Doug Fischer

Dougie’s Friday mailbag

DOES MONTIEL HAVE A CHANCE?

What up my dude!! How’s it going?

I’ll make it real short and simple: Is Nonito Donaire simply too big, fast, and strong for my boy Fernando Montiel? Even though Fernie is far more experienced and he’s faced far tougher opposition, it just seems he might come up short… fingers crossed… All the best. — Adrian H., Milwaukee, WI

I’m going with Donaire by hard-fought decision in a thriller (check out my Head to head feature for an idea of how I think the fight may transpire), but I’m not super confident in that pick. Montiel can be a hot-and-cold fighter but when he’s on, man, that little Mexican is awesome.

Of course, Donaire’s height, reach, speed and power will trouble Montiel, but the veteran has moves that will challenge the budding Filipino star in ways he’s never experienced. And I think you and I both know that Montiel’s hook is a game changer. Hozumi Hasegawa was doing well until he was clipped by that punch with eight seconds remaining in the fourth round. Montiel only needs one opening to turn things around. That’s why this is such a fascinating machup.

So to answer you question directly, no, Donaire is not too big, fast and strong for your boy. Montiel can definitely win this fight.

MONTIEL BY KO

Hey Dougie,

I just thought I’d give my 2 cents on this upcoming fight. I got to give major props to all sides behind this fight from the fighters to HBO and the promoters for making it happen. I was planning on going but work has kept me from attending unfortunately.

I just reviewed these guys’ last fights and while Donaire is exceptionally gifted he does seem to be a bit sloppy in there at times and I think his last few opponents have either not had the skill or power to make him pay. Well, Montiel has both — and in abundance. Montiel looked extraordinary in dispatching Hasegawa and with his edges in experience and versatility, I’m thinking Montiel catches Donaire coming in and knocks him out.

I can’t wait to see either one of these guys take on the Agbeko-Mares winner. This is a great fight between two exceptional talents in their primes with great opportunities for the winner. What more can you ask for? — Kyle from AZ

Nothing. That’s why I’m just going to sit back with good friends and enjoy every minute of Saturday’s HBO broadcast (RingTV.com co-editor Michael Rosenthal in Las Vegas covering the fight from press row).

I agree that Donaire can get sloppy at times and that Montiel is one of the few bantamweights who can make him pay for his various technical flaws/bad habits. However, while I agree that Montiel’s KO victory over Hasegawa was mad impressive, I believe the Japanese titleholder could have controlled the action better (and perhaps avoided that killer-hook at the end of the fourth round) had he utilized a crisp jab (instead of pawing with it).

And I noticed that Donaire (who sometimes paws with his jab or neglects it altogether) used his jab well in his last fight (the bludgeoning of Wladimir Sidorenko). He also kept his hands up more, straightened up his punches and put combinations together. Now, I’m not saying that Sidorenko is in Montiel’s class, but I do believe that a taller, rangier boxer with comparable speed and reflexes to Montiel will give the Mexican veteran a tough time — provided he uses a consistent jab and boxes a disciplined fight.

We’ll see if Donaire can do that, or if the Filipino Flash finds another way to beat Montiel.

Whatever happens, like you, I want to see the winner of tomorrow’s fight take on the winner of Agbeko-Mares. These two bantamweight bouts are the fights that I’m most looking forward to this year, so far.

DONAIRE LIKE A YOUNG DE LA HOYA

Hey Doug,
Haven’t written you in a while, so I hope everything’s good with you. I’m excited about the Donaire/Montiel fight this weekend. I’m actually gonna be there, so hopefully I can buy you beer or whatever your drink of choice is. I like Donaire in this matchup, probably by close but clear-cut decision. Donaire’s style reminds me a lot of a young Oscar De La Hoya, even the way they’re moving him up reminds me of Oscar (drying him out at smaller weights). What’s your official pick for this fight?

Also, I had to laugh at the reader who mentioned in the Monday Mailbag that Donaire tried to lie about his past. Didn’t Vanilla Ice try this in the early 90′s?? Hopefully, Nonito doesn’t also come up with a story about Don King’s henchmen dangling him over a balcony…– Chris (Los Angeles)

LOL. That won’t happen. I don’t think Donaire is looking for “street cred.”

He is, however, looking for De La Hoya-level success. If he can win tomorrow’s fight impressively (and my “official” pick is the same as yours, by the way) he’s at least in position to try. He’s got the dance partners (Montiel, the Agbeko-Mares winner, JuanMa Lopez, Yuriorkis Gamboa). I think he’s got De La Hoya’s charisma, but I’m not sure if he’s got the Golden Boy’s pre-welterweight technique (which was very tight — sometimes too tight) or his iron chin. The Montiel fight should tell us more about Donaire than any of his previous fights.

Anyway, enjoy the live atmosphere tomorrow night. I won’t be there but be sure to pour some beer out for this homie (I guess I’m the one who’s looking for street cred).

DISTRACTED DONAIRE?

Donaire seems to be distracted by his recent family problems. Going into a fight with Montiel is the wrong time to be distracted! Montiel’s come a long way from the times that he has frozen up on B.A.D. — Fleetwood

I agree that Montiel has advanced far beyond the wide-eyed kid who let “Too Sharp” Johnson get into his head and was clearly intimidated by the size of Jhonny Gonzalez. The Johnson fight didn’t happen too long after his fight with Pedro Alcazar, who died two days after the bout. There had to be some psychological baggage from that experience (and the fact that Too Sharp had beat one of his uncles back in the DC native’s Inglewood Forum days probably didn’t help matters).

I admit, I thought Montiel was going to look like a 118-pound version of Sugar Ray Leonard against the gritty and powerful but one-dimensional Gonzalez. Man, was I wrong. LOL. Montiel laid a stank-ass egg in the open air of the Home Depot Center’s outdoor tennis arena. Looking back on that fight, I don’t think Montiel was ready to step up to bantamweight.

Now he’s naturally grown into the weight and can probably comfortably carry 122 pounds. He looks a lot thicker in his chest and back. I’d say that’s bad news for Donaire but I think the Filipino Flash can comfortably carry 126 pounds.

And I seriously doubt that Donaire is going to let his family drama effect his focus going into the biggest fight of his life. If he does, he’s not the star everyone thinks he can be, because to be quite honest, I don’t see what the big deal is. Maybe I just grew up in a really dysfunctional family but the issues Donaire has with his parents and his brother seem pretty mild compared most people I know, and certainly compared to certain boxers such Roy Jones Jr., Gerry Cooney, Wilfredo Benitez and the late Jerry Quarry. Now those guys had a right to complain about their fathers.

UPCOMING FIGHTS

Hi ya Doug,
What are the fights you would most like to see made in the second half of the year?

There are some good fights over the next couple of months of course, Montiel vs Donaire this weekend and then there’s Miguel Acosta vs Brandon Rios (and later in the year Humberto Soto vs Urbano Antillon II — and hopefully the winners will face of), Guerrero vs Katsidis, Vitali Klitshko vs Orlandier Solis should be entertaining if Solis is in shape, Segura vs Calderon II (props to Calderon for taking the fight in Mexico), Yuriorkis Gamboa vs Jorge Solis and Hozumi Hasegawa vs Jhonny Gonzalez should be a fun fights. What are your thoughts on these fights?

I think Acosta is underrated in both in skill and power will beat Rios and it will be interesting to see what effect the Marquez fight had on Katsidis.


It’s a shame that Morales and Barrera can’t retire and stay retired the way Ricardo Lopez, Humberto Gonzalez and Daniel Zaragoza all did after their amazing careers. Gonzalez retired after a loss in the Fight of the Year against Saman Sorjaturong, Lopez went out while he was still a technical wizard with knockout power and Zaragoza gave a young Morales all he could take before getting stopped in the 11th round in a classic fight.


Hope you get to enjoy this weekend’s fights! Cheers. — Nicholas

I most certainly will, Nick. I think one reason Morales and Barrera have come back is that they made more money during their primes than the three hall of famers you mentioned and they can still make some pretty good dough. Morales is guaranteed $1 million for the Maidana fight (plus a piece of the PPV upside and probably a portion of the Mexican TV money). They were also bigger attractions (although “Chiquita” had a pretty dedicated following). It’s hard to walk away from fame and money.

I’m looking forward to all of the fights that you mentioned, although I’m not convinced that Gamboa-Solis, Klitschko-Solis, or Katsids-Guerrero will be action fights. It takes two to tango, buddy.

Montiel-Donaire is going to be high-quality boxing. Acosta-Rios is going to be dream boxer-vs.-pressure fighter match. It might be better than Soto-Antillon I. I was picking Acosta to beat Rios, because let’s face it, the Venezuelan has the style to do it, but I think “Bam Bam” is well prepared for this opportunity and most importantly, his head appears to be in a good place. I like Rios by close decision or late stoppage in a very, very good fight.

I think Soto and Segura will repeat in entertaining rematches.

I like Hasegawa over Gonzalez by knockout.

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