by Stephen "Breadman" Edwards
The Daily Bread Mailbag returns with Stephen "Breadman" Edwards tackling topics such as Anthony Joshua vs. Joseph Parker, Mikey Garcia vs. Vasyl Lomachenko, Dmitry Bivol vs. Sullivan Barrera, Guillermo Rigondeaux, and more.
Good evening friend, had to come to you about some recent fight news. Do you think Bivols teams troubled response to Barreras testing demands is an admittance to being dirty? Also it seems that ever since Dana White got a taste of boxing money, we can't get rid of him. Talk to you soon.
Bread’s Response: I don’t know if Bivol’s team is troubled but I am interested in seeing if they accept VADA. I’m also interested to see HOW LONG it takes them to accept it. If they don’t start testing within the next say week, then I would view it as suspect behavior.
I recently read that DIMITRI BIVOL and team are dragging their feet in agreeing for Ped testing for their upcoming March encounter. If true the reluctance of team Bivol raises I would think serious questions and concerns. I work in Professional Sports at the highest level which affords me information on Peds and 1st hand knowledge on the benefits a athlete will occur while using. It very simple....
What ever skills the athlete had beforehand.........every single one of those skills will be enhanced. My interest in boxing comes from growing up in a household full of boxing fans and I like to immerse myself in the past ERA and the current. The Peds out there today are very sophisticated. The athletes simply cycle and clear their system in a short amount of time. But the benefits remain in the 90 to 95% range. With a fight of this magnitude no fan or anyone related to the fight should feel comfortable with Bivol's camp dragging their feet on a matter that they should be concerned what field Barrera is playing on. If Bivol drags this situation on and then consents to testing say 4-5 weeks out......that would be a red flag and Barrera should really be concerned.
Bread’s Response: I agree 100%. The great champion Juan Manuel Marquez dragged his feet vs Timothy Bradley taking VADA in their fightt. But he did eventually take it. It always bothered me that the media sort of overlooked it……No one compared Marquez’s performance vs Pacquiao without VADA with his performance vs Bradley with VADA. The fights were back to back…..I realy respect Marquez and I think he’s one of the best fighters of the last quarter century. But no one should be above respectful and logical suspicion. PEDs are real and they effect performance level.
It also bothers me that the least marketable fighter in any PED controversy gets overlooked. No one seems to care about Sullivan Barrera’s claims. The boxing media in my opinion as whole is not objective and most are flat out corrupt. They care about access and sponsorship from the star fighters or entities.
I personally I am picking Bivol to defeat Barrera by early ko. But fights are won in the ring not on paper. I understand that Bivol is what the media and industry wants as the star. But those things have to be earned in the ring. Barrera is a very capable fighter and he deserves an even playing field.
In fairness to Bivol the fight is 2 months out. A training camp is 2 months. So let’s see what happens in the next few days and see if he begins testing. I don’t want to brand Bivol a “dirty” fighter. I also want to be fair to Barrera. He has openly made his claim and I am sure Team Bivol read it. If Bivol waits and puts off the testing then I think that would make Bivol highly suspicious. We also have to ponder what was the hold up anyway..Let’s see how it plays out.
Hey Bread always a fan of your mailbag first of all, keep up the good work training and the excellent insight.
I know you enjoy writing and talking about the heavyweights since it's been so long since they've been relevant. A couple questions - with the very solid chin that Parker has been showing and the ability to get inside enough to land some great hay-makers in his recent fights I think he has a very solid shot to beat Joshua. I was a big fan of Parker's before he reached double digit wins and I think he's definitely started to level off while Joshua is on the rise but I think they're meeting at a point where Joshua will be more susceptible to the style. I think of it more 60-40 or 55-45 for Joshua and when you take in account both of them have some stamina issues but also finish fairly strong I think there will be a LOT of moments in the middle for each to take advantage for a KO. What have you seen in Joshua that makes you think he'll be able to hold off an aggressive guy who can get in just enough with that handspeed?
Secondly, Hughie Fury doesn't look like he's an elite heavyweight but the way he was able to box against Parker and the chin he showed taking some of those punches looked very solid, I think he would fare very well in a fight against Joshua based off of style. Joshua can be out-jabbed which I surprisingly saw often against Whyte and doesn't have the foot or hand-speed to get inside like Parker. Hughie probably doesn't have the mental ability to deal with everything Joshua can bring but how do you see that fight playing out?
Now, for my favorite division - I think you might be sleeping on Mairis Breidis in the Cruiserweight division. I see him outscoring and being ahead on cards against Usyk and forcing Usyk into fighting more aggressively. I think however it plays out that fight is going to be an elite chess match early and a very exciting last 4-5 rounds. I know it's easy to get excited for Dorticos-Gassiev but this fight, and Breidis himself, is going to be very intriguing.
Bread’s Response: Anything can happen in the heavyweight division. I don’t want to overthink Joshua vs Parker. Sure Parker can do lots of things but I just think Joshua is a class above and he will prove it in a shootout. The one thing I like about Joshua is he’s proven he can not only box but he can fight. In his troubled times he starting chunking em and he’s prevailed. I look for a mid round stoppage in a really good fight.
Both of the Fury cousins have difficult boxing rhythms to catch. I think they would both trouble Joshua. But troubling someone and beating them are different.
Briedis can really fight and an upset wouldn’t shock me. Especially if he can make Usyk come forward. I think the match up is intriguing because each scoring blow will mean so much. I think the fight goes the distance.
What’s up bread? This is my first time writing to you. I always check out your mailbags and have to say you bless me with knowledge each and every week. Anyway my question has to do with Mikey Garcia. I notice he’s getting a lot of heat from people online for his choice of opponents and his reasoning. He said he chose Lipinets (who is a undefeated 140 lb title holder) over Robert Easter Jr and Jorge Linares due the the purse being better. He said in order for the Linares fight to happen that he and Golden Boy both thought it would be better to wait until the summer once the holidays are out the way and people will have a bit more money to spend to attend the fight. About the Easter fight I believe he said something similar. That they both wanted to be well compensated and the budget for that fight wasn’t enough at this time. I don’t believe he is ducking either. I’m a big Mikey fan so maybe I’m being biased but I believe he stops Linares in a exciting fight that lasts about 7 rounds and the accumulation of Garcia’s punches will be too much and will force a stoppage. As far as the Easter fight I view that as a tougher fight due to the height and reach advantages Easter possesses. I still think Mikey beats him after 5 close first rounds where he adjusts to the physical differences and shows the world a crazy Mikey Garcia inside game. I view that fight as a exciting fight with scores anywhere from the 115-113 to 116-112 in Mikey favor. I due think he will fight both soon. Maybe he comes down to 135 for Linares unification and then maybe Easter moves up, becomes mandatory for the IBF title at 140 and the fight happens then. I think after the 2 and a half years that he was gone he’s just trying to make the best decisions as far as his career goes. Either way I don’t see him as cherry picking. He fought a soft touch for his come back fight, then fought a undefeated wbc champion who may not have been a big name but has wins over Ricky Burns, Ivan Redkach, Petr Petrov who are solid fighters. Then he fights Adrien Broner. Before the broner fight everyone was split as to who would win. That if AB was focused and on his A game then there was no way Mikey would win. He makes the weight and his team say he’s in the best shape ever and he’s mentally focused for the fight. And I do believe he was. Mikey still dominated him. I scored that fight like 10 rounds to 2. They say AB didn’t let his hands go enough but I believe that was due to the opponent. There was a round Mikey came forward hands down. There was a round where Mikey was punching at Adriens gloves in order to keep him gun shy. And now for the Lipinets fight. I think Mikey gets him out of there in 10 in a very exciting fight. At least that’s what I’m wishing for since I’ll be attending that fight! Anyway give me your thoughts on the cherry picking accusations made by the fans online. Notice I didn’t mention Lomachenko. Reason being is I doubt Top Rank wants anything to do with Garcia.
Sorry so long
-Pedro from Texas
Bread’s Response: I think Mikey Garcia is a good businessman and tremendous fighter. He knows he can command a high dollar and he wants the biggest money fights for himself. I agree that he would have to give Linares or Easter a larger % of the purse if he were to fight either so he chose Lipinets who can’t command the same % of the license fee. Mikey is a smart dude. We can’t say for sure if it’s a duck yet….Let’s see what Garcia does if he wins the Lipinets fight. By the way I think he beats Lipinets. Let's see if he goes back down to 135 and clears house.
I think Mikey Garcia wants to remain undefeated and also be financially secure. I don’t think he cares if certain fights are viewed as ducks. He’s almost 40-0. This line of thinking works best in this era. If other big fights are offered after the Lipinets fight he will weigh his options. Let’s see the landscape. Easter and Linares are both real fights but you have to make Mikey Garcia the favorite over both.
Don’t be surprised if Mikey gets a PPV type of money fight at 147 vs Danny Garcia. DSG used to be a 140 pounder so the size difference would not be immense. They have the Puerto Rican vs Mexico built in Promotion. If you notice Danny Garcia is also fighting in Las Vegas for his next fight. This is just my observation and personal opinion. I think a Garcia vs Garcia fight is more lucrative than any fight Mikey has at 135lbs.
As far as Lomachenko is concerned I don’t see the fight happening anytime time soon. There are just too many other options for Mikey Garcia. Loma is with Top Rank. Loma is so dam good. He’s not at lightweight yet. At this point I just don’t see it happening.
Rigo has long been one of my favorite fighters even though he is often boring I really appreciated the sublime manner in which he fought. I use to feel bad for him for being a victim of being to good and not getting the press and fights he deserved.
I've since analyzed the situation more deeply since he tweeted that he would be as popular as Mayweather if he could speak English. Well I know that Rigo has been living in America for quite some time now even training at my old gym. While he was not lucky enough to win the genetic lottery as I was to be born in America he has had plenty of time to learn English and was too stubborn to do so. Even with the realization that it would improve his marketability he still refused.
This has become Rigo's mentality overtime and you see it in his boxing. With everyone from media to hard core fans to the casuals for years yelling at him to be more exciting in his fights he has always refused even with more than enough talent to do so. While I understand getting a man with over 400 fights of success to switch up his style is like getting an 85 year old grandpa to use email. He realized all of this and still refused to adapt and this is where he ended up. I no longer have as much sympathy for him although he is still one of my favorites.
This brings me to my next point. I trained with fighters for world title fights and one thing that I noticed is some of the antiquated technique that just don't die in boxing. Which was as puzzling to me 6 years ago as it is today. Watching guys go on 8 to 12 mile runs is insane. I understand working under an elevated heart rate for a prolonged period of time but it is developing slow twitch fibers in a sport where exchanges rarely last longer than 5 seconds. Also most boxers don't train cognitively and this is where Loma has the edge his team understands the importance of this. I've been hit plenty of times in the head over the years of fighting and I know it's slowed the mental process down firsthand.
I understand the if it's not broke don't fix it mentality but in boxing it's holding good fighters back from being great.
Bread’s Response: I agree you with 100%. Rigo is a stubborn fighter. Everything about him is stubborn and ego driven. He just happens to be one of the most talented men to ever step in a boxing ring. I think his god given talents have contributed to his stubbornness. He has always been good enough to do things his way.
I feel the same way you do about Rigo. He has been screwed over in many aspects of boxing. But he has also screwed himself over. People love to say Roy Jones never evolved and he didn’t have technical ability. I’ve always disagreed with that because Roy’s success was because of his unconventional approach. More hooks than jabs. Etc Etc.
In Rigo’s case he’s a technical fighter. But his mentality was always wait on the back foot. Frame with the lead hand. Then score or threaten with the left hand. No one was ever able to solve the riddle because although it sounds simple, it was easy to say but hard to overcome. So now he runs into Lomachenko. Who has evolved as a fighter in each fight. Loma actually had more productive footwork than Rigo. Because Loma is not stubborn and didn’t rest on his laurels. It kills me to say this but Rigo did rest on his laurels.
I have a feeling history won’t be kind to Rigo. I hope I’m wrong. I still say he was one of the best fighters in boxing over the last decade. But his stubbornness, bad business moves and the system
Deontay Wilder is an athletic wrecking ball with wingspan. Commentators say his punches get too wild and he spends too much time off balance. What does your technical eye see?
Bread’s Response: Wild and too wild are different things. I think Wilder is wild but no one has proven him too wild yet. I think his frenetic whipping punches make him dangerous. Certain fighters you don’t want to confine in a box. It limits them. Wilder gets some serious leverage behind those whipping shots. I think he’s a historically good puncher.
That being said I do think he’s vulnerable defensively in exchanges. He never brings his hands back after he gets off. Some fighters have the reflexes to do that. Even those fighters eventually get clipped. I don’t nitpick fighters because I understand everyone’s success does not lie in the 123 ABC’s. Roy Jones and Naseem Hamed’s didn’t. But they did it vs a higher level of fighters. I’m curious to see what happens with Wilder when an opponent does not shell up in defense after Wilder starts getting off. The fighter who follows Wilder’s punches back and punches with him will show us where Wilder is.
It's been a while since I've mailed, nothing worth asking until now.
I'm educating my buddy on what fighters and fights to watch, he's getting there.
He asked me recently, is there any of the best fighters ever that aren't black? Typically Duran is the only guy who isn't black in most people's top tens.
So the question is, who are your top ten non black fighters of all time? Maybe mention an obscure classic fight for each fighter you'd recommend watching, footage permitting. Also, can you name your two favorite, that might not be top ten.
My guess at what your ten will be:
- I hold my hands up, that's all I got without researching guys I haven't heard of.
Much love brother, you're the man!
Bread’s Response: Good question I have never been asked who is the best 10 fighters ever who were non black. People always shy away from racial questions but this question is legit and respectful. So many things in boxing positive and negative and most of all realistically are racially influenced.
Ok this is not in a 1-10 order but this is who I came up with.
Harry Greb- There is no clear footage of him which keeps him from being a stronger candidate for the best fighter ever. But his resume is mind boggling and I did see some of the fighters he defeated. Whoo
Roberto Duran- Watch Hector Thompson fight.
Willie Pep-_ Watch the 2nd Sandy Saddler fight.
Benny Leonard- There are some nice tributes on youtube and he also has a fight with Lew Tendler
Tony Caonzoneri- Watch the Jackie Berg fight.
Rocky Marciano-Watch the 1st Ezzard Charles fight.
Carlos Monzon- Watch the 1st Nino Benvinuti fight
Julio Cesar Chavez- Watch the Edwin Rosario Fight.
Eder Jofre- There are some nice tributes to Jofre on youtube. His fights with Jose Medal are also pretty good.
Salvador Sanchez-Watch the Wilfredo Gomez fight
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