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Floyd Mayweather Jr. posted a picture of himself in handwraps on Instagram, along with the following message: “Coming out of retirement in 2020.” With Mayweather having recently been spotted with UFC President Dana White at a Boston Celtics game, the sports media got worked up about the cryptic message and whether it means Mayweather would be transitioning to MMA or taking on one of the biggest names in boxing. While it is possible White could throw enough money at the 43-year-old to launch the Ultimate Fighting Championship frontman’s journey into boxing with some kind of fight, it needs to be acknowledged that Mayweather loves these stupid vague message games.
In April, he posted a video of himself at a press conference declaring, “I have an announcement to make.” Boxing fans went crazy; other fighters begged for the opportunity; and Mayweather announced he was teaming with a sports gambling app. Maybe there is something to this video, but if there was nothing to the announcement, nothing to the Manny Pacquiao rematch video and nothing to the MMA cage training video, why would we think there was something to this?
While Mayweather is being vague and cryptic about what he wants to do in his next possible athletic endeavor, Pacquiao is not. The Filipino superstar has confirmed that he wants to fight either Danny Garcia or Mikey Garcia and that he wants the bout this spring.
IOC Bans All Rio Olympic Judges From Tokyo Games
While Olympic boxing has always had a sordid history, we may be starting to get a sense of just how bad the corruption was during the Rio de Janeiro Olympics in 2012. It was announced that rather than try and figure out if any of the officials used during those games were corruption-free, the International Olympic Committee decided instead that it would rather just bar any official who was used during the Summer Games in Brazil from taking part in the upcoming Tokyo Olympics.
This was an unbelievable move. The fact that the organization was so infested with corruption that the IOC felt better off starting from scratch than trying to sort the wheat from the chafe should be a strong counterpoint to any “one bad apple” arguments that arise.
The Olympics will also use the controversial open-scoring method in which judges display how they scored the round openly to the public. While the open-scoring system was used in the 2012 Games, it was abandoned in 2016. Many believe this takes a lot of the drama out of boxing, as well as encourages coasting when a victory is essentially mathematically guaranteed. It will be interesting to see how much of a role this plays in the excitement -- or lack thereof -- of Olympic boxing in 2020.
Ramirez-Postol Official for Feb. 1 in China
WBC and WBO 140-pound champion Jose Ramirez will head to the port city of Haikou, China, for his next title defense, as he squares off with Viktor Postol on Feb. 1. While Ramirez is undefeated, Ukraine’s Postol has only lost to Terence Crawford and Josh Taylor, two of the top pound-for-pound fighters in the world and neither of which managed to stop him. Taylor is now the only other champion at 140 pounds following his victory over Regis Prograis in the World Boxing Super Series final. A good fight for sure. Chinese fans will be happy. Win then unify.
Speaking of Taylor, one of his former opponents was struck down with a huge suspension for a positive PED test. Ryan Martin failed a VADA test after his fight against Taylor in November 2019 and was given a four-year suspension by UK Anti-Doping. Martin claims the failed test was a result of contaminated supplements and will appeal the decision, but considering how many fighters fail PED tests, it seems rather excessive to be banned for four years.
Plant to Face Angulo, Likely in February
After his big win over Peter Quillin, Alfredo “El Perro” Angulo is getting a title shot. It is being reported that the now 37-year-old Mexican will fight IBF 168-pound champion Caleb Plant on Feb. 15. This was a significant letdown for Plant’s fans, considering most people think Angulo is still shot and that a win over Quillin does not mean as much as it once did. While most people were happy to see Plant put the final nail in the Mike Lee budding boxing superstar/Subway spokesman coffin, “Sweethands” could have done better than Angulo.
Munguia Fighting O’Sullivan at 160
After what seemed like years of talking about a move to 160 pounds, undefeated 154-pound titleholder Jaime Munguia is finally making the jump to middleweight. It was announced that, under the tutelage of new trainer Erik Morales, Munguia will make his middleweight debut against Gary “Spike” O’Sullivan on Jan. 11 at the Alamodome in San Antonio.
While this fight will not answer many questions about how well Munguia will compete with the elite at 160 pounds or how Munguia has learned to deal with slick boxers while training under Morles, it is a fun stylistic matchup that will give us a sense of whether his power can translate to the new weight class. O’Sullivan was knocked out inside one round in September 2018.
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