By Stephen "Breadman" Edwards
The Daily Bread Mailbag returns with Stephen 'Breadman' Edwards discussing Keith Thurman vs. Danny Garcia, Gennady Golovkin vs. Daniel Jacobs, the rise in PED testing, David Lemieux's knockout of Curtis Stevens, and more.
I hope Keith and Danny have a rematch. I think Danny might win a rematch if he can land his left hook . I really don't remember him throwing it much at all. Keith has really good footwork so maybe he worked on staying staying away from Danny's left. I guess it would matter a lot if Garcia can figure out a way to get in position to throw it more. What do you think ?
Bread’s Response: It’s not out of the question that Danny can win a rematch. It’s bizarre to me that experts think he can’t. Those same experts said Leo Santa Cruz could not beat Carl Frampton in a rematch…..
Danny has the IQ, calmness and timing to defeat Thurman on the right night. Danny and Leo are similar level fighters and Keith and Frampton are similar level fighters. I’m not saying Danny should be the favorite but he’s not over his head in the rematch.
I think it’s more than landing the left hook. Danny has to figure out how to dictate the mood and rhythm of the fight. The punches that he needs to land will land organically as the fight plays out. Keith stayed a step ahead of Danny most of the night. That is Danny’s dilemma. Leading or tracking, initiate or counter. Because Danny lacks foot speed and he doesn’t utilize a jab as much as he should that becomes a dilemma for him vs certain styles. But I think he can pull it off. I saw a close, competitive fight. Not a total style domination. Just like in Frampton vs Santa Cruz 1.
I recently seen that you wrote that If Floyd is a top 10 then Manny would be 15. Seems like people forget that Manny is an 8 weight division champion. From flyweight to super welterweight, 5 lineal championships and he even skipped 2 weight divisions. What about the competition that Manny has faced in the 126-30 divisions. Fighting Marco 2x Morales 3x Marquez 2x but twice at welterweight. Those guys were at or around their prime and could one day be future hall of famers. He fought once at lightweight and once at super welterweight. The rest of his fights were at welterweight where I felt he didn't belong but successful. Doesn't he get major credit in competing at welterweight to surpass Floyd or other great fighters?
Bread’s Response: I give Manny full credit for his resume. If you fight 20 years people will find a miss or two. But Manny was fighting killers time and time again. He even did it as an underdog in the early part of his career. Which is something that most fighters in this era would not do. Manny is the only fighters in history to be the underdog in his first 3 title tries and win. Think about that. His flyweight, junior feather weight and featherweight titles were all fights that he was the underdog and he was a pup at the time.
And yes you brought up he skipped 115 and 118. My goodness that’s his greatest stat. He could be conceivably be a 10 division champion which would make him the most decorated boxer athlete ever. And he’s already the most decorated boxer ever. Wow.
I think Manny gets the credit he deserves. He’s among the best fighters ever. I think he’s top 25 ever off the top of my head. Probably higher. Where do you want him to be ranked?
You are usually right on with your facts but "Duran is rated over Hearns because he is 7 years older and he’s looked at as a much smaller fighter. Duran also outperformed Hearns vs Hagler, Leonard and Barkley. None of those guys stopped Duran except for Leonard in the No Mas fight and they all stopped Hearns."
Actually Tommy Hearns was the first to knock Duran out (June 15th 1984 Caesars Palace - I know I was there) as Leonard really forced him to quit. Roberto he had 4 losses by TKO/knockout as did Thomas Hearns.
Very much looking forward to the GGG-Jacobs fight, will be there at ringside. Jacobs will be game for 3-4 rounds by round 6 Gennady takes him out, IMO!
That said, I enjoy your column.
Bread’s Response: I’m not arguing that Hearns soundly beat Duran. The statement was why is Duran rated over Hearns historically when Hearns beat him soundly. But Pacquiao is not rated over Mayweather who beat him.
I explained that Duran is smaller and older than Hearns. And he also outperformed him vs Barkley, Leonard and Hagler. I don’t get your argument. But hopefully I explained my comment and the comment of the fan who wrote in.
Just read your MB, good insight.
What also hurts Jacobs is his defense, because he's very offense minded.
His defense is going to have to be very sharp and he's going to have to plant himself in the middle of the ring and out box GGG.
GGG will employ a high guard to defend Jacobs head punching especially the right hand.
Jacobs is not known as a body puncher so GGG will sacrifice the body to defend his head.
Jacobs going to the body successfully will force GGG to drop that high guard but Jacobs will have to be defensively responsible because all finished fighters counter body shots with head shots.
Jacobs will have maintain his poise too under fire.
In the end Jacobs has a chance but his experience is more limited than GGG's who hasn't fought a litany of A fighters but he has fought various experienced guys with varying styles, so GGG is very seasoned.
GGG will stalk Jacobs and beat him into submission by the 7th or 8th round. I just hope Jacobs corner is smart enough to throw in the towel to spare Jacobs a significant beating.
Floyd's mitts routine with Roger is the best in the business because it offers offense, defense, trains reflexes and is much like a real fight. But that type of routine is not for everyone. Floyd works that routine over and over going 10 or 15 minutes continuously. For Floyd it is one of the main reasons why Floyd is as good as he is. If Floyd didn't do this mitt work you'd see a big difference in his Perfomance in the ring. But I do think he should work his fathers mitts routine too in training because it offers a different rhythm, a different mental synchronization. The mind needs variation to stay sharp.
Danny Garcia can definitely improve his tactics, that's where he lost the fight, tactically not skills wise. Angel said that Thurman was running, they knew that, and had a training camp to prepare for it. Thurman's in and out style hurt DSG too because he fights best when his feet are planted not moving. DSG also started late in that fight and was behind in the fight before he started to pick it up. If it had been a 15 round fight DSG would've gotten to Thurman hurting him badly getting the victory.
Bread’s Response: If Jacobs can effectively get to GGG’s body early then yes sir we have a fight. No one has ever been able to get to GGGs body consistently. Fighters like GGG are usually the bat and not the ball. GGG is not what you call a great counter puncher. He just calmly resets most times when he’s attacked. He’s not scared of contact or anything that’s just his way. Jacobs will be well served to go after his body.
Jacob’s defense will be 10% sharper than it ever was. He knows what he’s up against so it will force him to be alert.
Yes Floyd’s mitt routine is great for him. It sharpens his mind, style and enhances his cardio. Yes I have noticed Roger is the only one that does the mitts with him. His dad doesn’t.
I agree with you about Danny. There is a difference between lacking skills and lacking tactics. That’s why I give Danny a chance to win the rematch. A tactic can be worked on and corrected from fight to fight. It’s much harder to develop better skills from one fight to the next. Danny definitely knew Thurman was a mover. There are a few ways to deal with a mover. One is you can cut the ring off like Chavez did Camacho and beat him up. Two is you can move away from the mover and let him come to you like Hurtado did Whitaker it causes movers all types of trouble. Three is you can score early in the round on the mover, it causes them to want to get the points back then you can dictate to them how the fight plays out. Four is you can post up like Canelo did Cotto and counter punch. A man can’t run from you if you don’t chase him. Danny has to figure it out.
Who would you rate as the 5 most athletic boxers in the history of boxing? I have mine but I want you to list yours first.
Bread’s Response: Why didn’t you tell me your list, it’s not like I’m going to steal your answers. Ok off the top of my head. I wish I could have seen Charley Burley and Sam Langford in color HD because it does matter….
But off the top of my head in no order.. Sugar Ray Robinson. Although he’s not in HD his athleticism jumps out to me. His jump rope, and 6 left hook combos are still jaw dropping.
A young Muhammad Ali. The Ali of the 60’s athleticism is transcendent. It’s breathtaking.
Roy Jones. Only Robinson has been able to land the punches that Roy Jones has landed without setting them up with jabs. No one can score the kos Jones can score except Robinson.
Ray Leonard. Leonard was the most athletic fighter of the 80s and the 80s was boxing’s greatest decade. He had sick speed, reflexes and that shock ability with his punches. See the Davey Boy Green fight. Oh my gawd!
Guillermo Rigondeaux. Rigondeaux could be the most talented fighter I have ever seen. His feet looks as if they have risers in them. His reflexes could be the best in the history of boxing.
Honorable mentions 2nd team All World: Floyd Mayweather, Manny Pacquiao, Hector Camacho, Vasyl Lomachenko and Willie Pep.
What do you think is the biggest reason for this era of fighters across the board not being as good as those back in the day but yet they seem to last longer? It seems like fighters are more relevant for longer periods of time. But yet they aren’t as good if you watch the film.
Travis from the Lou
Bread’s Response: Good question I know what you’re trying to say…
A few of the reasons fighters aren’t reaching the peaks of fighters from the 90s on back are the same reason why they are lasting longer. Inactivity is one. If you fight less you will have less wear and tear on your body. Simple. The second reason is PEDs. Make no mistake about it. When you get to do PEDs it allows you to recover quicker, have better stamina, better durability and it makes you stronger and more explosive. You add this on to a fighter who is not averaging the same amount of fights per year as fighters did 20 years ago and you will have more longevity.
But here is the enigma. Being inactive stagnates your skill level. You don’t get better at something by not doing it. I have this conversation weekly with boxing scribes. The inactivity of this era is killing it, literally. It’s almost impossible to put together a HOF resume if you turned pro within the last 10 years because of the inactivity and avoidance climate.
If you don’t believe me look at some of the great HOF fighters from the 90s on back. Then look at their careers. Most were already HOF worthy after a decade of being a pro. De La Hoya, Mosely, Mayweather, Pacquiao, Jones, Holyfield, Tyson, Leonard, Duran, Chavez, Hearns I can go on and on. But if you look at some of the better fighters who have turned pro since 2007 which can you say is “already” a HOF. That should tell you something.
I will go even further. Besides a contract dispute I see about 4 reasons why fighters are inactive. One is because they make too much money and they want to enjoy it. They don’t care about their legacy. They care about financial security. Boxing is a hustle to them and they are businessmen who can fight.
Two is they want to cycle on and off PEDs. They need time to do that.
Three is because of injury or bad beatings and they need time to heal.
Four is because if they can sit back and watch their threats eliminate each other, they feel why should they intervene. It’s clever but it doesn’t make you great. If you can fight one showcase fight/year and avoid serious challenges because the serious challenges are fighting each other……I don’t need to say the rest. Then when the fans and media catch on you, you jump and fight a tough fight after3 years of showcase fights. Well sometimes the fighter gets lucky and wins the “big” fight and he can remain relevant for a few more years and fight showcase fights. Or if loses it’s no big deal because his record will still be good because he will still go back to fighting showcase fights to build himself up again. If you are averaging 2 fights/yr you can keep that pretty record for many years. It’s mostly a delusion.
Wow what a KO by Lemiuex. I know you picked Lemiuex but you picked him late, were you shocked? I’m mainly emailing you because there is a coach in Philly named Greg Hacket who is giving John David Jackson hell as a trainer. What do you think of the criticism, is it fair or unwarranted. Was it Jackson’s fault that Stevens got knocked out. I think Jackson is getting what he deserves because he criticized Virgil Hunter then he went out and lost to him. Thoughts.
Bread’s Response: I don’t think anyone saw that brutal ko coming. They were trading some heavy leather. Stevens was right with him. Both have great hooks. But Lemiuex closed his off better and he was quicker on the draw. The one thing about Stevens that always bothered me was he’s always reactive instead of proactive. In the ending exchange Lemiuex was quicker because Stevens was up against the ropes reacting to what Lemiuex was doing. Boxing is a game of inches and milliseconds. Sidenote..I still can’t believe Lemiuex lost to Joachim Alcine a few years back. Alcine was way past his prime, older and much smaller. Lemiuex has improved drastically. It’s almost unreal when you think that he lost to Alcine in 2011.
Yes I know Greg Hackett. He’s a good young coach, one of the best around. He was also a tough competitor as a fighter. I don’t know what he said about JD Jackson so I can’t speak on it. I know Hackett though and he’s a great guy and should be one of the top coaches in the country in no time…..
Yes I do remember Jackson saying some things about Virgil Hunter. Everyone has their opinion on who is good and who is not. So a respectful subjective opinion is reasonable. But the thing I don’t get about boxing coaches is the need to put down the coach in the other corner. It’s pointless and counterproductive because if you lose to the coach then you’re belittling yourself. You don’t see that in baseball, basketball or football. Only in the sport we love. I never understood it. It hurts our sport as a whole in my opinion. But if a coach is criticizing Jackson I guess it comes with the territory because he did criticize Hunter. Personally I try to stay away from that stuff.
No I don’t think it was Jackson’s fault Stevens was kod. Stevens was the underdog for a reason. He was fighting a good fight. He looked sharp and strong. He was actually looking much better than he did in his last fight vs James De La Rosa where he really struggled. He had his moments. But those dudes were gun slinging man. Shit happens in shootouts. I wouldn’t blame the coach in this case. In the laws of competition there will be winners and losers. No coach will win all the time and no coach will lose all the time.
What do you think of the star fighters asking for VADA recently? GGG asked for it vs Danny Jacobs? Canelo asked for it vs Chavez and now Kell Brook is on social media calling out Errol Spence to take VADA. Will this be the new trend and is it good or bad?
Bread’s Response: I think it’s great. But it could be better. I would rather fighters be tested all year around instead of just testing after a fight is announced because if they are using it gives them time to clear their system.
I also think only the A side fighters have the power to do this and that distorts the playing field. So while it’s a good thing it’s not all the way fair. Here is why. The A side fighter can cherry pick the testing. He can ask for VADA against certain opponents. And he can NOT ask for it when he wants to use against other opponents.
Pay close attention to the A side fighters who can ask for VADA and do not. Hmmm……….And I’m not talking about signing up for the Clean Testing Pool. Anyone in the rankings can do that. I’m talking about paying for random VADA testing for a big fight. There is a slew of 7 figure and high 6 figure fighters who simply NEVER ask when they have the power to do so.
It’s not always what you do. Sometimes guilt is in what you don’t do.
I really feel Curtis Stevens should have used a jab and stayed away from Lemiuex’s hook. You could see the ko coming a mile away. Stevens is faster than Lemiuex and his jab is better. He probably cost himself his career with a poor gameplan. What do you think?
Bread’s Response: I think social media has given birth to a new species. The Sunday Morning Trainer. The SMT has never lost a fight, a round and an opponent has never landed a punch on their fighter. The SMT is even more annoying than the Monday Morning QB. Because the SMT does not voice his opinion until the course of events take place. Then after the events take place he puts together a gameplan according to those events and the actual outcome. Therefore he can never lose. Then after it’s all said and done he questions everything the losing coach and fighter did.
Stevens got caught by a brutal shot. He was actually doing better attacking and staying close to Lemiuex. Just relax buddy you have no idea what you were looking at.
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