A Very American Coup By Michael – Louis Ingram, Editor-in-Chief...
This past week
IOWA CITY, IOWA—Lucas Martin Matthysse is a hard luck fighter for he has lost two very close bouts to Zab Judah and Devon Alexander in their backyard in fights that he could have easily won. The one question, what if both fights were on neutral site? He could have been undefeated and ready to fight Amir Kahn. As it was, he showed that even in defeat, he belongs to the elites of the junior welterweight. Which brings me to another aspect of modern boxing, the number of pundits declared this fight as a do or die for Alexander. There was a time a lost on a fighter record would not end his career or put him in do or die situation. So why would a lost on Alexander’s record against an elite boxer put him on the down side of his career? Even if he had lost last Saturday night, he fought a good fight against a very good fighter. He has yet to be dominated and is only 24 years old, so why declare his career at a crossroads?
The junior welterweights have some very talented fighters and I would love to see a Super Six style tournament in the junior welterweights division. Can you imagine a tournament featuring Marco Maidana, Devon Alexander, Amir Khan, Tim Bradley, Lucas Matthysse, Joan Guzman, Kendall Holt, Mike Alvarado; all young fighters nearing or at their prime. This could produce some super fights. HBO are you listening since you appear to have the rights to these fights.
Next week, a heavyweight fight that actually means something, something that hasn’t occurred since Vitali Klitschko fought Lennox Lewis. David Haye is coming up from the cruiserweight, with quick hands and power against Wladimir Klitschko, a solid technician who has gotten better over the past decade. This fight looks like a rematch of Evander Holyfield vs. Lennox Lewis, a former cruiserweight turn great heavyweight against a bigger great heavyweight.
Both fighters are powerful punchers, Klitschko more so since he has spent most of his career as a heavyweight and Haye has fought mostly over the hill fighters in the heavyweight division including Audley Harrison, John Ruiz and Monte Barrett plus a majority decision over Nikolay Valuev to win the WBA version of the heavyweight division. There is the additional drama that both fighters only losses were knock out losses. So there is possibility that one or the other will end up on the floor. Klitschko advantage is that he fights like the tall fighter that he is and Haye will have hard time penetrating his defenses. Haye can land the one punch that can get him a championship but then he can be hit by Klitschko and Klitschko is trained by Emanuel Stewart, who taught Lennox Lewis to use his height to its utmost advantage. This is one of those fights in which both fighters hate each other and Wladimir Klitschko would love to make Haye pay due to Haye’s trash talk.
I have written about Nick Charles but this past weekend, he passed away. I had opportunities to meet with Nick and occasionally emailed him about boxing. He loved the sports and he fought cancer to its bitter end; leaving a legacy of courage and legacy of great sports casting. Charles was a good father,; good husband and I would suspect that in the end, he would be more proud of those things as he was of a Hall of Fame career. Nick Charles RIP.