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Roy Jones Jr. Brings Show to Legends Casino - January 30

Richard E. Baker

Eastern Washington is waiting. Roy Jones Jr., is  is bringing his show to Legends Casino, in Toppenish, Washington, January 30. The casino, going full force into boxing and wanting the best fights in the Northwest, also wants to work with the best promoter. To have a fight with any BoxRec stars in the northwest is a treat. Jones is bringing several and hopes for a great show. Jones and the casino appear to be a perfect fit.

The headliner features two unbeaten, hard-hitting, super flyweights: Jade Bornea (14-0-0) and Ernesto Delgadillo (11-0-2). Bornea, from the Philippines, has been inspired by Manny Pacquiao. Pacquiao has brought new life to the islands. Hundreds of young men have risen from the villages and towns to enter the ring looking for an easier life and fast cash. Several are up to the task, including Bornea. Half of his wins have come against opponents with winning records which shows he is not a paper tiger.

Delgadillo has also fought mostly winning opponents, the bouts staged in Texas where tough boxers abound. This bout promises to be all action. One thing about little guys - they never slow down.

The Irish refuse to be outdone as Connor Doyle (11-0-0) takes on Miguel Dumas (11-2-0) in a middle weight bout. Doyle, from Derry, Ireland, hopes to continue his rise by bringing the luck of the Irish with him. Dumas, from Mexico, has other plans and hopes to beat the cabbage out of him. 

Welterweight Santiago Dominguez (20-0-0) steps in against Vitor Jones (16-5-0)  in what should an interesting bout. Dominguez, the favorite, plans to showcase his considerable his considerable skills while Jones wants to prove he is a tougher boxer than his record indicates.

Local favorite Richard VanSicklen (7-0-0) hopes to continue his unbeaten streak. He is a bright fellow with a slick style.


George Foreman ranks Deontay Wilder

By Robert Ecksel

“He’s not in the picture of the greatest heavyweights yet. Not enough time. Not enough time at all.”

As WBC heavyweight champion continues to knock down opponents like an unruly child playing with toy soldiers, his stock continues to rise. Casuals are in awe of his power, but more seasoned observers, like former champ George Foreman, have misgivings, at the same time as they give Wilder his due.

There have been other big punchers who were awkward as all get-out, Rocky Marciano comes to mind, but power is the great equalizer, which is not to diminish skill and finesse, however in short supply these days.

Speaking with TMZ Sports, Foreman sought to put the Wilder phenomenon in perspective. He doesn’t rag on the current best heavyweight in the world. The Bronze Bomber’s 42-0-1 record speaks for itself. But the current crop of heavyweights is an inch deep and a mile wide, and with the exception of Tyson Fury, who Wilder fought to a questionable draw, and possibly Andy Ruiz Jr. and Anthony Joshua, there are few fighters equipped to defeat a man his size with his upper body strength.

When asked if Wilder was the greatest heavyweight knockout artist of all time, Foreman said, “He’s good, but he hasn’t approached Joe Louis, Joe Frazier, Mike Tyson—no, he hasn’t approached that type of recognition yet. No way.

“For me, he has to have a performance like Mike Tyson did against Trevor Berbick. Boy, when I saw that in Vegas I thought, ‘This guy’s a nightmare.’ When he comes to a Tyson type knockout of Berbick, then I’ll put him up high. But [not] right now. That Tyson could hit, man.”

TMZ asked Foreman where he would rank Wilder in the pantheon of great heavyweights.

“He’s a good fighter, and for the first time the heavyweight action is there where it ought to be. But he’s not in the picture of the greatest heavyweights yet. Not enough time. Not enough time at all.”

Fight fans screwed for believing

By Robert Ecksel

Judge Nguyen added insult to injury by saying fight fans “got what they paid for.” (AP Photo/John Locher)

After waiting for no less than six years for the two best welterweights in the world to fight one another, Floyd Mayweather and Manny Pacquiao finally got it on at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada, on May 2, 2015.

The hoopla surrounding the bout, which was dubbed the “Fight of the Century” before a single punch was thrown, was off the charts and failed to live up to expectations. Over 12 one-sided rounds, Mayweather dominated Pacquiao, who confessed at the bout’s conclusion that he had injured his shoulder weeks before while in training and, as a result, was reduced to fighting one-handed.

Mayweather-Pacquiao generated more revenue than was ever thought possible. Rolling in dough, the fighters were happy, but the majority of fight fans who paid $100 to watch it on pay-per-view felt ripped off and rightly so. The most irate fans were also the most litigious and enlisted the services of a gaggle of starry-eyed lawyers to represent them in 16 class action suits. The defendants were the fighters, their promoters, HBO, and the producer who broadcast the Blight of the Century to an unsuspecting public.

Alleging that Pacquiao was “damaged goods,” which he admitted in the post-fight interview, and that the fight was nothing more than a “magnificent con,” the United States District Court for the Central District of California dismissed the plaintiffs’ complaints in August 2017.

An appeal was brought before the Ninth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Pasadena, California. After weighing the evidence on both sides, Judge Jacqueline H. Nguyen issued a ruling on Thursday, November 21, which stated that the fight “may have lacked the drama of the pre-fight hype,” but the plaintiffs “suffered no legally cognizable injury,” before added insult to injury by saying fight fans “got what they paid for.”

MGM Grand—surprise for Kovalev

By Richard E. Baker

The weigh-in at the MGM Grand hotel in Las Vegas went as smoothly as butter in a frying pan. Few people realize the work that goes into staging a fight, especially a big title fight. It takes a family all working together for the same goal. I am always surprised more people do not attend weigh-ins, although this one was well packed. They are open to everyone and they are free, something unusual in Las Vegas. Plenty of free posters were passes out along with other trinkets. Attending a weigh-in gives people a chance to view the stock the way someone at the track can view a fine thoroughbred. Is there any fat around the waist? Are the muscles fat or stringy? How about the attitude? Much can be learned from a man’s expression. Some men exude confidence. Others have a quiet, determined look about them. Others seem uninterested.  

Watching the men being herded in and out reminded me of being a kid and working at a sale barn in Chamberlain, South Dakota. I would smack the behinds of cows and pigs on the behind and get them into the arena where bids, after careful inspection of the products, were made.

Weigh-ins carry their own energy. The media, mostly video crews and photographers vies for spots to get the best shots. One never knows who might show up. People were surprised to see Larry Merchant make an appearance. He has had some recent health problems, but seem to be doing fine.

There were but two incidents at the event: Blair Cobbs (12-0-1 8KO) and Sergey Kovalev. Cobbs was especially funny. He almost got boded off the scales. The amount of animosity was a surprise considering he is a Las Vegas boy. He took it with a super abundance of humor and arrogance and called out for more. The only explanation seemed to be because he was fighting a Mexican, the always tough Carlos Ortiz (11-4 11KO). The crowd was strictly pro Mexican and one might have thought he were in Tijuana rather Las Vegas. I always feel inadequate in such circumstances because I do not speak Spanish while all the Mexicans there spoke English. I took Latin, German, and French in University and failed them all, but did later learn some Russian and Vietnamese when I lived there.

Kovalev was the other surprise and he seemed to be as surprised as anyone. He came in overweight, not by much, just 1/2 pound. He stripped off 1/4 pounds of underwear.He had an hour to lose the weight and returned 15 minutes later and was fine. Who knows what he removed?

The press room was a hovel of inactivity, empty plates and overturned coffee cups, tortilla chips scattered across the floor like windblown leaves. Bodies snoozed on tables, legs draped over chairs, a few babbling cell phones in the distance, three or four media cameras filming beautiful Latina women announcers working for unknown media outlets and spreading the immediate news of Kovalev being overweight and what it might mean for the fight and for the history of boxing, much less the world at large.

I sat at a table and tried to come up with a subject. There was much talk about the lax enthusiasm from the crowd at the weigh-in. They seemed to be a bit tired. No wonder. I have been to many such events. One cannot weigh in 16 boxers before the main event and still expect people to be interested. I i always best to weigh in the semi-main events, then the main event. Few people care about the rest. Let them see the champs, then let them go.  

The press room was pretty dead until the Mexican beauty Yohana Vargas entered. She brings with her a flame of pure fire and leaves a trail of smoldering coals behind. Men cling to hear like barnacles on a boat. (That’s a poor metaphor) Like fuzz on a peach. She insisted on seeing the pictures I took of her and deleted the poor ones. She was not into “natural” and finally struck me a pin-up pose.

I needed to be distracted and Morris, a middle-aged man, solved the problem of a subject. He was drinking a cup pf coffee and we got into a conversation about boxing and the past. He ran his knotty fingers through his thinning hair.

“They just don’t make boxers like they did in the past, just not as tough or as skilled.”

This statement, erroneous, of course, has been said throughout history. For retired boxers, the toughest time was when they fought. The new guys just don’t have it. For boxing fans the golden age of boxing was in the 70’s, the 60’s, the 50’s, the 40’s, and farther back depending on the age of the fan. As with many people, the good old days has always been a favorite with writers. Most of us are drawn to the past and never see the events clearly. The food was fresher, the houses more unique, people had better relationships, family’s were tighter, the cars had more style and were better. Ha! The cars in my day needed to be tuned up every 10,000 miles - points, plugs, condenser, possibly have the valves readjusted. You needed to work the choke and the throttle just to get it started, then, don’t try and drive it for 10 minutes or it might stall on you at the worst time, and forget about trying to keep the fog off the windshield..

In the 50‘s trainer Whitey Bimstein complained because he couldn’t get quality opponents for his boys, “Fifty years ago there would have been twenty managers fighting to get boys into a spot. You can’t blame them with the kind of kids they got.” Cecil Schoomaker said, “You look at some of these big heavyweights now, and unless they knock each other out with the first punch, it’s so dull you could cry.”

Every era has had great fighters. Return to the bare-knuckles days and you had people like Mendoza followed by the first days of gloved combat with Jack Johnson. The 20’s featured boxers like Jimmy Wilde, and on it goes. Fortunately we can view many of these old boxers and we don’t have to rely of hearsay and clouded memories. The older boxing skills were suspect. The great Jimmy Wilde held his hands at knee level; Jack Johnson often hit like a girl, (a really big and tough girl). Except for Willie Pep virtually no fighters except Sandy Saddler had any footwork. Rocky Marciano stumbled around like a three-legged water buffalo.One of my favorite fighters was Gene Fulmer. His left jab resembled someone hitting a tennis ball. What these boxers had were guts, guts in buckets.

If you watch the fights from the time they were recorded you will see that boxing skills evolved over time. There no better skilled boxers than at this time. Guts may be debatable.

I’m Dreaming of a Whyte Christmas


By Robert Ecksel on December 11, 2019  

Dillian Whyte has been waiting to challenge WBC heavyweight champion Deontay Wilder for what seems like forever. There’s a distinct lack of credible challengers for “The Bronze Bomber” to fight. With the exception of Tyson Fury, with whom he drew and will presumably rematch sometime soon; Luis Ortiz, who he has twice beaten by early stoppage; and resurgent Anthony Joshua, who will likely stay as far as possible from the Alabama Assassin’s right hand; Whyte is part of the discussion again, now that his provisional suspension for failing a pre-fight drug test has been lifted and his status upgraded from alleged drug cheat and restored to interim WBC heavyweight champion.   Unlike other sports, with their protocols and concern about their image, boxing is unusually forgiving when it comes to athletes who get caught juicing, but if the fighters can generate revenue, a slap on the wrist is the extent of their punishment,and the show goes on.   On December 6, UK Anti-Doping (UKAD) withdrew its accusation against Whyte, who failed a random, pre-fight urine test when trace amounts of Dianabol, a banned substance, were found in his system.   UKAD’s statement reads as follows:   UK Anti-Doping and the professional boxer, Dillian Whyte, can today jointly confirm that Mr Whyte was charged with an anti-doping rule violation (ADRV) earlier this year, but that this charge has now been withdrawn.    The charge was brought after a sample provided by Mr Whyte on 20 June 2019 indicated the presence of two metabolites of a steroid. UKAD initiated an investigation with which Mr Whyte cooperated fully. UKAD has accepted the explanation provided by Mr Whyte and, in accordance with the UK Anti-Doping Rules, the charge against Mr Whyte has been withdrawn.    This would ordinarily mean that UKAD would not make any public statement, in accordance with the applicable confidentiality rules to which UKAD is subject. However, since certain confidential information relating to this matter (including the fact of the initial charge) has unfortunately made its way into the public domain, UKAD and Mr Whyte have agreed to take the unusual step of releasing the following limited information to put an end to speculation concerning Mr Whyte’s status.     Case Details   In respect of Mr Whyte's drug testing results, the following points are relevant:   There is nothing in Mr Whyte's longitudinal urinary profile to suggest that he has used steroids. The levels of the metabolites found in Mr Whyte's 20 June 2019 sample were extremely low.  Mr Whyte had provided a urine sample to VADA on 17 June 2019, i.e. 3 days before his 20 June 2019 sample, which was tested by a WADA-accredited laboratory and which returned a negative result, including for the metabolites in question. Mr Whyte provided several other doping control samples to UKAD and VADA between 20 June and 20 July 2019 (i.e. the date of his fight with Oscar Rivas) – all of which also tested negative. In light of the above points, the trace amounts of metabolites found in the 20 June 2019 sample are consistent with an isolated contamination event, and they are not suggestive of doping.    Having rigorously scrutinised and investigated the detailed factual and scientific evidence provided by Mr Whyte, UKAD is satisfied that the presence of the very low amounts of metabolites in his 20 June 2019 sample was not caused by any fault, negligence or wrongdoing on Mr Whyte’s part and, given the circumstances, could not have affected the fight between Mr Whyte and Mr Rivas on 20 July 2019. Indeed, prior to that fight, an independent tribunal considered a number of the above factors before deciding to permit Mr Whyte to participate. Following that preliminary ruling, UKAD continued its investigation and Mr Whyte provided further evidence in his defence, which has culminated in UKAD’s decision to withdraw the charge.    Mr Whyte acknowledges that, based on the test results reported to UKAD relating to his 20 June 2019 sample, UKAD acted in accordance with the UK Anti-Doping Rules by issuing the initial charge and in the conduct of its investigation.    Pursuant to the terms of the UK National Anti-Doping Policy, UKAD must always act in the interests of justice and not solely for the purpose of obtaining determinations adverse to athletes. In the present case, UKAD considers that means that the appropriate course of action is for the charge against Mr Whyte to be withdrawn and does so in accordance with the relevant anti-doping rules.     The WBC, echoing UKAD’s ruling, released its own statement yesterday.   On July 20, 2019, Dillian Whyte defeated Oscar Rivas conquering the WBC Interim Heavyweight World Championship.  A few days later, a news report made public that an out-of-competition urine sample collected by UKAD (UK Anti-Doping) on June 20, 2019 from Dillian Whyte had yielded an adverse finding.  In light of that adverse finding, and pending the outcome of the WBC’s own investigation and adjudicatory process, on July 30, 2109, the WBC provisionally suspended its recognition of Dillian Whyte as WBC Interim World Heavyweight Champion and Mandatory Challenger of the division.   On December 6, 2019, UKAD made a public announcement withdrawing its charge against Dillian Whyte.   Based on limited but detailed research and information gathering, including the WBC’s consultation with two independent experts, the WBC found that there was no sufficient or conclusive evidence that Whyte intentionally, or even knowingly, ingested a banned substance with the purpose of enhancing his performance in any fashion.  In light of the WBC’s own finding and of UKAD’s withdrawal of the claim against Mr. Whyte, the WBC has closed its internal investigation.   The WBC is hereby lifting its provisional suspension and confirming its recognition of Mr. Whyte as WBC Interim World Heavyweight Champion.   Consistent with the WBC Board of Governors’ Ruling at last October’s 57th WBC Annual Convention, Interim Champion Whyte shall become the Mandatory Challenger of the division immediately after Champion Deontay Wilder’s mandatory defense against current Mandatory Challenger Tyson Fury, with the mandatory defense against Whyte being due on or about February of 2021.          


I’m Dreaming of a Whyte Christmas

By Robert Ecksel on December 11, 2019

 

Dillian Whyte has been waiting to challenge WBC heavyweight champion Deontay Wilder for what seems like forever. There’s a distinct lack of credible challengers for “The Bronze Bomber” to fight. With the exception of Tyson Fury, with whom he drew and will presumably rematch sometime soon; Luis Ortiz, who he has twice beaten by early stoppage; and resurgent Anthony Joshua, who will likely stay as far as possible from the Alabama Assassin’s right hand; Whyte is part of the discussion again, now that his provisional suspension for failing a pre-fight drug test has been lifted and his status upgraded from alleged drug cheat and restored to interim WBC heavyweight champion.

 

Unlike other sports, with their protocols and concern about their image, boxing is unusually forgiving when it comes to athletes who get caught juicing, but if the fighters can generate revenue, a slap on the wrist is the extent of their punishment,and the show goes on.

 

On December 6, UK Anti-Doping (UKAD) withdrew its accusation against Whyte, who failed a random, pre-fight urine test when trace amounts of Dianabol, a banned substance, were found in his system.

 

UKAD’s statement reads as follows:

 

UK Anti-Doping and the professional boxer, Dillian Whyte, can today jointly confirm that Mr Whyte was charged with an anti-doping rule violation (ADRV) earlier this year, but that this charge has now been withdrawn. 

 

The charge was brought after a sample provided by Mr Whyte on 20 June 2019 indicated the presence of two metabolites of a steroid. UKAD initiated an investigation with which Mr Whyte cooperated fully. UKAD has accepted the explanation provided by Mr Whyte and, in accordance with the UK Anti-Doping Rules, the charge against Mr Whyte has been withdrawn. 

 

This would ordinarily mean that UKAD would not make any public statement, in accordance with the applicable confidentiality rules to which UKAD is subject. However, since certain confidential information relating to this matter (including the fact of the initial charge) has unfortunately made its way into the public domain, UKAD and Mr Whyte have agreed to take the unusual step of releasing the following limited information to put an end to speculation concerning Mr Whyte’s status.  

 

Case Details

 

In respect of Mr Whyte's drug testing results, the following points are relevant:

 

  • There is nothing in Mr Whyte's longitudinal urinary profile to suggest that he has used steroids.
  • The levels of the metabolites found in Mr Whyte's 20 June 2019 sample were extremely low. 
  • Mr Whyte had provided a urine sample to VADA on 17 June 2019, i.e. 3 days before his 20 June 2019 sample, which was tested by a WADA-accredited laboratory and which returned a negative result, including for the metabolites in question.
  • Mr Whyte provided several other doping control samples to UKAD and VADA between 20 June and 20 July 2019 (i.e. the date of his fight with Oscar Rivas) – all of which also tested negative.
  • In light of the above points, the trace amounts of metabolites found in the 20 June 2019 sample are consistent with an isolated contamination event, and they are not suggestive of doping. 

 

Having rigorously scrutinised and investigated the detailed factual and scientific evidence provided by Mr Whyte, UKAD is satisfied that the presence of the very low amounts of metabolites in his 20 June 2019 sample was not caused by any fault, negligence or wrongdoing on Mr Whyte’s part and, given the circumstances, could not have affected the fight between Mr Whyte and Mr Rivas on 20 July 2019. Indeed, prior to that fight, an independent tribunal considered a number of the above factors before deciding to permit Mr Whyte to participate. Following that preliminary ruling, UKAD continued its investigation and Mr Whyte provided further evidence in his defence, which has culminated in UKAD’s decision to withdraw the charge. 

 

Mr Whyte acknowledges that, based on the test results reported to UKAD relating to his 20 June 2019 sample, UKAD acted in accordance with the UK Anti-Doping Rules by issuing the initial charge and in the conduct of its investigation. 

 

Pursuant to the terms of the UK National Anti-Doping Policy, UKAD must always act in the interests of justice and not solely for the purpose of obtaining determinations adverse to athletes. In the present case, UKAD considers that means that the appropriate course of action is for the charge against Mr Whyte to be withdrawn and does so in accordance with the relevant anti-doping rules.

 

 

The WBC, echoing UKAD’s ruling, released its own statement yesterday.

 

On July 20, 2019, Dillian Whyte defeated Oscar Rivas conquering the WBC Interim Heavyweight World Championship.  A few days later, a news report made public that an out-of-competition urine sample collected by UKAD (UK Anti-Doping) on June 20, 2019 from Dillian Whyte had yielded an adverse finding.  In light of that adverse finding, and pending the outcome of the WBC’s own investigation and adjudicatory process, on July 30, 2109, the WBC provisionally suspended its recognition of Dillian Whyte as WBC Interim World Heavyweight Champion and Mandatory Challenger of the division.

 

On December 6, 2019, UKAD made a public announcement withdrawing its charge against Dillian Whyte.

 

Based on limited but detailed research and information gathering, including the WBC’s consultation with two independent experts, the WBC found that there was no sufficient or conclusive evidence that Whyte intentionally, or even knowingly, ingested a banned substance with the purpose of enhancing his performance in any fashion.  In light of the WBC’s own finding and of UKAD’s withdrawal of the claim against Mr. Whyte, the WBC has closed its internal investigation.

 

The WBC is hereby lifting its provisional suspension and confirming its recognition of Mr. Whyte as WBC Interim World Heavyweight Champion.

 

Consistent with the WBC Board of Governors’ Ruling at last October’s 57th WBC Annual Convention, Interim Champion Whyte shall become the Mandatory Challenger of the division immediately after Champion Deontay Wilder’s mandatory defense against current Mandatory Challenger Tyson Fury, with the mandatory defense against Whyte being due on or about February of 2021.

 

 

 

 

 

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