USS Cunningham will get another shot at a title, facing Matt Godfrey, but will he ever get a shot at building a fanbase?
Dan Rafael interviewed Jerry Jones and got his thoughts on why he's willing to shell out so much to bring a fight between Floyd Mayweather Jr. and Manny Pacquiao to his brand spankin' new stadium. In interesting glimpse into the mind of a sports mogul. As an aside, Rafael mentions that a location in the Democratic Republic of the Comgo (f/k/a Zaire) is also interested. Probably the last biggest fight before this one (Ali-Foreman) was in Zaire, and there hasn't been a big fight there since then. I wonder if President Mobutu would be willing to bankrupt his country again just to bring the biggest fight in the world over there.
As might have been expected based on past history, Maddalone was the aggressor, but Mormeck sat back and picked the more accurate shots. As also might be expected, his stamina reportedly looked pretty awful, and that's probably not getting any better now that he's fighting 20 pounds north of his best weight. In another fight I didn't even realize was happening, Jhonny Gonzalez came back with a knockout win over Marlon Aguillar.
Don King Productions won the purse bid for a whopping $65,000. Cunningham might be the best cruiserweight in the world, and between inactivity and lowball bids on his mandatories, he isn't making squat. It's a wonder Don King still has clients.
Speaking of the Don's recent failures, The Galaxxy Warrior is finally moving on to greener pastures, although to King's credit, Campbell is a much bigger star now than he was when he signed with King. Hopefully GBP matches him up with one of their other rising junior welterweights, like Marcos Maidana or Victor Ortiz. As for Mora, no word on whether they'll try to enforce that signed contract Kelly Pavlik skipped out on.
Lebedev knocked out Enzo Maccaranelli in his last fight, earning Macca the "Glass Chin of the Year" award. Ismailov is a former title challenger, but not really much more than a stepping stone for the Russian to move up the rankings. Reportedly, Lebedev laid out the heavy artillery early and late, although Ismailov was able to outbox him at times.
This one was pointed out in a Fanshot by Kyle Askine, but as they say over on DRaysBay, "nobody reads fanshots." Anyway, this is easily the best boxing-related journalism I've read in years. Just a completely heartbreaking story about the fruitless search for Sweet Jimmy, Muhammad Ali's fourth opponent, who ended up living off the grid in the ghettos of Miami.
More puffery on Manny Pacquiao. Money quote comes from Lennox Lewis, who's on a roll lately, who says that Manny's influence in the Philippines is similar to what Nelson Mandela's was in South Africa. But even if it's drivel, it's still nice to see the most mainstream publications paying some more attention to boxing lately.
I mentioned this in my write-up of Rigondeaux's fight last night, but this deserves a bit more attention. As people may remember, Rigondeaux tried defecting twice, and the first time he signed with Gary Hyde, and the second time he signed with Arena Box. Up to this point, he's been fighting under Arena, but Hyde won a lawsuit earlier in the week that gives him promotional rights over Rigondeaux through 2012. Of the prominent Cubans who have defected over the past few years, about a third of them are signed with Hyde, but they've mostly been fighting in Ireland. No word on how this affects Rigondeaux's burgeoning American career, or whether he'll need to be pulled from his scheduled Friday Night Fights card. I won't have any complaints as long as Hyde sticks to Arena's general plan - keep him with Freddie Roach, have him get on U.S. TV often, and push to have him fighting for a title by the end of 2010 or early 2011. He's already 28 years old, which is ancient for a guy his size, and he only has a few prime years left. No need to waste them with incompetent management.