A Very American Coup By Michael – Louis Ingram, Editor-in-Chief...
Another Fruitful Boxing Weekend
IOWA CITY, Ia. – Tim Bradley was put in the spotlight against Edner Cherry after Guzman said no mas to Nate Campbell. Bradley, who gained his title with an upset victory over Junior Witter, put on a boxing clinic.
Foot movement and hand speed befuddled Cherry throughout the fight. There were two occasions that Cherry managed to land his right hand “Cherry bomb” but for the most part, he often hit air with his right as Bradley deftly moved out of range.
Bradley has a bright future and his victory over Witter took him out of the prospect category into the contender category. You can even make the case that Bradley is now one of the top five junior welterweights right behind Ricky Hatton, who has a date with Paul Malignaggi later.
At the age of 25, Bradley rise to the elites of the division was quick for it was just at the beginning of the year, he was fighting on SHOBOX, the next generation but he obviously have grown up fast in the ring.
With speed and excellent defensive skills, he has the tools to compete and he has more pop to his punches than the boxing sensation Paul Malignaggi, who biggest flaw is his lack of power against the top ten of his division.
If Bradley got to show his ware, Nate Campbell found himself with no dance partner when Joan Guzman not only failed to make weight but even refuse to fight Campbell despite a three-pound advantage.
Campbell, who became champion by virtue of an upset over the previously undefeated Juan Diaz, was hoping not just for a good pay day but a victory over a named opponent to make a statement in a overcrowded skilled division.
The lightweight division is a loaded division with Juan Manual Marquez, now the official champ of the division with his knock out win over Joel Casamayor.
Marquez added to his legacy with this victory over the recognized lightweight champion and in a fight that saw both men score heavily, the difference was his right.
Over the past several fights including his recent victory over the undefeated Michael Katsidis; Casamayor showed the sign of aging. Past 35, Casamayor was no longer the great defensive wizard of his youth but he still could hurt an opponent and this was shown against Katsidis, who he stopped in the 10th.
Against Katsidis, Casamayor got nailed with shots that he avoided early in his career but his left saved him. It did not save him against the more experienced Marquez, who as Cliff Rold wrote, “was setting into a surgeon’s rhythm” during the middle of the fight.
Casamayor defended his title with honor but on this night he lost to a great fighter and to father time.Meanwhile, Vernon Forest, whose career have been mired by injury and early double defeats to Ricardo Mayorga, sought revenge against Mora.
Forest’s career was in accendancy when he defeated Shane Mosley twice but those two losses to Mayorga and shoulder injuries curtailed what could have been a great career.
Despite those setbacks, he captured a portion of the junior Middleweight title and appeared to have his career back on track. That is until Sergio Mora upset him in their first title fight. In that fight, Mora outhustled the older Forest to become the first from the Contender series to win a title.
In this fight, Forest fought like the Forest of old, giving Mora a boxing lesson. Mora was aggressive but Forest played matador to bull like rushes of Mora.
Forest won his title back and now has the opportunity to become the man in the division. With Oscar De La Hoya doing his thing with Manny Pacquiao for millions and millions, Forest faces a division that is weak in competition.
There are no giants in the division as the Welterweights and Middleweights have a locked of the major stars in those divisions between 147 and 160.
As for Marquez, his goal is to beat Pacquiao and revenge his lost.
Marquez has proven to be Pacquiao’s toughest opponent and there could be a meeting in 2009 to see who is the best at 135 but for now, Marquez must wait for Pacquiao as he has his own date with destiny.