Doug Fischer

Dougie’s Monday mailbag

BRONER’S A BUST

So Adrien Broner won a split decision against Paulie Malignaggi and is proud of that performance? That’s embarrassing considering all the hype! I was expecting a dominating knockout win! Paulie’s a solid fighter but one who makes elite fighters look great. Miguel Cotto, Ricky Hatton, and Amir Khan all dominated him with the latter two finishing him off! Clearly AB is not on the level of those guys and cannot yet be considered elite if he ever gets there.

And I don’t wanna here how AB jumped 2 weight classes, yada yada yada….. He was still clearly the bigger man in the ring. He moved up to welterweight yes, but fought a guy with featherweight power! After that performance I can see why he skipped the 140-pound division and has no desire to challenge Floyd Mayweather…at this point I’d pick a lot of guys at 140 and 147 to handle Mr. Hype – Lucas Matthysse, Danny Garcia, Amir Khan, Lamont Peterson, Brandon Rios, Mike Alvarado, Victor Ortiz, Devon Alexander, Keith Thurman, Carlos Abregu, Pacman, Tim Bradley, Juan Manuel Marquez to name a few.

I mean Paulie was coming off a gift against the guy who lost to the fossil of Shane Mosley!! Overrated!!! I read a rumour that Garcia is passing on Matty to rematch Judah??? Please tell me this is not true! Matty deserves that fight!

What round do you think GGG finishes off the tough and likeable but unfortunately soon to be outgunned Matthew Macklin? – Brian, Aylmer

Brian, I am a big fan and believer of Gennady Golovkin (as most of you know), but I don’t think you’re giving Macklin enough respect (just as too many fans and members of the media completely discounted Malignaggi going into the Broner fight). Yes, I favor the undefeated middleweight puncher from Kazakhstan to win on Saturday, probably by stoppage, but nothing is guaranteed in boxing. Macklin has not only the ability to take GGG the distance, but to compete with the 160-pound badass.

I think we’re going to get a fight on Saturday, a good one. I like Golovkin by late-rounds TKO, maybe in the eighth or ninth round, but I think he’ll know that he’s been in a fight when it’s all said and done.

I agree that Broner’s performance against Malignaggi was underwhelming given the lopsided odds, fan/media predictions and the gross amount of hype that surrounds the Cincinnati native, but that doesn’t mean the young standout is a bust at 147 pounds.

It was his first bout at welterweight and if he continues to fight there, or drops down to 140 pounds, I think he’ll settle into the weight more and feel more comfortable letting his hands go the way he did at 130 and 135 pounds.

I would favor some of the guys that you mentioned would beat him (Matthysse, Garcia, Rios and Bradley) but I think he’s even-money with most of the veterans you listed (not Pacquiao – but come on, dude, that fight will never happen) and I’d pick him to beat Ortiz, Abregu, Alexander and – I hate writing this but it’s just a matter of styles – JMM; and that’s saying a lot.

Now, having said that, I think it’s important to state that these are merely my opinions. I could be right about some of those matchups or I could be completely wrong. We won’t know how good Broner really is until he fights some of these veterans and fellow young guns. And I refuse to give him credit for anything he has yet to actually achieve. That means I will never say or write that he moved up to welterweight because he “conquered” or “dominated” the lightweight division because he didn’t fight his fellow beltholders and top 135 pounders (Ricky Burns, Miguel Vazquez and Richar Abril). I don’t care if most fans think he would beat those guys. Most fans thought he’d knockout Malignaggi.

Time will tell if Broner is the truth and a future star. For now he’s a talented boxer-puncher who has got the job done against fighters he was supposed to beat. So far, he’s looked great (Antonio DeMarco), he’s looked ordinary (Daniel Ponce de Leon) and he’s looked pretty good (Malignaggi).

HOW DID YOU SEE IT?

Hi Doug,

My thought on the fight this weekend: Broner did not do enough to win Malignaggi’s title. I dislike both guys, so there is no bias here. What is interesting to me is that the “experts,” press, and ringside judges mostly had it clearly for Broner. At the end of the fight, my scorecard was a draw.

What I saw play out was Malignaggi controlling the pace of the fight for the first six rounds. Broner did very little. He was effective after round 4, but inconsistent and inactive for a fighter trying to win a world title. Paulie made him miss a lot, and generally looked like the guy who really wanted to win and the guy putting in the effort to win. Now like I said, I had it a draw. If it was going to go one way or another I’d give it to Malignaggi as the champion doing what he had to do.

My question to you is, how did you see the fight and did it not seem like everyone was waiting for Broner to start throwing so they could give him rounds? If these were two unknown fighters would everyone have scored it for Broner? It seems to me that the subjective bias of knowing that Broner is the more physically gifted of the two, skewed people to overweight his performance.

Thoughts? – Vincent, New York, NY

I agree with you, and I fell into this to an extent while I watched the fight live. Not in the way I scored the bout so much but in the way I interpreted the action. I expected Broner’s punches to do more damage and I thought Malignaggi was working too hard in the early rounds and expending too much energy, which I thought he would need to hold off Broner in the late rounds. I thought he was going to get gassed out and then punched out and that colored the way I viewed the late rounds. In short, I thought he was taking more of a beating late in the fight than he actually was.

Malignaggi was arm weary over the second half, but he wasn’t so fatigued that he couldn’t make Broner miss with some of those big shots and come back with clean single jabs, counter hooks and one-twos to the body (even while backing up).  

Watching it live (in a room full of people, eating, drinking and Tweeting my thoughts while answering some Tweets from others), I scored it 116-112 or eight rounds-to-four for Broner and I thought the 11-1 favorite dominated the second half of the fight.

However, watching a replay at home by myself with no distractions I scored it 115-113 for Broner. The only round I scored differently was the third. Watching live, I scored it for Broner, who landed some big shots at the start and end of the round. But watching it again, I noticed that Malignaggi landed many clean shots and generally outworked the challenger. It was close, but I thought Paulie edged it on second viewing. So I had Malignaggi winning the first five rounds and Broner winning the next seven.

The main difference between the two viewings was how I perceived the second half of the fight. I thought Malignaggi was competitive in the late rounds during my second viewing.

As for the “the experts, press, and ringside judges” who had it clearly for Broner – especially those who scored it 117-111 for The Problem – well, I guess they saw a different fight. It happens. Many of the same members of the media scored Donaire-Rigondeaux a very close fight. Watching from TV, I thought the only clear round Nonito won was the 10th (the knockdown round).

Sometimes you see a different fight when you’re there live. I thought Saul Alvarez clearly beat Austin Trout scoring from ringside in San Antonio. But many fans and members of the media thought Trout won six rounds (thus having Canelo edge it by one point thanks to the knockdown he scored). Guys that I respect (such as Cliff Rold) had Trout winning.

A possible reason for the disparity in scoring (which has been brought up many times before) is that those who are ringside notice the impact of the harder punches landed (which favors the boxers with better power) more than those watching on TV.

WHERE BRONER STANDS

What’s fresh Dougie,

I’m sure you’re going to get a lot of passionate response about AB this week. Some in love, some hating, none rational. I propose we hit the mute button on his act for a minute and look at the boxing. I get what he’s doing outside the ring. It brings in money and that’s great. But to guys like me, who’ve laced em up and love the actual sport, that’s all just noise and irrelevant.

Broner is a good fighter. I’m curious and will pay attention, though not big money. The hyperbole on him seems a bit heavy. He went life and death with Ponce DeLeon (I thought AB won), he beat a good fighter soundly in DeMarco, though he seemed to outweigh him by ten pounds, which is quite a bit at lightweight and something he can’t keep up, he beat up a shot Escobedo after missing weight, and he won a decision with Paulie at welter (Paulie is not a natural welter).

Given that…we can say he’s good. We can’t say great nor a headliner based on his resume. Not yet anyways. And he doesn’t deserve Matty Ice yet even though all will call for it. A much fresher Paulie was beaten much more convincingly by Khan, Hatton, Cotto, etc. He passed a test.

I know everyone is passionately demanding Matthyse here and now….and I don’t blame them. Broner is unlikeable and Matty is a beast. There are a lot of fighters at 140-147 he should go through first. Matty earned his shot at Garcia. Let’s let that happen. I wouldn’t be confident right now in Broner beating any of: Khan, JMM, Danny G, Bradley, Ortiz, Devon, Marcos or Lamont. He has a ways to go, in my mind, before he’s earned a spot on that list.

So, with the mute on, that is where Broner fits. He’s not pound for pound anything….yet. And the fact he merits so much coverage sucks when guys like Lucas are ignored and have to travel to get jobbed in St. Louis or Tim Bradley wastes away in Palm Springs for years without getting a shot before Pacman. 

I’m curious, but I’ll keep the mute button pushed for a little while longer here. – Tony, Calabasas, CA

I agree with you, Tony. Broner is good. Had he blown out Malignaggi like everyone was expecting him to I’d say he’s very good. But he didn’t. He’s good. Let’s just leave it at that. There’s nothing wrong with him being good for now.

We don’t need to make him a pound-for-pound player (as this fine publication has done). We don’t need to proclaim that he’s the best at whatever weight class he occupies (as HBO did, and is doing with Terence Crawford now that Broner has left the 135-pound division – and the network).

All fans and media have to do is sit back and see how things pan out for the soon-to-be 24 year old.

I agree that we don’t need to rush a showdown with Matthysse. I’d love to see him take on Maidana or the Keith Thurman-Diego Chavez winner later this year. If he passes that test then I’d love to see him drop down to 140 to challenge the winner of Matthysse-Danny Garcia (which I’m still hopeful will happen this year) sometime in 2014. The winner of Devon Alexander-Amir Khan (should that fight take place in December) is also a fight I wouldn’t mind seeing Broner take next year (especially if Khan wins).

I’m not really interested in watching Broner fight Malignaggi again, or Shane Mosley or the Andre Berto-Jesus Soto Karass winner.

9 ROUNDS-TO-3 FOR MALIGNAGGI

Dougie,
The nicest card I can come up with for Broner is 8-rounds-to-4 for Paulie. As I mentioned last week, Broner has no defense. It’s a shame that Paulie fought the fight of his life and it got stolen from him. Broner got his ass plowed between 8 and 11 rounds tonight. I can’t be too mad, because Broner’s proven in about four fights now that he can’t defend himself. I dislike Danny Garcia, and I’d pick Garcia to stop him inside of six. It was classless for Showtime to take the mic from Paulie when he said Tom Schrek’s card was indefensible.  – Todd

I feel for Malignaggi and you know I have a lot of respect for him (as a fighter and a broadcaster), but I think the right guy won on Saturday. I don’t think Broner “dominated” Malignaggi but I thought he deserved to win a competitive fight.

I also think Broner has a more-than-decent defense. He’s not easy to hit in the face with more than one punch at a time – even when a fast boxer like Malignaggi is working extra hard. If he was easy to hit, his face would have been lumped up with the high volume that Malignaggi was putting up.

However, I think Malignaggi proved that Broner is not untouchable or unbeatable (as way too many Twitter Nation nitwits proclaimed after The Problem decimated DeMarco last year). Paulie teed off on his body and landed clean single jabs and left hooks. Other flaws in Broner’s game that were evident during Saturday’s fight include: a lack of a consistent jab, difficulty letting his hands go against a moving opponent and the tendency to follow “a mover” around instead of cutting the ring off.

BRONER’S LACK OF A SILENT CONTRACT

Sup Dougie,

A lot has been said about this weekend’s action already. Hell, tiny Tim got FRIED for that article, didn’t he?  I had a chance to watch the fight again and had these thoughts:

-AB is not class personified, but I’ve always respected his insistence NOT to clinch or want to stay stagnate. Everyone is balking about “the knee”, but I saw Paulie trying to wrap both of ABs legs up before Broner was able to retaliate by doing that stuff. Same for his 360 behind-the-back punch uppercut combo that is somewhere straight out of some boxing comic book somewhere for sure.

-AB won that fight 116-114. I give PM “busy credit” for working when AB chose to stalk behind his force field and pick off shots. PM has no power, we all know that… but I just got the feeling that PM was doing all he could do, and AB was doing whatever he WANTED to do in there. 

-Speaking of contracts, Paulie has an announcing gig to look forward to, and I think he’s the actual winner here as AB will continue to be a problem for himself after this fight.

-Y’know Doug… when I moved near South Beach I thought I was ballin’. I paid too much for well-known clothes I’d never heard of and hit the strip. Well… after the tab came in from a few shots, I realized how costly “ballin” was going to be.  Adrien Broner is now going to realize how costly the shots are in the room of talent he’s chosen to enter. Here’s a list of fighters I feel will be a problem for “the Problem”:

-Lucas Matthysse (KO similar to Tarver’s number on RJJ)
-Lamont Peterson (UD or KO)
-Devon Alexander (see Lamont Peterson)
-Amir Khan (starches Broner inside of 5 ala Hearns and Duran)
 
Less of a problem, but more than a puncher’s chance.

-Brandon Rios (either win by KO or loses a UD to AB)
-Marcos Maidana (see above)
-Ruslan Provodnikov (see above)

So what does that all mean for Al Haymon?  Simple, take on the winner of Timmy Bradley and Juan Manual Marquez. Most $$ for the definite risk Adrien Broner will face from here on out.

Parting career shots go to the well-respected Jonathon Banks. Seth Mitchell fought inside of a shell so as not to get caught again and Banks did nothing to take advantage of that. He should now invest his efforts into being one of the world’s best up and coming trainers.

As for Mitchell, I say pit him in against Bryant Jennings and see if he can get to the next level or not. Duces. – JB

Mitchell-Jennings seems like a good fight on paper. I would consider the winner to be lower top-10 contender.

The Bradley-Marquez winner would be a dream come true for Broner (the biggest possible fight that could be made without his “big brother” Mayweather and the Filipino Icon). Unfortunately, they’re in separate boxing leagues (Broner with GBP/SHO and Timmy & JMM with TR/HBO) for the time being.

I think Maidana is going to be Broner’s next opponent and that’s OK with me. I agree that “Chino” has more than a puncher’s chance in that one (though I favor Broner). I think Rios at his best might break Broner down to a late TKO; Provo would give him a hell of a fight. Too bad we’ll probably never see those bouts. The Broner-Rios press conference would be the most heated since Fernando Vargas shoved Oscar De La Hoya at the kick off media event for their “Bad Blood” promotion.

I would also favor Matty to beat Broner, but I can see The Problem prevailing against Peterson, Alexander and Khan. I think Peterson’s guts and workrate would make for a terrific fight with Broner, but his lack of one-shot KO power and tendency to get hit would give the Cincinnati Kid the opportunity to win on points. Alexander would be a stylistic nightmare for Broner (and the fans) but I see a Jermain Taylor-Cory Spinks scoring scenario in that matchup. Khan’s speed, lateral movement and combination punching would give Broner hell but the first clean shot the American landed to the Brit’s jaw would turn the fight. I’m sorry but guys who get dropped and struggle to beat Julio Diaz won’t kick Broner’s ass.

Regardless of who would win, I think it’s important to point out that aside from the Alexander matchup, Broner would make for a hell of a scrap with everyone you mentioned. Part of that reason is the fact that Broner doesn’t like to hold or clinch, as you noted.

LONG TIME, NO WRITE

I think it’s been a matter of years since I’ve last written to a mailbag of your hosting. Hope you and your family well – I’m learning to hack a divorce (late 2012) and this crazy economy.

With regard to Malignaggi-Broner some thoughts:

Virtually all agree speed is the ‘X’ factor in most sports. Broner’s speed is hugely overrated. Not only was Malignaggi quicker, but by a considerable margin.

Isn’t Broner who at 23 is in his athletic prime (and in boxing he may not be at say, 26) a sad example of today’s “do-less warrior?” Sure he eked out a decision but he took entire rounds off and fought in very limited spurts. He’s a sharp puncher, let’s give him that.

Broner shows every indication of wanting to cherry-pick whole divisions, while making the bulk of his money through his personae – rather than outright boxing skills or ability: Oops! That’s the same recipe as every hyped fighter coming up! (Alvarez and his ilk, the exception.)

Finally, I don’t like Money, but the comparisons are not valid.  MM knows defensive boxing inside out, is blazing fast and is a compulsive student of the game. He’s got a big mouth to boot – and in that regard only are he and Broner similar. Many thanks. – Allan L. Cerf

Mayweather’s toned down the mouthing off a bit, thank goodness. Regardless, it’s silly to compare Broner with him. Broner is a boxing prodigy who had a lot of amateur bouts and is blessed to have a very good trainer, but Mayweather was a boxing prodigy born into a world-class professional boxing family. Floyd didn’t just start boxing early, he was immersed in the sport and he was a top amateur boxer on the national and international scenes. He won national titles and earned a bronze medal at the ’96 Olympics (and probably deserved to make it to the finals of the Atlanta Games). I don’t think Broner ever won an open-class national amateur title (part of that is due to how young he was when he turned pro).

Both guys have high boxing IQs but Mayweather is the more slippery boxer, is more versatile and is the far more complete boxer – he’s got the educated jab to help tie his defense and offense together.

I really hope Broner doesn’t try to cherry pick his way to the top (and I really, really hope that fans and media don’t give him a free pass to do so as too many did with Roy Jones Jr. and Mayweather years ago). If he’s as talented and special as he’s hyped up to be it would be damn shame to waste his vast potential fighting 10-1 underdogs during his prime.

I don’t know if I’m ready to label Broner a “do-less warrior.” I thought he was very economical against Malignaggi, definitely not as busy as I wanted him to be, but I think he’s used to badly hurting his opponents with one shot and then knocking them out with two- and three-punch combos. He may have learned during his fight with Paulie that he’s going to have to let his hands go a little more to score knockouts or win a clear-cut decision against world-class welterweights.    

I don’t think Broner’s speed his overrated. He didn’t look like a speed demon vs. Malignaggi, who also has fast hands, but I think Broner’s quick hands and reflexes were evident (even though Paulie made him miss more than he usually does).

Good to hear from you, Allan, and here’s hoping that late 2013 is a hell of a lot better for you than late 2012. 

Around the web