THE PINOY ON PACQUIAO & SO MANY PPV CARDS: JASON ANIEL

PACQUIAO MAKES COMEBACK FIGHT

Three-time world champion MannyrnPacquiao will attempt to get back into the win column September 10 when hernfaces unheralded Mexican Hector Velazquez, underneath the ErikrnMorales-Zahir Raheem co-main event. Recently Top Rank held a pressrnconference in Glendale, CA to announce the second half of the DoublernTrouble mega-show. The 39-3 Pacquiao, a native of General Santos City inrnthe Philippines is training right now in Los Angeles.,

MORALES & MANNY MUST WIN FORrnREMATCH!

Two week earlier, Erik Morales held is own press conference to announce hisrnfight with 1996 Olympian Zahir Raheem. Also featured on the show isrnFilipino-American Brian Viloria, who attempts to win his first worldrntitle against champion Eric Ortiz. The hottest Filipino prospect ReyrnBoom Boom Bautista will too be featured on the card. Top Rankboss Bob Arum has truly made this mega-show at the Staples Centerin Los Angeles Double Trouble, featuring the best Filipino fightersrnin the world against tough Mexican fighters. Expect this card to sell out easy.rnAlthough Golden Boys September show, headlining Marco AntoniornBarreras 130 lb. unification fight with Robbie Peden has thernbigger single fight, the Double Trouble card is in my mind betterrnthan the September 17th HBO PPV fight.

PACMAN TRYING TO BREAK TOP RANK JINX

Before Pacquiaos heartbreaking March loss to Erik Morales, I mentionedrnthat Pacquiao (along with ex-champ Luisito Espinosa) hasnt won a majorrnfight on a Top Rank show. The Morales loss is now added to Pacquiaosrndraws with Juan Manuel Marquez and Agapito Sanchez. Boxing fansrnshouldnt forget Espinosas losses to Top Rank fighters GutyrnEspadas and Cesar Soto. Hector Velazquez, who is managed byrnMorales manager Fernando Beltran, he will try to continue the ToprnRank-Filipino nightmare on September 10.

DO YOU HAVE F.U MONEY?

Starting in September, Showtime and (mostly) HBO will feature arnPPV every month until January. In September, it will be Barrera and Peden,rnfighting of the WBC/IBF world championships. Also on that card will be ShanernMosleys next step back to an elite status. In October, both Showtime andrnHBO will have back to back PPVs, featuring Roy Jones Jr.-Antonio Tarverand Jose Luis Castillo-Diego Corrales. Floyd Mayweather Jr. has beenrnguaranteed a November PPV date, and the middleweight rematch between BernardrnHopkins and Jermain Taylor will happen in December. Finally, shouldrnPacquiao and Morales win their respective bouts in September; they will tanglernagain in January. Donald Trump would have to pay $300, plus taxes, overrnfive months to enjoy some the biggest fights of the year.  rnNow most people are not as fortunate to have the expendable F.U (dubbedrnby KNBR radio talk show host Gary Radnich) income like Trump, sornitll be wise to spend your hard earned money right!

Jason Aniel

 

Contact the writer Sportnjordan@gmail.com

SHAW HITS JACKPOT, PACQUIAO GETS BACKING

Three weeks prior to former three-time world champion MannyrnPacquiao attempting to get back into the win column against HectorrnVelazquez, promoter Gary Shaw has announced that Pacquiao will nowrnbe performing exclusively for Gary Shaw Productions,

SHAW HITS JACKPOT,rnPACQUIAO GETS BACKING

Three weeks prior to former three-time world champion MannyrnPacquiao attempting to get back into the win column against HectorrnVelazquez, promoter Gary Shaw has announced that Pacquiao will nowrnbe performing exclusively for Gary Shaw Productions. Shaw said, I havernsigned a platinum chip world class champion whose persona transcends sportsrnand approaches folk lore in the Philippines. Shaw adds Pacquiao to a list ofrncelebrated fighters that include World lightweight champion Diego Corralesand IBF 168 lb. titleholder Jeff Lacy.

MANNY GETS NEEDEDrnPROTECTION

The 39-3, (31 KOs) Pacquiao has already been guaranteedrnrevenge against Erik Morales, who defeated him last March in a thrillingrn12 round bout. But, in order to get to that juncture, Pacquiao must defeat thernwell-traveled Mexican Velazquez, who can fight a little (42-10-2, 31 KOs). InrnShaw, Pacquiao adds an experienced promoter who will watch his back against ToprnRanks Morales (48-2, 34 KOs). Promoter Bob Arum isnt afraid tornproclaim Morales as one of (if not) his most prized fighters. In the future,rnexpect Pacquiao is be featured in his own shows, in order to maximizernPacquiaos star power.

AN EMOTIONAL PROMOTERrnDURING ANY FIGHT

Gary Shaw is always on his feet whenever his fighter isrndoing well. During Diego Corrales thrilling comeback win, Shaw, who was seatedrnin Corrales corner, looked like an emotional wreck, as if it were him who wasrnfighting those hard rounds. Unlike Bob Arum or Don King, who hardly show anyrnemotion during big fights, Shaw embraced Corrales in the ring.

MANNY A PROVEN PPV COMMODITY>

Pacquiaos PPV battle with Morales is currently the secondrnhighest bought show this year (second to Winky Wrights dominant win againstrnFelix Trinidad). As well as being the richest, most popular celebrity in thernPhilippines, Pacquiao has built a huge fan following on the west coast and is arnhousehold name amongst Filipino-Americans.

CAN MANNY Although, Pacquiao hasnt proven hisrnmarketability in the states on his own (his last promoter never gave him arnchance), fights in the San Francisco Bay Area would certainly sell. Also, arnfuture fight (rematch) with recognized World 130 lb. champion Marco AntoniornBarrera, this would be off the hook!

NEW SITE, POST HACKING WILL TAKE TIME>

As you can see, www.RingTalk.comhas undergone the first real significant changes since we were hackedrnthree-months ago. We thank you for your patience, and hope you enjoy the newrnformat! In three weeks, we hope to be have the entire site on track. Laterrntoday, Cliff 24-Karat Rold will rock the house. And yes, PedrornFernandez will be getting off his lazy (see California summer) ass andrnputting this site back together. He has a column on deck for laternWednesday.  

Jason Aniel>

Contact the writer Sportnjordan@gmail.com

THE BOXING FAN SPEAKS OUT IN YOUR EMAIL: PEDRO FERNANDEZ

Subject: Juarez Trouncing

I have to say I dont think weight had anything to do withrnRocky Juarez loss to Humberto Soto. He was simply out foughtrnplain and simple. Maybe the height had a part in it. But I have been sayingrnever since I seen him with his so-called step up in comp, it was with older notrnin there prime fighters. When he runs into somebody who can take his hook andrnhas some good boxing skills then Juarez will get beat. That is exactly whatrnhappened. He ran into someone who has been sparring with Erik Moraleswho from what I have seen has learned plenty from Morales. But once again ifrnJuarez fights another boxer with a good chin he will be beat. That is why hernnever gave Zahir Raheem a rematch.

, Subject: Can You Help Me Find Mike Tyson?>

Dear Pedro:

 

Hoping you can help me locate Mike Tyson.   I am a NY businessman trying to make somernboxing arrangements with at this time an (undisclosed) opponent.   We are putting a totally different spin onrnMikes career that will keep him away from pornography.  

Thank you in advance for your time and consideration.

 

Best Regards,

G. Hollander

Dear Mr. Hollander,

I happen to think Porn is the ideal outlet for Mike Tysonvocationally. Mike once told me that, I cant believe people pay money to seernhim fight. I do it naturally. Well, need I say anymore? Tyson needs Porn andrnPorn needs Tyson! And Mr. Hollander, all due respect sir, but I think Mike hasrna better shot in X-rated films, and at the same time be safer then he wouldrnbe fighting in a boxing ring nowadays! Thanks, Pedro

Subject:   AudleyrnFan Has His 15 Minutes (62 Words)

Pedro,

I recently emailed you regarding my opinions of the toprnheavyweights. Audley Harrison is the heir apparent. He is just inrnanother league from the other guys. Audley cannot only box, but he hasrndevastating power as well. I would love to see him fight Samuel Peter.rnWho would you pick? And do think Harrison can beat Vitali Klitschko?

Regards,

Mike

Hey Mike, Audley needs to step his game up period! VitalirnKlitschko? Last I checked he hasnt fought in ions. Pedro

Subject: Mercer-Briggs Odds?

Hey Pedro, I cannot find odds on Ray Mercer-ShannonrnBriggs. Do you know the line? I think this is a paycheck fight for Mercerrnand Briggs knows he has to win for one more shot at a payday. What do yournthink?

Dear Sir, you probably have this match pegged right on. Butrnbetting money on either of these guys is perilous to say the least.   You arent buying this are you? Thanks,rnPedro

Subject: Ring Talk Radio & Andre Ward

Pedro, I discovered your Ring Talk radio show a fewrnmonths ago.   Its excellent!  

Thanks for opening my eyes to Andre Ward.   I wouldnt have known how good he

is without you touting him.  rnAnyway, the fight last t night was super impressive regardless of who hernwas fighting, Ward oozes class and talent and it makes me proud hes from thernBay.   Theres no question in my mindrnthat with a little more experience and strength hes a nightmare for JermainrnTaylor. I wish there was future betting on World Championships inrnboxing.   I would lay a chunk onrnWard.   Keep up the good work.

Matt Paige

San Rafael, CA

Subject: Luisito Espinosa

Pedro,

 

Thanks for the www.RingTalk.comtee shirt, I appreciate it man. So did the California Commission suspendrnLuisito Espinosa?   I also thoughtrnLuisito had no business in the ring tonight. Think promoter Dan Goossenwill come back?

 

Mike

Dear Mike,

The Commission wanted him to take an MRI, thisrnI was told, and he refused. Look, Luisito looks like hes 105 years old! Havingrnbeen knocked the puck out in four of his last six fights, well that should inrnitself be convincing enough to prevent anyone from letting him fight again. BigrnBird (Dan Goossen) should bring Andre Ward to Oakland, CA,rnand the Henry Kaiser Convention Center in particular for a Saturdayrnafternoon fight card! People dont like going to the old Oakland Auditoriumat night. Thanks!

Subject: Mistakes On San Francisco Pugs!

Pedro,

I enjoyed your ruminations re:   San Francisco pugilists. A couple of corrections:1) That was FreddiernSteele (not Frankie) who handed Fred Apostoli his first loss. 2)rnApostoli won the middleweight title by beating Marcel Thil.     His victory over Young Corbett III was in arntitle defense. And in naming Friscos greatest ringmen–did you really overlookrnJAMES J. CORBETT??     Or was thatrnjust a “tease,” to get a rise out of a boxing buff like me?

Bill ONeill

Retired boxing writer

Former President, WBHF

Riverside, CA

Dear Bill,

I simply forgot about the man that beat John L. Sullivan.rnAs a pro, Corbett was reportedly 13-4-4, with 6 KOs. Turning pro in 1886, SanrnFranciscos Gentleman Jim KOd John L. Sullivan in 1892. Losing therntitle to James Jeffries in 1900, this was an upset as Corbett was cruisingrnuntil the 23rd round when he got drilled by Jeffries, who had takenrna beating! One fight followed three months later with Charles Kid McCoy(who threw the fight). In 1903, Jeffries beat Corbett in a rematch withoutrnmercy for ten heats before the fight was called! Corbett retired and would diernat 66 in 1933.

 

Subject: Luisito Espinosa

I can only cringe and shake my head. Luisito Espinosa is onernof my all time favorite fighters. He came back from the embarrassing loss ofrnhis bantamweight title by knockout to Israel Contreras in front ofrnthousands of Filipinos in Araneta Coliseum to win the featherweight belt from ManuelrnMedina. His memorable title defense against Mexicos Alejandrorn”Cobrita” Gonzalez, in Guadalajara, Mexico, a man who previouslyrnKOd him, will be forever etched in my memory.

Unfortunately, he is not even a shadow of his old self.rnLuisito was screwed by promoters in our country, and a large purse was neverrngiven to him. Now, boxing vultures are circling him. Forget for a second therndanger of permanent neurological damage. His plight is a stain on thernPhilippine sports conscience, who has time and again ignored athletes whornbrought honor to our country after they are washed up.

R. Bonsubre

Dear Mr. Bonsure,

I stand corrected as I was under the impression that thernPhilippine Government had guaranteed Luisitos monies. I have gotten severalrnemails to the contrary. Still, somebody should be held responsible! As for Mrs.rnLuisito Espinosa, what a beeach!

Subject: Why Is Taylor Getting Heat?

Pedro,

The reason Jermain Taylor is getting so much crap isrnit was the lamest title winning effort in recent memory.   Watch the fight without the HBOshills commentarythe fight wasnt really that close.  

Respectfully.

Terry Schuller

Subject: Cartoonist Comments On Tyson-Jameson X-Rated PPV

Pedro,

That would make and all time great cartoon. I would tune inrnto see if Mike Tyson bites Jenna Jamesons nipples off!

Gabe McIntosh

THE NEW WWW.RINGTALK.COMIS HEREALMOST!

Having getting hacked, and then ripped off by a webrntechnician, www.RingTalk.com is aboutrntwo weeks away from being 100%. Thanks for the patronage and your patience!

Pedro Fernandez

Contact the writer Pedro@RingTalk.com

24 KARAT ROLD ON POLITICS, MONEY, & POWER: CLIFF ROLD

Hall of Famernslugger ReggiernJackson was oncernreferred to in baseball as the straw the stirs the drink.   In the game of boxing, that role has beenrnfilled for the last decade by none other than Oscar The Golden Boy DernLa Hoya.   These past two weekends, recognized stars and formerrntitlists Ricardo Mayorgaand Fernando Vargasshowed off their junior middleweight wares. And with the displays came arnmini-controversy over which of them should be fighting for the WBC title at 154 lbs.  rnMayorga got the strap when he beat Michelle Piccirillo. Vargas has since sued the sanctioning body, andrnthen decisioned Javier Castillejo; thus it would be logical to think the two wouldrnface each other.   Leave it to The Golden Boy to change the equation.

Hall of Famernslugger ReggiernJackson was oncernreferred to in baseball as the straw the stirs the drink.   In the game of boxing, that role has been filledrnfor the last decade by none other than Oscar The Golden Boy De LarnHoya.   These past two weekends, recognized stars and formerrntitlists Ricardo Mayorgaand Fernando Vargasshowed off their junior middleweight wares. And with the displays came a mini-controversyrnover which of them should be fighting for the WBC title at 154 lbs.  rnMayorga got the strap when he beat Michelle Piccirillo. Vargas has since sued the sanctioning body, andrnthen decisioned Javier Castillejo; thus it would be logical to think the two wouldrnface each other.   Leave it to The Golden Boy to change the equation.

SIMPLY PUT, OSCAR DECIDES WHO GETS PAID!

As has beenrnreported elsewhere, Oscar is pondering a rematch with Vargas, or a showdownrnwith Mayorga for May 2006 on the way to a possible brawl with World 154-lb. champion Winky Wright next September.   Vargass camprnmade clear last week that they want that spot.  rnMayorga is likely telling promoter Don King the same.  rnRather than a fresh showdown between brawlers, we get the latest stagernin a saga of who and when Oscar will fight again.   Folks, when the straw stirs the drink even top fighters whornseem to be stars are in reality just ingredients in the most expensive drink ofrnall.   Lets call it a Long Island Iced Paycheck, because fighting De La Hoya makes a fighter morerndrunk with riches than possibly any other bout.

IDEA OF PRIZEFIGHTING AGAIN AT THE FORE!

As noted here lastrnweek, when fighters put their health and pride on the line, they are lookingrnfor money first, and titles second.  rnThey are prizefighters, and the primary prize of course is cold hardrncash. Boxings internal logic thusrnmakes Mayorga and Vargas, the two current top draws at 154 while Oscar awaitsrnthe birth of a child, a most illogical matchup.   In a world without Oscar, the money would be inrnVargas-Mayorga. In a world with him,rnfour big money fights emerge in a fistic version of college basketballs Final Four.

KINGS COURT COULD BE SPECIAL TREAT!

Without a dancernpartner in the foreseeable future, Winky Wrights working relationship with Don King makes the obvious choices for future endeavors alsornthe most profitable.   Wright andrnKing-promoted Mayorga is the easiest fight for those two warriors to make.   Wright and Oscar go into those fights asrnfavorites and likely emerge as THE superfight of 2006.   Respectable showings from Vargas and Mayorgarnwould leave each with each other as a still potent payday even after thernfact.  

OSCAR ANNOYS SOME WHO DONT GET IT!

While some fans getrnfrustrated with the way Oscar seems able to pick and choose the fates of otherrnfighters, the fact is that Oscars choices have been best for the sport inrnrecent years.His decision to fight,rnwin or lose, nearly every top talent from 140 to 160 has meant that the gamerncould grow.  Fighters like ShanernMosley and FelixrnTrinidad, the pair became bigger stars because Oscar chose to fightrnthem. I once heard Hasim Rahman say herncould never hate Lennox Lewis because their fights bought his house.   Oscar has bought a lot of homes inrnhis time.   The path he chooses in thernnext few months will surely close escrow on a few more. And if we get four bigrnfights where it seemed there were maybe only two, then we get the bestrncocktails we could ask for.

24-KARAT NOTEBOOK

WBA 108 lb. titlist Roberto Vasquez picked up his secondrnconsecutive impressive win in beating former 105 lb. titlist Jose Aguirre.   All the munchkins in Oz   celebrated most gratefully and Dorothy ponderedrnwhether Vasquez is on a collision course with US Olympian Brain ViloriaRayrnMercer gets a crack at former World heavyweight champion Shannon Briggs thisrnSaturday in a battle between guys who have been washed up so long that theyrnalready failed to catch on in K-1!   Ifrnyou spend money on this card and I laugh at you, dont take it personalRoyrnJones Sr. is coming back to train Roy Jones Jr. for his rubber match withrnHBO/Ring Magazine light heavyweight champ Antonio Tarver.   It adds a cool element to the story butrnpeople are forgetting that the best win he ever had with Daddy in his cornerrnwas Jorge Vaca.   In other words, Seniorrnnever proved he could play the game at the very top.

Cliff Rold

Note: 24-Karat Rold is not just the best young boxing writer on the planet. He isrnalso an award winning poet and graduate student in US Foreign Policy at thernAmerican University in Washington DC. He can be reached with your comments at 24KaratRold@Comcast.net

SOTO UPSETS JUAREZ, VARGAS WINS STINKER!

HBOS BOXING AFTER DARK RETURNS TO “ROOTS!”

Chicago, IL-The opening bout of the HBO Boxing After Dark cardrnwas a featherweight go between heavily favored Rocky Juarezand Humberto Soto. In the pre-fight piece, I gave Soto twornpossible advantages. One being the three-inch height advantage the Tijuanarnresident possessed. The second had to do with Juarez “dieing” at thernweight. As it turns out, those two intangibles would propel Soto for the betterrnpart of 12 rounds Saturday night and his winning a unanimous decision over thernpreviously unbeaten Juarez,a Houston, TX native., HBOS BOXING AFTER DARK RETURNS TO “ROOTS!”

Chicago, IL-The opening bout of the HBO Boxing After Dark cardrnwas a featherweight go between heavily favored Rocky Juarezand Humberto Soto. In the pre-fight piece, I gave Soto twornpossible advantages. One being the three-inch height advantage the Tijuanarnresident possessed. The second had to do with Juarez “dieing” at thernweight. As it turns out, those two intangibles would propel Soto for the betterrnpart of 12 rounds Saturday night and his winning a unanimous decision over thernpreviously unbeaten Juarez,a Houston, TX native.

SOTO WAS JABBING, JUAREZ WAS COVERING!

From the start, the 58 Mexican “fought tall.” This was vital,rnbecause sooner or later, and hopefully for Humberto it would be later, Juarezrnwas going to strike hard with power shots. As it turns out, it was a lot later.rnGiving Soto, 126 lbs., the first four rounds with ease, the fifth was a bitrncloser. Because Humberto is not a Mike Tyson like puncher, Juarez, 126, didnt fall in 36 minutes. But from the first minute, the punches Juarez was eating,rnthey were bothering him.

TWO ADVANTAGES THAT PLAYED A ROLE!

In the pre-fight piece, I gave Soto two possible advantages. One being thernthree-inch height advantage the Tijuana possessed. The second had to do withrnJuarez “dieing” at the weight. As it turns out, those two intangiblesrnwould propel Soto for the better part of 12 rounds Saturday night, with hisrnwinning a unanimous decision over the previously unbeaten Rocky Juarez.

HUMBERTO MAKES HIS “REAL” MARK IN SECOND!

With 22 seconds left in the second heat, Soto launched a right uppercut and left hook, that when combined obviously shook Juarez a littlernbit. And while Rocky landed a number of left hooks primarily, he didnt hurtrnSoto, who owned him up to the seventh round. It was at that point it appearedrnSoto had shot his load. Hurt by left hooks, and occasional right hands, Sotornwas in trouble.

THIS WAS ROCKYS LAST REAL STAND!

And when he came out for the eighth, Soto seemed to bernwalking in thick mud with ankle weights. But Juarez, the 2000rnOlympic Silver Medallist could not cash in hisrnchips. Instead, Soto “stalled” until he caught his second wind andrnwon the round in that mode. In the next heat, seemingly with Soto on cruiserncontrol, referee Tim Adams took arnpoint away from Soto for punching behind the head (both men had been warned forrnrabbit punching).

LEDERMAN AND I GO CONTRARY TO THE OFFICIALS!

Come the tenth round, Soto was trying to get by. Wellrnaware of the fact he was clearly out performing the betting favorite Juarez,rnSenor Soto was looking for the finish line. But after another point deductionrnfor the same infraction in the tenth from referee Adams, Soto just kept his cool.rnJuarez would win the 11th, but lose the 12th. And at the end of 36 spiritedrnminutes of battle, I had Soto in front 115-111. The judges, they differed with HBOsrnHarold Lederman and I. JohnrnMcCarthy had it 114-113, KenrnMorita 114-112, and Tommy Kaczmarek made it unanimous for Soto with a 114-113 score.

MEXCIAN LUCKY HE WASNT ROBBED!

Anybody who had Juarez close to Soto wasnt watching thernfight right. Clean punching, ring generalship, and defense, these were all inrnSotos pocket most of the night. I find it hard to believe that the jurists hadrnthe audacity to go with Juarez, the house fighter, and again, a huge bettingrnfavorite in a few particular rounds. Now 37-5-2, (21 KOs) Soto is thern”interim” WBC featherweightrnchampion. he will next met Korean In Jun Chi for the actual title. Juarez,rnlosing for the first time is now 23-1, (16 KOs).

FERNANDO WINS OVER CASTILLEJO INrn”SEMI-STINKER”

And before you think that the “stinker” tag hasrnto do with Fernando Vargas, itrndoesnt really. The 37-year old Spaniard Javier Castillejo, twice the so-called WBC 154 lb. champion, he and Vargas both weighed the divisionrnlimit. But his days of beating good fighters, if they ever really existed, theyrnwere a long time ago, as Javiers about as shot as they come. A knockdown inrnthe third, that was the only time Castillejo was horizontal. Vargas, now 26-2,rn(22 KOs) boxed well throughout and deserved the ten round decision without anyrndebate.

BUSTED JAW, & VARGAS STILL STAYED ON COURSE!

After ten rounds, the official cards read 97-92, 97-92,& 98-91, all for Vargas who landed 73 punches more punches than Castillejornover ten rounds. A swollen jaw may turn out to be broken, but from the earlyrnstages, Fernando fought through it all to prevail. Javier is now 58-6, (39 KOs).rnA mini-riot ensued post fight, and the HBO cameras caught it. Some members of the Vargas crew seemed to berninvolved.

Pedro Fernandez

Contact the writer Pedro@RingTalk.com

SATURDAY’S FIGHTS, "ODDS & PREDICTIONS"

FERNANDO VARGAS 25-2, (22 KOs) VS. JAVIER CASTILLEJO 58-5, (39 KOs)

Vargas 11-5 betting choice! Both fighters weighed 154 lbs. forrnChicago HBO fight. Ive seen a lot of fighters say that theyrnhad rededicated themselves after a loss. Most of the time, the pug goes throughrnthe motions, all the while talking a good game. By making Vargas an 11-5rnfavorite over Castillejo, I do so because Vargas is younger, faster, hits harder,rnand is deeper in talent. I also believe he truly is rededicated. Bright spotrnfor Spaniard is that Jorge beat Kasim Ouma killer RomanrnKarmazin, but that was 37 months ago. Vargas on points is the logicalrnending. Wagering $2,200 beans to win $1,000.,

SATURDAYS FIGHTS, “ODDS & PREDICTIONS”

FERNANDO VARGAS 25-2, (22 KOs) VS. JAVIER CASTILLEJO 58-5, (39 KOs)

Vargas 11-5 betting choice! Both fighters weighed 154 lbs. forrnChicago HBO fight. Ive seen a lot of fighters say that theyrnhad rededicated themselves after a loss. Most of the time, the pug goes throughrnthe motions, all the while talking a good game. By making Vargas an 11-5rnfavorite over Castillejo, I do so because Vargas is younger, faster, hits harder,rnand is deeper in talent. I also believe he truly is rededicated. Bright spotrnfor Spaniard is that Jorge beat Kasim Ouma killer RomanrnKarmazin, but that was 37 months ago. Vargas on points is the logicalrnending. Wagering $2,200 beans to win $1,000.

ROCKY JUAREZ 23-0, (16 KOs) VS. HUMBERTO SOTO 36-5-2, (26 KOs)

Juarez 3-1.WBC “interim” title.rnBoth weighed 126 lbs. Mexican Soto four inches taller than Rocky, and herndoesnt lose often. But most of his wins are against C+ guys. That being said,rnthe only way I can see Juarez losing here is if he were to havern”died” to make the weight. Dont think thats the case. Look forrnJuarez to win, possibly by stoppage. $1,500 beans to win $500 on Houstonian.

ROBERTO VASQUEZ 19-1, (16 KOs) VS. JOSE AGUIRRE 33-3-1, (20 KOs)

Vasquez 4-1. At Panama, WBA 108 lb. title held by Vasquez. Southpaw from Panama hasnt lostrnsince professional debut. Jose was KOd in last fight, a WBC title go. Im expecting another KO loss for Aguirre, as Vasquezrnsaid to be in a different league. Dropping $4,000 beans to snag $1,000.

HUGO CAZARES 20-3-1, (14 KOs) VS. ALEX SANCHEZ 31-5-1, (21 KOs)

Hugo 2 to 1. WBO 108 lb. title. in Puerto Rico. Hometown guy Alex KOmargin:0in;margin-bottom:.0001pt>Pedro Fernandez

Contact thernwriter Pedro@RingTalk.com

WARD & AUDLEY TOP TV’S "BEST DAMN SHOW"

BEST DAMN OLYMPIANS ON FOX SPORTS TONIGHT!

San Jose, CA-Even though Audley Harrison is himself aheavyweight 2000 Olympic Gold Medallist, he wasnt the”heavyweight” in the house yesterday afternoon at the Goossen-TutorPromotions weigh in that took place at the downtown Hilton. No, the”heavyweight” of boxing in California, is actually a middleweight in 2004Olympic Gold Medallist Andre Ward. Now 4-0, the 159.5 lb. Oakland, CAresident will tonight co-headline “The Best Damn Sports Show“that airs on Fox Sports Net and starts at 8 PM ET or 5 PM PT., “BEST DAMN OLYMPIANS” ON FOX SPORTS TONIGHT!

San Jose, CA-Even though Audley Harrison is himself aheavyweight 2000 Olympic Gold Medallist, he wasnt the”heavyweight” in the house yesterday afternoon at the Goossen-TutorPromotions weigh in that took place at the downtown Hilton. No, the”heavyweight” of boxing in California, is actually a middleweight in 2004Olympic Gold Medallist Andre Ward. Now 4-0, the 159.5 lb. Oakland, CAresident will tonight co-headline “The Best Damn Sports Show“that airs on Fox Sports Net and starts at 8 PM ET or 5 PM PT.

WARD LEARNING TO FIGHT “PRO” STYLE!

Having been at this for a little while now, Ive seen Olympic boxers come andgo. Some, they can never change their fighting mode, this from “fencingwith gloves” (AKA amateur boxing), to that of professional prizefighting.A classic example of this was 1984 Olympic Gold Medallist Mark Breland.Others, because of their styles cannot fight amateur as well as they canprofessional. Case in point, two-time professional champion FernandoVargas!

BAY AREA MEDIA “ICON” RADNICH HAS QUESTIONS!

The longtime Sports Director at KRON TV inSan Francisco is Gary Radnich. The son of a professionalfighter himself, Radnich also hosts a morning talk show onKNBR radio. While appearing withGary, and fellow KNBR host RayWoodson, I broached the subject of AndreWard. Radnich, who also played basketball for theUniversity of Nevada at Las Vegasback in the day, he said, “Is it me, or has he (Andre) just not shinedlike the other Olympic champs?”

GARY THINKS IM OVERBOARD WITH THE HYPE!

Radnich, when I said that I thought Ward, “was thebest amateur to come out of the Olympics since 1976.” And that,”Andre would carry the sport into the 21st century,” that withoutindividuals like him, that the sport might fall off a cliff and die, Radnich,he sort of scoffed a bit. Look, I saw this 21-year old fight when nobody elseeven knew who Andre Ward even was. And amazing, well that alone doesnt evenbegin to describe him.

THINK ABOUT THESE QUALIFICATIONS!

Before entering the Olympics at an unnatural 178 lbs.,Andre did this so his friend Andre Dirrell could fight at 165 lbs. In his march to the Gold Medal last yearin Athens, Andre Ward beat back five-former world amateur champions! Havinglost last in 1997, this when he was all but 13 years old. Ward is more focusedthan a man many years his senior. Combining this with incredible boxing skills,his physical and mental strengths, they are indeed daunting.

LOOKING TO HAMMER “THE HAMMER” TONIGHT ON FOX

The now 4-0 Ward, tonight will face the 12-4 ChristopherHolt (159). Dubbed “TheHammer,” Mr. Holt will come to fight andgive his all. That being said, this is just another step in the learningprocess of Andre ward, a fighter destined for greatness!

AUDLEY MEETS FIREPLUG WIGGINS!

People think that the 220 lb. RobertWiggins has his hands full seeing hell be facingOlympic champ Audley Harrisontonight at the H.P. Pavilion. Located in “Silicon Valley,” the homeof the National Hockey Leagues “San Jose Sharks,” the arena should rock tonight as everybody fighting here feelsthey can win! Having knocked out “KO artist” CourageTshabalala in a July 1 fight, Wiggins, who isntbuilt anything like Hercules, he is 20-4-1, with 12 whacks! Both men arelefties, and yesterday the 18-0, (13 KOs) Audley scaled 249 lbs.

OLYMPIAN ANDRE DIRRELL ON CARD AS WELL!

2004 Olympic Bronze Medallist Andre Dirrell, 166.5, goes for win #5 tonight when he engages the alsounbeaten Juan Camacho, 164.5, whois 3-0, with 3 KOs! First LIVE bout is 4:30 PM San Jose time. TV time is 8 PMET & 5 PM PT. Tickets are available at the door, and online at www.Ticketmaster.com

Pedro FernandezNote: Thewriter can be reached Pedro@RingTalk.com

VARGAS LAW SUIT PINS "RICO" TAIL ON WBC!

MAIN EVENTS ATTORNEY LOOKING TO FINISH OFF WBC!

Having in my tenure seen scores of lawsuits, filed, dismissed, adjudicated,etc, the litigation filed by attorney Pat English on behalf ofFernando Vargas seems to work for me, both from a legalperspective, and one of common sense. Seeing a judge and a jury will end upwith this case, it is vital that the picture being painted by English is onethat can that everybody can easily understand. And they can do so withouthaving an intimate knowledge of the boxing business., MAIN EVENTS ATTORNEY LOOKING TO FINISH OFF WBC!

Having in my tenure seen scores of lawsuits, filed, dismissed, adjudicated,etc, the litigation filed by attorney Pat English on behalf ofFernando Vargas seems to work for me, both from a legalperspective, and one of common sense. Seeing a judge and a jury will end upwith this case, it is vital that the picture being painted by English is onethat can that everybody can easily understand. And they can do so withouthaving an intimate knowledge of the boxing business.

IS THIS THE "STRIP JOB" THAT BREAKS JOSES BACK?

This action is stemming from the fact that World Boxing Council(WBC) President Jose Sulaiman stripped JavierCastillejo of the green 154 lb. belt. This was done, according toSulaiman and company because Ricardo Mayorga was moredeserving of a title shot than Vargas. Without writing a novel, the Nicaraguan,who was charged with sexual assault in his native land, and is still supposedlybeing prosecuted, "El Matador" had lost two of histhree most recent fights. Beating one of the Mitchell twins (it was Eric, buthe and Aaron are identical), this was his lone win in the three scraps he hashad since his defeating Vernon Forrest for the second time in2003.

VARGAS SAYS ANTI-RACKETEERING LAWS BROKE!

English essentially declares that the WBC is an "OngoingCriminal Enterprise," and is charging the Mexico City based groupwith violating Federal anti-racketeering laws (AKA the RICOAct). He is charging that among other things,that the WBC has committed theseunlawful actions time and again (a continuing pattern says English). Besidesthe stripping of Graciano Rocchigiani, (resulting in the WBC losing a $30+ million suit, which was settled for less) theyhave been sued for similar grounds by Lennox Lewis on a number of occasions, in addition to EvanderHolyfield, and others.

EXHIBITS PART OF A "CONVINCING"PAPER TRAIL

In addition to the allegations by English/Vargas, theattorney put together a paper trail which strongly suggests the possibilitythat the WBC committed "wirefraud," transferring in one instance $200,000, but only reporting it as$9,800. Supposedly this was done in order to get under the radar of a BankruptcyCourt. According to the complaint, the "WBCBankruptcy," it was actually a scheme.First, the idea was to drain the accounts of the WBC, this if a settlement with Rocchigiani couldnt be reached. Andat the same time, use the funds as "seed" money to start anothersanctioning body if they had to close their doors.

PAPER TRAIL, IS AGAIN SOMEWHAT IMPRESSIVE!

In more than one instance, English asserts that JoseSulaiman had large sums of money that belonged to the non-profit organization,as the WBC is classified.According to the paerwork filed in New York Federal Court, large sums of cashwere transferred into accounts of JosÈ Sulaimans companies, and or familymembers. In all, it was a damning 50-page indictment of the WBC by English, who will be referred to from here on as the "BenMatlock" (TV Lawyer with one blue suit) ofboxing.

WHAT DOES THIS MEAN YOU ASK?

Look, the way I see things the WBC has had one foot on the banana peel for decades. How JoseSulaiman has been able to make, and then get away with arbitrary decisions thathave impacted boxers for as long as they live, this has always blown me away. Iremember telling Sulaiman to take the Rocchigiani suit seriously soon after itwas filed. El Presidente, he scoffed at anybody telling him what he could orcouldnt do with his (WBC) titles.Will English and Vargas settle? Will a title shot make this all go away? Notlikely, as it appears English wants to sever the WBCs carotid artery.

WE ASK THE WBC TO RESPOND

This will serve as a formal request to the WBC to respond to these charges in a written manner that is 600words or less.

Pedro Fernandez

Contact the writer Pedro@RingTalk.com

LUISITO ESPINOSA ABOUT TO GET "REAL" HURT?

ILL-ADVISED LUISITO FACES MONGOLIAN "KILLER!"

When I was with the San Francisco Police Dept., I worked in anumber of stations, assignments, etc. For better than a year I was assigned tothe "Community Relations" unit, this until I wentagainst a cop who had assaulted a 106 lb. boxer at the Police gym. And while Iwas working in Community Relations for the Latin community, Joe Robleswas acting in that capacity for the Filipino population of San Francisco. Hewas naive I thought, but Joe was a nicer than nice guy that got things done inhis own way., ILL-ADVISED LUISITO FACES MONGOLIAN "KILLER!"

When I was with the San Francisco Police Dept., I worked in anumber of stations, assignments, etc. For better than a year I was assigned tothe "Community Relations" unit, this until I wentagainst a cop who had assaulted a 106 lb. boxer at the Police gym. And while Iwas working in Community Relations for the Latin community, Joe Robleswas acting in that capacity for the Filipino population of San Francisco. Hewas naive I thought, but Joe was a nicer than nice guy that got things done inhis own way.

S.F. COP NOW MANAGES LUISITO ESPINOSA!

Yesterday afternoon, while attending the "Best Damn Night OfOlympians" weigh in at the San Jose Hilton, I was approached byRobles whom I hadnt seen in many years. We shook hands, and then he dropped abomb on me when I asked him what he was doing there? "I am the manager ofLuisito Espinosa." To that, and with San Jose Mercury Newswriter Dylan Hernandez standing beside me, I said. "Whatare you trying to do? Get a 38-year old man killed?"

STICK TO POLICE REPORTS & TICKETS!

I explained to Robles that Lakva Sim, Espinosas opponent in this scheduled eight rounder, (of whomRobles knew nothing about) that he was not only a natural lightweight, but anex-champion at 135 lbs. as well! Luisito on the other hand, he is a tall abantamweight (118). The fact that he had been brutalized by the"ordinary" Cristobal Cruz in February, and that he had lost four of his last six boutssince 2001, and ALL by knockout! None of this would dissuade Robles, as I triedto get him to pull Espinosa from the card.

CALIFORNIA ATHLETIC COMMISSION STEPS IN!

Obviously prompted by my column of Tuesday, in that I wasfearful of Espinosa really getting hurt, the California StateAthletic Commission has cut the fight (seeslaughter) from eight rounds to six. In addition, somebody close to thepromotion told me that the referee, that he would be keeping a close eye onEspinosa. Should things even begin to appear to get ugly, Im told theyll stopthe fight in a second!

ESPINOSAS PEOPLE THREATENING!

And while it wasnt Robles himself, somebody inassociation with Espinosa has been sending daunting emails, and phone calls ofa similar nature to www.RingTalk.comwriter Jason "The Pinoy" Aniel. They are saying that if the fight is called off, that TeamEspinosa will be filing suit, and charging that Iam attempting to deny Espinosa the right to fight! According to "ThePinoy," Espinosa has been told at the 11thhour that he must take an MRIbefore he can box. Itll be interesting to see how this plays out.

GOVERNMENT & ROD NAZARIO SCREWED "KING LOUIE?"

When Luisito fought Carlos Rios in the Philippines in 1997, he was guaranteed a $150,000payday. Rios, he had his money before he stepped in the ring. Luisito, thenmanaged by Japans Joe Koizumi, hewas never paid! And more than one story said that Koizumi, when he said hewouldnt send Luisito out to box without first being paid, that somebody pusheda gun in his ribs. The crowd of better than 100,000, they saw "KingLouie" fight for the last time on Philippinesoil, win by KO in six, and yet he never got paid! Never!

ALL PINOYS/PINAYS (FILIPINOS) SHOULD BE "ASHAMED!"

And while Ive been told my favorite Filipino turd RodNazario, even though he was involved with the Espinosa-Rios promotion, that itwas in actuality the Philippine Government that had guaranteed the $150,000purse that Luisito never received! A national hero like Espinosa, he shouldntbe fighting at 38 years, this seeing time has eroded his skills, if not hiswill. Lets just hope and pray that nothing happens to "KingLouie" tonight! For the record, Espinosa is47-13, with 26 KOs. The Mongolian Sim, he has a record of 20-4-1, with 17early wins!

Pedro Fernandez

The writer can be reached at Pedro@RingTalk.com

SOME BRIGHT SPOTS IN TUESDAY NOTEBOOK!

Having had a residence in the "red light district of sports" (AKAboxing) for some 20+ years now, Ive never been more cynical. That being said,there are instances of which I take note that tells me that things might aregetting better. Last week, trainer Oscar Suarez had his firstpromotional endeavor at the Turning Stone Casino in Verano,NY., Having had a residence in the "red light district of sports" (AKAboxing) for some 20+ years now, Ive never been more cynical. That being said,there are instances of which I take note that tells me that things might aregetting better. Last week, trainer Oscar Suarez had his firstpromotional endeavor at the Turning Stone Casino in Verano,NY. It was a blazing success with light heavy Yusef Mackremaining so with a UD in ten over Thomas Reid (31-16). Yusefimproves to 19-0, (11 KOs). And while Im not expecting Suarez to give DonKing or Bob Arum a run for their money, what issignificant is that Suarez is an honest man, a trait that is indeed a scarcitynot only in boxing, but in the world at large! Once-licked southpaw lightweightAgnaldo Nunes of Brazil was victorious on this initial "FistacuffsBoxing" promotion…FUTURE OF GAME IN SAN JOSE TODAY:Later today, there will be a media gathering in San Jose, CA, this to pump up Dan"Big Bird" Goossens "Night of Olympians," set forThursday and topped by 2004 Gold Medallist Andre Ward, and 2000Gold Medal winner Audley Harrison. And while theunbeaten Brit Audley has an attitude that will not endearhim to the fans, or the press, Ward is the exact opposite! Now 4-0, the kidthat fought at 178 lbs. because his good friend and eventual BronzeMedallist Andre Durrell was campaigning at 165lbs. How good is Andre Ward? He beat five-World champions to walk away with the178 lb. Gold in Athens. Speaking of Durrell, he is on the bill as is 2004Olympic heavyweight Diven Vargas. And in addition, Oscar De La Hoyas promotional charge Juan de Dios Navarro Ramirez of Mexico is debuting. Tickets for the 4:30 PM LIVE card thatwill be aired on Foxs "The Best Damn Sports Show" at 5:00 PM PT/8:00 PM ET will be available at the door, inaddition to being online at www.Ticketmaster.com…BUSLOAD OF"RING TALK FAMILY MEMBERS ON HAND! About 50fans, all sporting www.RingTalk.com teeshirts, they were ticket winners taken from the last four Sunday night showswill be present at the San Jose Arena Thursday…DID "MR. DEATH" APPROVETHIS? A sad fight on the card has LuisitoEspinosa getting in the ring with LakvaSim. The Mongolian is a killer and the two-timechamp from the Philippines, Luisito, he is already so close to being ring dead.Top guy Armando Garcia of the CaliforniaCommission must have allowed #2 guy DeanLouhis to approve this "accident"waiting to happen…VALCARCEL CLEARED & LOOKING TO FUTURE: Several months ago, I presented an article in which WBOPresident Francisco "Paco" Valcarcelwas accused of assaulting an underage female in the Dominican Republic. I toldyou right then and there that this was not a picture, that it was in fact aframe! As it turned out, I was right, as there was a plot, perpetrated bythe then manager of Dominican fighter Joan Guzman, to compromise and then blackmail the WBO leader. Now even though the crooks admitted to this conspiracy,Valcarcel will probably never fully recover from these false allegations. Inclosing, Valcarcel was lucky the plotters were exposed. But you can bet thatmore people read of the false allegations, than did the story that Paco was thevictim of a criminal conspiracy!!!ARIZONA GETTING WORSE DAY BYDAY: I expect the Arizona BoxingCommission to try and say that trainer JoeDiaz committed Fraud at a meeting next month.Commission head John Montano hasdenied Diaz a trainers license, and "Yory Boy" Campas a license to fight in Arizona. If ever there was a call, no aloud cry for a Federal Boxing Commission, its the goings on in Arizona.Longtime listener Jerry called "Ring Talk Radio" from Phoenix Sunday and flat out said, "I think theArizona Commission is crooked." This was after I reported that a Judge inPhoenix dismissed the bounced $5,000 check charge and warrant of promoter PeterMc Kinn. The reason for the dismissal Im told is,"In the interest of justice!" What about the injustice that Mc Kinnwrote both Campas a check in May of 2004 for $5,000. At the same time, Mc Kinnstiffed the IBA rep NormLongtin when his $500 check bounced as well! WATCHTHE $5,000 CHECK…UNLIKE the Phoenix press,I went to the bank and found out that Mc Kinn, that he never even had $5,000 inthe account! Promoter Mc Kinn wrote checks to Longtin and Campas that hehimself has still made good! LEGAL PICKETING IN ARIZONA ISILLEGAL! And documentation from the Commissionreportedly states that the reason why "Yory Boy"Campas was denied a boxing license by JohnMontano, is that he picketed in front of Montanos Athletic Commission office anumber of times to protest the bounced $5,000 bounced check! Pedro FernandezContact thewriter Pedro@RRingTalk.com

"24 KARAT" ROLD ON SERIOUS BOXING VIRUS

MAYORGA CLEARS PATH TO VARGAS! OR DOES HE?

Prizefighting is a term of art used less commonly over the years, but withSaturdays win by former World welterweight champion Ricardo Mayorgaover Michelle Piccirillo, it might be time to dust it off.Indeed, when two men step between the ropes of a boxing ring, they are fightingfor the ultimate prize. Nah, it isnt titles, legacy or women, (althoughfeminine favors could be considered a close second.), MAYORGA CLEARS PATH TO VARGAS! OR DOES HE?

Prizefighting is a term of art used less commonly over the years, but withSaturdays win by former World welterweight champion Ricardo Mayorgaover Michelle Piccirillo, it might be time to dust it off.Indeed, when two men step between the ropes of a boxing ring, they are fightingfor the ultimate prize. Nah, it isnt titles, legacy or women, (althoughfeminine favors could be considered a close second.)

ITS ALL ABOUT THE BENJAMIN FRANKLINS!

Fighters fight for the money period! With his three knockdown unanimousdecision win in hand, and the no-longer-vacant WBC 154-lb.belt hanging off his shoulder, the Nicaraguan Mayorga will spend the next sevendays waiting with Marlboro breath to see if there is a sevenfigure payday in his immediate future. Or will Mayorga and his WBC titlerecognition end up in court?

“FEROCIOUS FERNANDO” BATTLES PRIDE OF SPAIN!

Thats because in four days from now, former 1996 U.S. Olympianand two-time jr. middleweight champ Fernando Vargas of Oxnard,CA will take on his toughest foe since his 2002 loss to Oscar De LaHoya. Across the ring will be former two-time WBCtitleholder in Javier Castillejo of Spain, and thecircumstances of his last title loss add a layer of intrigue to what would seema predictable affair between two non-deserving participants.

WBC TAKES THE GREEN BELT FROM SPANIARD

The WBC titleMayorga now holds was stripped from Castillejo (since Mayorga and Piccirillohad earned mandatory title shots with their never having a win over a top ten154 lb. contender) and now he and Vargas will face off to determine themandatory contender. Keeping up with that? Dont bother; just repeat after me.”The WBC is beyond justretarded. Theyre……” Feel better? Good. Moving on.

BARRING UPSET/SUIT, MAYORGA-VARGAS HOT TICKET!

With each man garnering a reputation as an all-action fanfavorite over the last few years, Vargas and Mayorga has the makings of a dreamfight. Moreover, unless Winky Wright returns to defend his World title at 154, this is the only topdollar draw in the division right now. In fact, Winky against either man wontdraw as well as a fight between the two. Boxing has been blessed this year withbig money matches in every division from jr. lightweight (130) to cruiserweight(190); every division but the jr. middleweight division. Should Vargas win,this will be that fight and the seemingly growing health of the game will beall the better for it.

TEAM VARGAS SAYS THEYRE SUING WBC!

In the midst of all of this, manager RolandoArrelano has said that Vargas, with MainEvents attorney Pat English handling matters, that “Ferocious Fernando” will file suit this week against the WBC because they took away recognition from Castillejo. And thatthis arbitrary decision in their opinion denies Vargas his crack at the greenbelt. The last time this occurred, the Mexico City based sanctioning mob lost$32 million in court to ex-light heavyweight king GracianoRocchigiani. This was when JoseSulaiman and company took his title and gave itto Roy Jones Jr.

HATE TO SAY I TOLD YOU SO BUT…I DID!

Last week I predicted that Ring Magazine would move Jeff Lacy (IBF) past MarcusBeyer (WBC) to the #3 spot in their rankings and justify a decision tosanction the expected November clash between he and Joe Calzaghe (WBO) or theirvacant title. They did and #2 contender Mikkel Kessler (WBA) deserves thegood laugh that should provide. Fans, this now marks a perfect record of TheRing being willing to fill their vacancies withmatch between their first and third rated contenders. Last I checked, #2 issupposed to be better than three!

RING EDITOR DOESNT JUSTIFY MOVE!

On their website late last week, The Ring editor Nigel Collins wrote, “The fact that there has not been a genuine supermiddleweight champion since The Ring launched its championship policy three years ago, coupled withthe unlikelihood of a bout between Calzaghe and #2 contender Mikkel Kessler inthe near future, has led The Ringto the conclusion that the Calzaghe-Lacy bout should be for the vacant worldtitle.” Nowhere in that statement does Collins state that he thinks Lacyis more deserving than Kessler, the proper gauge for such a thing. As ESPN and HBO have addedto the momentum of this championship policy by endorsing it on air, thedanger of a magazine driven by profit looking to get their belts seen and thusaccepted to the widest audience is present.

RING RATINGS, ARE THEY A BIT SUSPECT?

This decision, and the decision that crowned VitaliKlitschko champion at heavyweight, draw TheRings credibility into even sharper question.Remember, the Ring magazine ratings were the centerpiece of the “UnitedStates Boxing Championships” scandal of thelate 70s. Editor John Ortsupplied (see sold) fraudulent ratings. This was exposed by boxing writer/icon Malcolm”Flash” Gordon. ABC ended up pulling the televised tournament from the air, and aFederal probe resulted.

“24-KARAT” NOTEBOOK…

I just woke up to find out ex-champ HasimRahman beat his first legitimate top-ten opponent(Monte Barrett) in almost fiveyears. The nature of his performance was such that I doubt WBC champion VitaliKlitschko is losing any sleep…THE REAL SCOOP ON COTTO: I havent had a chance to say it yet, but MiguelCotto versus Gianluca Branca is crap even if it is the undercard of the intriguing SamuelPeter-Wladimir Klitschko fight. HBO can do better than this and so can Cotto. He is the mostexperienced green fighter of all time…SUPERFLY SUPREMACY: Martin Castilloreigns supreme at 115 lbs. That being said, 115 lbs. (super flyweight) is thebest division right now in the game of boxing. Why is Castillo not on yourpound for pound list?…IS THE “SUPERFIGHT” VIRUSBACK? If Zab Judah and Floyd Mayweather clash for Judahs World welterweight title in November, then Ihave mad props for both. This is sort of like the 70s the sort of high-risk, high-reward battle that helps makeslegacies.

Cliff Rold

Note: “24-Karat” Rold is not just the best youngboxing writer on the planet. He is also an award winning poet and graduatestudent in U.S. Foreign Policy at the American University in Washington DC. Hecan be reached with your comments at 24KaratRold@Comcast.net

SUNDAY MORNING FIGHT FOLLIES & RESULTS!

ROCK and MONTE TOP PPV CARD THAT SHOULDNT HAVEBEEN

Chicago, IL-The real story about the Saturday night card Don Kingput on, is that there really wasnt one! It was simply a night of Pay Per View necessitatedby the fact nobody was really interested in airing this limp card. PromoterKing couldnt get Showtime or HBO to make itpart of their lineup, thus a few of you plucked down the ducats needed to view,”Global Combat,” live from Chicago, IL. On top ofthis yawner was the (yawn) “interim” WBC titleheavyweight title pitting Hasim Rahman and the heavyweightdivisions gatekeeper Monte Barrett.,

ROCK & MONTE TOP PPV CARD THAT SHOULDNT HAVEBEEN

Chicago, IL-The real story about the Saturday night card Don Kingput on, is that there really wasnt one! It was simply a night of Pay Per View necessitatedby the fact nobody was really interested in airing this limp card. PromoterKing couldnt get Showtime or HBO to make itpart of their lineup, thus a few of you plucked down the ducats needed to view,”Global Combat,” live from Chicago, IL. On top ofthis yawner was the (yawn) “interim” WBC titleheavyweight title pitting Hasim Rahman and the heavyweightdivisions gatekeeper Monte Barrett.

“ROCK” DID LITTLE TO SCARE ANYBODY! (EXCEPT VITALI)

As Rahman, 236 lbs., went through the motions, over 11 heats Barrett seemed toknow he was second best. Then came the 12th round, and if you were still awake,(or got TIVO) Barrett socked “Rock“hard enough to hurt him. Too little, too late as Rahman won 116-112 once, and118-110 twice, this as the Baltimore fighter upped his log to 41-5-1, (33KOs). Barrett, 224, of New York City declines to 31-4, with 17 early wins.Rahman faces the thought to be gutless Vitali Klitschko, thisif Vitali can get that hangnail medically cleared.

MAYORGA WINS TAINTED BELT

Ricardo Mayorga (28-5-1, 23 KOs) ofNicaragua became the centerpiece of a lawsuit Saturday night as he bestedItalian ravioli Michele Piccirillo(44-3, 28 KOs) over 12, in a bout sanctioned by the WBC for the 154 lb. trinket. Both weighed 154. BUT that title wastaken from Jorge Castillejo, thisbecause the Spaniard signed to fight Fernando Vargas next week. The WBCstripped Castillejo for not meeting Mayorga who hasnt won a major fight since2003. And Vargas, with attorney Pat English calling the shots, he has indicated he will be filing suit thisweek in New York.

IF WBC LOSES AGAIN, THEYRE SURELY TOAST!

The last time somebody took the WBC and el Presidente Jose Sulaiman to court for taking away the green title belt, it was GracianoRocchigiani. And when the dust settled, Sulaimanhad been held in “contempt of court” 11 times, and lost a $32+million dollar judgment. Negotiations have resulted in a settlement for farless than that amount Im told. But Pat English is no schmo, and believe mewhen I say he was just waiting (timing is everything) for somebody other thanJorge Castillejo to be crowned WBCtitleholder.

COLLAZO HUMILIATES EX-LIGHTWEIGHT KING

Once beaten Luis Collazo, 147, he of New York City, Luistoyed with Miguel Angel Gonzalez, 146.5, in a mismatch billed as being for the WBAwelterweight title. The ex-lightweight (135)champ from Mexico was in the fight all the way up until…the first bell. Itwas stopped some seven rounds later. Collazo is now 25-1, (12 KOs). Gonzalez,who fought Oscar De La Hoya backin 1997, HE HAD LOST his last fight, again a WBA welterweight title fight in which he won only one round 11months ago to then champ Cory Spinks. Miguel is 49-5-1, (35 KOs).

UPSET IN BATTLE OF AFRICAN JR. MIDDLES

Unheralded Robert Kamya, 153, Uganda, brought a 14-4 record into a WBC regional title fight with Alex Bunema, 154, originally out of the Congo. After 36 minutes, Kamya wasawarded a majority decision with scores of 115-112, 114-112, & 113-113.Bunema is now 26-5-2, (12 KOs). Upstart Kamya is now 15-5, (4 KOs).

NOTES: SYCUAN HAS “KO KIDS” IN ACTION! Both Julio Cesar Chavez Jr. and Jorge Paez Jr., they both scored sensational one-punch knockouts Friday nightin Laredo, TX. Chavez, 144, of Mexico ended things with a convincing right handin the first round that all but separated Jonathan Nelson, 138, Oklahoma. Jr. is now 21 & zip, with KO 16 in hand.Nelson falls to 10-11. Jorge Paez Jr., 138, he flattened Javier Segura, 134.5, with a single lead left hook, this while winding up theright in bolo-punch like fashion. Paez improves to 3-0, all KOs! Segura is4-11. MAIN EVENT: GerardoEspinosa, 125, of Tijuana, he was beaten via tenround majority decision, this as undefeated Oxnard, CA product JoseMiguel Aguiniga, 128.5, rolled to 29-0, with 14early endings. Hard punching Espinosa is now 28-9, with 26 whacks…GOLDENBOY PREFERS “PEPSI” IN DENVER: Hometownguy Donald Camarena, 140, got win#16 against one defeat, when he turned back Mexican JorgeAlberto Padilla, 138, over ten sessions.Inexperienced Padilla is now 6-2, with 1 KO!

Pedro Fernandez

Contact the writer Pedro@RingTalk.com

WEEKEND "FIGHT FACTS" JUST FOR YOU!

WIREHAIRED WONDER RETURNS TO SHOWTIME PPV…Beforewe get to the Friday night mix, the Don King card in Chicagotomorrow night piting ex-champ for a minute Hasim Rahman andMonte Barrett is going 12 heats or less for the "Interim" WBCheavyweight title.,

WIREHAIRED WONDER RETURNS TO SHOWTIME PPV…Beforewe get to the Friday night mix, the Don King card in Chicagotomorrow night piting ex-champ for a minute Hasim Rahman andMonte Barrett is going 12 heats or less for the "Interim" WBCheavyweight title. "Interim" because champion VitaliKlitschko has the stones of a hamster, as he has opted out of twoscheduled meetings with Rahman (40-5-1, 35 KOs), a Baltimore, MD native. Dontbelieve the hype, when "Rock" is in shape, he is one of, or quitepossibly be the best of the heavyweights today. The conditioning factor hasalways been Hasims albatross. He admitted such. "The low point was losingto John Ruiz. Man, I was beating myself. No more!" At31-3, with 17 shorts, Monte Barrett is no hobo! A former New York CityGolden Gloves champion, the kid from Queens is the"gatekeeper" that is getting a title shot. And when I say gatekeeper,it is now a slight. Rather its an illustration of that he got here the hardway, by fighting. The close points loss to JoeMesi in 2003, that was his third setbackprofessionally, this after being seconded by Vladimir Klitschko (TKO 7) and Lance Whitaker over the distance. Since the majority decision (one judge hadit even) loss to Mesi, Barrett beat back unbeaten Dominick GuinnB in a dime onpoints. And last time, he KOd unbeaten Owen "What The Heck" Beck.(Story later on beck)arretts lack of pop, if theres a drawback, thats it.Rahmans chin isnt impregnable. Monte will look to set a fast pace, jabbingand moving. Rahman will have to be agressive to win, meaning if he isnt in thebest of condition, Monte would be more than just a longshot…WBATITLE FIGHT HAS IMPLICATIONS: TravisSimms (24-0, 18 KOs) is the WBA 154 lb. champion. He knocked out Alejandro Garcia in a title defense. The reason I bring Garcia up is when I wentto the WBA website, Garcia is nowlisted as champion. And he is defending those "tainted" laurels underRahman-Barrett against Italian fall guy Lucca Mesi (28-5-1, 11 KOs) who I expect to get waxed inside of fiveheats…maybe six. The WBA claimedthat Garcia vs. Rhoshii Wells in May was for the "Interim" title. Butwhen I went to their website, it is Garcia and not Simms listed as champion at154 lbs…MORE SUSPECT 154 LB. TITLES: Another "suspect" title (WBC 154) is at stake when ex-welterweight champ RicardoMayorga (27-5-1, 23 stops) faces yet anotherItalian set-up in Michele Piccirillo. At 44-2, with 28 early endings, his claim to fame is getting awin over Cory Spinks that took theterm "heist" to another level. With wins over FrankieRandall and Rafael Pineda being his brightest spots, look for this Michele to be turnedinto linquini by the heavy handed Mexican. ODDS &PREDICTIONS: Seeing I am enjoying the days ofsummer, and havent handicapped the fights in quite a while (Ill fix thatbefore Monday) here is the "Ring Talk" betting line for Saturday. Rahman 11-5 over Monte. EitherMonte Barrett steps it up another notch, or Rahman sets up the KO of Klitschkowith a points win at the least…Mayorga 2-1 over Michele. Saw Nicaraguanmadman in Las Vegas in June. He was BIG. Can he make 154 without handicap?Neither fight worth chancing your money with wagers. KINGSFINANCIAL TURKEY? Having watched promoter DonKing wave his magical wand too many times tocount, Ive got to think hes faced with a loser with this PPV offering…FRIDAYNIGHTS ALL RIGHT FOR FIGHTING…Starting off inArgentina, Jorge Barrios, the WBO 130 lb. king (43-2-1, 31 KOs) defends for the first time(after stopping favorite Mike Anchondo) at home against Puerto Rican Victor Santiago (18-3-1, 13 KOs Pepsi Center. Themain has hometown guy (15-1, 9 KOs) Daniel Camarena against 6-1, (1 KO) Jorge Padilla of Mexico City dancing ten or less. Lets make Daniel a 7-5favorite because 6-1 fighters from Mexico City are often better than 15-1 pugsout of Denver..GUILTY IN TIJUANA? GuiltyPromotions goes tonight from Tee Jay (Tijuana,MX) with a card featuring a guy billed as being 19-2, (17 KOs) in JoseRios, who has now been reclassified at 3-1, with1 KO. A 12-round main (sic) event Rios is facing 15-16 ManuelSarabiaSYCUAN RINGSIDEPROMOTIONS HAS CHAVEZ JR. IN LAREDO: 20-0 JulioCesar Chavez Jr. meets 10-10 JonathanNelson of Oklahoma City. Expect JorgePaez Jr. (2-0, 2 KOs) will trample oft-beaten JavierSegura. Main event has Jose MiguelAguiniga (28-0, 14 whacks) out of Oxnard, Ca andmanaged by Cameron Dunkin, goingten or less (see less)with Gerardo Espinosa (28-8, 26 KOs).

Pedro Fernandez

You can contact the writer Pedro@RingTalk.com

HOPKINS WRONGED & MUCH MORE!

HOPKINS-TAYLOR MET THE HYPE!

Regardless of whether you scored the fight correctly for BernardHopkins, or scored with my Editor-in-Chief and two out of the threeofficial judges in Vegas, all can agree that Saturday was the sort of fight themiddleweight division needed. While no classic, new World champ JermainTaylor and now-former champ Hopkins engaged in a tough, competitivebattle between old and new that has fueled the best kind of barbershop debate,rematch speculation and mainstream attention. Along with all that, just as MarvinHaglers disputed loss to "Sugar Ray" Leonardkicked off a golden era of middleweight fighting (1987-1995), Saturdays boutputs on the cusp of a new super era at 160., HOPKINS-TAYLOR MET THE HYPE!

Regardless of whether you scored the fight correctly for BernardHopkins, or scored with my Editor-in-Chief and two out of the threeofficial judges in Vegas, all can agree that Saturday was the sort of fight themiddleweight division needed. While no classic, new World champ JermainTaylor and now-former champ Hopkins engaged in a tough, competitivebattle between old and new that has fueled the best kind of barbershop debate,rematch speculation and mainstream attention. Along with all that, just as MarvinHaglers disputed loss to "Sugar Ray" Leonardkicked off a golden era of middleweight fighting (1987-1995), Saturdays boutputs on the cusp of a new super era at 160.

FIRST TO THE SCORING!

Even though some have called Saturdays decision a robbery, I must disagree. While I think the decision was wrong, nothing criminal happened(outside of Duane Fords scoring the 12th for Taylor…more on that shortly).As Boston Globe writer RonBorges pointed out today, 17 of 20 boxing writerson Press Row pegged Hopkins a winner. HBO analysts Roy Jones and Max Kellermanalso favored the future Hall of Famer. My card…I had Hopkins up 7 rounds to 5with Taylor blowing a big early lead (5 rounds to 2) by being swept from the8th to the 12th on my card. Furthermore, Taylor won rounds close on many cardswith all those flurries hitting the air in front of Hopkins while, especially inthe last four rounds. I thought Hopkins beat the youngster up by landing hisshots (and the punchstats are clear on that point). So while I can seearguments on both sides, and can articulate why my side is right, DuaneFord makes the official decision hard to defend.

FORD HAD A CAR CRASH NIGHT!

Duane Ford scored the twelfth round forJermain Taylor and it was that round on his card that allowed the title tochange hands. Just how bad, how unbelievably horrendous is that piece ofscoring? For the record its not as insipid or evil as JoseGuerras 118-110 card for Ray Leonard over MarvinHagler…but it is so bad that Nevada State Athletic CommissionExecutive Director Marc Ratner released astatement that he will review the round with Ford because "from my vantagepoint…there is no question Bernard won the 12th round." In Nevada-speakthat means "damn, that was really dumb Duane." Cant say Ford wasmalicious (he was the guy who scored both Barrera-Morales I and Paulie Ayala-Bones Adams I right) but we can say it cost a man with ten years and 21 titledefenses a draw and his crown. Hopkins deserved no less!GOLD RUSH AT MIDDLEWEIGHT!

So yes, Hopkins was wronged Saturday…but is it really sobad? It was a close fight with cards on both sides of the debate all withinabout two points of each other; it has people talking; and it sets off a hellof a run for middleweight. Its been a decade since the division was thisstacked. After Hopkins finishes what he started in the rematch with Taylor (andhe will!), both men will have a field made up of current middles and risingjunior middles to contend with. Talented fighters like WinkyWright, Felix Sturm, Fernando Vargas, Ike Quartey, Kingsley Ikeke and Sam Solimanare already established as threats. Last Thursday, RomanKarmazin upset rising star KasimOuma for the IBF 154-lb. title in a compelling fight that left both men lookingthe part of future middleweight juggernaut. Saturday night in Germany, ArturAbraham defeated veteran HowardEastman to emerge as a top ten threat. Had theclose decision Saturday gone to Hopkins, he likely goes up in weight. Instead,he now will remain to shine a light on what quietly has become one of the mostexciting weight divisions in boxing. And did I mention that quality fighters JoeCalzaghe, Mikkel Kessler and JeffLacy are only slightly southward at 168 pounds?Yeah, the middleweights are back!

NEWS FOR NAVARRO FROM JAPANS SUPERFIGHT!

In a rare "superfight" for Japanese boxing, MasamoriTokuyama (31-3-1, 8 KOs) regained the Worldtitle at 115 lbs. on Monday with a wide unanimous decision over KatsushigeKawashima (28-4, 18 KOs) in their anticipatedrubber match. While I wont see the fight until mid-week, I can say immediatelythat this creates an interesting challenge for 2000 US OlympianJose Navarro. The January 2005 robbery heexperienced against Kawashima would have been easier to avenge than Tokuyamawill be to defeat. Tokuyama is no puncher but he is an awkward boxer andfrankly a better skilled fighter than Kawashima. Navarro, who is mandated toreceive the first crack at Tokuyama, he will need to be better in his secondtitle shot if he wants to be the World champion of the best division no one iswatching

"24-KARAT" NOTEBOOK

Its nice to see Max Kellerman working the airwaves for HBO. After a year where he lost both his brother and his show on FoxSports, his enthusiasm for the game remains. Hes Greg Leon dropped Hopkins to tenth on his pound for pound list behindguys like Zab Judah andRicky Hatton. I guess its great to play withyour member. Anyone else wonder how much Karmazin outweighed Ouma by during thefight last Thursday? Anyone think its become criminal to allow weigh-ins theday before the fight? The purchase of the September doubleheader of ErikMorales-Zahir Raheem and MannyPacquiao-Hector Velasquez is a slap in the faceto HBO network subscribers whohave been forced in 2005 to turn to Showtime if they want to see a big fight for less than $50.

Cliff Rold

Note: "24-Karat" Rold is not just the best young boxing writer on the planet. He alsoholds a Masters Degree in U.S. Foreign Policy from the American University inWashington DC and is an award-winning poet. He can be reached with yourcomments at 24KaratRold@Comcast.net

UNBIASED "INDEPENDENT" HEAVYWEIGHT TOP TEN!

World Heavyweight Champion: Chris Byrd.38-2-1, (20 KOs) The Flint, MI fighter defeated Vitali Klitschkoin April of 2000. Nuff said. No? Heres more, he beat a 233 lb. (slim) DavidTua, soundly defeated aged Evander Holyfield,squeaked by Fres Oquendo, Andrew Golota, as well as giganticheavyweight Jameel McCline. Chris Byrd is the most fearedheavyweight fighter since Mike Tyson!, World Heavyweight Champion: Chris Byrd.38-2-1, (20 KOs) The Flint, MI fighter defeated Vitali Klitschkoin April of 2000. Nuff said. No? Heres more, he beat a 233 lb. (slim) DavidTua, soundly defeated aged Evander Holyfield,squeaked by Fres Oquendo, Andrew Golota, as well as giganticheavyweight Jameel McCline. Chris Byrd is the most fearedheavyweight fighter since Mike Tyson!

#1. James "Lights Out" Toney: 68-4-2, (43 KOs)-With his smack down of tough-but-unskilled Johnny "Louise"Ruiz, Toney is unofficially WBAChamp as of this writing.

#2. Vitali Klitschko: 35-2, (24 KOs)Losing to aged Lennox Lewis doesnot a linear champ make. Wins over the tough-as-doughnuts CorrieSanders, blubbery Johnny Louise victim KirkJohnson, and 61, 270-lb. DannyWilliams, this to some may show championshippotential, but pale in comparison to Chris Byrds resume.

#3. Lamon Brewster: 32-2, (28 KOs)Losses to Charles Shufford and Cliff"The Black Rhino" Etienne slightlyeclipse wins over Wladimir Klitschko, Kali Meehan, and Andrew Golota.

#4: Johnny "Louise" Ruiz:41-5-1, (28 KOs) First, we must credit Lennox Lewis (or was it Pedro?) for creating the infamous "Louise"nickname. Second, we must credit Johnny for his heart, toughness and focus.Having earned the scorn of boxing fans worldwide, he battles on, and is now atwo-time heavyweight titleholder.

#5: Monte Barrett: 31-3, (17 KOs) Sincehis losses to Mount Whitaker and WladimirKlitschko, Monte has made quite a comeback. Hisloss close to Joe Mesi takes alittle luster off his resume, as he had "Baby Joe" in deep trouble and could have easily walked away thewinner.

#6. Samuel Peter: 24-0, (21 KOs) No bignames on Samuels record, but in todays heavyweight division thats not aprerequisite for a title shot. Sloppy technique not
withstanding, Peter fights angry and enjoys hurting hisopponents.

#7. Calvin Brock: 26-0, (20 KOs) Theresquite a drop-off after #6, and the ordinary Brock gets the nod here due to winover legit top five contender Jameel McCline.

#8. Luan Krasniqui: 28-1-1, (14 KOs)Luans) Thesize of the fight in this big dog is of Chihuahua proportions, and it bogglesthe mind that this giant of a man is hesitant to throw punches at guys, who arefor the most part much smaller than he.

#10. Hasim Rahman: 40-5-1, (33 KOs)Rahman has been KOd cold on more than one occasion, and as a result is alwaysone punch away from losing. Hasim is slow, lacks infighting skills and gets hita whole lot, and beating journeyman Kali Meehan doesnt make him the #1 contender.

Gabe McIntosh

Contact the writer gabe_wm@yahoo.com

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