Boxing ~Crowd Trouble on The Rise

As a boxing fan this week has been a week of anger and disappointment but sadly after hearing a 19 year old lad had lost his life after being stabbed at a boxing event in Walsall I was not surprised . Gradually over the past 2 years I have seen first hand crowd violence at boxing events get worse at  an alarming rate , to a point where you actually comment when things don’t kick off in the crowd .
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The first time I was caught up in any crowd trouble was at Crolla v Linares 1 in the MEN in Manchester . Where I was sitting ,there seemed to be a load of groups of young men who had been clearly drinking all day . The place did feel on edge the full night , there was a feeling that one spark was going ignite the place into carnage . Things stayed like that until the end of the main event and Linares won on the cards , well that was the only excuse needed . I witnessed people trying to storm the ring , then sporadic fighting breaking out inside and outside the arena , in fact after the event I said unfairly

“I will never attend an event in Manchester again”

Fast forward a few months and it was time to go see Ricky Burns take on Julius Indongo in the SSE Hydro in Glasgow . Just as people are getting seated and ready for the main event we see  a mass brawl kick off at the other side of the arena ,which seemed to last for a while with security struggling to get to the culprits. I learned afterwards that Tommy Allen of the Boxing Asylum and his father where caught up in the carnage , with Tommy’s dad being assaulted in the process .

On TV I witnessed boozed up West Ham Casuals start a mini riot at the copperbox on a frank Warren card forcing TV chiefs to pan the camera out to and censor what was happening in the crowd , but in this age of social media there was plenty of footage going round to show what was happening . Even the glamorous WBSS event couldn’t escape the violence, when George Groves took on Jamie Cox the main event was ruined by upwards of 40 men according to Fight Talks Craig Scott , Spencer Fearon also put a video on instagram showing just how wild it got in the crowd  .

What can be done ?
Well the common denominator in all these instances seems to be young lads who have been drinking all day , so is the answer to ban alcohol from event’s  ? . Well I’m not convinced this alone would work as most of these yobs have already been drinking all day and small shows rely on money made from the bar’s . There could maybe be a drink limit system set up with something like 4 drinks MAX at a show , but again i think the affects of this would be limited . For me a major factor is the time in which Main Events actually start , I think bringing main events forward to 8 PM instead of 10.30-11PM would have a massive affect , especially if there was also a drink limit . It’s time for boxing promoters to stop trying to please everyone and make boxing events for boxing fans instead of accommodating football and rugby fans as well . Boxing events are no longer a place to take young fans because of a percentage of this generation’s casual fans who only see these events as a place to drink , they don’t care about the the sport . I would rather have family friendly events that will bring youngsters into the sport for years to come rather than have this quick fix of idiots who are turning real fans away from boxing .
Steven Donnell

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Groves vs Cox : Preview and Prediction (UNCENSORED)

This weekend we will see WBSS Super Middleweight No1 seed and WBA World Champion George Groves take on Jamie Cox to see who will go through to face Chris Eubank Jnr who is already through to the Semi Final .

George Groves (26- 3- 0)

George Groves will be going into the ring on Saturday as a defending World Champion after finally getting his hands on the WBA Strap on his fourth attempt at a World Tittle . Due to George Groves quick witted humour he is a massive fans favourite in the UK , but Groves is a lot more than that . Groves biggest asset is his jab and more specifically the power he generates from the jab and the way in which he works off it , makes him a fantastic offensive boxer . Although Groves has always had these offensive skills he has always struggled to keep calm in the ring , a flaw which probably cost him a win against Carl Froch , but since teaming up with trainer Shane McGuigan , Groves has looked a more mature and all round boxer . There has always been question marks over Groves gas tank which could cause him problems if not in this fight then maybe later on in the WBSS IF he gets through .

Jamie Cox  (24 -0 -0)

Boxing is often called a “Gentlemans Sport”…… well never when Jamie Cox is fighting . I think Cox is little more than a thug in the ring , using elbows, head butts and punches to the back of the head to make up fo his lack of skills . I have personally seen fights where Cox should have been disqualified on three occasions  , saved only by weak refs who after taking a point refused to acknowledge the countless other fouls that took place .Now these fights I’ve seen have not been against any great opposition  , but still we see Cox struggle to understand the meaning of controlled aggression  .  There is not one bit of Cox’s boxing ability that gives Groves any problems so i expect him to try and turn this fight into something you would see in Middlesbrough City Centre on a Saturday night , and if we don’t have a strong ref  this fight could become a farce .

Prediction

Well as you can probably tell i strongly fancy George Groves to win by stoppage around the fifth round , as long as he keeps his head doesn’t get drawn in with Cox’s anamlistic style . I’ve seen Cox be rocked by journeymen so I can’t see him standing up to the power of Groves , i think once he feels that power he will go to sleep …..and there’s nothing better than seeing a bully be put to sleep .

Steven Donnell

 

Boxing Has A Chance To Right A Wrong With Ortiz

So another month passes and boxing has again managed to embarrass itself , yes I’m talking about WBA Champion Luiz Ortiz testing positive for banned substances for a SECOND time in a test conducted by VADA/WBC as he was preparing to take on Deontay Wilder . In this article i hope to show people that this man is not ” Innocent ” or ” A victim ” here , a theory that has gathered some pace on social media .
Ortiz’s Past : 

This is not the first time Luis Ortiz has tested positive for banned substances , back in 2014 Ortiz tested positive for steroids after he fought Lateef Kayode ….now let that sink in , he tested positive for steroids after a fight  , so to put it another way , Ortiz was loading his gloves with muscle illegally to hurt a fellow a pro . Now let me take you back to the Roberto Duran vs Davey Moore undercard where a young prospect Billy Collins jnr fought a very decent gate keeper in Luis Resto . Resto didn’t just stop the youngster he ripped that boy apart only for Collin’s father to notice after the fight tha Resto and his trainer Panama Lewis had took the padding out of Resto’s gloves . Resto went to prison for two and half years and Panama got a lifetime ban from boxing , whilst Billy Collins fell into deep depression and took his own life . So using logic and any sort of moral compass we should expect anybody cheating like this to face a lifetime ban , maybe criminal charges ?  No Ortiz got an 8 month lay off , which is an insult to clean athletes and shows complete disregard for boxers safety. For me it doesn’t matter what side of the glove is loaded , you are going out there to hurt another human being illegally .

Collins vs Resto Full Fight

What did he test positive for this time : 

Now to be fair to Ortiz this time he has NOT tested positive for a PED, instead he has tested positive for chlorothaizide and hydrochlorothiazide , substances that can be used to mask or hide the use of PED’s . Now both of these substances can be found in a lot of different medications and in this case Ortiz claims it is from his  Blood Pressure mdeication and this is all a complete misunderstanding . Nope sorry i don’t buy this , Luis Ortiz is an apparent professional athlete getting ready to fight for the WBC Heavyweight title ,who work in partnership VADA in an attempt to clean up boxing . Knowing what the WBC are trying to do why would Ortiz not declare ALL and ANY medication he had took , especially already being part of “Boxing’s Hall of Shame” , surly he should be extra carful , and for that reason i personally will not give him benefit of the doubt .

What should happen next :

Well boxing has a chance to right a wrong here and kick Ortiz out of the sport for good , now i might hear some say ” that is harsh after all it could be an innocent mistake ” . Well that might be , but a FAIL is a FAIL and we will never know if he is innocent but if we look back to the case in 2014 , he was willing to juice up and hurt someone so can we really afford to take the chance and hope he is telling the truth .I’m with Tony Bellew here who has consistently called for drug cheats to be banned for life . A zero tolerance approach to doping is what boxing needs , the sport has to get serious about getting this cancer cut out . Screen Shot 2017-10-04 at 14.56.37.png

 

 

Just to finish up i think we should spare a thought for Deontay Wilder who again has been let down by a fellow pro . Only last year he went to Russia to fight Povetkin only for the Russian to test positive . This Ortiz fight was his second attempt at legitimising his career and its happened again, another camp paid for , another load of unhappy fans to deal with . Wilders biggest mistake in his career maybe winning that WBC belt due to there clean boxing programme .

Steven Donnell

Linares vs Campbell -Review

Saturday night seen Luke Campbell push Jorge Linares in a way I didn’t think he had in him. The Ex-Olympian really put in a coming of age performance and was unlucky not to bring the titles home.

Linares vs Campbell

From the start as you would expect these two started very tentatively in the first round ,bur even this early you could see the tactics Luke Campbell was going to use to try and and keep the technician Jorge Linares off him . As i said in the preview Luke Cambell has a very good jab to work off , but we could see early that Campbell was also using jab to stop Linares getting close enough to go to work.

In the second round it was a bit of more of the same Jorge looking busy , but Campbell was  doing well  to minimise Linares’s work by good movement and judging distance relatively well ……well that was right to the the off the round when a momentary lapse in Campbell’s concentration let him down . As he was backing off Linares he made the mistake of coming back in a straight line , a mistake a man like Linares will punish given the chance . Linares landed a beautiful lightning quick  combination that sent Campbell to the canvas , although Campbell didn’t look hurt it was a warning for him that mistakes like that , at this level will be punished .

For the next few rounds where much better for Campbell , but without picking up any rounds on 0n my scorecard, but instead of getting his head down after the knockdown , he done the opposite ,Campbell cut out the mistakes and really started to use his jab brilliantly, keeping Linares at bay and really frustrating him as the rounds went buy , after 6 rounds i had 5-1 Linares (plus Knockdown so 6 points up)

Going into round seven and Campbell himself really looked to be growing in confidence . Not only had Campbell stuck to his game plan but he was moving round the ring and following up the jab , landing some nice shots . Jorge Linares was looking more and more frustrated , he just couldn’t get close enough to Campbell to make anything count , and when he was getting close he was being tagged by that Campbell jab . Round eight was more of the same , Campbell was really Starting to enjoy himself in there . I said in the preview that Campbell had never really impressed me since turning pro , well on Saturday he looked like he belonged in there with the best in the division .

Round nine was a close round ,and a round where Linares had changed his tactics . Instead of going for the lightning quick combos , Linares had started landing single shits when inside then getting back out as up until that point Campbell was catching him very regularly . It was a funny round Linares clearly took the early  stages but Campbell had his moments before a decent end to the round for Linares .In round ten we could definitely see Linares’s workrate going up , but Campbell was still in there plodding away with that jab but not as much work coming behind it now. Linares was mixing it up a bit more , but still only looking to land single shots at a time .

Going into the last two rounds Jorge Linares looked to have found a second wind just as Cambell may be starting to feel the pace . Campbell had fought a very well disciplined fight but maybe he was just slowing down ever so slightly which was giving Linares the chance to get inside more regularly , but make no mistake Jorge Linares really needed to up the pace when he did . Going into the final round you could see the respect Linares had for Luke Campbell , both men met in the middle of the ring with raised smiles before going to war for one last round . In the end Campbell went out to try and fight fire with fire , and did have successes in the round but most of the the eye catching stuff came from the champion Linares .

(DjayBoxing Card 7-5 Linares + knockdown 116-113)

So to the score cards we go and after last weeks debacle I’m sure there where a lot of nervous people in that arena Victor Laghlan 113-115 Campbell……Max Deluca 114-113 Linares , Zac Young 115–112 Linares and for me the right man won , god knows where Laghlan got that card from.

Now just before i leave you guys i would like to just say a massive well done to Luke Campbell . The news broke today that his fathert had passed away a couple weeks ago , for that lad to go out there and be that focused and push a guy like Linares to the very limit just shows how strong the lad is mentally .

Steven Donnell

Linares vs Cambell – Preview and Prediction

This weekend any fan of the technical side of boxing will be in for a real treat as Jorge Linares takes on Luke Campbell for the WBA Lightweight , WBC Diamond and Ring Magazine titles in California which will be shown on Sky Sports .

Now any fan of the page will know I am a massive fan of Jorge Linares as Linares is an absolute joy to watch . His speed , quick footwork , volume of punches and power makes him one of the best offensive boxers in the sport today . Linares in his last two fights took Anthony Crolla apart , and everybody knows how tough an opponent Crolla is  . In those fights you seen what Linares does best , using his lighting quick speed and reflexes ,he took Crolla to Skool . I first became aware of Linares when he got up off the canvas to put in a fantastic performance against Kevin Mitchell ,stopping the Englishman after a slow start . As I said Linares is one of the best Offensive boxers in the world , but their are flaws in his game . Anytime we have seen Linares look unsettled and pick L’s is when things get a bit rough and dirty , its also claimed Linares is a bleeder which I don’t really agree with but what I would say is anytime he has bled he doesn’t handle it well .


Luke Campbell is a Gold Medal Olympian who had a very good amateur career , but as is so often the case with good ameaturs I feel he has struggled to utilise his skill set to become a top pro . That being said Luke Campbell is a very compitient boxer , who does move well and has a decent jab to work behind . Since Campbell lost to Mendy the hype behind  him has slowed down a bit , as Mendy took Campbell to a place he never been and Campbell did not handle it well at all . Slowly Luke Cambell has been working back from that loss which has seen Campbell earn this shot at Linares through merit , who knows maybe putting Campbell in with Linares will finally see Campbell step up and fulfil his potential .

prediction :

As you probably already know from reading the above , i can only see this going one way . Jorge Linares is just to good for Luke Cambell and come fight night it will show . I’m not saying Linares is unbeatable what I am saying is Cambell just doesn’t have the skill set to beat him . Campbell’s only hope is to drag Linares into a dog fight and anybody who knows Cambell knows that’s not the kind of fighter he is . I think Linares will stop Cambell anytime after the sixth , the way in which Cambell fights is made for Linares . My advice to anyone who hasn’t seen Jorge Linares box before is to make sure you set a reminder on your TV , it really is a joy to watch this technician at work .

Steven Donnell

 

 

 

Sweet and Sour ….GGG vs Canelo Review

So what a weekend of action and  controversy , yet again it was things outside the ring that stole the show in Las Vegas .

GGG vs Canelo at T-Mobile Arena ,LV

This was the fight that all boxing fans have been dreaming about for the past 2 years and my god it delivered . From the very get go in this fight you could see that these two had styles that would put together and make a fight . Early doors you could feel the tension, and for the first couple of rounds at least the underdog Canelo just looked to be that bit quicker on his feet and to the punch but without landing anything to significant . Canelo definitely looked the more fluent of the two but in the third round that changed , GGG started upping the pace and although i thought Canelo won the round he wasn’t getting a break between exchanges , GGG was certainly making Canelo throw more and testing that gas tank . Into the fourth i had it 2-1 Canelo (scoring on my fourth time watching it due to excessive alcohol consumption) but GGG really started to get the jab going, he also cut the ring off very well stopping Canelo moving ,trapping him on the ropes but instead of opening up , GGG was patient , not giving Canelo a chance to counter any big shots, instead choosing to keep Canelo on the of his jab .

The story was pretty much the same for the next couple of rounds . Now anybody that follows me twitter will see i have a go at Abel Sanchez quite lot , but on Saturday night Sanchez was fantastic, When he was telling GGG to fight for  the full 3 min of a round and to stop letting Canelo have a break on the ropes, his advice was to get Canelo on the ropes and keep him there making him work every second . Going into the seventh round i had it all square, Canelo showing superb work and skill off the ropes in the Sixth but it really was a hard round to score and GGG’s work rate was really starting to have an affect on Canelo . For the next two rounds GGG’s jab just took him to another level , what a weapon to have your disposal and it was making the Mexican have to think constantly .As Canelo was starting to slow down , GGG was finding the mark a lot  more regular with his jab. Canelo on the other hand was looking to load up in rounds seven and eight and apart from a lovely uppercut ,he just didnt have an answer to that GGG jab .

Now the Ninth for me was the most interesting round ,it was like Canelo could see the fight getting away from him and decided to try and turn up it . Coming out at the start Canelo was doing a lot of shoe shinning but again that GGG jab was grinding him down, that was until Canelo timed GGG coming in and caught him with a monster of a overhand right, and to GGG credit he didn’t even blink before charging forward again . This round for me stopped the rot for Canelo but it was very close as GGG jab was a constant factor, so i can see an argument for both winning this round . The tenth was more of the same, Canelo maybe landing flashier shots but that GGG jab was constant throughout the fight .

In the eleventh round Canelo really surprised everyone, he came out like a guy knowing he needed these last two rounds to keep it close, and for the first time in 5 rounds he was outworking GGG , maybe not catching clean but definetly catching the eye . The twelth round was pretty much the same with Canelo knowing he needed the round he came out to take it . What we must say is that Canelo was throwing what he had left at the older GGG , yet GGG looked like he could do another twelve rounds , this man is a machine .

As the fight ends i have GGG winning 7-5 (canelo rounds 2,3,5(sr),11,12)(GGG rounds 1(sr),4,6,7,8,9,10(sr) , this fight was superb, the skill on show was unreal , both showed they are made of something special but GGG’s work rate was Canelos undoing and the diffrence between the two …….So then comes the first scorecard “Byrd scores it 118-110 Canelo” ……Oh my fucking god , the biggest fight in years by two warriors and this happens AGAIN . The other two judges cards (Moretti 115-113 and Trella 114-114 )i don’t really have a problem with , but that Byrd card is down right corruption , there is no other word for it , its an embressment to the sport .

Due to the way this battle ended the fight itself has been forgotten , i think Canelo proved a lot of people wrong as did GGG . I thought maybe age would have caught up with GGG , and in some ways it has but anybody who can fight with that intensity and have that jab can still do great things in this sport . As for Canelo his defence and counter punching was a thing of beauty, also he managed his gas tank well to have enough left for a late flurry , we just didn’t see enough over the twelve rounds for me to give Canelo the win . That 118-110 score card has robbed Canelo of any credit in this fight, it has also robbed the fans who’s paid a lot of money out of any legitmacy in this result . This result will damage Canelo’s reputation and if he doesn’t get back in the ring soon for the rematch i don’t think it will ever recover .

Steven Donnell

GGG vs Canelo – Preview and Prediction

This weekend we have the biggest fight in years when GGG takes on Canelo Alvarez to see who is “The King of the Middleweights” . This fight has been what the promoters call “marinating” for 2 years to long now ,but hey lets not get hung up on that now and just enjoy these two superstars putting on a show which i think is guaranteed to deliver .

What can be said about GGG that hasn’t already been said over the years. Here is a guy who has the best jab in boxing for me, and if HBO are to be believed it is also the most accurate jab in boxing . GGG’s high KO ratio means very rarely do people actually comment on his jab, but come Saturday night this weapon could be the tool that see’s Canelo come unstuck . Another of GGG’s best talents hidden away behind that KO ratio is the way he can cut off the ring, manoeuvring his opponents into a corner until there is nowhere to run ,leaving him free to open you up with his power shots . Galovkin does have flaws tho, as we seen against Danny Jacobs he is willing to let opponents land taking advantage of that granite chin, but eventually that will give out . It also looked against Jacobs as if GGG was that half a step slower, and maybe his hunger and intensity not what it was a couple of years ago .

Saul Canelo Alvarez is the Mexican poster boy and pretty much the biggest star in world boxing . After turning pro at just 16 years old he has alway been tipped for superstardom , but after taking the Vacant WBC Middleweight title by beating Cotto at a catchweight a few years ago ,this GGG fight has been a thorn in his side , aswell as a stain on his legacy up until now . Now Canelo is up at Middleweight , and looks to have filled out in all the right places . Canelo’s main strength is his counter punching, which could very well be tailor made for GGG . The way in which Canelo covers up teams up perfectly with his well timed counters, which could see GGG frustrated and see his cool facade tested .

Prediction: 

I am going to go agaisnt grain here and say Canelo is just going to sneak this fight on the cards . I think Team Canelo have stood there ground and let time take its toll on GGG ever so slightly . If GGG can work Canelo’s body early there is every chance Canelo might very well be stopped , but i think Canelo will counter those shots early and take them off the table . Earlier i said GGG has the best jab in boxing but what i didn’t mention is how Canelo pivots ready to pounce with power on any lazy jabs left out there, it really could be the Kryptonite to that fantastic jab . All in all this fight is going to be one for the history books and for any boxing fan worth there salt , this is a MUST SEE .

Steven Donnell