The Daily Bread Mailbag returns with Stephen "Breadman" Edwards tackling topics such as weights in boxing, Chavez vs. Taylor, Mike Tyson vs. Razor Ruddock, George Foreman vs. Ernie Shavers, Josh Taylor's split from Shane McGuigan, and more.
Wanted to get your take on weightlifting in combination with boxing training. From what I’ve observed there seems to be two schools of thought on training with weights: The Old School and New School. Old School says “No Weights. AT. ALL. PERIOD.” The New School favors effective weightlifting in conjunction with other exercises like muscle endurance and cardio. What are your thoughts? Which school are part of? Or this there a third school where weightlifting is concerned?
Bread’s Response: I have seen it work both ways. I’ve seen fighters lift weights and it slows them down. I have seen fighters lift weights and it makes them stronger and faster. It depends on the genetics of the fighters and it depends on how they are lifting.
I believe in old school training. I also believe there are new innovative ways to do things that are better. The key to both is consistency. A plan that the fighter sticks to.
In this era it would be hard to convince a fighter to ZERO weights. The fighters are too big and coming down too far in weight. A fighter would have to be an athletic freak and incredibly strong to not do any type of weight training and be comfortable with it in this era.
You’ve spoken highly of George Foreman as a heavyweight in the past (his power and heart in particular). I’m curious... what do you think would have happened if he’d faced Earnie Shavers? Two of the strongest heavyweight punchers facing off? I would favor Foreman the longer the fight goes. What do you think?
Bread’s Response: I think Foreman wins that fight by 1st or 2nd round ko.
I was working the fight as security..I was in The Duva corner..Taylor was out landing Chavez 3/4 to one ( do a punch count)
A was a brutal display of Philadelphia vs Mexico
Around round 9 my boss mumbled out loud " oh lord if Chavez loses this thing ..there is going to be a riot...I asked are you serious?
He said yes!..He said not even Don King could save this for Chavez...so get ready
In the 12th Taylor fell feet away from me..
Duva got up on the apron yelling 10 seconds 10 seconds round almost over..
Taylor heard the yelling of the familiar voice and nodded ok ..he then looked at Steele and Steele stopped the fight
Steele heard every word from Duva..10 seconds 10 seconds..I saw the red light flashing as did steele!!!
I knew Chavez had no time to get all the way across the ring to touch Taylor
I was cheering for the American...my boss looked scared..
When Steele waved off the fight my boss let out a big happy sigh..
I was shocked and angry..I said can you believe that?
I was new to Vegas...my boss gave me a look that now I recognize as Gee wise up kid...Chavez is a Don King fighter dahhh
To this day I have never watched that fight ever again..
After reading your article I will again
Bread’s Response: I’m glad you wrote in Chad. You give a rare perspective. People have sent me hate mail because of my feelings on this fight. But I know what I know. The claim that Steele makes that the amount of time left didn’t matter is ridiculous because the last round is the only round you can be saved by the bell in Nevada. So to disregard time, is disregarding the rules.
I brought up the Tyson vs Ruddock I fight before, because Tyson and Chavez were both A side Don King fighters. And Steele was the referee in both fights. If you watch Tyson vs Ruddock I, you know there is no way that fight should have been stopped when it was. Ruddock was buzzed but he was showing resilience and he was coming on in the previous round and exchanges. I was rooting for Tyson to win that fight and I knew that wasn’t a fair stoppage. Correlating both events there is too much circumstantial evidence of preferential treatment to ignore it.
Long time reader, first time writer
First off, sorry to see how things went for J Rock last weekend. Sure you'll be back better than ever.
I wanted to ask about Shane McGuigan and the fallout between him and Josh Taylor given Taylor's move from Cyclone to Top Rank
I'm not going to claim to know how Cyclone do business or what the promotional relationship between Taylor and Cyclone was like, however he is not the first fighter to be unhappy with his promotional relationship with the company.
This seems to put Shane in an awkward position, as he is clearly one of the best trainers in the sport but his close relationship with his father seem to have caused a rift between him and Taylor, a fighter that he has done a great job training.
Should Shane be accepting of fighters he trains wanting to leave his fathers promotional company or am I being harsh on him?
Thanks for taking the time to read and (hopefully) respond. Whatever J Rock and yourselves do going forward, I'll be rooting for you
Euan, Dunfermline, Scotland
Bread’s Response: I think Shane McGuigan is an awesome coach. One of the best in the world. The job he did with Carl Frampton in the 1st Leo Santa Cruz fight was excellent.
As you know I’ve always been high on Scott Taylor. I think he’s one of the best fighters in the world. I have no idea why or what caused the split with McGuigan or Cyclone Promotions.
You’re asking me should Shane be accepting of fighters he trains leaving his dad. My goodness that’s a tough spot to be in. Obviously the fighters are just separating themselves totally which is probably easier to do. I don’t have an answer for that.
Personally when I separate myself from someone I usually separate from the people that they are close too that we have in common. There are always exceptions but usually that’s the case. Great question and I really don’t have an answer. The one thing I will say is that Shane may want to start consider to train boxers who are not associated to his father’s company. So if there is a split it doesn’t compromise him whatsoever.
First of all marry Christmas to you and your family, longtime reader here since the boxingtalk day. About 2-3 weeks ago on one of your mailbags you replied to someone about you made a list of fighters who had a chance to be regarded better than Ray Robinson if they would have turned right instead of left and Chavez made the list, my question is what could have Chavez done? About if Chavez when he moved up to welterweight instead of going against Whitaker would have went up against a young undefeated Felix Trinidad? Do you think Chavez could have beating Trinidad and winning that 4 title in a different weight class would have put his legacy? That would have been a huge fight the younger bigger lion against the old lion, Mexico vs Puerto Rico. How would the career of Trinidad would have been if let’s say he takes a beating like Taylor? And Chavez beating Trinidad then getting comfortable at the weight and if he would have beat Whitaker no question Chavez would had a serious debate as the best ever. Please let me know your thoughts on this. Who wins these mythical fights
De La Hoya vs Tszyu at 140, 1996
Rafael Márquez 2003 vs Inoue
Virgil Ortiz now vs Fernando Vargas at 21 (Virgil style remains me just exactly Fernando)
Shane Mosley vs Crawford at 135-147 you pick
Julio César Chávez vs Manny Pacquiao at 140
Bread’s Response: I think if Chavez moved up and simply beat Whitaker and retired shortly after he’s in the conversation of the GOAT. He’s closer to 100-0 than anyone on the list at that point. He would have had a great resume through 4 divisions.
But he didn’t beat Whitaker. And after Whitaker we saw him too vulnerable. Just think if he Chavez beats the great Pernell Whitaker and maybe goes on an easy fight tour to 90-0 and walks away. He was 87-0 when he fought Whitaker. I think Tito would have been too big for Chavez. Whitaker was a better fight physically because he was also an ex lightweight and he was only 5’5.
Nevertheless Chavez was a great fighter. One of the best I’ve ever seen.
I liked Oscar over Tszyu and always have. Oscar of 96 was a monster.
I can’t call Inoue vs Marquez just yet. Marquez is better than people realize head to head at bantamweight.
Vergil Ortiz has not even had a title fight yet. It’s too hard to compare him to Fernando Vargas. Too soon.
Mosley vs Crawford is a great fight. Um…. I’m going to say Crawford in a war. But honestly I don’t know.
Chavez vs Manny would have to fight a few times to decide it.
Wanted to get your thoughts on “quitting”, Breadman. The word is a dirty word and the act an unforgivable sin in boxing. Doesn’t some of that border on ridiculous? Don’t me wrong, some quitting is inexcusable: Nicholas Walters or Rigondeaux quitting against Loma? Inexcusable. But some fighters have been labeled as quitters unfairly in my opinion. Going back to Loma for a moment, some people say he made Jason Sosa quit. I watched that fight as it happened. Sosa was showing heart, but he was taking some serious punishment, and his corner chose to protect him. In that case, from himself. He didn’t quit. That’s what happened in the Thrilla in Manila. Futch pulled Frazier out, yet no one labels Smokin’ Joe a quitter.
I also think there are different kinds of quitting. One example is a fighter who gets knocked down, who can get up but let’s themself get counted out. I can think of three fighters who have done that: Alexis Arguello in his rematch with Aaron Pryor, John Mugabi against Marvin Hagler, and Jack Johnson against Jess Willard. Technically quitting, but I don’t hold it against them. All three were being battered at the time they went down, and they just decided they couldn’t win. So instead of getting up to take more punishment, they let themselves get counted out. I guess you could technically fit Gvozdyk in this one too. Kellerman took some heat for saying Gvozdyk quit against Beterbiev. I was with Max on that one to an extent. I thought it was a poor choice of words, but I watched the replay and saw a guy fold under a mauling attack. Frankly, I was impressed Gvozdyk held out as long as he did. I would’ve caved MUCH sooner.
Now, we can’t have a discussion about quitting in boxing without bringing up the big one: No Mas. Duran quit, there is no question about that. For me, the question centers around the why. Was his pride hurt after that seventh round? Was it the serious weight cut after all his partying after the first fight? I’m sure both had something to do with it. I admit this one will probably always be an enigma.
What is your take on this one, Bread? I have a complicated relationship with boxing’s unforgivable sin. As a fan who puts high hopes in his favorite fighters, I don’t ever want to see them say “Screw this” and throw in the towel when they could easily rally at any given moment. At the same time, I’m friends with a professional boxer my uncle helps condition. I don’t want him to take unnecessary punishment when he could capitulate and go on to fight another day. The idea that fighter should sooner die than throw in the towel is just toxic, in my opinion. What do you think, Bread? What’s your thoughts or feelings towards boxing’s unforgivable sin?
Bread’s Response: The word QUIT is the dirtiest word in boxing. It actually carries more weight than CHEATER. Go figure.
I have never said QUITTING is QUITTING. Because it isn’t. When a fighter has had enough and the fight gets beat out of him and he capitulates, you can’t compare that to a guy who simply packs it in because things aren’t going his way. Or the guy who tries to be slick and gives the wrong answer purposely to the officials so the fight can get stopped.
So no Alexis Arguello is not a fighter I consider a quitter. Neither is Miguel Cotto. But far too many fighters get passes for “acting” like they want to fight but they are really trying to get out of the fight.
I don’t call fighters out and try to embarrass them. But I will give examples. I once watched a fighter go down from a borderline body shot. He laid on the ground and complained while the referee was counting. Instead of getting up. It was ridiculous. The blow wasn’t that low and the fighter acted like he didn’t know what the ref ruled. That’s a quitter.
I watched the same fighter tell a ref that he couldn’t see and started blinking really bad in the corner. As soon as the fight was called off he stopped blinking.
In another case I saw a fighter get up from a knockdown and wobble purposely. His coach told me that’s his way of quitting with dignity. I was disgusted.
As much as I love Roberto Duran that was a straight quit job. He could be the best fighter ever but he quit. I actually forgive him because it wasn’t out of fear. It wasn’t because he couldn’t beat Leonard. He already did. It was because of ignorance. He simply didn’t know the long lasting repercussions of his frustrations. But because Duran has done so much before and after No Mas he gets more of a pass than fighters who are forging their legacies.
In a black and white definition. I think it’s commendable for a fighter to capitulate when he’s had enough or his injured. But if the fight is just not going your way and/or you fake it just to bail out, that’s a coward at least for that night.
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