Convicted Artist Magazine

Feb 24th
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boxing_glovesNow that Ward-Pavlik is off, Pavlik-Chavez Jr. is the most exciting fight at 168lbs.  Nobody in this country is really hoping for Froch rematches with Bute or Kessler.  Ward is sidelined til summer, so this is it.  Let's hope Bob Arum learns his lesson from losing Juanma-Gamboa, and doesn't wait to make this match between two of his biggest draws.  They are both likely one loss away from losing their championship-level status, and would provide an exciting match.  Pavlik is the better fighter overall, but his skin and chin are not as guaranteed as Chavez Jr's.  Also, can Chavez still fight well without a size advantage?  Pavlik also has a way of hurting the unhurtable.  It's a great fight, and there is no sane reason why it should not happen.  That's why it won't.

Speaking of fights that won't happen, I don't think Klitschko-Povetkin will ever come off.  Povetkin's management knows their man has only diminshed while Wladimir has only gotten more dominant.  Their only ace in the hole is that he is one of the last heavyweights to not be embarrased by a Klitschko, so don't be surprised if another "injury" happens.  Povetkin then gives up his belt, and takes some time off.  Enough time, probably, to wait for the brothers to retire.

Speaking of retirement, I am always talking about fighters who should retire, but to be honest, there have been one or two who have retired recently that baffled me.  John Duddy seemed poised to make a lot of money, especially for a limited fighter.  With all the Irish/English fighters competing in the Middleweight top ten, and HBO ok-ing him as an exciting opponent, he may have even lucked into a title shot, but while preparing for his big all-Ireland fight with Andy Lee, he suddenly walked away.  His health is what matters, and they have a different attitude about retiring over there, but it would have been nice to see an action fighter like him cash out.

Speaking of cashing out at 160lbs, Sergio Martinez deserves an easier touch than Martin Murray for his homecoming defense.  No rest for Maravilla, as he takes on another unbeaten Brit that everyone is avoiding.  He is doing a good job at making the rest of the division look like soft cowards, especially Golovkin who is following up his recent heat, by taking on a 154lb journeyman who had a good year.  Geale gave up a belt to take on overrated Anthony Mundine in a meaningless rematch, instead of a unification.  Maravilla is the goods, but we already knew that.  Take a soft touch in April, and let these other chumps fight it out.

Speaking of fighting it out, the Light Heavyweight division needs a unification tournament in the worst way.  Shumenov and Cloud have become illegitimate jokes who fight once a year.  Campillo is just as inactive, but at least fights good opponents, and beats them, even if he cannot convince bought judges of this.  Pascal and Erdei don't fight at all, period!  Dawson is coming off a dominant loss, and Cleverly is the only active belt holder.  This is easy for him, because he fights nobodies exclusively.  An 8-man, 4 fights a year tourney would do very well, as most are action fighters, and Dawson can regenerate interest in himself, should he still stand alone at the end of it.

Chris Strait


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