Friday, September 30, 2005

Toney-Guinn fertile ground for an upset

I should have learned my lesson about predicting against James Toney but here I go again. James seems to have everything going into this bout with Dominick Guinn. He's light-years more experienced. He still thinks of his fight against WBA beltholder John Ruiz as a win. He still thinks he can beat King Kong.

The one thing Guinn brings into this fight is legitimate heavyweight power. His left hook brings with it a force that Toney has yet to see in the squared circle. Surely Guinn has recent baggage. His draw with Friday Ahunanya and decision losses to Serguei Lyakhovich and Monte Barrett are puzzling.

In his bout with Toney, Guinn, age 30, will reignite the promise he showed earlier in his career. Lest any of us begin to believe that Toney is impervious to the whims of Mother Nature, the fact that he is 37 years old is also not irrelevant.

Against great odds, Guinn will upset the legendary Toney by dishing out true heavyweight power against the chin of a true middleweight.

Guinn by KO in 10.

Byrd-Williamson prediction

DaVarryl Williamson has arrived at his last, best chance for claiming heavyweight glory. At the age of 37 and with a couple of solid wins in row, Williamson faces a Chris Byrd who has been out of the ring for nearly a year. Styles truly do make fights and "Touch of Sleep" figures to have a tough night against the slippery IBF titlist. Williamson will give it his all but he'll miss often and simply not be able to figure out the puzzle that is Chris Byrd. Byrd by decision.

Tarver’s got Roy’s number

The late great Archie Moore referred to opponents that he just couldn’t figure out as a “cousin.” A cousin is someone who has your number despite the fact that he may or may not prove as convincing against mutual opponents. For Moore, that man was Ezzard Charles. Despite meeting him on numerous occasions in the ring, Moore could never get past Charles – even though he would later achieve greatness and hold the light-heavyweight title for 10 years. Antonio Tarver has seemingly mastered the puzzle of Roy Jones. Tarver will once again take his deliberate southpaw approach and befuddle Jones. Roy Jones has proven his greatness over an extended period but he has met the one man that he just can’t figure out. Tarver by KO in 10.

Tuesday, September 27, 2005

Brewster defends against Krasniqi – just in case you didn’t know

Luan Krasniqi will face a buzz saw for the first time in his life. The lackluster opponents he’s faced in Germany will not have prepared him well enough for the charging Lamon Brewster. Krasiniqi’s chance lies in taking this fight long and keeping Brewster at bay. For his part, Brewster has not been particularly difficult to reach. He must get under Krasniqi and stick to him throughout the contest. If he attempts an outside boxing match he could jeopardize his belt. My bet is Brewster will do what he does best and put the heat on early and often. Krasniqi may prove able to keep Brewster off for a time but the power will tell in the end. Lamon Brewster will punish Krasniqi and pull him out of his game. The wilting Krasniqi will finish the fight on the seat of his pants. Brewster by knockout in round 8.

Sunday, September 18, 2005

Barrera, Mosely, Chavez post wins in Vegas

LAS VEGAS (MGM Grand) – Marco Antonio Barrera, 61-4, 1 NC (42 KOs), Mexico, 130, scored a resoundingly clear 12 round decision over Robbie Peden, 25-3 (14 KOs), Australia, 130, to unify the WBC and IBF 130 pound titles, Sept. 17.


Shane Mosely, 41-4 (35 KOs), Pomona, Calif., 148, cruised past Jose Luis Cruz, 33-1-2 (27 KOs), Santa Ana, Calif. (via Mexico) 148, to win a clear, though lackluster 10 round decision.

Jesus Chavez, 42-3 (28 KOs), Austin, Texas, 135, captured the IBF lightweight title with an 11 round stoppage of defending titlist Leavander Johnson, 34-5-2 (26 KOs), Atlantic City, N.J., 135 in a bout that led to Johnson ending up in an operating room in an effort to save his life.

Sunday, September 11, 2005

Raheem upsets Morales; major rematch with Pacquiao scotched

LOS ANGELES (Staples Center) – In a card dubbed "Double Trouble" Sept. 10 that was supposed to showcase the considerable talent of Erik Morales and Manny Pacquiao leading to a major rematch, “trouble” was the operative word. Zahir Raheem, 27-1 (16 KOs), Philadelphia, 133, thoroughly dominated a confused and frustrated boxing superstar Erik Morales, 48-3 (34 KOs), San Ysidro, Calif (via Mexico), 134½, capturing a twelve round decision and more importantly winning a place in the thick of boxing’s elite. Manny Pacquiao, 40-3-2 (32 KOs), Philippines, 130, scored a dominating knockout at the end of the sixth round over a willing but limited Hector Velazquez, 42-11-2 (31 KOs), Mexico, 130.

Saturday, September 10, 2005

Calzaghe injury against Ashira forces cancellation of Lacy bout

Joe Calzaghe has proven true to form. He beat an unworthy contender to defend his WBO belt for the 17th time. Just as many expected, however, a new obstacle to his impending title unification match with Jeff Lacy was discovered as Calzaghe “injured” his hand. So many predicted something that would keep the two from meeting each other in the ring. Lacy should just move on and try to lure Mikkel Kessler or Markus Beyer into the ring to consolidate some more belts. Of course those of us looking forward to a Calzaghe-Lacy showdown are disappointed but definitely not surprised. Back to the drawing board.

Klitschko – Peter, the year’s most important non-title bout

All the analysis and inside-boxing talk about the upcoming Wladimir Klitschko - Sam Peter fight will not do justice to the relative magnitude of this non-title fight. In the last few decades, big name heavyweight fighters have only rarely faced each other without a title of some kind on the line. In fact, it seems that with the proliferation of the alphabets, their bizarre ratings committees, reluctant promoters, and fighters who seem to care more about belts than real championships, heavyweight bouts with two highly truly talented fighters is becoming a scarce commodity. Klitschko and Peter are among the youngest of the division’s elite and each needs this fight not only to land a title shot, but also to erase substantial question marks and gain wide respect.

Wednesday, September 07, 2005

September's Grant Top 25 Heavyweights

This month’s Grant Top 25 is now online. Click on the link. Send your comments.

Sunday, September 04, 2005

Owen Beck

What's happened to Owen Beck? His loss to Ray Austin has to be seen a big blow to a career that seemed in an upward arc until just a few months ago. Coupled with a loss in his previous bout, with Monte Barrett, he's seemingly hit a plateau. We'll keep watching "What the Heck." Hopefully we don't end up saying "What the Hell."
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