The Filipino Man and the Sea

*Disclaimer: I’m not a doctor and lack any degrees associated with the medical field. Which is a moot point in this case, because you don’t have to be an MD to know that this story is complete and utter bullshit.

For those of you who haven’t heard the latest and greatest in the saga of Manny and the torn rotator cuff, you’ll be happy to learn that he’s been fully healed. “But Jenna,” you might be saying “I heard/read/was told by my neighborhood Pactard that Manny was neglecting to go to rehab in LA. Did he go to rehab in the Phillippines instead?” And to you I say no, dear reader. To my knowledge, as of this day our favorite Filipino fighter remains with his feet steadfastly grounded on the subject of rehab. Because he’s got something better:

God and the ocean.

That’s right. Several boxing news sources revealed late last week that Pac-man himself reported his shoulder has been completely healed through prayer and swimming in the salty sea.  And the never ending supply of Yes Men in his camp have (of course) totally gone along with this nonsense, also attributing Pac’s miraculous turnaround to his faith and devotion to God and the healing properties of saltwater. I couldn’t make this up if I tried. 

Couple of problems with this, guys (and gals-no misogyny up in here): First of all (again, no medical background), wouldn’t it be extremely painful and difficult to breaststroke with a torn rotator cuff? And wouldn’t it be EVEN HARDER to swim with a newly repaired (formerly torn) rotator cuff that had required surgical intervention but had never been worked in rehab? 

Yes, people. Yes it would. (Not to mention the fact that were Manny actually swimming with a newly repaired non-rehabbed injury in the ocean he might,oh I don’t know, appear to be injured. This would leave him susceptible to shark attacks. IJS, I watch “Shark Week.” ūüėĀ) This feat was more irresponsible on the part of the Pac camp than that time when they encouraged his singing career. 

If one were a bit cynical (like me), one might attribute this sudden healing to another recent announcement made by none other than Bastard Bob Arum himself regarding a fight between Pacquaio and everyone’s favourite whiny Brit, Amir Khan. Per Arum, this fight would occur in 2016 in Dubai. Nice of them to throw a bone Khan’s way after Mayweather jerked him around so, but this should raise more than just a few eyebrows on the validity of Shouldergate as a whole.

Now, as a testament to my loyalty toward this blog (and because I got a really gross bruise from drunkenly walking into my bed frame about a week ago that I wanted to get rid of. It’s still shorts season.) I decided to conduct my own saltwater healing experiment.  I didn’t think to take a “Before” picture, so you’ll have to take my word for it when I say the bruise was, indeed, really gross. Picture it completely filled in, reddish/purplish/blackish and puffy. 

And here’s the “After,” four days of daily, half-hour long Epsom salt soaks later (Excuse my super white skin):

  
So as you can see, saltwater DOES have some healing powers. Had I added prayer, this might have cleared up completely before my beach trip. But you all know what they say about hindsight. (Shoutout to Walgreen’s Epsom Salt, BTW. Incidentally, the back of the bag also lauds its effectiveness as an enema treatment, but I’m not that committed to this cause. Perhaps Manny can try it out after his next ass reaming by Mayweather, should that day ever come.)

Pacquaio just needs to come clean, admit that he lost the fight fair and square without some excuse about a made up shoulder injury, and let us all forget that this idiocy ever happened.  The dude is a legend in the ring and this crap is beneath him. It would be truly sad for this to be one of the final things to tarnish the legacy of an otherwise brilliant boxer and seemingly good person.  Be better, Manny. 
Been a little quiet lately but I’m still on Twitter, y’all!  @junk_n_trunx 

One (more) Time?

First, any chance I have to quote Britney, I’ll take.

Secondly, (and keeping with the musical theme) supersition ain’t the way, y’all.

As most of my loyal readers (hi, family!) know, I’m a big Keith Thurman fan. He’s probably my favorite boxer, which says a lot as I don’t have one favorite anything. At least quarterly, Keith Thurman and superstition intersect in my life in this major way:

  
Ladies and gentleman of the blogosphere, I present to you my Facebook (and Twitter) picture. Now don’t get me wrong, this is my picture for about half the year anyway as it’s one of my favorites. But God forbid I have any other picture as my profile on social media about two weeks prior to a Thurman fight, be it a picture of family, the Pope (it never would be), or my dogs. Because somehow, some way, in this wonderfully intricate and beautiful universe of ours, this picture carries great weight in ensuring a Thurman win.

Or at least to me it does. 

So every few weeks before a Thurman fight without fail, this picture goes up. (This quirk has not gone unnoticed by the few friends I have who also hold an interest in the pugilistic arts, by the way.) And every time it does, like clockwork, a win. 

But this year, my superstitions got a little out of control. Not only did the requisite photo go up on social media just in time, I also talked myself into wearing a dress to the fight party I was hosting. Because after all, there was another time when I wore a dress on another night that Keith was fighting and he won then, too.  And then there were my bangs. To straighten or not to straighten? As I was putting the flat iron back into the bathroom cabinet because I deemed it would take too much time to straighten my hair, my hand stopped cold as I withdrew it. 

I had to straighten my damned bangs.

 Because EVERY OTHER TIME I’ve watched Keith fight, I wore my bangs straight. (Seriously, in retrospect I’m not even entirely sure this last part is true.) So out came the flat iron, and amid the straightening serum and my new split ends, I realized that I had gone overboard. Just a bit. If (when) Keith won that night, it would be entirely the consequence of his hard work and dedication to a sport that had been the root of his existence since childhood, and would have very little (if nothing) to do with my attire or choice of hairstyle.

And then the fight came, and we saw a version of Thurman that’s been creeping it’s way in since his fight with Bundu in December. Thurman the boxer, Thurman the “runner” (At least for a split second. I suppose it could also be regarded as “showing ring generalship,” since it did require Collazo to follow him, but it’s something I don’t like seeing from Keith),  and, (as much as I hate to admit it) Thurman the vulnerable.  That body shot was intense, y’all. I’ve never seen Thurman in pain like that, and it was a bit scary. 

Thankfully, the accidental headbutt serving as Collazo’s excuse to be a quitter came just in time, and Thurman collected another W. But I doubt I’m alone in speculating that this fight was not the exhibition that it should have been for Thurman, and it in no way appeared to be as easy as was expected.

There’s been much speculation over Thurman lately;  his power, the effect of his relationship with Al Haymon, and his worth in the boxing world. He’s definitely not the same fighter that he was even a year and a half ago-the guy who could take you out with a solitary punch in a late round-and as a result, he’s lost some of his excitement factor.  Oh, there’s always the chance that it could happen, and it probably will again soon. But it hasn’t happened since April of last year, when Julio Diaz took a knee and ended their fight in the third round after a tough body shot. 

Don’t get me wrong-as a true fan of Thurman I thoroughly enjoyed the discovery of Keith as more than a one-dimensional power puncher against Bundu, it was just a shock to the system and not at all what I was accustomed to. But after another decision win against Guerrero and now this, I’m ready for the power puncher to come back.  

Or is it just that opponents know what to expect from him now, and train in such a manner as to avoid his one shot KO strategy and force him to box? That’s definitely the safer strategy in a fight against Thurman. And how much blame can be placed on Uncle Al for potentially shielding Keith from tougher opponents, those who could truly force him to push himself to an even higher level? Does Thurman deserve a shot at Mayweather? (For the record: I don’t believe that he does, but I’ve been saying that for quite some time now. I just don’t want him to peak too soon). 

But for now-a win is a win, and I remain as big a Thurman fan as before. I’m excited to see the direction his career will be taking from here, and can be counted on to watch his next fight. 

 Only this time, I’ll have curly hair and will be wearing pants.
Follow me on Twitter! I’m @junk_n_trunx 

Coooooooooooottoooooooooo!

First off- no, I don’t mean MMA (or UFC).

Secondly-My favorite boxer isn’t Manny Pacquaio. 

This, my friends, is just a short glimpse into the life of a female boxing fan. When attempting to engage a new person in a conversation about the sport, I’m typically met with a sneer of some sort when the d-bag I’m talking to dismisses me as being just some cute lil thing trying to impress the big boys. Then comes the inevitable. The response I loathe. “Who is your favorite boxer, anyway? Mannnnyyy?” (It’s said just like that, too. If you really want the full effect, read it out loud, and if you don’t sound like a complete dickhead at first, re-read it until you do.) I tend to enjoy responding to this, especially in front of a larger group of people, because nine times out of ten the person has no idea who my favorite boxer is after I say their name. (Or in the case of a Facebook convo, who the dude in the picture with me is.)

Duh. Keith “One Time” Thurman.

The point can also be driven home by dropping a few other names obscure to your typical random asshat casual boxing fan, like so:

Amir Khan (stop laughing)

Brandon Rios

Kell Brook

Adrien Broner

Shawn Porter

Ruslan Provodnikov

And if you really want to sound like a boxing hipster, bring Cuba into the conversation. I guarantee that after throwing around an Erislandy Lara or (even better) a Guillermo Rigondeaux, you’ve pretty much won this fight. A couple of years ago, the same effect could have been achieved by dropping a Gennady Golovkin or (even) a Canelo Alvarez (shocking, especially in Texas, but it used to be so).

Or even this guy: Miguel Cotto. Not so much so in the past couple of years, but I can remember a time when he wasn’t as well known as he is now, at least not to your typical random asshat casual boxing fan (this needs to go on a t-shirt, by the way.)  It can be stated without argument that boxing fans have definitely seen a change for the better in Cotto’s style since he started training with Freddie Roach in 2012.  No longer a boxer (although he is more than capable of being one) but moreso a brawler, bringing action and, well, fun to his fights. (Unless you’re Geale. Pretty sure that wasn’t fun for him.) Roach has succeeded in bringing out the “raging bull” in Cotto, a goal he publicly set for himself when the pair announced that they would be joinng forces.

The same held true in Cotto’s bout against Australian Daniel Geale last night, when Geale went down in the fourth round after being hit with Cotto’s devastating left hook. After being stopped again in the same round, Geale shook his head “no” when asked by the ref if he was okay, and the fight was ended. I feel it’s safe to say that no one was truly suprised that the fight ended this way, with the real fun happening after the decision was announced.

Who does Cotto plan to fight next? Canelo. Not really a shocker to those who follow boxing, as the possibility of this fight had been announced weeks ago. The real surprise (to me, anyway) was when Cotto said that it would be “just another fight,” as Canelo is “just another fighter.”

Que?

Did Cotto miss that fight on 5/9? You know, that uneventful one (sarcasm, by the way) with the beautiful KO of Kirkland? I’m all about boxers down playing another fighter in order to psych themselves up, but if Cotto truly believes this I think we’ll all be in for a one-sided battle. If the fight even happens, that is.  Because Cotto has to take time off to spend with his family before committing to a date. Now, I’m all for taking time off to spend with one’s family (if you like them, otherwise I say screw it and go to Disneyland or something instead.) But dude is averaging one fight PER YEAR. That’s a lot of family time. Moreso even than the likes of other fighters such as Mayweather and Pac, who fight twice a year (as any typical random asshat casual boxing fan would know).

And even with Cotto’s new found offensive-strategy raging bull realness, a fight with Canelo will not be as easy as he may think. Granted, they’re both strong guys and both great fighters in their own likes. But Canelo has the combination of strength and youth behind him. And I know, I know, age isn’t everything, and B-Hop and all, but this combo in a fighter like Canelo could mean bad things for Cotto. Which is why I’m wondering if it happens in the first place. (And really, does Chris Algieri have plans next June? Because if Cotto’s trend of yearly first week in June only fights continues, he might). 

A potential fight with Gennady? I wouldn’t hold my breath on that one, folks. Not only did Cotto stammer out a bs response, it took him about 30 seconds to do so. Bottom line? He’s running scared of GGG, and with good reason, as he plans to retire soon and going out on a fight with GGG probably isn’t the best ending to an otherwise great (for the most part) boxing legacy. 

Finally, I can’t be the only one who caught the major shade Cotto was throwing at Max Kellerman after being asked if he was a middle weight fighter now.  That deserves a “Face Off” special of it’s own. (Does HBO even still do those??)

And for those of you who think I’m being too hard on Cotto, I’m actually a fan.  Had it been up to me, this guy would have been named Cotto. Instead, I let my husband name him. Taco Kawhi. (Texans.)

        Look! He’s being shy and moody, just like his would-be namesake!
Also-I’m on Twitter! You can find me at @junk_n_trunx 

Chocola-who?!

Nights like last Saturday prove to be the BEST fodder for fans who need a response to the ever-growing (ever-ridiculous) “boxing is dead” mantra that just won’t quit. We all knew that GGG was going to bring it (because really, has there ever been a time when he hasn’t), but I’m not sure that anyone was prepared for the show that was put on by Roman “Chocolatito” Gonzalez. In his debut on American television, the Nicaraguan heavy hitter stopped Edgar Sosa (and I use the term “stopped,” VERY loosely, y’all. More like damn near ended) in the second round of the bout using a relentless flurry of punches. 

Almost as interesting as the KO itself was the manner in which Chocolatito conducted himself afterward. Much like Canelo the week before, Chocolatito displayed great concern and care for his opponent; he stood near him after the KO, had his arm around him, and even rubbed his head in a gesture of friendship (huh huh). It appears as though the up and comers are cut from a different cloth from their predecessors, and we could be moving away from the days of the victor walking away from the, um, not victor, arms stretched toward the sky in jubilation all the while ignoring the grim scene behind him. (But isn’t that one of the things that is so loved about boxing? The great juxtaposition of the victor shamelessly celebrating a win, refusing to allow the grisly scene of defeat staring him in the face to mar the sweetness of the moment? While all the while knowing that the next time the roles could very well be reversed? But I digress.)

In his speech after the win, Chocolatito said that this was the reason he gets up at 4:00 in the morning to go to the gym, that this moment made it all worth it. I think that this kid is destined for greatness, folks. And I also think it’s going to be an amazing ride on the way there.  A fellow blogger (though I’m nowhere near the same league as him or his work, but if you haven’t yet checked out Saturday Night Boxing, you’re missing out) tweeted that he’d like to see Chocolatito on the same four times a year on HBO plan as GGG, and I couldn’t agree with him more. 

Gennady Golovkin vs Willie Monroe

I’d be extremely remiss in not mentioning the fact that we (or I at least) saw a different GGG than I’m used to last week. Yes, he was still a powerhouse. And a beast. And a badass. And every other adjective that could possibly be used in conjunction with his name. But he was also something else on Saturday, if even just for a millisecond-vulnerable. The fight started out the way that most expected it to-with Monroe on the canvas in the second round. (Not gonna lie, I had to work on Sunday and the thought of having two fights end in an explosive fashion in 30 minutes total was pretty appealing.)

But then Monroe got up. And went down again. And got up again (much to the surprise of the masses) and continued to fight. The guy showed a ton of heart, and even though it was clear that he was in over his head, gave it a really good go. He also nailed GGG a few times with some hard shots, and at one point it seemed as though GGG was standing in front of him and allowing himself to be hit as a strategy to wane Monroe’s confidence. True, GGG was pretty much walking through the punches, but it was apparent when he retreated to his corner that he was hurt. It was actually even evident during the ring, although scarce.

Despite his best attempts, GGG dominated Monroe in the 6th round, forcing him to the canvas. Monroe stayed down until the ref counted to 9, and after being chided for waiting too long to get up and asked if he could continue, Monroe uttered, “I’m done.”  

Now.

I’ve seen several people talk nonsense on social media about how Monroe “quit,” and while that’s all fine and good, I would challenge any of those people to continue going another six rounds with GGG after the beatdown that Monroe faced in the first half of that fight. Say what you will, but my ass would have been done halfway through the ring walk. It was an exceptional night for boxing, y’all. Whether you believe it was resurrected, zombified, or is as it’s always been, only this time with one new star shining much brighter. 

Review: Mayweather v Pacquiao

Seriously, you know you’ve been in Vegas for four days when you’re dying to eat a vegetable the second you get home.

The “Fight of the Century” has come and gone, and contrary to popular belief (or much to the dismay of some, depending on what side of the fence you’re on) boxing is, in fact, not dead. Rather, it’s been revitalized with new interest, even if that interest was purely in a superfight that failed to live up to it’s hype. ¬†And no matter your opinion on the actual fight itself (or the personal lives of the pugilists), you have to admit that it’s fun to get this wrapped up in something bigger than all of us; it makes the days exciting and (sometimes) the letdown afterward that much harder. But it¬†also reminds us how much fun it can be to live in a moment, if even only for a little while. Enough¬†with this sentimental stuff, though….

I WAS IN VEGAS, Y’ALL!!!

Not being a baller and all, I couldn’t afford tickets to the actual fight itself, but I was lucky enough to be able to attend the weigh in and an amazing closed circuit watch party (which turned out to be VIP for the price of a regular ticket, thanks to a mix up) and had the absolute time of my life.

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My wristband to get into the party. It was sparkly, and it guaranteed free drinks, so this     girl was happy. 

Surprisingly, I learned a lot while in Vegas. I learned that I’m terrible at Black Jack or Roulette, but awesome at War. I learned that when you’re in Vegas, Carl Froch can be innocently walking behind you for quite some time at the Grand and you won’t even realize it until someone yells his name. (I also learned that my fangirl tendencies aren’t limited to titles on this blog-sometimes I inadvertantly also yell “AAAAHHHH!!!!” after taking a picture with a famous boxer while running back to my husband. I like to play it cool.) And finally (possibly most important) I learned how crucial it is to carry a bag large enough to hold a pair of flip flops if you’re going all out on fight night. (You’re welcome, ladies. And men. I don’t judge.)

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These were the bane of my existence after about three hours

I could go on and on about how incredible Vegas is, but I know that ain’t what y’all came here for. On to the review!

Vasyl Lomachenko vs. Gamalier Rodriguez

This fight confirmed what most of us already thought would happen: simply put, that Rodriguez got his ass handed to him by Lomachenko in a bad, bad way. Although not unwilling to engage (mostly low blows, however), Rodriguez was just no match for the Olympian. After several calls for illegal hits (one of those being Lomachenko’s retaliation low blow), Rodriguez took two knees, with the final being in the ninth round where he stayed for the 10 count, ending in a KO for Lomachenko. ¬†At first glance, I thought that Rodriguez was just giving up, but after watching a couple of replays, it was easy to see that he was shaken and pretty hurt.

Despite this being a wholly one-sided fight, I was really impressed with Lomachenko’s performance (and his first name-if I ever have a kid {so, never} it’s name will be Vasyl. Boy or girl, I don’t care.) He’s still pretty early on in his career, and I’m really excited to see what the future will hold for him. I’m expecting greatness from this one, but I’m also horrible with my predictions so it can’t be held against me if I’m wrong.

Leo Santa Cruz vs. Jose Cayetano

Before I start in with this, I need y’all to know that I’m quite possibly (especially after this performance), the last remaining LSC fan in the greater United States. (Aside from any family or womens that LSC may have here, but that should go without saying.) And my well thought out, purely based on performance and style reasoning for liking LSC so much is this: he seems like a funny guy who enjoys his job and he wore a big cowboy hat after he fought here in San Antonio. Boom.

However; his performance on Saturday night was not his best, and I was actually very, very impressed with the heart and determination showcased by Cayetano in this fight. ¬†Cayetano was a late addition to the fight and wasn’t officially made an opponent until the end of April, giving him little time to prepare for a bout of this magnitude, especially since he still works two day jobs. (Again, LOTS of heart. I can’t even be bothered to go to the gym after working one job.) He was also coming off of a record of two previous losses in 10 round fights, so not the best setup, either. This had all the makings of a stepping stone fight that I daresay wasn’t as easy for LSC as we all thought it would have been. (In terms of going the distance, I mean.)

The fight went all 10 rounds and ended in a Unanimous Decision for LSC, but it was a fun 10 rounder to watch, IMO. ¬†As previously mentioned, Cayetano absolutely refused to quit, was moving around the ring well, and was a good little counterpuncher, too, at least for the first few rounds. LSC pretty much had him figured out by mid-fight. ¬†He also seemed to handle LSC’s blows (huh, huh) with relative ease.¬†¬†But in the end, LSC dominated the kid, although I’m not too sure what this says about him. It was an easy fight for LSC, as was the original intent (I’m sure), and I’d like to see better from him in the future.

But this is one of my favorite things about boxing. For all intents and purposes, they plucked a boxer out of nothingness, gave him a HUGE opportunity, and he made it worth his while. True, he didn’t show us absolute greatness or looming strength, but he went the distance and persisted during a fight billed to be the greatest of our time (well, my time anyway. Not sure how old the rest of y’all are ūüôā ), which had to have been an incredibly daunting task. Had this not happened, I’d know nothing of Cayetano, and now I’m looking forward to his next fight, whenever that may be. (Could be quite a while before he ends up on TV again, though, but still.)

Mayweather vs. Pacquiao

Seriously y’all, never in a million years did I think that I would be typing that (unless it ended with the phrase, “will never happen”), so just the fact that it occurred at all still has me amped, regardless of how one feels about the actual match. By this time, I’m relatively certain that most of the world knows how this fight ended, but if for some reason you haven’t yet heard (or you don’t want spoilers) stop reading now. (But come back later, I need¬†the “Views” on my stat count).

Also (disclaimer), I’m neither a Pactard nor a Flomo and thoroughly enjoy both fighters, so this will be an unbiased account of this fight (even though I’m sure that some of you will disagree. Kisses.)

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And for the Pac “Truthers,” here’s proof of the aforementioned statement. Yes, I bet with my heart and not my brain. My big baller $20 bet on Pac getting the KO over Mayweather.

Y’all, Floyd put on a boxing clinic on Saturday night, and it was both parts amazing and crushing¬†all at once. To see a boxer adapt to another fighter’s style so quickly and easily is truly the mark of greatness. This statement will not be backed by popular opinion (hell, this whole review probaby won’t), but Manny truly did give it his all, and he just couldn’t make it happen. It’s a tired cliche, but the greats make it look easy, and I think that Manny realized this after a few rounds with Floyd.

And as for the hotly contested “Floyd Ran, Floyd Hugged” debate, those of you who are saying that don’t know boxing. Period. Floyd threw and landed more punches than Manny, and more clinching went on during the Klitschko fight a couple of weeks ago (and really, every other recent Klitschko fight in recent years) than during this one. As for the running argument, Manny knew well in advance (assuming that he watched tape from Floyd’s last fights, which I would imagine that he did) that it would be VERY advantageous to him to cut off the ring in order to ensure that Floyd would have to go toe to toe with him (which was really the only way that he could win the fight in the first place) and he failed to do so.

This was Manny’s loss, fair and square. I hate to say it, because I truly do like the guy and enjoy his performances, but he simply was not the better boxer this time around. This had nothing to do with the ref or the judges, and everything to do with Manny being one-dimensional in this fight and not having a Plan B, something that would have been expected of an elite pugilist going into what was the biggest fight of his life.

Annnnnddd…on to “Shoulder Gate.” Of course, instead of just being able to say “I lost,” we get a story about Manny having a torn rotator cuff, which seems to be true the more it plays out. All fine and good, and I hope that Manny is able to heal well and continue to impress us after his surgery.

BUT

Why did this go completely unmentioned until after the fight was said and done? Yes, had Manny’s shoulder been unharmed, this could have impacted the fight in a way. However; there were plenty of opportunities for him to announce this injury, and it wasn’t even mentioned on the pre-fight questionnaire, a document that explicitly asks if the boxer currently has a shoulder injury. Also, according to Bleacher Report, the shoulder injury was the catalyst for impairing Manny to the extent that he was unable to spar for WEEKS leading up to the fight. Weeks, people. (And I ain’t talking Tony.)

I completely understand the hesitance to call off a super-giant-megafight that was a huge¬†pain in the butt to negotiate in the first place, (not to mention the on/off relationship of this fight to begin with) but really? If a boxer can’t throw punches because of a torn rotator cuff, what else is there to do? ¬†(I mean, I would have been pissed and all, but still.)

And then? This:

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Via a text to Stephen Smith, no less. That’s how I want to negotiate big deals. And is he just fighting the shoulder, or all of Manny? ¬†Because truly, it’s really only the shoulder that deserves a second chance.¬†

The circus starts all over again. Although probably not for as much money next time around. If this even happens, after all. It could take another six years.

In closing, for those of you who wanted an all out war (which, save an outstanding performance by Manny was never going to happen anyway), “Meet Mago.”

http://www.nytimes.com/2015/05/04/sports/meet-mago-former-heavyweight.html?_r=0

An outstanding NY Times article on Magomed Abdusalamov, a former heavyweight

These are the consequences of the brawls that the causal fans and the knockout salivaters seek. You can also look to Muhammed Ali and Freddie Roach for concrete examples of long-term boxing related injuries. As much as you may hate to admit it, boxing is just as much a sport of hitting and not being hit as it is anything else. The sweet science is the art of boxing, and what makes it equally as fun to watch as an all out brawl.

Long rant over. Be on the lookout for Canelo v Kirkland this Saturday, y’all, which should be a lot of fun. Also, HBO will be replaying the May v Pac fight prior to the broadcast of the Canelo fight, for anyone who would like a second view.

Stay safe, peeps. And thanks for hanging in there during the rant ūüôā

Fangirl Moment: Matthysse vs. Provodnikov

I found out about this fight when I was in the bath tub. Seriously.

The glorious day that this fight was announced was also ungodly cold. (But to keep this in perspective, I live in South Texas. So “ungodly cold” to me was really probably, like, 30-40 degrees). ¬†Even though I live in the Western world and have central air and heating, I have this habit of taking really, really hot baths at the end of the day when it’s cold outside ¬†(I promise, this is going somewhere) and catching up on Facebook nonsense on my phone. This combination, I’ve learned, is not always an optimal one for discovering new or particularly exciting info. Although I’ve yet to actually drop my phone in the tub (I’m sure that day is coming), the only other options are to make an excited face that no one else will see, scream (this is bad-we’ve all seen “Psycho.” Nothing good can come from screaming in the bathroom), or text the information to someone, which is lackluster at best. I went with a healthy combo of the second and fourth options, followed by running down the stairs yelling the news to my husband (clothed, I’m not a heathen).

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Where it all went down. (Not in an R. Kelly kind of way.) And zoom in at your own risk-I didn’t clean it before taking the picture.

Suffice it to say this fight is a big deal, and not only because it has “Fight of the Year” written all over it. Yes, this bout promises to be an all out war, with two of boxing’s strongest and most exciting figures slugging it out mercilessly. But it’s also proof of what most fans already know-that boxing is in no way dead. And that it sure as hell isn’t going anywhere anytime fast. (Especially not to make way for a sport that attracts the bedazzled, rhinestone Affliction t-shirt wearing masses. But I’m not naming any names). This is the fight that everyone wants to see (alongside May/Pac, of course), and they made it happen. And to be honest, no one had to. It wasn’t a mandatory fight, and even if these guys were “just” looking for a payday they could have looked at easier, less scary opponents. (So Matthysse isn’t *too* scary looking. But Provo? C’mon. The guy is like a shark. If you look at his eyes there’s nothing but a blank, calculated stare. And this is just during interviews).

Truly, this is a fight worth celebrating. And in honor of that, I’m going to make a (most likely wrong) prediction. I see Matthysse taking the W on this one, but I also don’t see Provodnikov getting KO’d that easily, or at all. Matthysse is an enormously strong guy, but Provo can take a punch like no other, and he’s not afraid to, either.

In closing, I’ll offer y’all a (butchered) quote from Timothy Bradley after his battle with Provodnikov. “Years of boxing and I never pissed blood. I pissed blood after that fight.”

This is like Christmas Eve, y’all. Enjoy it.

Chisme and Review Part 2

Because I like to rhyme and I was, um, out of time. (See what I did there?) Here’s your review of last night’s PBC fights and the weekly Chisme article, along with a surprise bonus topic (!)

Andy Lee vs. Peter Quillin

First of all, let’s address the elephant in the room: Is it really pronounced “Kwill-in” or should we all actually be saying “Kee-in”? (My vote is on the second one, btw.) And if it really is “Kwill-in,” then why the hell did his trunks say “100% Puro” on them? Given the empirical evidence presented,¬†“Kee-in” makes more sense. (Plus, as a South Texan, it’s an easier default. “Kwill-in” requires way too much effort. It’s just not natural.)

Now that the hard part is over, on to the fight. I’m sure that I speak for the majority (but with my Kanye-esque ego, I’m usually pretty sure of that) when I say that this fight turned out to be a surprisingly even battle. Although he was dormant in the first few rounds, Andy Lee made an astonishing comeback. I thought that Peter Quillin put on a great performance as well, which was a bit surprising seeing as he couldn’t even be bothered to make weight for the fight. I wasn’t a big Lee fan before, and had only seen him fight a handful of other times, but I really enjoyed his performance last night. He showed a lot of heart and refused to be defeated, even after suffering a knockdown and some hard blows (huh huh) early on in the bout.

Which brings me to what will surely¬†go down in history as “Toe Gate.” Lee went down in the third round, and while it was scored a knock down by the ref, it appeared as though ¬†Quillin had actually stepped on Lee’s foot causing him to fall. (And¬†this is me being generous-playback and a picture I saw on Facebook showed that Quillen stood on the man’s foot, causing a fall). Still, it was scored in favor of Quillen, which became a hot topic amongst fans (including my husband-never in my lifetime¬†have I heard so¬†many “See? I told you so’s” than with this particular incident AND ¬†that time when he predicted that Christian Bale would win an Oscar for his performance as Dicky Eklund in “The Fighter”) and was the subject of many a debate across the Interwebs.

So the fight was ruled a draw, which I thought was a very fair call. Yes, Toe Gate did play a role in points being taken from Lee that probably shouldn’t have been, but Lee wasn’t too successful in the early rounds of the fight anyway and really didn’t shine until the mid- to late rounds, so it was kind of a wash. Also, since judges in boxing are NEVER corrupt (shoutout, Texas!) a draw against Quillin in his home arena was really still a win, anyway. This is a fight that I would love to see a rematch of, especially if Quillin made weight.

Danny Garcia vs. Lamont Peterson

I had originally thought of writing a prediction article for this fight, but decided against it solely because it would be the least thought out and shortest article in history, basically culminating in something like this: “I hope that they both somehow manage to knock each other out at the same time, but that Lamont Peterson is able to miraculously get up, stagger over to Angel Garcia, knock him out too, and then fall back down.” Fueling my haterade filled perspective is this: I was, up until last week (two weeks ago?) a big Amir Khan fan (shame), and old habits die hard. One of the first fights to ever really excite me and engage my attention in the sport was Khan vs. Peterson, which was ruled in favor of Cheaterson (:D) who later was found to have tested positive for PEDs (performance enhancing drugs), specifically testosterone, and was stripped of the belt for that bout. And of course, we all remember that time when Garcia KO’d Khan (quite beautifully, really), in the third round of their face off, resulting¬†in me drunkenly laying on the floor of my apartment repeating “This is the worst thing that’s ever happened to me” over and over until it was time to go to bed. (And then mercilessly posting about it on FB every day for a week #sorrynotsorry).

Anyway.

All of this just to say that I came into this bout believing that the lesser of two evils is still an evil. And then I remembered that I’m no longer a Khan fan and can now come out of the proverbial closet to all of you about the fact that I was secretly excited to watch every single damn Garcia fight after the insipid Khan bout because he’s a talented and strong fighter and can be really, really fun to watch sometimes (except for the year 2014 as a whole). ¬†And Lamont Peterson was a foster kid, and I have a soft spot in my little black heart for foster kids. And shoutout to Al Haymon, who (I’m assuming) had a gag order against Angel Garcia for any and all ¬†bullshit leading up to the bout, because he was surprisingly quiet and the whole world thanks him for that. The whole world. Even snails. (Seriously, the week of April 5-April 11 should henceforth be dubbed “Thank Al Haymon Week” in honor of this great achievement). More realistically, what probably happened was that only the lucky peeps attending the press conference were privy to Angel Garcia’s nonsense and since PBC doesn’t televise their press conferences¬†and the rest of the world is preoccupied with Pac/Mayweather we just didn’t hear about it. Whatever happened, I’m in favor of it. Hell if it was the gag order option, Haymon can come to me next time to pay the court costs and filing fees.

But I digress (shocker). This fight also turned out differently than I thought it would, which is truly one of the best aspects of boxing as a whole. Strategies always change, and the best of the best accept this, adapt to it, and use it in their favor. Lamont Peterson showed exceptional¬†ring generalship (I LOVE that term, and always picture the subject of my rant in the same outfit as Cap’n Crunch whenever I am lucky enough to use it) for the first half of the fight and was really frustrating the hell out of Danny Garcia because he didn’t just stand there and engage. (Probably would have equaled suicide. Garcia is a really strong dude). But in the second half, the playing field was a little more level and it became more fun to watch. The two both engaged in showmanship, with the little foot shuffle dance off in the tenth round being my least favorite, but still funny nonetheless. Prior to the fight, Peterson was asked for his prediction as to when the fight would end, and he said the tenth round. This made me wonder if part of his strategy was to outbox Garcia in the first half and then engage more in the second as a means of survival, or if he just wasn’t up for a slug fest against Danny (again-suicide IMO) for the duration of the fight. Either way, it made for an enjoyable, if not slightly boring at times, bout.

I was not in any way, shape, or form surprised that Garcia took the win. From what I’ve observed in the past, using the strategy that Peterson adapted typically results in a loss because he just didn’t engage enough. (I’ve also noticed that it tends to be divisive among fans-some really enjoy it and others view it as-ugh- “running.”) Although Danny’s face would suggest otherwise-call it running if you want, but Peterson absolutely got in some really good shots against DSG. And the cynic in me (which is, like 95% of me) also had a feeling coming into this that Garcia would win, as he’s the favorite. Good fight, no need for a rematch. Hope that doesn’t happen.

And if you’re having a boring Sunday and would like to witness some really fun trash talk, go to the Twitter and check out Sugar Shane Mosley’s feed (@ShaneMosley_). He thought that Peterson should have won the fight and definitely did NOT keep that to himself.

Bonus: Trunk Show

Because every now and then, one of these dudes has trunks that are too glorious to go unnoticed. The¬†inaugural nod for this section¬†goes to Danny “Swift” Garcia and his giraffe print trunks. Giraffe. At first glance I thought that the boxing world was being treated to yet another set of leopard print trunks, but Danny had another idea in mind. Whether this is a personal throwback to Geoffrey the Toys “R” Us giraffe in honor¬†of more innocent times or just a personal favorite of DSG’s, the boxing community thanks you.

Chisme

My favorite, Keith “One Time” Thurman, called out Amir Khan on “Tha Boxing Voice” for being a “chump,” “soft,” ¬†and a worse cherry picker than Mayweather. And it was pretty amazing. He also challenged him to a fight tomorrow (um, which would actually be today, since it happened last night) and said that Khan wasn’t ready for him, which I completely agree with. If y’all are interested in watching the video, it can be found on YouTube.

Adrien Broner was spotted at the PBC fight last night ringside wearing a shirt that looked like it was borrowed from DJ Jazzy Jeff right before being thrown out of Uncle Phil’s mansion. Not really gossip, but worth noting anyway. In other Broner news, he called out Danny Garcia for a fight in September. This would be a good candidate for a PBC fight later in the year, and one that would likely make for an interesting matchup. (Not to mention that it would likely garner a mention in the¬†“Trunk Show” section). Garcia’s only request was to make the bout happen in Philly so this could be something to look forward to.

Robert Garcia was interviewed on Grantland’s “The Ropes” podcast a couple of weeks ago (I’m a little behind, obvi), and confirmed that Marcos Maidana has put on a of weight and is taking a year off from boxing. If anyone deserves a year off, it’s definitely Maidana who had one hell of a 2014, but the weight gain is a little disheartening, although not at all uncommon amongst fighters. Also noteworthy was Garcia’s statement that Marcos’s younger brother, Fabian Maidana, (who will be fighting on this Saturday’s Chavez Jr undercard) is a better fighter than Marcos. I guess this is TBA until we all see more of him.

Sergio Martinez could be announcing a career decision very soon. Were it up to me (unfortunately, it’s not), I’d advise him to retire. Sergio was an amazing and engaging fighter during his time, but his age and his bad knees have caught up with him. But man, it was so much fun to watch while it lasted.

After announcing a bout with Chris Algieri last week much to my chagrin (and everyone else with a pulse-you know you were awake nights lamenting this), Amir Khan pulled a “just kidding,” and is now stating that the fight hasn’t yet been finalized. This was probably in response to the backlash he received from everyone in the world (even snails) after announcing that nonsense. Kell Brook has finalized his next bout against Frankie Gavin on May 30, so I’m guessing that ship has sailed for now, anyway (probably forever).

PSA-This Saturday (4/18) is going to be an amazing night of fights. Chavez Jr is fighting Fonfara ¬†on Showtime, and the highly, highly HIGHLY anticipated Mathysse vs. Provodnikov (this could actually be a match where both fighters knock each other out at the same time) is on HBO. Get ready for some fangirl madness coming up, y’all.

Also-notice a lack of Mayweather/Pac chisme? Wanna know why? Stay tuned.