DAILY BREAD SATURDAY EDITION (1-19-13)
By Stephen "Breadman" Edwards
Could Tavoris Cloud be an attractive option for Andre Ward if he soundly defeats Bernard Hopkins (which is absolutely no sure thing)?
Second thing, seems like you and I are about the same age. While it sounds like you grew up idolizing Ray Leonard as a fighter ( I was also a big fan), I would have to say Hagler was my guy. With that said I want to give Leonard much respect here. In a little less than a two year stretch (11/79-9/81), in addition to defending his title against Dave Green, Larry Bonds, and Ayub Kalule, he fought Benitez, Duran twice, and then Hearns to end the nearly two year stretch! Are there many fighters that you can think of that have had a more impressive two year stretch?
Corey in Chicago
Breadís Response: Yes Cloud would be an attractive option for Ward, but I think Cloud and Ward may share the same management in J. Prince so Iím not sure if it will come off.
Because of Leonardís eye injury he does not have many career fights (40). But his four best wins are as good as anybodyís in the history of boxing. So while he may not have the quantity he definitely has the quality. In modern times I can think of two guys who had some crazy runs in such a short time.
Oscar De La Hoya. In a 3 year span Oscar fought Pernell Whitaker, Ike Quartey, Felix Trinidad and Shane Mosley. If you throw in Miguel Angel Gonzales and Derrell Coley, Oscar was really rumbling. He didnít win all of the fights but boy did he line them up.
Manny Pacquiao also had a sick run before his welter run. He fought Barerra, Marquez and Morales in a little over a year. Thatís just incredible. And he moved up 3 times in weight to make the fights.
Andre Ward has also had a great run since 2009. Kessler, Abraham, Froch and Dawson. Thatís really big time. Wardís list may not include the all time greats that the others do, but as far as fighting the best available guy, Ward deserves a mention.
As for the old timers. Many donít have the famous fights that Leonard had. But Henry Armstrong, Ezzard Charles and Tony Canzoneri had some great 2 to 3 year runs. Especially Armstrong from 37-39.
I am itching to bet on Gabriel Rosado over Gennady Golovkin this weekend. I saw online that he is +1200. I believe he is a LIVE dog and those odds are too good. Hopefully the old men in Vegas arenít suckering me again, but I have to put a little pot shot on this fight. I havenít seen any action in the sports books that I frequent, can you recommend a good online sports book? I also think Mikey Garcia is as SAFE as they come over Orlando Salido this weekend. Am I too confident in him?-- Roy
Breadís Response: Well Roy you know how Vegas do. They make the odds super attractive and everybody goes out and takes the sexy pick and the sexy pick gets destroyed. Remember the Mayweather/Mosley odds? Smh. Everybody kept saying how is it that Shane Mosley is a 4 to 1 dog, like Juan Manuel Marquez was and Mosley was so much bigger and stronger. Then Mosley loses worse than Marquez. So I know you know the game.
Thatís not to say that Vegas donít make mistakes. They have been wrong before. Just not often. These particular odds are so attractive it seems like a set up. But you know what, I donít mind being set up. I will put something small on Rosado. Not saying he will win but heís worth the bet. Iím a GAMBLA! Itís in my blood, I assume itís in yours too.
As for the fight itself. Letís break it down. I have watched GGG over and over. Heís a good fighter but his skills donít wow me. Watching pressure fighters like Duran and Chavez you get wowed by their skills not just their destruction. GGG does NOT do that for me. I say that to say if he couldnít punch he would be just an ok fighter.
Giving them the eye ball test I think Rosado has a bigger menu to choose from. But this is what scares me. I believe Vegas think they are on two different levels. Rosado went the distance with Keenan Collins before he went on his NBC tear. Collins is a decent local fighter but he wouldnít go 4 rounds with GGG. Rosado was also extended 12 rds by Jamaal Davis. Davis has an iron chin and heís a decent fighter but heís not better or as accomplished as another Philly guy in Lujuan Simon who GGG knocked cold in 1 round.
I bring this up because I believe the little old men in Vegas are laughing at us. They know about these fights and they are giving us foolís gold. Thatís the only thing I can think of as to why the odds are son BIG in GGGís favor.
Watching the GGG vs Ouma fight I see some chinks with GGG. You can hit the guy whenever you want. A fighter who doesnít panic under the gun that will blunt his offense will take him apart. Andre Ward would beat his you know what. Ouma backed him up and hit him loads of cute punches. The problem is he was outgunned and undersized but he wasnít overwhelmed.
Max Kellerman called GGG the hardest punching middleweight he has ever seen. I love Max but come on bro. How can this be when we donít know anybody GGG has kod. Gerlad McClellan would go exactly 90 seconds with Kasim Ouma and Iím being kind.
However I do believe GGG is an exceptional puncher. He seems to really place his shots with the TOP of his knuckles. Heís the kid who can really give you a ďfrogĒ in your bicep back in the day. I also notice he throws a brutal left hook to the body. He even has variations to that particular punch which will serve him well in the fight.
In a nutshell most European fighters donít have the sauce to deal with elite level Americans. GGG may be the exception and not the majority. We will see soon enough. I will say this if Rosado can handle his power we will see an excellent fight. But thatís the variable that I donít have a grasp on.This fight will either be a blow out or Vince Phillips vs Kostya Tszyu type of affair. I will enjoy it.
Damn! I'm getting pumped for this weekends fights. Salido-Garcia should be on the westcoast, but I read that Arum wanted to have it New York for exposure. He's the promoter, not me, so hopefully he's right. Who you got? I think Salido comes out swinging, knocks Garcia down, but the kid recoups and wins a decision or even catches Salido coming in. I'm like 55-45 for Garcia though. At first, I thought Golovkin-Rosado was only a showcase fight, but I'm giving Gabe a 30-35% chance to win. He's HUGE for a Jr. Middle. Martinez and Burgos is a damn good fight too. I see HBO is following Showtime's lead in broadcasting more triple headers, but in my opinion, much better match ups. Anyways keep them bags coming.
Breadís Response: Mikey Garcia could be the best non champion in boxing. That should change Saturday night. Garcia has some Alexis Arguello to his game. Heís so subtle, he get under appreciated. This fight could look like Arguello vs Olivares. Or Arguello vs Mancini. Where one guy Arguello is just so accurate and efficient that you donít know it until the ko comes. If you notice most of Arguelloís and Garciaís victories come like that. I expect it in this fight. Salido is a raging dog and Garcia will be forced to show his pedigree. Iím going with Mikey. This could possibly be the start of an all time run at 126. Garcia appears to be the kind of fighter that is better at one weight, than he would be jumping around.
Sup bread, first time writer I wanted to comment on your confusion with Ishe Smith. Simply put he is a gym fighter. If you seen him on YouTube against Vargas, Manfredo etc. he looks the part in sparring but its a whole different animal under the bright lights. I see it in the gym all the time as I'm sure you do.Some cats can put it down in the gym with a handful of people but can't put it together when it counts. That's what separates champions from contenders. your thoughts.
J-Bird from da Chi
Breadís Response: I donít want to disrespect Ishe and call him a ďGYM FIGHTERĒ. Thatís an insult to any professional fighter. I myself was a gym fighter. Iím humble when it comes to assessing myself. I never turned pro, I just fought for pride in the gym. So Iím a Gym Fighter.
But Ishe wants to be a world champion so calling him a Gym Fighter would be disrespectful. But I do understand where you are coming from.
Here is the thing about sparring. Some people claim it means nothing. I donít buy that. Of course sparring means something. Sparring is where you learn to fight. If sparring didnít mean anything, fighters wouldnít spend thousands of dollars to get the best ďworkĒ for big fights.
But itís not the end all. What I have noticed about lots of sparring is comfortability and familiarities are paramount. You can have a cold killer in the gym. But if you watch him work with a guy who he works with ALL the time, you may not see the killer in him.
I have also noticed that in sparring you donít have to worry about winning rounds. Lots of guys are just trying to get their stuff sharp. So when the scoring system is not in effect ,fighters tend to be more relaxed. But when they know they are under the gun to outscore their opponents, everything changes.
There are so many factors as to why a fighter will perform better in the gym and it doesnít always have to do with not being able to perform in a real fight. Another is weight. When we see these youtube videos most times these guys are 10-15lbs over their fight weights and the sparring is fewer rounds than a real fight with head gear on. Thatís not an excuse itís just reality.
Maybe Ishe is just more comfortable in the gym, it certainly does seem that way. But I want to give him the benefit of the doubt. Letís see how he performs in this fight. The jury is out but I want to be fair with him.
Send questions and comments to: firstname.lastname@example.org