Robert Delgado – Los Angeles
Not included on any pound-for-pound top ten lists, two-time welterweight world champion Andre Berto and former WBC titlist at 147lbs Victor Ortiz remain two of the P4P most exciting prizefighters on the planet and both trade leather on Saturday, February 11 at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas in a highly-anticipated rematch of their 2011 classic. Fanning the flames ahead of the do-over duel, Ortiz has claimed he does not even respect his opponent…
“I know I have to be tremendously tough for this guy, both in and out of the ring,” said Ortiz, a 24-year-old product of the conveyor belt of boxing talent that is Oxnard. Born in Kansas City and, in a highly-publicised life-story, abandoned by his mother, Ortiz was left to take care of his younger brother Temo before being discovered by Robert Garcia and brought to California, where his career is now overseen by Robert’s brother Danny.
Often the underdog, Ortiz (29-3-2, 22ko) was written off by fight scribes for his capitulation against Marcos Maidana in 2009, produced a career-best performance to beat Berto down last year earning him a shot at Floyd Mayweather Jr, an experienced athlete who knocked Victor out in the fourth round leaving Ortiz, once again, as the unfancied fighter heading into the February bout in Vegas.
Ortiz is – unlike his Vicious moniker – well-spoken and articulate outside of the ring. Even after losing in such swift and unsatisfactory a manner to Mayweather, Victor was all-smiles post-fight and had the appearance of a man just happy to be there considering the road he had trodden, however, inside the squared circle he wants to reassert himself and live up to his nickname.
In his own words he is “not a guy who has to run [my] mouth” as he “lets the boxing gloves do the talking.” He continued: “It’s going to be a great fight, I will be victorious once again and I will not take no for an answer. [In the last fight] it was the same Berto I trained for, actually better. The only difference – there was a beast in there with him. Again, I’m the underdog. That’s the story of my life,” said Ortiz.
“I don’t really mind it one bit. It’s the game. I’m just here. At the end of the day I’m just trying to be one of the greats.”
With strong victories over Jan Zaveck, Carlos Quintana, Juan Urango, Luis Collazo and Steve Forbes, combined with his aesthetically-pleasing fighting style, it is impossible to dismiss Berto’s credentials and skillset, something Ortiz acknowledges when he labels Berto (28-1-0, 22ko) a “good fighter”, however, having already shared the ring once with him where he twice dropped the Floridian, he added: “I never saw him as great.
“Not even when I was at 140 and I was coming up to challenge him — which is why I challenged him,” Ortiz added. “Don’t get me wrong, he’s a dangerous fighter but I don’t fear him. I have no respect for him, I’m not scared of him, nothing like that.
“At the end of the day I will win this once again.”
Related article: New IBF champ Berto sends Zaveck back to Slovenia a bloody mess
All Pictures: Stacey Verbeek – Maple Avenue Boxing Gym
Tributes poured in from around the world as The Greatest, Muhammad Ali, a three-time heavyweight champion of the world, turned 70 this week. Present at the weekend shindig in Louisville, KY was On The Beak‘s fight photographer Stacey Verbeek, who recommended The Muhammad Ali Center to be one of the places boxing fans make a pilgrimage to…
Robert Delgado – Los Angeles
In light of Floyd Mayweather Jr‘s headline-grabbing call-out of Manny Pacquiao yesterday, the Filipino boxing sensation has issued an official response… he wants the fight, he’ll even begin negotiations for a date that precedes the talented American’s looming 87-day imprisonment, but he cannot accommodate a Cinco de Mayo outing: “The fight can happen at the end of May,” stated Pacquiao, a champion of eight weight classes.
Floyd made his statements on his official Twitter account, as reported by On The Beak yesterday and it has not taken long for Pacquiao (54-3-2, 38ko) to react: “Manny Pacquiao wants to make it clear the fight can happen at the end of May,” said a statement on Mp8.ph.
“Manny wants Floyd to release his grip on May 5 so the fight can happen for the fans.”
The reasons for Pacquiao’s desire to postpone the prospective fight date by a matter of weeks are presumably two fold.
One: It provides Pacquiao with additional time to recover from his November fight with Juan Manuel Marquez, a 12 round fisticuffs that saw Manny suffer a cut so deep it required 28 stitches. According to a plastic surgeon close to the fighter’s camp, the severity of the cut will inhibit Pacquiao’s training as he will not be able to spar until April at the earliest.
Two: It also ensures there is enough time to construct the makeshift 40,000 + seater stadium that Top Rank Boxing promoter Bob Arum wants to deploy on the Las Vegas strip that would ensure the MGM Grand Garden Arena is dwarfed in terms of capacity and therefore gate receipts.
Pacquiao’s response can be deemed a positive one due to the fact he still wants to box in May. Arum recently journeyed to Pacquiao’s native Philippines in order to discuss a quartet of viable opponents, none of whom were Mayweather (42-0-0, 26ko). It has been speculated that, because of Manny’s desire to box Mayweather, he was to reject all the options and push for a fight with Floyd.
If Pacquiao had reiterated Arum’s statements about a June fight, the match-up may well have have taken two steps back as Mayweather is required to turn himself in to a Las Vegas jail by June 1 on domestic violence charges relating to a September, 2010 incident involving his ex girlfriend Josie Harris. A date that had, itself, been pushed back from earlier this month so that Mayweather could oblige his commitment to box in May.
Related article: Floyd Mayweather officially calls out Manny Pacquiao: Step up punk
Related article: Manny Pacquiao to try to force Mayweather fight: I want Floyd next
Denzil Stone – Atlantic City
Top Rank Boxing promoter Bob Arum’s alleged unwillingness to pit his welterweight attraction Manny Pacquiao, against undefeated pay-per-view sensation Floyd Mayweather, may be negated by the Filipino fighter himself, as Pacquiao has told the press that his American rival is his most desired opponent for his next pugilistic outing. Manny added that he and Arum are due to meet as early as tomorrow, Tuesday, to discuss his summer fight.
“I’ve said this over and over before and I’m saying this again,I want Floyd Mayweather Jr to be my next opponent and I haven’t changed my choice despite recent developments,” said Pacquiao, as quoted by Phil Boxing.
A showdown between Pacquiao (54-3-2, 38ko) and Mayweather (42-0-0, 26ko) would not only represent a welterweight unification contest for the WBO and WBC world titles, it would also decide whom the true pound-for-pound best prizefighter currently is.
The prospective bout is expected to far surpass the records for gate receipts and PPV purchases and, as such, Arum wants to maximise earnings for his fighter as much as possible.
So much so, that the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, which seats 18,000, is deemed to be too small a stage and the experienced promoter, instead, would favour the construction of a temporary stadium to be built on the city’s famous strip.
Mayweather had already reserved the date of May 5 to box at the MGM Grand, yet his own participation was jeopardised due to an imminent 87-day imprisonment for domestic violence charges, however, Mayweather’s lawyer was successful in having the sentence postponed due to the obligation to fight.
The May date was deemed too early by Arum, who – following consultation with a plastic surgeon – claimed Pacquiao would need further time to recover from a 28-stitch cut sustained during his most recent clash with proud Mexican warrior Juan Manuel Marquez.
Arum was believed to favour the four options of Top Rank super lightweight Timothy Bradley, three division world champion Miguel Cotto who is expected to continue being represented by Top Rank on a fight by fight basis, Marquez who has boxed Pacman three times and feels he deserved victory in each and every contest and, finally, Lamont Peterson – the unified champion of the WBA/IBF titles at 140lbs.
The Mayweather option has not been completely discarded by Arum, as he reportedly would consider aligning Pac with Floyd if the date was pushed to the end of May or even in June, however, Mayweather is expected to turn himself in to the prison authorities by June 1.
“I am meeting with my promoter, Bob Arum on Tuesday and I will insist that the fight with Mayweather be given the preference than the four others in the list I will fight next,” concluded Pacquiao.
Robert Delgado – Los Angeles
Five-time Futch-Condon award winner Freddie Roach has conceded that his star pupil Manny Pacquiao has a glaring flaw in his fighting style – his inability to cope sufficiently with counter-punchers – and that, consequently, a prospective punch-up with pound-for-pound pugilist and welterweight rival Floyd Mayweather would represent the toughest challenge to the Filipino’s winning streak, however, Roach also believes his ward’s work-rate would see him with his arm raised come the contest’s end.
According to the New York Times, Roach has been working on nullifying a counter-puncher’s success against Pacquiao (54-3-2, 38ko) during training – something that will have to be further combated if a super fight between the two top 147lbers materialises this year.
“Mayweather is very precise and very conservative with his punches but he’s very accurate and he lands good shots,” said Roach.
Top Rank Boxing founder Bob Arum has jetted to the Philippines in order to discuss four possible opponents to his premier prizefighter: Juan Manuel Marquez, Miguel Cotto, Timothy Bradley and Miguel Cotto are all expected to be presented to Pacquiao as viable candidates to fight come June, however, Arum has also indicated that he would be willing to add Mayweather (42-0-0, 26ko) to the fold under the proviso that the May 5 date reserved by Floyd be postponed until June… or at least the end of May.
Arum has claimed that a 28-stitch cut sustained by Pacquiao during his latest outing – a slim points win over long-time rival Marquez in November – will need a lengthy period to sufficiently heal which thus discounts May 5. Arum also had issue with the mooted venue, the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, citing it’s 18,000 capacity as too small for such a historic event and instead advocated the construction of a temporary 40,000 seater arena on the city’s strip.
“There’s no doubt it’s a tough fight,” Roach continued, before implying that if he were to pick Pacman’s next opponent then he would – like the entire boxing kingdom – would elect Money May. “It’s a challenge and that’s why I like it. I like getting ready for challenges, and Mayweather is the biggest challenge for me and Manny.”
Pacquiao suffered more physical abuse than was expected when he was aligned with Marquez for the third time. Since their second fight, much had been made about the apparent improvement of Manny, most notably his dexterity, yet three years later he was still frustrated by Juan Manuel’s timing and countering.
“We do have trouble with the counterpunching style and Floyd is a great counterpuncher,” Roach said. “We have to go in with a good game plan. If one guy averages 85 punches a round, and one guy averages 15 punches a round, I think the 85 will beat the 15,” he said, an emphatic conclusion that he believes the blueprint to beat Mayweather is by out-throwing the undefeated boxer.
Denzil Stone – Atlantic City
Floyd Mayweather Jr, 34, was ready to begin a 90-day prison sentence in Las Vegas on charges relating to domestic violence instigated in September, 2010 but, following a late plea from the welterweight boxer’s lawyer – Richard Wright – the Justice of the Peace Melissa Saragosa allowed a postponement until June 1 in order to accommodate previously existing sporting obligations. Namely: Mayweather’s Cinco de Mayo date.
According to an Associated Press report, Mayweather has been allowed to continue training in order to ready himself for what could potentially be a super fight on May 5 at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas. The date and arena had been reserved by Floyd and his camp late last year in the hope that it could entice Filipino prizefighter Manny Pacquiao and Top Rank promoter Bob Arum into booking what is estimated to be the most lucrative match-up in the sport’s history.
Indeed, money appears to be one of the key factors. AP state that, whilst stressing that Mayweather – himself dubbed ‘Money’ – was not attempting to shirk away from the sentence, but informed Saragosa of the financial benefits that Las Vegas enjoys when Floyd fights in town. His last seven fights were cited to have raised over $1 billion to the city’s economy and the May 5 date would likely generate a further $100 million irrespective of opponent.
“This is simply a delay because of prior commitments and contracts,” said Wright as quoted by Associated Press.
The judge replied: “Mr. Mayweather has an obligation to this court [but] given the fact that Mr. Mayweather has these obligations, I am going to grant your request.”
Leonard Ellerbe, who acts as confidant to Mayweather, said fans can expect Floyd to engage in a “mega fight” in May, however, when pressed as to whom the opponent he faces will be, Ellerbe requested time be given for himself and his fighter to process the day’s events.
“We’ll make an announcement about who we’re going to fight next week. We just came out of the court hearing. Give us a chance to catch our breath,” the Los Angeles Times quote him to have said.
The super fight between Mayweather and Pacquiao, though, is unlikely to go ahead unless the date is pushed toward the end of the month. Arum said: “May 5 is out for us, it can’t happen because we want to explore the idea of getting a [temporary] 40,000 seater stadium up on the streets of Las Vegas.
“The end of May is a possibility.”
Petra Kirsch – Gelsenkirchen
It is the apparent ease in which Floyd Mayweather Jr can get himself into and – crucially – out of trouble that has acted as the catalyst for his 90 day gaol sentence, $2,500 fine and 100 hour community service charge for a reduced battery/domestic violence and harassment relating to a 2010 incident involving his then-girlfriend, according to Lisa Luzaich, who was the prosecutor in a Las Vegas court-room today; Wednesday, December 21.
“He just continually gets himself into trouble and he is able to get himself out of it as well. Essentially it is because he is who he is and is able to get away with everything,” said Luzaich, according to the Las Vegas Sun. “The only thing that’s going to get this man’s attention is incarceration.”
Judge Melissa Saragosa indicated that it could be inferred that Mayweather threatened to kill his then girlfriend Josie Harris by stating he could make her “disappear”. Floyd also took mobile telephones belonging to Harris and two of their children. It was also reported that their ten-year-old son fled the scene in order to seek help from security.
Judge Saragosa added: “Punishment is appropriate. No matter who you are, you have consequences to your actions when they escalate to this level of violence.”
Mayweather’s adviser Leonard Ellerbe declined to comment after the official verdict.
The 90 day sentence will begin on January 6, 2012.
Petra Kirsch – Gelsenkirchen
Pound-for-pound king Floyd Mayweather Jr, the current incumbent of the WBC welterweight world championship, has pleaded guilty to reduced battery domestic violence and harassment charges before a Las Vegas judge today, Wednesday, December 21 and has consequently been sentenced to a 90 day imprisonment. The 34-year-old has also been ordered to complete 100 hours community service and pay a $2,500 fine, but how will this affect his prospective ring return?
Having been found guilty of the aforementioned misdemeanor charges, Mayweather Jr avoided sentencing for felony grand larceny in a September, 2010 incident when he was alleged to hit his then girlfriend and threatened two of their children.
If convicted of all charges, the boxer – an undefeated, defensively-sharp fighter who has championed five different weight divisions – could have been incarcerated for 34 years.
Mayweather attended court with his manager, long-time confidant, ally and CEO of Mayweather Promotions – Leonard Ellerbe. He will report for prison on Friday, January 6, 2012.
Should Mayweather (42-0-0, 26ko) complete the full sentence then he will not be released until Thursday, April 5. This puts his prospective ring return date of May 5 at the MGM Grand Garden Arena, Las Vegas, on hold.
It is a twist of fate that Mayweather’s personal life has taken such a plummet when his prizefighting reputation reached stratospheric heights with his fourth round knockout of Victor Ortiz, together with welterweight rival Manny Pacquiao’s unconvincing majority decisioning of Mexican nemesis Juan Manuel Marquez.
Mayweather’s victory over Ortiz gave Floyd a new lease of in-ring life… he spoke warmly about wanting to please his fans by fighting regularly and taking on the greatest of challenges. It was widely speculated that the man dubbed Money could end up boxing Pacquiao or lineal middleweight champion Sergio Martinez in 2012.
Ellerbe even confirmed that they had put the MGM Grand on hold for May 5; Cinco de Mayo, a lucrative date in boxing, particularly for Mexicans, and the fact that there was still eight, seven and now six months to any prospective super fight, it was deemed that there was still enough time to design and execute a fitting promotion for such an event.
A grand promotion and en eight-week training camp are mandatory requirements for big-time boxing and so Mayweather’s ring return will not likely occur until the final quarter of 2012. In such an event, he may even receive a second punishment as he could see himself getting stripped of his WBC title for a period of what would be perceived as inactivity.
Regarding his sentence, Mayweather is yet to comment…
Robert Delgado – Los Angeles
Bob Arum has indicated that the third installment of Manny Pacquiao and Juan Manuel Marquez‘s epic onslaught, a pay per view event staged in Las Vegas in November, is expected to have received 1.400,000 pay-per-view purchases, eclipsing the 1.250,000 buys that Floyd Mayweather Jr and Victor Ortiz attracted for their September tussle. If such figures are confirmed, then it will be the Filipino’s highest PPV headlining bout to date.
“They’re still computing but it’s going be about 1.4 million,” Arum explained to the Manila Bulletin recently.
Pacquiao, a 32-year-old from the Philippines who has traversed through the lighter weight-classes collecting belts in eight separate divisions, has only one contest currently in the top ten pay per view boxing events broadcast by American behemoth HBO.
The one name that dominates the table, is heavyweight badass Mike Tyson, who makes five appearances. Evander Holyfield features thrice, while Oscar de la Hoya and Floyd Mayweather Jr make two appearances as well as fighting each other to provide a number one that has never since come close to being surpassed.
If Arum’s estimates are realised, then Pacquiao will share sixth spot, along with Holyfield v Foreman in 1991, de la Hoya v Trinidad in 1999 and Mayweather v Mosley, last year.
|Official Top Ten Pay-Per-View Boxing Events
|1 – de la Hoya v Mayweather Jr (2007)
|2 – Tyson v Holyfield II (1997)
|3 – Lewis v Tyson (2002)
|4 – Tyson v Holyfield I (1996)
|5 – Tyson v McNeeley (1995)
|6 – Holyfield v Foreman (1991)
|6 – de la Hoya v Trinidad (1999)
|6 – Mayweather Jr v Mosley (2010)
|9 – Tyson v Bruno II (1996)
|10 – Pacquiao v Mosley (2011)
On The Beak – Admin
The boxing world is currently in recovery mode today, Sunday, as Brian Viloria bested erstwhile pound-for-pound climber Giovani Segura in a WBO flyweight world title clash at the Ynares Sports Center in Pasig City on December 10, in what is arguably a bigger upset than the one that occurred in Washington DC, between Lamont Peterson and Amir Khan. Viloria stopped Segura in just eight rounds, becoming the first fighter to knockout the Mexican in the process.