Michael Koncz on Floyd Mayweather-Manny Pacquiao: "If the fans still want to see this fight, we're willing to do it."
Dougie's FAT Friday Mailbag
What's up Dougie,
It is an honor to get the opportunity to exchange an email with you. I’ve been reading your mailbags for a couple of years now and I really enjoy your style. Now down to business:
I want to get your opinion on the Paul Williams-Kermit Cintron matchup (HBO) this weekend in Carson, Calif.; based off The Punisher’s last performance against Sergio Martinez I think he is going to have a difficult time with Cintron over the course of 12 rounds, especially if Cintron creates enough space and decides to box and keep Williams at a distance. (I'm taking Cintron by UD). I'm also excited to see Martin Honorio bang it out against Argenis Mendez. I don’t know much about Argenis but I do know Honorio can throw bombs and box, remember when he took the Covina, Calif.-prospect John Molina Jr. to school on a ShoBox card a few months ago?
I’ll be watching the fight in person from the “nose-bleed” at The Home Depot Center this Saturday. If there is any extra space down there in press-row for a hardcore fight fan let me know! It’d be an honor to sit next to my all time favorite boxing writer. -- Saul
Thanks for the kind words, Saul. Y’know the “nosebleed” seats in the outdoor tennis arena of the Home Depot Center are pretty darn good.
I hope there’s a decent crowd there tomorrow night because I think the fans are going to be treated to a few good scraps. The main event will be the best of them.
You’re not alone in thinking that Cintron can pull the upset. (MaxBoxing scribe Gabe Montoya is going with “the Killer,” as are many fans who have emailed me.) It’s not inconceivable. Williams’ is coming off a grueling 12-round fight (vs. Sergio Martinez), one where his chin was dented a bit. He might be vulnerable right now.
But I’m going with the chalk in this matchup. I think P-Will is young enough (28) to bounce back from a tough ring battle and put forth another hard fight. I don’t think he’s going to let Cintron breathe let alone establish enough space to box from the outside. I think Williams’ mentality will result in some heated exchanges (Cintron has been known to battle back vs. guys who get in his grill as his 10-round war with David Estrada proved) but ultimately the torrid pace he sets will take over the fight. I’m going to go with Williams by decision. I think he’ll dominate the late rounds of the fight.
I like Honorio in the 130-pound matchup with Mendez, who might be the most talented fighter the Mexican spoiler has faced. But as you stated, Honorio can box and bang, and the man possesses excellent stamina. Mendez, who had an excellent amateur career, is faster and more athletic, but the fact that this is a 12-round fight, makes me favor the veteran. Honorio by decision.
How are you? It's been a little while since I've wrote you. I don't really want to get too much into this, but I enjoyed reading your article on this past weekend’s fight between Floyd Mayweather and Shane Mosley. I have to admit, after reading your mailbags and seeing how much faith you had in Mosley (as well as how highly critical you are of Mayweather), you were one of the first, if not THE first, writers I was eager to hear from. More so than anything, I knew you wouldn't use Mosley being 38 as an excuse because the reality is, even those who picked Mayweather to win did so believing it would be competitive and that Mosley was still one of the best, if not THE best, welterweights out there.
Anyway... the sport of boxing needs future stars, Dougie. I had some friends that, for whatever reason, suffered through the Bernard Hopkins-Roy Jones Jr. fight a while back. I couldn't believe they actually paid money to see that, but the reality is that there are few fighters out there now with mainstream appeal. The sport’s BIGGEST stars are most likely at the tail end of their careers. Floyd Mayweather is 33 years old. Manny Pacquiao is not far behind and is also running for political office in the Philippines. Shane Mosley may very well retire now after such a one-sided loss. Just who has the potential to be the next household name/pay-per-view star? Of course we all know of one guy who HAD that kind of potential, but we won't mention his name. Please give me your thoughts, Doug. Thanks. -- Jamar Kareen Ellis
I’ll say his name. Had Edwin Valero not been plagued/haunted by so many issues, he could have been this era’s Roberto Duran.
A young gun who could have played Sugar Ray Leonard to Valero’s Duran, Timothy Bradley, has potential. However, because he lacks a certain degree of charisma he’ll need dance partners to get the attention he deserves. Marcos Maidana would’ve been the perfect foil because they would have produced a fun battle on HBO. There are other names in the 140-pound division but I don’t think many (save for Devon Alexander) will risk their records vs. Bradley so a 147-pound showdown with fellow undefeated titleholder Andre Berto could be the launch pad both young men are looking for. Whoever wins that fight could position himself as a fill-in opponent for either Pacquiao or Mayweather, an instant-star-making opportunity if there ever was one. (If Alexander is given an opportunity he could develop into a major player, too, by the way.)
The winner of the Super Six tournament, especially if Andre Ward emerges as the man, also has potential. If whoever wins the Super Six takes on Lucian Bute and a comebacking Joe Calzaghe at 168 pounds, the winner of that series could step up to light heavyweight and face the winner of Chad Dawson-Jean Pascal (which will hopefully be for THE RING 175-pound title). The winner of that light heavyweight showdown, my friend, can emerge as a star because there will be plenty of hungry young guns for him to defend his title against (Tavoris Cloud, Chris Henry, Nathan Cleverly, Ismayl Sillakh).
And I think a new Mexican idol is on the way. It could be Alfred Angulo if he can get a 154-pound fight with Antonio Margarito (assuming the Mexican mauler gets past Roberto Garcia) and win (that showdown would fill Staples Center). It could be Abner Mares if the 24-year-old contender can beat very tough Yohhny Perez on May 22. Mares has a lot of potential dance partners at 118 pounds (Fernando Montiel, Nonito Donaire, Vic Darchinyan, and Joseph Agbeko to name a few). If he can beat these vets (no easy task), it says here that he becomes the most popular Mexican bantamweight since Carlos Zarate (or at least Lupe Pintor).
It will take some time, but trust me, somebody will emerge.
It was nice to finally meet you at the Latin Fury 14 press conference in LA. Just wanted to say that not much attention was paid to Roberto “Amenaza” Garcia during his camp because everyone seems focused on Margarito's return and his hand wrap scandal. This might be a good thing for Roberto because he is SERIOUSLY ready for this fight and no one seems to realize that he is a serious "amenaza" to all of Marg’s plans. He, his promoter, members of the media, and other well respected trainers talk about future fights, world title fights. I hope they are willing to go through with all of those plans with one more loss on his record because he is going to get KTFO. Peace Doug, thanks for always keeping it real. I'm off to Aguascalientes. -- Eric, Sylmar CA
You’re going to have a great time, Eric. I wish I could clone myself and send a “dupe” down to Mexico for Margarito-Garcia. That’s going to be a hell of a fight in a great atmosphere. I was there (doing the broadcast for a Jorge Arce-headlined Latin Fury) two years ago and I really enjoyed the festivities of the big state fair and the energy from the live crowd in the Roman coliseum-style bull ring.
If Margarito can beat a motivated Garcia after more than 16 months out of the ring and after getting his ass kicked in his last fight I will be impressed. I know how strong (in body and will) Garcia is and I know the young man can scrap AND box. He’s a smart guy. I’ve seen him go to war with vets like Alfred Angulo and young guns like Shawn Estrada in sparring, so I won’t be surprised if he tees off on Margarito.
I tell you what, if Garcia does upset Margarito it will be the second time in less than a month that Top Rank got one of its name fighter’s knocked off (Kelly Pavlik is the other one). I’m just wondering, like I always do, if fans and my fellow fight scribes will point this out and place blame on the promoter’s choices the way many would if Golden Boy Promotions was involved.
I for one loved the fight this past weekend and thought it was Mayweather’s best performance ever. It hurt me to say that. Moving on… Do you think that HBO would ever take a hard line stance on the issue of Manny and Floyd? What I am asking is, do you think the brass over at HBO would refuse to air any bout but Manny vs Floyd thus forcing the fight? As the paymasters of boxing it would be interesting to see someone stand up for the fans. -- Frank
Don’t hold your breath, Frank. For starters, it’s not a network’s place to force any fight to happen. They can sweeten the prospect of a certain matchup by promising to come out of the pocket and put their marketing muscle behind the promotion but they can’t -- and shouldn’t -- make ultimatums.
Besides, as crazy as Arum-ageddon can be, I think if HBO drew a line in the sand the Big Bob Man would take his Pac-ball and go play somewhere else, and I don’t think they want that to happen.
MAYWEATHER-MOSLEY PPV NUMBERS
If internet rumors (big “if” I know) are true and Floyd vs Shane did between 1.1 and 1.2 million buys and Pac v. Cotto did 1.25 million do you think Mayweather would still demand over 50% to fight Pacquaio? That split would be the only big dealbreaker for Mayweather v. Pacquaio.
I believe Pac will take whatever tests he needs to, eventually. He seems to be affected by the fans' outcry and is softening his stance. I think both men want the fight, they just don't want to give any edge to the other. If Pac tells himself he is trying to please his fans as opposed to just simply caving into Floyd's demands, he will feel alright about taking the tests. I don't think Floyd Jr. himself is actually even worried about Pacquiao being on PEDs, he was just trying to get a psychological advantage or stall for later in the year. March would have been a quick turnaround for Floyd after Marquez. He got himself another month or so, and another big payday to boot.
Crossing my fingers. -- Jonathan from Chicago
I hope you’re right about Pacquiao and Mayweather being able to work out their drug-testing impasse because I think that’s the biggest roadblock to Megafight 2010 happening, not the purse split. I don’t think Pacquiao is going to back off from the 14-day cutoff he set earlier in the year and I believe the Mayweather clan (and, sadly, a lot of boxing fans, media and insiders) believe the Filipino icon is on some kind of PED.
But I hope I’m wrong.
Regarding the purse split, I still think Mayweather will be difficult. In his mind HE was the sole reason the Marquez fight did 1 million and I’m sure he believes all 1.1 or 1.2 million buys for the Mosley fight were his fans (or “haters”), just as I‘m sure he thinks that Cotto helped Pacquiao get the 1.25 million their show did.
Beyond the drug testing and the money, there’s the location of the fight (Arum wants it at Cowboy Stadium; GBP wants it in Vegas) and the clash of multi-millionaire egos (Mayweather, Pacquiao, Arum, De La Hoya, Schaefer, Haymon). I don’t know, dude, I think it’s a real longshot that this fight happens.
its a shame that all this mosley/may hoopla overshadowed any talk of fernando montiel. dougie, my man, these were considered the best 118 punders in the world. hozumi hasegawa vs fernando montiel. hozumi hasegawa was going for, i believe his 11th or 12 defense of his bantanweight wbc title. we have this kid in montiel travel to japan to face the formidable champ in hasegawa and kayo the guy in front of 15000 japanese fans. not only did he ko the guy, it was reported that montiel broke hasegawas jaw. now, thats a real accomplishment. its sad when all the nonsense talk is focused on the may/mosley sleeper and montiels accomplishment is put to the side. very sad. -- ricky in south el monte, ca
I agree, even though I was part of the problem by sleeping on the matchup prior to Saturday. (I was busy as hell in Las Vegas, but I did watch the fight live via the internet very early Saturday morning).
Montiel’s performance surprised and impressed me greatly. To be honest, with his accomplishments I believe Saturday’s victory was enough to earn him a lower top-10 pound-for-pound ranking. I was disappointed he didn’t make it into THE RING’s P4P ratings. I think he’s more deserving than Celestino Caballero (No. 10) and Nonito Donaire (No. 4), who has probably benefited more from a single victory (Darchinyan back in 2007) than any fighter in the past 10 years.
I’d love to see a Donaire-Montiel showdown at 118.
SORRY ABOUT THE MAY-FANS
I have been reading your articles and mailbags for years and I think you are by far the best boxing writer I've ever read, but I was never motivated to write in until now. The Mayweather fans are the worst, the single most obnoxious group of people on the internet and that is saying something. I'm so sorry you have to deal with their insipid opinions as part of your job. Their arrogance is really out of control, and like you said, they are Mayweather without all the talent. He's hard to deal with. They're unbearable. This whole idea that if you dislike someone for being childish and arrogant there's something wrong with you is INFURIATING. The word “hater” is so annoying. They should just say what they mean, which is "if you don't think like us, you don't have the right to say anything". Don't let a__holes like that get you down or ever prevent you from expressing your opinion. -- Joe from NYC
Thanks for the nice words and the encouragement, Joe. Honestly, the Mayweather fans haven’t been that bad (either that or I’m so used to dealing with a__holes that I don’t even notice them that much). It seems like I’ve received just as many emails like yours as I have the “Take that, hater!” emails from Floyd’s fans.
So I’d like to give a very sincere THANK YOU to everyone who has sent me a kind note over the past month (regarding my sister-in-law’s passing, the Valero horrors, and post-Mayweather-Mosley).
YOUR TOP P4P 20
Hey Dougie, what's good?
In your last mailbag you wrote that Mayweather would not get into your all-time top 20 P4P at present. So who's in the list? I'm not a Mayweather fanboy (Chad Dawson is my guy), just a curious who you'd pick.
How about Bradley vs Berto at Welterweight?
What's your thoughts on Katsidis vs Mitchell? I like Katsidis, he's got a lot of heart, but if it goes to the cards Mitchell will most likely get a hometown decision. There might just be too much Katsidis on that night (coming into fights at 150lbs! WOW!). Hope you can catch this one in the US. -- Akhil, UK
I hope so too. Katsidis is must-see TV. Mitchell’s a solid pro and a good boxer, but I favor the Aussie-Greek warrior via close decision or late stoppage.
Berto-Bradley? Where can I buy tickets? You know, they fought in the finals of a national amateur tournament when both were teens and heard it was a hell of a fight (narrowly won by Berto).
Like former cohort Steve Kim has been saying the winner of this potnetial matchup is a worthy stay-busy opponent for Mayweather or Pacquiao if the two superstars can’t come to terms on their fight this year.
It takes some time to compile a decent all-time list and adequately explain why you ranked them where you did, but it’s not hard to come up with the best of the best if you’re an amateur historian like I try to be. Here are 20 “old-timers” that are literally off the top of my head. They aren’t ranked or in any particular order but I wouldn‘t have a hard time telling anyone why I think they should be in the list: Ray Robinson, Willie Pep, Sam Langford, Henry Armstrong, Harry Greb, Mickey Walker, Benny Leonard, Ezzard Charles, Sandy Saddler, Muhammad Ali, Joe Louis, Jack Johnson, Tony Canzoneri, Ray Leonard, Barney Ross, Emile Griffith, Lou Ambers, Archie Moore, Salvador Sanchez, and Gene Tunney.
My next 10 would include all-timers like Tommy Loughran, Jimmy McLarnin, Tiger Flowers, Kid Chocolate, Fidel Labarba, Bob Fitzsimmons, Joe Gans, Sammy Angott, Kid Gavilan, and Billy Graham.