essentially untested. That is no longer true. Tanaka, who is reasonably sound defensively, can be lazy in minding himself and foolish in pursuing the attack.

Thai puncher Rangsan Chayanram checked him in 2017, delivering a serious eye injury among other ignominies before succumbing in nine; puncher Angel Acosta, a ranked fighter if not a great one, hit and hurt Tanaka repeatedly late in their 2017 contest. If Tanaka has been learning these lessons, expectations concerning his potential may be realized. If he is not, he will fall short. Kimura is the man to test him.

Kimura’s experience and seemingly limitless twelve-round stamina are to be pitted against Tanaka’s skill, proven heart and taut footwork. It sees a superior technician – Tanaka – who has shown a propensity for being drawn into a cruder fighter’s wheelhouse matching an aggressive stalker – Kimura – who specializes in drawing technically superior foes into knockdown-drag-out scraps.

It is framed both as a fight that is likely to finish a future pound-for-pounder’s education and a fight where a young pretender is found out by a grizzled veteran.

Best of all, it is a fight that fight fans can watch for free, simply by clicking here.  The Asian Boxing website has secured exclusive international rights to the fight and will broadcasting it, free of charge, to anyone with an internet connection. As can be seen here, the fight is due to start at 4pm Japanese time.

All the reader has to do is find out what that means for timing in their own corner of the globe and a potential fight of the year will unfold before his or her eyes free of charge.

World class boxing being broadcast for free and including two of the best below 115lbs; a stylistic crossroads contest that opens up the on-ramp to pound-for-pound recognition for at least one of the combatants – on a Monday.  All facts worth keeping in mind the next time that someone tells you boxing’s prime was any number of decades ago.

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Fast Results From London: Joshua Takes Out Povetkin in the 7th



UK sporting

It was a very wet night at Wembley Stadium, but the dampness didn’t diminish the enthusiasm of the crowd which welcomed UK sporting hero Anthony Joshua into the ring with a thunderous ovation. And Joshua didn’t disappoint. After six relatively even rounds, he found his range in the seventh and became the first man to stop Alexander Povetkin. A three punch combo that began with an overhand right sent Povetkin sprawling into the ropes. The Russian beat the count, but Joshua smelled blood and as soon as the ref allowed the proceedings to continue he moved in for the kill. The official time was 1:59.

Povetkin started fast and in the eyes of many observers won the first three rounds. A sharp right hand in the waning seconds of round one reddened Joshua’s nose which leaked blood in the next round. The tide began to turn in round four when Povetkin suffered a cut above his left eye.

Povetkin (now 34-2), was the lighter man by 23 pounds. Joshua had a four inch height advantage and a seven inch reach advantage. And it mattered greatly that AJ was the younger man by 10-plus years. Povetkin wasn’t intimidated by Joshua and had several good moments but, at age 39, his reflexes betrayed him once the fight had crossed the midpoint.

Joshua, who owns three of the four meaningful heavyweight title belts, improved to 22-0 with his 21st stoppage. His next fight is penciled in for April 13 of next year against an opponent to be determined. His promoter Eddie Hearn has reserved that date at Wembley Stadium.

Other Bouts

In a 12-round lightweight bout, Joshua’s Olympic Games teammate and fellow gold medalist Luke Campbell (19-2) avenged the first loss of his career with a unanimous decision (119-109, 118-111,116-112) over France’s Yvan Mendy (40-5-1). This was Campbell’s second start since coming up short in a bid for Jorge Linares’s lightweight title and his first fight under his new trainer Shane McGuigan.

In their first meeting in December of 2015 at London’s O2 Arena, Mendy won a split decision that should have been unanimous. Campbell insisted that he had improved greatly in the interim and tonight’s fight bore witness. However, he needs to develop a harder punch to rank among the top lightweights in the world, a list headed by Mikey Garcia. As this fight was framed as a WBC title eliminator, Campbell is next in line to meet Garcia, but Mikey has indicated that he will pursue bigger game.

Lawrence Okolie, a 2016 Olympian who trains with Anthony Joshua, won a Lonsdale belt in only his 10th pro start with a 12-round decision over defending BBBofC cruiserweight champion Matty Askin in a messy fight. The undefeated Okolie had a point deducted in round five for leading with his head and had two more points deducted for holding, but banked enough rounds to get the nod on all three cards: 116-110, 114-112, and 114-113. Askin, who declined to 23-4-1, had won five straight heading in.

A 10-round heavyweight match between Sergey Kuzmin (13-0, 1 NC) and David Price (22-6) ended suddenly when Price retired on his stool after four relatively even rounds. The six-foot-eight, china-chinned Price claimed to have aggravated a biceps tear.

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Michael Dutchover Remains Undefeated in Ontario, Calif.

Transplanted Texan Michael Dutchover needed a little time to figure out Costa Rican Bergman Aguilar but when he did it was over quickly on Friday.



Michael Dutchover

ONTARIO-Calif.-Transplanted Texan Michael Dutchover needed a little time to figure out Costa Rican Bergman Aguilar but when he did it was over quickly on Friday.

Lightweight prospect Dutchover (11-0, 8 KOs) knocked out southpaw Aguilera (14-4-1, 4 KOs) in the fifth round with a barrage of body blows that left the Costa Rican limp at the Doubletree Hotel.

For two rounds Aguilar used an awkward counter-punching style that had Dutchover a little tentative. But once he figured out that combination punching was the key, he opened up with barrages and floored Aguilar with body shots at the end of round four.

That signaled doom for Aguilar.

The fifth round saw Dutchover target the body with impunity as Aguilar tried holding, running and covering up with no success. Referee Wayne Hedgepeth signaled the fight over at 2:31 of the fifth round giving Dutchover the win by knockout.

In a bantamweight clash Santa Ana’s Mario Hernandez (7-0-1, 3 KOs) and Mexico City’s Ivan Gonzalez (4-1-2, 1 KO) fought to a majority draw after six back and forth rounds.

Hernandez targeted the body against the taller Gonzalez who relied on long range counters. Both found success but neither could prove superiority after six turbulent rounds.

After six rounds one judge saw it 58-56 for Gonzalez but the two other judges saw it 57-57 for a majority draw.

Other bouts

South Central L.A.’s Ruben Torres (7-0, 6 KOs) extended his undefeated streak with a knockout over Mexico’s Eder “El Koreano” Amaro (6-6, 2 KOs) in a lightweight fight. But it wasn’t easy.

Amaro switched from southpaw to orthodox and was matching Torres for two rounds until the taller local fighter began blasting away to the body and head with precision. Many in the crowd cheered “Koreano” in unison but it couldn’t help once Torres zeroed in.

At the end of the fourth round Amaro could not continue and the fight was stopped giving a knockout for Torres.

Richard Brewart Jr. (2-0) mowed through Edward Aceves (0-5) flooring him with body shots in the first round then overwhelming him in the second. After seven unanswered blows referee Eddie Hernandez stopped the fight at 1:32 of round two giving Rancho Cucamonga’s Brewart the win by knockout in the super welterweight bout.

Southpaw David Ortiz (1-0) won his pro debut by unanimous decision after four rounds in a welterweight match against San Diego’s Mario Angeles (2-11-2). Ortiz lives in Bloomington, Calif. and is trained by Henry Ramirez. No knockdowns were scored.

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