Watchdog Answers on Margarito, Mayweather Jr, De La Hoya, Cotto and more
Watchdog By Steve Hudgins (March 15, 2007) Doghouse Boxing
This week: HBO Boxing at an all time low…Fans are tired of showcase fights…Barrera vs Marquez…Fighters being matched carefully…Margarito, Mayweather, De La Hoya…and much more!

When will the networks force promoters to give us big action fights instead of the hand picked opponents we get every weekend? I think the lack of challenges in the sport is what is killing it. We need more Miranda vs Green & Marquez vs Vasquez and less of that big name guy vs my mail man! – Sugafoot79

You make a good point on HBO and it’s fights but it’s the fighters who are ducking other fighters. – Anonymous

WATCHDOG’S RESPONSE: This is 100 percent HBO’s fault without question. PERIOD. HBO pays to televise fights. They have declined televising many, many fights in the past that they have deemed not worthy of HBO boxing. So why all of a sudden are they paying so much money on horrible fights? Did anyone enjoy Cotto/Urkal, Malignaggi/Cherry or Wlad/Austin? Do you think you’ll enjoy Calzaghe/Manfredo or Taylor vs Mora? The majority answer is a sounding NO! It is very clear to me that Kerry Davis who is the current boxing man at HBO has no clue. Here’s a great example of the decisions being made at HBO right now. Word is that HBO paid 2.5 million to televise Cotto vs Urkal and that they offered 300,000 for Israel Vazquez vs Rafael Marquez. If you don’t want to do the math, they paid over 8 times as much for a showcase mismatch than what they offered for one of the better match ups in boxing today. Do you realize for the 2.5 million they paid for that joke of a fight between Cotto & Urkal, they could have instead given us a Vazquez/Marquez – Miranda/Green doubleheader and have about 1 million dollars left over? And you may think “What do I care if HBO overspends for a fight?” Well folks, HBO Boxing has a budget. That’s 1 million dollars more they’d have to spend on good solid fights…like Arce/Darchinyan, for instance. Instead they have thrown away 1 million of their boxing budget and we have mismatches like Calzaghe/Manfredo & Taylor/Mora to look forward too. If you are a boxing fan and these type of decisions are bothering you, it’s up to you to let HBO hear about it! HBO boxing is at an all time low and if they don’t get their act together soon, boxing is in a world of trouble.

So who do you take for the Barrera v Marquez match? And do you honestly think Arce is ducking Darchinyan? - Joe

I’ll go more in depth about what I think about the Barrera/Marquez match up later this week in my PPV CRITERIA column. For now I’ll just say, I like Barrera by very close decision in a coin flip fight. As for Arce & Darchinyan, I really don’t think either of them is ducking the other, but the longer they both keep facing the soft touch opponents they have been, the more it’s going to give that appearance, and unfortunately, the more likely it is we are going to see fighters get seriously injured. Arce & Darchinyan both need to be fighting each other or the very top opponents in their weight range. Enough of these freakin’ showcase fights! Someone is going to get killed eventually with all this showcase nonsense!

Now all of a sudden it's a shame for Margarito to fight Williams, when everybody was calling him a names for facing Cotto instead of Williams? – Gerardo

Anybody who was calling Margarito names for facing a much more proven Cotto instead of Paul Williams, who by the way has proven absolutely nothing to this point other than having potential, has no idea what they are talking about.

It would appear to me that Oscar had problems with Sugar Shane...and, Floyd's a younger, hyped up version of, 'nuff said. Right? – SM

Interesting point, but I think Mosley & Mayweather are quite different in style. First of all, while Mosley is no huge puncher, I think he does have much more pop than Mayweather does. I also think he has a better chin than Mayweather does. Mayweather fights much better going backwards than Mosley though and I don’t think Mayweather will have any desire to engage De La Hoya as much as Mosley did.

What's going on watchdog? I must weigh in on the Mayweather hating that you constantly do. I'm no band Wagoner. I've followed his whole career you have to admit you would be hard pressed to find a boxer with more skill or ring smarts. He made the linear welterweight champ look like an amateur and still you hate. Every fighter in the game would jump at a chance to fight Oscar, so what's the problem with PBF taking the fight? – E MAJOR

My criticism of Mayweather shouldn’t come across as “bashing”. Look, he’s a great fighter, an excellent boxer and in my opinion one of the best fighters in the world. I, along with many others, are simply sick and tired of him sidestepping the toughest challengers out there and instead facing hand picked opponents that best suit his style. I give him a lot of credit for easily defeating the true champion, Baldomir. And I have zero problem with him facing De La Hoya. Bottom line, Mayweather is really good at talking the talk, but it’s been way too rare of an occasion the past 5 years when he has decided to actually walk the walk.

I think you are so wrong about Cotto ". He’s been matched carefully"…………. "what do all of Cotto’s opponents have in common? You guessed it! Little to no power"………… What's the difference in Cotto being matched carefully and Floyd Jr. hand picking his opponents? I guess Cotto's fight with Quintana was a fluke huh? I think if all goes well with Cotto and he stays busy and out of trouble in and out of the ring, he'll be the pound 4 pound best in the world. Oh by the way, did you see Cintron's last fight? If it was Cotto that night with Cintron, Cotto would have ate him up! – Jose

There is no difference between Cotto being matched carefully and Mayweather or Jermain Taylor being matched carefully. When fighters go a long period of time facing only certain types of fighters…like for instance, fighters with little to no power, it tells me that the fighter and their people all know something that we do not know. In the case of these 3 fighters, It tells me that the fighter and/or their team is worried about chin problems. Cotto has faced Branco, Malignaggi, Quintana & Urkal since his scare against hard hitting Torres. Is it a coincidence that they are all light punchers? No, it’s not. Someone in Cotto’s stable doesn’t want him fighting heavy bangers. Look at Jermain Taylor’s opponents: Bernard Hopkins, Winky Wright, Kassim Ouma, Sergio Mora…what do they have in common? None of them are big punchers. You don’t hear much talk about Taylor facing Miranda or Abraham do you? You know why? Because those 2 guys can punch! And Taylor’s people don’t seem too wild about putting him in there with a puncher. This is purely based on the track record.

Kermit Cintron? The same fighter that cried or took a knee in his Margarito fight? Cotto would destroy Kermy. I know Kermit’s last fight was impressive and he has bounced back well, but put him against MARGARITO or COTTO and he will cry again. – Amil

Don’t get me wrong here. I agree Cotto would defeat Kermit Cintron. I would just rather see Cotto face a big, strong welterweight who can crack, than I would to see him fight a small welterweight coming off of consecutive losses and year long suspension.

Why is Calzaghe running from Mikkel Kessler? Some smart enterprising American promoter should promote that fight here in America! It would be grand, but I think that Kessler is a little bit better then Calzaghe and Joe knows it! – Robert

Kessler is a big strong hard hitting Super Middleweight. That may be why Calzaghe is avoiding him like the black plague with a bird flu chaser. Everyone who hasn’t seen Kessler yet can draw their own conclusions when the #1 rated undefeated Mikkel Kessler faces #5 rated undefeated Librado Andrade on HBO on March 24th. By the way, these are the type of match ups we want to see on HBO, Mr. Davis! And we want to see the winner against Joe Calzaghe! Am I right or am I right?

Floyd is the best pound for pound. He has fought the best and beat the best, who else is left out there? – Anonymous

Hahahahahaha!!!! Someone call 911!...I’m laughing so hard I can’t breath!!! Hahahahaha!!!!

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