By Stephen "Breadman" Edwards

The Daily Bread Mailbag returns with Stephen “Breadman” Edwards giving his thoughts on Mikey Garcia’s many accomplishments, whether Jake Paul could have beaten the Kevin McBride who fought Mike Tyson, William Zepeda’s performance against Maxi Hughes and Zepeda’s future and much more.

You stated: But I recognize Mike Tyson’s 57. I recognize he was stopped by Kevin McBride about 20 years ago and Jake Paul could probably beat the best version of McBride. I suspect that if Tyson loses badly to Paul that this would be the one time he won’t be forgiven. I suspect because of the battle of Traditional Boxers vs Others that Tyson would receive brutal criticism if Jake Paul stops him. I don’t know Mike, but I hope he’s taking this fight seriously. 

My response: Absolutely ridiculous. On what basis is Jake Paul better than the 2005 Kevin Mcbride???? McBride was 6 foot 6 and 271lbs, far bigger than the 6 foot 199 lb paul. He was a former Olympian on the Irish national team and had a 33-4 record prior to the Tyson fight, compared to Paul's record of 9-1 against primarily older retired mma fighters.Paul did not KO mma fighters nate Diaz, Anderson silva. His knockouts of mma fighters came against those with limited boxing experience.In fact, Jake paul has ZERO wins against anyone currently rated better than 295th in the boxrec rankings at light heavyweight, cruiserweight or heavyweight. Andre August 295th, Ryan Bourland 345th. His closest was the loss to tommy fury who is currently ranked 104th at cruiserweight

Bread’s Response: So you’re either stupid or one of Kevin McBride’s family members. The crazy part is you’re getting upset over nothing. I didn’t insult McBride one bit. But since you want to go there. Let’s go…

First off McBride deserves full credit for his win over Tyson. It’s not on McBride who was brought in to get busted up, that Tyson was past his prime and not mentally there. McBride did his job. But let’s not act like if McBride were fighting today, he isn’t the type of fighter that Paul would hand pick. 

McBride was stopped by a fighter named Louis Moncao who was 4-6 at the time, yes 4 wins and 6 losses. He was also 5’11 and 215lbs, similar to guess who, Jake Paul. 

He was also stopped by a fighter named Michael Murray who was 6’1. But get this, Murray was on a seven fight losing streak before he kod McBride and then he went on a 10 fight losing streak to close out his career after he kod McBride. Murray was 15-16 when he stopped McBride. 

After this, McBride was decisioned by a fighter named Zack Page who was 205lbs and get this, 20-29. I don’t like to highlight a fighter’s failures, this is a tough business and everyone is not born with elite talent. But you challenge my assertion that Paul could “probably” beat McBride. I didn’t even say for certain. I said probably which is fair and reasonable considering Paul is very fit, gets to handpick his opponents and he knows when he’s going to fight so he’s the more prepared fighter usually. Whereas a fighter like McBride comes in on the B side, is big and sluggish already, often times comes in and “just doesn’t have it”. 

If the fighters who beat McBride, beat him, why is it unreasonable to think that Jake Paul could? Before you write in do some research and learn some respect. I stand on what I said. Jake Paul could probably beat the best version of McBride.

Hey Breadman! 

Longtime reader here, first time writing in. My question is what are your thoughts on Mikey Garcia’s career? How do you think he would fare against this current crop of lightweights? (Haney, Lopez, Tank , Ryan and Loma) I always thought he would fare well against Loma because of his solid fundamentals, I could see him landing a flush counter right similar too on Linares. I think he loses to Tank and Haney but I can see him outboxing Ryan and Teo, turn them and run them into that right hook. Thank you.

Bread’s Response: I always thought Mikey Garcia had the potential to be a great fighter and a HOF. There is a solid chance that he’s a HOF with his 4 division titles. But I think he left FOOD on the table as far as his legacy. Everyone is in this for money. But I think he started taking money fights too early and he never recovered. Let’s look at his career. 

He beats Orlando Salido for the featherweight title in a bizarre fight. Garcia was clearly winning but Salido was still IN it and Garcia’s nose was injured and he opted out. I’m not saying he wouldn’t have won and I definitely get why he opted out, but I’m just stating what happened. 

Then he stops Juan Manuel Lopez in his 1st title defense. Solid defense although Lopez was past his best but Garcia lost his title on the scales. So he didn't get a chance to establish a great legacy at featherweight (126).

He then moves up to 130lbs, stops Rocky Martinez for a title, defends it one time by dominant decision and he’s then off for 2 years. 

He comes back, wins a tune-up then stops Dejan Zlaticanin for the lightweight title. This is his best career pocket and at this time I thought he was a P4P guy and him and Loma was close to 50/50 with Loma a slight favorite. Loma was simultaneously on one of the best runs ever at 130….

So Garcia takes a BIG event fight vs Adrien Broner at 140lbs. He wins a clear decision and then he beats Sergey Lipinets for a 140lb title. Mikey is now a legit 4 division champion. 

He moves back down and fights Robert Easter in a unification and wins. At this time Garcia was one of the best fighters in boxing. He didn’t have a distinguished run in a specific division but overall his legacy was ascending. Loma at this time went into a performance slump after giving so much of himself vs Jorge Linares. This was the TIME to fight Loma. In my humble opinion Loma has not looked the same since the Linares fight. The combination of age, injuries and size of the lightweights have caused this. Garcia definitely had the frame for lightweight that suited him more than it did Loma. 

So after his only career unification and one of his best career wins, Garcia only fights 3 more times. He jumps to 147 to fight Errol Spence. He has to make his money. So I don’t knock that. But this fight was his undoing as an elite fighter. He lost every single round on each of the scorecards which is telling. Rarely does a fighter score a SHUTOUT on ALL of the scorecards in a fight of that magnitude. While Garcia didn’t get kod, he lost BAD. 

Then he struggles vs Jesse Vargas to a win. And then loses to Sandor Martin and he doesn’t fight anymore. The inactivity and weight jump to welterweight to fight Spence turned the trajectory of his career. Garcia was an undefeated P4P, 4 division champion. Then he fought Errol Spence….

The reason the Loma fight would have been important for his legacy is because Mikey and Loma are roughly the same age. They are older than Garcia, Haney, Lopez and Tank. I don’t think he would have ran the table if he fought the younger guys. But he had a chance to. Solid punch, sound fundamentals, excellent trainers, solid chin and class. So while he may not have ran the table, I don’t think he would’ve been WINLESS vs them either. He most likely would have won some and lost some. But you can’t win a fight you don’t take. 

Had Mikey beat Loma in a unification which would have been possible, especially after Loma fought Linares, the Super fight that would have fit the PPV model would have been Mikey vs Tank. There would have also been a Pacquiao fight available who was closer to Garcia’s natural size and a winnable fight given Manny’s age. Some fighters don’t have a choice on who they fight. But Garcia did and unfortunately he chose a weight class that didn’t seem to suit him when he didn’t HAVE to. As crazy as this may sound given that Garcia was a pro for a long time and had over 40 fights. It’s hard to place him because of the constant weight jumps and not enough challenges during his prime run at his prime weights. 

I certainly think Mikey Garcia is a HOF caliber fighter. But ranking him is tough. I will say excellent fighter, excellent career. Not quite great, but he could be a contemporary great and a possible HOF. 

Dear Breadman,     

I’ve been watching fights for 70 years now, since my grandfather introduced me to the Friday Night Fights when I was 10. I’ve learned to respect everyone involved in boxing, starting with prelim fighters who are still risking their lives for peanuts in four round fights watched by approximately nobody. (On the few occasions when I've been able to attend boxing cards in person, I've always shown up before the start of the first prelim.)

So it pains me to make derogatory comments about any professional fighter. But: Watching Joe Joyce vs. Kash Ali last night was a painful experience. Ali was a slightly animated punching bag. In one particularly bad round I counted him throwing eight punches. Meanwhile Joyce, who obviously has a very good chin, apparently wasn't interested in mounting any defense but instead attacked Ali with roundhouse punches looking like a bad boxing movie. Hasn't anyone ever taught him how to throw a straight punch?

I'd be extremely curious to know your viewpoint on these fighters.


Leslie Gerber

Woodstock NY

Bread’s Response: I haven’t watched much of Joyce’s opponent but I’ve seen Joyce several times. He does throw a good straight punch. He beat Daniel Dubois with a hard jab if you remember. Joyce is a guy who takes a lot of punches. Once that armor gets cracked, usually they go up and down from then on. Joyce was stopped brutally twice by Zhang. At this point I hope Joyce gets a title shot but honestly I think he missed his window. Joyce had a reasonably high peak stopping both Parker and Dubois. But it’s harder to maintain it when you’re almost 40 and have taken the shots Joyce has.

I saw you attend some of Archbishop Wood’s PIAA tournament games. I was going to come over and talk to you but I saw you were with your family. I assume it was to see Jalil Bethea of Wood. He’s a tremendous talent. Watching him play, I thought to myself from what other sport would you draft potential boxers from?

Bread’s Response: Yes I attended 3 games. My kids play basketball and I wanted them to see that environment. You should have come over and said what’s up… Jalil Bethea is the truth. I don’t care if Wood lost. That kid has a bright future. He also took a pic with my son, so I appreciate that. While I was watching him I thought to myself this kid would make an excellent Super Middleweight. He’s wiry strong, fast twitch explosive and he has a massive reach. With 2 months of training I could win the State Novice golden Gloves with him.

I actually did it with a fighter who has zero experience named Roshawn Williams. He was built similar to Bethea, but not as athletic. He stopped boxing after being an undefeated amateur. As hard as boxing is to ascend to the top level. It’s rare you see an athlete like Bethea in boxing. Most boxers are tough and disciplined but not so much FREAK athletes in terms of measurables.

When I was in highschool. At the end of the year, we had a big tournament. It was intramural. A good friend of mine named Kevin Slaughter who coincidentally is the top girls highschool basketball coach in the city, used to pick football players for his team. I didn’t understand why at the time but after they beat us in the championship I did. He had two Dennis Rodmans on his team and they beat us by 1 point in the championship. 

So to answer you directly I would draft athletic guards and wings from basketball. Or DBs and Safeties in football. I’m going to tell you why I’m being so specific with positions. Guards and wings in highschool don’t have to be 6’8. Often times they are between 6-6’3. Most have slender but strong builds. Most are explosive going to the basket but yet have good hand eye coordination. In highschool the centers aren’t the best athletes usually and most are a little gangly and uncoordinated. I don’t want someone overly tall. It’s one thing to learn your body in basketball. But in boxing you will be a BIG target and get hurt.

In football the running backs are usually short and muscular. I don’t mind that but most are bulky which isn’t good for stamina. The D backs and Wide receivers are usually more agile, taller and leaner. So I picked D backs because they’re meaner and WR are usually divas.

What did you think of the Golden Boy Card? William Zepeda may be the best pressure fighter currently going. Does he have a chance with the top guys at 135? And Kid Austin is athletic but it seems that he’s missing something. Where are they right now and what are their upsides?

Bread’s Response: Zepeda is one of the best contenders in all of boxing. But 135 is one of boxing’s most stacked divisions. I feel like he does have a chance vs the top guys but he would be the underdog vs Shakur, Loma and Tank. Not a huge underdog but an underdog nevertheless. 

If Kambosos or Navarette wins the belt, he would be the favorite vs either. I’m impressed with Zepeda and I want to see him vs a big name. My guess is he will go after the most winnable fight for himself with his 1st title shot, then try to parlay that into a big unification. 

I think Kid Austin has something. I like his attitude. He’s competitive, very well conditioned, dog strong, a good puncher and youthful. But he still needs seasoning. He’s not where Zepeda is as far as a contender but that doesn’t mean he won’t get there. It will just take some time. If Schofield is moved right he can be a world champion. It’s just a matter of development. 

Hello Breadman,                           

How can it be that maybe the two best fighters in boxing are not the most popular. Crawford and Ennis. Both are great fighters yet there is no push by the fans or media for them to fight. It seems that both Crawford and Spence have no interest in fighting Ennis and they are the biggest names in the welterweight division. There is not much left after them and Ennis did not win his title in the ring , it was given to him. He needs at least one major fight at welterweight. 

I know he is still young but he will be 27 in a few months. His prime is slipping away from him. He needs a marketing push to create a buzz but he also needs an opponent. It is just amazing to me that the most hyped fight is Jake Paul vs Mike Tyson. All the while these great talents are just sitting on the bench. From just what I see in the media, Ennis now has contract and promotion issues. How does he overcome this and get the push to the front. There has to be a way. Just imagine if SRL were handled this way.

Thank You


Bread’s Response: You know I always invest in ability more than popularity. No matter what. Because eventually I think talent rises to the top. But you have a point. For as great as Crawford is, imagine if he got his first BIG PPV headline in 2017 instead of 2023. Imagine where his legacy and earnings would ne now? But he finally got it and he came through the win of a lifetime.

I feel as though Ennis will do the same but as you said he needs a push. I don’t know what’s going on with his promotional issues but I do know he’s in the gym everyday. Hopefully things work out for him. He’s a wonderful kid and a great talent. 

I personally don’t believe that Ennis doesn’t have anyone to fight at welterweight. He just needs to fight the best and highest rated fighter who is available. Boxing has seen talents like him before. If they keep winning consistently, eventually the BIG fight will happen. Leaving divisions before you’re ready and chasing fighters usually doesn’t work. Opponents move up in weight, they create themselves. Ennis is an offensive powerhouse, like Mike Tyson and Roy Jones of yesteryear. People will tune in to see his talent. He just needs the PLATFORM more so than the opponent. The opponents will come.

In regards to women’s boxing it seems we are in the midst of a Golden Era. Do you think they need their own Year End Awards and Pound for Pound list? Who do you have in your Women’s Pound for Pound top 10? Do you think Women’s boxing will ever get to the point of women’s tennis where it’s actually more popular than men’s tennis? On a sidenote, what are your thoughts on Adrien Broner’s sexual rant towards Alycia Baumgardner? Is it all fair in love and war or was Broner being a misogynist? 

Bread’s Response: I’m not answering anything about what Adrien Broner said about Alycia Baumgardner. Please don’t EVER ask me about stuff like that again. That’s way too personal and it has nothing to do with boxing. Sharing your opinion about everything is self centered and narcissistic. My opinion on this matter definitely is NOT needed….. I wish Alycia all the best in her career, she’s a terrific fighter.

I do think women should have their own awards. That would be awesome. Fighter of the Year, Fight of the Year, Performance of the Year. I think Women have their own P4P list already…I don’t have an actual top 10 list. But I do have a list of who I believe are the top Women’s fighters I have seen recently. 

Claressa Shields

Katie Taylor

Alycia Baumgardner

Mikaela Mayer

Sandy Ryan

Savannah Marshall 

Chantelle Cameron

I hope I didn't forget anyone.

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