By Stephen "Breadman" Edward
The Daily Bread Mailbag returns with Stephen "Breadman" Edwards discussing numerous topics - including the recently announced mega-fight between Canelo Alvarez and Gennady Golovkin, the continued praise of the heavyweight blockbuster between Anthony Joshua and Wladimir Klitschko, and more.
You have always pumped AJ. But no one expected this. How good is he? Does Wlad do better in a rematch? Can AJ clear out the whole division?
Bread’s Response: Whoa! Nothing like a real heavyweight championship fight. Nothing like it. It’s the best sporting event in the world.
I had confidence in Joshua more because of his disposition and aura than his ability. Sometimes athletes are just anointed for greatness. Sometimes they just have a way about them. Stars come out for Joshua. Dr. Dre skypes the kid. Jay Z travels to see him. 90k screaming fans came out to watch him. When that many people see the “It” in you, most likely you’re special.
The fight itself lived up to the hype. It was probably one of the top 25 heavyweight title fights ever. Not on the Ali/Frazier 1 and 3 level but it was a great fight.
First I want to talk about Wladimir Klitschko. Wlad fought one of the best fights of his career. People say he was 41 and he was but I haven’t seen Wlad look that good under live fire in a very long time. He was on his toes moving at a productive rhythm. His hook was booming. His jab was pumping. He was resilient and determined. He overcame adversity and didn’t waver. That was one of the best losses a fighter can have. On the lines of Hearn’s losses to Leonard and Hagler. And Arguello’s loss to Pryor. Wlad deserves a stand up for being a great champion and taking the favorite younger man to the brink. Thank you champ.
Onto Joshua… I have always believed Joshua was the best heavyweight in the world. But being the best and beating everyone is different. Joshua is young and he has flaws. But he has a regal way about him. He believes he’s destined to be special. He’s also one really hard puncher with good punch variety. His punch variety won this fight for him. Unlike most tall punchers who rely on a 1-2. Joshua threw uppercuts, hooks and body shots and it overwhelmed Wlad. Joshua was less skilled but more fighter.
I would favor Joshua earlier in the rematch because Wlad may not be able to go that dark place again. Joshua will because he won and he’s younger.
I think Joshua is the best heavyweight in the world. But if he fights a slew of young guys in their primes he won’t run the table. Meaning if he fights a clear minded Fury, Wilder, Parker and anyone else who emerges as a clear threat he can lose. That’s how boxing works. I wouldn’t favor any of them to beat him individually but collectively defeating all of those different styles takes a toll. I also think Joshua may be better served to be a little bit smaller as far as muscles. The bigger a fighter gets the more difficult it is to recover oxygen after they explode. It took Joshua 3 rounds to recover from trying to knock Wlad out in the 5th round. The huge muscles suck up lots of oxygen.
As a Joshua fan that is terribly concerning. Wlad is a great fighter but he’s not a killer by nature and Joshua is fortunate he is not. It’s something Joshua will have to improve on in the future. But for right now AJ is the king of the world. Congratulations.
No one seems to be complaining loudly but I think the stoppage was early. I saw your comment on twitter and I agree with you. Also do you know if there was any testing. Wladimir was definitely hurt but I felt as though Joshua was punching himself out. Wlad was also making him miss some of the punches before the referee jumped in. I just feel the fight could have had even more drama had the referee not jumped in so fast.
Bread’s Response: I hate to nitpick. I really do. Last Saturday was a great day of boxing. But in yes the stoppage was early. Initially I said to myself Wlad didn’t complain too much so I won’t. But after watching the HBO telecast and then listening to his HBO interview I know I’m not that blood thirsty.
If you judge the mood of the fight. Joshua needed recovery after huge outburst. Wlad was reeling but he wasn’t helpless. I don’t want to make this into a controversial ending to take away from Joshua’s great victory. But I truly feel it was a little early. Wlad deserved a chance to rally again. He fought the fight of his life and he’s at the end of the road. I know I will offend some people by saying that. Some who are always on the side of caution. But I’m not always on the side of caution. Most of history’s greatest fights were great because referees gave fighters the benefit of the doubt and those fighters came back from adversity. Oh well. At least Wlad was a gentleman about it.
Some idiots in the comment sections of your last mailbag asked a few dumb questions. I won’t address them all but he accused Danny Jacobs of being on PEDs. Jacobs took VADA in his fight with GGG. What else do you want him to do?
Bread’s Response: You can’t get upset at the comment section of anything on social media or the internet. It will drive you crazy. Danny Jacobs deserves full credit for a career best performance. He did it under VADA. The only thing that any of the fighters who take VADA can do more, is to take VADA 24/7-365. Like Nonito Donaire did. Not just when you have a fight. But no one at the current moment seems to do that. But again Jacobs was terrific and I assume he’s clean. He turned in a career best performance under the world’s most stringent testing needle.
I've got to admit, for the last 18 months or so I've always believed that GGG would dominate a potential fight with Canelo. I thought GGG was too big and too powerful for him. After just watching what Canelo did to JCJr I finally see where you are coming from with thinking the fight is very close. I've never seen Canelo be that dominant and, while I expected him to beat JCJr, I never expected him to shut him out the way he just did.
Given what you saw in that fight, and in the GGG-Jacobs fight, is Canelo actually the favorite in a fight with GGG? I know JCJr isn't a great fighter, has gotten by on his name and cheated the grind for his entire career, but he was so much bigger than Canelo I thought he would give him some resistance. Canelo made him look like a third rate sparring partner. Would love to know your current thoughts on GGG-Alvarez.
Bread’s Response: I’ve been telling you guys forever that GGG would not dominate Canelo. Now it has gotten to the point that most in the know view it as a 50/50 fight. So much so that Vegas is opening GGG as only a slight favorite. Golden Boy and Team Canelo has done a great job in putting this fight off until the perception changed.
It pains me to say it because I have chosen to defend GGG’s greatness for several years. I strongly feel the only fighter who was willing to face him in his most destructive form was Andre Ward. I believe GGG was avoided by 3 straight lineal champions at 160lbs. Starting with Sergio Martinez and Miguel Cotto up until Canelo Alvarez. It has taken GGG 5 years to get a crack at the lineal title which is shameful. But I also feel this fight is 50/50 at the moment.
In Golovkin’s last 16 rounds scored in his last two fights there is a chance he has won just 50% of those rounds. He took on two in their prime top 25 in the world type of fighters in Kell Brook and Danny Jacobs. But nevertheless he is not riding as high as he once was. I have seen this wait out scenario many times before….GGG is not a shot fighter by any means but he has proven to be human lately. Let’s just say the fight is ripe for Canelo.
This fight reminds me of Hagler vs Duran. Hagler being GGG and Duran being Canelo. Duran was able to stay with the bigger Hagler for lots of spells because at time in his career Duran didn’t want to be a tracker and Hagler was in front of him. Canelo has never wanted to be one so GGG’s style plays into his hands. Hagler was 29 so he was younger than GGG is at the moment but he had that hard nosed technician style that couldn’t overwhelm the freakishly skillful Duran. If you watch the fight and score on who’s winning and not who is impressing you will see Hagler won cleaner than people realize. Nevertheless hardnosed technician don’t usually overwhelm skillful savants.
Canelo is also bigger naturally than Duran. And much closer to his physical prime than the 32 yr old Duran was.
I see Canelo winning earlier rounds with sharpness and crowd friendly flashy punches. I see GGG pulling even because of a busier workrate and that ram rod jab. The question in this fight is stamina. Both have stamina issues in their own way. Canelo could not force a stoppage on a clearly overmatched Chavez Jr because he doesn’t like to push. If he catches you and critically hurts you he will try to ko you. But he won’t turn up the volume to a point where he will force a stoppage. I believe it’s because he has explosive muscles and he is conscious to not allow himself to be drained.
GGG on the other hand will push the envelope. His workrate is insane. But for some reason in the second third of his fights he needs a visual rest. I saw him huffing and puffing vs Kell Brook, Willie Monroe, Martin Murray, Kaseem Ouma and Danny Jacobs. That is too many times to be a coincidence. I have no idea why that happens to him but it is a concern.
I believe Golovkin has the better natural stamina. Meaning he can exert himself more and recover better. But Canelo is faster, quicker and has better defensive instincts. Canelo also has a great counter to a jab which is Golovkin’s most important punch. Canelo likes to rest on the ropes and that is where GGG is most dangerous. Both fighters have excellent chins so I see this fight going some rounds if not the distance. You also have to factor in the effect Canelo has on the judges. He always gets the benefit of the doubt. I think he will vs GGG. GGG will have the burden of proof meaning he will have to do a little more to get credit.
It’s not so much what Canelo did to Chavez. The more important factor is Canelo has been allowed to mature and wait out this fight, while GGG has been matched tough and looked human. Because of that Canelo will be riding super high with confidence.
What's popping bro?
Although you picked Wlad
Still amazed at your analysis "Also I think Josh can win late. He's a calm man. Wlad gasses at times because of his anxiety. What Joshua has to be careful of is tipping his hat off his attack to the more experienced fighter. Wlad can knock him out. "
Man that almost happened. Not sure how you predict these things lol.
How do you see a fight with Josh vs Deontay?
Bread’s Response: Thanks bro but I didn’t pick Wlad. I said that but I picked AJ the day the fight was announced and I never wavered.
Aj vs Deontay is a super fight where someone will be Kod. Maybe the biggest punching super fight ever. I can’t think of a fight where two heavyweight punchers of this magnitude fought in their primes with ko %s this insane. This is like the 74 version of Foreman fighting the 38 version of Joe Louis as far as sheer punching power.
Hi Bread, based on AJ's performance against Wlad last weekend, how do you see these matchups playing out:
Joshua-Fury lets hope he comes back but how do you think would AJ fare against the Fury that beat Klitschko? Who do you think performed better against Wlad?
thanks for the work you put into these mailbags. Keep it up!
Bread’s Response: I think Fury beat Klitschko easier but Joshua impressed more if that makes sense. Fury was never in danger of getting knocked out but he also didn’t score a dramatic late round ko. If Fury returns to form I think he would win a decision over Joshua. Joshua still has to learn to track a fighter down. Fury can really move and box. The problem is Fury looks to be over 400lbs and he hasn’t fought in 2 years. He may have abused his body to a point of no return.
Wilder can knock anyone out with his right hand. But in terms of skills I would favor Joshua over Wilder at this moment but I wouldn’t bet. Wilder’s legs scare me. They don’t seem steady and Joshua is a huge man. Wilder also loses rounds to much lesser fighters. But his confidence in landing his money shot is always prevalent. Joshua is over muscled and he may not have the reaction time to defend the much quicker Wilder. This fight is a guaranteed ko.
I can’t call King Kong Ortiz. He’s probably the most skillful heavyweight in the world. But testing positive for PEDs, his age and his last couple of performances leave me perplexed. I would assume Joshua would force him to test and I just don’t know how he will perform under the needle. He has been quietly struggling with his last couple of performances but most have not noticed. I have. And I have no idea how this fight will go.
Hey Breadman - as a younger boxing fan in the 90's , one fight that stands out in my mind is "Cool" Vince Phillips' upset TKO of Kostya Tzyu (sic) . What a breathtaking fight. Phillips made a lot of new fans that night , but somehow never never got a rematch with Kostya . It seemed Cool Vince had Kostya's number ...how do you think a rematch would have played out ?
Bread’s Response: I don’t know if Phillips had Tszyu’s number. He would have had to beat him again in order for me to say that. But Phillips was a very good fighter. He had 3 losses going into the Tszyu fight but they were at welterweight. One was a cut stoppage. The other was a close loss to a slick mover. And the other to a prime Ike Quartey.
Phillips went on to defend his title 3 times after he beat Tszyu. I always found it strange that Tszyu never got a rematch that presumably he could have gotten. He went straight into an eliminator in his comeback fight but he never went after Phillips again who was available.
The more I think about it the more it seems strange. It sort of gives me the feel of Tyson vs Buster Douglas. When a huge favorite loses the way Tszyu and Tyson did you usually see them run it back like Lennox Lewis did with Hasim Rahman. But for some reason Tyson or Tszyu never did. Hmmm….
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