Tomato Cans: Margarito, Hopkins, Haye, Toney and More

As he closes in on his 46th birthday, Bernard Hopkins could get another crack at the light heavyweight championship. (Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images)

I haven't done one of these "Tomato Cans" posts in a while, but I've got a lot of thoughts kicking around that I have only brief thoughts on, so what the hell.

* Antonio Margarito is going to get licensed in Texas. It's going to happen. Those who want to pat California on the back for their 5-to-1 ruling on not giving Margarito his license back should feel free to do so, but it's not going to matter a whole lot. Once the commission members started asking the questions, it was all but sealed. California wasn't going to say yes. But now, since Margarito spent five hours sitting through the hearing, he's in an easy position to receive a license from any state that says that they think he has been "rehabilitated" and that they feel he's done his time. It will be Texas. The deal to host Pacquiao-Margarito at Cowboys Stadium is all but done. Texas has had no problems licensing fighters who couldn't get in in other states before, and we're not exactly talking about guys (Holyfield, Valero, etc.) who were going to be fighting in bouts that might put 70,000 into a giant stadium in Arlington. We discussed in this thread that it was essentially a show trial on Wednesday, and it was. There's no getting around that if you're being logical. Margarito was never going to be licensed in California, but for going through the motions with the CSAC, he's free to seek a license elsewhere, and they had to know that's exactly what was going to happen.

* New light heavyweight champion Jean Pascal discussed the possibility of fighting 45-year-old Bernard Hopkins on Friday Wednesday Night Fights last night. Hopkins looked really worn out and tired in his pathetic "fight" with Roy Jones Jr. in April, and even though Pascal is hardly a flawless champion, his youthful ability to move might in itself give Hopkins serious issues. I know he handled Kelly Pavlik with ease, but that was two years ago now, and all he's done since then is tune up with Enrique Ornelas and walk through a foul-fest with Roy. I'd much rather see Pascal pick on someone his own age. I've had enough of the world's best light heavyweight kicking the feet out from under oldsters.

* Can you believe that after another full year of talk, David Haye has wound up not fighting either Klitschko brother, and will instead have to face Audley Harrison? For all his big game, that would leave Haye with a heavyweight resume of Monte Barrett, Nikolai Valuev, John Ruiz and Harrison. Oh, and that fight with Tomasz Bonin in 2007. Don't want to forget that one.

* The WBC's incredible bias has gotten way out of control. Erik Morales will be fighting for a "Diamond belt" at 140 against Willie Limond. Oh, and by the way: Morales is ranked the No. 2 contender at 140 pounds, a division in which he has never fought a single fight in his entire career.

* A few UK-based fighters are taking big shots in the near future. On September 4, Ricky Burns takes a crack at Roman "Rocky" Martinez, who we have ranked No. 1 at 130 pounds. The week after that, Jason Booth tries his luck against Steve Molitor for a 122-pound title. Burns and Booth will have home field advantage, but that won't be the case for "The Boxing Bin Man," Rendall Munroe, when he targets Toshiaki Nishioka on October 24. All three of the UK guys will be considered heavy underdogs, and of the three, I suspect the tough Booth has the best shot at pulling the upset.

* Pound-for-pound, Showtime has flat-out killed HBO this year. And that's even handicapping for Gus Johnson.

* I hope after tonight's easy wins for Erislandy Lara and Yordanis Despaigne, we see the current crop of talented Cubans take some steps up soon. Yuriorkis Gamboa, Odlanier Solis and Guillermo Rigondeaux, like Lara and Despaigne, don't need all this seasoning, and it's not like they're pulling in the big dough for these fights, either. Not all will be P4P guys or anything, but it's an exceptional group of talent and with the way boxing careers can slip away overnight, I hate feeling like we're missing out on true prime years to do the same old boxing build-a-record with guys who are levels beyond needing it.

* I'll guarantee Tomasz Adamek fights a Klitschko before David Haye does. Even if Adamek loses a shocker to Michael Grant.

* I have rarely felt that any fight looked on paper as much like "going through the motions" as the coming Mikkel Kessler-Allan Green bout. Green was frustrated and clearly disheartened by the dominant performance he faced against Andre Ward in his first Super Six bout, and with a minuscule chance that he'll advance into the elimination rounds, I'm having trouble seeing the moody Green get himself up for a fight in Denmark with Kessler, though a win could net him a title belt and another big payday, even if he didn't advance. And on the topic of the Super Six, if those whisperings about Andre Dirrell pulling out instead of fighting Andre Ward come true, I think that'll say more than enough about him as a fighter.

* There has been some minor talk about Humberto Soto fighting Miguel Acosta if they both win their next very winnable fights. Don't bank on it. Acosta actually has a pulse and knocked out the man Soto refused to fight (Urbano Antillon).

* Miguel Cotto, undersized and all, will tear Julio Cesar Chavez Jr. to pieces on December 4. It will not be close. Cotto, even past his best after years of grueling fights, is simply a different class of fighter, and Chavez has seen nothing remotely close to him in his entire 43-fight career. Freddie Roach may be a wizard, but some things are just beyond coaching.

* Whatever the reported amount of buys for Shane Mosley-Sergio Mora winds up being, subtract 20,000 or so and I suspect you'll be closer to the real number. That or Saul Alvarez is already a draw.

* I've got the funny feeling that James Toney will lose by DQ at UFC 118, then claim he was too extreme for MMA. With the way Vitali Klitschko chooses opponents nowadays, it might work out.

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