Sweet As Sugar
There is a lot of boxing news to get to with this edition of Body Blows but the biggest story is Shane Mosley’s annihilation of Antonio Margarito this weekend. Margarito was a 4-1 favorite going into the fight and looked unbeatable after scoring a TKO victory over Miguel Cotto last summer. Mosley was coming off of a win over Ricardo Mayorga but Mosley was lackluster in that fight. Mosley lost his previous fight to Miguel Cotto.
Shane Mosley ascended to the top of the welterweight rankings with the convincing victory over Antonio Margarito. Mosley showed the speed that most people thought he had lost to beat Margarito to the punch in many of their exchanges. Mosley and trainer Nazim Richardson put forth a great gameplan. Mosley worked the body, used his jab, and clinched to keep Margarito from establishing a rhythm. It was a great moment to witness in boxing and the largest ever Staples Center audience can attest that boxing still has relevance outside of Oscar De La Hoya.
There is no clear path for Mosley’s next move. Margarito was scheduled to have a rematch with Cotto this summer and that still may happen. Mosley, however, has the luxury of picking who he wants to fight next. Just who that will be is the question. Mosley surely wants to avenge his loss to Cotto but if he indeed has his rematch with Margarito then he will be tied up for a while. That leaves many interesting propositions for Mosley. While he didn’t mention any names, Mosley did say he only wants to fight mega-fights. Personally, a fight with Floyd Mayweather Jr would cause me to spend $50 but that’s merely a dream now. But if Pacquiao-De La Hoya can be made then any dream fight is a possibility.
On Again, Off Again, On Again
Another possible Mosley opponent, Manny Pacquiao, finally signed a deal to fight Ricky Hatton. The fight was on, then Pacquiao balked at the money split at the last minute. After Pacquiao realized a 52% split with Hatton was better than a 60% split with anyone else he signed the contract. This was just about the only fight for Manny to make after destroying Oscar De La Hoya in December. Pacquiao will fight Hatton on May 2nd in Las Vegas at 140 pounds, a weight in which Hatton has never lost.
Both fighters bring strong fan bases from their respective countries and it should provide an interesting and exciting atmosphere. I’m just glad the fight was made because it is great for boxing to keep the big fights coming. Too many stars are afraid to lose their spot or their title and end up fighting the opponent with the least risk and highest reward. This will be a fight between two fighters at the top of a division and boxing fans can’t ask for much more than that.
I got a chance to catch the Andre Berto-Luis Collazo fight and the finish was amazing. I don’t agree with the notions that it could be Fight of the Year but the 12th round could be a Round of the Year winner. I hope a rematch happens with these two but to say Collazo was robbed is wrong. A lot of the rounds could have gone either way. I will say that the 116-111 scorecard for Berto was a bit crazy.
Roy Jones Jr. Returns
Roy Jones Jr. will return to the ring in March to face Omar Sheika. Sheika, at his best, was Scott Pemberton’s punching bag so this is no big-name opponent for Jones. Maybe Jones doesn’t want to end his career with a loss and that’s his excuse for this fight in his hometown of Pensacola, Florida.
Interestingly, this fight will be a part of a card combining boxing and mixed martial arts. The Florida commission has already given the go-ahead for the joint venture. No other fights, boxing or MMA, have been announced for this card.
Marco Antonio Barrera Won’t Retire
After all the wars Marco Antonio Barrera has been through, one would think that Barrera would not be so eager to step into the ring again. It seemed that he should be going the way of his rival Erik Morales into retirement but the Baby Faced Assassin continues to fight on. His next fight will be in March against Amir Khan, a silver medalist at the 2004 Olympics. Khan was a hot prospect coming out the 2004 Olympics and looked good after turning pro in 2005. Khan stumbled last year in losing in the first round to Breidis Prescott in the first round. In only his second fight since suffering his first loss as a professional, Khan will be getting in the ring with a future Hall of Famer. Good luck, Amir.
February Shows Love For Boxing
Boxing delivered two great fights in January and February looks like it could be even better. Here are the fights to watch out for in the coming month and where to watch them:
Feb 7 – Vic Darchinyan vs. Jorge Arce (Showtime)
Feb 14 – Alfredo Angulo vs. Ricardo Mayorga (HBO)
Feb 14 – Nate Campbell vs. Ali Funeka (HBO)
Feb 21 – Kelly Pavlik vs. Marco Antonio Rubio (HBO PPV)
Feb 21 – Miguel Cotto vs. Michael Jennings (HBO PPV)
Feb 27 – Tomasz Adamek vs. Johnathon Banks (Showtime)
Feb 28 – Juan Manuel Marquez vs. Juan Diaz (HBO)
Feb 28 – Chris John vs. Rocky Juarez (HBO)