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Thread: Judah-mayweather Prefight Press & Predictions

  1. #1

    Judah-mayweather Prefight Press & Predictions

    Baldomir an appetizer for Judah before Mayweather?

    By Dan Rafael

    While undisputed welterweight champ Zab Judah is set to defend his crown against Carlos Baldomir of Argentina, few wanted to discuss the matchup because it is viewed largely as a walkover.

    Judah (34-2, 25 KOs) and Baldomir (41-9-6, 12 KOs) will fight at Madison Square Garden's 5,000-seat Theater in New York on Jan. 7 (Showtime, 9 p.m. ET/PT). But during a teleconference with boxing reporters this week to hype the fight, nearly all of the discussion centered on whom Judah would face after his expected victory over the obscure Baldomir, a typical WBC mandatory challenger with few credentials, little power or speed, and a barren resume.

    Judah (left) claims he's focused on Baldomir (right) but admits to coveting a bout with Floyd Mayweather.

    Judah's promoter, Don King, has been negotiating an April 8 HBO PPV mega-fight with Floyd Mayweather promoter Bob Arum. It's not done yet, and Judah must defeat Baldomir first, but to Judah the winning part of the equation is a foregone conclusion.

    "I am looking to come in and blow him away," said Judah, a Brooklyn native who will be fighting in front of his hometown fans.

    Judah insisted he won't overlook Baldomir because a victory is his ticket to a major money fight.

    "I would never overlook Baldomir because he is the person coming in who could spoil all the stuff," Judah said. "I am most focused on him because of the Mayweather fight. I am looking to go in there and show to the world that I am the best. I am not going to predict [a first-round knockout], but that is what I am working on. I am looking to go in there and come out in spectacular fashion. I am home. I have got to give him a good New York welcome."

    So once Judah gets done with Baldomir, he wants Mayweather, a junior welterweight titlist who is regarded by many as the pound-for-pound best fighter in the world.

    "I am looking for the big matchup and a big showdown with 'Pretty Girl,'" Judah said, mocking Mayweather's "Pretty Boy" moniker. "Floyd Mayweather is a very fast fighter, a very cocky fighter. I possess speed and power. Everyone knows that Floyd Mayweather is not a very hard puncher.

    “* * * * Right now, the reason why the fight has not been made is because of what Floyd Mayweather knows. He knows that a fight with a Zab Judah with eight-ounce boxing gloves on is not going to be a pretty fight for him. ”
    — Zab Judah

    "I have boxed him a lot of times. We sparred back in the Olympic camp [before the 1996 Games], we sparred recently. It is nothing new. Floyd knows my power. Floyd knows what I bring as far as skills and speed. Right now, the reason why the fight has not been made is because of what Floyd Mayweather knows. He knows that a fight with a Zab Judah with eight-ounce boxing gloves on is not going to be a pretty fight for him."

    Judah, is aware, however, that the Mayweather fight is no lock even if he beats Baldomir.

    "We had a good meeting the other day and it is looking really, really good for April 8 right now," Judah said.

    "I've got my fingers crossed. But Mayweather has got this whole thing about money. He wants to be the dominator of the money and he wants a non-title fight because he has the pay-per-view date. He wants to have a non-title fight so he can get all the money. If I am happy and I walk away with what I want, it's going to happen. I don't have a problem with anything."

    Mayweather, Jr., left, (seen here with this dad Floyd Sr.), lacks a power punch, Judah said.

    A Judah-Mayweather fight would match two of the fastest, cockiest fighters in the sport. They've been friends for years but their relationship has grown frosty over the past several months as they've trash talked each other knowing they eventually might face each other in the ring.

    "He crossed the line of disrespect," Judah said. "There ain't going to be no nice guys out there. There is a lot of money involved and both of us need it. This is the fight the world wants to see, but first I have to annihilate Mr. Carlos Baldomir."

    Around the ring

    Ruiz-Valuev: Heavyweight titlist John Ruiz, ignored by the American TV networks and unloved by most boxing fans, is in Berlin to defend his title Saturday night against 7-foot, 330-pound German-based Russian Nicolay Valuev, who became the mandatory challenger by virtue of a disputed decision victory against slick American Larry Donald on Oct. 1.
    "I'm fighting him because he's the No. 1 contender," Ruiz said before heading to Germany. "I don't pick and choose my opponents like [Vitali] Klitschko. Valuev deserves the title shot. He's earned it. I'm going halfway around the world to fight a giant in his backyard because I'm a true world champion."

    When we last saw Ruiz (41-5-1, 29 KOs), he had lost his title to James Toney in April, but that was only until Toney tested positive for steroids in his post-fight drug test. At that point, the result of the fight was changed to a no decision and Ruiz was given his belt back by the WBA.

    AP Photo/Markus Schreiber
    Valuev (right) towers over the six-foot-two Ruiz, who might regret comparing his foe's head to the size of a Volkwagen.

    Now Ruiz faces another difficult fight against Valuev (42-0, 31 KOs), whose size is breathtaking -- he steps over the top rope when he enters the ring.

    Valuev said at a recent press conference that he planned to neutralize Ruiz's usual clutching tactics.

    "I won't give him the chance," said Valuev, 32, a former basketball player and discus thrower.

    "I always use my height -- I see no reason it should be different this time," said Valuev, nicknamed "The Beast from the East."

    Ruiz, who is 6-2, 240 pounds, said he is not concerned about the massive size difference.

    "He's got a head the size of a Volkswagen," Ruiz said.

    "I can't miss hitting him. I'm not worried about his height or reach advantage. I trained to fight and will come to fight. My game plan is to take the fight to him, which will neutralize any height or reach advantage."

    “* * * * We plan to bring pieces of the giant Russian back to the United States. We're going to give them out as Christmas presents. ”
    — John Ruiz, on why he arrived in Germany with 28 pieces of luggage. He's making reference to Nicolay Valuev, his foe Saturday.

    American fighters often have a very difficult time winning decisions in Germany, which Ruiz knows. Fellow titlist Lamon Brewster didn't have to worry about the scorecards when he knocked out his German mandatory challenger, Luan Krasniqi, there in September.

    "I know there have been questionable decisions [in Germany] but what can I do?" said Ruiz, 33, who has scored only one knockout in his last nine fights going back to 1999.

    "I can only do my best."

    Knockout or not, Ruiz sounded confident that he would win and return to the United States for a unification fight that he has coveted.

    When a German reporter asked Ruiz if it was true that he had arrived in Berlin with 28 pieces of luggage, and if so, why, Ruiz responded, "We plan to bring pieces of the giant Russian back to the United States. We're going to give them out as Christmas presents."

    Gatti update: As a precaution, New Jersey boxing authorities have asked that Arturo Gatti undergo additional medical testing than the norm required to obtain a boxing license in the state before his next fight on Jan. 28.

    AP Photo/Donna Connor
    Gatti, left, has endured -- and delivered -- plenty of punishment. Here's a shot from his epic trilogy with Micky Ward.

    Gatti, 33, is scheduled to move up to welterweight and face Denmark's Thomas Damgaard on HBO at Boardwalk Hall in Atlantic City, N.J.

    Gatti's annual New Jersey boxing license is up for renewal. Normally, fighters must undergo various medical tests, including an eye exam, CAT scan, an EKG for the heart and blood work, before being relicensed in New Jersey. However, because Gatti, a two-division champion, has been in so many grueling fights and received such a brutal beating in losing his junior welterweight title to Mayweather in June, New Jersey authorities want him to also submit to an MRI and a complete neurological exam.

    Promoter Main Events said Gatti is happy to comply with the request.

    "This is strictly precautionary," Main Events vice president Carl Moretti told ESPN.com. "The Mayweather fight was a tough fight, and the New Jersey officials are looking out for Arturo's safety, as are we. There is no hesitation whatsoever from anyone to take these additional tests, not from the Gatti camp, Gatti himself or Main Events. We will oblige wholeheartedly."

    As a testament to the brutally of Gatti's career, he and friendly rival Micky Ward -- who waged an unforgettable trilogy in 2002-03 at a video game-like pace -- will grace the cover of a real video game. An action shot from one of their bouts will adorn the new "Fight Night Round 3" for PlayStation 2 and Xbox systems, EA Sports announced. The game is due out in February.

    Chavez-Barrera: Unified junior lightweight champ Marco Antonio Barrera will make the leap to lightweight to challenge for Jesus Chavez's title on March 25 on HBO, Richard Schaefer of Golden Boy Promotions told ESPN.com.

    After several weeks of negotiations, "both fighters have agreed on the terms, so it is just a matter of getting the contracts signed," Schaefer said.

    The fight will be at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas.

    Schaefer said the rumors that Barrera was insisting on making Chavez defend his belt at a catchweight below the lightweight limit of 135 pounds are not true.

    "Barrera is not asking for a catchweight like some people are saying," Schaefer said. "There is no language like that. This is a 135-pound fight."

    Schaefer said the HBO undercard would either feature junior lightweight titlist Jorge Barrios (44-2-1, 32 KOs), possibly in a mandatory defense against southpaw Janos Nagy (23-0, 14 KOs) of Hungary, or former junior middleweight titlist Kassim Ouma (22-2-1, 14 KOs). Barrios and Ouma both have interim bouts before March.

    Barrera (61-4, 42 KOs) unified 130-pound titles with a lopsided decision against Robbie Peden on Sept. 17. If Barrera defeats Chavez he would become the first Mexican fighter to win titles in four weight classes. He has won titles at 122, 126 and 130 pounds.

    Chavez (43-3, 30 KOs), a former junior lightweight champ, won his lightweight belt on the Barrera-Peden undercard. In a tragic outcome, Chavez stopped Leavander Johnson in the 11th round, and Johnson died a few days later from a brain injury suffered in the bout.

    Margarito-Gomez: Although few fighters are willing to get in the ring with rugged welterweight titlist Antonio Margarito, Manuel Gomez is more than willing.

    Gomez (28-10-2, 20 KOs) has been waiting patiently for a well-deserved title shot, and he's getting it Feb. 18 at the Aladdin Hotel-Casino in Las Vegas in the main event of a Top Rank pay-per-view card.

    Margarito and Gomez were set to fight Nov. 12 on the Vitali Klitschko-Hasim Rahman card that was canceled because of Klitschko's knee injury and subsequent retirement. But promoter Bob Arum salvaged the fight by building the February PPV card around it.

    "Vitali Klitschko won't be saving you in this one, Margarito," Gomez -- who is 10-0-2 in his last 12 fights -- said during this week's news conference to announce the card.

    When Margarito (32-4, 23 KOs) came to the podium he responded, "I'm going to show, when I fight Gomez, why the other guys don't want to fight me. I am going to put on a spectacular fight."

    Margarito is one of the roughest fighters in the world from 140 to 154 pounds, and Arum has had a difficult time finding marquee names willing to face him.

    "No one, including [Oscar] De La Hoya, [Floyd] Mayweather, [Fernando] Vargas or [Shane] Mosley will fight Margarito -- all were contacted and all declined," Arum said.

    "I went through the same thing when we had Marvin Hagler. No one wanted to fight Hagler, but we kept him fighting and eventually the big fights happened. I expect the same for Margarito."

    Margarito will be making his sixth title defense and is coming off a sensational performance in April, when he thrashed Kermit Cintron in a fifth-round TKO victory.

    Gomez's record is a little misleading because he lost three of his first four fights. However, he owns victories against Kofi Jantuah and Miguel Angel Gonzalez and gave Shane Mosley the toughest fight of Mosley's lightweight championship reign before being stopped in the 11th round.

    Also on the Feb. 18 "Real Warriors" card: Junior flyweight titlist Brian Viloria (18-0, 12 KOs) will make his first defense against former strawweight champ Jose Antonio Aguirre (33-4-1, 20 KOs); strawweight champ Ivan "Iron Boy" Calderon (24-0, 5 KOs) will defend against an opponent to be named; and junior welterweight prospect Julio Cesar Chavez Jr. (23-0, 18 KOs) will fight an opponent to be determined.

    Perfect gift: Looking for a holiday gift for the fight fan in your life? With the financial backing of promoter Lou DiBella, photographer Teddy Blackburn has published "In the Other Corner: A Tribute to Gerald McClellan."

    John Gichigi/ALLSPORT
    In 1995, Nigel Benn (right) beat McClellan with a 10th-round knockout. Shortly after the fight, McClellan collapsed.

    The $50 book packed with Blackburn's boxing photos -- ringside action shots as well as candid photos of boxing subjects -- and all of the proceeds will go to help McClellan, the former middleweight champ who was severely brain damaged in a 1995 fight and now requires 24-hour-a-day care from his sisters. Blackburn has visited McClellan regularly and helped raise money for him since the injury.

    Checks for the book should be made out to Fighters Need a Hand and sent to Blackburn at 2985 Botanical Square, Suite 6E, Bronx, N.Y. 10458. You can also e-mail Blackburn about the book at Tblackburn@aol.com. Contributions for McClellan also can be sent to the Gerald McClellan Trust Fund at the McClellan Trust Fund, c/o Fifth Third Bank, P.O. Box 120, Freeport, IL 61032.

    "Many fighters have suffered injustices and injuries both inside and outside of the ring," Blackburn said.

    "This book is a tribute to a true champion. The 'G-Man' gave the fight fans exactly what they wanted for seven straight years. Now is our opportunity to give back to a fighter who gave us his all and suffered life-altering injuries in the ring. If you're looking to help anyone this holiday season, this is definitely a worthy cause."

    Brock back: Heavyweight contender Calvin Brock (27-0, 21 KOs), a 2000 U.S. Olympian, has been added to the HBO PPV undercard of the Fernando Vargas-Shane Mosley junior middleweight showdown on Feb. 25 at Mandalay Bay in Las Vegas. Brock, who outpointed David Bostice last month, will face Zuri Lawrence.

    Lawrence (20-10-4, 0 KOs) is a crafty boxer who is coming off a unanimous decision victory against fringe contender Jameel McCline in October for what is his career-best victory.

    Brock also defeated McCline on a unanimous decision for the best victory of his career in April.

    There had been talk that Brock would face David Tua in January on HBO or on Showtime in May but Brock was hesitant and neither date was set.


    Prospect watch: Welterweight prospect Joel "Love Child" Julio (25-0, 22 KOs), who makes his Showtime debut Jan. 6 in Chicago on "ShoBox: The New Generation," has found an opponent for the fight. He will face Robert Kamya (15-5, 4 KOs), who is coming off a career-best 12-round decision victory against Alex Bunema in August. Bantamweight Raul Martinez (12-0, 9 KOs), another of Main Events' top prospects, will face Andres Ledesma (13-1-1, 8 KOs) in the opening bout.

    Quick hits: Featherweight Rocky Juarez will take a second consecutive untelevised fight when he faces an opponent to be determined Jan. 21 in Louisiana. Juarez (24-1, 17 KOs), a 2000 U.S. Olympic silver medalist and a crowd pleaser, lost a highly competitive and exciting fight to Humberto Soto in August, and has since disappeared from the HBO and Showtime radar screens. But Main Events is intent upon keeping Juarez sharp so he will be ready for a significant TV bout. He knocked out Reynaldo Hurtado in the third round last week in Corpus Christi, Texas, in his first fight since the upset loss to Soto.

    • Heavyweight contender Juan Carlos Gomez, 34, of Cuba has tested positive for cocaine and faces a two-year ban, the Associated Press reported. Gomez (40-1, 33 KOs) is a former cruiserweight champion based in Germany after defecting from Cuba. Gomez was tested Oct. 15 after a 10-round decision victory against former heavyweight champ Oliver McCall.

    • Walt Lambert's Northeast Promotions continues quietly to sign quality talent. The New Paltz, N.Y.-based company, which recently signed prospects Delvin Rodriguez, Carlos Quintana and Michael Katsidis, added another one this week in welterweight Shamone Alvarez (12-0, 8 KOs) of Atlantic City, N.J. Alvarez made an impression in his two appearances on Showtime's "ShoBox" series, a blistering first-round knockout of Mohammed Kayongo last year and a fourth-round TKO of Jose Medina in February. "This is my kind of kid," said Northeast matchmaker Ron Katz. "He has a fan-friendly style and can punch like hell."

    • Middleweights Jimmy Lange (26-2-1, 17 KOs) and Joey Gilbert (10-1, 7 KOs), rivals during the first season of the "The Contender," will face each other in a 12-round rematch on Feb. 18 in Fairfax, Va., Lange's home turf. Gilbert upset Lange with a five-round decision to eliminate him from the NBC reality boxing series, which has since moved to ESPN. "I entered 'The Contender' for one reason and one reason only, and that was to win it all," Lange said. "Losing to Joey -- the best athlete on the show -- was a huge disappointment, but getting a rematch … in my hometown is a great opportunity for redemption."

    • Promoter Artie Pelullo of Banner Promotions came on board as a co-promoter for junior lightweight Antonio Davis, joining Brian Young of Prize Fight Boxing. Davis (19-1, 9 KOs), an Atlanta resident who is trained by Ronnie Shields, is on a 15-fight winning streak. He will next fight on Feb. 3 in Detroit in the main event of ESPN2's "Friday Night Fights."

    • Although the most significant super middleweight on the schedule is Showtime's unification bout between champions Jeff Lacy and Joe Calzaghe on March 4, there is another 168-pound title fight of note next month. Mikkel Kessler (36-0, 27 KOs) of Denmark, who briefly was an option for Lacy's last fight, defends his piece of the title Jan. 14 in Denmark against former titlist Eric Lucas (38-6-3, 14 KOs) of Canada. Kessler is coming off of a June lopsided decision victory against former titlist Anthony Mundine in Australia.

    • Cruiserweight contender Dale Brown (35-4-1, 22 KOs), who many believe was robbed of a decision when he faced O'Neil Bell for a vacant title in May, could be headed for another title shot. Brown will face Felix Cora Jr. (17-0-2, 9 KOs) in a title eliminator on March 24 on ESPN2's "Friday Night Fights." Brown stayed sharp on Thursday night, shutting out journeyman Dennis McKinney for a six-round decision victory on the untelevised portion of the Samuel Peter-Robert Hawkins pay-per-view card in Hollywood, Fla.

    Quotable: "I want Jermain next. I want him as soon as possible. It's time Jermain. It's time you served your mandatory sentence. The top two pay-per-view stars of 2005 are also the two best fighters in the middleweight division -- me and Jermain. The fight is a natural. This is the fight the fans want most. Act like a champion and fight me. Don't let your promoter's lack of confidence in your abilities influence your reign as champion." -- mandatory middleweight challenger Winky Wright, on his desire to fight champion Jermain Taylor as soon as possible.

    Dan Rafael is the boxing writer for ESPN.com.:rolleyes

  2. #2


    This is one of the few future match ups I'm really looking forward to. I think this will be a helluva fight. Judah seems much more focused in the ring than he used to be. But even so, I'll go with Floyd by UD.


  3. #3


    Zab Judah and the Brash Crew
    by Rick Folstad from Sweet Science

    Next time the fight talk turns to egos, throw in the name Zab “Super” Judah. He belongs up there with the rest of the Brash Crew, guys like Bernard Hopkins, James Toney and “Pretty Boy” Floyd Mayweather, Jr.

    Next to these guys, Terrell Owens sounds like one of the Osmonds.

    You don’t hear any of that “aw, shucks,” or “I just got lucky” talk from this crowd. No one is taking the humble road to greatness, ducking the bright lights and passing all the credit on to mom and dad, clean living and the best working corner in the fight game.

    But that’s all right. When you’re as good as Judah is – shouldering your way toward the top of the best pound-for-pound list – you’ve earned the right to be a little arrogant. In fact, it’s probably healthy. Sells tickets and makes for good copy. And that’s Judah. Cocky, confident and brash, a guy at the top of his career looking for a few more dragons to slay.

    The undisputed welterweight champ, Judah (34-2, 25 KOs) defends his WBC title on Jan. 7 at Madison Square Garden (SHOWTIME) against the WBC’s No. 1 contender, Carlos Baldomir (41-9-6, 12 KOs) of Argentina. An unknown who doesn’t have a jarring punch or a legendary chin, Baldomir’s only claim to fame is that he hasn’t lost in his last 19 fights, though he did rack up a couple draws. That’s not the kind of fight history that keeps Judah up at night. So if he’s glancing over Baldomir’s shoulder and looking down the road at a tentative fight against Mayweather in early April, you can’t blame him. All you can do is warn him.

    ”I’m looking for the big match-up and a big showdown with “Pretty Girl” (Floyd) Mayweather,” Judah said on a recent national conference call promoting his fight with Baldomir. “And I want to make it look good.”

    The “Pretty Girl” shot is Judah’s way of firing back at Mayweather, who he says has crossed the line of disrespect with some of the colorful talk they’ve been swapping.

    Judah insists he’s not looking past Baldomir, but he is. Aside from a possible fight with Mayweather, the biggest incentive for him in this fight might be where they’re holding it. He trains and lives in Florida, but he’s from Brooklyn, and he wants to make the Baldomir fight a special homecoming.

    ”The event of this fight is Zab Judah coming home to New York City,” he said. “We want to give (Baldomir) his 30 seconds of fame, because that is probably how long the fight will last.”

    Baldomir must be wondering what he got himself into.

    ”I’ve been (working with) two dudes,” Judah said when asked about his sparring partners. “I’ve knocked out about eight sparring partners already, world champions and all. I am not going to use anybody’s name because I am not trying to embarrass anybody.”

    Right. He sounds ready.

    "My speed and power is nothing to play with,” he went on. “A lot of guys look at it and take it for a joke. But you see time and time again, they hit the floor like dust.”

    You wonder if he writes this stuff down ahead of time.

    Asked about his second-round knockout loss to Kostya Tszyu back in November 2001, Judah said he always knew he would bounce back.

    ”To once be on top and then to lose everything and come back and get it again, it’s a beautiful thing,” he said. “It’s not that you’re a bum or a garbage fighter with no chin. If you get caught, it can happen to anyone. Anyone. Muhammad Ali was knocked out. Joe Louis was knocked out. Mike Tyson was knocked out. It’s how you come back. Myself, I came back with flying colors.”

    If the Mayweather fight somehow falls through, Judah – who won a rematch with Cory Spinks early this year after losing to him last year for only his second loss – said he’d look forward to a rematch with Tszyu.

    “[Tszyu] has a personal invitation from Zab Judah, and any time he feels ready to step up to the plate, I’m ready to show the world that that was a fluke,” Judah said of that loss four years ago. “I showed everybody with Cory Spinks when I came back. I am ready for Kostya Tszyu.”

    Or Mayweather.

    Just line ‘em up.

  4. #4


    If it’s Lonely at The Top, How Does it Feel at The Bottom?* Zab Judah Knows
    The Glassjaw Chronicles by Thomas Gerbasi from Max Boxing

    In his head, Zab Judah has probably prepared for this moment a million times - headlining at Madison Square Garden. Sure, it’s only the small room at MSG - The Theater – but it’s that type of stuff that keeps you hungry for when you get your big moment in the big room.

    (And truth be told, when you’re a fighter, you don’t say, ‘hey man, I’m fighting at the Theater;’ you say, ‘I’m fighting at the Garden.’ It’s telling the truth and lying at the same time, but its okay, it’s only a white lie, and we can let it slide.)

    Yet strangely enough, Judah - the welterweight champion of the world - has only fought twice in his home city, winning both bouts by TKO. He returns here on January 7th, defending his title against Carlos Baldomir, a belated crowning for the city’s most decorated fighter; a celebration to say ‘yeah, we can still produce world class fighters in New York City.’

    But like all such plans, nothing is that simple. When Judah steps through the ropes, he will expect to face Baldomir, but in reality he is facing the expectations of a boxing world eager to see him either soar or fall. Those who wish to see him fall will do so because they like to see all things New York fail. We’re too brash, too cocky, too ‘in ya face’, too overhyped. Those who want to see him succeed do so for a number of their own selfish reasons: the New York fans want to see one of their own rise to the top; the media that hyped Judah since he was just out of diapers want to be proven prophetic; and the power brokers of the game want to see Judah in a defining fight that will fill everyone’s pockets with more filthy lucre.

    And looming over the proceedings even more prominently will be the man Judah hopes to make his millions with later in 2006 – Floyd Mayweather Jr. Even now, a month before the bout, the co-featured personality in all mentions of Judah-Baldomir is someone who isn’t even putting on gloves that night. Judah – at least publicly - is well aware of who he is really fighting that night in January.

    “I would never overlook Baldomir because he is the person coming in who could spoil all the stuff (with Mayweather),” said Judah in a recent media teleconference. “I am most focused on him because of the Mayweather fight. I am looking to go in there and show to the world that I am the best.”

    For all intents and purposes, “Pretty Boy Floyd” is the best fighter in the world today. It’s a title Judah badly wants to put next to his name and one many felt he was going to have back when he was dazzling the boxing world BK – and for those not paying attention, that’s not Brooklyn, it’s Before Kostya.

    Before November 3rd, 2001, the crown had been fitted and the red carpet pressed and rolled out for the arrival of ‘Super Judah’ on the world stage as boxing’s best. He just had to beat the longtime champion, Kostya Tszyu, in their unification bout in Las Vegas.

    And we all know what happened then.

    After a strong first round, Judah got cocky in the second and got caught. Just like that, the unbeaten record was gone and the talk of Judah being one of the best in the world disappeared. Instead, he was an overhyped, spoiled punk, who folded when faced with adversity, and who took his frustrations out on referee Jay Nady instead of looking in the mirror.

    It was a hard lesson to learn for someone just past his 24th birthday. He was washed up.

    Or so the critics thought…

    The Judah reclamation project began in 2002, with a win over tough Argentinean Omar Weis. Once promoter Don King got involved, the ball really started rolling, with Judah’s only loss over the next seven fights being a decision defeat to welterweight champ Cory Spinks in 2004 – a loss avenged via ninth round TKO in February of this year.

    Along the way, there were still bumps in the road, as he almost clowned away a decision to ancient Rafael Pineda in May of 2004, but more often than not, what has emerged in the four years since the loss to Tszyu was a more mature version of Judah in the ring.

    “To once be on top, and then to lose everything and come back and get it again, it is a beautiful thing,” said Judah, and for all the criticism directed his way for whatever reasons, valid or not, the fact that he put his career back together shows a fortitude and determination many didn’t think he had.

    Which brings us back to Mayweather.

    Without question, the Grand Rapids prodigy has talent seen once every 25 years, if even that. His work ethic matches that talent, and he’s even shown the heart and chin of a champion in two bouts with Jose Luis Castillo and in a blowout of Diego Corrales. But would Mayweather – who is fond of flashing huge wads of cash and displaying the spoils of his labors – be able to take short money and fight on undercards against no-name opponents if he had lost along the way? Would he be able to focus, knowing that one more defeat against one of these non-descript foes would effectively end his career?

    So take away Judah’s questionable chin, Mayweather’s amazing talent, the sparring sessions that allegedly had “Pretty Boy Floyd” chasing Judah out of the ring, and the out of the ring antics that will no doubt get uglier as the fight approaches and which do neither young man any favors, and boil it down to a one on one battle with nothing to separate the two but their fists.

    Who’s hungrier? Who wants this more? Who has seen what it’s like at the bottom and doesn’t like the smell down there?


    Who knows what it’s like to have the phone stop ringing, for the comp tickets to disappear, and for it to become a necessity to think about what life will actually be like after boxing?


    And who knows how much it hurts to have the word ‘former’ wrapped around your name without a ‘current’ to replace it?

    Yeah, you guessed it.

    Sure, Mayweather’s competitive, and once that bell rings, he’ll be ready to fight, like he always is – in pristine shape. But once boxing’s version of playing the dozens ends, and the two have impressed each other and the fans with their moves, speed, and flash, a fight will begin, and whoever has struggled more will fight harder to win.

    Then again, some will say, ‘well, Carlos Baldomir hasn’t been given any favors during his career,’ there’s a difference, and a huge one. Fighters like Baldomir are tough, and in some cases they’ve come up the hard way through obstacles that would force most to quit. But they’ve never been anointed as boxing’s savior. They’ve never seen and felt what it’s like to be the best in the world and then lose it all. To fall from champion and ‘next big thing’ to over-hyped pretender? That’s a bigger fall than falling from contender to also-ran. And for those champions, they all have one thing in common – they never thought it would happen to them.

    “It can happen to anyone,” said Judah, who knows that firsthand. “It is how you come back and show the world that you are the best. I came back with flying colors.”

    Could Floyd? That may be a question that will never be answered, or one that could get a reply if he steps into a boxing ring with Zab Judah this spring. As for the 28-year-old Brooklynite, with or without his former friend, he will fight on.

    “I am at the point in my career right now where I am going to do big things,” said Judah.

    Even four years past schedule, it may be safe to believe him this time.

  5. #5


    Judah-Mayweather inked!

    Friday, December 23 2005

    By Jason "J-Gon" Gonzalez from Fight News

    An April 8 superfight between WBC/WBA/IBF welterweight champion Zab Judah and WBC super lightweight champion Floyd Mayweather was inked today. According to Team Judah, no venue has been finalized and the bout, which will take place in Las Vegas. The Thomas & Mack Arena was mentioned as a possibility, due to the large seating capacity. Zab's WBC belt will be the only title on the line. The total pot for the fight is 9.5 million, with Judah making $3.5 million.

  6. #6
    Mayweather beats him easy.

  7. #7
    Yay! A fight that matters.
    I'm really interested to see how they deal with eachother's speed. I don't think it's an open and shut case for PBF to win.

  8. #8

    Do NOT buy this fight! - Mayweather vs Judah PPV?!?!?!

    Mayweather vs Judah still set for April....PPV?!?!




    Please help set a record for THE box office disaster of all time.

    (I couldn't hold it in Cliff after we talked about it, not after Pac/Morales 2)

  9. #9
    I'm wit'cha on this one, Dig! Zab blew it ... I was really looking forward to this fight ... Fuh-get-'bout it now ...


    How fucking stupid do they think we are???


  10. #10
    Well, by taking this instead of an actual meaningful fight, then it sure looks bad on Mayweather, which I could care less as he and Zab are of the same ilk in terms of personailty and maturity...though Zab tops ion that department. Hatton, Cotto, Mosley, Margarito all would make more sense and before Zab, then Baldomir for sure. If it happens then I won't even download the fight afterwards, but I'll sure as hell try to protest it all that I can...not that it will really make a difference, but a few people will listen!

  11. #11
    Im so with you Dig.
    In terms of people, I just cant think of two bigger jerk-offs, and I know a lot of scumbags. Seriously, just as Pac-EM was the kind of match-up that showcases all thats great in boxing, this shows all thats awful. I would love to see a boycott of this ridiculous PPV buy, but as it is, I just dont see it selling that well anyway. I hope not at least.

  12. #12


    If they want to fight, bump it back to HBO Championship Boxing. Would love to see it there for "free". But to pay more? No way. What a joke.
    DIg, count me in on the boycott.

  13. #13
    after seeing one of PBF's recent interviews he realy looks like a jerk for taking this fight. all he spoke of in the interview was cementing his place in history by fighting the best. it is true that morales lost his last fight before mannyII but he was fighting a rematch in which he was victorious the first time. thats as far as i will go in comparing judah to eric morales.

    judah looked like a fool in his last fight. now he gets PPV dough against pretty boy? if he could only throw 6 punches a round against carlos baldomir whats he going to offer up to floyd? of course he always has his trusty stool to toss at him.

  14. #14
    I'd watch the fight for free even though I disagree with the premise. Judah BLEW IT AGAIN & now his shit talkin nemesis wants to "attempt" to reward him with a payday?

    In a dry landscape of fights, one may argue that this would be do or die for Judah and may be interesting is he was indeed desperate but there is no shortage of matchups right now. PPV for this is a complete insult. Even my oft money wasting ass will not pony up for this crap.

  15. #15


    HBO is doing the exact opposite of what they said they would do with their boxing this year by putting this on ppv.
    No way will I pay to see it.

  16. #16

    The awful truth

    In Murky Alphabet Soup, Loser Is Still a Champion

    Published: January 22, 2006
    As if boxing did not have enough strange twists, a fighter who lost a bout remains a champion and the winner may be awarded one title he did not fight for.

    It all involves Zab Judah's loss by unanimous decision to Carlos Baldomir at Madison Square Garden on Jan. 7.

    Even though he lost, Judah remains the International Boxing Federation champion because Baldomir did not pay sanctioning fees for its belt. Baldomir did not initially pay sanctioning fees for the World Boxing Association belt, either. Even though he has since paid the fee, the W.B.A. is hedging about whether to give him its belt.

    About the only thing not in question is that Baldomir is the World Boxing Council champion.

    Judah (34-3, 25 knockouts) was the undisputed welterweight champion before he lost to Baldomir (42-9-6, 12 knockouts) in an upset. Baldomir was the W.B.C.'s mandatory challenger, but because he refused to pay the sanctioning fees to the I.B.F. and W.B.A., he was awarded only the W.B.C. title at the time.

    Soon after the fight, in a message on the Web site of Baldomir's promoter, Sycuan Ringside Promotions, its president, Glenn Quiroga, said that Sycuan was "prepared and would welcome the opportunity to write checks to both the I.B.F. and the W.B.A. in the amount of the appropriate sanctioning fees if they want to recognize Carlos Baldomir as their welterweight world champion as well."

    After Baldomir defeated Judah, Gilberto Mendoza Jr., the executive director of the W.B.A., said that Baldomir was not the W.B.A. welterweight champion. Later, though, Michael Marley, a consultant for Sycuan, paid the W.B.A. the $3,000 sanctioning fee to acquire the belt. In recent days, though, the W.B.A. has had second thoughts about awarding Baldomir its championship.

    Sycuan also contacted the I.B.F. about naming Baldomir champion in exchange for a sanctioning fee, but its president, Marian Muhammad, refused.

    Ron Scott Stevens, chairman of the New York State Athletic Commission, said that sanctioning fees should be paid before the bout.

    "Common sense tells us that the intention to fight for a title should be made known prior to a bout, and the sanctioning fee should be paid prior to the bout as well," Stevens said. "Anything else smacks as patently unfair."

    Bobby Goodman, a licensed matchmaker for Don King, said Baldomir signed a contract only to fight for Judah's W.B.C. title, a point that should disqualify him from receiving the W.B.A. belt.

    "They asked me to only make the fight for the W.B.C. championship," Goodman said. "I asked if he was sure he wanted to do that, and Michael Marley, an attorney who works for the promoter, made sure that I only put the W.B.C. title in the contract. Maybe he thought that his guy didn't have a chance. Why pay $6,000" - the amount in sanctioning fees - "if you don't think your guy has a shot?"

    Marley said he did not bring up fighting for the I.B.F. and W.B.A. titles. "Judah had three belts, and we had none, so we were happy to take - we weren't in control," Marley said. "Maybe we should have asked to fight for the other belts, but we were happy to fight for the W.B.C. championship."

    Judah kept the I.B.F. belt because Baldomir would not pay 5 percent of his $100,000 purse - 3 percent for the sanctioning fee and 2 percent for the I.B.F.'s pension plan for a total of $5,000 - to the I.B.F. He also declined to submit to a second weigh-in the morning of the fight.

    "I know it's a little strange that Zab is still the champion, but those are the rules," said Lindsey Tucker, the I.B.F.'s championship chairman.

    Nevertheless, The Ring magazine now lists Baldomir as its welterweight champion.

    "If you're the champion and you get beat, the fighter who wins is the new champion," said Nigel Collins, the editor in chief of The Ring. "It's very straightforward. We offer fighters an alternative, and we don't strip them of their belts, and we don't charge sanctioning fees. It's very simple."

  17. #17

    Re: The awful truth

    i wonder if the WBA cashed that 3k check. if they did and are now witholding the belt they may have strapped themselves over a barrel.

    baldomirs victory over judah and recognition by THE RING is good enough for me. if judah starts going around acting like he is champ he becomes even a bigger fool. judah should just hand baldomir the belts on his own, pay whatever bull shit santioning fees need to be paid for both party's on the stipulation that baldomir give him an imediate rematch.

  18. #18

    Blame HBO not HBO PPV

    To be fair, while the Judah-Mayweather, Jr. fight is not PPV quality in my eyes and for most of those on this board, at least PPV gives us a choice to buy/pass and does not take away a World Championship Boxing date or a Boxing After Dark date (which HBO has vowed will be steeped up this year). We don't have to pay for PPV, but we do pay for HBO (for those who subscribe). I was more upset at Mayweather-Bruseles in the past and the upcoming Miguel Cotto-Gianluca Branco (this is total crap! What does this fight prove???) coming up because this takes away an HBO date for a Ricardo Torres, Zahir Raheem, Thomas Ulrich, etc. and I'm only buying HBO for boxing. They need to step up regular HBO, and I could care less what they show on HBO PPV because I can always pass and watch the next week.


  19. #19

    Re: Blame HBO not HBO PPV

    Nigel Collins, the only voice of reason in this belt fiasco. Sanctioning fees seem more like extortion than a "fee". Pay the fee or you don't get recognized as our champion. complete BS. The more names I read in that article, the more I had to cringe, King, marley (shudder)...

    I agree with dnahar, I'm allready paying thru the nose for HBO. I'll wait a week to watch the fight instead of shelling out another 30-50$

  20. #20


    The politics never cease to amaze me. Zab Judah can pickle the IBF belt for all I care. What a delusional, overrated, misguided, clown he is. I hope Mayweather sends him into retirement. Mayweather is no bargain- but at least he can fight.

  21. #21
    Todd Hodgson

    Re: Pathetic

    I'm hoping for a first-round TD due to an accidental-headbutt cut, just to complete the absurdity of this PPV.

  22. #22
    BA Baracus
    It's too bad that this will be PPV, but look on the bright side. We get to see Mayweather/Judah and not Mayweather/Baldomir. Regardless of who beat whom, Mayweather/Judah is still a much more interesting fight.

  23. #23

    "Judah/Mayweather bigger than Oscar/Tito" - King

    I had to post this just to make a chuckle...

    "Judah v Mayweather bigger than Oscar v Tito" - King


  24. #24

    Re: "Judah/Mayweather bigger than Oscar/Tito" - Ki

    chuckle...i wanna puke.

  25. #25
    Todd Hodgson

    Re: "Judah/Mayweather bigger than Oscar/Tito" - Ki

    Love the photo caption.

  26. #26

    Re: "Judah/Mayweather bigger than Oscar/Tito" - Ki

    What a joke of a bout.I think I will rewatch Leonard-Hearns 1 again.Damn I miss those days!

  27. #27

    Re: "Judah/Mayweather bigger than Oscar/Tito" - Ki

    You guys are just chucked full of negativity,ever more so for this fight. 8)

    Really, so Judah got beat. So did Lennox. So did Ali, so did Morales for his supposed bout before Pac whooped him down. Who cares? I didn't see anyone discounting Morales for it.. Matter in fact, someone here said they shed a tear to see him go.

    What better REALISTIC fight out there today has the chance to be much more entertaining, techincal, and a knockdown, dragout fight then this one? Not a single one. PBF all you want, but he's the best pound for pound fighter in the world right now, he's undefeated, he's fighting a guy that presents alot of challenges for him, and is potentially dangerous. I figure all you PBF haters would love to see this one?

    You want Wright/Taylor? Nope. YOu want Hopkins/Taylor, boring. But yet, Gatti's one sided BS fights are entertaining and that's more intresting then this?

    I know for sure I'll be watching. I love watching PBF fight. Forget the personality, forget his personal life, he's a fighter, and a damn good one. I'm a boxing fan, not a personality fan, PBF may not be your out-of-the-ring role model, but he's the best in the world, taking on another good fighter, with a chance for this to be a killer fight. I"ll be watching, you guys can join your wives watching Lifetime movies or somthing, but I can't wait to see this one.

    And please, spare the Hatton talk. Until he comes to the US and steps in the ring with some real 140 pounders.. I don't want to hear it. He hasen't proven anything except he's good in Europe. No disrespect to anyone, and I mean that.. But I really dont understand this boards negativity and dispair towards this fight.. I think it's finally a GOOD matchup, that Mayweather will have to fight for.

  28. #28

    Re: "Judah/Mayweather bigger than Oscar/Tito" - Ki

    Well, watching "Sooper Judah" getting bitchslapped over the second half of a title fight by a guy with almost double digit losses might do a little bit to dampen enthusiasm for seeing him step into the ring with the self-proclaimed best boxer in the game.
    At least Morales went into the tenth with Pacquiao. I'll be royally surprised if Zab makes it to the fourth. PeteLeo.

  29. #29

    Re: "Judah/Mayweather bigger than Oscar/Tito" - Ki

    in short, ditto

    when a fighter racks up more excuses than wins, the picture paints itself

    hatton hasn't run into this problem yet for some reason and won't IMO

  30. #30

    Re: "Judah/Mayweather bigger than Oscar/Tito" - Ki

    only the best in Europe?

    Hatton whupped Tyszu, who whipped the best America had to offer, including Zab.

    It's time for Maywheather to step up to the plate, stop thinking he's worth Tyson money, and fight Hatton in the only real meanignful fight for him currently.

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