It looks like Chris Byrd is in negotiations to face O'Neill Bell for the undisputed cruiserweight title. This is a huge fight in my eyes because it could bring a little more attention to the badly overlooked cruiserweight division. The division has had some really good fights in the last couple years (Vadim Tokarev vs. Felix Cora Jr. jumps to mind as a recent example).
This is a brilliant move for Byrd as he isn't quite as fast as he once was and doesn't seem to be as slick either so moving to a lower weight division where he won't have to take the punishment of those big heavyweight punches can only do him good. Besides, he is a natural cruiserweight who walks around at about 200 lbs. He is claiming that he is going to move back to heavyweight after the fight, but we'll see how he feels about that when the time comes.
Bell has been talking about this fight a lot in recent weeks, especially a few weeks back on FNF. I think he is smart enough to realize that in this weight class you're lucky if you get a money fight, so he'd be crazy not to go for it.
Less than 700 tickets have been sold for Roy Jones Jr. vs. Prince Badi Ajamu. The Qwest Center (located in Boise, ID) holds about 6,000 people so with the fight a little less than three weeks away those sales are dreadfully low.
Two main factors seem to be playing into this...
- Roy is doing his same ol' song and dance with not being around to do publicity for the fight, and also not being in Idaho at all for promotion.
- Tickets are $200 and over which is a lot to ask for a fading legend fighting a relative unknown.
Paul Williams (30-0 22KO), the Welterweight who looked great in stopping Walter Mattysse in May is going to be headlining the August 19th Boxing After Dark card. His opponent will be Sharba Mitchell (57-5 30KO). I am a fan of Mitchell but he is far past his prime and Williams has dynamite hands. At 6 foot 1 inch his promoters are having a lot of trouble finding welterweights willing to face the challenge.
This is another example of Mitchell being a little bit more of a competitor than is probably good for him. But if he does pull off the win there will be no one happier than me (well...except for Sharmba I suppose). Regardless of the outcome it should be a pretty interesting event.
DeMarcus "Chop Chop" Corley will be facing Junior Whitter in a September fight in London. This will be a title fight for the Junior Welterweight title vacated by Floyd Mayweather Jr. when he moved up a weight class.
I had a bit of spare time today so I compiled the first ever Bad Left Hook Pound for Pound ratings. This was using the data gathered from the earlier P4P Rankings thread. A first place vote was worth 10 points, a 10th place vote worth 1...and so on.
1. Floyd Mayweather Jr. (39 pts)
2 (tie). Winky Wright (35 pts)
2 (tie). Manny Pacquiao (35 pts)
4. Bernard Hopkins (25 pts)
5 (tie). Marco Antonio Barrera (23 pts)
5 (tie). Jermain Taylor (23 pts)
7. Joe Calzaghe (16 pts)
8. Rafael Marquez (8 pts)
9. Ricky Hatton (5 pts)
10. Jose Luis Castillo (4 pts)