By Stephen "Breadman" Edwards
The Daily Bread Mailbag returns with Stephen "Breadman" Edwards hitting a number of topics, including Errol Spence vs. Kell Brook, Spence taking part in VADA testing, the Andre Ward vs. Sergey Kovalev rematch, the controversy with Kovalev's head trainer John David Jackson, and more.
What's up bread! Correct me if I'm wrong but I believe I read something in your mailbag about you were going to comment on the fans after this fight to see if they would give Kell Brook props for taking the fight with Errol Spence jr. What are your thought about fans that call out fighters for making making smart business decisions in their careers not always taking the tough fights and when fighters like Kell Brook give the boxing public what they want but come up short they talk bad about them. Why is this guy getting such criticism from boxing fans? Then you have situations like Gerald McClellan and Prichard colon I believe his name is, getting hurt in boxing and no one seems to be around to help them. It's hard to criticize a boxer as a fan when your not living the culture for yourself. Also considering Errol Spence's advantages against Kell Brook, example: the eye injury plus the wear and tear on Kelli body taking such a tough fight back to back and not being fresher and still performing the way he did how do you rate Errol Spencer's as a fighter? What type of career will he have and what fighter of the past do you think he's most like style wise? Keep up the great work on the mailbags!
Gabriel from Stockton ca
Bread’s Response: Kell Brook should be given credit for fighting Errol Spence. He could’ve moved up. Boxing fans as a whole are the worst fans of any sports. Yes I said that about the sport I love the most. Boxing fans win every argument because their stance changes with the result. They can’t lose. If a fighter makes smart business moves he’s a coward and cherry picker. If a fighter takes tough fights and if he doesn’t win them he’s a bum and can’t fight. I would advise any fighter to turn off their social media. Only go on to post and never read much. It will kill your spirit to read some of the harsh things that are written by idiots who are not accountable. Those idiots actually include 80% of the boxing media also because they have agendas also. And fighters shouldn’t interview with non credible media members.
I think Spence will have a tremendous career and one day be a top 10 p4p fighter. Spence to me is a hybrid fighter mixed with Shane Mosley and Michael Moorer the light heavyweight version. Spence is not as fast or twitchy as Mosely but he overwhelms in a similar fashion. He also has that hard southpaw downhill game that Moorer had at 175.
I know I didn't get this out on time for the mailbag, but I just wanted to comment on the fight. I see someone with a slick comment about how Spence stopped looking like superhuman with VADA testing and the same type of comments were being sent Golovkin's way after the Jacobs fight. First of all, I applaud these guys for taking VADA, and in Errol's case he also took USADA while Brook was taking UKADA on top of VADA. The reason they stop looking superhuman is because of the level of competition. Jacobs and Brook are quality fighters who are much superior than guys like Murray or Bundu or Wade or Algieri etc. You always talk about welterweights in today's game who are much smaller than in prior eras, but Brook is a complete throwback. He would be a good or big sized WW in ANY era. This is a guy who gives anyone problems with his size and boxing skills. Remember, even though Golovkin stopped him in the 5th round due to the corner stepping in, Brook was never close to going down aside from maybe the first round. He seems to have a rock solid chin. I see a lot of people thought Brook was dominating or having his way in the first six rounds but I didn't see that at all. I thought it was very competitive back and forth affair from two top level guys. For all the flashy shots Brook threw, Spence was matching them with his body work. Everyone it seemed like gave Brook the first round, but it was Spence's three or so body shots that were the best shots of the round. I was thinking of someone to compare him to, and he has some Hagler in him. Not quite as aggressive, but both use smart pressure to break you down and always try to come back when getting hit. I think for Spence to take the next step, he needs to use a bit more of head movement, and counter more off the back foot. That isn't his style, but he flashed some nice countering ability late in the fight. Just because he didn't look spectacular doesn't mean this wasn't a damn good win. I'm not putting it on the level of SRL vs Benitez, but remember Leonard didn't dominate that fight either but he was so impressive how he was matching the champion and then eventually stopping him.
I saw the odds you gave on Spence on future fights, but I slightly disagree. I felt Spence/Brook was 55/45 in favor of Spence and it played out that. Spence vs Thurman to me is 60/40 Spence, Spence vs Garcia is 75/25 Spence and believe it or not I'd say Spence vs Porter is like 57/43 Spence. I used weird numbers there to show it is not quite on the level of the Brook fight but slightly harder than the Thurman one. Champions usually improve after winning the title and I can't wait to see this guy progress. I think we are in for a damn good run with this kid going after the top dogs for the rest of his career.
Sorry for the wrong e-mail, but just wanted to get all my thoughts out.
Shawn from California
Bread’s Response: I’m glad Spence agreed to the testing. Some fighters don’t test at all. He tested and won a huge fight so he deserves props. Hopefully he decides to test for the remainder of his career. When a fighter picks and chooses who to test against and who not to test against, in my opinion it shows a lack of integrity. Spence was asked to test and go on the road. He took the test, went on the road and won the fight. In an obvious PED induced era. So far Spence's career defining performance was under VADA. That's a good for him and his legacy. I hope he keeps it up.
I don’t know if more head movement will help Spence’s defense. Here is the thing about head movement. When you aren’t used to moving your head it will fatigue you. It will also take you out of punching position. One of the reasons Spence does not move his head a lot is because he’s trying to stay in punching position without using too much energy. So if he starts moving his head all over the place it will take away from his walk down game.
I read your tweet that Brook was in trouble. It was in like round 2. How did you see it so early? I saw some guy try to play and say you picked Brook but everyone on the timeline knew you picked Spence. People are assholes. Again what did you see in Spence that let you know he was in control even when it looked like he wasn’t. Also I think Brook’s surrender was acceptable. Do you think it would have been acceptable if his eye was not injured and he just had, had enough?
Bread’s Response: I thought Brook was in trouble because Errol was carrying him too fast. It was like two guys racing around the track. They start at the same place. But one guy is in the outside lane and the other is in the inside lane. Well in this fight Errol was in the inside lane. The pace he fights at is the pace he trains at. So his heart rate is not confused. Brook couldn’t handle that pace.
I also saw Brook landing some nice shots upstairs but Spence was stabbing his body underneath. Brook doesn’t fight inside, he ties up inside. Watch Chavez Sr. vs Ruben Castillo , you will see what I mean. I couldn’t imagine a fight going 12 rounds at that mood and it be good for Brook. Spence was not in control early but I knew he would be later. Brook’s body language after the 6th gave Spence the fight. To see a man showing discomfort gives a fighter hope. Hope is priceless in a fight.
I think Brook’s surrender is what it is. I don’t consider him a quitter along the lines of some fighters we have seen. I won’t name names out of respect for the game. But I don’t think it was all the eye either. Brook was taking a terrible beating to the body. A man that has to rehydrate the way Brook does in order to feel comfortable in the ring will not take those brutal body shots all night long. I think it was an accumulation of fatigue, the eye and body punishment.
The eye injury was legit. And whenever a fighter has a legit injury capitulation is acceptable. If Brook’s eye was not injured, surrendering would be tougher to accept. People are giving him hell now and he had a real injury imagine the narrative if there was no injury……
What do you make of Kovalev’s trainer going to team Ward? Do you think he was a double agent? Do you think the claims are true? I remember you saying that Kovaelv doesn’t let Jackson talk to him in the corner. You talk about bad karma John David Jackson trashed Virgil Hunter because he wasn’t an ex fighter but Hunter commands more respect than Jackson does. What’s your official pick in this fight?
Bread’s Response: I don’t know what’s true and what’s not, but I will say that’s a heck of a claim. How it’s taken really depends on the level of trust the rest of the team has for Jackson. It’s that simple.
I actually feel bad for Jackson even if this is not true. You have to be careful when you say negative things about other people in order to lift yourself up. Jackson said some sly negative things about Hunter when Hunter was being respectable to Jackson. Now the tables have turned on Jackson. That’s a really tough spot to be in. This is a really stressful fight to be in. You need chemistry, respect and trust. And Jackson seems to be catching a lot of heat. He’s a good coach but I think he made a mistake attacking Hunter’s credibility as a coach. Now it seems like his role in Kovalev’s camp is being attacked. Jackson seems to be under a lot of pressure from all different angles.
My official pick is Ward. I’m not changing it now. I don’t know how but I have two scenarios. If Ward gets off to a blazing start I think he stops Kovalev late. If Kovalev fights smart early and gets his jab going I think Ward will have to be more patient and respectful hence he may lose some rounds early. Kovalev is probably a little sharper from long range. If Kovalev gets off to a good start I think Ward still wins but it just won’t be a dominant Chad Dawson type of performance. Not sure how it plays out but the safe bet is Ward by decision that’s his usual big fight result.
Just started reading your colum and really like it very informative, I just would to know what you think about Terence "Bud" Crawford, were should he goes now after the Diaz fight,..? Does he chase the Pacquaio fight, which i think he's chasing a dream, or does he chase the Indongo fight,,..? Just heard Mikey Garcia, moving up to fight Broner, @140, do you think Bud has a chance of getting that fight since Bud want to unify,..? Or do think he's ready for 147 division,...?
Bread’s Response: Terence Crawford has a legit argument for being the best fighter on planet earth. If everyone were naturally the same weight, height proportioned to their weights, who would you bet could beat Crawford. I really don’t know who….. Maybe Ward, maybe Lomachenko, maybe…. For arguments sake because p4p is also accomplishments lets say Crawford is top 5 or 6. He has excellent coaches, a good grass roots fan base and he still seems to be improving. I think very highly of Crawford as a fighter.
I think Crawford can go wherever he wants to go. I think he beats everyone at 140 and 147. However, I don’t believe he has to move up. He just got to 140. He has a right to unify and create a legacy there for himself. Fights will create themselves. It’s up to the promoters and fighters to establish themselves as threats to him. 147 won’t be easy to conquer but I think he can. But he shouldn’t be rushed. It’s not like he’s been at 140 for 10 title defenses and he’s beaten every threat.
I think he can get the winner of Broner vs Garcia. I’m not sure if he can fight Pacquiao. Aging icons can do whatever they want. Pacquiao can string Crawford along if he wants to. And Top Rank will have to break the bank in order to make that fight. Pacquiao will be the underdog and that’s a serious fight to take when you are almost 40. I favor Crawford but Pac is now a master boxer and he has the best scoring rear hand I have ever seen. Ever. 60/40 in Crawford’s favorite but unless the projected numbers are over 2 million buys I don’t think it happens. Crawford has to become a legitimate star in order for Pacquiao to make the guarantee he would want. Crawford needs a star making fight.
What is your take on all the drama going on in the Krusher Kovalev camp? I’ll admit to being a big fan of Krusher. I thought he cleanly won the first fight with Ward with his early work and the knock down. However, he clearly seems to be trending downward with his performances against Chilemba and Ward (though I’ll give Ward credit on that one rather than saying Krusher just looked bad). Now I read that his trainer tried to defect to the Ward camp just a few weeks before the rematch. Something seems seriously wrong behind the scenes.
Bread’s Response: I will tell you one of the more bizarre trends I have seen in picking the winner of this fight. The majority of people I know think Kovalev won the 1st fight. But the majority of those people are picking Ward in the rematch. The last time I saw that is when Mayweather fought Maidana in the rematch.
I don’t know if Kovaelv is trending downward but he’s had 2 decisions in a row and at no time in his career has that happened. Maybe it’s because he’s fighting very good defensive fighters. Maybe it’s because he’s going downward. I give the credit to Ward and Chilemba. They didn’t allow themselves to be kod.
It’s hard to tell what’s going on behind the scenes. But I will say that all of this confusion will test the loyalty of the members of Team Kovalev.
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