Friday, May 02, 2008

De La Hoya - Forbes Prediction

By JE Grant

When former multiple division champion Oscar De La Hoya steps into the ring Saturday night, his legion of fans will briefly suspend their knowledge that their 35 year-old hero is far on the downside of a career that has at times flickered with greatness.

They will be able to set aside the understanding that he has lost 3 of his last 5 bouts and one of his wins -- vs. Felix Sturm -- kinda looked like a loss too.

All this is possible because the hand-picked would-be spoiler, Steve Forbes, just does not have the guns in the arsenal to keep the bigger, stronger, faster and generally more skilled De La Hoya honest.  Forbes' respectable 33-5 record, fought mostly near the lightweight limit, is sprinkled with only 9 knockouts. While he briefly held a world title, he has never engaged the mega-talents that Oscar has faced --- and sometimes beaten.

Forbes raised his profile by participating against the journeymen of the Contender series in 2006 and advancing to the finals against bigger men. He failed to get past the limited Grady Brewer, who sported a 21-11 record.

Nonetheless, he showed competence and a professional dedication that registered with the matchmakers of Golden Boy.

The 5'10" De La Hoya will have plenty of breathing room against the much shorter Forbes (5-'7) by powering home a jab early. Forbes will attempt to move under the bigger man's attack only to find uppercuts and potent hooks to the body. At every turn De La Hoya will outspeed him, outpunch him and will ultimately throw and land so many combinations that Forbes will leave the ring with the feeling he never had a chance. And, in fact, he doesn't have a chance.

Look for a few rounds of Oscar peppering a game and physically fit Forbes before he closes the show with an overwhelming display of firepower that Forbes cannot absorb.

An early night for Golden Boy. De La Hoya by KO in 5.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

"FAR on the downside"?

Certainly on the downslide, but guess what?

I still think he's one of the best 147/154-pounders on the planet! (Actually -- I would probably put him #1 at 154 since that division is so shallow!)

Forbes = A truly great guy and a good boxer, but he has no business fighting above 140. This fight is pretty farcical.

* Note - I was born the same day/same year as Oscar. ("Go 'old man'! Go!" )


5:19 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Oscar looked "pretty good"...but things should be kept in there proper context.

Something the HBO "cheerleader squad" failed to do for the most part.


BTW - I think Oscar really in fact should have stopped him.


3:32 PM  

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