VIDEO: Miguel Cotto open workout in NYC
Miguel Cotto gave the media in attendance a quick workout ahead of his revenge mission against Mexico's Antonio Margarito this weekend.
Showing backward's movement and glimpses of inside fighting, it looks like Cotto will be aiming Margarito's smash and grab style by using range and timing to offset the aggressive, bigger man.
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Vitali Klitschko tables fight offer to Haye
WBC heavyweight champion Vitali Klitschko's team have made Londoner David Haye an offer to fight the for the title next year.
Haye, who publicly announced his retirement in October declared that he would only consider fighting on if a rematch with Wlad or a fight with his older brother was afforded to him.
"Team Klitschko is in negotiations with Haye and has made him an offer. Now the ball is in Haye's court." said the spokesman.
The news pretty much confirms rumblings that Adam Booth has been liaising with various parties such as Sky Sports and Primetime to gauge their interest in the event should it be put together.
Vitali in action against Adamek last month.
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VIDEO: Cotto and Margarito arrive in NYC
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Carl Froch rips Lucian Bute and talks making weight
Carl Froch picked up the phone whilst waiting for his food in Nando's to be delivered to set straight a couple of things he'd read recently on other websites, whereby Jean Beddard the chief of Interbox had made allegations about the Nottingham man's alleged fear of fighting their IBF champion Lucian Bute.
But first he was quick to tell us about his weight and mental state before flying out to America yesterday.
"I'm having the extra spicy chicken. With all the side dishes apart from chips as they are fried - and a big glass of iced water. I've trained really hard this week and my weight is exactly 168lb and I'm eating like a horse still. All good clean grilled meats, rice, vegetables and my NRG vitamin supplements.
Froch always meticulously notes all of his weights, running times, rounds sparred for each of his professional fights.
"My notes say I'm bang on the money for this point in camp with regards my weight, my runs and so on. Infact I've shaved a bit off each stat with every fight in the Super Six. The Olympic team say my body is on an upward trend which is good given my age and underlines what I feel inside - and that I'm getting stronger.
"I put it down to my focus. Having my boy here, my partner Rachael, everything in it's little place to let me concentrate on the task in hand - and that's winning the Super Six in style." said Froch, shovelling some food into his mouth.
Carl then changed the topic to Lucian Bute's promoter. Jean Beddard claimed the current WBC champion was in the "Avoiding a fight with Lucian Bute business" and added that "Business is good".
"Well Jean is half right with that comment," said Froch "in that business is indeed good."
"And from seeing the packed audience at the Bell Center of TV the other week, it would seem the Bute charade is doing good sales too. But what sets both our businesses aside is that the world of boxing respects my endeavours in the fight game but has little respect for their's.
"The reality is that he's feasting on my leftovers while I've battled for the last two years against the very best in the world to get to the final of Super Six tournament. No disrespect to William Joppy and Jesse Brinkley, but they have not achieved what the likes of Jean Pascal, Jermain Taylor, Andre Dirrell, Mikkel Kessler or Arthur Abraham have in this business.
"Me and Bute have three common opponents - Brian Magee who I flattened years ago despite having a broken hand for the domestic title, back when Magee was a lot fresher. Then we have Sergey Tatevosyan who dragged Bute the full twelve rounds. I almost put Sergey through the ropes in two lopsided rounds and retired him. Then we have Glen Johnson.
"Me and Glen had a nice little punch up and everyone enjoyed it. But being honest I was treating it as a formality, because I didn't want to have another war with the final around the corner. But when I saw Bute and Johnson fighting, good grief it was like paint drying. We had Johnson serving up all his weakness to Bute's strengths. He never jumped on Bute, and Bute never jumped on Glen - it was very forgettable indeed. I can't think of one exchange in the whole fight.
I can honestly say I've had more exciting evenings sitting with a pint of water and reading the telephone directory than watching that.
"But to now hear Team Bute almost bragging that their scorecards were better than mine is a bit embarrassing for them if we're all being honest. Bute isn't even the best fighter in Canada and I've already beaten him. I could add that I beat Pascal clearer than Hopkins which was tight, but that's a cheap stunt and you can see straight through it.
Froch, ever willing to poke fun finally added:
"Bute always comes into the ring to "Streets have no name" well they should change the lyrics to "My record has no names".
"Trust me, his team know he is vulnerable and will low-ball all of us, just like they did with Kessler, to keep him wrapped up safe and warm in Canada. If he was legit he'd take his show on the road, but he ain't.
"The Canadians ain't stupid. They know Pascal has been fighting the best and showing a big set of balls, whilst Bute sits at home cashing in. Pascal is ten times the fighter Bute will ever be."
And with that Froch promptly hung up to eat his dinner.
Abraham KO victims Taylor and Dirrell return
Two Arthur Abraham knockout-victims return to action on December 30th at Palm Springs. Both Jermain Taylor and Andre Dirrell were clubbed unconcious by Abraham during the Super Six tournament.
Taylor, who suffered a devastating loss to Abraham during the opening round back in October 2009 has been retired ever since. Also Dirrell, who controversially was knocked out by Abraham in the 11th round back in March 2010.
Jermain Taylor's opponent has now been verified and will face Baltimore man Jessie Nicklow (22-2, 8ko) over 10 rounds in his much-publicised return to middleweight.
Andre Dirrell (19-1) vs Darryl Cunningham (24-2) is also slated for the undercard over 10 rounds. Cunnigham was originally down to fight Pavlik until the 'Ghost' withdrew following money and personal problems.
Cunningham, also a southpaw like Dirrell, has remained undefeated in his last 17 fights and will be a decent test for the super-fast Dirrell.
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GB hopeful Tasha Jonas - Olympic diary
by @TashaJonas (follow on Twitter)
British amateur boxing is currently going through somewhat of golden era. After enjoying almost unprecedented success at the 2008 Olympic Games and claiming four medals at the recent world championships, Britain is quickly developing into a super power of the unpaid ranks. Expectations are high of a large medal haul on home soil and if the squad’s performances in qualification are anything to go by, Team GB seems set to assemble its strongest squad to date. For the first time ever, that squad will include female boxers.
Women’s boxing makes its Olympic bow in 2012 and with just three weight divisions scheduled to take part, competition for places is fierce. Liverpool’s Natasha Jonas is one of three fighters competing for the coveted 60kg spot. The five time English Amateur champion and 2009 European lightweight champion recently returned from the European championships with a Bronze medal in the 64kg category and now, in an exclusive monthly column, takes Livefight.com readers behind the scenes in the run up to London.
I started boxing six years ago and am based out of the Rotunda A.B.C in Liverpool. This year though I’ve made it onto the Olympic podium squad and train full time at the E.I.S in Sheffield alongside the men. I feel like I’ve improved so much. Rob McCracken is our Performance Director and has bought in more professional techniques to our training.
I’m just back from the European Championships in Rotterdam. I got a good draw and fought a Swiss girl (Evelyn Ziegler. W. 1st round stoppage) first. I couldn’t say if she was good or not because it didn’t last that long! I was just so pumped and ready to go that they could have put anybody in there with me. We’d trained so hard and waited so long for it that it was good to get it out of the way.
The quarter final fight was against a Russian girl (Anastasia Bellykova W. Pts. 19:12). She’d beaten me earlier in the year when we went to Russia. I think it was close when we fought there but she got given the decision. I went out with the same intentions as my first fight but she was a bit tougher and more game than the Swiss girl.
The next fight was with the Turkish girl (Guizam Tatar L. Pts. 11:12). We’d been with the Turks at a training camp in Poland the week before the tournament and sparred each other! During the first spar we didn’t really touch one another because knew we’d have each other the next week. She got told off by her coaches for that though, so my coaches told me we had to spar properly. I thought I got the better of her in sparring and when it came to the actual fight, I was winning for the first two rounds. Then I got caught by two silly shots at the end of the third round and that put me behind. She was holding a lot and very clever and experienced.
I was disappointed to lose but if you’d asked me before the tournament if I’d have been happy with a bronze medal then I would have been. Because I’d got that far though and knew I could beat her, to lose was a bit of a smack in the face.
A couple of weeks ago the two other girls in my class, Amanda Coulson and Chantelle Cameron, fought each other in the British championship. You might have seen it on BBC television.
I thought Amanda did well. I don’t think people expected her to win that bout and she’s probably put herself back in contention for the Olympic place. She’s had a couple of bad performances which took her out of the limelight but she’s back in it now I suppose. It got a bit scrappy at times but styles will win you fights and sometimes it’s not about how you win its just about getting the win. As a boxer myself, you love to have a brilliant performance and win but sometimes you perform well and lose. You just have to do whatever you’ve got to do to win.
People are saying the competition is back on between all three of us again but I think Amanda did me a favour by beating Chantelle. It showed that while Chantelle’s a real prospect who trains hard and does exactly the same as us, I don’t think she’s quite ready for these Olympics. That’s just my opinion though.
After competing at 64kg in the Euros, I’ll now be moving back down to 60kg. I start this coming Thursday at the Olympic test event at the Excel Arena in London. Supposedly twelve countries have been invited including Russia and Canada so it’s not gonna be an easy tournament. All I can do is my best.
Until next time!
Here’s a trailer for a documentary following Tasha’s journey:-
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Exclusive: Kevin Mitchell talks Ricky Burns and Rios vs Murray
Livefight.com exclusive interview with Kevin Mitchell
By @ilovetitles (John Evans)
Kevin Mitchell could be excused for being a frustrated man. Having been out of the ring and unable to build on the momentum forged in his thrilling victory over John Murray in July, the Essex man was recently forced to sit back and watch as Scotlands Ricky Burns produced arguably the performance of his career to beat his own conqueror Michael Katsidis.
The days since the fight have seen the man widely acknowledged as Britains best lightweight call out Burns on a couple of occasions. Although it doesn’t take a genius to realise that the all British clash would be big box office and a major coup for Boxnation, official word on the bout has been scant. Livefight.com decided to go right to the source of the talk and get the full story.
The always honest Mitchell doesn’t revert to trash talking in an attempt to build up the fight. He didn’t find that tactic necessary in the build up to his fantastic clash with Murray and chooses to talk about Burns in the same respectful tones. “I was really impressed by him” says Mitchell. “To be fair, how he boxed there was the way you have to to beat Katsidis. That was what I had to do to beat him aswell and I thought he did really well. He fought the right fight”.
Since the bout, although there has been widespread praise for the Scot there have also been a few dissenting voices claiming that the fight was another masterpiece of Frank Warren matchmaking. Katsidis didn’t seem to be quite the same fighter who destroyed Graham Earl and tore up Mitchells own world title dreams. Mitchells isn’t one of those voices. “I wasn’t there to be honest but I’ve seen clips of the fight. People have said that he’s slipped a little bit but take nothing away from Burns though d’you know what I mean? He’s still done his job hasn’t he? He’s gone in there with a tough guy and made easy work of him”.
The prospect of gaining revenge over Katsidis is one which clearly fires up Mitchell, now 32 – 1 (24). Should he emerge successful from an eventual clash with Burns, many fans would fail to see the point in him going back over old ground to avenge his defeat at the hands of the Australian warrior. Would beating Burns prevent the need for a rematch? “No. I still want it. No matter what”.
Although Murray may have a claim should he manage to upset the odds and beat Brandon Rios when the pair meet for Rios’ WBA belt in New York on December 3rd, a clash between Mitchell and Burns would be a battle between Britains premier lightweights. Although Burns is new to the division, the pair are far from strangers and have already shared a ring. “I’ve sparred with Ricky. I’ve done two days sparring with him. To be fair he was a lot fitter than me at the time. I was doing four and six rounds, stuff like that and he did twelve rounds the day I came out of sparring” the 27 year old reveals. “I’d say at that moment in time he got the better of sparring without a doubt. I know what his boxing ability is like and I know that when I’m on form a kid like that wouldn’t live with me but I’ll take nothing away from him. He’s a good lad and a good fighter”.
All very interesting and respectful but just as we’re about to change subject, Mitchell intervenes.
“If people had asked about John Murray v Ricky Burns before I fought Murray, then everybody would have fancied Murray. I went out there and knocked John Murray out in eight rounds but some people still fancy Ricky Burns over me now. It’s one of those things. The fight games very fickle I’d say. Trust me, I wouldn’t be asking for the fight if I didn’t know I could beat him. If you put (Juan Manuel) Marquez to me, I ain’t stupid. I ain’t thick. I know I’d be a little bit out of my depth. If you ask me about Burns though, I’m 100% I’ll beat him”.
It seems like Mitchell may get the chance to back up his claims. Although there has been little talk in the press from official channels, it seems that behind the scenes, discussions are ongoing. “I’ve just finished speaking to Francis Warren and they’re looking at possibly holding it at West Ham football ground again” reveals Mitchell. “Let Ricky defend his title up in Scotland, I’ll fight on a big show down here and then around May, I’d think they’ll be another big fight at West Ham. It’ll mean everything in my heart. It’ll mean everything in me”.
Whilst that fight is something to look forward to, it could still be six months way. In the meantime, boxing fans have another clash to get their teeth into. Mitchell victim Murray was handed a surprise shot at Rios following his first career defeat and whilst he heads into the clash as a big underdog, the pairs respective styles seem guaranteed to produce fireworks. There have been rumours that out of the ring troubles prevented Mitchells name from entering the Rios sweepstakes. The truth is a little different. Firstly, was Mitchell ever offered the fight? “No, not really although I was told that Rios didn’t really wanna fight me” says Mitchell. “My manager said he was looking for a different sort of fight. To be fair, I don’t think Rios is even that good. I think they knew that I could give him all the troubles in the world. I don’t even think he’s a decent brawler. He’s just basic I’d say. He’s square on, you can hurt him and he can be nailed so there’s nothing much there. He would fight me, don’t get me wrong but I don’t think his management team want him around me”.
Had things worked out differently, would the former British super featherweight champion have taken the fight? “Course I would have done for the right money. It’s all about money now. These big fights now are all about money. I’ll fight anyone in my weight class – including Marquez – if the moneys right”.
Whilst many fans are writing off Murray before the first bell rings, the Mancunian can draw inspiration from how his conqueror responded to a first career defeat. Mitchell seems ideally placed to breakdown the match up. “I’ve heard a rumour that he’s gonna go head on with fire. I don’t think John knows any other way to be fair” he says. “I think Brandon will sit on his chest and not let him breathe. I don’t think that’s the best gameplan you could have against Rios”. So, what IS the perfect gameplan for the ultra aggressive Texan? “Like I fought against Murray” Mitchell states confidently. “You’ve gotta mix and match it a bit. You can’t go out there and let him know that every rounds gonna be a war. He’s used to that and that’s what he likes. He’s not a world champion for no reason, that’s what he’s good at. I believe with fighters that you have to take away what they’re good at. You can’t go out there every fight and do the same”.
Mitchell couldn’t ask for any better help when it comes to sitting down to decide what his future opponents are good at. His trainer Jimmy Tibbs, now ably assisted by son Mark, seems to be undergoing something of a career revival. The pair are the men behind Mitchells revival. What is the secret of their success? According to Mitchell, it is a mixture of hard love and tactical nous. “They just get it right! To be fair, they’re brilliant to work with and they love teaching you. As long as you’re listening to them you’ll do well there. If you aren’t a listener, aren’t prepared and think you’re a know it all, you’re not gonna come out of it too clever. They’re gonna get the hump with you”.
It’s easy – perhaps too easy – to read between the lines here. Highly touted prospect Frankie Gavin recently left Manchester based Anthony Farnell to hook up with the Tibbs camp. After saying all the right things throughout the build up, Gavins out of the ring demons reared their head again shortly before a proposed bout with Frank Haroche Horta and he withdrew. Is Gavin scheduled to reappear at the gym anytime soon? “Oh, I dunno bless him. I don’t know what he’s upto” sighs Mitchell. “I know what he’s feeling and I know what he’s going through. When you’re mentally not right, the pressure of a title fight over your head is bad enough as it is. He’s a lovely lad Frankie but if there’s a lot of pressure in your personal life, it’s a killer. You saw what it did to me. I’ve only seen the Katsidis fight back twice. I knew I wasn’t fit, I knew I wasn’t capable of doing the twelve rounds. When you look at the fight, I was two rounds up and then he started throwing punches at me in the third, instead of doing what I’d be doing in sparring and defending, I started throwing back with him! Stupid! Any boxer knows, if they’re on the attack, defend. I was trying to throw punches with him. It just shows where my head was. I’ve come back from it though. I just needed a bit of time to rest and chill out a bit”. Hopefully Gavin is able to do the same.
2011 proved that a determined, well trained Mitchell can be a challenge for any lightweight on the planet. The upcoming year could be a big one for Dagenhams finest, it will be good news for fight fans all over the world if he can remain focussed throughout and continue living up to his potential.
Mitchell in action, against John Murray:
Conquest and Maccarinelli victorious at York Hall
By @leeElford (Lee Elford)
TONY CONQUERS YORK HALL AS ‘BIG MAC’ BITES BACK
Enzo Maccarinelli made a triumphant return at York Hall, Bethnal Green on Friday night stopping the Hungarian champion Gyorgy Marosi via TKO in the 1st round and extending his record to 34 – 5 while securing the Southern Area Light Heavyweight title.
As Tom Petty’s ‘I won’t back down’ sounded out around the famous arena, Maccarinelli was paraded to the ring by his namesake and legendary trainer of son Joe, Enzo Calzaghe.
‘Big Mac’ wasted no time as he was swift out of the blocks, thumping his undefeated, considerably shorter and 7lb’s lighter counterpart with stiff left jabs and powerful right leads, looking much fitter and quicker after coming down to Light Heavyweight.
Marosi looked resilient as he attempted short pot shots at the dominant ex-cruiserweight world champion and occasionally landed. But it was all to be too little, and too much as the big blows started to take their toll and the ref stepped in as he looked unsteady against the ropes.
"Enzo’s a perfect replacement at the top of the bill, he’s obviously come in here tonight and done the business against a very dangerous opponent and we’ll be sitting down with him next week to have a chat about his next move" said Queensbury Promotions chief Francis Warren from ringside
On a future match up with Nathan Cleverly:
"It’s something down the line that potentially could happen, obviously it’s a massive fight in Wales, two Welshman at the Millennium Stadium would be a massive draw and a massive event. To begin with he can’t go straight in there and I think a fight against Ovill Mckenzie would be a sensible move for him and we’ll be looking to put that on for him early next year."
Later, Romford’s 7 – 0 Cruiserweight prospect Tony ‘The Conqueror’ Conquest landed the southern area cruiserweight title and improved to 8 – 0 after entering the arena to rapturous applause and support from a buoyant section of the crowd. The fight itself lived up to the crowds energy as he was taken 10 rounds by Toks Owoh in a one sided contest which was undoubtedly fight of the night.
Straight from the off, Conquest looked the stronger and classier, as he landed several big body shots and left jabs, but as Owoh soaked up the punishment and landed a few of his own, he only found The Conqueror replying with stinging combos to the head and body.
Owoh would enjoy a more even 2nd round, landing several solid shots but he was receiving twice as many in return with an equal amount landing. And the busier Conquest would take round 2 as well.
Heading into round 3 it was swaying The Conqueror’s way indefinitely as he landed a beautiful 3 jab, right lead combination which unsettled the Newham fighter for the first time.
As they approached the middle part of the fight it was Conquest landing with more and more severity only to find again Owoh again banging back with solid shots. At the end of round 5 he was hitting Owoh with several huge left and right’s to the head. After trudging back to his corner dejected and receiving more telling punishment in the coming rounds it was clear the result was a formality.
The Gallant Newham fighter would take a stumble in round 9 to a cheering crowd which was ruled a no knockdown. He had been rocked by a severe uppercut earlier in the round and he was evidently tired. As the 10th and final bell sounded, Tony Conquest held Toks Owoh’s hand aloft as a show of respect for the refusal to lie down in the face of adversity, ending with appreciative applause from all sectors of the crowd.7
Earlier in the evening, two of Jimmy and Mark Tibb’s prospects were in action. First, Lightweight Billy Morgan improved to 5 – 0 when easily outpointing Marc Callaghan over 4 rounds, who while gallant in defeat, unfortunately picked up a nasty head injury in the first round. Morgan looked classy, picking off his opponent and served up hurtful shots to the head and body.
Frank Buglioni put in another short nights work on his second outing as a professional with another 1st round stoppage. The highly rated prospect put his opponent down who survived an eight count before another barrage of classy combinations had his man hitting the canvas a second time and the ref quickly halted proceedings.
Mark Tibbs was ringside;
"To be honest with you where I was concentrating on Frank Buglioni I saw Billy on the monitor so I can’t speak about him but the old man said he done very well. I don’t want to fast track Frank, I don’t think he needs to be fast tracked, and he’s doing more than what’s being asked of him. I’m going to get him sparring with some decent opposition like I have done.
"We had this job come up against a south paw (tonight’s opponent Paul Morby) and because we had Billy Joe Saunders to help we had a bit of south paw sparring. He’d been working with Georgie Groves before that and a couple of Russians who Adam Booth’s got over there. So I think as he’s been mixing with good company it showed in there tonight.’’
Mark gave an update on the goings on with WBO intercontinental champion Kevin Mitchell;
‘’Kevin’s due back training with us next week. To be honest with you, I understand he’s on a ban with the board so there are no fights in place at the moment. But the good thing is he’s got a good frame of mind which is one good step and we’re about to get him back in the gym. He’s been absent for a little while now which’s not good. I reckon we’ll have him back in the ring in March." he concluded.
WBA middleweight title challenger Matt Macklin, a victim of a contentious decision against Felix Sturm earlier this year gave his views on the evening and also an insight into his plans for his next fight;
"It was good to see Enzo get a win back tonight, nice guy and a friend of mine. I wasn’t sure how he’d be down at light heavy. I thought he’d be either a complete success or a complete disaster. He was either going to be a monster at it or fragile you know. You can’t take too much out of that because he didn’t really get hit back but he’s obviously took his time and took the weight off properly, I spoke to him and he says he feels comfortable at it and fingers crossed he does.
"Unfortunately I didn’t get here till late but I thought the last one (Conquest vs Owoh) was a great fight. It was really entertaining and I thought that Tony showed a lot of grit and determination. It was a bit one sided I thought, at one stage I could see the corner pulling him out. He was taking a bit of a beating and he showed a lot of pride to get through to the final bell."
On a potential clash with Sergio Martinez:
I’m pretty confident the fight will get made, it’s not made but I’ve spoke with Lou a few times about it. Outside of Mayweather fighting him, Pacquiao’s not going to fight Martinez. After the Sturm fight which I thought I won and everyone in America thought I won, I’m the leading contender so, aside from Mayweather fighting him I think it’s definitely going to be Martinez next.’’
Also on the bill, ‘Big’ Tom Little scored a points victory over a 4 round contest against Hastings Rasami after making the better start in round 1 and 2. The Hatfield heavyweight made it to 2 – 0 to strong crowd support;
‘Rockin’ Robin Deakin earlier put in another tough crowd pleasing performance, taking Matty Tew the full 4 rounds in their Light Welterweight contest. Trained by Graham Earl, Deakin is still to improve on his 1 sole victory in what was his 40th outing as a professional. Tew improved to 8 – 0 and on top throughout, complained of a head butt from Deakin in round one before tying up the fight to big support.