No huge surprises here, but rising Mexican star Saul Alvarez says he's not afraid of Manny Pacquaio, and that he thinks he'll be able to beat Pacquaio in about a year, after taking three or four more fights. Alvarez is on the fast track to stardom, as the 20-year old is already well known in Mexico and created considerable buzz in the U.S. in his last two fights. He's taking a small step up against Lovemore N'Dou in a few weeks on HBO Latino, but don't be too shocked if his promoter, Golden Boy, starts to push a fight between him and Shane Mosley in the near future. While Mosley is a Golden Boy partner, he still thinks he has more left in the tank than he actually does, and I'm sure Oscar de la Hoya is savoring the opportunity to have Alvarez beat a star to make a star.
Well that's a shocker. After being postponed twice, Evander Holyfield's fight against ironbeard Sherman Williams has been cancelled. This is Holyfield's third fight in a row that has been cancelled after being announced (although his fight against Franz Botha eventually did happen about six months after it was supposed to). Holyfield is rumored to be looking at a fight against Brian Nielsen in the winter. In other Holyfield news, he's helping out Olympic silver medalist Zhang Zhilei. While the Chinese government had indicated that they would let Zhilei and a couple other medalists go pro after Beijing, they're still all amateurs at this point.
Irish boxer Andy Lee is set to rematch Brian (Bryan?) Vera on February 4 on ESPN2. Lee, currently Emmanuel Steward's only notable prospect, was on the verge of a title shot when he wore out and got knocked out by Vera nearly three years ago. Since then, he's rattled off nine straight wins, although the best of those is probably against former European champ Affif Belghecham. This may be a shot at redemption, and while Lee is perfectly good at fighting like a Steward fighter, we'll have to see if he's any less stiff now. He literally looks like the Fighting Irish mascot in there.
Gary Shaw says Kimbo Slice can't seem to focus on preparing for his Boxing career. Not that it really matters. With that beard of his (not the literal one, but the one that got cracked by Seth Petruzelli), he's pretty damn unlikely to actually make it far as a heavyweight in boxing. While it might not be THE most important attribute in a boxer, very few fighters can make it to the top levels of the sport with a chin like his, and those who can generally are so excellent in other areas that they can offset the deficiency.
I reported this about a year and a half ago, but it seems that NBA basketball player Ron Artest is still dead serious about trying a boxing career after his basketball career is over. Artest, who stands at 6'7" and 260 pounds of muscle, says he's been training like a boxer for the last three years, and he wants to jump into the deep end as soon as he's ready. Of course, in the same article, Artest says he also wants to try out for the NFL, so who knows how serious this really is. The former all-star and defensive player of the year is probably most famous to outsiders for attacking a fan in the stands, leading to a riot, several years ago.
It looks like Britains top two light heavyweights may be headed on a collision course. Nathan Cleverly and Tony Bellew are both basically prospects at this point, but the fight might make sense for everyone involved. Cleverly is the mandatory to face German titlist Juergen Braehmer, but Braehmer's handlers seem to be in no rush to let their man in the ring with Cleverly, who fights more and more like Paul Williams every time he steps between the ropes (warts and all). Bellew is the current Commonwealth titlist, although he struggled his last time out against relatively unknown Bob Ajisafe.
David Lemieux will be fighting in Montreal in less than a month. His rumored opponent had been Ishe Smith, who would have been a solid test, but Smith turned down the fight as he said it was too short of notice. At this point, expect the fight to be against someone a few steps down from Smith. Lemieux is also scheduled to take a title eliminator against Marco Antonio Rubio next year, although Lemieux says he's happy to take on the Martinez-Williams winner right now, if that's what they want.