In the wake of Cleverly, Price and Berto’s demise there has been a fair bit of speculation over who else has been oversold and underperformed. Being the slack tongued (or fingered on the internet) fellow I am, I thought I’d list my very speculative and rather biased list of fighters who may or may not be who they are cracked up to be and let the BLH rabble discuss.
A few qualifications;
This isn’t a list of over hyped fighters that are actually very good and have shown so. Yeah Matthysse might not be the next Pacman, but he is good and has some good wins, so he won’t be featured here.
The list gets more speculative as it goes down, I start with the fighters I do think won’t amount to much and move on to some that could well make it.
Some fighters such as Tyson Fury aren’t on the list because the general consensus is that they aren’t a future world champion despite the amount of talk they generate.
Credit to the other posters who have already been discussing this in comments or fanposts.
1. Kell Brook – Injuries might have thwarted his world title shot but he hasn’t exactly being gunning for another one since it fell through. Suggests to me that either he or his management think he isn’t ready. Will he ever be? I’m not so sure. Kell is a fighter I can see getting found out.
2. Charvez Jr – I’m a little late on calling this one, because most of the internet will probably agree with me, making him hyped by his promoters/team and no one else. I can’t see him doing any better in the 168 division, might make a good cash cow for other fighters in the division though.
3. Zou Shiming – the most interesting question with Zou is how far will Bob Arum be able to take him. It will be an interesting examination of how much cash and fame Arum can drip out of his limp performances against subpar opposition. As a Chinese Olympian Arum smells a big Asian market for this fighter, the problem is he isn’t that good.
4. Deontay Wilder - I’ve seen a few of his Kos, and he can definitely crack. I think much of the hype around Wilder is US fan optimism. Most of his KOs seem to come via a setup with the jab and then a big looping smack. Not sure this will work against an opponent that is switched on. Deontay Wilder could become a world champion, but if he does it would suggest to me that the heavy weight division is really weak.
5. Gary Russell Jr – Who is this?
6. Adonis Stevenson – I’m in the camp that thinks Dawson was thinking about yesterday’s lunch rather than the man trying to decapitate him. If Stevenson lasts as a champion it will be due to the lack of good opposition in the division. He wouldn’t have gotten to this position at 168. A weak entry on this list though, as he isn’t incredibly hyped.
7. Adrien Broner – The obligatory Broner entry. I think Broner is a legit champion and will beat the borderline champions and contenders he fights, but he has been sold as a true force in the 147-135 weight classes. I wonder if he might get embarrassed by an opponent of genuine quality.
8. Ricky Burns – I feel a bit harsh putting Ricky on this list. Before the Gonzales fight I had him down as guy that’s happy to sit in his home town and take mandatories (the Frank Warren approach to promotion). The Gonzales fight both showed his technical limitations, but also the ability to read and change the situation that top level sportsmen have. We don’t really know how good Gonzales is, so I don’t think we can write off Burns boxing abilities but even without Broner in the division I’m not sure he is top dog, and he is sold as this by some in the UK.
feel free to add to the list