Knockout Nation: Holyfield’s Foreclosure? Williams’ Payback! Lopez Stunner! Mayweather Retires… Again? Pavlik Routs Lockett! Mora Upsets Forrest; Remember The G-Man

 

Williams

Destroys Quintana in One

 

Paul

Williams had a point to prove this past Saturday, June 7. In the wake of

his first professional loss to Carlos

Quintana, Williams has been called an overrated, defenseless, light

punching welterweight.

 

As he gingerly walked to the ring, this time

accompanied by James Brown’s “The Big Payback,” Paul Williams knew this

performance would determine the difference between potential future

superstardom and relative obscurity.

 

It only took two minutes and 15 seconds for Williams

to solidify his future. Showing great accuracy and power, Paul Williams overwhelmed

Carlos Quintana for a TKO stoppage in round one.

 

The bout began with Quintana looking to pick up

from the last fight. He feinted well early in the round and was able to catch

Williams with a few sneaky right hooks and straight lefts. However, this time

Williams utilized his height and didn’t laboriously follow Quintana around the

ring. The Punisher kept Quintana at the end of this jab, and forced his smaller

opponent to leap forward, giving Williams the openings he needed to fire back.

 

The best opening came at the 1:33 mark, as

Williams followed up a stiff jab with a hard straight left. The shot smashed

into the side of Quintana’s head, and the Puerto Rican champion was stunned

badly by the punch. Quintana immediately attempted to hold, but Williams showed

great presence of mind to take a step back and rain down short hooks on the

inside that further wobbled the already unsteady legs of the champion.

 

Realizing he was getting chopped up on the inside,

Quintana sought to retreat, but made the mistake of going straight back right

into the range of Williams’ long left hand. With another straight left on the

button, Quintana crumpled to the canvas with 1:18 left in the round.

 

Stumbling to his feet at the count of four, Quintana

raised his hands to show he wasn’t hurt, but the champion was clearly out of it

and just a few precise shots away from going out.

 

Williams kept his distance and again

discombobulated Quintana with another long straight left behind two jabs. The champion

went crashing into the corner. Not done, Williams punished Quintana with more

short hooks in the inside and knocked Quintana to the far side of the ring with

three successive straight lefts. The referee had seen enough, and stopped the

contest as Quintana tackled Williams to avoid more punishment with 0:46 seconds

left in the round.

 With the win, Paul Williams regains his WBO title

and improves his record to 34-1 (25 KOs) while Carlos Quintana falls to 25-2

(19 KOs).

 

This was an awesome win for Paul Williams, and he

completely redeems his name in the welterweight division. Last week I stated he

needed to punch hard and fight tall to win, but I never suspected Williams

could generate that much power behind his shots. Also, Williams was very

patient and did not get flustered when Quintana caught him flush early on. For

one night at least, the Tommy Hearns

comparison made sense.

 

In the post fight interview, Williams stated he

would like to rematch Margarito,

face Cotto, or replace Mayweather against De La Hoya in September. Of course, the De La Hoya fight is

unlikely, but Williams would be a great opponent for the Cotto-Margarito winner

if Money May decides to let this second “retirement” in 2 years stick.

 

Paul

Williams vs. Carlos Quintana II

HBO Highlights

 

Juan Manuel

Lopez Puts Division on Notice after Ponce de Leon Destruction

 

Those who picked slugger Daniel Ponce de Leon over Juan

Manuel Lopez pointed out that the former’s experience, natural strength,

and toughness would be too much for the young challenger.

 

Someone forgot to tell Lopez this theory. With

shocking ease, Juan Manuel Lopez took apart battle tested Daniel Ponce de Leon

to win the WBO Super Bantamweight title with a 1st round TKO.

 

Ponce de Leon started fast, rushing his young

challenger with hard but wild swinging hooks on the inside. Despite being

roughed up early, Lopez remained patient, coolly circling Ponce de Leon and

gauging distance with the jab for his own eventual assaults.

 

Lopez used his opponent’s aggression against him

by freezing Ponce de Leon with a straight left before dropping him with a

compact right hook in the inside. The prideful Ponce de Leon got up immediately

but was badly hurt, evidenced by his hard blinking and jerky movement.

 

Lopez gave Ponce de Leon no distance to recover as

another short right hook knocked the champion into the ropes. Cornered, the

rugged Ponce de Leon began brawling in a desperate attempt to get Lopez off of

him. However, the weakened Ponce de Leon could not compete, and Lopez ended the

evening with another crushing right hook knockdown for a first round stoppage.

 

With the win, Juan Manuel Lopez improves to 22-0

(20 KOs) and picks up the WBO Bantamweight title, while Daniel Ponce de Leon

falls to 34-2 (30 KOs).

 

In a division dominated by the wars between Israel Vazquez and Rafael Marquez, Juan Manuel Lopez stakes his claim as the best

young fighter in the weight class. Lopez would hold a big advantage over

Marquez (who is not a natural bantamweight), but an Israel Vazquez matchup

would be a 50-50 fight. Keep in mind that we have no idea what either Vazquez

or Marquez have left after three successive brutal fights.

 

Pavlik

Breezes Through First Middleweight Defense

With boxing hard up for American stars and the

UFC  booming, HBO made sure to depict new

middleweight champ Kelly Pavlik as an everyman from the heartland of America.

While promotion is a cornerstone of boxing, Pavlik’s success is built on what

the Youngstown native does in the ring. Pavlik gave us another example this

past Saturday, as he steamrolled Gary

Lockett in three entertaining but mostly one-sided rounds.

 

In round one, both men tested each other by

trading bombs toe to toe. The main difference early on is that Pavlik proved to

be sturdier as he walked through Lockett’s shots and wobbled the challenger

with a cluster of right hand shots to the head and body. Not ready to pack it

in, Lockett temporarily backed Pavlik off with a good left hook to the body to

end the round.

 

Round two saw Pavlik mix up his attack to the head

and body with both hands. After hurting Lockett with a right to the body,

Pavlik crashed home a straight right which forced the challenger to take a

knee. Later in the round, Lockett succumbed to the power of Pavlik’s right hand

again, this time off a counter.

 

By round three, it was just a matter of time.

Lockett gamely pressed forward but Pavlik was not affected by the challenger’s

punching power. Pavlik continued working the right hand to the head and body,

and after Lockett took another knee the bout was called off by Lockett’s

trainer.

 

As expected, Pavlik dominated and has set the

stage for a potential showdown with Joe

Calzaghe. With trainers Enzo Calzaghe

(who trained Gary Lockett for this fight) and Jack Loew already jawing back and forth, this fight is likely

already a done deal.

 

Mora Wins

First Title

 

For years, participants of the reality boxing show

The Contender have had to hear that

they weren’t legitimate top tier fighters. The evidence was in the one sided

losses of Contender stars against fighters like Miguel Cotto, Joe Calzaghe

and Oscar De La Hoya. To many, Sergio Mora’s attempt at a title

against veteran Vernon Forrest was

just another example in a line of many.

 

Count the “Latin Snake” as the exception to the

rule, as he outworked a more skilled opponent in Vernon Forrest to win the WBC

154lb title.

 

Through the first four rounds the action was

sporadic as both men could not find a rhythm against each other. Forrest was

routinely off balance when his right hand missed, while Mora was content to

throw short flurries only when he was hit. Both fighters were booed for

constant mauling, however Forrest held the advantage early due to clean punching.

 

The tide turned in the sixth round after Mora

bullied Forrest with flurries of hooks on the inside, particularly to the body.

Forrest looked uncomfortable and tired as Mora continued working and coming

forward.

 

Mora carried the momentum in the seventh and

eighth, working the body as Forrest appeared listless and was content to

deflect attacks only by holding. His trainer Buddy McGirt implored Forrest to throw punches and reestablish the

jab as the championship rounds loomed.

 

Round nine was big for Mora as both men began

brawling. Mora got the better of the exchanges with his shorter hooks, while

Forrest could not get the leverage he needed with Mora’s head dead in his

chest. At the end of the round, Mora made a point to stare down a completely

dejected Forrest.

 

Mora won the championship rounds, even out jabbing

Forrest in the tenth and eleventh. In the final round Mora played it safe until

the last 20 seconds, where he engaged Forrest and caught a flush right hand for

his trouble. Undeterred, Mora fired back and barked at Forrest “and new

champion!” as the final bell sounded.

 

Scorecards read 115-113, 116-112, and 114-114 for

Mora, who improves to 21-0 (5 KOs). Vernon Forrest falls to 40-3 (29 KOs).      

 

Sergio

Mora claimed before last Saturday that Vernon Forrest was the perfect opponent

for him. Obviously, he saw things that the majority of fight fans didn’t. Many

expected Forrest to control Mora with his jab, but that weapon was non-existent

for this fight. Also, Mora dedicated himself to working the body and that paid

dividends in the later rounds as Forrest’s punches had nothing on them. While

it wasn’t pretty at times, this is a great win for Mora who can now discard the

“Contender fighter” tag.

 

Evander

Holyfield Mansion Set for Foreclosure

 

In unfortunate news, former three time heavyweight

champion Evander Holyfield is set to

lose his home to foreclosure.

 

Legal documents from Fayette County down in

Georgia show that the mansion is set for a July 1 foreclosure.

In Georgia there is no redemption period on foreclosure, which means if the

July 1 sale goes through, Holyfield will not have the chance to come up with

the approximately $644,000 owed payments to save the property.

 

To add on to his troubles, the former champ is

also behind on child support payments to the amount of $6,000 (he has 11 children) as

reported last week in the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. Forbes also reported another pending situation in Utah, where Holyfield apparently owes another $550,000 for loans for landscaping the Atlanta home.

 

For his part, Holyfield informed The Associated Press on June

7 that the property situation has been taken care of, and the home will not be

foreclosed on. The 54, 000 square foot mansion has 109 rooms, 17 bathrooms,

three kitchens and a bowling alley.

 

Floyd

Mayweather Retires…Again

 In an abrupt end to his rematch negotiations with Oscar De La Hoya, Floyd Mayweather announced his second retirement from the world of

boxing on June 6. Below is the letter which was sent to media:

 

Dear Media:

It is with a heavy heart that I write you this message today. I have decided to

permanently retire from boxing. This decision was not an easy one for me to

make as boxing is all I have done since I was a child. However, these past few

years have been extremely difficult for me to find the desire and joy to

continue in the sport.

I have said numerous times and after several of my fights over the past two

years that I might not fight again. At the same time, I loved competing and

winning and also wanted to continue my career for the fans, knowing they were

there for me and enjoyed watching me fight. However, after many sleepless

nights and intense soul-searching I realized I could no longer base my decision

on anything but my own personal happiness, which I no longer could find. So I

have finally made up my mind, spoken to my family, particularly my mother, and

made my decision.

I am sorry I have to leave the sport at this time, knowing I still have my

God-given abilities to succeed and future multi-million dollar paydays ahead,

including the one right around the corner. But there comes a time when money

doesn’t matter. I just can’t do it anymore. I have found a peace with my

decision that I have not felt in a long time.

Finally, I want to personally thank all of my fans for their loyalty and

dedication as my career comes to a close. I always believed that their enthusiasm

and support helped carry me to victory with every fight I ever had.

It was a great joy to have fought for all of you. Now I hope you understand my

decision and wish me well with the rest of my life.

Floyd Mayweather Jr.

 

A few weeks back I compared Mayweather’s antics

towards Cotto with how Sugar Ray Leonard appeared to brush off

Tommy Hearns to build anticipation

for their eventual showdown (Sugar

Ray…Mayweather? ). Little did anyone know that Mayweather would now start

to mimic the countless “retirements” Ray Leonard pulled throughout the 80’s.

              

This retirement may be a negotiating tactic aimed

at forcing De La Hoya to offer more

money for the rematch. There has been a rumor that Mayweather was asking for a

50-50 split. Unfortunately for Mayweather, De La Hoya can make money with

anyone (although not at much), and can also have guaranteed victories against

smaller opponents like Ricky Hatton

or Manny Pacquaio.

 

The second possibility is that Mayweather may be

banking on a Cotto win to ensure a huge money fight early next year. If Cotto

wins decisively against Margarito,

the hype would be insane for Mayweather to come out of “retirement” and face

the new champion.

 

Time will tell the reason. But the fact that there

wasn’t a press conference leads me to believe Mayweather is just playing hardball

at the negotiation table.

 

Throwback

Fighter of the Week: Gerald McClellan

 

There are many “what could have been” stories in

boxing, but none may be as tragic as Gerald

McClellan’s.

 

Trained by Emmanuel

Steward, McClellan tore through the middleweight ranks after suffering two

points losses very early in his career. He picked up his first title by

dismantling John Mugabi in one

round. He went on to score two dominating knockouts over all time pound for

pound puncher Julian Jackson.

 

Moving up to super-middleweight, he faced feared

puncher Nigel Benn in a highly

anticipated showdown. There was much animosity, as McClellan vowed to expose

Benn as another overhyped European fighter.

 

The fight lived up to it’s billing with McClellan

almost winning after knocking Benn through the ropes in the first round.

However, Benn fought back and the contest became more brutal with fouls

(particularly rabbit punching) as the fight wore on. After taking a knee in the

10th following a Benn uppercut, McClellan was blinking hard and

appeared glassy eyed as the ref counted him out.

 

After collapsing in the corner, it was discovered

McClellan had suffered a blood clot on his brain. After regaining consciousness

from a coma, he has suffered brain damage and can no longer see, walk, and is

80% deaf.

 

The bout has scarred Nigel Benn mentally, but

recently he met with McClellan and raised funds to help with his rising medical

expenses.

For those willing to contribute, you can do so at www.geraldmcclellan.com

 

McClellan

Highlights

McClellan

Today

Nigel Benn

Speaking on McClellan

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