Saturday, May 23, 2015

Povetkin Makes Statement With KO Win Over Perez

In Boxing part of the anticipation leading up to a fight for both fan and expert alike is thinking of how a contest between two fighters will play out. Often prior to a fight both fans and experts will attempt to analyze and break down an upcoming fight. Sometimes however, no matter how one may view how a fight might go prior to it taking place, it can ultimately come down to which fighter can land a power punch first.

Such a scenario took place when former world title challenger and longtime Heavyweight contender Alexander Povetkin took on fellow top contender Mike Perez on Friday night at the Luzhniki Arena in Moscow, Russia. Prior to this fight, this observer stated that I expected this fight to be very competitive. In reality, the fight ended before it could really get started.

Povetkin staggered Perez with a right hand and knocked Perez down with right hook seconds later. Although Perez was able to beat the count, it appeared that he may not have known where he was and looked to be how on his feet. Povetkin would bring the fight to an end moments later knocking Perez down for the second time forcing Referee Massimo Barrovecchio to stop the fight at 1:31 of the first round.

Although I expected this fight to be competitive, readers over the years have become accustomed to me stating on many occasions “Anything can happen at any given time in the sport of Boxing and that is what makes the sport so great.” In this fight Alexander Povetkin simply saw his opening, took advantage of it, and closed the show. It was as impressive a performance as Povetkin has had in his career thus far.

Even though there is not much that one can say about a fight that lasts only ninety-one seconds, I believe this fight should have been stopped following the first knockdown of Mike Perez. Although Perez deserves all the credit he receives for managing to get up from the knockdown, he appeared to be out on his feet. Furthermore, it also appeared that Referee Massimo Barrovecchio did not ask Perez if he was okay and did not ask him to raise his hands to indicate that he was ready to resume fighting.

 Instead, it appeared that Barrovecchio simply motioned for the fight to continue upon Perez making it to his feet. Perez with his arms down at his sides was clearly in no condition to continue and although the fight would end moments later, I believe Barrovecchio made a slight error in judgment by allowing the fight to continue albeit briefly. Barrovecchio however, should be commended for immediately stopping the fight upon the second knockdown.

My slight criticism of Referee Massimo Barrovecchio notwithstanding, it does not in any way take away from Povetkin’s performance. With the victory, Povetkin now moves into the mandatory challenger position in the WBC’s Heavyweight ratings. Povetkin is slated to face the winner of the upcoming WBC World Heavyweight championship fight between undefeated champion Deontay Wilder and WBC number nine rated contender Eric Molina, which will take place on June 13th in Birmingham, Alabama.

Although it would appear that Povetkin will fight the winner of Wilder-Molina in his next fight for the WBC world championship, one should remember that Povetkin, who previously held interim/regular champion status in the WBA’s Heavyweight ratings waited over two years to challenge unified IBF/WBO/WBA/IBO world champion Wladimir Klitschko for his title.

It is my hope after what was a devastating knockout of Mike Perez that Povetkin will not have to wait long for his second opportunity at a world championship. It should not be overlooked that Povetkin not only won this fight, but made a statement by winning it in decisive fashion. He deserves to fight for the WBC world championship as soon as possible.  

“And That’s The Boxing Truth.”

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Thursday, May 21, 2015

Povetkin-Perez: Who Will Move Closer To A Title Shot?

Longtime top Heavyweight contender Alexander Povetkin has been a cornerstone of the division for several years. Povetkin, who earned interim/regular champion status in the WBA’s Heavyweight ratings in August 2011 with a victory over former WBA world champion Ruslan Chagaev had to wait over two years for his opportunity to challenge unified IBF/WBO/WBA/IBO world champion Wladimir Klitschko.

Povetkin would remain active fighting and winning four bouts while waiting for his title shot against Klitschko. When Povetkin met Klitschko in October 2013, the then undefeated challenger put forth an extremely “Game” effort surviving four knockdowns in losing a hard fought twelve round unanimous decision. Despite suffering the first loss of his career, Povetkin as this observer stated in covering that fight earned much more respect coming out of that fight than he was given by some going into the fight and had clearly established himself as a legitimate player in the Heavyweight division.

Povetkin returned to the ring in May of last year dominating former world title challenger Manuel Charr en route to a seventh round knockout. In October of last year, Povetkin scored a tenth round knockout over contender Carlos Takam. The two knockout victories also earned Povetkin the number one ranking in the World Boxing Council’s (WBC) Heavyweight ratings.

Before Povetkin can set his sights on a potential title shot however, he will face current WBC number two rated contender Mike Perez on Friday, May 22nd in Moscow, Russia. This is an intriguing fight between one fighter who has fought for a world title before and another fighter who narrowly missed an opportunity to challenge for a world title.

In July of last year Perez lost an extremely close twelve round split decision to top contender and recent world title challenger Bryant Jennings in a WBC world title elimination bout. It was a fight that could have gone either way and despite suffering what was the first loss of his career, Perez showed why he is a top contender and gave Jennings all he could handle. Perez returned to the ring in February of this year scoring a second round knockout over journeyman contender Darnell Wilson.

Now Povetkin and Perez turn their attention to each other in what will be an elimination bout to determine the next mandatory challenger in the WBC Heavyweight ratings. This figures to be an interesting fight between two fighters who have shown a willingness to mix it up with their opponents.

What will interest me in this fight is how Perez will deal with the quick hands of Alexander Povetkin. Povetkin is known for his ability to land his punches in combination as well as his ability to be accurate with his offense. In his fight against Manuel Charr, Povetkin was able to consistently beat Charr to the punch and keep him on the defensive. Povetkin’s combination punching to the body and head eventually broke Charr down as the fight progressed in what was a dominating performance.

One might wonder whether Povetkin will attempt to take a similar approach in this fight against Perez. Perez is known as a fighter who can be aggressive and it will be interesting to see whether he will look to bring the fight to Povetkin from the outset or if he will look to be tactical and play the role of counter puncher. It would not surprise this observer to see these fighters being willing to stand toe to toe with each other at some point in this fight. Although one might consider the Chekhov, Russia native Povetkin a favorite in this fight, I expect this fight to be very competitive and it would not surprise me if this bout were to end up in a close decision similar to Perez’ fight with Bryant Jennings.

Perez was able to win most of the first half of his fight with Jennings by landing the cleaner, more effective punches. Perez was not however, able to sustain the pace he established in the early rounds and faded down the stretch allowing Jennings to get back into the fight and ultimately earn a hard fought decision. Perez must pace himself in this fight and must not fade in the middle and late rounds to be successful, in my opinion.

Who will come out on top in this fight remains to be seen, but what awaits the winner will be a title shot against the winner of the upcoming WBC Heavyweight world championship fight between undefeated world champion Deontay Wilder and WBC number nine rated contender Eric Molina on June 13th. Will it be Povetkin or Perez?

We will find out on Friday May 22nd.

“And That’s The Boxing Truth.”

The Boxing Truth ® is a registered trademark of Beau Denison All Rights Reserved.

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Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Brief Update:

We want to let our readers know that new material will be released on Thursday May 21st. Stay tuned.

 “And That’s The Boxing Truth.”

The Boxing Truth is a registered trademark of Beau Denison All Rights Reserved. 

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Sunday, May 17, 2015

Golovkin Scores 20th Consecutive KO In 14th Successful World Title Defense

Undefeated WBA/IBO Middleweight world champion Gennady Golovkin continued his domination of the Middleweight division in scoring a sixth round knockout over WBA number two rated contender Willie Monroe Jr. Saturday night at The Forum in Inglewood, California. The fight began with the champion looking to cut the ring off on Monroe, who attempted to be an elusive target.

Although the challenger used a lot of lateral movement in the first round and attempted to land punches on Golovkin as he came forward and did manage to make the champion miss with some of his offense, he was unable to land anything to discourage Golovkin from pressuring him. Golovkin continued to pressure Monroe in the second round and dropped the challenger with a solid left hook midway through the round. The champion continued to stalk the challenger and dropped Monroe for the second time with a right hand seconds later.

To his credit, Monroe showed his mettle and was very “Game.” As the fight progressed, Monroe began to stand in front of Golovkin more and let his hands go. By using less lateral movement and choosing to rely on his hand speed, Monroe was able to have success landing combinations and periodically snapping the champion’s head back with his offense. This was particularly evident in rounds four and five where Monroe was able to land to the body and head of the champion and hold his own in exchanges with Golovkin.

The champion however, would bring the fight to its conclusion in round six. A right uppercut from Golovkin at the beginning of the round wobbled Monroe and set off a barrage of punches that led to the challenger being knocked down for the third time in the fight. Monroe was able to barely beat the ten count administered by Referee Jack Reiss who informed Monroe that he had just beaten the count as Reiss was verbally indicating that has count had reached ten. Although appearing willing to give Monroe another chance, the challenger responded to Reiss after being asked if he wanted to continue simply saying “I’m done” causing Reiss to immediately stopped the fight.

Official time of the stoppage was :45 of round six. With the win, Golovkin successfully defended his unified World Middleweight championship for the fourteenth time tying Carlos Monzon’s who held the Middleweight championship from 1970-1977. Golovkin’s knockout of Monroe was also the twentieth consecutive knockout for Golovkin.

As has been the case after each Gennady Golovkin title defense, the question remains who can give Golovkin a significant test? Willie Monroe Jr. did prove his status as a legitimate contender in the Middleweight division and was the first fighter to provide some form of resistance to Golovkin after being dropped twice in the second round.

Although some may be tempted to criticize Monroe for saying that he was done after suffering the third knockdown in round six, this observer will not be one of them. Monroe gave everything he had in this fight and has nothing to be ashamed of. Monroe will give many in the Middleweight division a tough fight, but in this observer’s opinion I believe he simply had nothing left to give in this fight and despite the loss, he proved he belonged in the ring with Gennady Golovkin and will likely continue to be a player in the Middleweight division.

As for the champion he stated following the fight that he wants unification in the Middleweight division. This observer has been vocal in expressing my opinion that I believe it’s time for Golovkin to get an opportunity to face fighters who are considered stars of the sport. Much like Marvelous Marvin Hagler and Bernard Hopkins, Golovkin has gone through everyone that has been placed before him as a challenger to his crown. As was the case with Hagler and Hopkins, each dominated the Middleweight division for a significant period of time before finally getting an opportunity to face fighters who were considered stars in the sport. Once both got the opportunity to go against fighters who were considered not only stars, but also fighters considered to be the best fighters of their era, both Hagler and Hopkins proved their greatness and are rightfully regarded as two of the best Middleweights of all-time.

After fourteen successful title defenses and twenty consecutive knockouts, I believe Golovkin has more than earned his opportunity to show when he can do against some of the marquee stars that the sport has to offer. With potential fights against former Jr. Middleweight world champion Saul Alvarez and current WBC Middleweight world champion Miguel Cotto possibly in Golovkin’s future, it appears that Golovkin may finally get the opportunity to face one of the top stars in the sport.

If however, a fight against either Alvarez or Cotto is not next for Golovkin, there are some interesting options that may be available to him. In terms of further unification of the Middleweight division, possible fights against current WBO champion Andy Lee or the winner of the upcoming fight between top contenders Hassan N’Dam and David Lemieux for the vacant IBF Middleweight world championship could be available to Golovkin.

This observer believes it is more likely that Golovkin will wait for the outcome of the upcoming WBC Middleweight world championship fight between champion Miguel Cotto and former two-time world champion Daniel Geale on June 6th before deciding who he will fight next. We will have to simply wait and see who Golovkin’s opponent will be for title defense number fifteen.

If Golovkin is successful in his fifteenth title defense it will move him into second on the all-time list for successful Middleweight championship defenses behind Bernard Hopkins who successfully defended his title twenty times between 1995-2005. No matter who Golovkin fights next, the Boxing world may be witnessing what could ultimately be a historic championship reign. Whether or not Golovkin will eventually challenge Hopkins’ record remains to be seen.

The Boxing world now awaits the next chapter in the career of Gennady Golovkin.

“And That’s The Boxing Truth.”

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Friday, May 15, 2015

A Look At Golovkin-Monroe Jr.

Undefeated unified WBA/IBO Middleweight world champion Gennady Golovkin has been gradually compiling one of the more impressive world championship reigns in the sport of Boxing. Golovkin, who became a world champion in 2010 has compiled thirteen successful title defenses in under five years and has along the way become a unified world champion.

If Golovkin’s string of successful title defenses were not impressive enough, an element that has become a focal point of his reign as champion is his consecutive knockout streak. In addition to his thirteen successful title defenses, Golovkin has also knocked out his last nineteen opponents including such fighters as Gabriel Rosado, Matthew Macklin, Daniel Geale, Curtis Stevens, and Martin Murray.

As Golovkin has continued on what this observer has called a path of destruction through the Middleweight division and has continued to score knockouts, a question that continues to be asked is who will be able to provide the champion with a significant test. In his last fight in February of this year, Golovkin scored an eleventh round knockout over a very “Game” Martin Murray.

Although Murray was able to extend the champion into the eleventh round for the first time in his career, he was unable to discourage Golovkin and as the fight progressed the champion systematically administered a beating to Murray before the fight was stopped. As Golovkin has continued to successfully defend his title, a recurring statement this observer has said is I believe that it is time for Golovkin to face fighters who are considered top stars.

An interesting storyline may be taking shape as former WBC Jr. Middleweight world champion Saul Alvarez expressed interest last week following his victory over James Kirkland of possibly moving up in weight to the 160lb. Middleweight division to face either current WBC champion Miguel Cotto or unified champion Golovkin. A fight between Golovkin against either Alvarez or Cotto would not only be extremely lucrative for all involved, but would also provide Golovkin with a marquee opponent.

Before a possible encounter against either Alvarez or Cotto can be discussed however, Golovkin will make the fourteenth defense of his world title on Saturday, May 16th against number two rated WBA Middleweight contender Willie Monroe Jr. at The Forum in Inglewood, California. Monroe, a veteran of twenty professional fights will enter this fight on a nine fight winning streak.

In his last fight in January of this year, Monroe scored a ten round unanimous decision over longtime contender Brian Vera. Monroe used his lateral movement, hand speed, and combination punching to outbox Vera en route to a convincing decision victory.

It is logical to assume that Monroe, who has only six knockouts in his nineteen career victories will look to box Golovkin from the outset. Golovkin however, has shown in the past that he can apply consistent pressure even against fighters who are known for their Boxing ability and ability to throw punches in volume as he did against former two-time Middleweight world champion Daniel Geale in July of last year.

Geale, a fighter known for his ability to use lateral movement and throw his punches at a high volume was unable to nullify Golovkin’s pressure. Geale’s best moment of the fight came just prior to being knocked out by Golovkin when he was able to land a flush right hand on the champion’s face, before Golovkin’s own right hand landed on Geale sending him down to the canvas and subsequently ending the fight.

The question in this fight in my eyes will be whether or not Monroe can establish himself as an elusive target and be able to avoid Golovkin’s pressure and power punches for a full twelve rounds. The statistics are not in Monroe’s favor as Golovkin has scored knockouts of twenty-nine of his thirty-two opponents registering a career knockout percentage of nearly 91%.

Although the odds and statistics would seem to favor the champion in this fight, it will be interesting to see if Golovkin looks for a knockout early in this fight, having knocked out his last nineteen opponents. If however, Golovkin is looking past Monroe toward the lucrative fights that may await him should he win this fight, the stage may be set for an upset.

As thirteen previous challengers to Golovkin’s crown have found out however, defeating a fighter with a seek and destroy mentality has thus far been a task that has been easier said than done. Whether Willie Monroe Jr. can provide a significant test for Gennady Golovkin remains to be seen.

What is also at stake for the champion beyond the potential big money fights against Alvarez or Cotto is also the potential of Golovkin eventually challenging the all-time record for successful Middleweight title defenses, which was set by Bernard Hopkins who defended his Middleweight world championship twenty times from 1995-2005. Golovkin now prepares for title defense number fourteen and if successful, he would tie Carlos Monzon’s mark of fourteen successful defenses.

We will see what happens on Saturday night.

“And That’s The Boxing Truth.”

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