2010: The highs and lows
By David Avraam: 2010 produced some fantastic fights inside the ring; titles changed hands, boxers defied the odds and headlines were made. Unfortunately some of the headlines were for what boxers did outside the ring.
Article posted on 01.01.2011
Floyd Mayweather Jr. showed us why he should be considered the best fighter on the planet. His first fight since he came out of retirement, saw him tackle Juan Manuel Marquez at a catch weight, which Floyd didn't adhere too. He got a lot of criticism for fighting a smaller guy. Shane Mosley confronted Mayweather about his choice of opponent and said the two of them should fight. Mosley got his wish and despite landing some good right hands early on in the fight, he was dominated by Mayweather who landed at will. We got to witness another great performance from Floyd Mayweather.
Unfortunately Floyd Mayweather was arrested on allegations of assault, if he is found guilty he could be given a lengthy prison sentence making him unlikely to fight ever again. Let us hope another brilliant boxing career isn't ruined.
Edwin Valero, a Venezuelan born fighter who was nicked named 'El Dinamita'; committed suicide in a jail cell, after being arrested on allegations of killing his Wife. The former WBA Super featherweight Champion and then reigning WBC Lightweight Champion, had stopped every man he fought and was never taken the distance. He made a record breaking start to his career by winning his first 18 fights in the first round and thrilled fans with an aggressive style of fighting. A tragic loss to a man who had so much to offer boxing.
R.I.P. 27-0-0 27 KO's.
6 of the top boxers in the Super Middleweight division put their reputations on the line and entered a unique and ground breaking tournament. The aim was to declare a top man in the division with the best fighting the best. This tournament alone showed both the highs and lows. WBA champion Mikkel Kessler lost his title in the first round, but regained Carl Froch's WBC title in second round of the competition. Arthur Abraham made the jump from 160lbs look easy, by Knocking out Jermain Taylor. Andre's Ward and Dirrell impressed. Ward captured his first world title and Dirrell showed us flashes of speed, skill and ring craft. The low points were only clear to see: Jermain Taylor retiring after his loss, Arthur Abraham illegally punching Dirrell who was on his knee and Andre Ward criticised for using his head in his victory over Kessler. Carl Froch voiced his opinions like a one man trade union, after his 'home town' decision loss to Kessler in Denmark. Worrying news that Dirrell could be suffering from Neurological problems meant he had to withdraw from the competition. Let's hope the semi finals and final give us more highs than lows.
Bernard Hopkins proved that age is just a number, when he travelled North of the border to fight Jean Pascal in Canada. Pascal in his previous fight had stopped Chad Dawson and claimed the WBC Light Heavyweight title. A lot of fight fans and writers thought that Hopkins had made a mistake and would be knocked in to retirement by Pascal. But Hopkins once again produced a performance of a life time and showed the younger fighter how it is done. Unfortunately the judges didn't see it the same way as the fans and Hopkins who raised both his hands at the final bell whilst pascal walked back to his corner with his head down, was left disappointed with a draw. Had the referee not given the first knock down, which on replay did look like an illegal punch, we could of seen boxing oldest ever World Champion crowned.
A boxer to leap in to the pound for pound rankings and make a claim to be fighter of the year was Sergio Martinez, he defeated both Kelly Pavlik and Paul Williams. The Williams fight could be candidate for KO of the year. Manny Pacquiao once again defied the odds by jumping up in weight and gaining another world title. He dominated Antonio Margarito in their fight and left Margarito needing hospital treatment. All three of the Heavyweight champions made successful defences of their titles, and boxers in the lower weight classes gave fans some great entertainment.
If 2011 is as good as 2010 we are in for another great year of boxing.
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