Last Saturday night from the Mandalay Bay in the city of sin, Las Vegas, we saw the demise as a title contender of one Zab “Super” Judah from Brooklyn, New York. British sensation Amir “King” Khan needed all of five rounds to complete dismantle the former multi-time title holder in front of 7,000 loyal boxing fans. Khan controlled the action in all of the nearly 15 minutes of action as Judah looked powerless against the younger, bigger and faster Khan. Judah was just able to land twenty punches in nearly five rounds as Khan, led by his new and improved jab, cruised to victory. The end came when in a flurried barrage of punches, Khan landed a body blow on the belt line of Judah’s trunks. As he had done repeatedly in other fights (Tzyu, Cotto, Mayweather, etc, etc), Judah cried foul when one not existed and went down holding his loins. After the ten count by third man in the ring Vic Drakulich, Judah sprung up and began to protest.
Too little, too late.
With the win, Khan takes over the IBF junior welterweight title to go along with his WBA strap. Now the only man standing in his way for total junior welterweight supremacy is the WBO and WBC champ Timothy Bradley. Bradley has not stepped into the ring since earlier this year when he faced Devon Alexander in a dud twelve round contest. Inundated with legal issues concerning his promoter, Bradley is hinting of coming back to boxing by the fall and has stated that Khan is in his sights. In my opinion, this is a must fight at 140 lbs. Both men have stated that they would like to go north to the welterweight division, Bradley to face Pacquiao, Khan to go after Mayweather. I think the boxing Gods will favor Khan to unify the division and become a bona fide star as he has steadily been building up his career and following in as so much to appear on the George Lopez Show after his win over Judah.
With his awkward style and real no promotional machine behind him like Khan has with Golden Boy, Bradley has lost momentum instead of gaining it after his win over Alexander and now mush definitely play second fiddle to Khan in the match up.
I just hope it happens. I don’t see the bout as being all that exciting just because of Bradley’s style of jumping on his opponents like white on rice but it is a must do to add some excitement into boxing.
When was the last time we had a true, complete unified champion in any division?
The War of Words to be Settled Soon… I hope.
The war of words between WBA lightweight champion Brandon Rios and world ranked Mercito “NO Mercy” Gesta has been heating up to the point that only can be resolved inside the ring. The beef began months ago when noted Filipino sports Examiner.com reporter Dennis “D Source” Guillermo asked Rios of Gesta during a training session in Oxnard. Rios made it seem as if he only had vaguely heard of Gesta but made it a point to state that the Filipino southpaw should do what he did and fight himself up to a title shot against him. From then on, the two fighters have taken every opportunity to shoot verbal jabs at each other. From press conferences to online radio shows, the two lightweights have more than shown their desire to face each other in the ring. Now fighting under the same Top Rank banner, it is only a matter of time that his match up comes to fruition.
Rios is coming off his destruction of Urbano Antillon while Gesta stopped journey man Jorge Pimentel in three rounds on the same fight card earlier this month. No dance partner has been announced for Rios for the fall while Gesta is scheduled to fight in September in Tucson, AZ, and then again in November against first real test Ricardo “Pelon” Dominguez on the eve of Manny Pacquiao vs. Juan Manuel Marquez in Las Vegas. If the Mexico vs. Philippines face off is going to happen, I see it for the first quarter of 2012.
Not Done Yet…
It was recently announced that WBC Silver lightweight champ Antonio DeMarco must face former two time strap holder Jorge Linares for the full fledged green and gold belt. Jose Suleiman, President of the World Boxing Council, said that the respective camps had until August 5th to come to an agreement. Inside information is that the DeMarco camp is trying to get the WBC to accept Daniel “Tremendo” Estrada as the opponent. Since DeMarco’s promoter, Gary Shaw, is having television date issues, I think the Tijuana’s fighter camp doesn’t believe they can have the proper support as far as the promotion to go against such a tough opponent. It was also rumored that if the fight against Linares does take place, it might be in Venezuela where Linares is from, giving the challenger home ring advantage.
So who deserves the upper hand?
Linares is linked to Golden Boy Promotions through is Japanese rep Teiken Promotions so they have the deep pockets to persuade the WBC to hold the championship tilt in Venezuela while DeMarco has always represented the WBC, paying sanctioning fees for an interim and now the silver title while Linares has been crowned twice for another body, the WBA. According to Boxrec.com, the bout is scheduled for October 15th at the Prudential Center in New Jersey on the undercard of Bernard Hopkins vs. Chad Dawson.
A quick text to Jorge Marron, DeMarco’s representative, confirmed that the bout has not been signed, sealed or delivered by press time.
In other WBC news, Jose Suleiman stated this past Tuesday that Tijuana’s Erik “Terrible” Morales will face Jorge “Hyena” Barrios of Argentina for the WBC Jr. Welterweight title. Currently, Timothy Bradley is the actual champion but in now common WBC practice, Suleiman has decreed Bradley a “champion in recess” and has called for the Morales-Barrios match up.
Devon Alexander who was the champion until beaten by Bradley has stated that he will move up to the welterweight division and since Bradley has been inactive for more than six months and does not have a date for defending the title, is out of the picture as well as hinting of traveling north to the next division.
An argument can be made for the three time world champion in as many divisions Morales to dispute for the WBC strap. Since coming back after a two and a half year hiatus, he has had a decent run against B level opponents and when stepped up to the world class level versus Marcos Maidana earlier this year, put on a spectacular showing in a losing effort. With a win, Morales will win his fourth title which would make history as the first Mexican born fighter to reach the milestone despite Jorge Arce reaching the feat earlier this year first. Many critics, including Morales, have said that Arce’s run at the four title in as many divisions did not count since one or more of his titles were of the interim variety and not full fledged like the ones won by Julio Cesar Chavez Sr., Juan Manuel Marquez, Marco Antonio Barrera and Morales.
Does Barrios deserve a title shot? Barrios has not fought since October 1st, 2010 when he won a unanimous decision over Wilson Alcorro in Argentina and has ever fought in the jr. welterweight division. If the bout is made, it will take place on the under card of Mayweather-Ortiz in Las Vegas on September 17th.
I can imagine there is plenty of other fighters more deserving of the title shot in the 140 lbs. division than Barrios like the ones actually ranked by the organization in the division such as #5 ranked Kendall Holt, #7 ranked Lucas Matthysse and even #8 ranked Josesito Lopez.
You got to give it to the WBC…