The 2010 K9 Awards: Part Two By Steve Kim, MaxBoxing (Dec 29, 2010) Special to Doghouse Boxing - Tweet
OK, we’ve taken a short hiatus from the proceedings and it’s time to return to the prestigious K9 Awards where we highlight the spectacular, the sublime and the ridiculous that took place the past year in the sport of boxing. So without further ado...
FIGHT OF THE YEAR
1- Antonio Escalante W10 Miguel Roman: Yeah, I know this fight wasn’t for quite the stakes of some of the other memorable bouts in 2010 or possessed their star power or marquee appeal but this fight more than any other had the best back-and-forthing of all the contenders and had great momentum shifts. The gutty Roman simply would not capitulate and fade away from the bigger stronger Escalante, who had to do everything he could to walk away with this decision in this hometown of El Paso, Texas.
2- Juan Manuel Marquez TKO9 Michael Katsidis: This was no Thanksgiving leftover as Marquez was floored early but he showed his class against the courageous Katsidis, who fought on despite the death of his brother prior to this contest. More and more, we are finding out that Marquez is every bit as gritty as he is stylish.
3- Humberto Soto W12 Urbano Antillon: Fans didn’t miss Julio Cesar Chavez Jr. much on this night at the Honda Center in Anaheim as Antillon fought like a man possessed but Soto held off his game challenge with a mixture of guile and toughness. This was as grueling a fight as any that took place this year.
4- Giovanni Segura KO8 Ivan Calderon: Segura would not be denied on this night as he just kept hacking away at the slick Calderon in Puerto Rico with his heavy hands. Calderon did his best but he simply did not have the punch- or the legs anymore- to stay away from Segura.
5- Ricky Burns W12 Rocky Martinez: In a classic match-up of boxer versus puncher, Burns was able to keep Martinez at bay for large segments of the fight but Martinez was always capable of turning the tide- which he did several times during this momentous affair.
6- Amir Khan W12 Marcos Maidana: What was becoming a dominant, one-sided outing for Khan nearly turned into a nightmare in the tenth as Khan was rocked by a right hand from the hard-punching Argentine. But Maidana’s late rally came up just a bit short.
7- John Murray TKO12 Gary Buckland: This fight had grueling inside action throughout that saw the stronger Murray eventually grind down the tough Buckland.
8- Yonnhy Perez Draw 12 Abner Mares: In a fight with great ebb-and-flow, it was Mares early, Perez in the middle and Mares rallying late in what was a tight affair between two world-class bantams.
9-Mikkel Kessler W12 Carl Froch: In what has been the best fight of Showtime’s “Super Six,” Kessler and Froch were nip-and-tuck for 12 tense rounds of action that saw both men have their moments.
10- Daiki Kameda W12 Denkaosan Kaovichit: Kameda gains revenge by outworking the defending champ in a fight that really heated up in the late rounds.
1- Sergio Martinez KO2 Paul Williams: Do I need to even explain?
2- Wladimir Klitschko TKO12 Eddie Chambers: Well, Emanuel Steward wanted Wlad to finish, well, he finished.
3- Audley Harrison TKO12 Michael Sprott: Down on the scorecards, Harrison came up with a bolt of lightning in the final rounds.
4- Dmitry Pirog TKO5 Danny Jacobs: What was supposed to be a coronation instead became a beheading for Jacobs in Las Vegas with a booming right hand.
5- Saul Alvarez KO7 Carlos Baldomir: “Canelo” became the second man in 16 years to stop “Tata” with a lethal left hook at the Staples Center. Up until then, it was a rather dull affair. After the fact, it was a memorable outing.
6- Daniel Ponce de Leon TKO3 Antonio Escalante: As you saw Escalante retreating early on, you just knew this outcome was inevitable.
1- Frank Warren/Main Events (Tie): No matter what anyone says, Warren just keeps developing attractions and prospects in England (now, he always seems to lose them but that's another story) and has a keen eye for talent and matchmaking. Kathy Duva's company is “The Little Engine that Could” in America that keeps churning along with almost no network support and they have something special going on with Tomasz Adamek in Newark.
3- Top Rank: To their credit, the three most attended fight events in the States this year (the two fights at Cowboys Stadium and Yankee Stadium) were under their banner and they have powerhouses like Manny Pacquiao and Miguel Cotto. Top Rank can churn out polished prizefighters as if they came out on an assembly line. Unfortunately, however, they played a large role in Pacquiao-Mayweather not becoming a reality and they became more and more insular in their fights.
4- InterBox/GYM (Tie): InterBox doesn't have the biggest stable or do the most shows but the ones they do, featuring Lucian Bute, have a great atmosphere and energy at the Bell Centre. Yvon Michel's company in the same jurisdiction has had huge success with Jean Pascal and hot prospect David Lemieux and do a more regular schedule of shows. But both outfits have made Quebec one of the leading boxing markets in the world."
6- Golden Boy: Ya’ know, for all the heat they take for their exclusive output deal with HBO, if you look at this year’s activity, they put on pretty good fights across the board for the network. But in 2010, they get downgraded for shoving the Hopkins-Jones II and Mosley-Mora pay-per-views down our throats.
7- Gary Shaw: Not his best year but this guy has always been a fan-friendly promoter. Nothing wrong with that.
THE STEPHEN STRASBURG AWARD (for Prospect of the Year)
1- Miguel Garcia: After a strong finish to 2010, where he easily handled the likes of Cornelius Lock and Olivier Lonchti, he is poised to make a world championship run at featherweight after 24 bouts under the Top Rank umbrella.
2- Mercito Gesta: No, he isn’t the next Manny Pacquiao but this Filipino is southpaw (they all seem to be), fast, strong and exciting. He finished last year with a bang with two knockouts over vets Genaro Trazancos and Ivan Valle.
3- James DeGale: Nine fights in and he’s already the best British super middleweight. This 2008 Olympic gold medalist is more than living up to the promise he came in with.
4- Kell Brook: Brook is a strong-punching guy who promises to be among the most exciting fighters in the sport in the near future.
5- Erislandy Lara: Like many other Cubans, he came in with a huge pedigree and will be moved relatively quickly.
6- Gary Russell Jr.: This highly gifted southpaw has all the tools and skills. He might be the best fighter from the D.C. region since the great Mark “Too Sharp” Johnson. The only fighter that can stop Russell is Russell.
7- Demetrius Andrade: No one doubts his ability or potential but, geez, thus far, he’s been matches softer than Charmin. Even Mr. Whipple agrees.
8- David Lemieux: If this were based solely on box-office appeal, he’d be on top of this list, as he looks to be the next Bute in that region.
9- Carlos Molina: A bit of a dark horse here but as he has settled into lightweight, Molina has shown steady improvement. His quick-fisted style will make for some good scraps in the future.
10- Fernando Guerrero: He continues to draw well in Salisbury, Maryland and get moved up the ladder. Had a tough battle this summer with Ishe Smith, which should serve him well.
HONORABLE MENTION: Roberto Marroquin, Bastie Samir, Joseph Elegele, Jose Benavides, Edwin Rodriguez, Danny Garcia, Shawn Porter, Rico Ramos, Lateef Kayode
THE NEVADA OVER BOISE ST. AWARD (for biggest upset)
1- Jason Litzau W10 Celestino Caballero: A 13-1 ’dog, Litzau proves everyone wrong and gets Caballero out of Arum’s life for good.
2- Lanardo Tyner TKO8 Antwone Smith: In a stunner, Tyner wears down the usually sturdy Smith, who was reportedly ill, beforehand.
3- Carlos Tamara TKO12 Brian Viloria: Did anyone think that Tamara was getting out of the Philippines with that title?
4- Jesse Brinkley W12 Curtis Stevens: Score one for toughness and professionalism over supposed swagger.
THE JAY LENO AT TEN O’CLOCK AWARD (for strangest time slot)
Bob Arum’s midnight conference call on Mayweather deadline: We all knew what was coming- no fight between Mayweather and the “Pac-Man”- but the funny thing is, all of us suckers, uh, I mean, reporters, put aside our Friday night plans to listen to Arum give us the expected news.
THE BUTTERBEAN/MIA ST. JOHN AWARD (for worst pay-per-view undercard)
Pacquiao-Clottey: All you need to know is that Jose Luis Castillo was on it. This was so bad, even fans on the internet streams were demanding their bandwidth back.
THE LEON LETT AWARD (for worst showboating)
Edison Miranda vs. Lucian Bute: One second, Miranda is posing and strutting that he can’t be hurt. The next he is face-first on the canvas from a Bute uppercut. Don Beebe could not have timed it any better.
“IS THAT A PLAYTEX UNDER THERE?” AWARD (for worst tagline)
“Who R U Picking?” for Mayweather-Mosley: Here’s the thing, with Mayweather being a 4-1 favorite, wasn’t most everyone tabbing “Money”? Just sayin’.
THE BIG HAT, NO CATTLE AWARD (for not delivering)
Allan Green: In two fights against Andre Ward and Glen Johnson, Green came in promising dominating performances. He left each time with a lopsided loss and a batch of excuses. Nobody has their dog eat their homework as much as Green.
THE BP OIL SPILL (for messiest clean-up)
Golden Boy suspended by NYSAC for alleged Ali Act violations: It eventually got squared away but seriously, where did the bulk of the money go for the Victor Ortiz-Nate Campbell fight?
THE ROY JONES-MONTELL GRIFFIN I AWARD (for hitting a prone fighter)
Sakio Bika against Jean-Paul Mendy: Mendy was down on the canvas in the first round of their fight. Bika earned a DQ by making sure he was out.
THE WILD WEST AWARD (for anything goes)
Texas licenses Antonio Margarito: Arum and Jerry Jones were both heard screaming, "HOW ‘BOUT DEM COWBOYS?!" as their decision was rendered. And soon, a fight for November 13th was made.
THE ANDREW GOLOTA AWARD (for repeated low-blows)
Anthony Peterson: In his bout with Brandon Rios, Peterson imploded with a series of shots south of the border before getting disqualified.
THE CLAY MATTHEWS AWARD (for best father-son duo)
Wilfredo Vazquez Jr. and Sr.: Yeah, the Chavez clan gets all the credit but Vazquez Jr. is now a major title holder at 122, following in the footsteps of his father, who is overlooked by even diehard fans for his vast achievements in the ring.
THE FRED SANFORD AWARD (for “The Big One”)
Andre Dirrell: So what’s the over/under on his miraculous recovery from his “lingering neurological issues”? April or May? Still, not to be a cynic, I’d like to see his doctor- whoever it was.
THE MIKE WILLIAMS AWARD (for comeback boxer of the year)
1- Glen Johnson: Yeah, he lost but he took Tavoris Cloud to the brink and he was impressive in dispatching Yusaf Mack and Allan Green. Most had written him off after his loss last year to Chad Dawson.
2- Jhonny Gonzalez: His whiskers are always a liability but since losing to Toshiaki Nishioka, he has ripped of an impressive streak of KOs.
THE GROUNDHOG DAY AWARD (for same thing, over and over again)
Ross Greenburg: Every year, he promises a new and improved HBO boxing franchise. Every year, he fails to deliver. Soon, this award will be named after him.
THE 2011 NFL LOCKOUT AWARD (for no action)
October: In this month, both HBO and Showtime decided to not air boxing. Who knew boxing had an off-season?
THE ALBERT HAYNESWORTH AWARD (for worst value)
Andre Berto: Nobody in recent years has gotten more for doing less on HBO than this guy. He received around 900 large for his blowout of the overmatched Freddy Hernandez. I hear even Roy Jones was blushing when he heard that.
THE SISKEL AND EBERT AWARD (for critical reaction)
Larry Merchant: So what was his reaction to Caballero’s outing versus Litzau, when asked by Lou DiBella? Two big thumbs down.
THE JOE CORTEZ AWARD (for being Joe Cortez)
Joe Cortez: Seriously, did he have it out for Maidana during that Khan fight or what?
THE MARLON B. WRIGHT AWARD (for being so wrong)
Marlon B. Wright: He had to be the only one that didn’t realize that Sebastian Demers was knocked out cold by Renan St. Juste (I mean, so cold, he could’ve given his famous long count about five times before Demers got to his senses) but he absolutely insisted- to the shock and amazement of onlookers- on giving the ten-count.
THE FRITZIE ZIVIC AWARD (for fighting dirty)
Luis Lazarte: He was deducted twice for fouls in his bout with Ulises Solis for the IBF light flyweight crown but he really should’ve been disqualified for his incessant rabbit-punches, low-blows and blatant attempts to bite…yes, bite Solis in the third frame. But despite the two deductions, he retained his title on a majority draw.
THE BIZARRO BOB ARUM AWARD (for non-Arum behavior)
Al Haymon: OK, the problem with Arum is that he now seems to only do fights involving his fighters. The problem with Haymon is that he never does fights with his own fighters, which means that any talk of bouts like Berto-Paul Williams is all just wasted breath.
THE “COWBOY” BOB ORTON AWARD (for best suplex)
Randall Bailey: After scoring two early knockdowns of Said Ouali, Bailey seemed to catapult Ouali out of the ring in the third round of their bout. In the ensuing fall, Ouali damaged his shoulder and was unable to continue. The fight was ruled a no-contest (By the way, wasn’t “Pipers Pit” the best?).
THE FRED FLINTSTONE AWARD (for reaction to not getting into his house)