Back again with a new edition of the Scotch and Cigar Club is the one and only Ted "The Bull" Sares.
* * * * * * * *
Welcome to the latest edition of the Club (17th overall). We have some great sounds, smokes, and scotch. Tonight, we also have a marvelous variety of cheeses, some humus and flatbread. We also feature Greek olives, ripe grapes, stuffed artichokes, and some chilled slivers of wild Boar to go along with an array of fine single malt scotches (Glenmorangie 18, Dalmore 12, Glen Garioch, and Johnnie Walker Gold are among them) and a humidor of mixed deluxe Cuban cigar are among them.s (including Bolivar, Juan Lopez, Punch, San Cristobal, and Vegueros). No more fooling around in the Club-we are going first class. . Hell, tonight, "I've got everything from egg roll to I'll be dammed if I know." Anyone recognize where that line came from and who said it?
As for music, I'll play anything you want as long as it's not Country, Dixieland or New Age. Fusion (as in Kenny G) is also tightly screened. Tonight we focus on the bluesmen of the past-a dying breed. Buddy Guy, B.B. King, Magic Slim, Luther Johnson, "Big Bill" Morganfield, Robert Cray and some others who have that Delta beat. BUT, in sharp contrast, we also have Eminem's Recovery and he hasn't lost a beat. Ludacris is also here and doing "Sex Room," "My Chick Bad," and more. Ludacris is being Ludacris, Usher is also in the house doing tunes from his Here I Stand album. We are going eclectic in this club session.
Now, let's quickly move on to boxing and please don't hesitate to inject your own boxing topics, opinions, disagreement, or agreement.
1) Pound for Pound Top Dozen
Again, this is simply a snapshot in time as of July 9, 2010 and is much different from my last listing.
- Manny Pacquiao
- Floyd Mayweather Jr.
- Chad Dawson
- Lucian Bute
- Andre Ward
- Sergio Martinez
- Celestino Caballero
- Paul Williams
- Nonito Donaire
- Vic Darchinyan
- Timothy Bradley
- Poonsawat Kratingdaenggym
Others closing in include Juan Manuel Lopez, Yonnhy Perez, Juan Manuel Marquez, Ivan Calderon, and Marcos Maidana. If JML beats Concepcion, he will vault into my top dozen.
2) Prospect of the Month: Brad Solomon
Brad Solomon (12-0) is somewhat of a cutie. He fights out of Lafayette, Louisiana and has taken down two highly touted and undefeated prospects in Puerto Rican Kenny Galarza and The New Ray Robinson. He totally dominated (and exposed) Galarza with his in and out movement and superb counterpunching along with superior hand speed. Two judges scored the fight for Solomon 100-89 and the third also had him winning, 99-90. He is a three time National Golden Gloves Champion, once in the Welterweight and twice in the Junior Welterweight divisions, so he is well-schooled.
3) The David Lemieux Watch
After annihilating Elvin Ayala on June 11 at the Uniprix Stadium in Montreal, many observers have become true believers. I was scheduled to be at ringside for this one, but I am glad I couldn't make it. Montreal is a long way to travel for a one round blowout.
This was a good measuring stick for the 21 year old charismatic Lemieux who continues to fight at an active Old School-type pace, and has become the second hottest boxing celebrity in Quebec (Lucien Bute being the first, of course).
4) Mismatches of the Month and Worst Record of the Month
Medgoen 3-K Battery Singsurat (66-6) beat Spaniard Alex Munoz who was making his pro debut in one that went the full 6 rounds in Thailand. Since losing badly to Nobuto Ikehara in 2006, 3-K has gone 25-2. The two losses were against Mikio Yasuda (14-4-2) and Jorge Arce (47-4-1). The 25 wins came against opponents with an astounding combined won-lost record of 16-27-1. Fifteen were making their pro debut! And yes, this is the same fighter who beat Manny Pacquiao o back in 1999.3-K's batteries have long been dead. He need to retire now.
Alexander Petkovic (39-4-3) beat the very bland Jermaine Bland (0-5) in Germany. There was no need for a decision in this one.
Talented Kengo Nagashima (39-4-2) took the measure of Pongsatorn Srisuree who was unwisely making his pro debut in Japan. Inexplicitly, the fight went the full 8 rounds. Maybe Kengo needed rounds?
However, in a case of the worm turning, Luis Alejandro Moreno (0-0-2) held Cesar Emilio Domine (38-16-7) to a draw in Buenos Aires.
Meanwhile Czech light welterweight has run up the worst record of the month going 1-40-1.
5) Excerpt from Planet Boxing
A few posters have asked for an excerpt from my new book, Planet Boxing. The following is taken from my chapter titled "Island Hopping":
"Seven truly incredible upsets occurred involving Jamaican boxers starting with Trevor Berbick's 1980 unforgettable ambush KO of Big John Tate in Montreal, a fight which set the stage for six more shockers.
"Welterweight champion Lloyd "Ragamuffin" Honeyghan (43-5), nicknamed "Ragamuffin" due to his Jamaican heritage, defeated heavily favored Donald Curry in 1986. Curry, nicknamed the "Cobra," was being touted at the time as a pound for pound fighter, but would never be the same and, more importantly, the loss thwarted a dream match with Marvelous Marvin Hagler for the middleweight championship in what could have been one of the richest fight in history..
"In an equally stunning upset, welterweight Kirkland Laing, 43-12-1, beat the great Roberto Duran in 1982. Duran would recover from this shocker; Laing would never capitalize on it.
"In 1993, Michael Bentt knocked out heavily favored Tommy Morrison in 1993 in an incredible first round upset. Morrison's camp had terribly underestimated Bentt and did a poor job of researching his Michaels amateur credentials.
"Who could forget the great Simon "Mantequilla" Brown, WBC and IBF Welterweight Titlist, who KO'd Hall of Famer Terry Norris in 1993 for the WBC light middleweight Title in Ring Magazine's "Upset of the Year?"
"In 1997, Keith "The Brooklyn Assassin" Mullings shocked the boxing world with a 9th round TKO over WBC Light Middleweight Title-holder Terry Norris (again).
"Glen Johnson became a legend when he knocked out Roy Jones on September 26, 2004. Nobody ever expected to see Jones knocked cold but that's what happened, and it was a performance that garnered Glen the 2005 Ring Magazine and USA Today "Fighter of the Year" honors.
"What made these fights memorable? They were all major upsets, and they were all pulled off by Jamaican fighters.
"Speaking of upsets, Ovill "The Upsetter" McKenzie (18-9) is a Jamaican light heavyweight who fights out of the U.K, and lost 6 of his first 8 fights. He then won 8 in a row against truly awful opposition before being waxed by Dean Francis in one round. After losing 2 more, he has settled down and has won his last 4 bouts against stiff opposition. Indeed, one of those wins was a TKO over heavily favored Irishman Darren "The Raging Bull" Corbett (27-4-1 coming in). This occurred during the 'Prizefighter' Cruiserweight Tournament Semi-Final. "The Upsetter" lived up to his nickname as he went on to defeat rugged Terry Dunstan (20-2) and John "Buster" Keaton (28-17) to win the Cruiserweight Prizefighter Tournament. Keaton had waxed Dean Francis in one canto to reach the finals. McKenzie received the Prizefighter trophy from Barry Hearn as the crowd accorded "The Upsetter" a standing ovation for his 3 upsets in one thrilling night of boxing at London's Earls Court. He also received a hefty check for his achievements.
"That win over Corbett, the former the IBO Inter-Continental Light-Heavyweight Title holder before he retired in 2004, may not have qualified Ovill to take his place among those Jamaican fighters who perpetrated great ring upsets. But the thing is, Ovill did it three times in one night on May 19, 2009."
6) Boxing in the U.S. Is in Trouble -- Big Trouble
"We're going to make an example of James Toney."
"Boxing will exist whilever somebody can make an honest rouble from it, and somebody always will. But it is fading, broken beyond repair..."
"We're out of the heavyweight division."
At least I believe it is and this is the first time I have felt that way in over 60 years or back to the days when the mob ran things. The other day, I was in a Barnes and Nobles and looked to see if they had any boxing magazines. They had The Ring, but no others. However, they did have about 7 magazines on UFC/MMA. It doesn't take a marketing research expert to compute that one. Some say it's a socioeconomic shift as more college graduates are taking up MMA given their wrestling skills. Maybe so, but something is happening. The kid I golfed with today (he is 24) said only Mayweather and Manny are worth watching. I said what about the Klitschkos and he said who?
Moreover, former boxing strongholds like Chicago, Detroit and L.A. have been replaced by Southern Florida and other new "hotbeds" of boxing. Even New York City is not what it once was. And big athletes now look to football and basketball as a way to big money. The heavyweight boxing situation in the U.S is dreadful.
Amateur boxing in the U.S is in dire straits and anyone who doesn't think so need only look at how we have done in the Olympics.
Watching Pavlik fight Espino on PPV is a forerunner of what we can expect in the way of "free" boxing on television. This is especially impactful because young people have become more discretionary with their funds and paying to watch the likes of Pavlik-Espino is hardly a bargain.
Boxing is now all about multiple champions, unworthy mandatory challengers, and general confusion that come to be associated with sanctioning bodies. Boxing has morphed toward the casino industry, and public broadcasts are a thing of the past.
All in all, there are many negative variables coming from different directions and their collective impact will have less than a positive result. To repeat, boxing in the U.S is in trouble.
Oh yes, If James Toney loses to Randy Couture, that will not help very much.
What are your views on this?
7) Generational Bias
Looking through the prism of nostalgia makes everything seem better and I like to play out old school memories just like other old timers. However, I also try to be thoughtful and objective when making comparisons between the past and the present-and that's where the issue of generational prejudice comes in (some call it "era" prejudice).
The task is to engage facts before nostalgia. The lesson is to take into account all essential variables when making comparisons between old and modern. Variable such as number of fights, era (for example, the 70‘s were a great time for heavyweights and the 80‘s for middleweights), stamina, training techniques and methodology, records, style, chin, KO percentages, skill-sets, entire body of work, quality of opposition, management, etc. When this is done, myth is stripped away from facts. When this is done, I am not engaging in generational prejudice, something that most writers seem to do.
What do you think?
8) Margarito seeks license in Nevada
"They should tell him to take a hike."
By the time this Club Session is posted, we will know if Antonio Margarito has received a license to fight in Nevada. As Tim Smith says, they should tell him to take a hike because Margarito hasn't taken any responsibility for what almost happened that night in the Mosley fight. Clearly, he will have to display remorse to the Nevada commission, but if he does, the question should be posed as to why he waited until now to show remorse.
Smith goes on to nail it in a New York Daily News piece dated July 10, 2010:
"This is all about money for Top Rank and Margarito, who is 32 years old and running out of top-earning years. But there is a larger principle involved and that is whether a man knowingly dishonored his sport and deliberately sought to inflict permanent damage on an opponent. The Nevada Commission should have told Margarito to find another line of work."
Even though there could be any number of super interesting fights featuring the Tornado (Martinez, Manny, Cotto, etc), I say NO. What say you?
Flash: "Breaking new-News: Nevada State Athletic Commission Say Antonio Margarito Must Reapply For Licence In California."
Well, now Margo may have to go back to California, but if he does, the question should be: Why did you go to Nevada first? The way in which he is being guided here should be a segment for "Dumb and Dumber." Good grief, go to Cali, get on your knees and beg forgiveness. If that doesn't work, fight in Mexcio and then just go away. You were once my favorite fighter. That's the real sting in this entire matter. You betrayed those of us who were behind you and now you compund it by becoming a member of a comedy group. The Tijuana Tornado indeed.
For an interesting boxing tour, visit the author's website at www.tedsares.com. Also, please sign the guest book so I know you dropped by?