Doug Fischer

Dougie’s Friday mailbag

FIGHTER OF THE YEAR

How you doing Douglas?

Just a few points I want to mention:

1. Even before I read the Monday Mailbag, Nonito Donaire already had my vote for Fighter of the Year.

Not only does he fight the best available competition but he actually fights more than once or twice a year.

And although he doesn’t always thrill the crowds he still convincingly gets the job done. I think his detractors should just screw off.

2. Brandon Rios is an uncaged animal in that ring but to already compare him to J.C. Chavez Sr. like some fans are doing is ridiculous. And I’m not sure that beating a good but hardly elite fighter like Mike Alvarado means he’s ready to take on Manny Pacquiao. Not yet anyways.

3. Like many fans I’m hoping for Erik Morales to pull it off one more time and win the World 140-pound title. It’s probably unlikely but then, no one expected the old vet to last past the first several rounds against Marcos Maidana either. I’m not writing off “El Terrible” yet.

4. As for the Devon Alexander-Randall Bailey fight I think that Devon reminds me of boxers like Nonito Donaire and Chad Dawson. Like those guys, DA fights one top guy after another but gets ripped by these king-s__t fans for not brawling and bleeding all over the ring.

Look at this way. Devon was regarded as a gutless jellyfish for appearing to quit against Tim Bradley. Understandable. But straight afterwards Dev showed how “gutless” he truly is by squaring off against brutal punchers Lucas Matthysse and Marcos Maidana. And now he’s going after Bailey, another power puncher.

I’m not going to say who wins this one. DA is much stronger at 147 pounds but so is Bailey. Considering Dev’s sheer dislike for the guy along with Bailey’s crippling punch, anything could happen here.

5. Concerning Todd The Terminator. I know who the guy is and I’m not too big on some of his boneheaded comments either. Still I have to laugh at some of his detractors who suddenly bring him up and bitch about his weekly rants even though he now hasn’t been around in the past few weeks. It’s happened before too.

Do they miss him or what?

I guess I’ll call it a total wrap up. Don’t work too hard. See ya. – Dave

I’m trying hard to slack off as much as possible but boxing (and life) won’t let me! (There’s a bag of comic books that I bought last week sitting near my desk that I STILL haven’t peeked at.)

Anyway, I’ll answer your points in the order you gave them:

1. I’m glad I brought up the Fighter of the Year award in the Monday mailbag because I honestly can’t think of anyone more deserving than Donaire, and I’m pleasantly surprised that most of the hardcore heads out there agree. Oh, I also think that Donaire’s detractors need to screw off.

2. Rios is a beast but he’s no Chavez. He’ll need to win titles in two more weight classes, make a butt-load of defenses, and beat this era’s equivalents of Rocky Lockridge, Roger Mayweather, Edwin Rosario, Meldrick Taylor and Jose Luis Ramirez (if they indeed exist) before I even put him in the same sentence as the Mexican hall of famer.

3. If you’re real fight fan, you won’t allow yourself to count Morales out. Even THE RING editor Michael Rosenthal, who always preaches not to make “heart picks” when predicting the outcome of a fight, can’t help but go with his gut and pick Morales to upset the young champion tomorrow night. My question for you is does Morales’ positive test for a banned substance change the way you feel about him going into this fight?

4. I’m expecting Alexander to outclass Bailey in a generally uneventful fight. (If it somehow becomes eventful, I think my fellow Missourian will be in trouble.) I’m not a big fan of Alexander’s style but I personally like the young man and I have a lot of respect for him as a boxer and a competitor because he’s obviously willing to fight anyone in the divisions he occupies. I thought Alexander lost to Matthysse and did a little too much grappling in the Maidana fight, but I gotta give him props for fighting two bonebreakers in back-to-back fights (after facing four consecutive RING-rated fighters). And I have to note that he came on strong in the final rounds against both Argentine badasses. The “king-s__t fans” who rip Alexander need to screw off with Donaire’s detractors.

5. I’ve noticed a Todd-The-Terminator obsession with some fans who like to leave Facebook comment at the bottom of the mailbags. I don’t get it. Like you said, I don’t include Todd’s emails in every bag. Maybe they’re jealous of the attention he’s received during previous months. Maybe they really do miss TTT. I could state that they should screw off along with the Donaire detractors and Alexander rippers, but I think I’ll just punish them (or give them what they want) by running one of Todd’s rants in this mailbag.

RED OCTOBER

Hey Dougie,

Starting with Brandon Rios’ head-pounding win over Mike Alvarado:

Rios is indeed one crazy-ass bastard who appears to get his rocks off on getting punched in the face and throwing it right back. And man, that massive right cross of his just hits like a friggin’ anvil! Just ask Alvarado!

And you know what? I’ll give him a good puncher’s chance of possibly upending either Manny Pacquiao or JMM. After all those two aren’t getting any younger. And Rios is obviously much stronger at 140 as opposed to 135.

Moving onto to Danny Garcia-Eric Morales. If this was a junior-welter version of the same Morales who waged war against Jesus Chavez and Marco Antonio Barrera I’d pick El Terrible by one-sided beatdown. But that version is long gone. Hey, we all know what a long, grinding and brutal road Morales’ career has been, even before he ran into Manny Pacquiao. Never mind El Terrible’s more recent war with Marcos Maidana in which his one eyes was left looking like a shiny, black coconut; or the first punishing fight with Garcia.

As it is, Garcia’s now riding high after blasting out Amir Khan. I’d like to see Morales back up Father Time once more but that’s probably wishful thinking on my part. If it is indeed a crushing loss for the old warhorse I hope he’ll take the hint and retire his brave, stubborn ass. S__t I don’t think that even Gatti took that overall amount of punishment!

And the Alexander-Bailey fight? Al is certainly no Morales but he has that Morales-like tendency to face constantly dangerous opposition. In good ol’ crunch power alone Al’s last two opponents, Lucas Matthysse and Marcos Maidana plus Randal Bailey are as heavy-hitting a line-up you’ll get in any division.

Nevertheless if neither Matthysse nor Maidana could knock out Alexander I don’t think Bailey will either. Especially considering how much stronger Al is at Welter. Plus Bailey doesn’t exactly have a George Chuvalo chin. My pick is Al by either late round TKO or clear cut UD.

Oh and one more thing Dougie. This is to brain-dead “top commentators” Jim Parkinson and Bar Kockba (did I spell that right? Oh who cares!). Are you two fruitcakes trying to latch on to my nuts or what? You both keep obsessively carrying on about me even though I haven’t been around in awhile. Talk about pathetic! And what’s with your constant mentioning of guys’ panties and GBP employees in fish-net stockings? Piss off and keep your perverted little fantasies to yourselves you putrid, s__t-faced retards!

OK Mr. Doug I’m off. Cheers! – Todd The Terminator

Well stated, Todd. Well, not really, but I can’t blame you for firing back at your demented fan club members. Hey, that’s your public! This is the price of fame (or whatever you call getting noticed and s__t on by fellow fight fans in the sheltered online world of internet boxing communities).

I’m picking Alexander (you’re not going to get me to call him “Al”) by unanimous decision but I think he can get the late stoppage if he commits to Randall’s body enough in the early and middle rounds.

I like that you and Dave recognize the string of quality (and dangerous) opponents that Alexander has faced in the past four years. I hope others have noticed. Alexander’s run is even more impressive when you keep his age in mind. The St. Louis native turned 25 in February. He’s been facing world-class opposition without any “gimmes” since he was 21, an age when most boxers – even the top talents – are still considered prospects and are still being carefully matched by their management and promoters.

I can’t think of any boxer who has been in as many 12-round world-class battles as Morales. Not from this era, anyway. As much as Gatti is idolized, most of his ring wars were shootouts that ended in middle-rounds stoppages or 10-round bouts (such as the five fightts he had with Ivan Robinson and Micky Ward). Morales has been in so many grueling championship slugfests even hardcore fans forget about his tough fights with Wayne McCullough, InJin Chi, David Diaz and Guty Espadas Jr. (the first bout). Kudos to you for remembering the Jesus Chavez fight. Hell, the Pablo Cesar Cano fight was tough on the old man. I have to imagine that the wear and tear from the dramatic clash with Maidana had something to do with his struggle with the unheralded youth.

And you’re right, the first bout with Garcia took a visible toll on El Terrible. How many times can Morales go to the well? I think the well is dry. He knows how to beat Garcia but even though he claims to be in better condition for this fight I don’t think he has the reflexes to take advantage of the young man’s technical flaws consistently enough to control the fight.

Having said that, even though his body is all but shot, he’s still Erik Morales. He still has the iron will of a born warrior. It says here that he gives Garcia hell before getting clipped and downed or merely outpointed again.

And if Morales proves me wrong, I’ll have only two things to say: Viva Mexico! And bring on Brandon Rios!

RIOS-ALVARADO

Doug,

The Rios/Alvarado fight brought 2 questions to mind:

1. With a lot of people saying Rios/Alvarado cannot be in the same class as Gatti/Ward or Castillo/Corrales because it didn’t last long enough and knowing what we know now about concussions and brain injuries, no referee (except Steve Smoger) would have let that fight continue. Do you think we may never again see lengthy knock-down-drag ‘em-out-brawls, like the previously mentioned? Is this the new standard?

2. Can we petition to get Smoger to ref the rematch?

Thanks. – S.M.

Thanks for the short two-questioner, S.M.

I don’t think “lengthy knock-down-drag ‘em-out-brawls” on the level Gatti-Ward I and Corrales-Castillo I are going to go the way of 15-round title bouts, but I do believe they will be less frequent than in previous decades. And I think it’s because referees are more educated about head injuries, as you noted. Two bouts that featured brutal and fierce back-and-forth action this year – the Orlando Salido-JuanMa Lopez rematch and Rios-Alvarado – were stopped the moment one of the combatants was badly rocked and against the ropes. I think we’re going to see more of this and it’s for the best. The action fighters in the game will have longer careers and hopefully healthier post-boxing lives.

I think we’ll still get the occasional “lengthy knock-down-drag ‘em-out-brawls” most of us crave every now and then when two volume-punching brawlers with world-class chins go at it.

As for your suggestion of starting a petition to get Smoger the Rios-Alvarado II assignment all I have to say is that you, sir, a sadistic, blood thirsty ghoul. However, if that petition were to land in my hands, I’d probably sign it.

HOW GOOD IS DAVID PRICE?

Hi Dougie,

Not that the weekend’s destruction of Audley Harrison is anything to go by but I think David Price is a serious player in the HW division. He packs a wicked punch and uses his height and reach extremely well.

Looking at the current top-10 Ring mag heavies (and obviously removing the K-Bros from the equation) I think there’s an argument to be made that Price would pose quite a serious problem for any of them.

How do you think Price would fair against:

(1) Povetkin (I’m just not convinced this guy is the 3rd best heavy on the planet. I can picture any of the top ten apart from Chagaev beating him.)

(2) Adamek (Adamek struggled with Grant & Price is way better than Grant)

(3) Haye (This could be an interesting fight if Haye fought aggressively. If he fights to survive like against Wlad I think Price wins.)

(4) Pulev (Pulev is hard to judge – I think he’s got good skills and solid amateur pedigree – Pulev may box his way to a points win.)

(5) Helenius (Just can’t see this fight going the distance one way or the other but I think Price takes it with cleaner punches.)

What do you make of Tyson Fury’s very vocal, provocative outbursts regarding Price… Is he hyping a potential show-down or is he not so confident that things would go his way should they meet? Would love to see the fight though.

Love the mail-bags – keep up the great work! Cheers. – Stephen, Cape Town, South Africa

Thanks Stephen.

I think David Price is the best heavyweight prospect out there (or perhaps another way to describe him is the top big man who isn’t currently ranked by THE RING). He’s very close, however.

And I certainly would not count him out against the ranked contenders you mentioned in your email. Price has got the size of a modern heavyweight and he knows how to use his height and reach to his full advantage. He’s got good technique, deceptively quick hands and very accurate power shots.

I think he’s been brought along very well and he’s far more developed than fellow 2008 Olympic bronze medalist Deontay Wilder. However, Price has the same problem that plagues his American counterpart: he hasn’t gone many rounds. Price has only fought past four rounds once – a six-round decision over journeyman Daniil Peretyatko in 2010.

If he were to fight domestic rival Tyson Fury in his next fight, one of the advantages I’d give Fury would be the fact that the giant Irishman has fought eight rounds or more on four occasions.

I don’t think Tyson’s taunts are an indication that he’s nervous about one day facing Price. He’s just a brash young fighter (still somewhat immature at 24) who wants attention and believes that he can beat the Olympian. Hopefully we’ll see that fight when the time is right. I don’t think that time is now or even in 2013 (unless it’s towards the end of next year).

STANDING 8 COUNT

Dougie,

First time writing, longtime fan. One question remains at the forefront of my mind in watching the thrilling battle that was Rios-Alvarado. Is there not the ability for the ref to issue a standing 8 count to a fighter who is clearly out on their feet?

I’ve noticed a few recent fights where I felt the action was stopped just a little prematurely. In these instances, I felt the fighter should have been given a standing count, thus briefly stopping the action, protecting the fighter, and awarding the aggressor the credit for the devastating knockdown that might, just as soon, come.

I think Alvarado, specifically, could have held on that last round if he actually was dropped and able to breathe a moment. I also think that had he been smarter, or had the opportunity, he’d taken a knee, and been allowed to continue. I agree, the ref needed to do something, but a stoppage robbed Alvarado of the chance to display his ability to return from adversity. So my question is, why don’t we see more standing 8 counts as we see stoppages, and could it have applied in this fight?Thanks – DJ Taino from ‘The BX’

Thank you for finally writing in, Mr. DJ. I hope you’ll do again soon.

The Standing 8 Count, once a standard part of pro boxing in the U.S., was pushed out of the American fight scene when the Unified Rules of Boxing were adopted for all title bouts and major fights. I think it still exists in some U.S. jurisdictions but state rules seldom apply to fights that are high-profile enough to be on TV.

For younger fans who weren’t around when this rule was still in effect, the Standing 8 Count was like a technical knockdown that the referee could call when a fighter was in trouble. It was basically abolished for two reasons:

1. Proponents of fighter safety argued that it led to needless damage by prolonging a punishing fight. Fighters who were taking beatings lasted longer than they should have because the Standing 8 Count gave them a brief periods to recuperate. A fighter who would have suffered one concussion had the fight been allowed to progress until he was dropped or stopped would theoretically suffer multiple concussions in a fight where one or more Standing 8 Counts were administered.  

2. Trainers and cornermen of the fighters who “scored” the Standing 8 Counts by hurting (but not dropping) their opponents were upset because they believed their fighters were often being robbed of the knockdown, knockout or TKO due to the breaks in action the Standing 8 caused. Their guy would have the opponent rocked and reeling and all of the sudden the ref would separate them and start counting, killing his momentum and giving the hurt fighter a “breather.”

I agree with both arguments and I think the sport is safer without the Standing 8.   

 

 

Email Dougie at dfischer@ringtv.com. Follow him on Twitter @dougiefischer

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