Detractors of Frankie Edgar, Why?

Some dumbfuck from Bloody Elbow dubbed Frankie Edgar a “point fighter extraordinaire”. Everybody has a right to an opinion, but some of that site’s writers must be terribly bored. On Saturday morning (here in the states), over in the Philippines, Edgar defeated Urijah Faber by unanimous decision, and it’s pretty damn clear he’ll take the winner of this July’s Jose Aldo/Conor McGregor showdown.

I’m not the biggest fan of Edgar. I was a big BJ Penn fan, when Edgar defeated him twice in 2010 to regain the lightweight title. He had a formidable run as lightweight champ in 2010 and 2011 (the bouts with Gray Maynard) before he was merked by the much larger Benson Henderson in 2012. Edgar is not a big time finisher (sure, he finished the 2014 oldman version of BJ Penn and defeated Cub Swanson at the very end of a five round fight), but purely a pointfighter? Eh…

How about taking into consideration that Edgar has been consistently fighting guys that are 10 to 25 pounds heavier than he is at lightweight? It’s exceptional how good he is. His footwork is up there at the top. Edgar would barely, if at all, cut weight as a lightweight fighter. You are not going to be knocking people out who are that much bigger than you, taking that into account.

Also, take into consideration the level of competition Edgar has faced. When was the last time Urijah Faber was finished? (Yes, Faber was defeated by Renan Barao by  TKO last February, but that was an extremely early and controversial call by Herb Dean that I’m failing to count it.) All the top guys are hard to finish (this is my argument for Georges St.-Pierre detractors, too). When was Jose Aldo ever finished by an opponent? He hasn’t lost in nine years (2006). We can also call Aldo a pointfighter if Edgar is one. Hell, Aldo’s career has been made off of “pointfighting”.

Boxing is a Dying Sport

“As it is, the school of boxing is rapidly dying out, and when the professors of the present day have passed away it will be hard to say where the new ones are to come from.”
— said in 1879 by Professor Ned Donnelly, “The Art of Boxing”

“Professional boxing is dying a natural death“
— said in 1913, by the LA Times

“Boxing Is Dying Out!”
— said in 1923, another headline from the LA Times

“Jack Dempsey knows his own game. When he says boxing will be washed up within a year, unless something’s done, he’s talking straight from his heart.”
— said in 1937

“The game of boxing is dying today because the boys do not know how to box. There is no one to teach them how and they won’t work anyway”.
— said in 1940 by the LA Times again

“The experts have been saying for years that boxing is dying because kids no longer are hungry, because boxing no longer is the way for a poor kid to get rich quick.”
— said in 1963, LA Times….again…….

“And when the black man starts to excel in another particular sport the question starts floating around: “Is boxing dying?”
— said in 1969 by Eldridge Cleaver

“Boxing right now is dying with its superstar Muhammad Ali fighting competitors not worthy to try for his crown.”
— said by Black Belt Magazine, 1976

“Although I might like to be a lecturer ” If, as claims, “boxing is dead when I’m not involved,” what will happen to the sport when he does finally retire’
— said in 1977, Muhammad Ali

Mayweather-Pac and the Death of Boxing?
“The Mayweather-Pacquiao fight was boxing’s swan song. Without the buzz and possibility of a rematch with a Pacquiao win, Dana White, UFC and mix martial arts will consume the fighting world, if they hadn’t already”
— said in 2015 by Forbes.com

Hmm… apparently boxing has been dying since the 1870s.

Boxing will never die. Combat sports will always be around. Is boxing in a good place? No. It’s been corrupt for years. Too many unknown champs, too many organizations, no single governing body. Too many issues. Dead? Heh. What an ignorant proclamation.

Floyd Mayweather Defeated Manny Pacquiao: Don’t Allow Emotion to Overcome Reason

As that one meme goes, “Das it, mane”.

I don’t personally know Floyd Mayweather, Jr. but I reckon there’s enough information about him to conclude that he’s a piece of shit — his history of domestic abuse validates that. For that reason, and the fact that I’ve never been a fan of his boxing style, I wanted to see Manny Pacquiao win, although I objectively figured Floyd had this fight in the bag before it even began.

In the first two rounds, it was evident that Floyd was two steps ahead of Manny. Manny would bullrush him and Floyd would deftly dart out of the way. Detractors of Floyd’s boxing style call this “running”. In the following rounds, when Manny had Floyd near the ropes, Floyd clinched. Detractors of Floyd’s boxing style call this “hugging”.

Floyd controlled the entire fight — Manny won a few rounds, but he was never in control. Floyd caught him with some beautifully placed shots and remained on the move. Casual fans that have been chiming in since the fight ended are ignorant about the sweet, sweet science of movement in boxing. Head movement, foot work, punch, move, punch, bob and go.

Imagine if social media and the internet were around during 1974 at the time of the “Rumble in the Jungle”, when Muhammad Ali fought the much bigger, stronger George Foreman and remained on the move the entire fight. Now, say what you want about Ali, but he was a much popular boxer and more well liked human being back then that what Floyd will ever be today, but Ali was on the reverse for much of that fight.

Last night’s bout is probably the last time boxing will ever be that big. Why? Too much corruption, there’s no collective governing body, too many handpicking of opponents by champions, not enough marketing of its champions and stars, too much greediness, too many organizations.

Please, no rematch. There’s no need to watch these two go at it again. Nothing about last night stands to reason that a second fight would look any different.

My Floyd Mayweather, Jr. vs. Manny Pacquiao Prediction

Two evenings away, ladies and gentlemen. I can’t wait. I’m rocking my Freddie Roach Roots of Fight t-shirt. Obviously, I want Manny Pacquiao to shock the world and break the internet with a knockout victory over Floyd Mayweather, Jr. That would be emphatic and instrumental in putting boxing back on the map for a little bit. Objectively, do I see it happening? Well…

Floyd Mayweather is a pugilistic god. Personally, I think he’s a garbage human being considering his track record (look his past up yourself), but inside the boxing ring, he’s an artist. He’s a defensive mastermind and an intelligent counter-striker. He’s 47-0 for those two reasons. With that being said, Floyd doesn’t harbor a lot of power in his punches. Unless he catches Pacquiao, Mayweather isn’t going to knock him out.

That (obviously) means Mayweather will need to win by a decision. The one thing that Mayweather has never had to deal with is the movement AND volume of punches (with substantial power) that Manny Pacquiao can and will bring to the table.

Ricky Hatton brought the volume but not the movement to match it. Shane Mosley brought the speed and movement but not the volume of punches to threaten Floyd, but Mosley hurt Mayweather. I think, in the end, Mayweather will defeat Pacquiao, because he is so damn crafty. But I do think it is well within the possibility that Manny knocks out Mayweather. Floyd’s chin has never truly been tested in his career; he’s remained pretty much unscathed, and that is an ode to his defensive prowess in the ring.

This fight should have happened in 2010. I can’t stop saying it. Both of these guys have been pros since 1996. That’s a long time. Both are still obviously good and have matured in their dojos, but neither are in their prime. Still yet, when Joe Frazier and Muhammad Ali met in the Thrilla in Manila, neither were in their prime and it turned into one of the greatest fights in history.

Jon Jones is the Greatest Light Heavyweight Champion of All-Time, But He’s Also…

… The most immature, hands down.

This validates dubbing JBJ, "immature".
This validates dubbing JBJ, “immature”.

It’s depressing to see talent wasted.

In the octagon, he’s one of my favorite fighters to watch. He’s an athletic freak. Good genetics and the skill to boot. But he keeps walking in front of his own feet time and time again.

The UFC has stripped Jones of the title. Understood; he deserved to have the title taken off of him. The newly vacated UFC Light Heavyweight title will be up for grabs on May 23rd, still yet, in a bout featuring Anthony “Rumble” Johnson and Daniel Cormier, who’ll be taking this fight on four weeks notice pending on whether or not he can put the Popeyes down.

What a shame. It could’ve been worse for Jones, considering the currently unknown severity of the injuries of others in the hit and run accident. As far as I know, charges are pending against him.

The Cavaliers are Playing Chess While the Celtics Play Checkers

My Boston Celtics have been fighting valiantly against the Cleveland Cavaliers in the first round of the NBA playoffs, but the Cavs are just too damn good (thanks to the veritable, de facto Most Valuable Player and coach of the year, LeBron James). Sure, a series doesn’t truly begin until a home team loses, but the Cavs are toying with the C’s.

Does anybody else feel like Kyrie Irving doesn’t get the respect he deserves? He played at Duke for six minutes, long enough to wolf down a BLT sandwich and he spent the first three years of his NBA career dazzling the bitter fans in Cleveland and staying out of the national spotlight (mostly because, before LeBron’s return, nobody in America gives a shit about Cleveland). He has this Russell Westbrook-esque quality where he can concoct any shot he wants. He’s creative as hell on the offensive side of the ball. LeBron’s return has been a gamechanger for him.

No surprise, really. LeBron James is an elevator, unlike, say, Kobe Bryant or Michael Jordan. Before I tangentially go in five different directions and fail to make my intended point, LeBron being compared to MJ is the biggest misnomer ever. I know that MJ is widely considered to be the greatest of all-time, but LeBron is and has always been a pass-first player, somebody who’s more comparable to a Magic Johnson, an elevator. You can bet your bottom dollar that most players in the NBA would rather play with a LeBron in his prime over a Kobe in his prime, just because they know they’d see the light of day with the basketball. LeBron’s style is smiley, smiley “let’s contribute together!” Kobe’s is more harsh, isolated and singular. I’m not bashing Kobe, this time. It’s worked for him, considering that he wields five NBA Finals rings. I’m just throwing that out there.

Most Celtics fans harbor a special kind of hate for LeBron, thanks to what he did to our boys in 2011 and especially 2012. I mean, 2012 was the last fucking year, the last effing chance in this period of NBA history, to see the Celtics go back to another NBA Finals with that group of guys (Pierce, Garnett, Allen, Rondo, Doc) and LeBron crushed that chance, that dream. If that doesn’t define greatness on his behalf, I don’t know what does. Beating the Celtics was his last big obstacle en route to winning his first title when the Miami Heat crushed the Oklahoma City Thunder in the Finals that year.

This year’s Celtics don’t have the stars.

They are fun to watch. Great team chemistry. Brad Stevens is kicking ass as a head coach in the pros.

Stars win in the NBA. Don’t be a homer. Don’t be a dipshit. Don’t point out the San Antonio Spurs’ “team game” (Tim Duncan is top 7, possibly top 5, of all-time, player-wise). Look at championship teams of the past and you can see they wield stars. You can cite the 2004 Detroit Pistons, but they are an anomaly — they matched up against a dysfunctional LA Lakers team that still leaves me surprised they (the Lakers that year) were in the Finals due to the dissention going on that season. This Celtics team doesn’t have any stars — just really, really good, young players. Marcus Smart has the potential to be an all-star, but I feel like he’ll never be one of the top stars in the league. I’d love to be proved wrong, though.

Then, as it was, Then Again it will Be

The Boston Celtics are the 7-seed in the eastern conference playoffs and they’ll be facing an old rival in LeBron James and the Cleveland Cavaliers. Usually on a day like today, I’d be rambling on about tonight’s UFC Fight Night on Fox (official picks: Machida via KO or decision, Paige VanZant by decision and Jacare Souza by obliteration over the brave soul that is Chris Camozzi), but my Celtics rallied to make the playoffs and they’ll be playing tomorrow.

Ah, y’know, this time of the year takes me back. Way back to 2008, which feels like ten minutes ago to me. “Seven years ago”, you say? That’s hard to believe. That was a magical time period. The Celtics were at the top of the NBA world after finishing the regular season with 66 wins. Their playoff run was thrilling that year. Listen, I’m rapidly approaching my mid-20s, so I obviously wasn’t around to witness the Celtics doing their thing in the late ’50s, all throughout the ’60s, and the bigtime ’80s run where they ruled the basketball world with the Los Angeles Lakers. When the 2007 season rolled around, following the acquisitions of Kevin Garnett (who, in the past, on NBA video games, I’d always trade for!) and Ray Allen, hope was brought about.

The seven game series between the Celtics and Cavs in the second round of the eastern conference playoffs in 2008 heated up quickly in the seventh game when Paul Pierce and LeBron James had a back-and-forth scoring attack where they’d both answer each other’s bucket with one of their own. I’ll never forget that.

I’ll never forget the way the Celtics booted LeBron James out of Cleveland after they sent him and the Cavs on his/their way in the second round of the 2010 eastern conference playoffs.

And then, well, in 2011, as a member of the Miami Heat, LeBron James and Co. decimated the oft-injured Celtics and smacked them right out of the playoffs. I don’t want to talk about 2012 — that shit still hurts! A 3-2 series lead blown because LeBron James couldn’t stop hosting his revenge tour against my C’s.

It’s been a while. Three years since the Celtics have met up with LeBron James. The song remains the same, but the scenery has changed. Doc Rivers is the Los Angeles Clippers head coach. Paul Pierce is a Wizard (what the fuck? He’ll always be a Celtic). Kevin Garnett is back in Minnesota. Ray Allen is nowhere to be seen. Rajon Rondo is a Dallas Maverick.

This team wields a bunch of fucking misfits, right? Marcus Smart, Avery Bradley, Evan Turner, Brandon Bass, Tyler Zeller, Kelly Olynyk, the newly acquired Isaiah Thomas (sixth man of the year, anyone?), Jae Crowder…

This Celtics team finished with the second best post-All Star game record in the league at 23-12, only behind the… Cavaliers… at 26-9. I’ve loved watching them play. I must give Brad Stevens credit, because he has all these young guys playing with a formidable chemistry. Selfishness isn’t apparent on the court. It’s almost like a younger repertoire of the Celtics’ adage of old, “Ubuntu”.

Surely this series will at least go six games.

Though, I’d rather see the Celtics pull off the upset (of course). The city of Cleveland doesn’t deserve to sniff a Larry O’Brien trophy.