JUNE 2005


Poem of the Month
By Tom Smario

Cinderella Man
Book Excerpt by Mike DeLisa

Entertaining Fighters and Prospects
By Adam Pollack

Fatty Langtry: Pudgy
Pugilist of the Past

By Robert Carson

John Klein: 19th-Century
Trainer Extraordinaire

By Pete Ehrmann

Ring Leader
By Ron Lipton

Incentives in Professional
Boxing Contracts

By Rafael Tenorio

Fight Town
Book Excerpt by Tim Dahlberg

The Regulation of Boxing
on Tribal Lands:
Towards a Pan-Indian
Boxing Commission

By James Alexander

Spotlight on Cut Man Lenny DeJesus
By Sam Gregory

Dick Wipperman
by Pete Ehrmann

Jack Johnson: The Dates,
the Events, the Sources

by Stuart Templeton

Touching Gloves with...
"Irish" Art Hafey

by Dan Hanley

ENTERTAINING FIGHTERS AND
HOT PROSPECTS, BY WEIGHT CLASS


by Adam Pollack


HEAVYWEIGHTS
Vitali Klitschko: Conditioning, height, reach, power, underrated ring generalship, and recent toughness make him difficult to beat. Dominated Danny Williams, who had knocked out Tyson. Next taking on former champion Hasim Rahman. The guy comes to fight and usually succeeds in taking out his opponents.

Hasim Rahman: Aging former champ's KO over Kali Meehan put him in the limelight again. He has the pop and heart to give Vitali a test. Look at it this way: He has rarely ever been in a boring fight.

Mike Tyson: Still a dangerous puncher who gives you your money's worth. No shame in losing to the tough Williams.

David Tua: Finally on the comeback trail. Just remember, no one has ever made him take a backward step, and he's got the power and chin to test Vitali.

Riddick Bowe: I know a lot of folks are going to roll their eyes at this one, but remember, he was always in entertaining fights, never took a backward step, threw a lot of punches for a big man, hit really hard, and showed a lot of heart.

Up-and-comers
Samuel Peter (22-0): Victory over Charles Shufford, devastating KO destruction of Jeremy Williams, and impressive KO over Yanqui Diaz show he might be the best of the crop of up and comers. Looks quite strong and durable.

Calvin Brock (24-0): 2000 U.S. Olympian with amateur win over Dominic Guinn. Win over then undefeated Terry Smith was his first step up, and he put on entertaining bout with Cliff Etienne. Good skills and picks punches well, but may have some chin and strength issues. Possible April bout with Jameel McCline.

Nicolai Valuev (40-0): Recent KO9 over former top amateur Paolo Vidoz, WDQ4 over previously unbeaten Gerald Nobles, and KO3 over Attlia Levin. Book's still out on him.

Audley Harrison (17-0): 2000 Olympic gold medalist. Older guy, but big, tall, strong, and southpaw. Has fought mostly nobodies and may be suspect as a pro. Juan Carlos Gomez (38-1): Followed surprising upset first-round KO loss to Yanqui Diaz with a KO3 over David DeFiagbon. Busy southpaw style makes him difficult for anyone.

Alexander Dimitrenko (17-0): 22-year-old, 6'7" Ukrainian has wins over Julius Francis and Ross Puritty, but his little known.

Ruslan Chagaev (16-0-1): Former amateur standout southpaw moving along slowly as a pro. It is unclear whether he has that something special.

Cristobal Arreola (10-0): Former 2001 National Golden Gloves champion at 178 pounds, this guy is quite entertaining and comes to fight.

Devin Vargas (1-0): U.S. Olympian at 201 has an entertaining style.

George Garcia (6-0): Entertaining young fighter who fought in the 2004 U.S. Olympic Trials.



CRUISERWEIGHTS
Jean-Marc Mormeck: Wins over Virgil Hill and Alexander Gurov, and then undefeated Wayne Braithwaite make him the man at this weight. And he's got a pretty entertaining, hard-punching style.

O'Neil Bell: Dangerous puncher deserves dream match against Mormeck.

Up-and-comers
Felix Cora Jr. (16-0-2): Recent bouts with Michael Simms Jr. has given him some recognition.

Valery Brudov (29-0): Good record but hasn't fought anyone.



LIGHT-HEAVYWEIGHTS
Glencoffe Johnson: A fighter's fighter. A guy who comes to fight, gives it his all, willing to fight anyone, and whose veteran experience is paying off. You've got to like him. Victories over Jones Jr. and Tarver have him atop the division.

Zsolt Erdei: Solid, crisp punches with good boxing skill make him a tall task for anyone. Won lineal title from Julio Gonzales. That said, he's still got a bit of that dull European style about him.

Antonio Tarver: Once again, inconsistent offensive output lost him a close bout to Glencoffe Johnson.

Julio Gonzalez: Relaxed, busy style still a threat to anyone. Coming off impressive win over David Telesco but lost to Zsolt Erdei.

Up-and-comers
Jaidon Codrington (7-0): Good puncher and strong, entertaining style. Recently turned pro. Looked like a prospect as an amateur.

Curtis Stevens (6-0): Very short but powerful and aggressive. Good former amateur should make for some entertaining bouts.

Marcus Johnson (3-0): Looked good as an amateur.



SUPER-MIDDLEWEIGHTS
Joe Calzaghe: At 38-0, simply the best at this weight. Should be a superstar but his promotion/management has not been the best.

Mikkel Kessler: Has wins over Dingaan Thobela and Julio Cesar Green. Just defeated Manny Siaca, who had defeated Anthony Mundine, who had defeated Echols.

Antwun Echols: Lost to Anthony Mundine but still a big puncher who can make for an entertaining fight with the right style matchup. Dream match would be with Leff Lacy.

Up-and-comers
Jeff Lacy (19-0): Looked good in stoppage victory over Syd Vanderpool and hopefully learned something from his decision win over Omar Sheika. Entertaining puncher.

Andre Ward (2-0): Olympic gold medalist may very quickly become a threat. Question marks surround his chin and power.

Andre Dirrell (3-0): 2004 Olympic bronze-medalist southpaw just turned pro. He's blazingly fast, moves well, but possibly not that physically strong.

Anthony Hanshaw (18-0) Quick boxer but doesn't have much power. Lost to Jermain Taylor in the Olympic Trials.



MIDDLEWEIGHTS
Bernard Hopkins: The ageless wonder as champion has always found a way to win. When will age finally catch up with him? Upcoming match with Jermain Taylor could be D-day.

Jermain Taylor: Looks to have the right stuff. Dominated William Joppy and Daniel Edouard.

Ronald "Winky" Wright: Win over Felid Trinidad and two victories over Shane Mosley show he will be a very difficult stylistic challenge for anyone.

Felix Sturm: Lost to Jermain Taylor in the 2000 Olympics. Showing against Oscar De La Hoya should earn him a shot.

Ike Quartey: Making a comeback. He was never in a bad fight, and could make things interesting for the division.

Up-and-comers
Kelly Pavlik (24-0): Former top U.S. amateur and has a KO win over Grady Brewer, who just defeated young contenders Anthony Thompson and should've gotten the decision against Sechew Powell. Pavlik just stepped it up with clear wins over Ross Thompson and Dorian Beaupierre.

Tarvis Simms (20-0): Coming off close win over Carlos Bojorquez.

Jesus Gonzales (11-0): Former top U.S. amateur southpaw is young and developing.

Andre Berto (4-0): Just turned pro, but this former amateur standout is strong and entertaining.

Ahmed Kaddour (18-1): As seen on The Contender, despite loss to Ishe Smith, looks to be an entertaining and developing fighter.

Sergio Mora (13-0): Lacks power but has speed and skill. A Contender.



JUNIOR-MIDDLEWEIGHTS
Kassim Ouma: Looked great against hard punching and busy Kofi Jantuah. Ouma keeps a busy pace and has solid defense and an iron chin. Could make a good match with anyone.

Ricardo Mayorga: Almost impossible for this vicious slugger to be in a boring fight. Upcoming bout with Alejandro Garcia.

Vernon Forrest: Still a good boxer and a threat to anyone. Injuries have kept him sidelined.

Travis Simms: Switch hitter coming off impressive KO win over former undefeated Alejandro Garcia for WBA crown, and has recent W12 over Bronco McKart.

Rodney Jones: Experienced veteran a challenge to anyone. He has wins over Margarito and Lerma. Last loss a 2000 majority decision to undefeated Harry Simon.

Kofi Jantuah: Showed very good power with knockout wins over Santos and undefeated Rubio. Remember, even though he lost to Ouma, he still threw over 900 punches, and threw them pretty hard.

Up-and-comers
Paul Williams (26-0): Tall southpaw should start to step it up.

Peter Manfredo (22-1): A Contender.

Yuri Foreman (17-0): Good European boxing style but not strong.

Vanes Martirosyan (0-0): U.S. Olympic representative should make for a very good pro. He's tall, strong, he can move, and he's got some fire in his belly.



WELTERWEIGHTS
Zab Judah: Was more aggressive in rematch with Corey Spinks, and it paid off with KO win.

Antonio Margarito: Stopped undefeated Kermit Cintron on ESPN PPV. Lost questionable decision to Daniel Santos at junior-middleweight. He's tall, strong, and a very busy, nonstop puncher who deserves a title shot at welterweight.

Shane Mosley: Did better in the rematch with Winky Wright at junior-middleweight, but once again fell short. Moving back to welterweight, his more effective weight class.

Oscar De La Hoya: Could make for some interesting matchups at this his more natural weight.

Up-and-comers
Ishe Smith (15-0): Solid in all departments. Looks to be a Contender favorite.

Alfonso Gomez (11-2-1): Has shown toughness, strength and determination in his Contender performances with wins against Manfredo and Kaddour.

Vanes Martirosyan (1-0): U.S. Olympic representative should make for a very good pro. He's tall, strong, he can move, and he's got some fire in his belly.

Joel Julio (18-0): Young and strong knockout puncher.



LIGHT-WELTERWEIGHTS
Ricky Hatton: Looks to have the right stuff and just upset lineal champion Kostya Tszyu in Manchester. Possible fight with lightweight king Diego Corrales next.

Kostya Tszyu: The great champ was able to demolish Sharmba Mitchell but retired after the 11th round against 26-year-old Ricky Hatton. Tszyu's future is uncertain.

Floyd Mayweather Jr.: Would like to see if he can take a punch at this weight. Arturo Gatti will be the test.

Arturo Gatti: The guy who has given the most to the sport -- always dangerous against anyone. Impressive KO win over Leonard Dorin and showed improved skill as well as typical devastating power against Jesse James Leija. Will have to impose will against slick Floyd Mayweather Jr.

Vivian Harris: Coming off rematch KO win over Otkay Urkal. He has improved, he's tall, and he can punch. Lone loss to Ray Oliveira.

Junior Witter: Since 2000 decision loss to Zab Judah, he had 15 straight KOs before winning decision over rugged Lovemore N'Dou.

Up-and-comers
Miguel Cotto (23-0): Moving along nicely; can box and punch, looks to be the real deal. Of all the young contenders, has overcome the most tests -- former champ Cesar Bazan, undefeated Carlos Maussa, Lovemore N'Dou (who previously gave Sharmba Mitchell hell), previously undefeated amateur nemesis Kelson Pinto, strong former champs Randall Bailey and DeMarcus Corley. Upcoming bout with Mohamad Abdulaev, who beat him in the 2000 Olympics.

Mohamed Abdulaev (14-1): Strong, very entertaining style; only loss is a fight he had won easily until stopped in the last round. A legitimate threat to anyone.

Demetrius Hopkins (18-0-1): Moving along carefully.

Paul Malignaggi (19-0): Quick boxer probably lacks sufficient power in today's deep field, and he has hand problems. Coming off win over experienced Sandro Casamonica.

Dmitry Salita (20-0): Technically sound boxer is gradually stepping up the competition, but struggled in win over his first live opponent in Paul Delgado.

Lamont Peterson (4-0): Top amateur just turned pro. Gave U.S. Olympian Rock Allen tough amateur bouts and will likely be a better pro.

Anthony Peterson (4-0): Top amateur just turned pro, along with his brother.

Lorenzo Reynolds (3-0): Good southpaw amateur just turned pro.



LIGHTWEIGHTS
Wins over Casamayor, Freitas, and now Castillo establish him as the premier lightweight. Castillo bout is a very strong fight-of-the-year candidate.

Jose Luis Castillo: Proved his toughness against Lazcano, Casamayor, and Julio Diaz, but got stopped in a competitive fight with Diego Corrales.

Acelino Freitas: Can punch like hell, but moved too much against Diego.

Juan Diaz (27-0): Entertaining and well-conditioned with an all action style. Looked good against Sim. Coming off great fight with Lorcy and again showed conditioning against Irwin. Will make a fun fight with anyone. Upcoming bout with Ebo Elder.

Up-and-comers
Almazbek " Kid Diamond" Raiymkulov (20-0): Knocked out Lamar Murphy for the first time in his career, as well as undefeated Koba Gogaladze. Looks to have the power and Kostya Tszyu-like style that can take him places.

Ebo Elder (22-1): Former amateur standout southpaw has, with hard work and guts, proven to be a formidable foe. Has wins over former undefeated Oscar Diaz, Emannuel Clottey, Dagoberto Najera, and recent KO12 over Courtney Burton in gut-check fight.

Jose Miguel Cotto (24-0) Just starting to step up the competition.

Jose Armando Santa Cruz (18-0): Tall lightweight is still developing, coming off split decision win over Lamar Murphy.

Urbano Antillon (14-0): Seen on HBO Latino against Adan Hernandez, still developing.

Vincente Escobedo (1-0): U.S. Olympian should be entertaining.

Victor Ortiz (7-0) Former PAL amateur champion is a young, strong, and entertaining southpaw.



SUPER-FEATHERWEIGHTS
Marco Antonio Barrera: Never count out this veteran. Rubbermatch with Morales was fight of the year.

Erik Morales: Always in a good fight, including recent victory over Manny Pacquiao.

Robbie Peden: Repeated stoppage win against Nate Campbell.

Yodsanan Sor Nanthachai: Coming off win over Steve Forbes. Has wins over Lakva Sim and Lamont Pearson. Needs exposure.

Jesus Chavez: Defeated Carlos Hernandez in a very entertaining match.

Up-and-comers
Jason Litzau (11-0): Former amateur just getting started.

Aaron Garcia (3-0): Former top amateur with a great deal of experience.



FEATHERWEIGHTS
Manny Pacquiao: Thankfully avoided rematch against less than consistent Marquez and moved up to test 130 against Morales in fun fight.

In-Jin Chi: Entertaining, durable fighter. Scheduled match with undefeated Rocky Juarez.

Scott Harrison: Wins over Brodie, Tom Johnson, Wayne McCullogh, and Manuel Medina show this feather will be a tough match for anyone.

Up-and-comers
Rocky Juarez (23-0): Olympic silver medalist coming along slowly but surely, gaining the valuable experience he needs to develop into a solid pro. Wins over Guty Espadas and Juan Carlos Ramirez were impressive. Juarez might be a modern-day James Jeffries. Keep him away from boxers/runners/grabbers. Upcoming match with In-Jin Chi should be highly entertaining.

Joan Guzman (22-0): Very strong bull.

Steven Luevano (26-0): Former top amateur southpaw improving, but lacks power.

Roberto Guerrero (13-0-1): Tall southpaw coming off win over Enrique Sanchez.

Cuauhtemoc Vargas (12-0-1): Young solid all around entertaining fighter.



SUPER-BANTAMWEIGHTS
Oscar Larios: Entertaining fighter on very good win streak since last loss to Jorrin, which he avenged by KO1. Outworked the skilled Hussein to retain title. Coming off good bout with McCullough.

Israel Vazquez: Lost to Larios, but wins over Julio and Valbuena have earned him another shot. Just scored KO5 over then 14-0-1 Simonyan.

Mahyar Monshipour: Entertaining fighter has KO win over 41-2 Sithyodthong.

Up-and-comers
Jose Aguiniga (26-0) Improving, but protected and questionable power.

Ricardo Cordoba (24-0): Young, developing southpaw just scored a KO12 over then 8-0 Mesa, who died afterwards as a result of brain injuries.



BANTAMWEIGHTS
Rafael Marquez: Entertaining, pound-for-pound great can box and really punch. Coming off beautiful KO win over Ruiz and very competitive match with Pastrana.

Veeraphol Sahaprom: Unbeaten since 1996 when he lost in a title bid in only his fifth pro bout; could be the test for Marquez.

Jhonny Gonzalez: Showed his toughness and serious power in coming off the deck to score an impressive KO2 over previously unbeaten Elizondo.

Up-and-comers
Vladimir Sidenko (17-0): Not much of a puncher, but a good boxer.

Silence Mabuza (17-0): Power-puncher is untested.

Steve Molitor (19-0): Southpaw coming off win over Dianzo, but he lacks power.

Gabriel Elizondo (17-1): Suffered first loss to Gonzalez, but no shame in that. He came to fight and was entertaining in the loss, decking Gonzalez.

Mike Oliver (6-0): Hasn't fought since 2003.



SUPER-FLYWEIGHTS
Martin Castillo: Win over then undefeated Munoz and former 112 champ Morel show he is the class of the division.

Fernando Montiel: Still a talented fighter despite loss to Johnson. Scheduled match with Hernandez.

Ivan Hernandez: Coming off KO8 over aged Johnson.

Katsushige Kawashima: Coming off KO1 rematch win over Tokuyama, who was unbeaten since 1997, and controversial win over Navarro.

Jose Navarro: Proved his championship mettle in ridiculous loss to Kawashima. Navarro was completely in control, landed the greater number of punches, and cut Kawashima over both eyes. He deserved the win. Kawashima only occasionally landed a good solid punch that made the crowd go nuts. Talk about odd scoring: 120-109 for Navarro, overruled by 115-113 and 115-114 for Kawashima. Jose needs to snap his punches more though and use his left to the body more.

Up-and-comer
Luis Maldonado (30-0): Needs to step it up but appears to have some pop.



FLYWEIGHTS
Lorenzo Parra: Close win over former undefeated Morel to win the title. Parra can box and has some pop. Recently defeated former champ Choi.

Vic Darchinyan: At 28, hard-punching southpaw just stepped it up with KO11 win over former undefeated IBF champ Pacheco.

Pongsaklek Wonjongkam: At 55-2, he's the most experienced flyweight, and this WBC champion southpaw has not been defeated since 1996. Scheduled match with excellent 108 champ Jorge Arce.

Rosendo Alvarez: Coming off draw with Burgos and win over Mendoza, but couldn't make weight so lost title at 108.

Up-and-comers
Brian Viloria (16-0): Good power and entertaining; moving along nicely.

Brahim Asloum (17-0): Former 2000 gold medalist moving along but no power. Coming off comfortable decision win over veteran Arambulet, his first serious test.

Omar Narvaez (18-0-2): 29-year-old southpaw needs to get in the mix with the top champs.

Ron Siler (0-0): U.S. Olympian will make a good pro. He's fast and strong and a good boxer.



LIGHT-FLYWEIGHTS
Jorge Arce: Good boxer coming off KO win over Castro. Won title with KO win over Choi, who defeated Sorjaturong (who defeated Gonzalez). Arce's last loss was in a great 1999 fight with Carbajal. Arce was leading on the cards but stopped in the 11th round.

Beibis Mendoza: Four close bouts with Alvarez demonstrates he's always a threat. Upcoming bout with Vasquez.

Victor Burgos: Coming off KO win over Sanchez and draw with Alvarez, but so-so results before that.

Up-and-comer
Roberto Vasquez (18-1): Hasn't lost since pro debut. Scheduled bout with Beibis Mendoza will show what he has.



MINIMUMWEIGHTS
Ivan Calderon (21-0): Undefeated southpaw lacks power but has wins over Sanchez, Cardenas, and Leyva. Easily outboxed Fajardo.

Eagle Kyowa (13-1): Beat Aguirre for the WBC crown but lost it to Bustos after shoulder dislocated. He's a good fighter.

Up-and-comer
Rodel Mayol (19-0): Good power for a little guy.

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