By Chris Robinson
During Friday's wild WBO NABO lightweight title bout at Buffalo Bill's Casino in Primm, Nevada between Sharif 'The Lion' Bogere and Los Mochis' Raymundo Beltran, Zab Judah could be found ringside as an interested spectator. Judah was cheering wildly and offering advice as Bogere, whom he knows from the Vegas scene, gutted out a tough ten-round decision.
Judah has seen him name thrust back into the spotlight these days after winning the vacant IBF junior welterweight crown by knocking out South African behemoth Kaizer Mabuza in seven rounds last March and is always one to follow the sport closely. I asked Zab what he thought about last weekend's Manny Pacquiao-Shane Mosley contest at the nearby MGM Grand and he seemed to sugarcoat his answer regarding the tepid contest.
"It was a pretty good match," Judah said respectfully of Manny's unanimous decision victory. "Pacquiao did his thing. It was what it was. Pacquiao showed what he always showed. It was a typical Pacquiao fight. He did great. With that being said, he did great and he moves on to the next level."
By all indications Top Rank promoter Bob Arum is looking to angle Pacquiao into a third fight with Juan Manuel Marquez this November. It is one of the most sellable fights out their given the history of the two men yet Judah seems to scoff at seeing Marquez, who holds titles at 135 pounds, moving up two weight division to challenge Pacquiao for his WBO welterweight strap.
"Who would want to watch that?" Judah asked with a big grin on his face.
With WBC and WBO junior welterweight champion Timothy Bradley's latest signs of apprehension towards facing WBA champion Amir Khan, the British star is now without a dance partner for his July 23rd showcase. Judah has seen his name thrown into the mix as a potential Khan foe but when asked about those rumors he offered up a response that caught me off guard.
"Well, I like the Pacquiao fight," Judah said bluntly. "No disrespect to Amir Khan but it's a step down for myself. He's a kid. You know what I'm saying? He's just coming on the scene."
Mighty high aspirations from Judah given Pacquiao's recent streak of dominating foes from 140 pounds on up in recent years but a fight that's worth an honest assessment, if anything else. But what would Judah, a speedy southpaw with pop in both fists, bring to the dance that Pacquiao hasn't seen in recent times?
"The same thing the whole world knows that I am going to bring. I'm going to bring it."