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April 26, 2013

By Doveed Linder

I thought Saul "Canelo" Alvarez fought an excellent fight, defensively and offensively, in his win over Austin Trout.  I could not believe his upper body movement.  He is turning into a disciplined fighter, right before our eyes.  Also, his strategy for the Trout fight was superb.  Hence, he has an excellent corner.  Many boxing analyst had picked Trout to outbox Canelo;  Canelo's corner outwitted the corner of trout.  Trout was very surprised by Canelo's game plan for thier fight.  After viewing how well Canelo fought against Trout, I would have him fight once more this year, in October or November.  Then I would match him up against Floyd Mayweather in May of 2014.  By then, Canelo would have more experience and knowledge within the ring.  Let us not forget, he is only 22 years old, and he is still in the learning stages.  He has a great upside.  Mayweathers' age will begin to factor into his fights, as we saw against Cotto.  Although I have Mayweather beating Guerrero, Guerrero will have his moments. By this time next year Mayweather will be a tad slower and Canelo will only get stronger and better.  If they fight in May of 2014, Canelo's superior body shots, punching power in both hands, and defensive skill could bring Mayweather his first loss as a professional.  Furthermore, Canelo has a strong possibility of winning via a TKO.  If Mayweather dodges Canelo, we should remove him from the Pound for Pound list.   Time will tell....  Artemio Rodriguez, Chicago fight fan
Linderís Response: Canelo did well, but not as well as some people thought he would.  This was his toughest test and he was forced to leave the comfort zone that he had found in previous fights.  He was forced to think, which is part of the reason he appeared a bit tired.  I think highly of Canelo though.  People were saying before the fight that if he beats Trout, he will be considered a top fighter and I think heís earned that.  I agree that heís a work in progress, but I think that right now is the time to fight Mayweather.  If Mayweather was 33, I would say give him another fight or two.  But Mayweather could slip overnight and if they wait, the chance might not be there again.  The worst thing that could happen is that he would lose.  But he is young enough and popular enough that if he lost to Floyd Mayweather, he could bounce back and probably sell out the stadium in his very next fight.

Just thought I would chime in.  Your article was a good read.  I believe that you are fair and objective especially after reading your mailbag.  I definitely respect your opinion on the subject of Floyd Mayweather and manny Pacquiao.  My two cents worth is that I believe both fighters are at fault equally for ducking not just Mayweather.  We all know that Mayweather has a big ego and that he is not cut from the same cloth as say Sugar Ray Leonard or Oscar De La Hoya.  Both Leonard and De La Hoya fought the badass others thought would beat them.  However, both dictated terms of agreement to their adversaries.  No fight if they didnít.  Mayweather, when in the same position tries to do the same.  In my humble opinion, when negotiating with Mayweather you must concede areas you otherwise wouldnít to secure the fight. Mannyís (and/or promoter Bob Arumís) ego got in the way the first time around.  Manny wasnít going to be dictated too.  Otherwise he would have accepted the drug testing initially.  Afterwards, Mayweatherís ego didnít allow him to revisit the idea of fighting Manny.  What a shame to us boxing fans and the fighting legacies of other all-time greats such as Leonard and De la hoya.  I'm now not confident that the Canelo fight gets made for the same reasons of ego.  I hope that I'm wrong. DC Stretch

Linderís Response: I agree that both sides are at fault, but I believe that Mayweather is the root of the reason why the fight was never made.  Like you said, it has been a battle of egos.  When Bob Arum said they needed time to build a stadium, that was complete bull.  People say that Arumís greed got in the way, but I donít think thatís the case.  Arum is from Brooklyn and he has a Brooklyn temper.  If he thinks heís being insulted, heís not going to lay down.  But I must say that if I were in Team Pacquiaoís shoes, I would have a hard time accepting Mayweatherís drug test terms, given the way these terms were presented.  In my opinion, this was just a way to sabotage the deal.  I found it to be very manipulative.  What would have happened if Team Pacquiao made every concession?  Something tells me that the fight wouldnít have happened anyway, but thatís just speculation.  Sugar Ray Leonard and Oscar De La Hoya may have dictated the terms of the negotiations of the fights they were in, but those guys had class.  They didnít disparage other fighters the way Mayweather did to Pacquiao.  

You say that Floyd Mayweather ducked Manny Pacquiao....Well what constitutes "ducking"? For instance, if we rely on the facts only (and I mean only facts) then it would have been Manny to have ducked. Factually speaking (without falling into the mass revisionist theories you guys delve into,)  the FIRST negotiations between Pac and Floyd ended a few days after with Floyd's team going public with their drug test demand up until the day of the fight. You can look it up (if you chose to operate in facts). Manny's team indicated they would fight Cotto instead; to which (once again this is fact) Floyd's team went public with a 14 day cut off. Arum left the negotiations and signed to fight Miguel Cotto. So, it is fact that Manny left the first negotiation. Was he then ducking?  

Another fact is that when Floyd signed to fight Mosley he stated publicly (once again look it up) it would be random drug testing up until the day of the fight for anybody he would fight from that point forward.  How do you guys ignore facts is beyond me but you have fooled yourself into believing your own lies. Manny, well his team tried to go back to the 14 days he offered before. Yet had he not already stated that it would be RBT to fight day for everybody.  That's the equivalency of a smoker quitting cigarettes only for some idiot to negotiate for the former smoker to just take a hit. It makes no sense. Why negotiate on a term that has been stated as an absolute and has changed until this day? In my opinion that was an obvious sign of Pacquiao's promoter Bob Arum not wanting the fight as he already knew Floyd's stance (yet, this is my opinion so I digress). The two teams went to arbitration (fact) over it and the overseer publicly stated it was not Floyd who left negotiations nor was he at fault for collapse. Arum went on to sign another fight. Was Manny ducking?

The next negotiation after Pac had lost to Tim Bradley, Floyd didn't want to split the money 50-50. This is fact. And as far as my opinion it is the one time I think he deserved fault for the fight not happening. But the brazen way this rag as well as others join the morally questionable populous (one would have to think that the motivation behind the mainstream dislike for Floyd borders on skin and hair-for a surety he does not get the benefit of the doubt like Pac in similar instances. Yet he has long learned that the way to wealth from the mainstream is not by being nice and honorable for a black athlete; but to be brash, unmanageable, and rude. For if it were true that a kind and nice black athlete could have the mainstream power and wealth; whether it is derived from hate, that Floyd does then Sugar Shane and Andre Ward would have also attained it. Both are as nice as Pac. Yet, the difference is what?) in hating on Floyd without rationale is simply inexcusable. You should be ashamed. And you lied as well. You say Pac always fight the best available competition.....Yet, he ducked Raheem and everyone knows it.

But the opportune glasses of acceptance have conveniently missed that.  He was called out on it as well. Raheem wanted the fight. Why then is this not a duck? If you weigh 150 on one scale, why then is the 150 you measured on another scale "a different 150"? Facts are facts but you have helped to delude facts into a mesh of blibbering incoherency. You further the lies and basically call Floyd a coward without having to "do" so. But you know what you are doing. The very, very sad thing is that you have an audience who reads this and can be influenced by it. And so they join in to promote the same mess. If I were Floyd would I fight Canelo? Hell no. I would not fight him just because you have labeled me a coward and belittled everything I have accomplished. AND I know even if I fought my heart out and would just roll over and say I was never that good; that you knew I was over-rated, that you knew Pac would have beaten me. I would never give you that satisfaction. The reason the Pac fight never happened was your fault (people like you) in the first place. Instigators. I truly believe that people who write, publish articles and opinions should be licensed; held to a standard of factual based reporting. But hey, Floyd has to live with his the end so will you. - Conrad Allan

Linderís Response: When I say he ďduckedĒ him, I mean he did not sit down at the negotiating table with the intentions of making a deal.  I think he stirred things up because, for whatever reason, he did not want this fight to happen.  I donít think he was scared in the traditional sense, I just donít think he wanted it.  This is not a fact, itís just my opinion.  Iím not going to gather evidence and put anyone on trial.  I donít dislike Floyd or wish him any ill will.  I actually think he has some fine qualities as a person.  At the same time, he has done and said some things that have turned me off.  I admit that Iíve believed the whole ďFloyd ducked MannyĒ theory for so long that maybe Iím no longer open to the idea of considering both sides.  Iíd like to take your comments seriously, but itís hard because you are making this debate so heated and personal.  You accused me of lying, you put words in my mouth, and then you told me that I have to live with MY OWN legacy.  Is your response to my article any more admirable than what you accuse me of?

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