Connect with us

Featured Articles

Deontay Wilder Is In Love

Published

on

Boxing loves a rare few back. Even the most popular fighters of all-time are seldom universally loved, and those that are hardly last that way. Even the most iconic figure in boxing history, Muhammad Ali, has a fair number of detractors.

But it doesn’t stop fighters from being in love with what they do, and WBC heavyweight champion Deontay Wilder is a man in love with his craft.

“I’m excited about boxing,” said Wilder. “I’m in love with boxing. And I take it seriously. It’s on my mind constantly. They say you have to eat, breathe and sleep it, and I do all of the above. I’m just grateful to be able to compete on an elite level. I’m in love with the sport, so I’m ready to get in the ring each and every time. If the opponent is ready, if my challengers are ready, the champion is always ready.”

Wilder is coming off a Round 9 knockout win over Eric Molina in his home state of Alabama. He hailed the experience as the best of his career.

“I was happy to be able to have my very first title defense, and handle my title defense, in my home state. It was a wonderful feeling. The people responded well. It was a sold out arena. It was wonderful. I couldn’t ask for anything better.”

Wilder said when promoters leave Las Vegas and head to fighters’ backyards, the fans that come out to the fights are full of passion and the atmosphere is electric.

“They enjoy it. It makes it better for the sport and the fighters. When people are cheering that loud and having fun, they’re looking forward to the next one.”

Most pundits thought Wilder would knock Molina out during the first few rounds, but Wilder said he went into things anticipating a tough night and he got one. He said fighting for a title brings out the very best in people.

“If this was a regular fight, maybe that first knockdown would have been it for him, but he understood this was his opportunity, and maybe the only opportunity he would get in his career, so he was going to do his best to capitalize on it.”

Ultimately, Wilder was too strong and too skilled for the crafty Molina.

“I told people he was going to be tough because I read him as a fighter. I didn’t see fear in him. I saw nervousness as far as him being out of his element…but I didn’t see fear. He proved me right, and he proved a lot of people wrong about him. It made it great. And it was great for my state so they could see me go nine rounds with a great opponent who came to fight and take away my title. So it all worked out great.”

While his next opponent has yet to be determined, Wilder’s next bout will be broadcast on PBC on NBC on September 26. Wilder is excited to be fighting on national television.

“I’m looking forward to PBC on NBC. That’s going to be great for me and my career.”

Wilder said he had a few fighters on his mind that he wants to face in the near future. He mentioned Lucas Browne and Czar Glaskoz by name. Browne particularly has gotten under Wilder’s skin.

“I don’t listen to too much smack, but sometimes people can get on your nerves. I’m a type of person that believes in opportunities, especially if you’ve done enough, and you’re in the rankings to do so, now I want to pull your card.”

Wilder would love a bout against Browne. He mentioned it as possible for September 26, but recent reports have suggested it will be someone else. Still, Wilder seems intent on getting Browne in the ring sometime soon.

“I have a couple guys in mind. I want to pull their card just to get them out of the way. We got a lot of man crush guys—guys that have man crushes on me. Every word they speak in boxing, they have my name in their mouth. I think they go to sleep with my name in their mouth. I think they might even pray, and after their prayer, they probably speak of me. I’m about tired of it. I hear it, and I’m ready to pull some cards to give fans the fights they want to see. I want a tough fight each and every time.”

Wilder suggested Browne doesn’t really believe he can defeat Wilder, but just wants the fight for monetary reasons.

“I’m looking at Lucas Browne. I want to shut his bald-head mouth shut. And man, he’s the man, because he has a man crush on me. I think he’s just looking for the opportunity, for the money part of it. To be honest, he’s a guy that came up out of a garage and stuff like that. Most of those guys are going to look at me as an opportunity for them to try and make a little bit of money. So I want to pull his card. He may be my next opponent.”

Of course, the fight most people are interested in seeing Wilder take is against his No. 1 contender according to the WBC, Alexander Povetkin. The former titleholder looked better than ever in last bout when he annihilated Mike Perez in just one round. To his credit, Wilder said he expects to fight Povetkin by the end of the year.

“Hopefully, that fight can happen this year–definitely this year. We’re looking to go into negotiations around October and maybe we can have [that fight] in December.”

And how would Wilder be ready to step in against the best fighter he has ever faced in such a fast turnaround after an end of September date? Easy. The man’s in love with what he does.

“I’m always ready. I’m always training. I love boxing.”

WATCH RELATED VIDEOS ON BOXINGCHANNEL.TV

Featured Articles

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.

Published

on

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.

Check out more boxing news on video at The Boxing Channel

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

Continue Reading

Featured 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

Featured 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

Trending