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Stealing Kevin Iole: Episode 3

Scott Christ is the managing editor of Bad Left Hook and has been covering boxing for SB Nation since 2006.

Kevin_iole_mediumCouple of good ones this week.


Why do you think your group of analysts and experts have Pacquiao at No. 1 even though he has essentially lost to Juan Manuel Marquez twice? Manny hasn’t been himself for two years now, yet he still gets ranked high in the pound-for-pound. Joe Calzaghe is hands down the pound-for-pound champ, with Pavlik in a comfortable second. Who is your top five?

Craig Camara
Fresno, Calif.

My votes were as follows, from first to 10th: Joe Calzaghe, Cotto, Pacquiao, Juan Manuel Marquez, Pavlik, Israel Vazquez, Rafael Marquez, Cristian Mijares, Ivan Calderon and Chad Dawson. I struggled with whom to put No. 1 and I finally went with Calzaghe. But if Cotto wins impressively against Margarito, I may change my mind. I also struggled at No. 10, but opted for Dawson, the WBC light heavyweight champion, over WBO super flyweight champ Fernando Montiel.

That's right. Yahoo! Sports super expert on boxing and mixed martial arts Kevin Iole thinks that Chad Dawson is the tenth-best pound-for-pound fighter in the game.

Chad Dawson. The very same Chad Dawson that didn't look too good against Glen Johnson, and that's not like saying, "Well Calzaghe didn't look too good against Bernard Hopkins." No one looks good against Hopkins. Glen Johnson came and fought. He didn't fight some perplexing, defense-first style. He fought the Glen Johnson style. He came forward and hurt Dawson many times. Dawson gassed against a much older man. You can make a superb argument that Dawson lost the fight. And this coming off of wins over Epifanio Mendoza and Jesus Ruiz.

Really? Chad Dawson?


Is it only me who finds the idea of a De La Hoya-Pacquiao match shameless? It would be just another money scheme fight in a long line of big-money fights that do nothing for true boxing fans. Pacquiao is naturally 20 pounds lighter than De La Hoya. Style-wise, anyone who knows boxing knows Manny would have no chance. If Oscar were truly in it to prove anything, he would fight the winner of Cotto/Margarito.

Danny L.

No matter what those who are pushing this bout want to say, it’s ridiculous. Manny started as a flyweight and was knocked out in that class. Oscar once held a share of the middleweight title. If Oscar signs to fight Pacquiao, it will be, plain and simply, a money grab. There is nothing competitive or intriguing about this bout.

1. Manny Pacquiao did not start as a flyweight (112). He started as a freaking strawweight. The argument could've been even stronger.

2. "He was knocked out in that class" -- so what? Even if you think that this is a valid point, can we all agree that the Manny Pacquiao that fights here in the land of the present in the year of 2008 is not exactly the same guy that fought Medgoen Singsurat in 1999? Or, his other KO loss, the guy that lost his 12th pro fight to Rustico Torrecamp in 1996?

3. "Oscar once held a share of the middleweight title" -- so what? He was gifted a win over Felix Sturm, then immediately got his ass kicked by Bernard Hopkins at a catchweight of 155 pounds. Also, for the record, I hate when people go, "Well, Oscar was competitive. He was ahead on one of the scorecards!" He shouldn't have been. Keith MacDonald (who had it 77-75 Oscar at the time of stoppage) was wearing Oscar-tinted glasses.

4. "it will be, plain and simply, a money grab" -- so what? Every Oscar fight is, plain and simply, a money grab, and has been for years. Do you think he chose Ricardo Mayorga because Mayorga was going to be great competition for him? He chose Mayorga because it was a guy that he could knock out, and a guy that would help him sell the fight, and a guy that was perfect comebacking material after Hopkins dropped him like a rotten egg.

And I hate to say it (well, no I don't), but Iole thinks the only real fight for Oscar is Miguel Cotto, should Cotto get past Margarito. There isn't anything competitive about Oscar-Cotto, either.


The only thing Oscar needs to figure out is to just go away. He’s passed his prime.

Hartford, Conn.

Oscar remains a quality fighter, but he’s nowhere near as good as his fans think. But if he wants to keep fighting, I have no problem with it, because his bouts are good for boxing because of all the attention they bring the sport.

Just so long as he doesn't fight the most popular boxer on the face of the planet.


Look at the gap between cruiserweight and light heavyweight, where there is a 25-pound differential. I propose that the cruiserweight division should split at 187. This will allow for a 12-pound differential and the inception of a junior cruiserweight division.

Earlie McCrary
Victorville, Calif.

The cruiserweight limit used to be 190 and was only recently moved to 200 pounds. I think it’s better at 200. If you go to 187, guys who weigh say, 192, are heavyweights. Is it a fair fight to pit a 192-pound heavyweight against someone like 250-pound Wladimir Klitschko? As for creating a new division, forget it. There are too many divisions as it is.

Ummm, here's a case where Mr. Iole, plain and simply, fails to read a question.

The reader proposes that light heavyweight stay at 175, junior cruiserweight is established with a cap of 187, and cruiserweight stays at a cap of 200 pounds. Iole thinks -- inexplicably -- that the reader says to lower the cruiserweight limit to 187 pounds, which would make his 192-pounders heavyweights. This is not at all what the pride of Victorville, Calif., says. He's saying that the difference between light heavyweight and cruiserweight is too damn big, which it really is.

As for creating a new division, why the hell not? There are too many divisions at is it, sure, but they're not going anywhere, and if you're going to have cutoffs at 105, 108, 112, 115, 118, 122, 126, 130, 135, 140, 147, 154, 160, 168 and 175, why does the next class go up 25 POUNDS?

It's a legitimate question. One that just completely flew over dude's head. Nearly as hilariously off as when he wrote an entire article about MMAer Thiago Alves' family history in banking. Alves' family, for the record, is in...baking. Baking.

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