Friday, November 13, 2009

Can Cotto Beat Pacquiao?

Is there a possibility that Cotto will win a 12 rd decision against Manny Pacquiao? Cotto has the skills, with the jab that neutralizes speed and the aggressive counter-punching style style, that has always troubled Pacquiao's open defense and lack of balance. May not be enough to beat Pacquiao, but should be enough to give him a challenging fight.

Cotto has alot: boxing, counter-punching, power, bodywork, footwork and strategy. And a whole lot of heart. Those that think that Cotto is going to fall over like Hatton or give up like de la Hoya either know nothing about boxing and/or nothing about Cotto. Pacquiao, moreover, is over-rated in that Hatton had no defense, de la Hoya was washed-up, and Marquez nearly beat him in 2 out of 3 fights. However, Pacquiao is too strong, fast, and loves to fight. He is one of the most exciting fighters that I've ever seen. And he seems to get better with every fight. But like Prince Hamed, Acelino Freitas, and Nigel Benn, Pacquiao lacks a strong defense--in fact, the defense is below average. And that will be the key if Cotto has any chance.

Also, Cotto is not washed-up simply because he lost to someone who was almost certainly wearing cement gloves. Cotto is obviously a true champion (the heart to take a beating and keep coming forward, and experience against the top opponents in his class) that will endure for many years and titles to come. All he needs to do is avoid Pacquiao's lightning-speed straight combinations (almost impossible to do) and keep his cool and game plan when, not if, he gets rocked.

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Black Eye of the Week

Hector Camacho, Jr. vs. Yory Boy Campas on October 30. And it's going to be on pay-per-view! How long do you think it will be before Yory Boy Campas begins talking with a slur? Or has it started already? Of Campas: when your best days were fifteen years ago and your best days were not good enough then, just retire. For Camacho, Jr.: Nobody but your close relatives cares for your career. Your only half as skilled as your father was and your father's career tanked the first time he felt a real punch--from Edwin Rosario.

Monday, July 13, 2009

Black Eye of the Week

Arthur Abraham, the middle-weight champion, and one of the most complete boxers to come out of Europe, has decided to move up to the super middle weight division because of the inability or lack of initiative of Kelly Pavlik and Felix Sturm to fight him. What a loss for the middle-weight division for what would surely be classic fights. Let's hope that both Carl Froch and Mikkel Kessler are willing to put up their near-perfect records against King Arthur, one of the best fighters in the world.

Monday, June 22, 2009

Yoga for Boxers?

Boxing Friends,

Stretching isn't only for warm-up before a fight or training session, but instead is a training session in itself. Whether you call it stretching, callisthenics, or yoga, this type of exercise is a must so that a boxer becomes a complete and fully-functioning athlete. Yoga, the more complete form of stretching exercises, should be in every boxer's training schedule throughout their career.

A boxer becomes a complete athlete with the help of yoga exercises. The stretches, especially for someone new to yoga, shocks long-forgotten muscles, tendons, and nerves to life. It creates flexibility and the ability to move in a new, more fluid way. And don't let the slow movement and breathing fool you--even the softer forms of yoga are more difficult and strenuous to do than a lot of boxing training exercises such as hitting the focus mitts or jumping rope. And regardless of how experienced one becomes at yoga, there are always new positions to learn and use.

Waking up those nerves, tendons, and muscles makes the boxer stronger by putting those body parts fully into play. Only when the boxer awakens those body parts is he able to use them 100 % for more power, speed, strength and flexibility. Recovery time from injury and damage to the body is also shortened because more of the body is being used to help itself recover. Yoga should be done daily so that the boxer will be able to train harder and longer rather than spend so much time recovering from the daily grind of sparring, mitt, and heavy-bag work.

Yoga also has the added benefit of helping digestion and weight management. Forget about sitting in a sauna to sweat out those extra couple of pounds before a fight -- there are few things that can make a boxer run to the bathroom faster than the reverse triangle position.

Saturday, May 9, 2009

Black Eye of the Week

Boxing fans,

Hector Camacho Sr. fought Yory Boy Camapas tonight. Enough said. Oh, and it was on Pay-Per-View. Now, enough said.

Friday, May 8, 2009

Boxing Experts Fail

Boxing Fans,

So sad that even so-called boxing experts get caught up in the hype of a big fight. Bernard Hopkins and Teddy Atlas , two boxing “experts” that I respect very much for their knowledge, have recently disappointed me with their pre-fight analysis of the Pacquiao-Hatton fight. Although an expert on the basics of boxing, Bernard Hopkins' analysis of the strengths and weaknesses of both fighters had some truth to it, although he picked Hatton to win. Teddy Atlas, however, had both the analysis and pick dead wrong, even though he usually calls fights correctly and gives a thorough analysis before each fight on Friday Night Fights. So why did they get it so wrong?

Bernard Hopkins knew how to analyze the strengths and weakness of Pacquiao and Hatton but still picked the wrong fighter. In his pre-fight analysis he described the match-up as one between a sharp-shooting (correct) counter-punching (correct) strong (correct) Pacquiao and the fast-handed (sort of) newly-trained (wrong) Hatton. He even mentioned that trying to bully Pacquiao would be the wrong move and that Hatton would have to time Pacquiao and have to come in from angles and have to listen to his trainer to learn or re-learn new skills. Those are a lot of have-to's for someone who has not done that in the last twenty years of his boxing career. Maybe Hopkins thought that an old dog can learn new tricks?

Unlike Hopkins, Teddy Atlas had the analysis totally wrong and picked the wrong guy as well. Teddy Atlas came up with the absurd idea that Pacquiao’s mojo had been all but spent in defeating de la Hoya. According to Teddy, Pacquiao’s win over de la Hoya only hurt Pacquiao by not testing himself and having spent all his mental energy preparing for that fight, the biggest yet of his career. Having won the fight, Teddy believed, Pacquiao was set for life career-wise and that there would be no more greatness from Pacquiao. Teddy explained that Pacquiao was not hungry anymore and would be challenged mightily by the British banger and lose a decision. Not once did he mention how or why Hatton would win inside the ring, but left his analysis for this quasi-pseudo scientific mojo nonsense that falls far outside of any rational basic-boxing analysis. He sounded like one of those so-called political expert talking heads that believed with such certainty that McCain was going to wipe the floor with Obama in the elections. Oh well, all hail the Chief and the Filipino master fighter!

I was going to finish off this post by explaining how these two “experts” should have analyzed this fight, but I’ll leave that up to you, the reader, after you've read my previous post on “Styles Make Fights,” part 1 and 2. In the meantime, if your the gambling type, put your money on the boxers that Teddy Atlas and Bernard Hopkins think will lose.

Saturday, May 2, 2009

Black Eye of the Week

Boxing Friends,

Floyd “Money” Mayweather is rumored to be making a come-back against an opponent to be named. Nothing necessarily wrong with that. The black eye, however, is that he plans to make his announcement on the day of the Pacquiao-Hatton fight – and in Las Vegas where the fight and Mayweather’s residence is. Obviously, for Mayweather the more press the better, and where would there be more press than the Pacquiao-Hatton event?

But trying to steal some of the thunder from Pacquiao-Hatton to announce his comeback shows Mayweather’s inability to understand what boxing fans have always wanted to see. Mayweather, unlike Hatton and Pacquiao, is only beginning to realize that making money is not enough to bring about fans’ respect and one’s own place in history. Talented boxers will always make money. Great boxers, however, earn peoples’ respect and admiration with their accomplishments, personalities, and sportsmanship—not their wallets. So while “Money” Mayweather makes his flashy announcement, Pacquiao and Hatton will be preparing to put their titles, reputations, and lives at stake in a masters’ display of speed, power, talent, and willpower. That is what boxing is about. That is what boxing needs. So make your announcement Mayweather and then get out of the way.

Saturday, April 18, 2009

De La Hoya's Retirement?

Boxing Fans,

Apparently Oscar de la Hoya has retired. Maybe it’s real, maybe not. So many boxers retire, only to come back sooner than later and make a fool of themselves. If, however, de la Hoya has truly retired for good, there are many reasons why one should honor what he has done for the sport. De la Hoya’s career is filled with awesome achievements that will leave a lasting legacy in the sport and his retirement, if it sticks, will give him an opportunity to continue to brighten the sport. De la Hoya’s achievements span the whole of his life from his first fight as an amateur to his long successful pro career to his emergence as a promoter. His legacy is grounded firmly in history because of the big fights he had, his sportsmanlike conduct, and his humility as a boxer and as a man. His retirement from the ring and his financial and physical health are an example for all boxers and will allow him to better the sport and, if he chooses, to lobby for a national organization.


Oscar de la Hoya is the most popular and successful boxer of all time. His amateur career, beginning as a child of six years old included hundreds of wins and titles including the Goodwill Games, National Champion, Golden Gloves champion, Junior Olympics, and of course, gold medalist at the 1992 Barcelona Olympics. He fought the best amateur competition in the world for twelve years before he even stepped in to the ring as a professional. His pro career includes titles in six different weight classes against the best opponents in each division for more than 17 years. Exciting wins against opponents like Rafael Ruelas, Fernando Vargas, JC Chavez, and Ike Quartey balance the exciting disappointments of his losses against Mosley, Bernard Hopkins, Trinidad, and Pacquiao. Those wins and losses are something that no one can ever take away from history. Now he can bring that excitement to his role as a promoter, although judging from some of his previous cards, he’s still learning.


De la Hoya’s legacy is firmly grounded in history and is a great example for all young boxers to aspire. De la Hoya fought the best in his seventeen years as a professional. The combined record of his opponents at the time he fought them was 1547 wins, 124 losses and 44 draws – that is, de la Hoya’s opponents had won more than 90 percent of their fights when they met him. Later in his career, de la Hoya did not just have fights, he had classic matchups against the best in his division. Fans will always remember the spectacular knockout of Vargas, the quick destruction of Ruelas, the bloody, emotional battle with Chavez, the blinding speed and power of Mosley and de la Hoya’s close match, the gallant effort against the bigger Hopkins, and the horrible later-rounds fight plan against Trinidad. His uncharacteristic loss against Pacquiao should do nothing to diminish his career but serve as an example that a boxer should leave the sport before that happens. De la Hoya’s humility and sportsman-like conduct was a breath of fresh air for a sport that was degenerating into WWE and UFC type nonsense, bragging, and idiotic remarks and actions from boxers such as Tyson, Mayorga, Vargas and Prince Hamed. His usual response to nonsense was that he did his talking in the ring, which he always did. And unlike Tyson and Roy Jones, he thankfully avoided referring to himself in the third person. The only qualm I have is that he, at one time, thought that his skills as a boxer would transfer over to his singing career! Well, I never said he was perfect.


Will de la Hoya remain retired and what will he do if he does? De la Hoya has apparently retired with a boatload of money, his health, and a career as a big-time promoter. With his money, prestige, and seeming intelligence he can do much to bring positive attention to the sport. No doubt that boxing has suffered and many claim that it is at death’s door, but they have been saying this for decades. A person like de la Hoya and his clout can create matches and events to rival the great fights of the 1950’s (think Ike Williams v. Beau Jack, Kid Gavilan v. Carmen Basilio, Sugar Ray Robinson v. Gene Fullmer), mid 70’s (Ali v. Frazier, Foreman v. anyone, Monzon v. Griffith) and early 80’s (Leonard, Duran, Hearns, Hagler, Curry, Arguello, Pryor, etc.). He can also lobby and use his influence to create one national organization like the NBA or MLB so that there is only one champion per weight class, more transparency, and better protection for fighters after they retire. That, however, maybe asking for too much. Adios de la Hoya and thank you for all you’ve done.

Thursday, April 2, 2009

The Importance of the Jab

Boxing Friends,

The jab is the most important punch in boxing. Three important factors include proper form, use as an offense tool, and use as defense. The proper form includes keeping both hands held high, stepping with the jab on the ball of the foot, keeping the shoulder level and the chin tucked in and down, and turning the jab to the 4 o’clock position at the last moment. The effective use of the jab for offense controls the opponent, sets up the opponent for power punches and combos, and measures the distance of the opponent for accurate distance and power. The boxer’s effective use of the jab as a defensive tool throws and keeps the opponent off balance, disrupts his timing, and keeps him at a distance if the boxer becomes hurt.

The proper form of the jab is the key to delivering the most effective jab. A boxer must keep his hands high and ready to throw a jab rather than deliver the jab from his waist which takes more time and loses the snap. When ready to throw, the boxer steps with the lead foot, landing on the ball of the foot so that the step is smoother and faster – in line with the punch. What is surprising is how many boxers, even top-rated, throw a jab without the proper stepping. The chin should be tucked under the lead shoulder to protect from the counter punch over the jab. The last split second, however, is the key, when the jab turns inward to the 4 o’clock position. That last split second, if done correctly, gives the jab the majority of its power and snap. Boxing commentators, trainers, and fans constantly gripe about the lack of boxers with great jabs. A return to basics will help with that.

The jab is the boxer’s most effective offensive tool. Using a strong consistent jab puts the boxer in control of the opponent by putting the opponent where the boxer wants him and creates constant pressure, both physically and mentally. Very few things in life are as frustrating as being constantly hit by a jab and being unable to hit back. That fact has caused many boxers, even great ones, to quit . (see Roberto Duran v. Leonard II) The boxer then sets up the opponent for power punches and combos by placing the boxer where he wants him, either in the center off the ring, on the ropes, moving forward, sideways or backwards. During the fight the boxer will notice when it is and in what direction that the opponent is easiest to hit. At the same time, the boxer is measuring the distance of the opponent with the jab so that the power punches and combos land with the best leverage, and therefore, the most power.

Using the jab for defense is often forgotten. The boxer’s jab keeps the opponent off balance by snapping the opponent’s head back and having to constantly change footing and position to avoid this punch. The jab should be constantly thrown but is most effective when the opponent steps. Once off balance, the opponent then loses his ability to time the boxer and finds it more difficult, if not impossible, to land a clean strong punch. (see Winky Wright schooling Felix Trinidad with the jab) And if hurt, the boxer uses his strong jab and feints to keep the opponent at a distance. So often a hurt boxer reverts either to going toe-to-toe, running around the ring, or taking a knee, when using a double jab and feints would have been more effective. And of course, keeping the opponent off balance and losing his timing allows the boxer to be more offensive, aggressive, and balanced. Revert to my earlier post to learn about the importance of balance. Basically, if you have balance and your opponent does not, you are already half-way to victory. So practice, focus, and repeat the perfect jab until you get it right. Doing so will always pay off.

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Monday, March 23, 2009

A Consistent Approach to Boxing

Boxing Friends,

Making the most of your boxing career takes a consistent approach to improvement of skills and consistency in weight management. A consistent approach on improving your skills, where there is always room for improvement, demands a return to basics. A consistent approach in weight management requires a change in lifestyle and eating habits so that there will be focus on skill improvement, instead of weight loss, and less wear and tear on the body over time. A consistent approach results in a longer, more successful career and injury avoidance, as demonstrated in the long and successful careers of many fighters.

A continuous improvement of skill is necessary because you are either improving or losing. Despite many boxers that have stopped improving, there is always room to improve the skills one has whether becoming faster, stronger, or more technically skilled. Improvement depends upon a return to the basics of boxing, such as balance, jab training, and defense, as well as improving upon that special skill (killer body attack, big right hand, etc.) that sets them apart from others. Fighters, such as Bernard Hopkins, that focus on improving throughout their careers rather than sitting on their accomplishments, enjoy the results of their behavior. Hopkins could have trained just enough to get him through fights and many would have said that is to be expected of an older fighter. Hopkins, however, has taken consistency to a whole new level, fighting at top form against the best in his division, while former foe Roy Jones hit the wall years ago.

Consistent weight management sets the boxer up for a longer, more successful career. Making weight management a lifestyle change, such as eating properly (more whole foods and greens) and keeping fit throughout the year, as opposed to dieting and binging, helps to keep weight under control and helps avoid the yo-yo weight gain and loss that damages the body. Moreover, the boxer that controls his weight and begins a lifestyle change can then focus his training on improving his skills, endurance, and power.

The results of a consistent approach in skill improvement and weight management add to the success of the boxer's career. The most obvious benefit is length and quality of the boxer’s career by staying ahead of same-age fighters and keeping even with or better than up-and-coming fighters. Also, the boxer experiences lesser injuries due to better health, sharper skills, and stronger body. Two prime examples of the benefits of a consistent approach in skill improvement and weight management are Julio Cesar Chavez Sr., and one of my favorites, the underestimated Harold Brazier.

Julio Cesar Chavez continuously improved his skills and was always in shape, ready to fight. Chavez ended his 22-year career with a record of 107-6-2 with 86 KOs. Throughout his career he was always sharp with his overhand right hands, body attack, and supreme defense that does not come from jumping rope but from dedication to skill, focusing on the basics, and a consistent approach to weight management. Only when age finally caught up with him –and perhaps the rumored hard partying—did his skills begin to diminish. For the first 12 years of his career no more than four months passed between fights, in contrast to the one fight a year of the pampered paper champions nowadays. Then from the age of 33 to 43 he fought on average every six months for the next ten years. That activity plus the continued constant activity fighting and training kept Julio Cesar Chavez in shape and sharp for each and every fight and made him the legend he has become.

Harold Brazier is an even better, though lesser known, example of consistency. After becoming a professional at the age of 32, he fought for the next seventeen years fighting former, future, and wannabe champions, ending his career with a record of 105-18-1 with 64 KOs, averaging almost three fights every two months throughout his career. When most boxers were ending their careers Harold Brazier was starting his, usually keeping a full-time job his whole career! His commitment to improving his skills, focus on the basics of boxing, and constant activity kept him as a top contender for several years fighting Vince Phillips, Pernel l Whitaker, Livingstone Bramble, Juan Martin Coggi, and Roger Mayweather, among many others. A strong clue for his longevity and success is that his first fight was at 138 lbs. and his last, 17 years later, was at 148.

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Sparring Fundamentals

Boxing Students,

Sparring is a fundamental but often undervalued and poorly used tool for trainers and boxers. The purpose of sparring is for the boxer to put the tools together and prepares the boxer mentally and physically for the real thing. Basic sparring should be directed in such a way that the trainer and boxer plans each round and sparring session, reviews each session, and repeats the plan over and over. Sparring in preparation for a fight also involves planning each session and round, in addition to focusing on the upcoming opponent's style and adjusting strategy accordingly, and should become lighter as the fight approaches.
++++JC Chavez and de la Hoya Sparring++++

Boxers spar so often but often undervalue its benefits. Sparring gives the opportunity to improve form, style, balance, along with all other tools, putting it all together, rather than focusing on winning the session or hurting the sparring partner. The boxer becomes prepared mentally by focusing all his effort on his specific plan for the round and the session. Physically, he not only gains endurance and stamina, but with focus on form and style he will set those moves into his muscle memory so that they occur naturally.

Basic sparring --that is, for beginners and experienced boxers not training for a specific fight -- has certain factors that must be met to be most effective. The trainer should have a specific plan for the sparring session as a whole, and for each individual round. For example, the trainer would use a round to have the boxer stay only in the center of the ring, or cut off the ring from a foot-loosed fighter, or even land a certain specific punch a specific amount of times. This is equivalent to a football trainer having the players go over a play again and again. Why not in boxing? Review the session and round during (even pausing the sparring if necessary) and after to make sure that the boxer sticks with the plan and does it correctly. Then repeat the plan again and again until it becomes a habit.

Sparring for a specific fight requires more than basic sparring. Again, the boxer and trainer must have a specific plan for each session and specific round, even more so now because of the limited time leading up to a fight. The boxer must focus on the upcoming opponent's style and the adjustments to be made so that the boxer is most effective against that style. Simply sparring for endurance and even worse, to lose weight, simply doesn't cut it if you want to become a champion or top-level fighter. And as the fight approaches, the sparring should become lighter to rest the body and allow more emphasis on form and defense.

Sparring is serious business and shouldn't be taken lightly. If a trainer does not closely monitor, plan, and review each session bad form not only occurs but eventually becomes set in body and mind and becomes difficult, though not impossible, to change. Lack of planning and monitoring over time leads to the dreaded sparring partner mentality that is impossible to change. So spar right, spar often, and take it seriously.

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Old School Balance

Friends of Boxing,

Power. Speed. Combos. Jabs. People have their ideas of what the key to boxing is. The one factor, however, that is hardly ever mentioned is balance. Balance, though, is not only the key to boxing -- it is the house. With balance, a boxer, like the early Tyson, will have the leverage in his punches and resulting power. A great offense, as Marvelous Marvin Hagler demonstrated, comes from balance and results in the ability to be ever-ready and in position to connect, even against the difficult southpaw. A super defense, JC Chavez style, is born from great balance and results in smooth side-to-side head movement and advanced footwork and counterpunching. All this, however, must begin with basic training and continually monitoring of improvement by the trainer.

Balance creates leverage which creates power. Leverage exists before the punch is thrown and not while the punch is thrown as so many teach. A punch with balance and leverage arrives with the speed, power, and snap so many trainers talk about and so many boxers wish they had. The early Mike Tyson is an example of how balance creates the leverage for awesome power.

Not only does balance form power but also the best offense. The balanced boxer will always be in position to throw a punch or combination regardless of whether moving forward, laterally, backwards, and even when hurt; and especially against a southpaw. The trouble with fighting a southpaw is not the lack of positioning to land punches (the straight right or the left hook over the southpaw's right, etc) but becoming unbalanced, and the resulting inability to land the right hand/left hook and avoid the southpaw's straight left. Hagler demonstrated superb balance and offense against all style of boxers he fought, whether the opponent was a southpaw or even when he, himself, turned southpaw.

Power, leverage, and offense won't mean too much without the expert defense that balance provides. The balanced boxer moves the upper body smoothly side-to-side in avoiding punches and counters with leverage. Then comes the footwork to position oneself for the best angles, power, and to avoid the return punch. JC Chavez Sr., king of defense for almost all of his career, landed his wicked perfect left hook to the body and avoided attacks from long, medium, and short range then continually countered with a right hand over his opponent's jab because of balance.

To end, or better yet, to start, the focus on balance should begin on the first day of training and end only when the boxer retires. If the fighter has not gone through intensive balance training, the trainer must pause all other things and get back to the basics of balance. This training includes making proper stance a habit, drilling on all areas of footwork, and learning to keep centered at all times, whether on offense or defense.

Other balance champions to learn from:
Marvin Hagler
Ricardo "Finito" Lopez
JM Marquez
Reggie Johnson
Bernard Hopkins
Azumah Nelson

Friday, February 20, 2009

Styles Make Fights part 2

Dear Boxing Fans,

Training for a fight is where the focus on styles must take place. A boxer and his trainer must focus on the type of style that the upcoming opponent has and adjust their own style to be most effective. This adjustment must take place in the gym and be hammered into the boxer so that it is second nature. This is in contrast to the way many boxers train in that they either focus on a strategy (eg. working the body more, using the double jab, etc.) or attempt to change their own style 180 degrees, with disastrous and comical results (see de la Hoya v. Trinidad rds. 9-12 or Tyson v. anybody with talent in the last 15 years).

Styles must be adjusted and not changed. All styles have their benefit and their weak points. The key is to understand the opponent's weak point and deliver. The key is also to understand one's weak point and then create a strategy to overcome that deficit. Had de la Hoya understood that his weak point as a puncher (almost a boxer-puncher) is a lack of upperbody movement and adjusted for that, he would not have been hit so cleanly and so often by a boxer-puncher like Mosley --and maybe, just maybe, would have pulled a win in that second fight.

In preparing for a fight, the boxer and trainer must look to his opponent's record and evaluate to whom the opponent has lost and what style that opponent had trouble with. With video all over the web, that is much easier than before. The boxer and trainer must then adjust his style -- more upper body movement, more jabs, early body work, etc. -- to be most effective. Only adjustments, and not style changes, truly work as the body's mechanics tend to change only a little at a time and revert back to what it knows and has done if too large of a change is attempted.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Styles Make Fights Part 1

Dear Friends of Boxing,

There is an adage in boxing that styles make fights. What does this mean? The style that each boxer has in a fight determines the tempo, activity, and even the probable outcome. I use the word "probable" for two reasons. As in any rule, there are exceptions to that rule. Secondly, there are several factors which must come into play before the rule has any consistency to it. I'll get to these factors below.

To better explain styles, I'll use some examples. Winky Wright is the prototypical boxer. Focusing more on defense and counter-punching, with a good jab and good foot movement, boxers can put you asleep, not with their power but with their boring style. Shane Mosley is the prototypical power-boxer. Focusing on power punches, this boxer also has the foot work and speed to get the respect of his opponent and often knock the opponent out in an exciting way. Oscar de la Hoya is the prototypical puncher. Focusing on the power and quality of their power shots these boxers often have less than average defense and basic footwork. Jorge Arce is the typical brawler. Whether or not they have the power or defense to do so, these boxers get in close and bang away until either they or their opponent falls. Obviously there is more to the analysis, but you get the point.

So what style wins over another? For a consistent answer --that is, one that makes sense over time, several factors must first be met. Age and experience must be basically equal (experience more important) as well as activity and preparation. Basically if you are too young or old or inexperienced or inactive or ill-prepared relative to your opponent, styles don't mean as much.

Part 2 of this post to follow soon. Add this blog to your reader.

Learn When to Hang 'Em Up

Appears that Roy Jones and Erik Morales haven't learned the lessons of so many boxers in the past that went one fight too many. Boxers, as other athletes, have physical limitations that affect their reflexes, endurance, and neurology. Adding to these limitations, boxers, unlike other athletes, generally are limited in the amount of mentoring and life coaching they receive during and after their careers.

Roy Jones and Erik Morales no longer have what it takes, physically, to succeed at their profession and will put at risk their short and long-term health. Their reflexes, Jones more notably, are nowhere near what they used to be and are, in fact, mediocre at best. Jones' success was based primarily on his reflexes, while Morales' weight division requires reflexes just to compete. Both boxers' endurance no longer exists at a championship level. Sure, both can finish a fight, and probably even start off strong, but they both lack the endurance that Father Time and years of being pounded on, both in the ring and sparring, has taken. With their lack of reflexes and endurance they will both get hurt in their next fights, if not in the short term, definitely in the long term --resulting in slurred speech, memory loss, and other physical disabilities. George Foreman, unfortunately, was the exception and not the rule.

Does Jones and Morales lack the type of mentoring and life coaching that so many other types of athletes receive? Boxers, not having a national organization, do not always have financial and after-career mentoring as many other athletes. So many boxers --top level-- have retired and died broke. Sugar Ray Robinson comes first to mind. Hopefully, Jones and Morales are not suffering economically and understand there are other ventures that they can put their heart and time into.

So why do so many boxers compete when they should retire? Is it money, fame, identity or some other factor? What a shame it would be to learn that Roy Jones and Erik Morales have run out of money, either through bad investments, bad spending, or thievery by one of their sycophants. And one can only imagine what it feels like to walk into a ring with thousands cheering their name and rooting for them to win. And what a shame it would be for Jones and Morales to see themselves only as boxers and not as the gifted people that they are --people with heart, discipline, and love for a sport that they can contribute to in so many other ways.