Join Date: Apr 2009
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Dan Rafaels New Blog: "There's Only One Ricky Flattened"
• How about these new lyrics to the Ricky Hatton song? "There's only one Ricky Flattened!" If he decides to continue fighting -- which you know he will -- who wants to bet he'll drop trainer Floyd Mayweather Sr. faster than Mayweather can order lunch at the Taco Bell drive-thru? (If you don't get it, you missed the terrific "24/7" on HBO.)
By the way, how utterly stupid does Mayweather Sr. look now after all the smack he talked about Manny Pacquiao trainer Freddie Roach? And how genius does Roach look after predicting the outcome exactly? (He said Pacquiao by knockout inside three rounds, and Pacquiao starched Hatton in the second round.) By most accounts, the Mayweather-Hatton union was a disaster during training camp, even though they did a pretty good job of keeping it quiet until just a few days before the fight. Hatton and the others in the camp didn't exactly treat Mayweather well, but Mayweather didn't show much class, either. He spent most of the promotion telling everyone he was the greatest trainer in the world while disrespecting Roach by calling him "Freddie 'The Joke Coach' Roach." After Mayweather's man got destroyed, guess he's the real joke of a coach, huh?
• For a change, Hatton's British fans actually showed some class by not booing during the American national anthem. Except for their previous disrespect shown to the American anthem, Hatton's fans really are amazing. They travel halfway across the globe and energize an arena like no other fans on earth. They even make Hatton's weigh-ins special events with more electricity than many fights.
• How's this for shocking: David Diaz was more competitive against Pacquiao than Oscar De La Hoya or Hatton.
• So Floyd Mayweather Jr. announced he was coming out of retirement. I'm shocked.
• Speaking of Mayweather Jr., maybe I'm just cynical, but I have to believe he knew exactly what he was doing when he opened the door for promoter Don King to try to sign him. By bringing King into the mix, Mayweather gained significant leverage with Golden Boy and got himself a better deal. The fight with Juan Manuel Marquez is fine, but let's keep it real: Wouldn't it be nice if Mayweather actually fought a true, prime welterweight? While Mayweather is looking down the scale for his second consecutive opponent, Pacquiao has consistently looked up the scale for his.
• So just who is going to fight Shane Mosley, the apparent odd man out among the big welterweight fights being made -- even though he's the champ?
• I guess Mayweather Jr. and Zab Judah, one-time ring rivals, are buddies again. At Mayweather's insistence, Judah will fight on the undercard of his July 18 match with Marquez. Hanging out at strip clubs together in Las Vegas must be the key to their male bonding.
• The only one with less class than Mayweather Sr. is his brother Roger Mayweather, Floyd Jr.'s trainer. During the news conference to announce the Marquez fight, Roger stepped to the podium and spent most of his time trashing legendary trainer Angelo Dundee for no apparent reason rather than talk about his nephew's comeback fight. It was disgusting and uncalled for.
• Congrats to HBO, which won four sports Emmys for previous editions of "24/7" among its eight total trophies on April 27. HBO, which won one award for "De La Hoya/Pacquiao 24/7" and three for "Calzaghe/Jones 24/7," deserves to pick up another batch next year for "Pacquiao/Hatton 24/7," which was terrific. The fourth and final episode was excellent, but what was most impressive was that by delaying it until the day before the fight (previous final episodes had always run on the Thursday night before the fight), the producers got in footage and narration of the electrifying weigh-in from Friday afternoon, just a couple of hours before the final cut had to be delivered to the network. Nobody does it better than HBO. The network is planning another batch of episodes during the buildup to Mayweather-Marquez.
• While I was in Las Vegas for Pacquiao-Hatton, I ran into Genaro Hernandez, the former junior lightweight champ, at the weigh-in. When he was active, Hernandez was one of my favorite fighters. And having gotten to know him in the years since I started covering boxing, you won't meet a better guy. Last fall, Hernandez was diagnosed with rhabdomyosarcoma, a rare kind of soft tissue cancer. He had been very sick and his weight had dropped to 120 pounds, 10 less than he had fought at as a champion a decade ago. But the good news is that Hernandez has been told by his doctor that his treatment worked and the cancer is gone. Even though "Chicanito" still looked a bit frail and his hair hasn't grown back yet, he said he was feeling OK. He had a big smile on his face, which was great to see.
• Anyone think Jermain Taylor has gotten a good night's sleep in the past two weeks?
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