The “Super fight” Bradley vs. Alexander - Say What You Will
By Mike Samuels (Feb 2, 2011) Doghouse Boxing (Photo © German Villasenor, Doghouse Boxing)
Say what you will about the uneventful “Super fight” between Devon Alexander and Timothy Bradley.

Did the fight live up to expectations?

Not if you were expecting the reincarnation of Hagler-Hearns.

Did Timothy Bradley intentionally head butt Alexander?

Perhaps he did. Or maybe it was simply a clash of styles – you know the type that happens when you pit a southpaw in the ring with a conventional fighter.

Many people have dubbed Timothy Bradley Evander Holyfield, Jr. Hell, I don’t know many people who would argue with a resume as legit as The Real Deal’s.

The speculation and opinion of various writers, fans and media members can go wild with agenda ridden points of view. But despite all the so-called disappointment and controversy involved in Alexander-Bradley, one thing – days after the bout took place in Pontiac, Michigan – is still crystal clear.

Devon Alexander quit.

I don’t have a shred of proof to validate the claim or make it appear any stronger than the one’s above that I have questioned and labeled as debatable. If that discredits my credibility as a journalist or a columnist, or downgrades me to the ‘blogosphere’ level of sports writing, so be it.

I was there live and I know what I saw.

Devon Alexander was unable to hit Tim Bradley with any consistency all night. The St. Louis native – the guy I picked to dethrone “Desert Storm” – reminded me of an amateur fighter as he circled around the ring pumping a jab and throwing a predictable one-two combination with seldom urgency.

Alexander wilted under the constant pressure of Bradley. The barrage of head butts throughout the fight did not help matters – in fact, they gave the young 23-year-old the out he needed to walk away from the fight without looking like a quitter.

Forget all that talk from Kevin Cunningham about Alexander having as much heart as Tim Bradley or the notion that Alexander would need to be carried out on a stretcher before he submitted to Timothy Bradley in the ring.

All that nonsense provided media outlets nothing more than a great sound bite.

In reality it only took a couple of cuts – the smaller of the two, at that – and probably a dozen stitches for Devon Alexander to waive the white flag and begin a career as a protester for all the injustice a head butt can cause a rising prospect.

Head butts are truth serum for young fighters.

Alexander can be disappointed with the outcome of the bout, as he told HBO’s Larry Merchant immediately after the fight. A lot of fighters are disappointed with the outcomes of fights they come up short on. You can’t blame a kid who puts his blood, sweat and tears into training for being a bit unsatisfied with failing to reach his goal in the biggest fight of his young career.

But if Alexander wants to truly be “great” he needs to learn from this fight and the first step towards that is to be disappointed with his performance, not simply the fact he did not win the fight. Blame Timothy Bradley’s noggin all you want, the truth is Alexander’s game plan did not work to the efficiently he and trainer Kevin Cunningham had expected. When the water gets murky adjustments are needed.

Alexander failed to adjust. The kid’s inability to go to plan B – not Timothy Bradley’s head --cost him the fight and a chance against Amir Khan in the very near future.

The head butt was a convenient excuse, the same type of thing you hear when a fighter tells you he over trained or had personal issues prior to a losing effort in the squared circle.

Devon Alexander is a good kid with a chance to be a special fighter. Kevin Cunningham has been with him long enough to know this – he’s been there in the gym for hours on end enough to see something special in his eyes. Unlike most people within the boxing legion, I’m not writing this kid off. I believe he can rebound, make the necessary adjustments to be remembered a solid pro, instead of simply a standout amateur fighter.

It all starts with Devon Alexander the man. It’s gut-check time. Whatever happens with Alexander from this point forward will be a direct result in how he chooses to handle his first professional defeat.

I believe he can do it. Regardless, Tim Bradley deserves full credit for the biggest win of his career. He earned it – every second of every round until the bout was halted. It is his to cherish and anyone who tries to find a way to discredit the California native should look in the mirror themselves, because perhaps Alexander isn’t the only person who needs a gut-check.


The Pontiac Silverdome will never be confused with the MGM Grand, but over 6,000 fans were in attendance for the first Super fight of 2011 and I can’t say anything negative about the atmosphere. The place was electric and filled with a lot of hard working blue collar people who never would be given an opportunity to witness such a big named fight staged at a casino.

Detroit native and home town hero Vernon “Ice Man” Paris won a highly controversial decision over late replacement Emmanuel Augustus. No surprise for Augustus I’m sure. But the fact the referee took 3 points away from the veteran gatekeeper only to see the home town fighter booed out of the stadium at the official announcement should tell you all you need to know on who won the fight. Reportedly Augustus will call it a career. Should this be the case, I applaud the man for making the most out of his abilities.

Questions / comments? E-mail Mike at

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