Who’s Your (Baby) Daddy?

Speaking from experience (and I’m sure my fellow boxing enthusiast sisters can agree), SO much of being a female boxing fan is combating the idea that we’re only in it for the hot, shirtless man meat. While this certainly can be true in some instances (Sergio Martinez, for example, a God among men who has probably always “woke up like this”), it is definitely not always the case. But instead of refuting this shady side of female boxing fandom, for the purposes of this piece I’ve decided to just go with it-and talk some hot boxing man meat. (TBH, that was gross even just to type, but it’s staying because I’m still laughing at it.)

Before jumping into the fun, a couple of side notes: First, this isn’t based solely on looks. (Just mostly) As a woman of substance, I’ve put thought into additional characteristics or traits that I feel also make the man attractive. And second-as was brought up to me recently after proclaiming my love of Pau Gasol- I have a thing for Hispanics. So there’s a pretty decent chance that this list will be swayed in their favor.

One:

It should come as no great surprise to anyone who has interacted with me on the most remote of boxing talk levels who my number one pick is. Not only does this man have THE BEST hair in boxing (and pretty much the free world),  he’s also an intellectual, which is a bit of a rare find in this sport. He’s a man of varied talents, including playing the long flute thingy and meditating, he enjoys reading, AND he likes dogs. (He also drives a Prius, for the environmentally conscious gal). He can switch from being soft and well-spoken to kind of scary, kill-you-in-the-street-and-leave-your-body-in-the-trunk-of-a-Prius at seemingly the drop of a dime (which I know for a fact some girls find hot):


Number One with a bullet is Keith Thurman. (Bonus points for the boxing moniker in regards to insemination. Because as we all know, in baby making as well as in knock outs, all it really takes is “One Time.”)

Two

Throughout my time as a chick, I’ve heard guys almost ENDLESSLY describe this apparent mythological female when in search of their ideal mate. Someone with a great sense of humor who can sit at home with him on the couch and genuinely enjoy watching a game (or a fight), but can also look super glam and gorgeous on his arm at a party. A girl who is smart enough to carry on a conversation but not above silly bar talk while knocking back a few beers with friends. Someone who can effortlessly navigate life on her own but still needs his help with things that make absolutely no sense, like Excel spreadsheets and any kind of finance talk because all of the words just mold together into this kind of weird, abstract drivel.  The veritable “lady in the streets and [redacted] in the sheets.” And the male form of this unicorn is none other than:


Leo Santa Cruz. Guaranteed, if you are a woman and are stranded on the side of the highway with a flat, LSC is pulling over to change your tire. (Or he’ll at least wait with you until AAA arrives.)

Three 

Friends, remember the cute-but-goofy guy back in school? I’m talking middle, high school, or college here. Elementary school doesn’t count, because EVERYONE is goofy (and usually covered in boogers) so this species of male wouldn’t necessarily stand out. A guy like this probably exists in most workplaces as well. He’s exactly as the title states: cute but goofy. And sometimes  a little too goofy, where you might start to question your attraction to him but then realize that it’s an endearing trait. He’s infinitely confident and was probably born comfortable in his own skin, and he always makes you (and everyone else) laugh even though he typically relies on physical humor and not so much witty banter. If you haven’t figured this one out yet,  you more than likely don’t spend much time on social media. Number three:

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Vasyl Lomachenko. I bet he’s really fun to hang out with, but definitely upstages your Halloween costume every year.

Four

I hate myself for Number Four but there’s no escaping the truth. Sometimes, you just can’t help being attracted to the all encompassing popular guy. He excels at everything, he’s uber confident, hella likeable, and it’s almost like he can’t lose (even though you’re of the opinion that he’s been handed AT LEAST one L by a Cuban contender):

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 Number Four is Canelo Alvarez, damn it.

Five

There’s something overtly attractive about a pensive, sullen, drama queen of a man. Someone who seems to carry the weight of the world atop his tattooed shoulders.  A man who rations his smiles for a few interactions with his family and riding go karts on 24/7. A man who rarely shies away from referring to himself in third person; a trait that for him merely teeters on the line of douchbaggery, while in others is a definitive leapfrog into asshat territory:

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Last on our list is Miguel Cotto. I wonder if he laughs at knock knock jokes, y’all.  Clearly, mystery is part of his charm.

If you’ve got connects to any of the above or find yourself bored on social media, I can be found on Facebook by searching “Junk in the Trunks” or on Twitter @littlejenna37

Damn the Man! Save The Advocates!*

If you ever find yourself driving down the intersection between Buena Vista and San Jacinto in a residential area on San Antonio’s West side, be prepared to see it. No, it’s not the proverbial  bird, or plane (but there is a hero involved).  It’s a boxing ring. Outside. Covered under a pavilion named after the donor and everyone’s favorite Chairman of the Board of NuStar Energy, Bill Greehey, and situated alongside the two story structure which houses it’s  office space. 

Meet: The Advocates Social Services. (But you can call them The Advocates.) 

A brief history: Started in 1978 by Executive Director Charlie Mata, The Advocates strived to assist the needy in obtaining necessary resources such as food and medical insurance. In 1999, the  Boxing Youth Program, a free ancillary service created by Mata’s son, Jason, was born. Jason saw the program as a new and creative way to help youth in the area stay off the streets, in addition to overcoming age old issues of  bullying, poor school attendance, and low self-esteem. Now, four days a week, youth can be seen diligently practicing their footwork, jabs, and shadow boxing outdoors on the grounds of the agency. 

Although the program itself is situated in the Prospect Hill area, it’s outreach spans far greater than that. Data provided by Mata show that in the years spanning 2013-2015, youth enrolled in San Antonio ISD, Edgewood ISD, Eastside ISD, Northside ISD, South San ISD and even a private school student benefitted from the program. (For you out of towners, that basically encompasses three different geographic areas of the city.) Additionally, the program has a contract with Haven for Hope and provides after-school services for homeless children residing at the shelter.  Referrals are also received through the Bexar County Juvenile Probation Office.

And while the program could stop there-it doesn’t. Jason stresses the importance of community outreach to participants  through such outlets as the Justice for Youth March in 2015. In addition, the agency has played host to several  public seminars on topics affecting the youth themselves, such as bullying and abuse. Most famously, Mata spoke on a panel alongside champion Sergio “Maravilla” Martinez and Olympian Marlen Esparza at an anti-bullying event in 2013. 

But now, the agency is in trouble. While currently operating Monday-Thursday from 5:30-7:00 in the evenings, The Boxing Youth Program may soon be forced to close it’s doors due to high operating costs, low (consistent) volunteer turnout, and few donors. Mata has appealed to funding sources to no avail, and the agency may consequently resort to  drastically cutting services as a result. 

Now-let’s be honest. For some reason, there’s still a stigma attached to a sport that’s basic premise is to beat the pulp out of the guy standing in front of you. While true fans of the sport understand that there’s much more to it than that, at face value this is what boxing touts, and it could be a clear barrier to funding that Mata is experiencing.  However, an important aspect of the program is that it provides non-combat training in a combat sport. (No, that’s not a typo.)

In essence, youth are peer trained in the basics of the sport: how to throw a punch, perfect their stance, move their feet, and (most importantly) protect themselves at all times, all without actually sparring against each other. Oh, at some point this can be introduced, but it’s completely voluntary and there’s no expectation or pretense of it occurring. Most importantly,  the onus is on participants to prove that they are mature enough to take on the responsibility of competing in the sweet science. This is proven not only physically, but through their character and actions as well, both inside the program and out.  And for those who prove capable and choose to compete, Mata is with you. The boxing program has boasted competitors in the Golden Gloves tournament in San Antonio and has hosted it’s own tournaments as well. 

So, if you’ve gotten this far, you’re probably wondering how you can help. You can start by checking out the agency’s website: boxingsanantonio.com, Facebook page: The Advocates Boxing Youth Program, and Twitter page: @TASSSAT.  Read about their programs in greater depth (by writers more skilled than I), and see for yourself all the good that The Advocates have done. If you live nearby and would like to volunteer (or have additional questions) contact Jason Mata at jmata146@gmail.com. And don’t keep quiet about it-spread the word about all the good that can come from punching something. 

Facebook: Junk in the Trunks

Twitter: @junk_n_trunx

*Obvi, there’s no “Man” to truly damn here, but if there’s a person alive who can knowingly pass up an “Empire Records” reference when one is so blatantly handed to him/her, I hope I never meet them.

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.