Eric Armit, who is a Director of the CBC and its former Chairman, is renowned worldwide as an authority on boxers records and also as a satirical and cynical observer.
Eric Armit writes in his capacity as a boxing journalist and not as a director of the CBC. His views and comments are his own and have not been the subject of prior discussion or consideration by his fellow directors, nor form official CBC policy.
The news that Manny Pacquiao has been elected to the Philippines Congress has to be good for boxing. Come on Floyd, forget the money, forget the blood tests, what sort of man would turn up the chance of beating-up a politician!
On the downside I am not so sure Manny now needs to fight Floyd for the money. He is a politician-think of the expenses he will be able to claim.
Seriously there is a feeling that having been elected to Congress will make Manny want to continue to fight, as he is determined to better the lot of the poor people in his district, and will use a lot of his own money to do this. Also, he may have his sets even higher than Congressman, and running for a higher office would be very costly.
Bob Arum has indicated that Pacquiao will fight again on November 13, but whether that will be against Mayweather will depend on purse negotiations, the stance on blood testing and the status of defamation law suits taken out by Pacquiao against Mayweather and Golden Boy promotions. There is a long way to go yet.
One decision Manny has made is that his Congressional duties will prevent him attending the “Night of Champions” in Cardiff in July. The Mayweather vs. Mosley fight was a huge financial success. HBO reported 1.4 million buys for the fight giving an income of $78.3 million from TV alone. Mayweather reportedly was on a purse of $40 million plus a percentage of the gate. This is second only to the Mayweather vs. Oscar de La Hoya fight which had 2.45 million buys and $137 million income from TV.
On that basis if Mayweather decided he wanted to enter politics he would not have to contest a seat in the US Congress-he could buy himself a country somewhere.
Still on money. Don King was upset that the former double division world champion Ricardo Mayorga was going to fight on a Mixed Martial Arts show. Don contended that he had Mayorga under contract and wanted to get an injunction to have the show stopped. The judge stated that a bond of $1 million would have to be posted by King. As it was a Saturday you might think that it would be a problem for Don to get the money from a bank. However, Don promptly left the court and returned a short while later with some heavily stuffed bags and posted the $1 million bond in cash! Hopefully next time he asks a fighter to take a cut in their purse they will remember this story.
Amir Khan made a huge impression on his fighting debut in the USA. The reviews were all positive with Amir now a very hot property over the other side of the Atlantic. Malignaggi was not on a steep downward slope, as he was coming off a win over former WBA, WBO & IBF lightweight champion Juan Diaz, a guy who had beaten Michael Katsidis.
There are plenty of choices open to Amir with Tim Bradley, Devon Alexander and Marcos Maidana the obvious choices at light welterweight and Juan Manuel Marquez a possibility- or even Erik Morales. The thing that has changed since the weekend is that Khan looks capable of beating any of them on a good night.
Morales is scheduled to fight the former WBO super featherweight champion Jorge Barrios on July 17 in Tijuana. This will be at light welterweight. The only question mark is whether Barrios will be allowed to leave Argentina as he still has charges against him arising from him leaving the scene after he was involved in a car crash in which a woman died. On the undercard to the Tijuana show Nicaraguan Roman Gonzalez is to defend his WBA strawweight title against Mexican Jesus Silvestre. Silvestre is not currently in the latest WBA top 15 in the division, and yet somehow you just know he will miraculous appearance in the next ones.
Humberto Soto is another who might figure in the future plans for Amir. The WBC lightweight champion has said he will make two more defences at lightweight and then move up to light welter and try to become the first Mexican four division champion.
The WBO were caught with their ratings down. When Daniel Dawson challenged Sergey Dzindziruk for their light middleweight title Dawson had been inactive for 15 month so was not rated in their top 15. However, the show must go on otherwise there is no sanctioning fee, so the regulations get parked.
In a similar vein the fight between Jhonny Gonzalez and Jean Javier Soto was described as being a final eliminator for the WBC featherweight title. Somehow I just don’t think so. Gonzalez was rated No3 and Soto was not in the top 40!
Another announced final eliminator, this one for the IBF strawweight title, is to be between No 4 Tshepo Lefele and No 12 Katsunari Takayama. It’s magic, as the guys from No 5 to No 11 just disappear from sight.
Just a short while ago there were questions asked over the death by suicide of Arturo Gatti and the questions rumble on. Well now the same thing is happening over Edwin Valero. His family refuse to believe that he committed suicide and the body of the former double world champion has now been exhumed. No new autopsy report yet, but the actions of the Police-or inaction-is being questioned.
When Mayweather fought Mosley, Floyd refused to pay the sanctioning fee to the WBA, so he could not win the WBA title. The same thing happened in the Fernando Montiel vs. Hozumi Hasegawa “unification” fight. Montiel was WBO champion and Hasegawa was the WBC champion. However, the Japanese Commission does not allow WBO title fights in Japan (or IBF or any other body, only the WBA and WBC). Therefore no sanctioning fee was paid to the WBO because if Hasegawa had won it would have been meaningless. The problem now may be that a Japanese promoter has options on Montiel. But if he wants him to fight in Japan, then again it can only be for the WBC title. The madness that assaults us!
David Tua’s comeback is going slowly, but with the age of his latest potential opposition you have to move slowly. He did have Bruce Selden (or should that be Seldom now) in his sights, but that fell through. The latest name in the frame is Monte Barrett, who is a mere 38. David, only 37, is serious about his comeback but he is tied into a TV contract with Maori TV, which has two more fight to go. David’s aim is to finish that commitment with a fight against Barrett in the USA, and then take a not too tasking fight back home so that he can then head out as a free agent for the USA for a big money match. Since losing to Chris Byrd back in 2001 David has won twelve fights and has a draw with Hasim Rahman in 2003. With the way that the Klitschko’s have gone through the heavyweight ranks, one good win could see David fighting for the title again and hoping to do better than when he lost on points to Lennox Lewis for the IBF and WBC titles in 2000.
On June 2 in Warragul, Australia, the town will be paying homage to Lionel Rose. The centre piece will be the unveiling of a statue in the town where he was born. The great little Aborigine battler won the world bantamweight title from “Fighting” Harada in Japan in February 1968 and made successful defences against Takao Sakurai, Chucho Castillo and Alan Rudkin, before losing the title to Ruben Olivares in August 1969. He also beat Rocky Gattellari, Joe Medel and Tommaso Galli, went on to win the Australian lightweight title and to challenge for the WBC super-featherweight title. Lionel, who will be 62 in June, was beyond doubt one of the greatest fighters ever produced in Australia.
The trial of the three men accused of involvement in the murder of former double world champion Vernon Forrest is nearing its end. In July last year Vernon stopped at a convenience store just at a time when it was being robbed. The three men were armed, but Vernon pulled out a gun of his own and gave chase to them. Some distance from the store, one of the men, Charman Sinkfield, fired seven or eight times into the back of the champion. Sinkfield has been sentenced to death, and the other two involved are now facing life without parole.