The Daily Bread Mailbag returns with Stephen "Breadman" Edwards tackling topics such as Floyd Mayweather vs. Logan Paul, glovegate in Tyson Fury vs. Deontay Wilder III, the Shakur Stevenson vs. Floyd Mayweather, reflecting on Adrien Broner, the career of Nonito Donaire and more.

Hey Bread,

I've enjoyed our boxing debates and discussions over the years.

I like the way you discussed the glovegate issue without venturing an opinion.

While not venturing my own opinion, I will say Fury was caught with suspect gloves in a fight in the UK and the referee made him go to his backup pair. The look on Fury's face was priceless. I'll find the link and send it to you. And, just like I don't think Margarito's loaded handwraps were a 1 time thing, the same can be said about Fury.

On to Mayweather, he slightly underestimated Logan Paul who's size bothered him along with limited preparation and the clinching by Paul. If there had been scoring Paul could've been penalized for all the holding, good strategy though. Paul wasn't going to outbox Floyd, he just wanted to go the 8 round distance.

Last but not least, Pacquiao/Spence, not counting Pacman out, Spence has an ironclad mindset. He believes in himself and very subtly pronounces that belief. I think Pacquiao is in the same spot as ODLH was when they faced each other. What I particularly don't like about boxing is when a guy is riding a wave many opponents won't face him until he loses, is "exposed" or something happens to him.

Pacquiao wasn't enthusiastic about fighting Spence when he called him out and into the ring after the Mikey Garcia fight, but after his car accident? They believe that Spence is a diminished fighter after the car crash, Justin Fortune S&C coach for Pacquiao said as much.

Bread’s Response: Hey Rob. I’m glad you can read. I received a few emails telling me a cosigned Wilder’s excuses. There are about 5 people who write in like yourself who I post more often than not, simply because you have common sense. They can’t read or hear anything that disrupts their altered thinking without coming up with an alternative meaning to something that was very simple. I never once said I believed Wilder. 

If you have the link to Fury’s other glove issues send it in. I’ve never heard of that before. I don’t want to compare Fury to Margarito. That wouldn’t be fair to him. Something illegal was actually found in Margarito’s knuckle pads. With Fury all we have is speculation at this point. 

You think Mayweather underestimated Paul…..I really don’t know. I sort of think Floyd knows himself at this point in his life. He picked Logan Paul for many reasons. The look. The level of fighter he is. The projection of what revenue the event would generate etc. I don’t know if he carried him. I suspect he wanted to KO him especially after his brother took his hat. Mayweather has a mean streak….

You know I see fighters “wait” on other fighters all the time. But I won’t give Pacquiao that case. He’s 42. He’s short, with short arms and he’s going to have to fight the fight of his life to win. I can’t even suggest this is a cherry pick. Or a wait out. Pacquiao is 12 years older than Spence. If they were close to the same age. And Pacman waited a few years to fight Spence, and during those years Spence took some Ls or performed less than, I would agree with you. But not in this case. I do think they saw something in Spence. I do think that Manny’s team THINKS that Crawford is better. But all teams have an OPTIMISTIC PERCEPTION on why they will win. No team goes into a fight saying, “we can’t win this”. Just because they think Spence is vulnerable that doesn’t mean he is. It’s Spence’s job to prove them wrong. I have seen fighters get “picked on”, but I don’t believe this is the case. 

The response that you gave on race issues in boxing, was very informative. I think you pissed off lots of people but you were accurate and fair. Ironically the issue surfaces with Shakur Stevenson being called boring by his own broadcast team the same night of your mailbag. I think Shakur could have scored the ko, but he just wasn’t willing to. How does a talent like Shakur go from being a great fighter, to an entertaining fighter?

Bread’s Response: I think a fighter’s first duty is to WIN. It’s why wins and losses are recorded. It counts. After that I think they should IMPRESS. Display their skillsets and athleticism. Sometimes that is enough. But against outmatched opponents, fighter’s last duty is to entertain. Whether it be by ko, more violence, ring costumes etc. I think Shakur got 2 out of 3 right. He won every single round. He won the fight. He barely got touched and he displayed his skillset, so he was impressive. But he didn’t score a ko on an outmatched opponent, so he wasn’t entertaining after a certain point, one sided fights like that become monotonous. 

Ok.. before the fight I kept seeing the comparisons between Floyd Mayweather and Shakur Stevenson. ESPN tried to sell that Shakur is basically better after 15 fights. But Andre Ward correctly pointed out that after 5 years as a pro, which is much more accurate, Floyd is way further along. Floyd fought in the 1996 Olympics. Shakur in the 2016 Olympics. So by 2001, Floyd was had defeated Diego Corrales in a masterpiece, Angel Manfredy and Genaro Hernandez. All by stoppage. Shakur Stevenson’s best opponent so far has been Joet Gonzales, who is a solid fighter. It’s not all of Shakur’s fault because he is being avoided but that’s the truth. So they keep making these comparisons. Sometimes the fighter delivers, and sometimes it’s unwarranted. I believe Stevenson is on the level but it was just too soon for some of the comparisons. 

They keep talking about how low the % of the punches that are thrown at him land. And it’s obvious that he’s hard to hit. But here is why STATS in boxing are skewed. Shakur is intoxicated with his GIFTS like all young fighters and gifted people in general. He knows it’s hard to hit him. His eyes and feet are really his defense. 90% of the punches that he makes miss, he simply identifies when the opponent is punching and steps back quickly like a FENCER. He does not want to get touched by a punch. Now.. so Shakur is a brash young man. He’s super talented but people want to see blood, he talks that talk. I get that. Floyd fought a fighter similar to Shakur’s opponent in Phillip Ndou. Floyd literally almost beat Ndou to death. I think Top Rank wanted a similar outcome. Here is the difference. Those STATS. 

The broadcast keeps bringing up that Shakur does not get hit. But in order to finish an overmatched but dangerous opponent, you have to be willing to get in the midrange, make him open up and hit him with multiple shots to punish him. Most fighter who POT SHOT are not 1 punch KO specialist. Floyd wasn’t that either. Roy Jones is the best I have ever seen. Where he can be in ONE SHOT, POT SHOT mode and still be a KO machine. Watch Roy vs Thomas Tate. Ok now back to Shakur again. Shakur is not a one punch KO guy. He’s sharp. He can punch. But it’s gong to take him a high volume to stop a tough willing dangerous fighter. Loma isn’t either but Loma knows how to break that distance, make a fighter open up and he punches with him. % wise it may seem that Floyd got hit more than Shakur. I’m not going to argue over punch stat statistics. But while Shakur jumps BACK and tries to make you miss completely. When in kill mode, Floyd was willing to block, parry and not be hit CLEAN. That’s difference than trying to make an opponent MISS completely with every shot by jumping BACK and not being hit CLEAN. 

That’s why Floyd was able to score more KOs than Shakur at a similar stage. He knew HOW to do that. And he was willing to do that. It’s no indictment on Shakur. A fighter can’t rush certain things, especially when they don’t come natural to him. He may not ever get that layer to his game. He may not ever be an ELITE finisher. But that doesn’t mean he won’t be a great fighter and most importantly a WINNER. We have to see if his game evolves into that. Right now it’s not. And that’s ok. I don’t want to get into the racial stuff everytime I talk about a certain style of fighter. It’s just not good for the soul. I don’t think it’s all racially motivated anyway. Some of it may be. Some of it may be a style preference. And some of it may be people not understanding what Shakur is at this point. He wasn’t willing to risk himself in order to get a KO. His opponent had HARD energy on that right hand. Shakur felt that and played it safe. Would I have liked to see a KO. Hell yes! But is it a reason to be alarmed, hell no!

Talented fighters who happen to be killers like Ray Leonard and Terence Crawford are rare. Floyd Mayweather was a killer at 130-35. Shakur has the talent but those comparisons are premature. I will only criticize Stevenson’s style if it cost him a fight. He allows himself to be outboxed and never steps to the opponent then I will criticize him. Pernell Whitaker was getting out boxed by Diabolys Hurtado. Ray Leonard was getting out boxed by Tommy Hearns. Both Whitaker and Leonard turned into killers and got their man out of there. If Shakur’s moment comes and he still plays it safe then that’s when he deserves criticism. Let him be himself and as time goes on, he will be placed correctly where he belongs. Time always tells. 

Hey Bread,

I've been reading your mailbag lately and you really know your stuff, more than many so-called boxing experts IMO and I've been following boxing for over 20 years. Anyway, I've been following many of the prospects and potential future stars. I have seen some footage of Floyd Schofield and Jalil Hackett, both only 18 year old and they look very impressive. It might be too early to say but do either or both have the potential to be a top PFP fighter in the future? Perhaps you have inside knowledge the general fan would not know that can't be found on the internet.

On a side note, I do believe that Boots Ennis will become the next PFP if not ducked by the top fighters in and around his weight category.

Kevin Hirose, DRIVE Strength & Conditioning, Strength & Conditioning Specialist

Bread’s Response: Thank you. I haven’t seen enough of Schofield or Hackett to say if they will be in the P4P list someday. It’s very early so time will tell, but I will be on the look out. As for Ennis I believe he will be. Welterweight (147lbs) has such a rich tradition that traditionally the best welterweight on the planet is always on the P4P list. In fact most times the best two welterweights are usually on the list. I believe it’s because of the BELL CURVE. There are simply more men who settle in at 147lbs in terms of boxing in general. So when a fighter is the best at that division he’s usually special. Same goes for 160lbs. But 147lbs is best in the history of boxing. Welterweight has seen the peaks of Mickey Walker, Barney Ross, Jimmy McClarnin, Henry Armstrong, Ray Robinson, Carmen Basilion, Kid Gavilan, Emille Griffith, Jose Naploes, Wilfred Benitez, Ray Leonard, Roberto Duran, Tommy Hearns, Donald Curry, Pernell Whitaker, Oscar De La Hoya, Felix Trinidad, Shane Mosley, Floyd Mayweather, Miguel Cotto, Manny Pacquiao, Errol Spence and Terence Crawford. 

The division is so good that every decade it produces at least 2 HOF, 2 ATG. Right now welterweight has two fighters in Spence and Crawford who are top 5 P4P in the world. Ennis is so talented that many feel he could beat both if given the opportunity. If Ennis beats a solid contender I can see him being on the P4P list without a title. That’s how good he is in my opinion. Unfortunately for him I don’t think he will get a title shot in 2021. That’s a shame but that’s boxing in this era. 

Greetings Bread Man!

I hope you and you are well and off to a good Summer so far. My Man, you've been red hot with your predictions and analysis of late!! You were spot on with the Filipino Flash's clutch knock out last week and again in this past week's Bread Bag you were concerned about Hurd overthinking and second guessing himself and the effects that would have on him in the ring. Unbelievable- that's exactly what happened. Like yourself, I like Hurd and I was hoping that wouldn't be the case. As you've mentioned over the years, that style doesn't have as long a shelf life, but I think if his head was clear and he wasn't over thinking and second-guessing himself, he'd have a couple good years left before physically burning himself out. For his sake, I hope he can work through that.       

Which brings me to the reason for my post this week. As a lifelong boxing fan and a therapist by trade, I'm fascinated by the mental and psychological aspect of boxing. It's been said that Cus D'amato claimed that boxing was 90% mental. I've heard his protege Teddy Atlas say it's at least 70% mental. It's impossible to actually qualify with precision how much of the sport is mental versus physical, but we can safely say there's a huge mental component to the sport. I'm fascinated by how some guys (Marquez, Pacquiao, Holyfield, Duran and Hearns to name but a few) can take a loss, even a bad one, and come back to do great things, including winning world championships, while other guys are never quite the same. Two guys in particular come to mind.

I remember watching Mike Jones on the PacMan-Bradley undercard against Randall Bailey. He was undefeated, a red hot prospect (who happened to hold an alphabet title at the time) and was beating Bailey so soundly that Bailey's trainer John David Jackson had gotten frustrated enough at Bailey not listening to his instructions, that he left the corner to take a seat at ring side! You don't see that too often! Then suddenly Bailey landed a perfect (I know better than to say "lucky") punch to end the fight. Now, Jones did not take very much punishment throughout the fight, but that marked the end of his run at that level, which tells me that something happened mentally and psychologically that prevented him from simply learning from the experience and coming back resolved to fix whatever flaw caused him to get caught with such a great shot. I remember him coming back for a tune up down here in Atlantic City and he ended up getting knocked out, and I haven't heard a thing about him since. I felt bad because I really liked Jones, especially because of his being a local Philly kid, so I'm not knocking him, but I do think it's a great example of a guy who mentally couldn't get past a knockout defeat on the big stage.      

The second guy is the main reason for my post this week. Adrien Broner... Full disclosure, I enjoyed watching AB take his first 0 against Maidana. While acknowledging his talent in the ring, I was very turned off by his antics both in and outside of the ring. It's one thing to talk trash before a fight, but AB used to continue trashing guys after he'd beaten them, something not even the great smack-talking Mayweather wouldn't do. I was also turned off by his level of competition pre-Maidana. I think it can be said that AB suffered from the Al Haymon formula of "path of least resistance" in climbing the ladder and building an impressive record while avoiding any real adversity in the ring.

They cherry picked Paulie as an opportunity to get AB another title at another weight class, but I don't think that move did him any real favors, because now he's allowed himself to acclimate to a heavier, easier to make weight, and now he had a title to defend in the hottest and most stacked division in the sport (at that time). He could've pulled a Canelo and moved right back down after taking that title, but he chose to take that fight with Maidana, to his credit, but not his benefit. I don't think AB has been the same since that night, despite winning subsequent fights and even picking up another belt. Granted, the outside drama and legal problems have played a huge role in the undoing of his career, but I think there's more to it than that. I think he lost his confidence and swagger and has been fighting cautiously, almost timidly, as a result. I find myself in the peculiar position of actually rooting for this guy, both as a fighter, but more importantly, as a human being. We all make mistakes and we all (hopefully) grow up and learn from them. I feel like this kid was actually the goods, based on things I've heard other trainers say about him going back to the amateurs, as well as what I know I saw with my own eyes. I saw a guy with incredible speed, power, ferocity, a tight defense, and a killer instinct, overflowing with confidence and self-belief. I don't see anything like that any more when he steps in the ring, other than maybe the speed.   

So, my question for you Bread is this: Firstly, what do you make of my analysis of AB? More importantly, if hypothetically AB showed up at your gym in Philly wanting to change gears, ready to learn and follow directions and commit to his craft, what would you do with him to get him back on track? Do you think it's too late? What stylistic changes would you make? I personally think he had the potential to be a mix of Floyd and Meldrick Taylor. He seemed to have Floyd-like speed and reflexes with much more killer instinct and a propensity to brawl in the pocket more at the lower weights. I other words, he had the potential to be a much more crowd- pleasing and exciting fighter than Floyd. He now seems like a guy without a weight class. He's too small for 147 but 135 and 140 might not be in the cards for him. What say you?

Thanks again for all you do! I absolutely love reading your Bread Bag every week, I appreciate you answering my last question concerning Tyson-Holyfield and alleged PED use, though I know it was a difficult topic for you to speak on,  and I'm psyched to hear there's a book in the future. You can count on my purchase! Lastly, I think Pac has the potential to make this Spence fight like Hagler-Leonard. He's going to have the crowd on his side and I think he can win the fight by stealing rounds with crowd-pleasing flurries as well as the perception that Spence should dominate him at this age and stage of his  career. We may be in for an upset. As a Pac fan, I certainly would love that! God Bless you my friend and keep punching!

Sean in Atlantic City

Bread’s Response: Man Nonito is something, I’m still gushing over his victory which makes him an ATG in my opinion. 

You know I think of something when I think of Jarrett Hurd. ACCEPTANCE. Sometimes WE want a certain kind of compliment and when we don’t get it we try to steer ourselves towards that compliment. Jarrett is black kid from and urban area (DC). I think it’s cooler for him to be compared to James Toney than it is Antonio Margarito. If Jarrett realizes that, that stuff doesn’t matter. And he’s Jarrett Hurd and allows the natural course of his instincts to take over, he can make another run. Hurd must be a very well liked kid because I’ve received at least a dozen emails about him, all concerning emails and wishing him the best.

Mike Jones is a cousin of mine through marriage. I was watching him vs Bailey at a fight party on the Pac vs Bradley1 undercard. I don’t like watching fights with casuals, so me and a professional fighter watched it in another room. During the fight the pro fighter kept saying that Mike was winning easy. I told him that Bailey was setting Mike up and he was going to clip him. I wanted to be WRONG so bad because Mike is the nicest and most humble kid you could ever meet. But I couldn’t help what I was seeing. I will get back to Mike in one second but I want to touch on the technical aspect of and mental aspect of what Bailey did. 

There is a myth in boxing that you shouldn’t look for one shot. But that’s not true. George Foreman did it with Moorer. Tarver did it his whole career. Arguello did it vs Costello. Nonito did it for the most part of his career. Wilder does it every fight. Carbajal did it v s Arce. If a fighter can’t out box or out move his opponent. It’s counter productive for him to try. What will happen is, he will lose his shock effect of landing a punch the opponent hasn’t timed or seen. For example Wilder’s right hand is shocking. But if he threw that same right hand 10x every round, it wouldn’t be so shocking anymore and the opponent would have time to brace for it. So a patient fighter that knows he can’t win by decision will lay on his Sunday punch. I saw that in Jones vs Bailey. 

It’s demoralizing to some of the fighters who get clipped. Some can dismiss it as a lucky punch. Some will go in a state of depression. I think with Mike he was already a quiet and sort of an introvert. So when this happened he just removed himself from interacting with so many people. I think he tried to rearrange the parts of his team and he was never able to get back on track. I think his business structure of his team frustrated him and as far as the boxing part, he most likely stayed out too long. The easiest way to get over a bad loss, is a good win. Staying out of the ring and being reminded of your last time in the ring is no good for the soul of a fighter. It’s very hard for a fighter to get over a loss, if he sits around dwelling on it. The reason fighters 25+ years ago, got over losses easier, is because they fought through them. If you notice Peter Quillin did the same thing Mike Jones did. He sat out almost 2 years after losing to Danny Jacobs and his career never got back on track. You create anxiety by overthinking too much. 

The interesting part is Mike can still fight. I used him as a sparring partner 2 years ago and he did great. But everything has to be on point in boxing. The business side. The physical side. Favor with the people who make the decisions. Everything. The last time I spoke to him he still wanted to come back but I haven’t heard much from him since.

 One of the reasons fighters come up with so many EXCUSES after a loss is because they are subconsciously trying to compartmentalize their loss. I actually give fighters a break for coming up with excuses because I understand why. But, Sometimes the best thing a fighter can do, is to simply say, the other guy just had a great night and move on. I think everything collapsed on Mike all at once and it was hard to deal with. Great kid though. 

When I first saw Adrien Broner, I told someone that he finishes like Ray Leonard. People threw it up in my face later but watch Broner at 130-35. He was the best finisher in boxing for about 3 years. As we know, there are some great talents in boxing who CAN’T finish. Broner had no such problem. His finish of Jason Litzsau was splendid if you knew what you were looking at. Broner was ascending towards greatness but he jumped 2 weight divisions. In retrospect it was the wrong move, but hindsight is always 20/20. You have to remember that Maidana had previously lost to Amir Khan and Devon Alexander. As good as Alexander and Khan are thought to be Broner was looked at as more in his prime and having a higher ceiling in 2013. So on paper the Maidana fight seemed reasonable. It only became a “Bad” move after Broner lost. 

As all major drop offs occur, it’s usually multiple things. Obviously weight was an issue for Broner. He has the frame of a lightweight but he can’t make the weight. At welterweight it’s hard for him to score stoppages. He started out at 130lbs, like Floyd Mayweather but Floyd’s game is more well rounded. Broner was compared to Floyd and he patterned some of his style after Floyd. But the way he fought in terms of physicality was more Shane Mosley. Broner was a fast, athletic, forceful power puncher. Who sort of walked his opponents down. He was fast but he wasn’t really outboxing fighters. Even when Floyd was getting kos, he was boxing his way to kos. So once Broner moved up in weight he had to rely more on boxing and IQ and less on physicality and that’s where the trouble came in at. Broner was 23 when he moved up to 147. Floyd was 28 and much more seasoned. So their levels of developments were off, in terms of when they moved up.

I would never say it’s too late but it won’t be easy to turn things around especially because Broner fights at welterweight. But it depends on what Adrien is fighting for. I always say, fight for the legacy and your performances and team will take care of the money. Adrien has already made BIG money but of course everyone wants to make more. But everyone’s motivation is different. I don’t know Adrien personally so I can’t say what he fights for, but I still think he’s a tremendous talent. 

Out of all of the tough fights that Broner has taken, I thought he had a real chance vs Mikey Garcia. Broner matches up well with Mikey in terms of size. I think he’s taller. I know he’s longer and faster. I still don’t know what to make of Mikey beating Broner so easily. Broner had too many advantages in that fight to lose that fight by 9 rounds to 3, I believe that’s what the scoring was. I definitely think that was a mental loss, because physically Broner had too many advantages. I still don’t know what happened in that fight when I think about, I asked a big money guy going into that fight why was Garcia such a big favorite. He told me wait until  Garcia wins about 8 or 9 rounds and Broner doesn’t let his hands go…The line makers knew.

As far as what I would do if he asked me train him. I won’t comment on that. I see too many trainers say what they would do. But it’s half way taking a shot at the current trainer. How do we know that his current trainer, Mike Stafford hasn’t told him to do certain things and Broner just hasn’t responded accordingly. I think Stafford is an excellent trainer. He’s produced a load of talent out of the Cincinatti area as amateurs and pros. He’s had 2 world champions in Adrien Broner and Rashee Warren. Many national champions and Olympians as an amateur coach. Stafford knows what he’s doing and just because Broner didn’t match the lofty expectations that doesn’t mean Stafford did anything wrong. I know you didn’t ask me that, but I don’t believe it’s proper etiquette to say what you would have done as a coach publicly because we don’t see Stafford and Broner in the gym daily. We don’t know what Broner does in his personal life that effects him as boxer. 

There is a lot of pressure on Errol Spence in this fight with Manny Pacquiao. If he struggles with a 42 yr old Pacquiao it would be hard to picture him as an ATG. If he loses he can forget about it. Everyone likes money. But as a competitor, attribution is always wanted. I believe Errol wants to be GREAT. When you want to be great and people see great things in you, then there is pressure. Errol needs to dominate Manny in order to fulfill his legacy and promise. It may not be fair but that’s the reality. This fight can turn Errol into a diamond or a solid rock. Manny can use the pressure of the fight against Errol. Manny can fight a smoke and mirrors fight, make Errol press and rush things and take advantage of it. I think Errol wins but I’m curious….

Hey Bread,

Hope you and your family are safe and well. I was in my bag over the weekend and watched a few fights of my favourite fighter Salvador Sanchez.

Bread I was getting too carried away and I admit I am extremely biased here but I couldn’t see any fighter around his weight class in that era beating him the talent God blessed Sanchez with was unreal! My questions to you are where does he rank on your rankings of best Mexican fighters ever and who do your think stylistically would have been the biggest challenge for him if he did not unfortunately pass away?

Thanks for your time.

Bread’s Response: This is how good Sanchez was. Ring Magazine did a list of the best fighters of every decade, then the list of their 10 best fighters ever. In the decade of the 80s, 1. Ray Leonard 2. Marvin Hagler 3. Salvador Sanchez….And Sanchez died in 1982. That’s how good he was. He was rated over Michael Spinks, Aaron Pryor, Larry Holmes and Mike Tyson all great fighters from the 80s. As you all know by now Ray Leonard is my favorite fighter. But Leonard is not the fighter I study the most in terms of watching their old fights. I watch everything Ricardo Lopez does. He’s the most consistent fighter I’ve ever seen. He has ZERO bad nights. I watch Julio Cesar Chavez’s early fights. His late 80s fights were actually better than his fights in the 90s. Apex Edwin Rosario. I watch Roberto Duran at lightweight. He could be the best fighter ever during those years. I watch Alexis Arguello during his featherweight and junior lightweight title reigns. And I watch Salvador Sanchez. Both fights with Danny Lopez. Wilfredo Gomez and Azumah Nelson. Sanchez is as good as everyone  I named. Sanchez was special but he wasn’t unbeatable not even in his prime. 

He had a loss and a draw on his record. He was held close by Pat Coldwell and Patrick Ford. I think Eusabio Pedraza would have been tough on him and Azumah Nelson would have given him hell in a rematch. But that doesn’t mean he wouldn’t have kept winning. It just means that he would have had some competition. I love Sanchez. But he gets slightly overrated. Not because he wasn’t an ATG. But because we only saw him at his APEX. There is no room for criticism after a slight drop off. It’s like the Tupac/Biggie nostalgia. They died at their peaks. So Sanchez had 8 title defenses by 1982. He was 23. In the next few years, not only was Pedraza and Nelson at 126lbs. But Jeff Fenech would have been emerging by the mid 80s. Julio Cesar Chavez won a title at 130 by 1984. Sanchez would have surely moved up. Pernell Whitaker was a 1984 Gold Medalist at 132lbs. So by the end of the decade Sanchez who is slightly older than Whitaker, Chavez, Fenech and even Barry McGuigan would had all of those great fighters to deal with.

Boxing is a one on one sport but one person doesn’t determine your fate. The totality of tough fights can wear a fighter out. I think Sanchez would have lost a few if he completed the decade. Not in terms of getting exposed but just fighting all of those tough fights, with elite trainers getting to know your style and preparing for it. And the chances of having an off night increase with every great night. Again I could see Sanchez winning titles at 130 and possibly 135. But I don’t believe he would have ran the table and been undefeated throughout 3 divisions. Not in the 80s. It was too much work and the mentality of fighting the best was different back then. Sanchez was a GUN, he would’ve fought the killers. 

Hello Mr Edwards,

Hope you and yours are in great shape. Your answer to the last question in the last mailbag was a master class. I am talking about where you debunked the myth about fighters not being ready. On to what I would like to discuss this week. Why do people keep referring to Mayweather-Paul as a fight? The thing was a money-grabbing charade. For as great as Mayweather was, he's now clearly a disgrace to the sport of boxing. But the economics make sense for him, so kudus to him. One of the people who wrote in last week said Spence declared he might fight Crawford after the Pacman fight. You educated me on the business side of boxing. That lesson says to me Spence speaks with a forked tongue. He knows, everyone at PBC know, that Crawford wrecks him. If there are paydays for Spence at 154, I doubt he risks the Crawford fight. Because he'll fight Crawford on even terms for maybe 7 or 8 rounds but if he makes it to the final bell, it's a small victory for him. But I feel Crawford takes him out in those last four rounds. That's if somehow he gets past Pacman, which I doubt. Pacman has seen everything Spence brings to the table. Spence has never come across anyone like Pacman.

Here's my question for the week. Kennedy McKinney. What went wrong? I believe he was an excellent amateur. He never quite attained the heights as a pro. I know you don't like to get into the personal lives of fighters but do you think McKinney becomes a great professional if it wasn't for the drugs?

Lastly, why do you trainers show such a reluctance to become involved in the personal lives of fighters? I once heard the late Angelo Dundee tell an amusing story about not becoming personally involved. But seriously, Mr Edwards, go back and read your mailbags. I know you say you don't read them. Let me tell you this. Them so-called life coaches got nothing on you. You are more than just a boxing coach. You offer life long advice. I believe you guys are the most important people in the lives of the boxers you train, not just their careers. You greatly underestimate your own importance. Kambosos' mouth is going to be his downfall. It's going to be Tyson-Spinks all over again. Or worse, Tyson-Frazier. Who wins Anthony Joshua against Joe Frazier? I think Frazier cuts him down to size. Frazier is far superior to Andy Ruiz. I will give you my breakdown of Fury-Wilder III next time. Wilder only needs make two or three adjustments.

Keep punching Mr Edwards.

Katlholo, Johannesburg, South Africa. 

Bread’s Response: I’m not upset at Mayweather for fighting an exhibition. I’m really not. It’s no big deal to me. If it counted on his record I probably wouldn’t like it. But an exhibition that he’s paid for, I don’t get the emotions either way. Some people love the events and some people hate them. I say to both sides, it’s just an exhibition. 

If Spence fights and beats Pacquiao and then he fights Crawford no one can complain. Let’s see what he does…..I agree that Spence has never seen anyone like Pacman. But I also think that Pac has never seen anyone like Spence. Mayweather is not a southpaw. Oscar isn’t either. Neither is Cotto. And neither is Mosley. Those are the best fighters Manny has fought at welterweight. Spence may not be the BEST fighter Manny has fought. But his size and length are different than anything Manny has ever faced. I also think Spence may be the most physically strong fighter Manny has faced since Joshua Clottey or Antonio Margarito. Manny was about 31 or 32 when he fought them. Spence is DOG strong. To have to deal with that at 42 is different. If Manny wins this fight, it will arguably be the best win in boxing history. He has massive length, age and physical strength to overcome. It would be the equivalent of Floyd Mayweather beating Jermall Charlo for his title at 160lbs. It sounds really hard doesn’t it? 

Kennedy McKinney was an excellent fighter. Not quite great but excellent for his era. And yes, I do think his drug issues were an issue with his in the ring performances. It’s unfortunate but the truth is often unfortunate. 

I like Teofimo Lopez to stop George Kambosos in a solid fight. I just think Lopez is too talented in every area. He’s more explosive. He’s faster. He’s quicker. He seems stronger. His reaction time is faster. The eyeball test says that Kambosos will be game because he’s young and undefeated. He has heart. But he’s not on the level in terms of talent and pedigree. If Kambosos wins it would be monumental in my opinion. 

I was told by a HOF trainer to never fall in love with a fighter. I was told by several older respected trainers that all fighters are the same. I was told by a HOF promoter that all fighters are the same. I was told by powerful people in boxing, to make money and let the fighters do whatever they want. I respected all of these people’s opinions but I chose and still choose to do things my way. I don’t mind getting close to a fighter. It makes the chemistry better. But I will admit, I won’t get close to fighters with a certain profile and personality traits. 

I have seen up close and from a far fighters USE trainers to a point of depression on the trainers. I have seen fighters pay their EARLY trainers 10% for their early stage fights. Then once they get into 6 figures try to pay trainers a FLAT rate to SAVE money. I have seen fighters take advice from trainers early on in their career. Then once they make money that same guidance and advice the fighter claims becomes intrusive. Being an EARLY trainer is said to be similar to a father. But it’s more of a STEP FATHER. Because STEP FATHERS are valued and loved as long as things are going well and they’re doing things for the FIGHTER but when they have to discipline the fighter, the fighter turns on them, just like children and they remind the step father, they aren’t THEIR REAL FATHERS.

I have seen trainers finance fighter’s careers as amateurs in terms of paying for trips, equipment and tournaments off of lower middle class salaries of 40k/year and less. And then those fighters leave the trainers once they make it big time forgetting what the trainers did for them. I have seen fighters take advantage of the love trainers have for them, and pay them literally a month after their fights. I have seen fighters turn their child hood trainers into spit bucket carriers once they make it big.

I personally have given fighters 6 figures in terms of help in their personal/professional lives for various reasons. I built a house with an inlaw suite in mind for my fighters. I have let fighters stay in my home around my wife and children. I’ve bailed them out of legal trouble. Obtained life insurance policies for them. Taken them to get their driver’s license. Picked them up for the gym and dropped them off when they didn’t have cars. Offered my wife to watch their children. Been a character witness in court. Actually so many things I don’t have room to state them all. 

For these things I have had fighters appreciate and love me. I’ve also had fighters talk bad about me and be ingrates. And make me out to be self serving because investing in them benefited me also, like somehow it’s wrong for me to benefit IF they somehow make it big in boxing.  

In the Tyson documentary on ABC, Cus D mato was somehow made out to be self serving because he as a boxing trainer, saw something in a 12 year old juvenile delinquent who could fight. The way they portrayed D mato was thankless and disgusting. At 12 years old Mike Tyson had been arrested over 30 times. He was on course to be a menace to society. And because Dmato a boxing trainer, saw that he could be a special boxer, gets villainized as a self serving white man. I know there is exploitation in all of sports. I know racism exist. But this portrayal of Cus was disturbing. It was easier to attack Cus Dmato than it was Tyson’s homelife.Dmato let dozens of kids live with him. He trained dozens more kids. Was he self serving with any of those kids who didn’t turn out to be much more than gym fighters? What if Tyson had got in trouble at say 16 years old and went to jail for a few years and his career got derailed? Would Cus Dmator be self serving then? He would have lost the money, time and resources he put into Tyson? He was only called self serving because Tyson turned out to be a heavyweight champion. That means Dmato was successful. Not self serving. 

For every fighter that turns out to be GREAT. 100 turn out to be just marginal gym fighters. Promoters want managers they can control. Managers want trainers they can control. Trainers are the most important part of the process in developing a fighter. They spend more time with the fighter and they have the least amount of job security, and they get paid less in terms of hour for hour work. Trainers do this knowing that 95% of the time if a fighter loses or makes it big, the fighter will leave them. And you wonder why some trainers don’t get close to fighters. There is a documentary coming out about trainers in the DC area. The great Adrian Davis a trainer from the area is being portrayed. After you watch it, you tell me if you think trainers should get close to fighters. 

I would pick Frazier over Joshua. The Frazier of 1967-71 vs Jimmy Ellis, Bob Foster, Buster Mathis and in Ali1 is a monster and one of the 10 best heavyweights that ever lived. Joshua’s stamina would be destroyed by Frazier. Frazier lost a step after the 1st Ali fight. Don’t look at that Frazier. He would carry Joshua too fast. He would get low on Joshua and put him on the ropes. His engine would be far superior and he’s quicker. This is a horrible match up for Joshua.

What were your thoughts on Top Rank releasing Elvis Rodriguez? He seemed like a promising prospect and one loss and he cuts. It doesn’t seem right. They didn’t cut Felix Verdejo. Am I missing something.

Bread’s Response: I really don’t have thoughts on it. As fans you guys have probably not seen a contract between a fighter and a promoter. In these contracts a promoter can RELEASE a fighter for many reasons. Getting arrested. Personal conduct. And unfortunately LOSING a fight. It may be cold but it’s the reality of boxing. Boxing is a business. And in this business a promoter has to invest it’s time and resources into building a fighter. The Promoter has a right to an ROI. Return On their Investment. If the Promoter feels like the fighter doesn’t have the potential to get their return they may part ways. If the promoter does not see an upside after a loss, they can cut their losses early instead of late. 

Promoters have this right and fighters need to understand this. For all we know it could be character reasons. Maybe Rodriguez doesn’t train hard enough. Maybe he has people around him the promoter doesn’t like. There can be various reasons. You never know, what the promoter really knows about the fighter. Maybe it’s really simple, Top Rank doesn’t like the fact he lost to Kenneth Simms. Maybe they feel like if Rodriguez was the goods he would have beaten Simms. I did notice that Rodriguez walked 1st vs Simms indicating he was the B side to the fight. You would assume that Simms was the B side but he wasn’t according to the unspoken rule of who walks 1st and who is introduced 1st. Top Rank is great at investing in talent. They guided Cotto, Crawford, Mayweather, Oscar and Pavlik recently. All fighters who had significant undefeated streaks and are big time millionaires. But every once in a blue they can be wrong. They released Andy Ruiz and he went onto be the heavyweight champion of the world after he was cut. So let’s see how this plays out. To me it’s part of the game looking from the surface because I don’t know what’s going on behind the scenes.

Errol Spence is ducking Keith Thurman. Thurman is the best welterweight on the PBC roster and Spence keeps saying he doesn’t want to fight him because Thurman is corny and he doesn’t want to fight him. If you don’t like someone isn’t that a good reason to legally beat them up?

Bread’s Response: Not liking someone is a good reason to beat them up. But I don’t think this is a duck. Spence is fighting Manny Pacquiao who just beat Thurman. Thurman hasn’t fought since losing. It’s impossible for this to be a duck. It could only be a duck if Thurman was active and beating top guys or became a mandatory and Spence refused to fight him. Thurman hasn’t fought in 2 years and in his last fight, he lost. This is not a duck. You guys don’t know what a duck is. Spence has been a big PPV draw. He’s been able to get some big fights lately. But he’s only been able to get big fights as the A side. As a rising prospect and contender he wasn’t able to get any of the PBC welterweights who were ex champions or champions to give him a shot. The best fighter who fought him while he was rising was Chris Algieri. Spence called Thurman out for years and didn’t get a shot. He had to go to the UK as a mandatory and fight Kell Brook. Maintaining your diet while you travel is not easy. Errol won the fight and became a superstar. And now Thurman who hasn’t fought in 2 years, coming of a loss is calling Spence out. 

I commend Thurman for wanting the big fight but just because Spence won’t give it to him it doesn’t mean he’s ducking him. Spence is fighting Manny Pacquiao who beat Thurman. Thurman hasn’t fought since he lost to Pacman. So Spence doesn’t like Thurman and doesn’t want to give him a pay day coming off of a loss and 2 year lay off. That’s not a DUCK. That’s just Errol not wanting to help Thurman make money. Errol is holding a grudge on someone he doesn’t like. I understand that. I don’t help people eat I don’t like either. It would only be a duck if Thurman was his mandatory or was reestablishing himself with someone good wins. He can’t be ducking a fighter who hasn’t fought in 2 years and coming off a loss. It’s ridiculous if you even think that.

Hi Breadman,

I pray  you  and   your family are doing well. I found it interesting after reading you last mailbag  about black fighters being  boring that 2 black fighters(Tim Bradley and Jamel Herring) came out recently  and were saying how boring Shakur Stevenson’s last fight was. The fight was awful to watch and I couldn’t stomach it and I went to bed after the 5th rd. Some fighters are just not entertaining for me whether they be black ,white or Hispanic. I didn’t watch much of Malignaggi, Spadafora, Camacho, Whitaker , Mayweather, Mamby, or Ward. I found no entertainment value in watching them unless they fought some I was interested in then I would watch them.

I watched Chavez vs Camacho because of Chavez not Camacho and I watched Maidana vs Mayweather for Maidana and not for Floyd. I was spoiled by watching killers like Pryor, Hearns, Arguello, Hagler, Frazier, Foreman, Holyfield, Toney, Benn, Saad Muhammed, Mugabi, Jackson MacCallum and others so I just can’t watch a lot of guys now. I don’t like being lectured on appreciating all styles. I like what  l like and that is aggressive fighters who go for knockouts and not guys fighting to outpoint each other. I like to play chess but not watch it.

Boxing purists make like it but I’m a casual fan and when I tune in I want to be entertain. Shakur Stevenson who I had never seen before definitely won’t be someone I will be watching in the future unless he takes on Tank Davis and I will be praying that Tank puts his ass to sleep so in the future Shakur won’t be putting all of us fans to sleep.  The irony of Bradley saying that he wasn’t considered one of the more exciting fighters when he fought. Keep up the great work You are the best read in Boxing right now and ever. You , Doug Fischer and Emmanuel Steward are all time favorites to listen and read  but you have become my No. 1 favorite. Doug has fallen off a little bit. Too much mythical matchups for my taste.                                 

God bless and take care,

Blood and Guts from Philly

Bread’s Response: You definitely have a right to like what you like. I don’t believe in forcing styles on the public. You’re entitled to that. I just feel that certain fighters get more pressure to entertain than others. But I feel you and I hope I didn’t come off as lecturing. I personally enjoy watching all styles with a preference to fighters who are more violent. But maybe I’m sick, lol. However, I do find it impressive to watch pure boxers. I was never appalled with Rigondeaux like many. Rigo had a machete for a left hand. He had underrated power.

I like your point. Fighters who fight in Stevenson’s style have to be matched with killers. Often times they slay the killers but the public needs to see it. I’ve seen that Hopkins vs Tito scenario often in these matchups. Mayweather vs Corrales is another……Stevenson will need THAT guy…

I thought Tim Bradley was a little harsh towards Stevenson. There is a difference between being honest and being candid. Bradley claimed he was trying to “stay awake”. That was pretty rough on Stevenson. But Bradley has also been a big Stevenson supporter so.....It was ironic though because I remember Bradley saying he switched trainers because Joel Diaz’s style was too violent. And that a fighter can only have but so much WILL. But maybe he was saying that because he was hurt so bad by Provodnikov. I don’t know… I also think Bradley who wasn’t a big puncher would have tried harder to KO the opponent Stevenson had in front of him. But Bradley didn’t have Stevenson speed or range. So maybe Tim just expected more. It’s ok if Stevenson gets held to high standards. He’s that talented. Let’s see if he’s mature about the criticism. I think he knows he didn’t light the world on fire after he had his opponent outclassed.


There will be a lot of comments regarding Wilder's actions during the press conference but let me touch on it real quick before moving on. I felt his message was clear, I'm not trying to hear any noise and I'll let my fists do the talking for me on July 24! On to the Shakur Stevenson fight from the weekend. I feel like Stevenson is the type of fighter that will take what you give him and by nature since he is so defensive, he's not going to look exciting against an overmatched opponent. As funny as it sounds, the better the opponent, the more exciting his fights will be and the more Stevenson will open up. I find it funny that he won another 12-0 decision and yet his stock dropped. Look, he's not an offensive juggernaut like Ennis or Pacquiao or Chocolatio so he's not going to shine as much as those against certain opponents and he's not going to open up more than he has to. I don't care what anyone says, he is LIVE against Lomachenko and that is a damn near pick-em! Do you agree?

A few of your percentage breakdown of these potential fights: Stevenson vs Lomachenko, Stevenson vs Valdez, Charlo vs Benavidez, MJ vs Fulton, Crawford vs Taylor.

Take care.

Bread’s Response: You’re right about Stevenson. I try to explain that to people all the time. The most exciting fighters aren’t always the best. Look at Rigo vs Nonito. I even like watching Nonito more but Rigo beat him. Stevenson will have to be matched tough to get appreciated.

At this point it’s not much Wilder can say. He needs to deliver on July 24th. I love the fact that he’s going for the 3rd fight. I don’t know why everyone is upset with him. Let’s see if he can pull it off. At least he’s not shying away from it. He’s running towards a man, who really hurt him bad. Either he’s crazy or he knows something. I’m interested....

Stevenson is very live vs Loma. The interesting thing is Stevenson is not the puncher Lopez is. So maybe Loma won’t respect him as much. Let’s see how Loma looks in his next fight. I don’t think he’s look 100% since the Linares fight. He seems to have a little piece of him in the ring after that fight.

Stevenson vs Loma 50/50

Stevenson vs Valdez  60/40 Stevenson

Charlo vs Benavidez  50/50

MJ vs Fulton   55/45 Fulton

Crawford vs Taylor  65/35 Crawford

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