The latest Daily Bread Mailbag is here and, this week, the one and only Stephen "Breadman" Edwards looks ahead to Gervonta Davis-Frank Martin, talks about the recent Tyson Fury headlines, explores an interesting three-way historical tournament – Monzon, Calzaghe and Toney – and much more.

How does Frank Martin defeat Gervonta Davis? I respect Martin but I don’t know his path to victory in this fight.

Bread’s Response: Tank has EARNED the right to be the favorite in THIS fight. But anyone can lose. And I mean ANYONE! 

If Martin elevates his game to a level we haven’t seen him do and if Tank doesn’t adjust, then Martin can win. Sometimes you guys get too caught up in the Xs & Os so I won't break it down like that. I get that your eyes tell you that Tank is the superior fighter. He’s faster, quicker, he seems to hit harder, we have seen more of him etc etc. And those things matter but that’s not the END ALL. I’m not picking Frank Martin but I do NOT think he’s over his HEAD. Here is why….

Because I don’t know WHAT his ceiling is. Martin is 29 but he may have more to his game that we have seen. What I do know is Frank has a CLUTCH gene. Against Michel Rivera in what was thought to be a 50/50 transition fight. Martin put on a clinic and what was even more impressive, Rivera has PEDs in his system. Then in his next fight I thought Martin was getting outboxed and he was behind on the cards. And Martin stepped on the gas and got a 12 rd knockdown to secure his victory. Again I’m not picking against Tank. I think Tank is special. But I don’t ever look at a fighter and say that he can’t lose. 

Quick Story…In early 2002 I had a BIG fight party. I had just bought a new house, my first house and I wanted to have some friends over to celebrate. I was always a big boxing fan so I picked a weekend to have a party (fight party). That weekend Shane Mosley who was 38-0 with 35 kos was fighting Vernon Forrest, another undefeated fighter, but nowhere near as celebrated as Mosley. At that time I thought to myself that Mosley couldn’t lose. I was SO confident that even after he was knocked down bad, I was taking bets that Mosley would STILL win. Obviously Mosley lost the fight and I lost my money. I wasn’t mad at myself for believing in Mosley. He was a great fighter. But I was mad at myself for not remembering a saying my Grand Pop had told me. “There has never been a HORSE that has never been rode. And there has never been a rider that has never been throwed.” 

Forrest vs Mosley gave me a harsh reminder that I never forgot again. ALL AROUND fighters like Forrest, Hopkins. Holyfield and Barrera don’t show up as aesthetically pleasing as Mosley, Tito, Tyson and Prince Naseem. If you compare the offensively dynamic fighter side by side to the all around fighter, the offensively dynamic fighter will always get more backing in terms of who the public thinks is better. But when the styles meet in the ring, the All Around fighter has won this share of match ups. The issue is we don’t know if Martin is on Forrest, Hopkins, Holyfield or Barrera’s level. 

In my mind I believe Tank is special. But I don’t know exactly what Martin is. So he’s the wild card. If Martin raises his game, then he can neutralize some of Tank’s weapons. If Martin is what we saw in his last fight, then Tank wins going away. I’m very intrigued with this fight because my hunch is both fighters bring out the best in each other and they both raise their games.

Hey Bread, really enjoyed your thoughts on Deontay Wilder HOF status. Thanks for letting us know that Wilder was a big advocate for CLEAN Boxing and backed it up with action. You know what I'm thinking after reading that and knowing you'd have your facts straight that maybe he should be HOF because being a good fighter alone is one thing but being brave enough to push clean boxing in a very murky boxing world moves the needle for me to GREAT. We have seen too many examples of guys getting a slap on the wrist for PED use and still considered HOF, it doesn't seem to affect their status? Am I wrong on that point? Greatness is more than what you do in the ring, I know that's the main factor but do you consider out of ring factors in your HOF appraisal? Kind regards Sean in Ireland 

Bread’s Response: It’s important to look at the full scope of one’s career when considering the HOF. Wilder was definitely an advocate for clean boxing. More so than any other heavyweight of this era. Considering many top 10 Ring Rated fighters tested positive at different points of Wilder’s run..... That’s a big deal and not something to overlook, especially when Wilder is getting criticism for his late career slide. 

Some are attributing it to a step up in competition. And that could be true. But to overlook that Wilder is 38 and it’s reasonable for a CLEAN 38 yr old fighter to slip, especially after back to back brutal KOs, it’s just misguided and not fair to Wilder. 

If Wilder was elected to the HOF, I would not be upset one bit. If he didn’t go in, I also wouldn’t be upset. In my honest opinion, he’s a borderline case and it’s a very close call. Again it will depend on the year he’s eligible and who’s on the ballot that year. If it comes a time where he’s NOT on the ballot at all. That will upset me because he at least deserves consideration. Speaking of the HOF. Marlon Starling is NOT on the ballot. I’m not saying Starling is a HOF lock. But he deserves to be on the ballot. He’s better than some guys who were elected and to not be on the ballot is a travesty. 

Hey Breadman! Really have been enjoying reading your material. It’s neutral, accurate and passionate all at the same time. I wanted to ask you: what up-and- coming prospects in the sport catch your attention and make you say, “Hey, keep your eye on this guy, I think he’s going to the top!”

There are guys like Moses Itauma, Ben Whittaker, Curmel Moton, Richard Torres Jr, etc who seem promising and exciting to follow. Who are some of the names that catch your attention right now that in a few years you might be able to say, “I told you to keep your eye on this boy and that he was going places! ”Thanks brother! Sincerely, Alex

Bread’s Response: One of my best recent calls was Josh Taylor. Taylor is from Scotland so he wasn’t known much in the US. I saw him and I thought to myself this guy will be world champion and a P4P fighter. He was. Taylor is excellent but he wasn’t a phenom or a heavily promoted guy at the time…. I also called a young Shane Mosley, Marco Antonio Barrera and Julian “Jrock”Williams. 

Recently I told everyone who would listen that Scooter Fulton and Jaron Ennis would be world champions out of Philly. My next PHILLY calls are Romuel “Cuco” Cruz and Erron Peterson. My next overall calls are harder because I like to see kids in the gym when they don’t know anyone is looking. But right now I like Amari Jones a MW who trains out of Vegas. This kid is nice. He’s strong, he’s athletic. He’s a hard worker. He can switch hit. He has a real shot at 160 and 168 to be world champion. Some will call me crazy but I’m also higher on Richard Torres Jr. than most. I know he doesn’t look the part. I’m not saying he’s a guaranteed world champion. But what I will say is I’m not dismissive of his chances. He’s a fighter I want to see more of so I can assess properly. But Torres has something on most of the heavyweights and if he’s durable he can make some noise. That something is a GAS TANK. Torres is physically fit. Most heavyweights are lazy. Torres is NOT. Determination, grit and work ethic are just as important as size. Torres has determination, grit and work ethic....

You were spot on with your picks over the last few weeks. I cleaned up on Usyk and Cobbs. In what next upcoming big fight are you leaning hard on? By the way I know you don’t like to talk about your fighters but Kyrone Davis is a live dog against Elijah Garcia. 

Bread’s Response: You’re right I don’t like talking about my fighters. But Kyrone is going to FIGHT. I will leave it at that and you can take that for whatever it’s worth. 

My next BIG picks are David Benavidez and Bam Rodriguez. I like them both BIG in their next fights. 

Great call on the Caitlin Clark situation. Now she’s being left off of  the Team USA Olympic squad. Do you feel she was slighted, especially considering Diana Taurosi is 41 years old and has played on like 5 or 6 teams. If you were advising Clark what would you tell her.

Bread’s Response: You know something, I think Clark not being on the team can be a good thing for her. She can get to relax this summer. Work on her game and just reboot after her first pro season. As for the team itself, let’s see what their ratings are and how much public support they get. That’s a real thing. My feelings on this are neutral and numb. I can see a case where Clark makes the team. She’s the best shooter I’ve ever seen in women’s basketball. And in international competition shooting is important. I can see cases where other top players were also left off and they are more accomplished pros and Clark can’t skip the line. I also agree that some of the picks for the team are not in their prime anymore and there are younger, more deserved players who could’ve made the team.

So I wouldn't advise Clark to do anything. Besides, it's not up to her if she makes the Olympic Team or not. But here is what I will say. The WNBA certainly didn't help itself by leaving her OFF the team. She has box office appeal and a large following. And if the goal is to become more popular and earn higher wages, you don't leave the most popular player and best shooter off the team. I also believe that Angel Reese should have made the team to balance out any favoritism. Reese is an excellent floor player and post defender. Clark is a great passer and great shooter. If we are being honest, the US team would not be hurt one bit by including these women on the TEAM. 

Bread, you’re killing the whole Ryan Garcia PED scandal. You haven’t condemned Garcia just yet but I know exactly where you are on this. You wait patiently and Garcia keeps doping Garcia things. He was just arrested for vandalism. The media who back Garcia are outright maggots. They’re targeting everyone except the fighter who tested positive, came in over 3lbs heavy and says or does some of the oddest things we have ever seen a professional fighter do. They back him because they want access to him. So they’re trading in their integrity for money. My question to you is what do you think Garcia’s punishment will be from the NYSAC and do you think other commissions will follow suit and respect what their ruling is?

Bread’s Response: Because this case is so high profile I think the NYSAC is taking their time. They want to get this right and they don’t want to rush to judgement. I don’t know what their ruling will be and I don’t want to guess. I’m sure there are things in the discovery that I don’t know. And when someone with money lawyers up, it makes things go slower because by chance if you get it wrong, you can be sued. So I’m waiting in curiosity just like everyone else.

I do think that all of the US state commissions will abide by whatever the NYSAC commission rules.

Dear Breadman, What I mean by lining up is talking about potential, lucrative fight before a fight that is upcoming. Fury's team (and not only, since His Excellency is no part of the team I hope) talking a lot about a Joshua bout was a good example and there are many more. Who are they, the talkers, trying to sway? Judges/a referee? These are ultimately, those who count. A little digression here. I love the fact that Joshua-Wilder,  and even Joshua-Fury, fights are no longer as big as they used to be  before Usyk took over. The latter is still big (but not mega great), the former of little interest. I hope that match-makers and those responsible for such politics will learn the lesson – timing is everything, not only in the ring. Let's have a look at Usyk vs Fury: round 1) decisive for Usyk 2) even greater for Usyk 3) still for Usyk, Fury just losing it less, 4) decisive for Fury 5) dominant for Fury 6) decisive for Fury 7) clear for Usyk (those, who noted the shift for Fury in round 4 must give it to Usyk, let alone those who undeservedly gave round 3 to Fury)  8) decisive for Usyk ROUND 9) 10-8 for Usyk;  in reality it was a 10-7 round: Usyk clearly ahead before Fury hurt 1 point,  the count 1 point, beating Fury around the ring, who was out on his feet and saved by the referee.

I must say, I scored it 10-8 in error since, as for any human being, time is a limiting factor, then you find out, when you have time to analyze.Fury was supported/prevented from falling by ropes 6 times; okay 1st time it was not so obvious, but it was obvious all other times and the ref stepped in when he was about to be executed.  

I thought, for a split second, he was stopping the fight. The ref did not even bother to check his balance with side stepping etc. Now, if you compare it with recent fights: Zhang-Wilder,  Sheeraz-Williams and, most of all, same card Cacace-Cordina, Tyson (Fury) should have been legitimately TKOd. I am far from arguing, there was a premeditation on part of the referee, but it is evident it got in his unconscious mind and he was favoring Fury (and/or the fight going to the distance). Round 10) dominant for Usyk, Fury slowly recovering 11) close round still slightly for Usyk (more landed and more significant punches -  see end of the round), but the issue is it did not look bad for Fury either, so relativity comes here. 12) clearly for Usyk (in the ring) yet close.

It also needs to be added that Usyk pressed the action for the vast majority of the fight, and at ring generalship he was well ahead. Now, let's see the official scores... Well, no comments anymore....Until the next time. All the best for your lot of boxing enthusiasts,


Bread’s Response: You make great points about the scoring and the referee. No need to reiterate any of that. However, I like your point about people mentioning upcoming fights but I don’t know if it’s on purpose to influence the officials. It’s just how boxing is, nevertheless it can have an impact.

I admit although I picked Usyk, I thought to myself that Usyk will have to do MORE because of the looming Fury vs Joshua fight. But it’s just one of those things. There will always be a BIG fight on the horizon. Although I didn’t like the referee’s decision to call the knockdown WHEN he did, I like that Usyk still won because he earned it. It’s kind of what makes Usyk so special. That he overcame. It’s why I rate Terence Crawford so highly because he also has overcome the SYSTEM of boxing. Those that know how hard it is behind the scenes, especially coming in on the B side in big fights, know how impressive it is for Usyk to be where he’s at. And for Crawford to be where he’s at. It actually gets taken for granted but I don’t. 

Boxing is a game of inches. And small things being stacked against you, can sway the outcome of fights. Imagine if Fury came back after the knockdown and won? That call would be a bigger deal, similar to the call to allow Fury to continue fighting after he was dropped in the 12th round by Wilder in their 1st fight. #thelittlethings

Breadman, 1. When my kids have a hard time with something, I like to say to them, "Make like Jake LaMotta and roll with the punches". Is that exceptionally corny? Absolutely. Do they get it? They don't. Still, makes this Dad laugh a little on the inside. Question: who would you replace Jake LaMotta with in the question? I imagine James Toney would be a good possibility.

  1. Round robin tournament, each man on his best day (and with weight negotiated as the best balance between contestants): Carlos Monzon, James Toney, Joe Calzaghe. Three points for a win, one for a tie. Who do you have coming out on top? It's an interesting mix of styles: Monzon the somewhat robotic looking fighter who doesn't appear fast, but is accurate, heavy handed, and comes downhill on you; Toney the slick stylist who can be outworked at times but at the same time is setting you up for deadly counters; and Calzaghe, the Energizer Bunny who's always in your mug and doesn't necessarily appear to be a killer, but takes you out with death by a thousand paper cuts.
  2. I'm reading Mike Silver's "The Arc of Boxing" right now - good read. One point he makes is you get better at boxing by boxing: higher activity builds your skills. There are plenty of reasons for why guys don't fight nearly as often nowadays as in the past, but if you could pick a boxer's ideal fight frequency (balancing safety and skill building), what would you go with? Plenty of things to consider (hard 12 round fights versus first round knockouts, past history, etc), just looking for your general feedback. I'm guessing 4-6 fights per year.

Thank you for the mailbag - I look forward to it every week.


Bread’s Response: 1. When I use a saying like your Jake LaMotta one, I tell my kids to google it, so they can understand why I say certain things.

  1. This is a tough tournament to pick. I really can’t call the fights. Many think Calzaghe is all wrong for Toney. But I can’t get out of my head, how sharply Toney countered Michael Nunn in 1991. Toney was NOT lazy in THAT fight. And if you say best day for best day, I have to assume THAT Toney shows up. Calzaghe is a great fighter but he’s not NEAT with his attack. Toney would counter him for sure. I also think Nunn and Calazghe’s defense are on a similar level. I can see either man winning.

Monzon is subtle and he doesn’t appear to be as good as he is. But then you look up and see that he does what he does vs EVERYBODY. I think Monzon beats Calzaghe. I don’t know if he beats Toney. My guess is Monzon or Toney win the tournament. And this is coming from a huge Calzaghe fan.

  1. Let’s assume we aren’t fast tracking an amateur Gold Medalist who has 200 amateur fights. So I would say in the fighter’s 1st year as a pro, he’s fighting 4 round fights. I would say 6 fights, the 1st year as a pro. A fight ever other month. During this time he will go from 4 rounders to 6 rounders.

The 2nd year as a pro he’s firmly in 6 rounders. I would say 5 fights. Now he’s ascending towards 8 round fights. He’s now 11-0. I would say 4 fights per year. 

As a 3rd year pro, he’s now 15-0. That’s exactly where you want to be going into 10 round fights. Another 4 fights as his 4th year as a pro is ideal and he’s now he’s up to 19-0 as a 4 year pro. Stay at 4 fights per year as he searches for a title shot. Hopefully he gets an eliminator to get a 12 round fight in and as a 5th year pro he’s ready for a title shot.

If he wins the title, 3-4 fights per year is ideal. 2 fights per year is this era’s status quo. That’s not terrible and many great fighters settled in on this schedule. At a certain point fighters slow down and more importantly they want to ENJOY their money. But my issue with 2 fights per year is the fighters aren’t fighting every 6 months. They’re fighting every 9 months or so. So if an injury or cancellation occurs, then a fighter won’t fight for a year or so. That’s the issue with 2x per year if it's not an every 6 month schedule. 

The other thing that fighters don’t realize is if you fight 3 or 4 times per year at the top level, you won’t even have to have long camps. There will be less wear and tear on your body and better performances because you won’t have to crash train, meaning squeeze everything into a camp after a long layoff. Your conditioning will be stacked and it will transfer from camp to camp. That’s why the best fighters of this era, STAY in the gym if they don’t have in the ring activity.

I think Tyson Fury is a disgrace after seeing the video of him drunk at a club. He’s not worthy of being a heavyweight champion. What are your thoughts on fighter’s drinking and partying?

Bread’s Response: I think you’re being too harsh on Tyson Fury. Why do you care if he drinks alcohol? Why does drinking alcohol make him a disgrace? I have a newsflash for you. Most fighters drink alcohol, they just don’t do it publicly because if they lose, someone will say, “It’s from the drinking.” Nevertheless just because they do it in private, it doesn’t mean they’re not doing it. Do you honestly think Tyson Fury is the only heavyweight champion in history who drinks alcohol? I mean seriously you can’t believe that.

Fury has earned his fair share of criticism in the past. But him being drunk in public is NO BIG DEAL to me. It may be counterproductive to being a pro fighter. I wholeheartedly agree with that. But that’s on Tyson Fury if he thinks he can perform as an elite fighter while getting drunk. It shouldn’t be offensive to anyone else.  

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