Friday, 18 July 2014 14:47

This Week in Boxing: July 18, 2014

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This Week in Boxing offers a perspective on the boxing world’s news, events, trials and tribulations, from the week prior.

Canelo escapes
Credit Canelo Alvarez (44-1-1) for continually leaving no challenge behind as he demonstrated, once more, with his acceptance of a risky fight against Erislandy Lara (19-2-2).

The outcome of Saturday’s fight was a debatable split decision that will certainly conjure judging theory discussions of technical boxing skill vs. effective aggression. Alvarez’s wide misses, at points in the contest, were reminiscent of his 2013 bout with Floyd Mayweather Jr, however the Mexican star was able to adjust this time.

When it became apparent that Lara, who possesses superior foot speed, planned to run laps around the ring, Canelo intelligently targeted the body. According to electronically tabulated statistics, Alvarez out-landed his Cuban counterpart 88 – 52 in power punches, very few of which were to the head.

Canelo showed poise and maturity in taking what he was given, rather than being drawn into a style that does not favor his skills.

The Las Vegas card also featured the ring return of former three-division champion, Abner Mares (27-1-1) who showed fortitude, overcoming an early-round cut in order to out-point a game Jonathan Oquendo (24-4).

Porter vs. Brook set

England’s Kell Brook (32-0) has secured a welterweight world title shot against the rugged Shawn Porter (24-0-1). The bout will headline an August 16, Golden Boy promoted card in Carson, California and the latter's IBF belt will be contested.

Porter, an oversized welterweight, has spent the majority of his career at junior middleweight and middleweight. He is coming off impressive back-to-back victories over former titlists Devon Alexander and Paulie Malignaggi. The hard-hitting Brook will be making his first appearance in a world title contest.

Groves returns
George Groves (19-2) will attempt to emerge from his throttling at the hands of Carl Froch, when he re-enters the ring against Christopher Rebrasse (22-2-3) on September 20.

The arc of Groves’ career took a dramatic turn with one right hand from Froch in May. Many believed that the Londoner would capture a share of the super-middleweight title by utilizing superior speed and skill in the much anticipated rematch. Instead, his record shows consecutive, knockout losses. By all that is apparent, Rebrasse, who has a feeble 22 percent knockout rate, represents a bounce-back opportunity for Saint George.

New lows for Arum, Pacquiao
As uninspiring as Manny Pacquiao’s recent meetings with Brandon Rios and Timothy Bradley may have been, these bouts look like blockbusters in comparison to Bob Arum’s latest brainchild. Chris Algieri, who was fortunate enough to be in the ring with Ruslan Provodnikov and in front of two incompetent judges, appears in the lead for a shot at Pacquiao.

Prior to his controversial upset over Provodnikov for a 140-pound belt last month, Algieri had only been in one televised fight and had never been in a bout which was scheduled for 12 rounds.

Excluding Provodnikov, Algieri’s opponents have a collective record of 143-101-18. Does this guy belong on pay-per-view or have Arum and Pacquiao reached desperate times?

On the other side of boxing’s’ Berlin wall, Floyd Mayweather Jr. announced a September 13 rematch with Argentina’s Marcos Maidana, who gave the former a stern test in their May fight. If it’s not exciting, at least it features two legitimate professionals!

Odds and ends

Muhammad Ali’s gloves from the 1971 Fight of The Century against Joe Frazier, will be auctioned on July 31. They last sold at auction for $385,848 USD in 2012.

• Former featherweight world champion Juan Manuel Lopez may have seen his career end with a fourth knockout loss in his last eight fights on Saturday night.

• Floyd Mayweather reportedly paid Marcos Maidana 1.5 million USD, in the days prior to their May fight, in exchange for Maidana wearing gloves supplied by Mayweather. The payment doubled Maidana’s base purse for the fight.

Boxing Schedule

Mike Nashed

I am 35 years old and was born and raised in Boston, Massachusetts.  I studied journalism at Boston University, but eventually graduated with a degree in the sciences.  

Presently, I work in biotechnology and am also an entrepreneur with a business that specializes in sports entertainment.

I particularly enjoy boxing because, of all major sports, it offers the most poignant moments of truth – “the thrill of victory and the agony of defeat.”

I presently write for multiple online publications, including BoxRec News, and am typically in attendance for most major US boxing events and believe that my strongest area of understanding is of the business side of boxing.

Increasingly, in recent years, networks and promoters have directed the sport.  This aspect is sometimes overlooked, however, I believe that one must have a grasp of the various business relationships/rifts in order to truly understand boxing.

Though complicated, it’s a great sport.

I can be reached at Also, follow me on Twitter at @mikenashed.