By Stephen "Breadman" Edwards
The Daily Bread Mailbag returns with Stephen "Breadman" Edwards tackling questions such as weight cutting affecting chin resistance, Manny Pacquiao vs. Adrien Broner, the Charlo brothers, Brian Castano vs. Erislandy Lara, junior middleweight contender Jarrett Hurd, and more.
1. Does cutting too much weight affect a boxer's chin? I know that it will affect his stamina but does it also affect his chin. How much is too much as per you when it comes to weight cutting? Can moving up closer to ones natural weight class improve a boxer's chin?
2. Is there such a thing as a boxer losing his chin after a brutal beating or a knockout? I am talking about physical deterioration in terms of punch resistance (not mental). For example, I personally feel that when Roy's head hit the canvas in the Tarver fight, it messed up some nerves in his brain. I mean, we have seen it in NFL that a player keeps having concussion after having it for the first time. Roy came back too soon against Glen Johnson and had not recovered physically or psychologically. If you look at it, he got knocked out by a punch to the side of his head. Those two back to back knockouts ruined his confidence and his chin. His chin did improve but it never quite got back to being where it was.
3. We know a boxer's weight is officially measured but does the same hold true for his height, reach and arm length. For example, Pacquiao's arm length is shown 25 inches in some fights and 23 inches in others. While binge watching SRL fights, I saw some his fights showed his reach 71 inches as opposed to 74. Canelo does not look 5'9 to me. Do they ever officially measure a boxer's height, arm length and reach? How does that work?
4. Can a pressure fighter drop volume punching and adopt a patient counterpunching style? Mayweather (a outfighter) adopted a counterpunching style post having hand injuries. 90s George Foreman (a slugger) adopted a counterpunching style as he could no longer be a volume punching slugger in his 40s. Similarly, has there ever been a swarmer / pressure fighter who had a full fledged counterpunching style?
Bread’s Response: 1. Hell yes cutting too much weight can affect the punch resistance. You lose fat and water on your brain and other organs. On top of that you lose oxygen in your body. When you’re knocked out it’s because of lack of oxygen to the brain. It’s a direct correlation. And for the record anything that hurts the stamina hurts the punch resistance. Oxygen is the key.
The worst kos for a fighter to take is a late round ko when he was exhausted. In the large majority of these cases where a fighter gets seriously hurt ,the common theme is, it wasn’t a heavyweight because heavyweights don’t make weight. And the ko happened in the 2nd half of the fight.
Moving up can definitely improve a boxer’s chin.
2. Hell yes trauma can cause you to lose your chin. But here is the thing, not every ko ruins the chin. It depends on the circumstances. Kasim Ouma was kod early in his career and he went on to have a tungsten chin once he hit the top level. Manny Pacquiao was also kod early was not kod again for 13 years and faced some nice punchers on the way through.
Then you have guys like Roy Jones who’s chin seemed to damaged by one shot vs Tarver. I also agree he came back too soon vs Glen Johnson. The right hand Johnson hit Jones with I’ve seen him take 100 times before and nothing happened.
And you’re right after Roy took some time off his chin appeared better. It was very bizarre but I agree again.
3. I think some fight stats are wrong. None are 100% accurate. Canelo does not look 5’9 to me either unless he grew. He was shorter than Floyd when they fought and Floyd is 5’7” ½ to 5’8. Mostly every fighter puts their height up ½ inch. And their reach 2 inches. It’s like an unwritten rule.
Often times the networks take their words for it and they don’t do official measurements. But I have seen cases where a fighter’s posture and flexibility improved and his height and reach actually went up.
4. I think Marco Antonio Barrera adopted a counter punching style later in his career in which earlier he was a pressure fighter. What do you think?
Thanks so much for doing this, as wise as you are, I don't think you fully understand how much this means to us fans, you take a passion I love and bring it to a dimension I can't alone.
Quick one, Sugar Ray Robinson is regarded as a granite chin guy, why does this consensus exist? I've only seen him dish it out, I haven't done my homework...
If you've time, Marciano's style of hooks, they don't seem textbook, there seems to be a subtle loop and extension, any insight?
Bread’s Response: Thank you.
Sugar Ray Robinson has 202 official fights over 25 years from 1940-65. He was stopped just once from heat exhaustion in the 13th round of a light heavyweight fight where he was well ahead on the scorecards. So his one official stoppage is not looked at as a “real” stoppage.
Other than that he was never kod. He fought in an era where the gloves were very small and made of horse hair. He fought killers his entire career from turning pro at lightweight up to middleweight. He was dropped a few times but never stopped.
You have to have an iron chin to do that. Robinson was a killer, he brought the heat so he got hit. He just had a chin that held up. Even fighters in his era who were considered to have iron chins where stopped a few times because of the laws of averages. If you fight 100 times , 2 or 3 times you may get clipped. Robinson was never clipped in over 200 fights. Robinson’s chin is his most underrated quality. His chin is on the same level as Ali’s who is just more famous for his chin.
Marciano had big legs, a strong torso and he was low to the ground. Those type of punchers are vicious hookers and loopers. Marciano was a brutal puncher with either hand. He really torqued his punches and delivered with maximum leverage and snap at the end. His heavy bag work was great.
Big fan of your reports and insight from your perspective! My question, and my opinion, is that recently you said “wait and see about the Charlo’s”, as it pertains to their peak.
I respect that because I would say the same thing 95% of time about a fighter coming off a subpar performance. But here is my 5%. As the last write in on this topic stated, it looks as though they have peaked a couple of fights ago. If I’m being fair, and I am, Jermall could still see growth as a fighter, but Jermell is what he is and the best he is gonna ever be. And that’s still good enough to be champion at 154lbs.
Jermall seems to be a guy that is more grounded and therefore would take criticism better from a good trainer in Shields. James is an outstanding trainer in his own right, and one I believe should be picking up the hardware to prove it in the very near future. But, and this isn’t the trainers fault imo, Jermell and his anger will not let him progress beyond what he is now. Maybe it is because Jermall is more of a family man than Jermell and he has more people to think of before letting his actions take over.
Jermell lost that fight clearly imo, and I saw it happening as early as the 1st and 2nd round with his wildly off target punches. Harrison had great defense but it was more to do with Jermell and his over aggressive nature, trying to one up what Hurd has done lately. That to me, can not be understated because it has been very obvious the last year. Also, his reaction in the post fight interview was very childish, and lucky for him James saved him there at the very end.
My question is, and I know you have eluded to wait and see, but do you not agree that Jermell’s anger has to be reeled in before he can get better? Also, would you agree, that James is a legit up and coming trainer that seems to have class on your level and I mean that with the most sincerity? He doesn’t seem to do interviews making it about him and I like that. He seems to have his best intentions for his fighters as I believe you do. Lastly, tell J-Rock he hasn’t been forgotten and keep up the grind because he will be a champion!
Bread’s Response: Derrick James and Ronnie Shields are both the truth as trainers. If you go against them you know they both will have their guy ready. But at the end of the day no trainer is a magician and they can’t fix everything.
The Charlo Brothers both have upsides. They are 28, they didn’t have long amateur careers and I can see them both improving. It doesn’t mean they will but they can.
I do agree that Jermell has anger issues. He’s always upset. He’s always hype. And he fights mad. I believe a fighter should fight intense or focus but never mad. Jermall fights intense. He barely talks at the weigh ins. That is the big difference between the twins. Both are high strung dudes but in the ring and at the weigh ins, Jermall is much calmer.
But here is the thing, anger issues can be corrected. With the mental health practices we have available to us in this day and time I think that anger can be overcame. I’m an optimist though so I could be wrong.
I can see you observe things closely. I noticed how much calmer Jermall was also. I don’t watch social media and youtube often but I stumbled across Jermall hitting the pads with Ronnie Shields at their media days before their last fights. Ronnie was telling Jermall how to catch a body shot and counter. Jermall didn’t do it so smoothly. But his response was very impressive. He said coach whatever you want I’m going to give you what you want. That’s how a fighter is supposed to respond to their coach. Being coachable and positive is very important in handling adversity. Getting frustrated is counterproductive.
I thought both Charlo’s struggled in their fights but for some reason everyone is pushing the panic button with Jermell and I think his attitude may be why. The gut feeling is Jermall can handle adversity better because he seems more level headed.
Thank you for your weekly, thoughtful commentary (and also your occasional smack down of boxing trolls).
I really appreciate your analysis of Tony Harrison - I know the end score was controversial, yet you have to respect Harrison's patience and maturity. He stuck to his game plan and was not too swayed by the lights or cameras. His defense was on point for the first 9 rounds and Charlo had no answer for his sneaky jab - it was really an amazing performance, so fun to watch and so fun to see him get a title after sustaining some serious damage vs Hurd. Harrison is a warrior and a champion, I can't wait for his next fight.
Now to point - for all the talk of the Charlo brothers that weekend, didn't Jarrett Hurd come out looking like an even bigger stud at 154? He stopped the guy who outpointed his biggest rival - is there anything left for him to prove at 154? A fight with Munguia would be nice (Hurd MD or late KO) as would reaching undisputed status, but after seeing Harrison outpoint Charlo, I don't think Hurd has to face Charlo to settle that he is THE MAN at 154.
How do you see Jermell vs Hurd now? If Harrison's IQ, patience and maturity can beat Charlo, I think it gives Hurd the edge as well (not to mention his iron chin and power).
Finally, though I think Hurd is THE MAN at 154, I would still favor him to fight Jermell at 154 in 2020 then move up to face Jermall at 160 - beating both brothers would be very exciting from a fan perspective.
Anyways, I appreciate your writing and your work and look forward to your thoughts. Blessings to you, your family and your corner in 2019!
Bread’s Response: Hurd is the MAN at 154. But as a fighter of course he still has stuff to prove. He has to prove he can beat the next man in front of him and so on. That’s how boxing works. Hurd is only 23-0 he’s not a HOF yet.
Hurd can’t take credit for beating Charlo because Harrison did. Hurd can’t take credit for beating Munguia because he would be the favorite to do so.
At this point Hurd would be the favorite to beat Jermell but that doesn’t mean he will. I don’t think he would be the favorite to beat Jermall160. Hurd’s game is deep water drowning and who knows if he’s stronger than Jermall to walk him down at 160. We would have to see that happen.
Hurd has outperformed Jermell vs common opponents but that doesn’t mean he can beat Jermell. Erik Morales outperformed Marco Antonio Barrera vs Junior Jones and Manny Pacquiao. But when they fought each other Barrera beat him 2 out of 3. Outperforming may count in rankings, votes etc. But it’s not the most important factor as far as who can beat who. I can give you dozens of examples where that logic does not work.
Hurd is no doubt the top guy at 154. But let’s see how his career plays out over the next few years. As good as he is I don’t believe he will get to 30-0 with out a lost because of his style. Time tells everything.
Hey Bread. You recently answered a question about Douglas/Tyson and you threw a name out there that has always made me wonder “what if” - Razor Ruddock. At the time, if memory serves me correct, all the great heavyweights avoided this guy like a case of Syphilis. Tyson once paid him a couple million to let him fight someone else. Coming off his KO of Michael Dokes it seemed like Bowe, Holyfield, Lewis and Tyson all avoided him. Tyson eventually manned up and gave us a battle for the ages and a rematch that was lacking on Ruddock’s part. As we all know, Lewis “arrived” with his destruction of Ruddock which to me was the result of a freak power shot to the top of Razor’s head- in no way meant to diminish Lewis who went on to a HOF career. It’s like those one or two bombs from Lennox completely changed the trajectory of Ruddock’s career. Your thoughts on this guy, and how he was regarded at the time. Love reading your insights, as I always come away feeling I’ve learned something about the sport. Great stuff.
Son of a Breadman/ NJ
Bread’s Response: It’s very important to know how highly a fighter was regarded at a certain time. Often times after a lost the media discredits the fighter but they weren’t saying those things BEFORE the lost. Razor Ruddock was more highly regarded than any active heavyweight today who is a non champion today before his lost to Mike Tyson.
He decapitation of Michael Dokes was outright scary. Many people thought Tyson was afraid of him and that he would do the same thing to Tyson.
Those who discredit Tyson’s career always make Ruddock out to be a BUM because they don’t want to give Tyson credit. But Tyson was the 1st elite heavyweight to give Ruddock a shot. Ruddock was a murderous puncher with his left hook. That SMASH shot he threw was a doozy. You always get extra credit for being the 1st to fight a boogeyman. Tyson was the 1st to fight Ruddock.
I thought Ruddock was a real guy. I think Tyson ruined him and I don’t like to use that word. But fighting Tyson back to back like that for 19 rounds in a 3 month span messed him up and he was never the same. I think they ruined each other. Look at Tyson and Ruddock both and after their 2nd fight neither guy had the same pep in their step.
Analyzing him…..Ruddock was a little bit of a one trick pony. He only looked for that one hybrid hook uppercut. But he had heart for days, he was a good size and he could really punch. I thought he was a notch below the elite of his day like sort of where Dillian Whyte is now.
What up Bread. What do you think about the PAC Vs Broner match up? I think if Broner opens up he may get stopped. I’ve noticed when Broner fights a dangerous opponent he tends to kinda shut down offensively. If he does that I say pac ud. Id like to hear your thoughts on this one. Hope all is well with you and the family.
Bread’s Response: When the fight was 1st announced I thought Pac would win easy. I still favor Pac but I don’t think it will be a blow out, Because Broner has mastered that hands up defense where he throws just enough punches to keep his opponent honest, not nearly enough to win but enough not to get stopped. I don’t think Pac has the gas pedal to make Broner open up to get the stoppage.
Broner will try to land a sneaky hook and a nice uppercut and I think it will keep Pac honest. Broner is talented but he’s not the “boxer” Pac is. I think this is where Pac separates himself. He’s just a better boxer with a higher IQ and a quicker mind. Broner does not process as well as Pac so often times he will be a step behind in exchanges.
So let’s say 115-113 or 116-112 Pac. Expect a tinge of controversy.
The 154 division may be one of the most competitive divisions no one talks about. You can come up with a different top 10 depending on the day. And I wanted to ask you about one of the potential stars that will finally get his big shot in March, Brian Castano. Have you watched any of him? If so, what do you think? Am I crazy for liking his chances against Lara? I feel like Lara who has been a proud champion for years took quite a bit punishment against Hurd who is so much physically stronger than him and add that with his age it becomes a terrible combination. And if Castano wins as I predict, I believe he will be a nice TV US fighter for the near future. You can then put him in the mix against any of the other 154 pounders. You don't beat Soro unless you are a MAN, and he is just that. I don't even need to mention what he did before turning pro as he has wins over the likes of Errol Spence and Sergei Derevyanchenko.
Bread’s Response: Brian Castano is a real guy. I am very impressed Erislandy Lara is going straight to Castano. He’s a GUN for that. Castano has one of the more impressive amateur resumes around. That tells me he can think fast and get his hands off.
I know many boxing sharps who think Castano will upset Lara and win the fight. I actually know more people who are picking Castano that are picking Lara. I really respect Lara and I haven’t turned on him yet. I thought he showed the guts of a burglar vs Jarrett Hurd. He stood in there with a killer and he gave out as much as he took.
Everyone keeps saying how much of a beating Lara took but what about the beating Hurd took. They were beating on each other. I am not one of those people who says after every tough fight a fighter won’t be the same. Tough fights make you better often times. If mentally you compartmentalize what happened and you know how to take care of your body a tough fight is not as hard to come back from as some make it out to be.
It really depends on the fighter. From my perspective Lara looked like Lara to me vs Hurd. He was fast, he was smooth, and he fought a good fight. Lara is always like that. Let’s just look at his prime, he didn’t win the title until he was 30. He always had the style where he’s not too high or not too low. He never gives a flat performance and usually he’s not lights out except for maybe the Trout fight. Lara struggled with Angulo and Molina is his prime. He’s just a guy who is not over dominant but he is very consistent and talented.
So I don’t buy into the Lara slipped stuff. I think he still has plenty left in the gas tank. It’s tough for everybody vs elite competition. Castano looks to be elite. I think Lara has his work cut out for him and I don’t have a pick yet but I don’t think Castano washes him.
The only slippage I see in Lara is he seems a little complacent these days. If he’s sharp and assertive then Castano will have the fight of his life on his hands.
Michel Soro is very, very good. I was impressed that Castano beat Soro. But let’s remember Soro made a serious late push and almost won that fight. If Lara is motivated it’s the same type of fight. Without an official prediction I say this will be a close controversial type of decision. History tells us that Lara is usually in close fights with his better opponents, Hurd, Molina, Angulo and Canelo. Lara was robbed vs Paul Williams.
Lara is not tall but he has a huge length advantage vs Castano. Castano has a little Carlos Molina in his game who gave Lara fits. I think both guys match up well with one another. Castano seems strong but I think Lara is the better puncher for 1 shot. Lara has a better jab but Castano has a more active body rhythm and feet. Castano can out busy Lara on the inside. But Lara can control him from the outside with his jab and threat of left hand. As I break this fight down in my head I think the more motivated and focused guy will win. This is a very evenly matched fight. The purist love this contrast of styles. I know you’re taking Castanao but don’t count Lara out.
You recently posted in the previous mailbag that your top five trap setters were the below.
" Top 5 trap setter. Archie Moore. Joe Louis, Floyd Mayweather, Ray Robinson, Alexis Arguello."
I was wondering why Bernard Hopkins was not on that list. I was actually surprised you had Mayweather in there, instead of Hopkins. Reason I ask, is because I thought Hopkins had a whole second career after the Trinidad fight solely based on setting traps. He would move around the ring to the right hand side of his opponents who were right handed (to stay away from their power hand). He then would throw small slow jabs to keep them off balance and then he would sneak a right hand in and follow it up with a left to the body. He hit Kelly Pavlik with that all night and he knocked down Calzaghe with that same sneaky right hand moving to the right. Did you think that Mayweather was better at traps then Hopkins as a whole? Love the mailbag, big fan. Take care.
Bread’s Response: Bernard Hopkins didn’t make my list because I usually do list off the top of my head. I was asked top 5. Just because he didn’t make my top 5 doesn’t mean he wasn’t a great trap setter. There have been hundreds of thousands of fighters in the history of boxing. I was only asked for 5.
Hopkins was excellent and setting traps. But the guys I named I’ve watched extensively as I have Hopkins and they set their traps a little more proficient than Hopkins.
Speaking of Hopkins, he loved moving to his right I actually talked with him about it before at an airport. His boxing IQ is platinum level. He would walk guys to their right, feint them, drop lead right hands, grapple them then do it all over again. Rarely was it figured out.
Hopkins definitely is a great trap setter. He just didn’t make my top 5 off the top of my head.
Here is the link for the Chavez fight I mentioned.
Might seem pointless and you might wonder why I insist, but it's because I feel we judge him based on his whole career, the fact he's Chavez's son, the pot, the pink underwear. But you are able to analyze it regardless of the fan's hate or jokes, etc... I'm asking you to be in June or July 2012, after witnessing his rise from 2010 to 2012 and the evolution between the Zbik fight and the Lee fight. Listen to the commentators and at the time, their genuine beliefs and hopes in Chavez. Before he became a joke and tarnished the short career he finally managed to build. He beat and stopped a hot Lee with Stewart in his corner. His jab is lacking for a pressure fighter but what a consistency, chin, body puncher and physicality. That night, he wanted it. If only he could have kept training seriously (and with Roach) for the Martinez fight, 2012-2014 could have been very different.
Plus he was improving greatly between each fight so maybe he still had a margin. Regardless, on his Lee night, with one of the most impressive chin for a MW in my recent memory, I think he gives trouble (and can win) against most of the top MW from 2012 to 2018. It might feel like a joke to even mention him near GGG but the July 2012 Chavez vs the Prozka 2012 GGG makes a great fight.
Just rewatch if you can. Feels good to see Emmanuel so passionate too.
Bread’s Response: I see you are a big Chavez Jr. fan. I am not. I respect him but he never blew me away. He had a solid beard and that Lee performance was BIG time. But if you look close at his career he may have been a 1 hit wonder.
He struggled badly with Lucian Cuello. I studied that fight. He had a tough time with Billy Lyell. He should have never fought Sebastian Zbik for the title. If you’re a fan of his you have to be objective. How did he get to fight for the WBC title when Sergio Martinez was the WBC champion? That was bizarre and you know it. I still don’t know if Chavez really beat Zbik.
After he beat Zbik he won a showcase defense vs Peter Manfredo and he looked solid. He struggled again vs Marco Antonio Rubio and then he gave his career best performance vs Andy Lee. I still don’t know how he beat Andy Lee but I give him full credit for it.
After the Lee fight he lost 11 rounds to Sergio Martinez in a 12 round fight. And because he finished strong they still kept the narrative alive he was improving. He had to fight Brian Vera twice in order to beat him cleanly once. He hasn’t looked good in one fight since. And if you watch his fights he never really set the world on fire. He looked good vs Lee and Manfredo and in every other fight he was what he was. A big strong kid, with a good chin, who fought in spurts and had a machine behind him.
Chavez Jr. always had favorable match making. And with that type of matchmaking you need to set the world on fire. Just think about it. He spent the meat of his career from 154-168 and he’s never fought a good black fighter. I’m not talking about a D level guy as a prospect but I’m talking about a solid top 10-15 type of guy. In divisions where black athletic fighters are prevalent, Chavez Jr. didn’t have to face one after he rose to contender status.
Other Mexican stand outs above 135lbs fight plenty of black fighters because their brain trust know they can handle it. Often times HOW a fighter gets matched tells you what their teams REALLY think of him. You can say what you want about Canelo and Mikey Garcia but they fight the elite black fighters in their weight divisions. I’m not turning this into a RACE thing but you asked me about Chavez Jr. I’m just telling you he was so taken care of and protected that if other fighters would have had his resourceful matchmaking they would have had much better careers. He only produced two good performance once he reached contender status and he was basically favorably matched in every single fight for the exception of Canelo and Martinez. And in those fights he lost 23 of 24 rounds.
I’m not coming down on the kid. I respect all fighters. I love his father and I watch his father weekly. But Chavez Jr was an underachieving fighter who got the world handed to him with every opportunity you could ask for and he still couldn’t produce much.
I don’t see the elite peak you see. I see him getting hot vs Andy Lee. He never looked that good before or after that. If he would have fought GGG in 2012 or 2013 he would have gotten brain damage. GGG was at his apex in 2012 that’s why no one went near him. Chavez’s chin would have been his down fall.
I think most of the top guys from 2012-18 would beat him. Canelo already outclassed him. GGG would have. Charlo is too active with his jab. Danny Jacobs is too fast. Billy Joe Saunders is too fast. Demetrius Andrade is too fast. He may have had a decent chance vs Peter Quillin and David Lemiuex. Those are competitive fights if you match him against the best middleweights of the last 6 years but I’m not sure he wins those two either.
I apologize I know you’re a fan of his but that’s just what I see in Chavez Jr.
What is your official pick on the Uzi vs Plant fight? I’ve seen the lines change. I don’t know if it had to do with your tweet about Plant but everyone seems to be on the Plant bandwagon now. The one thing that worries me about Plant is he seems to lack toughness. He never goes for the kill as Shawn Porter pointed out on the PBC special. Do you think this will play a factor in the fight?
Bread’s Response: You know I am very upset that the lines have changed so much. Lines are set for a reason and I saw everyone bite on the Shane Mosley vs Floyd Mayweather line because it was so high and they thought they had value in Mosley. And Floyd went out and dominated him just like the original line said he would. Everyone being on Plant now is really bothering me because Uzi opened pretty big.
The line is almost even at this moment and those little old men in Vegas are right 80% of the time.
Despite that, I’m going to pick Plant by a 115-113 decision. I think he’s going to box, peck and poke and use his charisma to win. I am worried about his physical toughness because he doesn’t go after fighters. But I think that serves him well in this fight. I don’t look at it as a flaw just yet. The only way it’s a flaw is if it cost him a fight. IF Plant is down on the scorecards and he doesn’t show killer instinct then it’s a flaw. But as of now let’s assume he plays it safe because he can. He’s not a risky stock investor he buys CDs and he takes the for sure interest rates.
A bigger concern for me is not his killer instinct however. It’s his match making progression. I’m picking him to win but I wish he had about 3 more fights, progressively tougher up until this point. Plant is only 17-0 and the best fighter he has faced was Porky Medina. I would have liked to see him vs another undefeated prospect, then maybe a Sakio Bika type and a tough truth test like sort of a Denis Douglin who gave Benavidez some quality rounds.
Plant has been off 11 months and he never got to settle in to his contender status. He beat Medina and boom he’s fights the Uzi. If you look at his resume closely he has quality prospect wins but nothing really as a contender except the Medina fight. His 2nd best win may be Tyrone Brunson who is a junior middleweight. So there is concern….
Objectively I love Plant’s educated lead hand. I love his mature demeanor. I love his legs. My gut tells me he’s primed to be a star. But Plant will have to overcome about 2 steps of matchmaking he didn’t get to overcome the Uzi. I think he can do it. But expect DRAMA from rounds 9-12. This will be interesting.
I've always been curious to why people keep saying Mikey Garcia is going up two weight classes when he just won the 140 pound title in 2018 and two of his last three fights have been at 140. Sure his last fight was at 135, but he's fought at 140 more than 135 since returning from his 2.5 year hiatus. That leads me to my next point of maybe people are making too much of the weight and underestimating his chances in the Spence fight. If you think about it, people would say DSG or Porter vs Spence are good fights right? But I bet Mikey would be the favorite to beat DSG and close to even odds if not the favorite to beat Porter. Unless one is in the opinion of Spence just being levels above the likes of Porter/DSG, something isn't adding up here.
Personally? I think he is live in this fight and will give it a good go. But Spence isn't just going to beat him because he is so much bigger and he will bully Mikey. In fact, Spence doesn't really bully fighters like that. He uses his technical skills to set punches up and is one of the best, if not the best fighter at cutting the ring at this moment. His killer jab is also among the best int he game. So if he wins, and he is the odds on favorite to do so, it will have some to do with his size, but also have a lot to do with just how good he is and his total skill set. If he was mainly just good because of his size, then that would mean if he went up to 154 plenty of fighters would be the favorite over him, right? Wrong! MAYBE Hurd is the favorite over him and Lara gets even odds, but he would be the favorite over damn near everyone even at that weight class. Eventually he may end up being the MW champion, and it damn sure won't just be because of his size. What do you think?
Bread’s Response: You make some solid points. Mikey won a real title at 140 against a real fighter in Sergey Lipinets. So technically he’s only moving up 1 weight division and not 2. But it just seems that his frame and fleshy physique has reached it’s max at 140. Mikey appears to be sort of a tweener between 135-140. He didn’t stop Broner, Lpinets or Easter although he was dominant. So the train of thought is beating the best and most physical welterweight available to him is too much. You’re talking about exact weights but there is more to it, frame, bone density and physicality.
I also think he’s live in the fight. But I can’t pick him to win. Here is where we disagree. Spence does bully his opponents. He also beats them with skill and technical ability. Spence is the complete package. His physical, he has a serious workrate, he’s the best body puncher in the game, he uses a jab, he does not get tired and he’s ox strong. I think Spence’s body punching and Garcia’s fragile face will be the difference in this fight late. Mikey’s nose always looks damaged in my opinion. And Spence never lets up to the body. The only fighter I have ever seen that seems to like it to the body is Muhammad Ali. No one else does. That’s going to be tough on Mikey as the fight progresses.
You make a great point about Mikey vs DSG and Porter. I was actually told by a Vegas oddsmaker that Mikey is making a mistake fighting Spence because he would outbox Danny Garcia and he would beat Shawn Porter. I asked what would the lines be and he said even money vs Porter and 2 to 1 over DSG. I thought to myself wow Mikey is a GUN. He could have had both of those fights but he took on the perceived tougher fighter.
I think Spence would be the favorite over everybody at 154 but that’s perception and perception is not always reality. Spence would have his work cut out for him at 154 and he wouldn’t have problems getting fights. The welterweights don’t come out and say it but there is an unspoken gesture that he’s simply too strong for them. Only Terence Crawford and Mikey Garcia say otherwise. I don’t think that would be the case at 154. But we have to see to find out for sure.
I can’t wait for Spence vs Garcia. It’s a superfight in my opinion.
Last week you said that character has a huge affect (70%) on a fighter’s success. Can you go a bit deeper and let us know what variables you use to assess a fighter’s character and how much do you judge character inside of the ring versus outside of the ring?
Everyone I talk to gives Broner a very slim chance to win. What Are Adrien Broner’s keys to Victory?
Bread’s Response: The reason people don’t give Broner much of chance is because of his character. He’s the younger, bigger man and he’s talented. But his character inhibits him.
Broner’s keys to victory is his jab. Broner has to use a jab to disrupt Manny. That will lead to him turning Manny and countering him but first thing first. Establish the jab.
From a character aspect Broner has to try to win at all times. He can’t shell up and not get stopped and for a moral victory.
When I speak of character I’m not just talking about courage/heart. There are so many different aspects of character that don’t get associated with character.
If a fighter runs alone does he time his miles and push himself or does he run at a snails pace? Does he eat a snack late at night then lie to his coaches about not losing 1lb from the previous day despite sparring 10 rounds.
I know a fighter who I won’t name that when they’re hurt or dropped in a fight. They get up and enhance a wobble just to get the ref to stop it.
There are fighters who always have some sort of controversy surrounding their fights. DQ, Low blows, untimely stoppages. They create a confusing energy just to get out of fights.
There are levels to character. I know fighters who have plenty of heart but they panic under pressure. They try harder but they don’t try smarter. They go to balls to the walls instead of being smart. That’s also a lack of character it’s just not a lack of heart.
Then you have fighters who are never in line for big competitive fights. They are always taking a certain level of fights that they know they will win. They stay inactive and ACT like they want challenges, or they keep resigning with promoters who don’t have killers in their division. Look closely.
Then you have fighters with close to impeccable character. Andre Ward gives himself the best chance to win inside and outside of the ring. No matter the adversity he fights through it to the best of his ability. He trains like and SOB and leaves no stone unturned. When you have character like his it doesn’t guarantee you retire undefeated but you give yourself the best chance to do so. Also look at Badou Jack. He doesn’t have Ward’s ability but look at the career he’s earned for himself. Jack is as high as a character guy that you will see.
Now look at a guy like Tyson Fury. Fury has lots of problems with drugs, mental health issues and gluttony. But Fury has high in the ring character. He doesn’t get rattled under adversity. He fights to his strong points which is too box and not slug. He mocks his opponents to get them to fight mad so he can take advantage of their rage. Fury overcomes out of the ring bad habits with serious in the ring character.
I could write about this all day. There is not enough room. But I will end it with this. I won’t put anybody and kill them for poor character. But look at some of the examples I gave you then apply them to fighters that fall into the category.
Over the last 10 years here are the HIGHEST character fighters I have observed at the top level: Andre Ward, Carl Froch, Tyson Fury, Deontay Wilder, Olli Usyk, Badou Jack, GGG, Floyd Mayweather, Manny Pacquiao, Roman Gonzalez, SRR, Juan Estrada, Tim Bradley, Nonito Donaire, Terence Crawford, Vasyl Lomachenko, Tevin Farmer and Jorge Linares.
I’m sure I have missed a few. But those fighters off the top of my head displayed high character by either doing the right thing in a boxing ring under adversity, taking fights they didn’t have to take, training properly consistently and overcoming a bad loss and reaching higher levels.
Happy new year to you and your fam.
With Adonis Stevenson existing the sport, whats your top 5 one handed dominant boxers in history?
3 names I can think of are
Vic Darchinyan - left hand
Deontay Wilder - right hand
and obviously Adnonis
there are a few names i can think of however they didnt rely on one hand as much as the 2 above and they are
Oscar - was left handed fighting orthodox, excellent jab and left hook
Ernie Shavers - huge right hand
Joe Frazier - one of the best left hooks i have seen
Tommy Morrison - like frazier, brilliant left hook
GK from OZ
Bread’s Response: Top 5 one handed fighters in history….Um…let’s see.
You do realize that at one point the rear power hand was not thrown often, so most of the best guys had educated lead hands with a few exceptions.
In no order Max Baer was completely right hand dominant. Tommy Loughran the great Philadelphia lightheavyweight was left lead hand dominant. Manny Pacquiao developed a right hook later in his career but he won his 1st three titles shooting a left hand over and over and beat great fighters doing it. Joe Frazier was left hand dominant. Frazier was a hooker and a hooker some more. I can’t think of one knockdown or knockout he scored with his right hand. Last I will say Andre Ward. Ward had a right shoulder problem and he did the brunt of his work with his lead left hand. In fact besides the last Kovalev fight I can’t think of anyone else he hurt or dropped with his right hand.
For the record I don’t like to call a fighter one handed. Some will take that as an insult and I don’t insult fighters. So let’s just call them one hand dominant.
Pac could easily have walked into the ibhof BEFORE his epic 135-147 run but if he adds 2 wins over either spence, garcia, crawford, loma or mayweather (all as 40 year old VADA tested underdog) to his ledger does he have a case for top 3 alltime behind SRR and Ali?.... even one of those scalps and he is top 10.
Bread’s Response: Some have already have Pac top 10 all time. I have well within the top 30 although I don’t have an official list. If Pac were to beat 2 of the guys you named at 40 on VADA geez I’m not sure if it puts him #3 all time but I wouldn’t argue it. I don’t think people realize how good Pac’s resume is. And I don’t look at resumes like most. But let’s look at Pac’s.
At 19 yrs old he beats Chatchai Sasakul 32-1 for the lineal flyweight title as a big underdog. He defends the title once then he gets kod by a body shot and moves up to 122lbs.
At junior featherweight no one did Pacman any favors. He took some tough non title fights just to earn a title shot. Two of the fights were against undefeated fighters in Seung- Kon Chae and Nedal Hussein. Then he takes another title shot on short notice vs Lehlo Ledwaba 33-1 and stops him. He defended that title 4 times most notably vs Jorge Julio who was a dam good fighter.
Then he moves up to 126lbs and takes on All time Great top# 3 P4P in Marco Antonio Barrera and stops him for the lineal featherweight crown. That’s 3 stoppages as an underdog in his 1st three title tries.
In his very next fight he tries to unify vs another HOF in Juan Manuel Marquez. I thought Manny won this fight especially in light of a judge admitting that he would have ruled the 1st round 10-6 instead of 10-7. Nevertheless Manny gets a draw.
He moves up again to 130lbs and loses a great fight to Erik Morales. This doesn’t bother him at all. He takes a rematch vs Morales and stops him. Then stops him again in the rubber match. In between those fights he beats solid Jorge Solis and Oscar Larios. Then he fights and beats Barrera and Marquez back to back again winning his 4th division title vs Marquez at 130. Let’s remember he skipped 115 and 118.
Next he moves up to 135 and defeats David Diaz to win his 5th division. At this point we start to realize we are looking at something different. He fights a perfect fight vs Diaz and Diaz is no pushover.
He then skips junior welterweight and takes on Oscar de La Hoya. He fights a perfect fight again and now he seems to be at an all time apex. His eye ball test is off the charts. I hate that he gets flack for beating Oscar. Oscar called him out and was moving down to welterweight anyway. I always say that it was a fair trade off. Oscar was a junior middleweight calling out a lightweight. Where were they supposed to meet. Welterweight was more than fair. Oscar was the A side. He should have picked on a fighter his own size.
And let me tell you something. Oscar on his best day may not have beaten THAT Manny. Manny was on fire that night. That was one of the best performances I have ever seen.
Manny then moves down and kos Rick Hatton at 140lbs. Hatton is another HOF to go with Oscar, Barrera, Morales and Marquez. To go along with the slew of solid guys. That’s 6 titles and Manny is only 30.
In his very next fight he beats the great Miguel Cotto. Another HOF. The funny thing is people tried to call Cotto shot but Cotto went on to win the junior middleweight and middleweight titles years after Manny beat him. He was far from shot.
Manny then throws 1200 punches vs the capable Joshua Clottey. Then he fights the fight that lets me know he was the GUN of his era. He fights Margarito for a vacant title at junior middleweight. I know it was a catchweight fight but Margarito was a big welter I think the 150lbs favored him not Manny. Margarito rehydrated huge. But Manny got GUN status because he let Margarito wear 8oz gloves. No one talks about that. Margarito was allowed to wear small gloves and he was huge vs Manny.
After this fight Manny was still in his prime but not at his Apex. He lost a half of a step. He shuts out Shane Mosely and drops him, and he beats Marquez again. Then he gets robbed against another HOF in Tim Bradley. And gets kod by Marquez. You would think it’s over but it’s not.
He comes back and shuts out a real guy in Brandon Rios. Rios had 1 loss when he fought Manny and he was much younger. He couldn’t do anything with him. Manny then officially beats Tim Bradley for his 2nd title at 147. People forget Bradley will go to the HOF when he’s eligible.
Pacquiao beats another undefeated in his prime in Chris Algieri. For anyone who thinks Aligieri is easy ask Amir Khan if that’s so.
Manny then finally bangs it out with Floyd. He loses a clear competitive decision in my opinion. But I thought he hurt Floyd twice and accounted well for himself considering. I know he’s chronologically younger than Floyd, but he has many more fights and he was kod badly not too long before the fight.
Immediately after the Mayweather loss Manny shows his resiliency yet again and beats Tim Bradley more clearly than the previous fights.
Then Manny wins the welterweight title for the 3rd time vs Jesse Vargas who was coming off his best career win. Manny then loses a controversial decision to Jeff Horn I thought he won the fight…..but that didn’t bother him at all. He takes on Lucas Matthysse and wins the welterweight title for a 4th time.
Manny is a serious dude. As I typed out his resume I think you have an argument. If Manny were to beat Mikey Garcia, Terence Crawford, Errol Spence or Vasyl Lomachenko it would be hard to keep him out of the top 5. Not sure about top 3 but he would pass some great fighters. My goodness I don’t think he can do it but I do know one thing. He’s crazy enough to try it.
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