Kobe Bryant weighs in on possible fight between Mayweather and Pacquiao

Kobe Bryant

Kobe Bryant is a huge boxing fan/Photo courtesy of Los Angeles Lakers, NBA.com


We caught up to Kobe Bryant after his team was defeated by the Miami Heat 78-75 on Tuesday night at Staples Center. Bryant is an avid boxing fan and has visited the Wild Card gym in Hollywood to watch Manny Pacquiao train.

We asked Bryant his thoughts on what might happen should a fight between Pacquiao and Floyd Mayweather Jr. come to fruition. Bryant did not make a prediction, but he did have two interesting thoughts.

First, he said, “Manny Pacquiao is going to have to make some adjustments.”

Bryant also gave Mayweather quite a compliment.

“Floyd Mayweather is a boxing genius,” Bryant said.



Twitter Facebook Pinterest Reddit Tumblr Email Snailmail

What will settlement with Richard Schaefer mean for Golden Boy Promotions?

Oscar De La Hoya/Photo by Associated Press


Now that Golden Boy Promotions and former CEO Richard Schaefer have reached a settlement, it will be interesting to see how Golden Boy and president Oscar De La Hoya react.

We say that because as part of the settlement, De La Hoya agreed to sever ties with several Al Haymon fighters who were being promoted by Golden Boy, but were not under promotional contract to De La Hoya’s company. Among them – according to several publications – reportedly are Danny Garcia, Keith Thurman, Marcos Maidana and heavyweight contender Deontay Wilder. According to ESPN.com, Wilder’s challenge to heavyweight champion Bermane Stiverne on Saturday figures to be Wilder’s last under the Golden Boy banner.

According to reports, Schaefer will still have to sit out an unspecified amount of time before he can promote again because he was under contract to Golden Boy through 2018. A source told ESPN.com it could be one to two years.

Schaefer had resigned in June after a long run as the company CEO. He was eventually taken to arbitration by De La Hoya for $50 million. There was no exact word on the monetary part of the settlement, but ESPN.com reported that Schaefer may have to give up his roughly eight percent stock in Golden Boy, which apparently also will receive millions of dollars.

Indeed, how Golden Boy marches on from here will be interesting to see. De La Hoya is supposedly cool with the settlement, so that’s good. But several of the solid fighters he’s been using to add punch to his cards, are gone.

Time will tell.


Twitter Facebook Pinterest Reddit Tumblr Email Snailmail

Report: Mike Alvarado arrested in Denver on warrant, gun possession

Mike Alvarado/Photo courtesy of Top Rank Inc.


Welterweight Mike Alvarado of Denver this past Saturday was arrested in downtown Denver on a felony warrant and for being a convicted felon in possession of a handgun, the Denver Post reported.

Alvarado (34-3, 23 KOs) is scheduled to fight Brandon Rios (32-2-1, 23 KOs) of Oxnard for the third time Jan. 24 at 1stBank Center in Bloomfield, Colo. (on HBO). The fighters split the first two bouts.

Alvarado, 34, has already served two stints in prison, according to the report. He has been bailed out and at this time he should be able to keep the date with Rios.

Twitter Facebook Pinterest Reddit Tumblr Email Snailmail

Manny Pacquiao selected as a judge for 63rd Miss Universe Pageant

Manny Pacquiao

Manny Pacquiao/Photo courtesy of Top Rank Inc.


Guess what Manny Pacquiao will be doing while awaiting word of his next opponent? Judging the 63rd Miss Universe Pageant, of course. The pageant will take place Jan. 25 and be televised on NBC.

Pacquiao was among the first group of judges selected. The others are Kristin Cavallari (TV host), actor William Levy, Lisa Vanderpump (The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills) and Louise Roe (fashion journalist)

Pacquiao (57-5-2, 38 KOs) most recently defended his welterweight world title with a wide decision over Chris Algieri on Nov. 23 in Macau, China.

Twitter Facebook Pinterest Reddit Tumblr Email Snailmail

Gilberto ‘Zurdo’ Ramirez will make HBO debut undernearth Rios-Alvarado III

Gilberto Ramirez/Photo courtesy of Top Rank Inc.


Gilberto “Zurdo” Ramirez, ranked as high as No. 2 in the super middleweight division, will make his HBO debut on Jan. 24 when he takes on Maxim Vlasov of Russia underneath the third fight between welterweights Mike Alvarado and Brandon Rios at 1stBank Center in Bloomfield, Colo.

Ramirez, just 23, is a 6-foot-2 1/2-inch southpaw from Mexico. He is 30-0 with 24 knockouts and has stopped his past four opponents inside the distance.

The card will be staged by Bob Arum’s Top Rank Inc.

“I really appreciate Bob Arum, HBO and my team at Zapari Boxing  for giving me this opportunity,” Ramirez said. ” I have been waiting so long for this caliber of fight. Vlasov is the biggest test of my career.  A victory over him will validate me as a worthy challenger for a world title.  I promise to give the fans a very exciting fight on Jan. 24.”

Vlasov, 28, is 30-1 with 15 knockouts. He, too, is tall at 6-3 1/2.

 “I box to live and I live to box,” Vlasov said from his Russia-based training camp.  “I want this victory very badly. This is my time and I am ready to prove it.”

Vlasov is ranked as high as No. 6 in the world.


Twitter Facebook Pinterest Reddit Tumblr Email Snailmail

Gennady Golovkin is Los Angeles Newspaper Group Fighter of the Year

Gennady Golovkin

Gennady Golovkin/Photo by Associated Press


Any time you’re picking a Fighter of the Year, you’d love it to be a no-brainer because there is no second-guessing. It was not that way in 2014, where there was no real obvious winner.
Some of those strongly considered here included flyweight champion Roman “Chocolatito” Gonzalez, light heavyweight champion Sergey Kovalev and lightweight champion Terence Crawford. Among others given thought but perhaps not real strong consideration included welterweight champion Floyd Mayweather Jr. and two-division champion Naoya Inoue of Japan.

It wasn’t any of them. It was middleweight champion Gennady Golovkin, who is trained by West Covina native Abel Sanchez out of Big Bear.

Golovkin, of Kazakhstan, went 3-0 in 2014 – all three fights ending with Golovkin stopping his opponent inside the distance. Golovkin scored a seventh-round TKO over Osumanu Adama on Feb. 1, a very impressive third-round TKO over former champion Daniel Geale in July and a first-round knockout of interim champion Marco Antonio Rubio in October at StubHub Center in Carson.

Remember how Mike Tyson used to have opponents quaking in their shoes ahead of fights? Golovkin is beginning to take on a similar persona that is not yet to that extreme, but seemingly moving toward that.

The only loss by Rubio in the past five years had been to Julio Cesar Chavez Jr., and Rubio went the 12-round distance with Chavez. Also keep in mind that Geale was 5-0 in world-title fights until losing his title to Darren Barker via split-decision in August 2013, so he was no slouch. Golovkin made him look like one, though.

Every time we think of Golovkin, it brings us back to an email Sanchez sent yours truly when he first started training Golovkin in 2010. Sanchez, not the type to go overboard in his assessment of his fighters, said Golovkin was a can’t-miss superstar on the horizon. Sanchez was right.

Let’s not forget, Golovkin won his second and third fights of the year – over Geale and Rubio – after his father died suddenly of a heart attack on Feb. 18 at the age of 68. For a fighter to have to pull himself together after that kind of tragedy has got to be the hardest thing.
Golovkin, 32, is 31-0 with 28 knockouts. That’s a knockout ratio of 90.3 percent.

Touching on a few of the others who did not get the nod here but had very good years, very impressive was what Gonzalez accomplished. He went 4-0 with all four victories by TKO. He won the flyweight world title with his third win of the year – a ninth-round TKO over Akira Yaegashi – and then defended that belt with a sixth-round TKO over Rocky Fuentes.
Interestingly, three of Gonzalez’s four fights were in Japan. Gonzalez, 27, is from Nicaragua.

Also substantial was what Kovalev did. He went 3-0 with two knockouts. He defended his title against Cedric Agnew (KO 7) and Blake Caparello (TKO 2) and won a very wide unanimous decision over ageless wonder Bernard Hopkins in a light heavyweight title-unification bout.
We also really liked what Crawford did in 2014. He ventured to Scotland to win the title with a unanimous decision over Ricky Burns, then defended it twice in his hometown of Omaha, Neb. First, he stopped Yuriorkis Gamboa in the ninth round, then he won a unanimous decision over Raymundo Beltran.

Good stuff by all of these fighters. They are to be commended.

(Trainer of the Year)
The aforementioned Sanchez is our Trainer of the Year. The reason whys are quite simple. Keeping in mind that we like what several other trainers did, Sanchez was charged with helping keep a heartbroken Golovkin in the proper frame of mind once he began training again after some personal time to heal.

And Sanchez was just the trainer to do that. Sanchez, who trained former junior middleweight champion “Terrible” Terry Norris, is that cool personality that fits perfectly with a caring and sensitive yet absolutely vicious fighter like Golovkin.

Also, Sanchez encourages Golovkin to be the most destructive fighter he can possible be; he knows that’s what the fans crave.

Twitter Facebook Pinterest Reddit Tumblr Email Snailmail