Diaz Wins Controversial Decision Over Malignaggi
Hometown fighter Juan Diaz (35-2, 17 KOs) won a competitive albeit controversial decision on Saturday (August 22) against a fired up Paulie Malignaggi (26-3, 5 KOs).
With neither man having knockout power, both fighters had to perfectly execute their gameplans. For Diaz, it was a fight of continuous pressure and letting loose quick, combination hooks on the inside. For Malignaggi, the Brooklynite had to dance, and keep the nicknamed Baby Bull at bay with the jab while occasionally firing the straight right.
In the first round, Paulie was nearly flawless in constantly snapping back Diazs head with his jab. With his legs fresh, Paulie didnt stay inside long and kept his opponents offense to a minimum. Still, Malignaggi suffered an early cut over his left eye.
But in the second, Diaz adjusted and began to punish Paulie on the inside to the body. Malignaggis inside game is weak, and he could do little but try to roll with the punches when Diaz would begin his assaults. In a reversal of the first, Malignaggi was able to cut Diaz over his left eye.
The middle rounds were nip and tuck, with neither fighter letting the other get more than a round of control. When Paulie boxed and kept moving, he kept Diaz off balance and unable to get set to throw punches.
When Diaz cornered him or Malignaggi attempted to rest, Diaz ripped him with hook combinations. Additionally, when Malignaggi got lazy and left his jab out there, Diaz would rattle him with a counter hook.
From the eighth through the eleventh, Malignaggi appeared to take control by regaining his legs and working the jab. Diaz kept coming forward, but his legs were slower and Malignaggi was able to stifle his offense with a hard, sturdy jab. Diazs issues were mounting, as an accidental headbutt now opened up a second cut over Diazs left eye.
In the final round, Diaz went into high gear and pressured Malignaggi. This time, Diaz was able to get inside and score hooks to the body and head. Malignaggi was still working the jab, but he was less accurate than Diaz who landed the cleaner, harder punches.
Scorecards for the bout read a shocking 118-110, 116-112, and 115-113 all for Diaz.
Malignaggi was understandably furious, and conducted a memorable post-fight interview and press conference.
On the undercard, middleweight prospect Danny Jacobs (18-0, 15 KOs) won a clear decision over veteran Ishe Smith (21-4, 9 KOs). And Robert Guerrero (25-1-1, 17 KOs) took a tough decision over Malcolm Klassen (25-5-2, 15 KOs) to win the IBF super featherweight title.
Roy Jones and Hopkins Face Off on the Radio
The 10 year battle of words between Bernard Hopkins and Roy Jones added another chapter when both legends called into Calvin Murphys Houston sports radio show.
Originally, Bernard Hopkins was the guest. However, a fired up Roy Jones called in after Hopkins made several comments about Jones being washed up and facing subpar competition.
I wont do 60-40 (split in your favor) but I will do this, 60% to the winner and 40% to the loser, Jones countered to Hopkins.
Now see I would be playing myself if I did that, Hopkins explained. Because Im the guy that has the gun and hes the rabbit. I dont need Roy to signify my career I can live with beating Tarver, and an undefeated Glen Johnson who were both Roy Jones worst nightmare. I dont have to play second to anyone anymore.
As DMX said hes been eating long enough, stop being greedy. Ive just started to eat the last 3-4 years and aint nobody equal with me. Everyone knows where my heart is, Ill fight anybody. Im fighting these young killers and beating them up easy. If Roy Jones is willing to take 40% to prove he still has his legacy and hes the man, then we can get this thing done before the year is out. If not, then why keep having this soap opera and this damn reality show? Its crazy!
Roy Jones fired back that his legacy is already superior to Hopkins since he holds a win over the former middleweight champion.
Im not interested in going up in legacy in beating Bernard Hopkins. I already have a W by his name on my record, Jones argued. As far as bowing down and taking 40%, thats just an ego play to make me the lesser man. I believe I can win the fight even if he and De La Hoya pick the judges because he cant make a dollar without De La Hoya saying so.
It was an interesting debate, because Hopkins is definitely the bigger draw now and has been facing the greater competition. For Roy to ask for a winner take all contract is almost a slap in the face to Bernard for all the work hes done over the last few years while Jones was rebuilding his career.
But you would think there has to be a compromise somewhere, right?
The whole debate can be listened to here. It starts at 6:41 mark of Part 3. Whose argument do you agree with? Should Bernard go for winner take all, or should Roy take the 40-60% split?
Pavlik-Williams In Jeopardy Over Injury
Just last week, news hit media outlets that Kelly Pavlik and Paul Williams had come to terms to face each other on October 3 in Atlantic City.
Not even a full 24 hours later, the media was hit with more news that bout was now rescheduled to November 21, due to Pavlik suffering from a hand infection.
Amazingly, Williams promoter Dan Goossen found this out from a reporter, and remains non-committal since hes promoting an anticipated Showtime card with his client Andre Ward and Mikkel Kessler.
Because that fight is a part of the Super-middleweight tournament, it makes zero business sense for him to split his audience and promote the Williams-Pavlik fight on the same night.
I would be very interested in finding out who hes fighting [on Nov. 21], Goossen told Yahoo Sports. Weve just learned of Pavliks decision to cancel the press conference and thus the fight, and well evaluate where we go from here.
Pavliks injury is reportedly on the knuckle of his left hand above his middle finger. His promoter Top Rank isnt happy with the news either, as Pavlik allegedly just informed them last Monday, and had not seen a physician for treatment of the infection.
More information will be given as it becomes available, but as of today Paul Williams has not signed off on the proposed November 21 date.
Throwback Fight of the Week: Dick Tiger vs. Gene Fullmer III (August 8, 1963)
Coming into his rubbermatch with rugged brawler Gene Fullmer, middleweight champion Dick Tiger was p#####.
Six months earlier, Fullmer was given a dubious draw over 15 rounds in a fight that Tiger was sure he had won comfortably. Experts offered varying opinions, but most agreed that Tiger had taken his foot of the gas and appeared to sit on his early lead. This incensed Tiger, who vowed to his Nigerian countrymen that he would KO Fullmer and leave no doubts as to who was the best middleweight in the world.
The bout was held at Liberty Stadium in Ibadan, Nigeria, making Tiger the overwhelming favorite. Fullmer, who lost by decision to Tiger in 1962, was coming to the end of a 12 year career that saw him post brutal battles and wins over Hall of Famers Sugar Ray Robinson, Carmen Basilio, and Joey Giardello. But in Tiger, Fullmer had met a fighter that surpassed him in physical strength and could not be bullied on the inside.
From the opening minute of the rubbermatch, Tiger stalked Fullmer and sought to make in a contest of punching power on the inside. Fullmer was forced to give ground, and as a come-forward mauler did not have the skill to box effectively on the backfoot. In the 2nd round, Tiger laid a frightful beating and seemed on the verge of securing an early stoppage.
But Fuller hung tough, and remained upright despite several short hooks snapping his head back and knocking him across the ring.
Tiger had no respect for Fullmers punches, and didnt even bother setting up his attacks with a jab. The Nigerian champ simply waded in and rained down thudding hooks to the body and head of Fullmer, who was now slowing down considerably by the 5th and languishing on the inside.
By the 7th, Fullmers was cut above his right eye, bleeding from a possible broken nose, and had no snap on his punches courtesy of Tigers relentless body attack. Especially lethal was Tigers counter left hook, which found a home on Fullmers face whenever the challenger mounted any offense.
In the corner, Fullmer could not see out of his badly cut eye, and his manager Merv Jensen requested the bout be stopped, awarding Tiger the stoppage victory.
The loss would prove to be Gene Fullers last bout, and he retired with a record of 55-6-3, 24 KOs.
Dick Tiger would hold the middleweight crown until losing the titles to Hall of Famer Emile Griffith in 1966. He would win the light-heavyweight crown before retiring in 1970 with a record of 60-19-3, 27 KOs.