By Stephanie "Breadman" Edwards
The Daily Bread Mailbag returns with Stephen "Breadman" Edwards discussing various topics such as the heavyweight unification between Deontay Wilder and Anthony Joshua, the middleweight fight between Daniel Jacobs and Luis Arias, Shawn Porter vs. Danny Garcia, and more.
Wilder vs Joshua? Break it down! Heavyweight fight of the century.
Bread’s Response: Wilder is the prime example why I say that 220lbs is all you need in the land of the giants. He’s the best puncher in boxing and if he isn’t number 1 he’s no worse than top 3.
At one time I favored Joshua by a large margin. I didn’t like how many rounds Wilder lost vs lesser fighters. He’s not dominant on a round by round basis. But he is on a fight by fight basis. I believe Joshua is physically stronger, he’s more composed, has the better inside game and he’s fought better opponents in half the number of fights. Klitschko, Whyte, Brezeale and Takam are solid fights for a fighter with less than 20 pro fights.
Wilder has the quicker first step, he seems to have better stamina and he’s riding really high mentally. He knows he’s winning fights off of his natural ability with no PED use. He’s a really confident man. He’s one of the few elite level shot callers who openly talk about PEDs and he’s proactive with the testing which seems to scare some of his opponents.
I don’t want to talk about their chins because I believe they both can knock each other out. I think Joshua has to really blitz Wilder and push him back on his skinny legs. He has to crack him early and keep the Wilder from getting extension on his right hand. Joshua showed he can box but more importantly vs Klitschko he proved he can just chuck ‘em’ and fight. I think he’s too big to sit back and wait on Wilder. The extra weight slows down the reaction time to defend. If he waits on Wilder he will be a BIG target. Joshua has to win the battle of the jabs. It’s important and the jab will neutralize Wilder’s right hand if used properly. Wilder has a way of whipping up his body momentum and gaining maximum leverage on his right hand. No one is going to take that shot if he’s allowed to really step or run in. Watch the step Stiverne allowed him to take before the 1-2 landed for the 1st knockdown.
Wilder has to do what he always does. Land is jab, create space and land the right hand. Very simple. Sort of like what Adonis Stevenson does but from the opposite side. Wilder’s room for success becomes greater because he doesn’t try to do a lot of things. He can have success by just accomplishing one goal. Sometimes the more well rounded fighter is cursed because he tries to do too much. I believe Joshua is more complete but that doesn’t mean he can beat Wilder. I will reserve my pick for when the fight gets made but this is how I see the fight.
I can’t take Kenny Porter. The guy won’t even let his son take the podium at the post fight press conference. He’s the most annoying father in all of boxing. Fathers in boxing are big trouble. What is your take on father trainers and who do you think won the Porter vs Granados fight? Garcia vs Porter would be the battle of asshole dads. Who wins?
Bread’s Response: I actually don’t have a problem with Father trainers. I think they should be judged on an individual basis. There have been some great father and son teams. Angel and Danny Garcia. Kenny and Shawn Porter. Calzaghe, Lomachenko, Morales, Mosley, Santa Cruz, Guerrero, Mayweather etc etc were all trained by their fathers….
Often times fighters have discipline and character issues. Often times a coach just doesn’t have the access or control over the fighter to fix those problems. But a father does. For example coaches these days have a huge cell phone problem with fighters. Doing stupid stuff on social media. Talking on the phone in the gym. Letting the phone distract them. Penn State’s football coach just gave an interview about counterproductive cell phone use. A father can just take his grown sons phone and say I will give it back after the fight. A coach may not be able to do that.
Shawn Porter was a 165lb brick house as an amateur. His father disciplined him down to 147lbs. No one else but his father could have done that. It takes too much work and you basically have to monitor the fighter’s life. Often times a coach has his own kids and his own life and if the fighters isn’t 100% disciplined he won’t listen.
As long as the father is a real boxing man and not just a sperm donor I don’t have a problem with Father/Son teams. Most teams don’t work for the duration anyway. I have also noticed that fighters who aren’t trained by their fathers but are raised by them or father figures, have better character, are more respectful, and are better listeners. You would be surprised at the character flaws of some of these fighters. Most need fathers.
I thought Shawn Porter won a close fight. Maybe 115-113 or 116-112. Granados handled himself well but I didn’t think he won.
Garcia vs Porter would be awesome. And yes they would have a great back story with the dads. I think it’s a really close fight. Garcia is the better puncher and he’s sharper. He lands his money punch more often and he has scored some spectacular kos. Porter doesn’t score spectacular kos. He grinds you out and beats you down.
I think Porter is physically stronger with a higher workrate. Porter will push Danny back. But I think going into Danny’s wheel house is dangerous. Fighters who have made Danny cut the ring down and punch a target going away from him have troubled him the most. He has flourished against fighters who attack him.
This is a hard fight to call and I would expect controversy. Neither guy has been overly dominant vs elite level competition. I don’t expect either to dominate the other. Great fight. It’s a can’t miss fight. Blood, action, knockdowns and high contact.
Who do you think will be Trainer of the Year and who do you think will be Fighter of the Year?
Bread’s Response: There are still 8 weeks of boxing left in 2017 so I don’t want to speak to soon. You know there is this fight between Vasyl Lomachenko vs Guillermo Rigondeaux coming up. The winner of that fight could be Fighter of the Year and the winning trainer could be trainer of the year.
I won’t make my pick until the year is over. But I will tell you some candidates. Derrick James has emerged as a top trainers in the sport. His work with Errol Spence has been well documented but his visual improvement of Jermell Charlo may be his best work. I think James would be a lock to win it if Spence fought more times this year but that’s the era we are in.
Virgil Hunter had a huge career defining victory with Andre Ward in the rematch with Kovalev. In that fight Ward looked like the puncher and he turned into the Krusher vs the Krusher. I know the ending was controversial but that was a huge historic victory. Hunter may need one big win. Let’s see if he gets one before the year is out.
Robert McCraken has done a tremendous job with Anthony Joshua. Joshua won a historically significant fight vs Wladimir Klitshcko…
Brian Mcintyre, the trainer of Terence Crawford. Crawford is a stud and we all know it. But he wasn’t a phenom who was the best amateur in the world. Or the guy everyone was talking about at 5-0. He also wins fights on strategy, technical ability and adjustments. Not just god given physical attributes. Mcintyre deserves more credit that he gets with Crawford. There whole training team actually does.
Pedro Diaz and Anatoly Lomachenko will also be considered depending on who win Rigondeaux vs Lomachenko.
Fighter of the Year. The front runner in my opinion is Anthony Joshua. Joshua established himself as the biggest star on non US soil.
Srisaket Sor Rungvisai should be strongly considered. He kod the #1 p4p fighter, HOF and possibly all time great lower weight fighter in roman Gonzalez. There is a mainstream bias against certain fighters and I think that’s the case with him.
Terence Crawford. He won all 4 belts at 140lbs and he stopped an Olympic Gold Medalist!
Andre Ward only fought once in 2017. But his win over Sergey Kovalev is one of the best wins of the year. The only fighter to beat a fighter as good as Kovalev is, was Sor Rungvisai.
The winner of Lomachenko vs Rigondeaux.
I know you are high on Derrick James as a trainer and rightfully so. But I see something brewing. I think Jermall Charlo will also leave Ronnie Shields and go to James. I think James is the younger more relatable and cooler Uncle type than Shields, who is quiet and not oozing with charisma. I heard Jermall’s comments about his brother fighting Lara and if it happened he would leave Shields. Did you hear the comments and do you think it’s an excuse to leave Shields? Boxing is a business and I think it’s an excuse. What is Shields supposed to do, not train Lara?
Bread’s Response: I didn’t hear the comments so it’s hard for me to have an opinion. That’s an interesting statement Jermall Charlo made if what you’re saying is true. There would have to be some tension because it’s almost like an ultimatum. “If you train a guy to fight my brother I’m going to leave you as my trainer.” Let’s see how it plays out.
Loma rigo odds, too wide or just right? Want to hear your breakdown of fight.. I personally believe that rigo is in big trouble, hes used to fight people who are to scared and or dont know how to press fight or like donaire fight a natural counter puncher. Donaire defense is mainly taking small steps back looking for counters or picking off shots. That doesn't work against guys with faster feet who dart in before u can step back and is away before you can counter. Every fighter runs into someone they cant run away from, i don't think mayweather wanted to fight hatton on inside but had no choice, hattons foot speed forces it.. this will happen to rigo. rigo is fighting a man of the same talents who happens to be bigger, younger and more active, i never seen rigo fight on inside, when he does he clinches, am i wrong for wanting to bet the house on loma??
Bread’s Response: I think Loma should be between +200-+250.
The only time I have ever picked against Rigo was against Donaire. While studying Rigo I honestly wanted to pick him and said so on youtube. But I didn’t know enough about him to pull the trigger. He looked like the better fighter given the eyeball test. He put on a master class that night. What I noticed about Rigo is he fights up to his competition.
Rigo has a complacent, dismissive gene in him. He sort of like Pernell Whitaker was against guys like Anthony Jones. If you watch that fight you can see Whitaker was just going through the motions. But if you put a threat in front of Whitaker he was “on”. Where as Loma is like Floyd Mayweather. Equal talent but meticulous.
I think Rigo is the better puncher out of the two. I also he has more length he’s just not taller. There footwork is equal just different. Rigo’s footwork is designed to draw you in and make you miss. Loma’s footwork is designed to step around you and create punching angles.
Rigo has a bait, show jab. It’s just used to mesmerize his opponents and line them up for left hands over the top and underneath. I think Rigo can win this fight. He’s not over his head. If he gets off to a good start and if he can back Loma up he can win. As good as Rigo is, his one weakness is he really doesn’t infight. Loma is a master in fighter.
Loma is like a designer pressure fighter. He’s a hybrid of Manny Pacquiao and Joe Calzaghe. Volume, angles and oozing with confidence. Loma has improved in front of my eyes. At one time I thought he tried to do too much and was infatuated with himself making extra moves. But in the last year he has really became more efficient. I’ve also picked against Loma once. That was the Garry Russell fight. Loma put on a shot and really handled Russell who I think is the goods.
Loma does have a weakness that no one has noticed. Loma doesn’t like to fight off of his back foot. He can fight off of his back foot but he doesn’t like to be forced on the back foot. It’s a difference. If Rigo can somehow hold his ground and force Loma to box him from a distance instead of stepping around him and brutalizing his body, we have a fight. If Rigo cant hold ground and he allows Loma to get up on him I think Loma stops him late. I think Loma has more ways to win than Rigo does. Everything has to go right for Rigo. Everything doesn’t have to go right for Loma. On top of that I think Loma’s volume and crowd support with influence the judges. My pick is Loma.
Hi Bread, it’s always great to read your mailbags and I haven’t sent one in a while so I thought I’d send you an email. I can appreciate that any boxer who steps in the ring is brave, but there are levels to this. I remember a while back you spoke of all the different types of punchers, and came up with descriptions and a list such as swordsmen, electric slashers, heavy handed debilitators, etc. I can’t recall if you have done a similar breakdown of boxers’ mental psychology. What I mean is that we know some fighters are so mentally tough and prideful and are willing to die in the ring, whereas others may be a bit weak mentally and crumble when up against it. Some of this depends on the grooming of the fighters, like how promoters will build up a fighter’s confidence (and record) by keeping them in the ring with inferior fighters which if done too quickly, can negatively impacts their “seasoning” when facing adversity. But some of it is just natural mental toughness. If you have any type of mental classifications of boxers, I was wondering if you could share those.
The reason I was thinking about this is because I was remembering Big George Foreman fighting Muhammad Ali at the Rumble in the Jungle in Zaire. As we know, George was the favourite and was defeated by the greatest in Muhammad Ali, who may also be one of the strongest mentally of all time. Despite being the underdog, Ali was able to overcome Foreman and take him out, using the rope-a-dope, but it was more than skill and experience that won the fight, it was his heart, pride, confidence and mental toughness. This defeat impacted Foreman who had retired for about 2 years and was not quite the same again, maybe only regaining full confidence years later by making a late-career comeback and winning the WBA and IBF titles from Michael Moorer.
I was also thinking about Marvelous Marvin Hagler and how he was so prideful that he retired after the decision loss to Sugar Ray Leonard (after failing to secure a rematch). It seems to me that Foreman initially retired due to pride/humiliation more than a loss confidence because he came back well past his prime to fight the young heavyweights of the 80s and 90s.
If you could break down the difference (in your opinion) between the mental toughness of fighters like Ali and Foreman, Leonard and Hagler, or maybe throw in any other examples you can think of to describe the different types of mental toughness, that would be great. Thanks again for doing what you do, your readers appreciate your contributions to the sport!
St. James, Vancouver
Bread’s Response: Thank you bro. I think that was my greatest mailbag. My 5 categories for punchers where Speed Thudders, Swordsmen, Heavy Handed Debilitators, Electric Slashers and Bludgeon Crew. I think it’s fair to give certain type of punchers the correct names instead of just saying hard puncher. Because we know that Tommy Hearns and George Foreman punched differently although they are both great punchers.
Pride and Heart are different. They can lead to the same thing but they are different. Pride is fueled by humiliation and embarrassment. Heart is fueled by courage and principles.
For example if a guy you know you can’t beat starts a fight with you and your girlfriend is there. If the only reason you fight him is because your girlfriend is there you have pride. If that same guy starts a fight with you and no one is there and you still fight him you have heart. Some people have both…
I have different labels I have tried to explain to fighters. For example some fighters are dogs. Where they attack and have the heart to try to win. Some fighters are cats where they only show heart when you corner them and force them to fight back. I’ve also described some fighters as Dead Game. It’s a term used for pitbulls. Some pitbulls are known as dead game because they fight until the death. They fight until the fight is out of them.
Sometimes fighters aren’t vulnerable so they don’t overcome as much adversity. Like for an example Hagler. We have never seen Hagler hurt and have to come back from the brink of death because of his chin and toughness. But we know he has heart because he fought anybody and when you cracked him he destroyed you. Usually fighters who are a little more vulnerable get more credit for heart. But guys like Hagler deserve it to.
Ali is the strongest man mentally I have ever witnessed in a boxing ring. You can have equal mental strength to Ali but you can’t surpass him. Ali’s mental strength is so high because he didn’t always get in the ring in great shape. But he had a unique ability to fight while extremely fatigued. He would also brainwash himself into believing he can beat anyone. Ali’s mental game is outerworldly.
Ray Leonard is very similar to Ali. He was able to fight fatigued like a devil. Watch him late vs Hearns, Benitez and Duran. Leonard always got the better of the later rounds. Leonard also brainwashed himself into believing he could defeat any man. The difference in ali and Leonard is number of fights. Ali did it more often. Which takes more.
Hagler has a different kind of mental toughness. He had the dedication to be in perfect shape for each fight. He trained harder consistently than anyone. You can tell by his body, consistent performances and him staying at the same weight his entire career. That takes supreme dedication. I love Ali to death but I don’t believe Ali would have stayed at middleweight for 13 years. He mental toughness was different.
Foreman had a resilience about himself. I don’t believe he knew he had it early in his career. But Foreman showed a career worth of it vs Ron Lyle. George Foreman was truly a monster he just didn’t put it all together mentally until later. Foreman didn’t function well under fatigue until he can back and was older and was a more mature person.
All 4 of the guys you named had the mental toughness to get in the ring with anybody!
Give me your pick and breakdown for Jacobs vs Arias? Something tells me Arias can win this fight.
Bread’s Response: Luis Arias was a really good amateur. He was one of the better amateurs in the country at 165lbs for a few years. He’s very confident. I think he’s going to really rumble. I wouldn’t surprised if he dropped or hurt Danny Jacobs.
But I’m picking Jacobs. I think his hand speed, experience and A side status will win him a hard fought decision. Jacobs is a tremendous talent but some guys perform better as underdogs. Jacobs’s best two performances were against GGG and Kid Chocolate. He was the underdog in both fights. Some fighters just need that motivation of being counted out. In this fight everyone including HBO is counting on Jacobs to destroy Arias. I don’t think he will but I think he will win.
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