Friday, April 11, 2008

The Sweet Science

Ok, I'm trying to be very supportive of my sister's sports blog (The Sixteenth Minute - plug plug). I understand, perhaps, her not following NASCAR or horse racing. But two posts on boxing (about the same fight) since going online in November of last year? Come on, Jack! Boxing is the very pinnacle of athletic competition. Two warriors, face to face, with but the slightest bit of fabric to separate fist from jaw. Now, I don't hold myself out to be an expert in the sport, but this is a very exciting time, for me at least, as an amateur viewer.

Oddly enough, at the same time as I write this, ESPN has just announced that they are not renewing The Contender. Last season (the 3rd) ended with a knockdown, drag-out fight between Jaidon Codrington and Sakio Bika that was considered by many to be one of the best fights of 2007. Other alums of the reality show include Alfonso Gomez (1st season), who is fighting Miguel Cotto tomorrow night for the WBA Welterweight title. K-9 Bundrage (2nd) just decisioned former title holder Kassim Ouma. Brian Vera TKO'd up-and-coming Andy Lee. Steve Forbes (also 2nd) is getting a shot next month against none other than Oscar De La Hoya. Finally, Sergio "The Latin Snake" Mora, season 1 champ, gets his title shot against Vernon Forrest in June. Hopefully, this level of competition from their contestants will demonstrate to another network that this show is worth picking up.

Outside of The Contender, in the "real world" if you will, Antonio Tarver will attempt to unify the IBF and IBO titles tomorrow night. Next weekend, Joe Calzaghe moves up to light heavyweight in an attempt to shut B-Hop's mouth. A tall order for anyone. On May 31, Ruslan Chagaev puts his heavyweight title on the line against the Russian Giant Nikolai Valuev. The following weekend, Kelly Pavlik puts his unified WBO/WBC middleweight title up against Gary Lockett. Finally, in July, Wladimir "Dr. Steelhammer" Klitschko (Chrissy and my personal favorite) has his first mandatory defense of his unified WBO/IBF/IBO title against Tony Thompson. If he is successful, he will then defend against Alexander Povetkin. Hopefully, then he will go on to unify all the heavyweight belts for the first time since Lennox Lewis. Like I said, a very exciting time!


JacquelineC said...

Okay. Let's see: we had Boston College wining the NCAA hockey championship. We had the Celtics, the Sox and the BruinsM playing.

But I'm supposed to have watched boxing or some reality show based on it or derived from it?

You know I love the sweet science! I just can't follow everything.

I'll try to do a post on the boxing matches tonight. Thanks for the plug and the push.

Love you!

Michael said...

You see... I don't follow hockey, basketball or baseball, sooo.... yeah, you should keep up on the boxing. :-)

As it turns out, the welterweight fights on Saturday weren't anything to write home about. Next week, however, you gotta watch Calzaghe take on Hopkins! That is gonna be a good one!