Posts Tagged ‘Sergio Martinez’

Three Thoughts: Gennady Golovkin brutalizes Matthew Macklin

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Gennady Golovkin dropped Matt Macklin in the third round with a vicious body shot. (Joe Camporeale/USA TODAY Sports)

Gennady Golovkin (left) dropped Matt Macklin in the third round with a vicious body shot. (Joe Camporeale/USA TODAY Sports)

MASHANTUCKET, Conn. — Three thoughts from WBA middleweight champion Gennady Golovkin’s third round destruction of Matthew Macklin…

There are body shots, and there was that: If you’re a young fighter who thinks headhunting is how you score knockouts, save the footage of this fight. In the third round, after backing up and battering Macklin up for most of the first two, Golovkin (27-0) delivered one of the most savage body shots in boxing history, a perfectly placed left hook that was both precise and savage, and kept Macklin on the mat long after he was counted out.

Make no mistake: Macklin is a live opponent. He gave Sergio Martinez all he could ask for in a loss last year and was coming off a first-round knockout win over veteran Joachim Alcine. But he had no chance. Golovkin’s pressure was swarming, and Macklin was never given a chance to fight back.

“It was an easy fight for me,” Golovkin said. “He never hurt me. I felt great in the ring. I want to fight again as soon as possible. Any top fighter, any champion, any belt holder, anywhere.”

Said Macklin, “He’s the best I ever fought. He never let me get started.”

Anyone still think it’s hype? There had been this bizarre belief among some on the Internet that, perhaps, Golovkin was more hype than substance. Maybe it was his opponents—no superstars on that resume yet—or perhaps it was the way HBO has anointed him as its next star. Regardless, that debate should be over. The narrative tomorrow will be Golovkin’s power, and it should. “He has clubbing, solid power,” Macklin said. “You can feel the weight of every punch he throws.”

But Golovkin is so much more than just a power puncher. He fought 355 amateur fights, and won 350 of them. He is methodical, technical, accurate with every punch he throws. There is no wasted motion, no wasted energy. He is a complete fighter.

“People talk about punching power,” Andre Ward said. “He is always in position to punch. It’s from that Soviet system. He has a strong base, strong foundation. He puts a lot of pressure on people, and it starts with his feet. He gets into position, then is able to unload the big shot.”

Who’s next? Anyone? Bueller? Think any middleweight is eager to get in with Golovkin? After the fight, Golovkin was asked about Sergio Martinez, the 160-pound division’s money man who is out for the rest of the year with multiple injuries. Golovkin was all for it. Lou DiBella, Martinez’s promoter, was not.

“It’s not that its out of the question,” DiBella said. “But he’s not going to come off a 14-month layoff and fight this animal.”

Fortunately for Golovkin, he is going to start attracting some top opponents, thanks to HBO’s exposure. Exposure means money, and Golovkin’s license fees will continue to rise. Top Rank’s Bob Arum said he is open to a fight with Julio Cesar Chavez Jr., and IBF titleholder Daniel Geale—who fights on HBO in August—is another possibility. Even Ward is now warming to it; he told me after the fight that he has no problem fighting Golovkin, but said Golovkin’s team “doesn’t want it right now.”

In short: Golovkin is going to start getting bigger fights. And that’s good news for everybody.

– Chris Mannix

  • Published On Jun 30, 2013
  • Does Andre Ward need Carl Froch? Believe it or not, it may be true

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    Carl Froch vs. Andre Ward

    Carl Froch lost to Andre Ward in 2011, but holds the upper hand in rematch negotiations. (Nick Laham/Getty Images)

    In 2011, Andre Ward battered Carl Froch over 12 lopsided rounds, winning a unanimous decision and firmly establishing himself as the No. 1 super middleweight in the world. But as I watched Froch batter Mikkel Kessler last week, a fight witnessed by 18,000 fans in London’s O2 Arena and millions more on Sky Sports in the U.K and HBO in the U.S., it occurred to me:

    Ward needs Froch more than Froch needs Ward.

    Think about it: Froch has options. The win over Kessler evened the series between the two and a third fight — in either England or Denmark — would be worth millions. Light heavyweight champion Bernard Hopkins is practically pleading for a fight with Froch, willing to come to the U.K. and fight at a catchweight to get it. Rising super middleweight contender George Groves is a promotional stablemate of Froch and would create an appealing all-England showdown.

    Read More…

  • Published On Jun 04, 2013
  • Will HBO’s spat with Golden Boy cost Peter Quillin a shot at the top?

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    Peter Quillin (Elsa/Getty Images)

    Peter Quillin took down Fernando Guerrero to defend his WBO middleweight title at Barclays Center. (Elsa/Getty Images)

    NEW YORK — Peter Quillin sat on a dais late Saturday night with a toothy smile and hardly a scratch on his face. Hours earlier, Quillin, the undefeated WBO middleweight champion, the charismatic transplanted Brooklynite who has made the Barclays Center his new home, defended his title, stopping Fernando Guerrero in the seventh round. At 29, Quillin is a fighter with a bright future. Or at least he should be.

    Read More…

  • Published On Apr 29, 2013
  • Quick Jabs: Kelly Pavlik has a tough fight ahead, Gabriel Rosado recovering, more

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    Kelly Pavlik

    After struggling with alcoholism, Kelly Pavlik has retired from boxing at the age of 30. (Chris Trotman/Getty Images)

    • I can’t say I’m surprised that former middleweight champion Kelly Pavlik decided to call it quits last week, at 30. From what I have been told, the move to Oxnard, California to train with Robert Garcia had not been going as well as planned and that Pavlik often appeared disinterested during training. It’s fortunate for Pavlik that Andre Ward had to back out of a scheduled January date with a shoulder injury; that could have gotten real ugly, real fast.

    Is Pavlik done? I doubt it. Boxing is littered with comebacks, and Pavlik is young enough that he can take a couple of years off. I just hope Pavlik can keep the demons that have chased him the last few years in check. I wrote the first story on Pavlik following his second stint in rehab and I remember his defiance towards accepting that he had a drinking problem. It’s going to be a battle for him to keep his life in order now that he is retired. I hope that, like so many of his battles in the ring, he wins it.

    • I’m told Gabriel Rosado, who absorbed a pretty good beating from Gennady Golovkin last weekend, is recovering well and expects to return sometime this summer. Rosado plans to drop back down to 154-pounds, where he will still be a top contender. I know Rosado has his eyes on Saul Alvarez, but a good fight for him would be a rematch with Alfredo Angulo, who knocked Rosado out in the second round in 2009.

    • Speaking of Golovkin, promoter Tom Loeffler told me the plan going forward was to have Golovkin fight in March, somewhere in Europe, before returning to the U.S. in June for a bigger HBO fight. If IBF titleholder Daniel Geale wins his rematch with Anthony Mundine later this month, a unification fight with Golovkin would make for a good matchup.

    • Timothy Bradley — who has made some of the worst business decisions in recent memory — is reportedly closing in on a fight with Yuri Gamboa. I like it. It’s a very winnable fight for Bradley and would give him a big bounce towards a bigger fight later in the year.

    • Checked in with Sergio Martinez’s advisor, Sampson Lewkowicz, last weekend, who told me Martinez is doing well in his recovery from knee surgery. According to Lewkowicz, Martinez is doing strictly upper body workouts right now but will begin full training in late February and will be ready to fight in April.

    • Top Rank announced the signing of Chinese amateur superstar Zou Shiming, a three-time world champion and two-time gold medalist in the junior flyweight division. Zou, 31, will make his pro debut in Macau in April.

    • If you missed Sergey Kovalev’s one-sided beating of former light heavyweight titleholder Gabriel Campillo, find the replay on NBC Sports Network. In his stiffest test to date, Kovalev walked right through Campillo, a slick, talented boxer who had been knocked out just once before. Kovalev is more than just raw power: He’s a smart boxer who under the tutelage of John David Jackson has developed a complete game. He goes to the head, to the body and when he smells blood has a tremendous killer instinct. Main Events would like to bring him back sometime in June, preferably on HBO. If Tavoris Cloud can get past Bernard Hopkins in March, a Cloud-Kovalev showdown would be explosive.

    • I like Bryant Jennings — he was’s 2012 Prospect of the Year. But fighting Wladimir Klitschko right now is a bad, bad idea. Jennings made great strides in 2012 but he is nowhere near ready for that kind of fight. At this point in his career, a knockout loss to Klitschko might be something he doesn’t recover from.

    • Still no decisions have been made on the futures of the Klitschko brothers, per manager Bernd Boente, though I still expect both to be back in the ring sometime this spring.

    • So Jorge Arce wants another fight. Boxers really need to stop using the word ‘retirement.’

    • Another week, another disgraceful judging performance, this time by Tony Paolillo, who inexplicably scored the Roman Martinez-Juan Carlos Burgos fight for Martinez, 116-112. I’ve watched that fight three times and there is no way you can give Martinez that many rounds. The official punch stats gave Burgos a 286-193 advantage, including 234-164 in power shots.

    Unsurprisingly, Burgos’ promoters demanded a rematch.

    “Juan Carlos won that fight hands down and this week we will file for an immediate rematch”, said Artie Pelullo, CEO of Banner Promotions. “The kid worked hard and should be a world champion this morning. We just hope the WBO agrees with what the whole world saw and does the right thing by granting us this rematch.”

    -Chris Mannix

  • Published On Jan 23, 2013
  • Quick Jabs: Bernard Hopkins’ return, Sergio Martinez’s homecoming fight and more

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    Bernard Hopkins (above) could return to action in March in an attempt to break his record as the oldest boxer to win a major world title. (Al Bello/Getty Images)

    Bernard Hopkins (above) could return to action in March in an attempt to break his record as the oldest boxer to win a major world title. (Al Bello/Getty Images)

    Some quick jabs …

    • All indications are Bernard Hopkins — who will celebrate his 48th birthday next month — will return to the ring in March against IBF light heavyweight titleholder Tavoris Cloud at the Barclays Center. Golden Boy Promotions CEO Richard Schaefer told that Hopkins, who was wiped out by Chad Dawson last April, called him “out of the blue” a few months ago and told him, “I know I can still fight, I know I can still win.”

    “Cloud-Hopkins is an interesting fight,” Schaefer said. “He’s a young, undefeated guy going up against legend like Bernard Hopkins. Bernard feels like it [Cloud] is the perfect style for him. He feels confident he can beat his own record and win another title. Stylistically, it’s an interesting matchup.”

    According to Schaefer, the last remaining obstacle in making the fight is the IBF. Cloud has a mandatory title defense due against Karo Murat. Schaefer says he has submitted a request to the IBF, with the blessing of Sauerland Event (which promotes Murat) and Don King (Cloud), that outlines a scenario where the winner of Hopkins-Cloud will defend the title against Murat in the next fight.

    • Wondering why Sergio Martinez is fighting Martin Murray in Argentina next month? Money, a truckload of it. According to sources familiar with the situation, the Argentine government is paying Martinez $5 million to hold his next fight in his home country. Martinez’s popularity in Argentina has grown exponentially in recent years, but monetizing a fight there, where a live gate wouldn’t generate much income, has been considered problematic. With the government offering that kind of guarantee, it becomes worth it.

    • Schaefer said he hoped to resolve the futures of Saul “Canelo” Alvarez and Robert Guerrero by the first week in January. Both Alvarez and Guerrero are candidates to face Floyd Mayweather in May. Recently, Alvarez, on his official Facebook page, posted that a Mayweather fight was close to being completed.

    “Canelo is very much pushing for a Mayweather fight,” Schaefer said. “I’m working on it. I have to see what i can deliver for Canelo. There is a lot of work still to be done.”

    The most appealing option, from Golden Boy’s perspective, is to match Mayweather with Guerrero, Alvarez with Austin Trout or Alfredo Angulo and if both win make Mayweather-Alvarez in September.

    • The California State Athletic commission is reaching out to boxers who may be eligible for a $5.1 million pension fund. To qualify, a boxer must be at least 50 years old, have fought at least 10 rounds a year for four years without more than a three-year break, and had a minimum of 75 scheduled professional rounds without a break of three years or more.

    “The Athletic Commission wants to locate eligible boxers in order to pay them the benefits they have rightfully accrued,” said State Athletic Commission executive officer Andy Foster. “Any assistance in getting the word out would be greatly appreciated and would be a service to the athletes who gave so much to entertain the people of the State of California.”

    • The assault on Getty Images photographer Al Bello by two members of Manny Pacquiao’s team — advisor Michael Koncz and assistant trainer Buboy Fernandez — was despicable. Photographs clearly show Bello, carrying two cameras, being grabbed and kicked by Koncz and Fernandez while in a precarious position outside the ring. Getty Images has requested further action be taken against Koncz and Fernandez, and I agree with them. A fine and/or a suspension is in order. What I don’t agree with is Getty seeking sanctions against Pacquiao, who had just been knocked out when the assault happened and clearly had nothing to do with it.

    • Don’t be surprised if Andre Ward’s super middleweight title defense against Kelly Pavlik gets pushed into early or mid-March. Indications I’m getting are that Ward’s shoulder, while not torn, is pretty bad and could require extended time to heal.

    • Farewell, Larry Merchant. For 35 years you were a credit to the sport. Here’s hoping you stay in it, in some capacity.

    • As long as Nonito Donaire is represented by Top Rank and Abner Mares by Golden Boy, that fight will never, ever happen.

    • Schaefer said he spoke to promoter Frank Warren again on Monday and that negotiations continue for a February matchup between lightweights Adrien Broner and Ricky Burns. Schaefer called the talks with Warren “promising.”

    • On the undercard of Broner-Burns, Schaefer said, would be the rematch between Seth Mitchell and Johnathan Banks. Last month, Banks knocked out the undefeated Mitchell in the second round. When I asked Schaefer if there had been internal discussions about taking Mitchell easing his way back into the ring, he indicated the decision to take the immediate rematch was Mitchell’s decision.

    “Seth and his team pushed for the rematch,” Schaefer said. “It’s obviously not an easy fight. For Seth, it’s do or die. He needs to show he can beat a guy like Banks. if he can’t win against Banks, it tells you a lot.”

    • Schaefer confirmed that 41-year old Shane Mosley — who has not won a fight since 2009 and has been retired since taking a lopsided beating from Alvarez last May — is a candidate to face WBA welterweight champion Paulie Malignaggi. If that fight is made, it shouldn’t come anywhere near a television network.

    • Boxing’s return to network TV last Saturday was a success. According to Golden Boy, the CBS card headlined by Leo Santa Cruz’s bantamweight title defense against Alberto Guevara did an overnight rating of 1.3, retaining 90 percent of the audience that watched Butler’s overtime win over Indiana before it. Boxing will be back on network TV this week, this time on NBC, with the rematch between Tomasz Adamek and Steve Cunningham.

    – Chris Mannix

  • Published On Dec 18, 2012
  • Gabriel Rosado will return Dec. 8 against Elvin Ayala with eye on title shot vs. Cornelius ‘K9′ Bundrage

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    Gabriel Rosado (right) won’t wait for his mandatory title shot against Cornelius ‘K9″ Bundrage, preferring to take a keep-busy fight in the meantime. (AP)

    Junior middleweight Gabriel Rosado, the mandatory challenger for IBF champion Cornelius “K9″ Bundrage, will return to the ring on Dec. 8 against Elvin Ayala. Rosado-Ayala will be the co-main event for the card headlined by heavyweights Bryant Jennings and Bowie Tupou on NBC Sports Network.

    In September, Rosado (21-5) earned the IBF’s No. 1 contender spot, knocking out Charles Whittaker. Rosado had hoped to land a shot at WBC 154-pound titleholder Saul “Canelo” Alvarez. However Golden Boy Promotions CEO Richard Schaefer told the Los Angeles Times this week that Alvarez preferred to sit out until May, and then would only fight Miguel Cotto, Floyd Mayweather or Sergio Martinez.

    While Bundrage does not have a fight scheduled, he is not required to face Rosado until Mar. 30. Rosado — who has already fought three times in 2011 — did not want to wait until then for his next fight.

    “It’s about staying busy,” Rosado told “I don’t feel K9 is going to give me a shot right away. He is looking for a big payday. I prefer to stay active. Each fight I am getting better and better.

    Said Rosado’s promoter Russell Peltz. “Gab could sit around and wait until March when Bundrage has to fight him, but that’s not in Gab’s DNA. He’s a fighter and fighters want to fight. It’s that simple.”

    Because Ayala (26-5-1) has campaigned primarily as a middleweight, the fight will be at a catchweight of 156 pounds. Even though the fight is at a catchweight, IBF chairman Lindsey Tucker told that if Rosado loses, he would not retain his top-rated status.

    Rosado says he is not concerned with fighting a bigger opponent.

    “It doesn’t bother me,” Rosado said. “He might be a little bigger but I’m a strong 154-pounder. I’m probably the biggest 154-pounder in boxing. I’ve sparred with Bernard Hopkins when he weighed 190. I don’t think his size will be an advantage.”

    – Chris Mannix

  • Published On Oct 24, 2012
  • Julio Cesar Chavez Jr. says he’s never smoked marijuana, blames positive drug test on insomnia medication

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    Julio Cesar Chavez Jr. told ESPN Deportes he’s never smoked marijuana, attributing his positive test for the drugs for insomnia medication that contains cannabis. (AP)

    Former middleweight beltholder Julio Cesar Chavez Jr. addressed his indefinite suspension and $20,000 fine for marijuana use Thursday in a television interview.

    The appearance on Nación ESPN, a Spanish-language talk show on ESPN Deportes, marked Chavez’s first public comments since his positive drug test following his Sept. 15 defeat to Sergio Martinez.

    Chavez said he’s never smoked marijuana, claiming he’d been prescribed eyedrops for his insomnia that contained cannabis.

    “I’m not a drug addict, I have never smoked marijuana. For years I have had insomnia, so I went to the doctor and he prescribed some drops for me that contained cannabis. I stopped taking them before the fight with [Sergio] Martinez, and I didn’t think I was going to test positive,” said Chavez in Spanish from his home in Mexico. “I have great respect for [WBC president] Jose Sulaiman, I guess what they do is for my good and boxing, but I find it unfair.”

    Chavez lost his WBC middleweight title to Martinez in a high-profile fight that attracted 475,000 pay-per-view buys and a $3 million gate. On Thursday, the WBC announced his indefinite suspension and $20,000 fine. The Nevada State Athletic Commission has yet to mete out its punishment.

    “Now I hope the opinion of the Commission of Nevada [is positive],” Chavez continued. “I hope they realize the truth, that I have not lied about anything, and I hope the punishment won’t be a heavy one. Let there be a rematch, and we will work with renewed vigor, and I’ll take whatever test they want.”

    The drug test wasn’t Chavez Jr.’s first act of immaturity. Last January, the 26-year-old was arrested for suspicion of DUI. He pleaded no contest and was sentenced to probation.

    Chavez Jr. had previously been suspended after testing positive for a diuretic in his November 2009 win over Troy Rowland. The official result was changed to a no-contest.

    – staff

  • Published On Oct 05, 2012
  • Sergio Martinez-Julio Cesar Chavez Jr. fight does 475,000 pay-per-view buys

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    The numbers are in for last weekend’s fight between Julio Cesar Chavez Jr. and Sergio Martinez, and they are big: According to HBO, Chavez-Martinez generated an estimated 475,000 pay-per-view buys and $24 million in revenue.

    The numbers — which will likely grow once all the figures are reported — vastly exceed the promoter’s and the network’s expectations of 250,000 buys.

    Both Chavez and Martinez have expressed interest in a rematch. That rematch will likely be delayed at least a year however, after Chavez tested positive for marijuana after the fight and will face a lengthy suspension.

    – Chris Mannix

  • Published On Sep 21, 2012
  • Julio Cesar Chavez Jr. tests positive for banned substance after Sergio Martinez fight

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    Julio Cesar Chavez Jr. (above) tested positive for a banned substance — reportedly marijuana — after Saturday’s fight with Sergio Martinez in Las Vegas. (AP)

    Former middleweight titleholder Julio Cesar Chavez Jr. tested positive for a banned substance following Saturday’s unanimous-decision defeat to Sergio Martinez. Chavez’s promoter, Top Rank, confirmed the positive test.

    Top Rank’s Carl Moretti confirmed the positive test was for marijuana.

    “Top Rank is reviewing the situation,” Top Rank publicist Lee Samuels said in a statement. “Julio Cesar Chavez Jr will have the opportunity to explain this situation to the Nevada State Athletic Commission.”

    The positive test is the second for Chavez in Nevada. In 2009, Chavez tested positive for Furosemide, a known diuretic that helps with weight loss, after his win over Troy Rowland. Chavez was suspended for seven months and fined $10,000 by the commission. The official result was changed to a no-contest.

    Last week, Chavez cited that positive test as one of the turning points of his career.

    “I thought about it, and I said, ‘What am I doing here? Do I need to be serious about this?’” Chavez said. “‘Do I really want this? How much do I want it?’”

    NSAC executive director told there is no mandatory suspension length for a second positive test. Kizer said any violation can result in a fine of up to 100 percent of the fighter’s purse — Chavez was guaranteed $3 million against Martinez — and/or a one-year suspension.

    The positive test is the latest act of immaturity from the 26-year old Chavez. Last January, Chavez was arrested for suspicion of DUI. He pleaded no contest and was sentenced to probation. Before teaming up with Hall of Fame trainer Freddie Roach, Chavez had a reputation for being lazy in the gym. Though he seemed to shed that reputation over the last year, in the weeks before the fight with Martinez, Chavez routinely skipped out on training sessions, often preferring to work out at home late at night rather than at the gym.

    Roach said he will continue to work with Chavez but that “the first day he misses something, I’m going home.”

    – Chris Mannix

  • Published On Sep 19, 2012
  • Quick jabs: Ricky Hatton comes back, Amir Khan finds new trainer, more

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    Former two-division world champion Ricky Hatton (above), who announced a comeback last week, might be an attractive opponent for compatriot Amir Khan. (AP)

    Some quick jabs …

    • How much money did Miguel Cotto leave on the table when he passed on a rematch with Manny Pacquiao? According to Bob Arum, a lot. Arum said Cotto’s guarantee for a Dec. 1 date with Pacquiao would have been around $13 million, with the possibility of going as high as $15 million if the pay-per-view numbers were strong. Instead, Cotto will settle for significantly less in a fight with unknown junior middleweight Austin Trout while Arum signed Juan Manuel Marquez for a fourth fight with Pacquiao by guaranteeing just $6 million.

    • HBO was thrilled with the rating it got for the heavily promoted Sept. 8 showdown between Andre Ward and Chad Dawson. According to the Neilsen numbers, Ward-Dawson attracted 1.3 million viewers, the sixth straight World Championship Boxing telecast exceeding 1 million viewers for HBO.

    • Here’s my one and only thought on the proposed partnership between Manny Pacquiao and 50 Cent: I’ll believe it when I see it.

    • I’m fully expecting a rematch between Julio Cesar Chavez Jr. and Sergio Martinez to take place early next year. Chavez Jr. wants it and Martinez isn’t going to sniff that much money against anyone else. Hopefully Chavez will take his training a little more seriously next time. He has the talent to beat Martinez but he has to be in peak condition both mentally and physically if he expects to have a shot against a fighter as fast and skilled as Martinez.

    • At 33, comebacking Ricky Hatton probably has one more big fight left in him. And perhaps the biggest one of his career could be out there: Amir Khan. They haven’t invented a word for how big Hatton-Khan could be in England and after a tune-up or two both could be ready for it.

    • Little tired of strength coach Alex Ariza taking to Twitter and passive aggressively implying that a fighter would have done better had he been more involved. In the aftermath of Chavez’s loss to Martinez, Ariza, who had reduced role in Chavez’s camp this time around, in a Q&A with his followers, suggested that Chavez would have performed better had he followed his diet and that Chavez was “not in my kind of shape.” It’s not the first time Ariza has done this and it’s getting a little old.

    • Arum says he plans on bringing welterweight titleholder Tim Bradley back in December. Possible opponents include Ruslan Provodnikov, Zab Judah, Lamont Peterson and Robert Guerrero. Guerrero is under contract with archrival Golden Boy but Arum told a handful of reporters last week that Bradley-Guerrero was a fight he would really like to make.

    • Hasim Rahman, who held the WBC heavyweight title for a year between 2005 and ’06, is getting another crack at a world title. Rahman, 39, will travel to Germany to take on Alexander Povetkin on Sept. 29 in a fight that will be televised in the U.S. on Epix.

    • Predictably, the Adrien Broner-Antonio DeMarco negotiations are progressing slowly. Broner, who is represented by influential and divisive manager Al Haymon, wants the lion’s share of the money and DeMarco isn’t willing to give it to him. Like I’ve said before: Fight each other or don’t fight anyone else in your weight class on premium TV.

    • How much did it cost 50 Cent to pry Yuri Gamboa away from Top Rank? That would be $1.2 million. From what I hear from Top Rank officials, that’s just about how much the company invested in Gamboa.

    • The always entertaining Gabriel Rosado (20-5) is back in action on Friday night, when he headlines the next installment of NBC Sports Network’s Fight Night series against Charles Whittaker (38-12-2). This is a big fight for Rosado: If he wins, he becomes the No. 1 contender for the IBF junior middleweight title held by Cornelius Bundrage.

    • While we all wait (and wait, and wait) for Pacquiao-Mayweather, it’s clear Arum is setting up the winner of next month’s junior welterweight fight between Brandon Rios and Mike Alvarado as the next opponent for Pacquiao. Rios-Alvarado is expected to be a war, which should give the winner a nice bounce going into a Pacquiao fight.

    • Showtime has to be pleased with the numbers for Saul Alvarez-Josesito Lopez on Saturday. According to Neilsen ratings, Alvarez-Lopez attracted 1.04 million viewers. Still, that’s a 42 percent drop from Alvarez’s HBO-televised fight against Kermit Cintron in November 2011, which drew 1.47 million viewers.

    • Amir Khan is reportedly set to name Virgil Hunter, best known for training super middleweight champion Andre Ward, as his new coach. That’s a good call. Hunter has a brilliant boxing mind who believes hit-and-don’t-get-hit is the only philosophy a fighter should live by. For a shaky-chinned fighter like Khan, that’s the best kind of trainer.

    • Speaking of Ward, cross Mikkel Kessler off the list of potential next opponents. Ward had expressed interest in a rematch with Kessler — whom he picked apart over 11 lopsided rounds in 2009 — but Kessler elected to face 37-year old Brian Magee, who owns a minor super middleweight title. It’s just as well: Ward-Kessler would have created no buzz in the United States.

    • Last week, Arum spent a lot of time talking to reporters about junior middleweight prospect John Jackson, even going as far as to say Jackson would get a televised slot on the Pacquiao pay-per-view telecast. But on Saturday, Jackson (13-1) ran into another pretty good prospect, the Jack Loew-trained Willie Nelson (19-1-1), who beat him in a close decision. Jackson still has potential and a lot of power (12 knockouts) but needs to polish his game so he can out box fighters he can’t knock out.

    – Chris Mannix

  • Published On Sep 18, 2012