JZ's Boxing RoundupSince AddictedMMA came onto the scene in early 2011, we have been about one thing, which is obviously MMA. Whether it is North America, the UK, or any place we can get covered, we have strived to cover and report the best from everywhere.
And over this time, we have also dabbled in other aspects of combat sports. NCAA wrestling, BJJ, K1 level kickboxing. Hell, we have even gotten into the movie review game, check out the Boogeyman's "The Expendables 2" review here:
But the one combat sport we haven't covered as much as we probably should have is the one and only "Sweet Science". That's right, the world of professional boxing.
Anyone that knows me knows that as much as I love the world of MMA, it can never compare to the love I have, and will always have, for boxing. For some people, Griffin/Bonnar 1, from the TUF 1 Finale back in 2005, is the highlight of their MMA lives. Others lean toward Rua/Henderson from UFC 139 last year. Many others can fill this list from the thousands and thousands of professional MMA fights we have seen. But for me, the highlight of my combat sports "career" are rounds 1-3 from the Thomas "Hitman" Hearns/ "Marvelous" Marvin Hagler from their epic 1985 match.
I was only 6 or 7 when this match took place, and even thought it only went 3 rounds, with Hagler winning via TKO, it struck a nerve in me that I had never felt before. Up until then, my exposure to "fighting" was WWE, then the WWF, cards on the weekends. Hulk Hogan and Andre the Giant were quickly replaced with names like Hearns, Hagler, Leonard, and Tyson.
Despite many MMA fans feelings towards the state of boxing, which I can't deny has gone downhill since the heydays of the late 80's until the mid 90's, boxing is still going strong with new champions, contenders and promising prospects. Names like Mayweather, Pacquiao, Alvarez, Martinez, and Kahn are well known worldwide now, with many more working their ways towards stardom.
So I would like to take a chance and give some love back to the sport that I have loved since I was a child, and give you some of the best upcoming matches in the sport of boxing on a weekly basis. Some maybe names you know, others names you don't. Some fights may be readily available to watch, and some may take some Google search time. But in the end, if these fights live up to the hype behind them currently, it should be well worth the time to find.
1. Breidis Prescott/Francisco Figueroa, junior welterweight.
Prescott, 25-4, is regarded as one of the heaviest punchers currently in the Jr. Welterweight division. With 20 of his 25 wins coming via knockout, all of which within the first 3 rounds, the Columbian has cemented himself as a formidable challenge for anyone at 140 pounds. His biggest win to date came in 2008, with a 1st round KO win over the then unbeaten Amir Kahn.
Figueroa, 20-4-1, has taken a slightly different route to get to this match then Prescott, spending several years fighting what many boxing fans would call "underwhelming" competition on ESPN and HBO. Never regarded as a power puncher, Figueora has scored 13 KO's over his 10 year career. His most notable match came in 2009 against Randall Bailey, in an IBF title eliminator match. Despite losing to Bailey in the 4th round via KO, the Orlando, Florida native was able to overcome a knockdown in the 1st round and score one of his own in the 2nd.
While this match may not feature 2 of the bigger names in the sport, we should see nothing short then an "in ring" war when 2 men known for their aggressive nature step in to Doubletree Miamimart Hotel in Miami, Florida on August 18th.
2. Robert Stieglitz vs. Arthur Abraham, for Stieglitz's WBO Super Middleweight title.
In a division ruled by fighters such as Andre Ward, Mikkel Kessler and Carl Froch, Stieglitz is the best of the next bunch of 168 pounders.
Sitting with a record of 42-2, the German born champion has always been the man looking in from the outside when it comes to "big" fights in his division, but despite this, has run off 11 straight wins since his 2nd career setback in 2008. Scheduled to fight fellow countryman Mikkel Kessler before Kessler pulled out due to injury, the champion with 6 consecutive WBO Super Middleweight title defenses looks to extend his winning ways and setup the long overdue match with Kessler and possibly end the debate over who is the greatest German boxer in the world.
Abraham, 34-3, has long been a thorn in the side of boxing's best at160 pounds for several years. From 2004 until 2009, the Armenian/German Abraham had 10 successful defenses of the IBO Middleweight title. Following his last title defense in 2009 against Mahir Oral, unsuccessful negotiations in setting up a title unification match with Kelly Pavlik led Abraham to move up to Super Middleweight, 168 pounds, and enter the vaunted Super Six tournament, which featured fighters such as Ward, Kessler, Jermain Taylor and Andre Dirrell. Abraham viciously KO'd Taylor in the 1st round, and despite losses to Dirrell, DQ, and Carl Froch, UD, Abraham bounced back with a win over Stjepan Božić, which was followed by a loss to current #1 168 pounder Andre Ward.
So in a match featuring 1 of the best current and former fighters at, or around, the 168 pound limit, fans should expect another all out war when the 2 men enter the ring August 25th in Berlin, Germany.
Published by Jasyn Zangari - Thu, 16 Aug 2012 19:45