Posts Tagged ‘Victor Ortiz’

Mayweather, Merchant blow up after fight

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Longtime HBO boxing analyst Larry Merchant (right) dared to ask tough questions of Floyd Mayweather and suffered the welterweight champ's ire. (Youtube)

Tempers boiled over Saturday during HBO analyst Larry Merchant’s in-ring interview with Floyd Mayweather after Mayweather’s sneak knockout of Victor Ortiz. In a clip that went viral almost immediately, Merchant peppers Mayweather with a string of tough questions about the controversial ending until Mayweather snaps:

Mayweather: You never give me a fair shake. You know that? So I’m gonna let you talk to Victor Ortiz, alright? I’m through! Put somebody else up here to give me an interview.

Merchant: What are you talking about?

Mayweather: You never give me a fair shake! HBO needs to fire you! You don’t know s— about boxing! You ain’t s—! You’re not s—!

Merchant: I wish I was 50 years younger and I’d kick your a–!

Mayweather: You won’t do s—!

Merchant is 80.

– Bryan Armen Graham


  • Published On Sep 18, 2011
  • Mayweather-Ortiz press conference quotes

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    Fresh off his knockout victory, Floyd Mayweather was in high spirits Saturday night during the post-fight press conference. (Ethan Miller/Getty Images)

    With an assist from Swanson Communications, here’s a sampling of quotes from Saturday’s post-fight press conference.

    FLOYD MAYWEATHER, New WBC Welterweight World Champion

    “This was another unbelievable performance. A lot of people want to know what happened. There were a couple head butts. S— happens in the sport of boxing.

    “Protect yourself at all times.

    “You wanted to see a knockout and that is what I gave you.

    “When Victor Ortiz was nine years old, I was dominating the sport of boxing.

    “This was an unbelievable training camp. This camp was blood sweat and tears. Being up all night. Running seven or eight miles. I deserved it.

    “I was always told to protect yourself at all times. My mouth was split open. I said keep it clean. Once you touch gloves, it is go time.

    “We came together to fight. It is fight time. You want to do me dirty and then two minutes later you want to be my friend? This is the hurting business.

    Read More…


  • Published On Sep 18, 2011
  • Youth likely to work against Ortiz

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    WBC welterweight champion Victor Ortiz is a heavy underdog Saturday against the far more experienced Floyd Mayweather at the MGM Grand. (AP)

    LAS VEGAS — When Victor Ortiz visited the Sports Illustrated offices in June, shortly after word of his Sept. 17 fight with Floyd Mayweather had spread but before the official press conference announcing the bout, the 24-year-old was at the outset of a three-month promotional journey unlike anything he’d ever been involved with.

    “They give me limo service now,” Ortiz remarked when asked about the biggest change in his life since becoming a world champion in April. “It’s kind of weird. It’s kind of disturbing actually, because I’m not like that. I’m a small-town kid.”

    The evidence of Ortiz’s youth was manifest throughout his hour-long visit. Until then, I’d never heard a fighter compare himself to a Pixar character. (“I’m like Dory from Finding Nemo,” he said when asked whether Mayweather’s trash talk affected him. “I forget things in like two seconds.”) He was prone to extemporaneous and rambling answers, an area he’s improved greatly on since June. Where most seasoned pro athletes guard their emotions like Fort Knox — particularly in the hyper-masculine realm of prizefighting – Ortiz fought tears unsuccessfully in a room full of SI staffers when recalling leaving his brother Temo behind in Kansas when the opportunity to train in Oxnard, Calif., presented itself.

    The promoters and the media (guilty!) have focused on the positive side of Ortiz’s youth, saying it’s been nearly a decade since Mayweather fought a young lion.

    Yes, Floyd is going to see something he hasn’t seen in a while — but that’s a far more preferable obstacle than something you’ve never seen before.

    Ortiz has never been in with a fighter of Mayweather’s caliber. Not even close. There’s young and there’s green, and the prevailing suspicion among the press as the stark reality of fight night approaches is Ortiz falls dangerously close toward the latter.

    Read More…


  • Published On Sep 17, 2011
  • Tempers flare at Mayweather-Ortiz weigh-in

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    Floyd Mayweather and Victor Ortiz faced off Friday after making weight at the MGM Grand. (AP)

    LAS VEGAS — If there was any takeaway from Friday afternoon’s weigh-in at the MGM Grand Garden Arena, it was the impressive fan turnout for Victor Ortiz.

    Of the estimated 4,000 who came to see Ortiz (147 pounds) and Floyd Mayweather (146½) make weight ahead of their Saturday welterweight title fight, at least two-thirds were clearly in favor of the 6-to-1 underdog from Garden City, Kan., by way of Ventura, Calif.

    Mayweather, who operates out of Las Vegas and thus is the theoretical hometown favorite, was booed lustily by Ortiz fans no doubt thrilled to celebrate Mexican Independence Day weekend with the heir apparent to Oscar De La Hoya in a such a prominent role. Or maybe it was disgruntled observers just hoping to see Mayweather lose, as the prevalent chants of “41-and-1″ might suggest. Regardless, the atmosphere was buzzing as fans continued to trickle in more than 20 minutes before the fighters hit the stage.

    After coming in under the welterweight limit of 147 pounds, Mayweather joined Ortiz for the traditional face off at the front of the stage. When Ortiz flexed his right bicep and slapped it with his left hand, Mayweather gripped his right hand around Ortiz’s throat and the two were quickly separated by Golden Boy CEO Richard Schaefer (and their entire camps, who had surrounded them).

    In addition to ring announcer Michael Buffer and comedians Kevin Hart and Paul Rodriguez — who teamed to emcee the proceedings — former titleholders Zab Judah, Devon Alexander, Paulie Malignaggi and Jean Pascal took the stage before Ortiz and Mayweather hit the scales. Also spotted were NBA stars Jermaine O’Neal, Trevor Ariza and Caron Butler.

    Another noteworthy attendee was was Floyd Mayweather Sr., who stood on the floor beside the stage and went unacknowledged by Floyd Jr. The two hadn’t been seen together, and reportedly haven’t spoken, since the long-simmering tension father and son boiled over in spectacular fashion during the first episode of the 24/7 Mayweather/Ortiz docuseries.

    For one, Ortiz said the sound and fury of Friday’s posturing signified nothing. “It’s all a big joke,” he said of the physical exchange with Mayweather. “It’s nothing.”

    – Bryan Armen Graham


  • Published On Sep 17, 2011
  • Athletes, boxers, media predict fight

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    Two-time NBA All-Star Caron Butler (right), with Kevin Hart at Friday's weigh-in, predicts Mayweather will win by knockout. (Ethan Miller/Getty Images)

    The crack staff at Swanson Communications polled more than 30 athletes and media members ahead of Saturday’s Mayweather-Ortiz fight. Interestingly, George Foreman (now on Twitter!) favors Ortiz. Nearly everybody else picked Mayweather. Here’s a selection of the responses:

    ATHLETES/BOXERS

    Mayweather will win by decision. I think Mayweather wins because of his speed and experience. Even though I like the young fella Ortiz, I have Mayweather winning this one.”

    - Carlos Boozer, Forward, Chicago Bulls

    * * *

    Mayweather KO in 8.

    - Caron Butler, Forward, NBA Champion Dallas Mavericks

    * * *

    “The champ will walk in the ring as a champ and leave the ring as THE champ. Floyd is the best; nothing more needs to be said.”

    - Mark Cuban, Owner of the NBA Champion Dallas Mavericks

    * * *

    “My opinion is that Mayweather is going to win. Mayweather has tremendous defense and speed. Mayweather also has the power, and we all know Victor can get hurt. Victor Ortiz, however, has a lot of heart and he showed that in his last fight. I believe Ortiz also has the power to change the fight and beat Mayweather. I believe the fight will go to distance and Mayweather will win by points. I don’t see a knock out happening.”

    - Juan “Baby Bull” Diaz, Former World Champion

    * * *

    “This fight presents a unique opportunity for Victor Ortiz; he takes a punch and gives as well. By seven rounds, I expect Ortiz to pull ahead with Mayweather holding on, avoiding being KO’d.”

    - George Foreman, Former World Champion and International Boxing Hall of Fame Inductee

    * * *

    “Victor Ortiz is a young, hungry lion with an incredible story. How can anybody not root for a guy like him? He’ll leave everything in the ring come fight night and the fans will get their money’s worth, but Floyd Mayweather’s speed and intelligence will be the key to a unanimous decision victory. Floyd will weather an early storm from Ortiz and make the proper adjustments to come out victorious. Floyd’s been a tremendous fighter for many years. We’ll see how many great fights he has left in him.”

    - Robert Guerrero, WBA and WBO Interim Lightweight World Champion

    * * *

    Mayweather by unanimous points decision or stoppage. This promises to be a very interesting fight, as Mayweather is coming off a long layoff and Ortiz is in the prime of his fighting life and fresh off a great win over the unbeaten Andre Berto. Ortiz may have his moments in the fight as Mosley did, but ultimately I believe Mayweather’s perfection will shine through as the fight goes on. Whatever the outcome, I’m very excited about this fight and will no doubt be watching live.”

    - David Haye, Former World Champion

    * * *

    “You ask me as a fan and as a guy with boxing credibility. I think the win goes to the guy with the higher fighting IQ and the experience. You have one guy who has been in the game longer than the other, the guy who comes from a boxing family. I love Ortiz. Would I be surprised if Ortiz gives Floyd all he can handle? No! But, with Floyd’s style and Ortiz’s style, I see Floyd winning this fight convincingly.

    - Bernard Hopkins, WBC and Ring Magazine Light Heavyweight World Champion

    * * *

    “It’s going to be a tough fight for Victor and I hope he does well, but Mayweather has more experience and I think Mayweather will beat him in the later rounds on points. If it’s the same Victor that turned up for Berto, it’s going to be a tough fight for Mayweather.”

    - Amir Khan, WBA Super Lightweight and IBF Junior Welterweight World Champion

    * * *

    I predict Floyd with his talent and experience. This fight could be his toughest and most dangerous fight if Ortiz doesn’t freeze in this event. The eyes will reveal the truth.”

    - Sugar Ray Leonard, Former World Champion and International Boxing Hall of Fame Inductee

    * * *

    Mayweather will outbox Ortiz to get a clear, unanimous decision, but if Ortiz fights like he did against Berto, Mayweather will be stopped.”

    - Marcos Maidana, WBA Super Lightweight World Champion

    * * *

    “I think it’s a very competitive fight, contrary to what some of the media are saying. Victor is in fine form as of late, and he’s really come into his own these last couple years and more so than physically, he’s come into his own on a mental level, and you can see the confidence written all over his face and in his demeanor in general. Having said that, Floyd Mayweather to me might be the best fighter to ever put on a pair of boxing gloves. It will be interesting to see now that he’s no longer a spring chicken, if these layoffs will have any effect on him. He is a reflex/reaction type fighter, and those are the first things you lose as age creeps up on you. Age may be a factor because Floyd is up against a hungry young lion. I pick Floyd in a close fight that goes the distance and might even be controversial, but if he’s lost anything with his age, I can’t say I’d be hugely surprised if Victor pulls off the upset. Five years ago, I would pick Floyd in a less competitive fight even if not a dominant one, of course, that’s with the Victor of today against the Floyd of back then, but that’s not a knock on Victor, it’s just that Floyd in his prime was unreal and would beat very good fighters and at times make it even look easy. I like this fight a lot; I applaud Victor for taking it while accepting the random drug tests. I would love to have that in pro boxing for everyone and not just Mayweather and his opponents. The NFL just implemented a random HGH test as well as minor league baseball. Pro soccer players are also subject to mandatory random tests, so if the best professional athletes in the world are now being subjected to them, then I don’t see why boxers should not, at the very least on a world class level. So I commend Victor, and I like what Floyd is doing. This is an exemplary fight not just because they are world class athletes, but obviously they are making a point that they are gentlemen and fair and honest sportsmen as well.”

    - Paulie Malignaggi, Former World Champion

    * * *

    “I think Mayweather will win a decision. He has more experience and he’s too smart and quick. I’m not taking away anything from Victor, I think he will give a great fight, but I think Mayweather will win.”

    - Abner Mares, IBF Bantamweight World Champion and WBC Silver Bantamweight Champion

    * * *

    “I’m picking Ortiz in a decision.”

    - Willis McGahee, Running Back, Denver Broncos

    * * *

    “I am expecting a tough fight for Mayweather. I feel Victor Ortiz is a man on a mission … a determined, young, strong and embittered man. Life, family and critics have created a monster inside Victor. Pretty Boy is in for a rough night September 17 — another storm Floyd will endure. Mature skills and experience win fights. I think Victor’s momentum and strengths outweigh Floyd’s, but Floyd’s poise and polished skills will be the deciding factor as always. Close rounds will be tough to score. Victor may take the early lead, but middle and final rounds will be all Mayweather right hands and uppercuts. I see Mayweather winning a close decision in a fight where both men face adversity.”

    - Sergio Mora, Former World Champion

    * * *

    Mayweather will win by a decision. He is too fast for Ortiz.”

    - Israel Vazquez, Former World Champion

    * * *

    Mayweather has too much experience plus he’s the best till somebody beats him, but it’s going to be exciting.”

    - Micky Ward, Former World Title Contender

    * * *

    I think that Mayweather will win the fight. He’s gonna box Ortiz, do a lot of counterpunching and jabs to the body to keep Ortiz off balance. Exciting if Ortiz fights [Mayweather] like he did Berto, but Floyd is not Berto, so I think Floyd will win by decision or maybe KO if Ortiz is not careful.”

    - Winky Wright, Former World Champion

    * * *

    MEDIA MEMBERS

    Mayweather by TKO 9. While Ortiz is a dangerous opponent, he doesn’t have Mayweather’s experience, ring generalship and ability to adjust on the fly. Floyd’s counterpunching and defense will prove to be the difference as he controls the fight, picks Ortiz apart and it results in a stoppage.”

    - Steve Carp, Las Vegas Review-Journal

    * * *

    “I’m predicting Floyd Mayweather in seven rounds.

    - DJ Clue, Power 105 Disc Jockey (New York City)

    * * *

    “Ortiz needs to take it to Mayweather early. He will be dangerous for Mayweather the first four or five rounds. Mayweather will work him out by then and break him down. I predict a late stoppage or points win for Mayweather.”

    - Gareth Davies, Telegraph (UK)

    * * *

    “There will not be a knockout in this fight, but it will be a fight in which Mayweather eventually wins. He is still more skilled. He is quicker and faster, but Ortiz will compete. He will not quit. He will compete with heart, but ultimately Mayweather will show that he is the best in the weight class and one of the best in the world.”

    - Carl Dukes, Host of Put Up Your Dukes with Carl Dukes on ESPN Radio in Houston

    * * *

    “The variable is Floyd’s inactivity: he’s fought just 24 rounds since knocking out Ricky Hatton in 2007 and he’s new to the role of old master trying to tame a young lion. Still, Mayweather has never been in serious trouble in any fight and is far more familiar with the unique pressures of the megafight stage. It says here Floyd survives a scary moment, not unlike the second round of the Shane Mosley fight, before coasting to a comfortable decision.”

    - Bryan Graham, Sports Illustrated

    * * *

    Floyd Mayweather is going to win the fight.

    - Tom Joyner, radio host of the nationally syndicated Tom Joyner Morning Show

    * * *

    Floyd Mayweather by unanimous decision.

    - Jaime Motta, ESPN and ESPN Deportes On-Air Personality

    * * *

    “Victor Ortiz has to start fast and stay that way for 12 rounds. He won’t outbox or outthink Floyd Mayweather; he has to jump on him and pressure him and not give him a chance to breathe. That task will be aided if Mayweather, at 34 and with just two fights in four years, shows rust or age. If he doesn’t, then expect Mayweather’s skilled inside countering to come to the fore as the fight evolves. By round four, Ortiz is likely to start walking into increasingly well-timed counters, and after a couple of exciting back-and-forth rounds, Mayweather will take control and sweep the second half en route to a possibly close but certainly clear decision win.

    - Kieran Mulvaney, Reuters and ESPN.com

    * * *

    Mayweather by decision.

    - Lance Pugmire, Los Angeles Times

    * * *

    Mayweather is the best pound-for-pound boxer in the world and I am pretty convinced that the only guy who can beat him is me.”

    - Sid Rosenberg, 560AM WQAM Miami Radio Personality

    * * *

    Mayweather TKO in the 10th round. The only way that Victor can win is either by knockout or by being aggressive. Fighters who have done that such has Genaro Hernandez, Diego Corrales, Ricky Hatton and Arturo Gatti have taken sustained technical beat downs from Floyd before being stopped.”

    - Lem Satterfield, The Ring

    * * *

    “Floyd will finally return to the ring and take out some frustrations. Ortiz will provide a tough fight and a southpaw challenge but more than his blood will be tested. Mayweather will come prepared and make it a long night. Ortiz won’t be able to KO Mayweather and he’s only gone 12 rounds once. Mayweather by unanimous decision.

    - Jim Slater, AFP

    * * *

    Mayweather KO in the 11th. He is a superior boxer. You can’t hurt what you can’t hit. I don’t believe Victor Ortiz can hit Mayweather. Ortiz can be had. He gets hit. He is going to fight valiantly, but he has never been in the ring with a boxer like Floyd Mayweather.”

    - Stephen A. Smith, ESPN Personality

    * * *

    Mayweather by 10th round TKO.

    - Tim Smith, New York Daily News

    * * *

    Mayweather in the 10th round.

    -George Willis, New York Post


  • Published On Sep 16, 2011
  • Experts’ predictions for Mayweather-Ortiz

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    Floyd Mayweather is an 8-to-1 favorite over Victor Ortiz in Saturday's welterweight championship fight. (AP)

    SI.com’s boxing experts predict Saturday’s welterweight title fight between Floyd Mayweather and Victor Ortiz. Share your prediction in the comments below.

    CHRIS MANNIX

    Ortiz has the edge in youth, strength and, presumably, stamina. He’s easily the toughest opponent Mayweather has faced since his high-profile win over Oscar De La Hoya. But you can measure ring savvy or an ability to absorb and not be overwhelmed by the moment. Ortiz will challenge Mayweather early but by the ninth round Floyd will be cruising. Mayweather by unanimous decision.

    RICHARD O’BRIEN

    There’s every reason to believe this will be a competitive, even an exciting fight — and quite possibly a dangerous one for Mayweather. Ortiz’s blend of size, power and youth is something Mayweather hasn’t faced in a long time. And, if it comes to that, Mayweather hasn’t faced anyone in a long time. A 16-month layoff is significant, especially at age 34.

    Still, Ortiz is unlikely to be able to show Mayweather anything that Floyd hasn’t seen a thousand times — and Floyd has a thousand moves that Ortiz has never seen. I’m sure Mayweather thinks this will be an easy night’s work. And it should be. But there’s a real chance that Ortiz could tag Floyd early and take him out of his game, make it a rough, bruising bout. Mayweather hasn’t really had any all-out wars and if Ortiz — who, despite the “quitter” label hung on him after the Maidana fight, has shown great resilience — can rock him and take the fight to the trenches, he could make Floyd look old and maybe even stop him.

    In the end, though, I expect this to be another frustratingly slick performance by a great, if never as great as he thinks, fighter. Mayweather by unanimous decision.

    BRYAN ARMEN GRAHAM

    Mayweather stays in shape 24/7/365, so I don’t read too much into the layoff. But consider the ages of Floyd’s last eight opponents: Shane Mosley (38), Juan Manuel Marquez (36), Ricky Hatton (29), Oscar De La Hoya (34), Carlos Baldomir (35), Zab Judah (28), Sharmba Mitchell (35), Arturo Gatti (33). No shortage of marquee names there, but it’s been nearly a decade since Mayweather was put in against a competitive young fighter.

    Ortiz has a pressure style that could trouble Mayweather. A number of fighters have gotten to Floyd early over the years — Chop Chop Corley and Mosley jump to mind — but none have finished the job.  Mayweather is a very clever boxer with exceptional ring intelligence, and he’ll need every ounce of his ability to weather the early Ortiz onslaught. But as long as he can avoid getting into a shootout, he’ll prevail. Victor Ortiz has spent the past four months saying he wants the best Floyd Mayweather to show up on fight night, not a faded edition. He’ll get his wish. Mayweather by unanimous decision.


  • Published On Sep 16, 2011
  • Random testing presented challenges for Ortiz’s camp

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    LAS VEGAS — As Victor Ortiz’s strength and conditioning coach, Joe “Hoss” Janik bears the burden of making sure Ortiz is in top physical condition. That duty got a little more challenging during this training camp. As part of the deal to fight Mayweather, Ortiz agreed to random blood and urine testing conducted by the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency.

    “It was definitely more intrusive,” Janik said. “You always have someone else involved, someone looking over your shoulder. When there is that much scrutiny, you have to check, double check and triple check everything.”

    “We went with a lot more natural approach to this fight. We still supplemented a little bit, but we got more of the vitamins, the antioxidants that we needed out of foods.”

    With the USADA keeping a strict list of acceptable ingredients in supplements, Janik says he had to swap out a few supplements for different brands.

    “There were a couple of companies in general that we used in the past and just when we threw their names out there to USADA, they said ‘we have had some problems with them in the past,” Janik said. “They didn’t think they were purposefully trying to do something, but they didn’t have as good a check and double check policy on the product. They said they had a bicyclist that used a product from a certain company that ending up testing dirty. When they went back and researched it, it turned out he didn’t do anything wrong, there was just something in the supplement that should not have been there.”

    Despite the extra work, Janik said USADA’s presence did not affect Ortiz’s training.

    “T don’t think Victor really noticed it,” Janik said. “There were little things; when he had a headache, we had to shoot them a list of [painkillers], just to see what was OK for him to take. Other than that, it was all normal.”

    – Chris Mannix


  • Published On Sep 16, 2011
  • Ortiz camp deflects Floyd’s latest verbal jab

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    Floyd Mayweather is up to his old tricks, messing with his opponent's via the media. (AP)

    LAS VEGAS – Floyd Mayweather isn’t afraid to get his hands dirty. At a press conference before his 2001 showdown with Diego Corrales, Mayweather told reporters he was leaving a ticket for Corrales’s wife. Why? Because several months earlier Corrales had been arrested on charges he assaulted his 98-pound, pregnant wife, breaking her collarbone and ribs and bruising her spine. Mayweather battered Corrales over ten rounds. Corrales later spent 14 months in prison.

    The point: psychological warfare is part of Mayweather’s game.

    Mayweather was at it again Wednesday. At the final press conference promoting his welterweight title fight with Victor Ortiz, Mayweather told reporters that Ortiz’s father — who Ortiz has said beat him and left the family when he was 12 — never left him at all.

    “It’s not true,” said Ortiz’s trainer, Danny Garcia. “I don’t know where Floyd got that information. His father left him. His father was drinking too much and he was out of control. When he lost his wife, he was getting worse.”

    Several members of Ortiz’s team believe Mayweather’s source is Robert Garcia, Ortiz’s former trainer and the estranged brother of Danny. On Wednesday, Mayweather said he planned on leaving Robert tickets for the fight.

    “Probably came from him,” Danny said. “Robert doesn’t want Victor to win this fight. Robert doesn’t like me to be above him. I don’t know why. When he was a trainer, I was working for Coke. I wasn’t a trainer. I used to tell him ‘with my heart, I wish you good luck. I’m happy that you have good fighter. I want you to be on the top.’ Now that I’m here, I’m doing good and he doesn’t want me to do good.”

    Ortiz says Mayweather’s tactic will have no affect on him.

    Read More…


  • Published On Sep 14, 2011
  • Watch: Final Mayweather-Ortiz presser

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    Watch the final press Floyd Mayweather-Victor Ortiz press conference here on Wednesday (3:45 p.m. ET/12:45 p.m. PT). Mayweather, Ortiz, Erik Morales, Pablo Cesar Cano, Jessie Vargas and Josesito Lopez will be together at the Hollywood Theatre at the MGM Grand (with Canelo Alvarez and Alfonso Gomez joining via satellite from Los Angeles) to discuss their respective fights.


  • Published On Sep 14, 2011


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