For readers in Cleveland, scroll down to the bottom of the page to get all your information on this Saturday’s “War at the Armory” from Brook Park. In addition, there will be more information tomorrow in regard to the ESPN2 “Friday Night Fights” telecast from Cleveland on February 19th.
Entering 2010, there are only a few fights that boxing fans are really clamoring to see and the sports popularity is taking a huge hit for it. Here are five fights that not only boxing fans will love, but also the casual fan.
Floyd Mayweather, Jr. vs. Manny Pacquiao (Welterweight)
Now that the mega fight is officially off, boxing fans can only wonder what if. This fight was a chance for boxing to become significantly relevant again. It is not very often that the two best fighters, by far, in the sport have the possibility to meet each other. Actually, the two best fighters of the past decade. Now all we can do is hope for a resolution and that the two can meet in the fall.
Kelly Pavlik vs. Paul Williams (Middleweight)
The truth is, boxing needs a guy like Kelly Pavlik. The Youngstown native became very popular amongst fans nationally in 2007. He was a blue collar guy, hardworking, resilient and a big puncher. Yes, Pavlik is still all those things, but he needs a win against a quality opponent to stop criticism that now he just looks for easy fights. A victory over Williams would end that criticism. Williams, one of the best pound for pound fighters in boxing, would make it a great, action packed fight, which would definitely get fans buzzing again.
Chad Dawson vs. Bernard Hopkins (Light Heavyweight)
Now that Hopkins will no longer have rematch with Roy Jones Jr., the future Hall of Famer should set his sights on Chad Dawson. Currently, these are the two best fighters at 175 pounds, despite almost being twenty years apart in age. The undefeated Dawson is a skilled puncher, who has never really relied on his power. Hopkins, is arguably the best counter puncher in boxing. It would be a great fight and one that Dawson needs badly to show he is the man at 175 pounds.
David Haye vs. Eddie Chambers vs. Chris Arreola vs. Tomasz Adamek (Heavyweight)
Let’s face it, the Klitschko’s are too good and basically too big to compete with in the heavyweight division. For that reason the division has suffered mightily in popularity. However, these four “smaller” heavyweights bring more creditability to the division. Sure none of them can beat a Klitschko, (Eddie Chambers will get his shot in April) but they bring entertainment value. The best thing is, all four guys are elite, action style boxers who could bring fans back to watching the heavyweight division. Rumor is Chris Arreola and Tomasz Adamek are discussing a potential matchup for later this year.
Nonito Donaire vs. Vic Darchinyan (Junior Bantamweight)
Yes this would be a rematch, however when they fought in 2007 it was at flyweight. Donaire, a heavy underdog at the time, knocked out Darchinyan in the 5th round to win his first major title. Now both fighters, each at junior bantamweight, need a big fight. Darchinyan is considered the top junior bantamweight, with Donaire seemingly in the middle of the pack. This would be an action packed fight between men with very strong and likable personalities. Fans would have to watch this fight.
REMEMBER this Saturday January 16, the Brook Park Armory, in association with the West Side Boxing Club will be hosting “War at the Armory” at 7:30 PM. It will be a great night of boxing, as many of Cleveland’s top amateur fighters will be showcased, including number one ranked 2009 US National champion Terrell Gausha. For tickets go to Proboxingohio.com or contact the West Side Boxing Club at (440) 785-4900 and remember to get your tickets in advance.