The Daily Bread Mailbag returns with Stephen "Breadman" Edwards tackling topics such as Andy Ruiz's rematch loss to Anthony Joshua, Terence Crawford as the top pound-for-pound boxer in the world, the Jermell Charlo vs. Tony Harrison rematch, and more.
What’s good Bro Bread. I’m super disappointed in A Ruiz. I don’t know if I am more disappointed in his performance, coming in so heavy, or the excuses made about poor preparation after the fight. I guess I’m going to go with all three. Hats off to AJ but I swear as the fight was going on, I told a guy at the bar that AJ was fighting like Klitschko so to find out afterwards Klitschko was in camp with him made a lot of since. I know they claim AJ is back, but he looked skittish, just like Klitschko.
I know I might get some blow back from this, but I think Klitschko was able to reign so long because of the lack of size in the division. He was sort of towering over most opponents which allowed him to get off his shots and smother their returning fire. That is what AJ did most of the fight. He moved and smothered Ruiz. Ruiz sort of accepted the clinches most of the fight. I was screaming for him to throw punches when AJ tried to clinch and finally in maybe the 9th round he started trying to throw punches.
When you see Andy let himself go like that it just lets us appreciate guys like Floyd and Wilder. I think AJ fell into the silk sheets status before his last fight with Ruiz which is a large part of why the outcome was what it was.
How does a fight with Wilder and Whyte play out? I really thing Wilder washes him in a round or two. Whyte leaves himself open for the right hand. I really wish Wilder would take the fight for two reason. I’m tired of Whyte saying Wilder’s name and it takes away an opponent from AJ. AJ will not come back to the states now. They will definitely try to handcuff the belts over in the UK.
The last mailbag you answered a question about good bad boxer and bad good boxer. I just wanted to add that I would bet that the bad good boxer was probably not very athletic. I have a theory that the best boxers are all around good athletes meaning they are also good at multiple. There is an instinct that most good athletes have that a guy who has just learned how to throw the punches will never have. The bad good boxer will always know how to throw every punch, but the good athlete knows when to throw that punch.
A big part of boxing is mental so the right match making goes a long way but can you give me the names that come to mind that because of match making they looked like the goods until they were actually matched with a certain style or a 50/50 opponent. The one person that comes to mind as I type this is Jeff Lacy.
Lastly, they really must find quality opponent for Jermall Charlo. I get the sense that he loses focus when he is not faced with quality opposition. I know he won by KO the other day but his last couple of fights I find myself saying no way he should have beat Jrock and I think it is because he may fight down to competition. He has lost a lot of luster and I hate to criticize PBC but they have to do better or he might finally jump ship.
Bread’s Response: I feel bad for Andy in a weird way. The reason being is I don’t think he had the foresight to understand what he was doing. A boxer is only as smart as the person he LISTENS to. It’s obvious that Andy doesn’t listen. I know he has smart people around him but he doesn’t listen. I am 100% that his handlers wanted him in the GYM earlier than he decided to come.
Fighters often times are not the people we read through common logic. Some get offended by that but it’s the truth. It’s not always their fault. One of the reasons is they don’t need formal education in order to be fighters. Another is boxing is not a controlled entity. So therefore fighters come into boxing uneducated and the vultures destroy them. The same thing that makes them good fighters don’t allow them to structure their training, diet and business outside of the ring.
I kept hearing that Andy Ruiz didn’t train but I also heard that Anthony Joshua was getting kod in sparring. People in boxing make up rumors constantly. But a couple of days before the fight I heard from a reputable source that Andy started camp 3 months late. I went out and bet on Joshua.
I have seen this many times. In the 1980s Greg Page, Tony Tubbs and Tim Witherspoon could not get into shape consistently. Buster Douglas and Riddick Bowe in the 90s. James Toney went from middleweight to heavyweight not because of a growth spurt. Every single time I see this I know a fighter will underachieve. No fighter ever totally overcomes this.
It’s more than just being lazy, it’s GLUTTONY. But whatever the case, no one cares. The public only cares about the result.
Fighters don’t realize that people invest in their success. They do this by attending fights. Purchasing fights. Arguing over who’s going to win. Betting on fights. Becoming fans. And when a fighter takes this for granted and literally does not prepare, it’s almost as bad as QUITTING. The fans and media feel like Ruiz quit on their beliefs.
In the history of boxing GLUTTONY’S record is the only one the can rival TIME. We all talk about how good Riddick Bowe was but we forget that he got really tore apart by Andrew Golota twice in a row. Bowe was only 28, which is a great age for a heavyweight.
We all talk down on the 80s heavyweights. The reason we do is because the belt kept getting won by career underachievers. Mike Tyson came along and he was a breath of fresh air.
Andy really shot himself in the foot. I’m not saying he can’t come back from this. I’m an optimist. But I am saying that the likelihood of him overcoming this is less than it was for AJ to come back and win his title. A good trainer and fighter will get into great shape, move against Andy and force him to have a high energy level in order to win. Andy can punch but he’s not a ONE punch ko artist.
Ruiz will need a good support group. I suspect depression. Self doubt. Tough matchmaking. And lots of stress will surface. In this world of social media, his journey will be cruel. Personally I wish the kid the best, I don’t find joy in what’s going to happen to Andy. I wish he realized it before he decided to NOT train for the most glorious prize in all of sports.
Klitschko reigned because there was a weak era of heavyweights during his reign and he has tremendous pedigree, dedication and skills. The heavyweight Gold Medalist usually does throughout history. It wasn’t just size, although he was bigger than most of his opponents, it was their skill level. He really had no standout opponents that were closer than 3 to 1 underdogs to beat him. If you look close you notice his reign started after Lennox Lewis retired and it ended with the emergence of Fury, Joshua and Wilder. There is a reason for that. No disrespect to Klitshcko, he’s a great fighter and he had to win the fights and show dedication and longevity. He just didn’t reign over a great era.
Wilder vs Whyte is a blow out in my opinion. I agree with you. Wilder by spectacular ko. Anything can happen with heavyweights. But barring anything happening, my eyes tell Wilder concusses Whyte rather early.
We disagree on the bad good boxer. I think it’s a matter of boxing IQ. Often times people get offended when a fighter gets labeled for not having high IQ. But the Bad Good Boxer, simply looks the part but they do the wrong move at the wrong time. Their instincts as far as decision making is OFF. It’s really simple. They look the part but at the elite level they don’t get the results we expect.
I think Jermall Charlo is an interesting case. I think he has spots where he looks like the Terminator. Then he has spots where he misses big punches and gets hit too often. At 29 with 30 fights, I think that’s just him. He’s an excellent fighter and he’s on the verge of entering the top 10 P4P. If he can put together a BIG win vs an elite opponent.
The thing about Charlo you have to realize is he’s better than he looks. He has a high IQ. But because he’s a puncher and he gets hit, he doesn’t get credit for it. But just ask yourself does he do the right move at the right time. He does. He also has a big punch, lots of determination and a solid chin. He’s formidable.
On the flip side, Charlo is receiving lots of flack for his recent competition. His middleweight reign has been very slow. I don’t think it’s all his fault but nevertheless it’s not been very good. He also struggled bad with Matt Korobov, in a fight where it’s 50/50 on whether he lost. I don’t think he fights down to his competition, I think he raised his game for Jrock. He was zoned out for that fight and he hasn’t looked that way before or since. But Jrock brought the best out of Jermall.
It’s ironic you bring up Jrock in referencing Jermall, because it’s clear that Jermall’s performances and opponents have dropped off to a point where they are promoting Jermall by using Jrock. They fought 3 years ago and they made a whole segment on the uppercut he caught Jrock with. They waited 3 years because it now gives the win more credibility. I have seen some big shots get landed in boxing. But I’ve never seen a segment done 3 years after….
I agree Jermall Charlo needs some big fights. We already know he’s very good. But if you sit around too long and don’t challenge yourself you become stale. He’s in his prime and he deserves the top guys. I can see the angle of Charlo vs Eubank Jr but I don’t believe Eubank is on his level. I like Jermall big in that fight. Eubank has heart, an engine and a chin but Jermall is too skilled and his IQ is too high. Charlo also has Ronnie Shields and you can’t underrate their connection.
The challenges for Jermall is whoever unifies at 154 and moves up, Canelo or Andrade at 160. And Plant and Benavidez at 168. Those will be his legacy defining fights. The reasonable fight to make right now is Charlo vs Andrade. Two undefeated fighters, same division in a unification. Bad Blood. Charlo from a hot Southern city in Houston. Andrade from an underrated Northern city in Providence. The odds will be even. That’s a huge fight and I think it can do a solid PPV of 300k buys. Let me shut up before the promoters steal my ideas and not give me a check off of it.
A couple weeks early on this but this is the fight to look forward to going into this end of year push. Tony Harrison throws everything straight, jabs, straights rinse and repeat full extension and balance behind all of his punches. Not really a high output but everything counts, his hands are always in position to throw the straight shots and in return he sees the straight shots coming back. As a result he rarely gets hit straight up middle despite being in an offensive posture.
Against Jarret Hurd he got caught with a looping right hand from around the sides and I think Charlo buzzed him late in the 1st fight with something similar. In a boxing match at arms length in center ring I think Detroit Tony Harrison has the edge and Charlo’s anger works against him. Jermell Charlo fights angry and not necessarily aggressive the way Errol Spence or a Margarito carry a fast pace but still rack up damage in the meantime. No city bias on this one, it’s still a 50-50 rematch, what’s your take on this one sir? I’m sure you and your team got close eyes on this one.
Peace and blessings for the Holidays.
Jack from Detroit.
Bread’s Response: Good breakdown. I also feel as though Harrison vs Charlo is a 50/50 rematch. Harrison has more kos yet Charlo is viewed as the puncher in the fight. I feel as though the puncher in every fight is whoever can take the other’s punches better. While Harrison has more kos and a better ko% it seems like Charlo is the puncher. Charlo has taken on that mentality of wanting to ko Harrison. He seems to be forcing that energy on the fight. I think he tries too hard for kos. Errol Spence his training mate and Jermall Charlo his twin brother. Both have less fights and more kos than him and I think it makes him press too hard.
But for a fighter who has only has 16 kos in 32 wins, he does score some nice knockouts. His demeanor suggest he’s a huge puncher. I think he’s a good athletic puncher.
I bring up Jermell’s power because it seems to be all he talks about. On the other hand Harrison used to be a guy who kos lots of his opponents but since he’s reached the top level he’s a stick and move fighter.
It’s an interesting contrast. Their records and temperament don’t indicate the style they will bring to the table. I think Tony is slightly gun shy because he has ran out of gas twice and was stopped in the 9th round. Tony knows he’s not invincible and he fights like it. Jermell is the tougher more physical man.
As I’m writing this I’m breaking the fight down impromptu. Tony is the better boxer. In a game of street slap box, he wins. But this is a real fight. Jermell is stronger and he’s a more FIT athlete. I question can Tony win a rematch with his low punch output. I question can Jermell fight MAD and win if he doesn’t score an early ko. Tony controlled Jermell with a jab in the first fight and by remaining calm.
At this moment I honestly don’t know who wins this. If Jermell doesn’t clip Tony I expect another controversial decision.
What’s interesting is despite Harrison winning the first fight and being the champion he seems to be the B side in the promotion. Here is why I say this. The fight is in Southern California. Charlo lives in California, I’ve heard him call LA his second home. I felt like New York judges can appreciate the slick inner city boxing style. California judges like the more aggressive fighter. I don’t know who the judges will be but I don’t think Harrison will be able to get away with his conservative approach in the LA area with their crowd. I think Tony will have to try harder to get the same result. The question is can his chin and stamina hold up. If you watch the countdown segment it seems to feature Charlo more. At the end of the day the two fighters have to execute in the ring. But these are just my observations thus far. This is a really hard fight to call.
Bread you have Terence Crawford #1 in your P4P list but you have to admit his opposition has been lackluster. He’s been moving down the P4P list as of recently. How do you think he fares this weekend and what do you think he has to do to be the consensus #1?
Bread’s Response: I’m glad you wrote in about Crawford because this is the first email I got about him this week for his upcoming fight. I think Crawford tears the Mean Machine apart. Crawford is just too good for him. If he doesn’t stop him he wins every round. Crawford has a computer in his Boxing Brain. He simply knows what to do and when to do it. Once he computes you it’s over. I suspect he’s pissed off at his recent criticism and he’s going to make Mean Machine pay.
I don’t know what Crawford has to do to get BIG fights. But I do know what the promoters have to do. They have to compromise. If Top Rank wants Crawford to fight a PBC star on ESPN, they are going to have to come up with ridiculous money. It’s just that simple. PBC has the edge because they have the fighters. People suggest Crawford leave Top Rank. That could be a solution but who’s to say he will get the fights if he leaves. Errol Spence was ducked for years and he was with PBC. So….
It’s really tough to say if you don’t know what’s going on behind the scenes. But again it’s on the promoters. Specifically Crawford’s promoter. They have to get him the BIG fights. They have to create opponents. They can also petition to make Crawford the mandatory for the WBC, WBA and IBF titles. I don’t understand why that doesn’t happen more often. Force the fights by LAW. If a fighter vacates then….
Crawford just has to be patient. The storms are coming. All of the champions are with PBC but there is more WORK out there.
Vergil Ortiz is coming like a freight train. Jaron Ennis is coming like a freight train. There are two undefeated unified champions at 140 in Jose Ramirez and Josh Taylor who have frames of welterweights. Let’s see how it plays out.
I have Crawford my 1a P4P. I have Loma 1b and Inoue 1c. Honestly the spots are interchangeable. Crawford doesn’t have a great resume but it’s not horrible either. It’s not a smoke and mirrors 3 division titles like some fighters we have seen. He was the RING champion at 135. And he won all of the belts at 140. So while he hasn’t faced any great fighters or P4P top 20. He has faced the best available and viable fighter. He doesn’t have HUGE misses.
On paper Gamboa is his best win. But his best wins are really Postol, Diaz, Benavidez and then Gamboa. Postol can really fight. Benavidez gave Crawford issues early. Diaz was a Gold Medalist and was robbed vs Lamont Peterson. And Gamboa was also an elite talent, he was just too small and chinny. Crawford’s resume is about a C.
But his eye ball test, consistency, his domination and the projection of who can beat who place him at #1 for me. Lot’s of elite fighters have struggled with or lost to fighters the caliber of Postol and Diaz. You have to give Crawford credit for showing his skill and dominating. When I see that Crawford is now ranked at #4 on some list I have to ask do you really think 3 fighters in the world are better than Crawford. I don’t.
Being better and having a better resume are different. Anthony Joshua has the best heavyweight resume. But I don’t believe he’s the best heavyweight fighter. I think we confuse the two.
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