DAILY BREAD FRIDAY EDITION
By Stephen "Breadman" Edwards
Whats poppin Bread? Saw you in Shawn Porter's corner in his win vs Alfonso Gomez. Definitely good seeing you working your way onto a bigger stage. He looked good and since you are part of his team I won't ask any training questions. I just would like to see him stay busy and keep taking steps up in comp because he has had a long layoff before his last two fights and hope he can stay at Welterweight for the time being since that sems to be a good weight for him. Here's a couple questions for you:
What do you think of USS Cunningham move to HW and how do you think he can be successful?
What do you make of The Money Team Promotions? They've unsurprisingly signed Gamboa, Dirrell, Dib, Caballero, Berto and Judah and in my view this does alot for African American fighters because hispanic, european and puerto rican fighters seem to get a huge push while AA fighters go through way too much. They seem to be able to reach young black fighters of the hip hop culture and I wouldn't be surprised if they signed Fernando Guerrero, Broner, Kirkland, once their contracts are up.
Welterweight just got deeper with a couple fighters moving up, including Guerrero. Where does he go from his win against Aydin?
Rob J, RVA
Breadís Response: Thanks bro. I think Steve Cunningham has as much will power as anybody I have ever seen. I know heís a little older and undersized but if they match him right he can make some money. Hopefully he gets the Adamek rematch.
I actually think The Money Team Promotions will do well. First off you have to realize that 50 Cents is one of the best business men in the world. They probably already have their infrastructure in place. On top of that he has boxingís cash cow as his best friend. Iím not sure what angle they will take as far as signing young talent or established stars but I think they will do great. They will bring that Hip Hop crowd to boxing regardless of what style the fighter fights. The attraction will be 50. My prediction is they make a lot of noise over the next couple of years.
You said a mouthful about African American fighters. With Al Haymon and J Prince doing great jobs of PUSHING, now 50 cents I believe will take things to a higher level because of his popularity. There is this myth that African American fighters donít sell tickets but itís not entirely true. Cory Spinks and Devon Alexander have sold 10k plus in St. Louis and neither guy is a knockout puncher. Adrien Broner is tearing Cincinnati up. Andre Ward sells out the Oracle in Oakland and he hasnít knocked anybody out in a while. Floyd Mayweather is the top money draw in boxing. What does that tell you? What do they all have in common? They had a PUSH in their hometowns as they were building up. Most promoters donít take the time to build up top black fighters in their communities.
A black kid surely wonít sell at the top level if heís fighting 3000 miles away from his inner city home as heís on the rise. I believe 50 will PUSH accordingly.
What's good, Breadman? Great work on the mailbags and video as usual.
I see that you're pretty high on Adrien Broner. I'm not there yet but I appreciate the way that you defended his lack of major amateur success. You must have read my mind because after the interview with Roy Jones where he said that he had over 300 amateur fights, I have been suspicious of his budding superstardom given that he has no major success to go with all of that amateur experience. To me, if he's fought that many times and he's as good as you and HBO think that he is, than he'd have more amateur trophies and medals in his closet.
Broner is definitely a wonderful finisher with fast hands and accurate punches but he is also feasting on men that he naturally outweighs by 15-20 lbs. At 5'7, he is basically a welterweight beating down featherweights. You can say that Floyd, Oscar, and Shane did the same thing on the way up but 23 fights into their careers, each of them had fought and battered a plus-sized "live dog." Since the fight with Leon, Broner's handlers seem to be keeping him away from the type of dogs that Mayweather had to deal with even in the lower weight classes. Broner needs a Diego Corrales/Phillip N'Dou type of fight in short order to solidify his HBO status or he needs to tone down the mistrel show. I'm not a young boxer on the rise but it has got to be frustrating to see HBO reward Broner more for what he does before and after the fight than for what he does during a fight with top quality opponents.
On the contrary, I am highly impressed with Gary Russell Jr. both in terms of fighting ability and attitude. You said that Broner reminds you of SRL but to me, Russell may be the true second coming. Or at the least, a pint-sized Meldrick Taylor. I personally believe that Gary Russell Jr. has the fastest hands in boxing right now. He is also very circumspect about his fights and always looking to improve upon his prior performance despite the fact that he has either shoe-shined or body-bagged anybody who has gotten in the ring with him. More importantly, he has actually been dominating people who are naturally bigger than him.
For my money's worth, I think Gary Russell Jr. not Adrien Broner is the future of boxing. I know it doesn't have to be one or the other but I think a lot of boxing writers are giving too much attention to the wrong guy. Who do you think Broner needs to fight to gain the respect that Floyd gained after the Corrales fight? Also, how many more fights does GRJ need before he and Gamboa get it on? I think it's a 50-50 fight today and I favor GRJ if he gets two or three more fights under his belt. What say you?
Bernel from NYC
Breadís Response: I am only high on Broner for the level he has been fighting at. Iím keeping this in perspective trust me. You have a point about his amateur resume but sometimes guys just hit their strides during a certain time. Believe it or not Brandon Rios is another guy who turned out really good but wasnít dominating the amateur scene.
Broner does seem to have a size advantage over his opponents. But besides the Escobedo fight where he didnít come in on weight, I am not going to knock him. Here is why. I used to receive an email everyday on how Pacquiao makes BIGGER fighters shrink down to weaken them. Now people will say Broner is shrinking down to be stronger. Iím not saying either point of view is wrong but I canít be on BOTH sides. Iím going to leave it alone. What I do know is sometimes losing loads of weight can indeed harm you and sometimes if you replenish correctly it can help youÖ.
I donít know who will be better between Broner and Russell. Every few years talented fighters come out at the same time and people want to guess who will be better. We had Ray Leonard and Howard Davis. Pernell Whitaker and Meldrick Taylor. Shane Mosley and Floyd Mayweather. Jermaine Taylor and Jeff Lacy. Andre Ward and Andre Direll. Now we have these two young men.
I say boxing is a marathon not a sprint. Letís wait 10 years before we do this. I happen to like both of them, but I think Broner is a little more advanced right now. You may not know this but Russell is the only guy in recent years that got the favor of fighting an 8 rounder on HBO. Russell also was supposed to fight another Cuban Luis Franco in a title eliminator. The fight went to purse bids. For some inexplicable reason Russell pulled out of a winnable fight against an undefeated opponent that would have put him in a great position.
Iím telling you this because sometimes we jump around and praise fighters without knowing what goes on behind the scenes. Both of these young men have received partial treatment. Broner got to fight for a title against an ordinary opponent and has yet to beat a top 3 fighter in his division. Russell is 20-0 and has yet to beat a top 10 fighter in his division and he pulled out of a real fight with a young undefeated tough kid. As of right now both need to show us more.
As for how many fights Russell would need to fight Gamboa. I have no idea, because he didnít fight Luis Franco who is just 11-0 and Franco is regarded as good but not as good as Gamboa or Rigondeaux. I think you just like Russell more which is ok, we all have our picks. But we have to make accurate statements. Russell is short but heís not small. He is very dense. Did you know that Gary Russell was trying to make a fight with Teon Kenndedy who is a 122 pounder at 127lbs. The fight was NOT made over the weight. I am not trying to be sarcastic or overly correct you. Iím just pointing out facts and false perceptions.
I think Russell is a BIG 126 and he will be a 130 pounder within the next year or so. Before anybody thinks Iím bashing Gary Russell let me end my comments I am not, Iím just responding to what you said.. I hope both young men prosper and turn out to be great fighters. And more importantly I hope both young men beat better fighters on HBO to warrant the star treatment they are receiving. Their treatment alone will make people not like them if it doesnít stop pretty soon.
As for whom they should fight. How about matching Gary Russell with Daniel Ponce De Leon. Ponce De Leon made Adrien Broner look human. Ponce De Leon is with Golden Boy. That should be an easy fight to make. If Russell can outperform Broner against Ponce De Leon and build from there he can get proper accolades. As for Broner, Broner is going to run through lightweight. The best fighter at 135 is Miguel Vazquez and he may challenge him slightly. Many people donít know this but Vazquez has never lost at lightweight. His 3 losses have come against Canelo Alvarez twice at welterweight and Tim Bradley at junior welterweight. Other than that, I see Broner dominating lightweight. But fights arenít won on paper. He should create a legacy there before he goes up to 140. Unify the titles and beat the best available guy time after time. If you do that for 2 years, no one can complain.
What's good Bread?
I feel like I've been in a slump because I haven't made the mailbag in awhile but here goes:
First let me say congrats on Shawn Porter's win over Alfonso Gomez. I saw you shouting instructions and it was a good performance against a solid battle-tested vet in Gomez. What were your thoughts on Porter's performance? I was impressed with his ability to remain composed in spite of the headbutts and cuts.
How do you feel about Robert Guerrero's performance? Do you feel like he would be better off at 140 (or even 135)? Its completely understandable to want megafights with Mayweather and Pacquiao but I don't think his performance warranted that. He has talent but in my opinion there is plenty of action at 135-140 (Broner, Gamboa, Garcia, Khan, ect.). How do you think "the Ghost" matches up with the best at lightweight and junior welterweight?
As always I enjoy your mailbag and hope this email makes it
William in West Palm
Breadís Response: Thanks. I was pleased with Shawnís performance. Shawn is loaded with character. I told him in the ring before the opening bell was announced that Gomez was coming to put his life on the line in this fight. I could see it in his eyes. Shawn who is not a street kid of any sort. Looked at me and said ďit is what it isĒ. See Shawn is extremely tough and competitive. Because heís a nice kid who comes out to gospel music people may think heís soft. Heís not. Shawn Porter is ďkillerĒ. I donít throw that term around lightly.
He is progressing and I think if he tweaks a few things he will be world champion. But people on the outside assume he can be taken because he doesnít have the smoothest look to his game. But ask one of his opponents if itís that easy. To a man I assume they will praise the kid.
Again Breadman just want to say that I enjoy your mailbag. The best on
the net. I like it because I don't always agree. Where does Marvin
Hagler rate on your All Time P4P list? To me he was the best of the
late 70's and 80's. He fought a murderous row on the way to the title
and fought all who dared to called his name when he was champ. He
demonstrated how a champ should clean out a division. I remember
watching press conferences and seeing Hagler show up in that Blue Suit
and button fly collar shirt. He was all business.
I am starting to hear talk about Mayweather's next possible dance
partner. I KNOW we will not see a Mayweather v. PAC fight for whatever
reason and whoever fault. I would love to see a Mayweather v Cotto
rematch in the Garden. I am not high on a Mayweather v. Canelo fight.
Don't think Golden Boy will put him in with a counter-puncher,
especially when Canelo is not a high volume puncher. Every mistake
would get exposed and he would pay.
Last thing, who is left in the K2 Heavyweight Division? Is there
anybody left? What is up with Seth Mitchell, can he be next?
Breadís Response: I think Mayweatherís next opponent will have to build himself. Sort of like how Victor Ortiz did with his win over Andre Berto. And how Ricky Hatton did with his KO of Jose Luis Castillo. If somebody around welterweight wins their next fight dramatically that will put them in the Mayweather sweepstakes. Right now I favor Canelo or Cotto to get the fight.
Marvin Hagler is a straight best. He had arguably the best pre title run of the last 40 years. In his prime which is from around 78-82 he was a phenomenal fighter. He was an extremely strong puncher. Very heavy handed. He had excellent stamina, underrated boxing skills and he was quick to the point of attack. Hagler was only about 5í9 which is not tall for a middleweight but he had great length, his arms were extremely long. To top it off he had a bad attitude and a tungsten chin. Probably top 10 chins ever. I say Hagler is somewhere in the range of top 25 to 50 fighters who has ever lived. After the top 10, things get a little murky and itís possible to interchange some of the guys but Hagler is right there in my opinion.
For the record Ring Magaizne had a list of the top 80 fighters of the last 80 years. The list came out a few years ago. Hagler was 17th. Ring also did a list last year of the top 10 fighters of each decade and top 10 since the Ring began in 1922. Hagler was second in the 80ís which along with the 40ís was Ringís most talented decades. He was a helluva fighter and I would assume in head to head match ups, Hagler doesnít get stopped by any middleweight everÖ.
Hagler excels in every area where you rate a fighter. His legacy and longevity meet the criteria. He has that one remarkable victory over another all time great in his fight with Hearns. He is extremely durable and physically strong therefore you donít ever picture him getting blown out by anybody in history around his size. The more I write the higher he goes up the listÖ.
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