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Cigar Aficionado
Nov 1, 2004

"Patel"? Fuck you.

I hope 2019 is a great year, and it should be at least good, but I'm sad that the biggest fights that could be made this year: Lomachenko vs Garcia, Crawford vs Spence, and Joshua vs either Wilder or Fury, are all very unlikely to happen in 2019. Hurd/Charlo for 154 supremacy was also likely scuttled by Charlo's loss to Harrison. 2019 may be a kind of purgatory year where nothing transformational in the sport happens.

On the bright side, some of the highlights we (might) have to look forward to:

1. Wilder/Fury 2 (seems to be happening)
2. Usyk's run at heavyweight (can the best cruiserweight since Holyfield have a Holyfieldesque heavyweight run?)
3. Spence/Garcia (if it's not a sideshow, it could be a big fight)
4. At least a couple great fights from the deep light-heavyweight division (4 different champs and at least 4 legit contenders. Kovalev vs Yarde is one to watch)
5. Some great fights at middleweight, and maybe even Canelo/GGG 3 (and Canelo/Jacobs is already scheduled)
6. Jaime Mungia's arrival at 154, easing the division's muddiness in the aftermath of Jermell Charlo's loss (will he fight Jarrett Hurd, or Jermell Charlo?)
7. Keith Thurman's return to the sport (makes the welterweight division arguably the most talent rich)
8. A 50/50 chance that the WBSS tournaments at 140 and 118 continue (and if it doesn't, why can't they still fight each-other and unify?)
9. A strong crop of prospects continuing their careers (Teofimo Lopez, Shakur Stevenson, Gervonta Davis, etc)
10. Joshua fighting... some guys (Miller? Whyte? Pulev?)

Plus watching guys like Srisaket Sor Rungvisai, Naoya Inoue, Callum Smith, Jarrett Hurd, Oscar Valdez, Leo Santa Cruz, and other luminaries continue their careers.

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Cigar Aficionado
Nov 1, 2004

"Patel"? Fuck you.

MMM Whatchya Say posted:

I feel like Joshua's starting to get antsy while watching Fury and Wilder make their fights. I wouldn't be surprised if AJ fought one of the two in autumn. I'm not sure why he canceled his April fight with Whyte to book a June fight with Miller instead, but it could be because the idea of fighting Whyte wasn't as profitable as they thought it might be and instead they want to break into the American market to set up a fight with Wilder.

Hopefully. A Joshua vs Wilder/Fury winner is the biggest fight in the sport. His other options for his second fight of 2019: Whyte, Pulev, Ortiz, are all very ho-hum.

The heavyweight division has some decent new contenders in Adam Kownacki, Trevor Bryan, and Oscar Rivas, and some interesting prospects with Sergey Kuzmin, Filip Hrgovic, Efe Ajagba, Daniel Dubois, and Joe Joyce, but none of those guys are near ready to fight an Anthony Joshua in 2019. His prospects for late 2019 slim; basically the 3 guys I mentioned, maybe Dominic Breazeale if he's desperate. That's about it, and none of them are interesting fights.

Cigar Aficionado
Nov 1, 2004

"Patel"? Fuck you.

Usyk could be another possibility for Joshua, but 2019 is probably too early for that as well. It's February and he hasn't even fully confirmed he's going to heavyweight yet.

Cigar Aficionado
Nov 1, 2004

"Patel"? Fuck you.

Kownacki is about as unexciting as it gets. Smallish, limited, forum posterís body. Iím sure one of the champs will have to fight him eventually when he inevitably wheedles his way into a mandatory position, but heís got 0 shot against the elite of the division. Heís fun to watch against C and D level guys though.

Cigar Aficionado
Nov 1, 2004

"Patel"? Fuck you.

I doubt Maidana is out of money; 4-5 million USD (Maidana's supposed net worth) goes a long way in Argentina. Supposedly he watched Pacquiao and Thurman's last fights and decided he could beat them. And I'd probably take a prime Maidana over both of them at this stage in their careers too. But Maidana is clearly past his prime at this point. I'd be shocked if he could even get back down to 147, and he'd be pretty useless at 154/160. If he somehow can get back down to 147 though, there are big money fights there for him, and he wouldn't even have to fight Crawford or Spence. Pacquiao, Thurman, Broner, Khan, Porter, Garcia: 147 is a deep division with lots of big names. Maybe he could even fight an Andre Berto in his comeback fight.

Cigar Aficionado
Nov 1, 2004

"Patel"? Fuck you.

Jose posted:

i feel like boxing should really have time limits on how long somoene can stay retired before fighting again. The WBC have ordered a fight between Whyte and Breazeale to determine who is the mandatory challenger for W"ilder

The heavyweight division is going to get a lot of clarity by the summer. Wilder/Fury 2 is almost confirmed, and of course Joshua/Miller is almost done for June 1st.

It's going to be very hard for Joshua to not take the Wilder/Fury 2 winner as his late 2019 opponent, especially considering Whyte and Breazeale will likely be off the table for him too.

Cigar Aficionado
Nov 1, 2004

"Patel"? Fuck you.

I understand this complicated things but Iím not sure how this totally scuttles things if the WBC ordered Wilder/Fury to have an immediate rematch.

Cigar Aficionado
Nov 1, 2004

"Patel"? Fuck you.

The Manuel Charr/Fres Oquendo WBA regular title fight that has been on and off for what seems like years has finally been cancelled, potentially forever, after Oquendo missed the deadline to sign the contract. Very much hope so, as Oquendo is 45 years old, hasn't fought in 5 years, and who's prime was 15 years ago. The "WBA Regular" title is obviously not a real title anyways, and Charr isn't even a legitimate top 10 heavyweight, but this would have been the biggest farce of a "title" fight, maybe of all time.

Charr might have to fight Trevor Bryan next instead, who's basically a nobody but is at least young and undefeated. Bryan probably wins because Charr sucks, which would turn Bryan into somewhat of a real contender in the division.

Cigar Aficionado
Nov 1, 2004

"Patel"? Fuck you.

Gozinbulx posted:

No one cares what the WBC says, the only thing that I think doesn't scuttle it is the fact that it's the biggest payday available to all parties involved.

The WBC could strip Wilder for not fighting Fury, unless it's Fury who refuses to fight, so Wilder does somewhat care about what the WBC says, as least as long as not getting stripped is concerned.

Cigar Aficionado
Nov 1, 2004

"Patel"? Fuck you.

Apparently Usyk vs Povetkin at heavyweight is in the works for May. On paper this is a stiff test for Usyk, but Povetkin is almost 40, a blown up cruiserweight himself, and arguably lost to Marco Huck 7 years ago. Usyk probably works him over, but it could end up being a pretty good fight.

Cigar Aficionado
Nov 1, 2004

"Patel"? Fuck you.

Povetkin is one of the weirdest heavyweights of all time because he's been a legitimate top 5 heavyweight for over a decade (pretty much since he beat Chris Byrd and Eddie Chambers in late 2007/early 2008), has an impeccable pedigree (amateur star, Olympic gold medallist), and even has a great record and has fought and beaten a lot of good fighters, and yet has always been a complete afterthought, has always perceived as vulnerable, and was never as good as his rating and pedigree indicated. He's like a world-class level Brian Nielsen or something.

Also - somehow Anthony Dirrell is facing "Avni Yildirim" for the WBC super middleweight title this weekend, despite Callum Smith holding the "WBC Diamond title" in the same division. The Super Middleweight division is brutal at the moment.

Cigar Aficionado
Nov 1, 2004

"Patel"? Fuck you.

MMM Whatchya Say posted:

You don't have to use quotes, Avni Yildirim is his real name

Quotes because who the gently caress is Avni Yildirim and why is he getting a title shot.

Cigar Aficionado
Nov 1, 2004

"Patel"? Fuck you.

Joyce/Stiverne is apparently for the WBA eliminator for Manuel Charr? Maybe the biggest joke for a "title eliminator" ever.

Cigar Aficionado
Nov 1, 2004

"Patel"? Fuck you.

A few notes:

- Bermane Stiverne was totally washed a few years ago, but Joe Joyce also looked pretty bad. His next fight is supposedly against "WBA Regular" champ Manuel Charr, which Joyce should also win but could very well lose, as Charr at least has a bit of a pulse. At almost 34 already and a very slow, basic fighter, Joyce is no real threat to the current Big 3 and could conceivably lose to any legit top 10 ranked guy.

- James DeGale proved what everyone suspected in that he's a shot fighter now. He should retire. Eubank is decent but will never be an elite talent. He's lucky that he's in one of the shallowest divisions in boxing though, and could possibly snag a title and hold onto it for a bit, but would lose to Callum Smith, Gilberto Ramirez, etc.

- Didn't catch Dirrell/Yildirim but heard it was a pretty competitive fight. Considering Eubank Jr blew Yildirim out recently, and Dirrell's been talking about retirement already and was never that good to begin with, I don't see either of these guys being relevant for very much longer. Dirrell probably beats Yildirim in a rematch but would drop his WBC strap to any of the other titlists or top contenders at 168.

- Brandon Rios and Humberto Soto should both retire

Cigar Aficionado
Nov 1, 2004

"Patel"? Fuck you.

sportsgenius86 posted:

The Dirrell fight was entertaining but I didnít think either looked very great. Also, after the Badou Jack cut, itís hard to look at that stoppage as reasonable

Yeah, it just makes me think less of Dirrell, but neither of them are championship caliber. I guess Dirrell can be an easy unification opportunity for one of the other champs.

Cigar Aficionado
Nov 1, 2004

"Patel"? Fuck you.

Very lame. Now Fury will fight a bum in a few months and Wilder will either fight a bum or not fight at all until nearer the end of 2019.

Cigar Aficionado
Nov 1, 2004

"Patel"? Fuck you.

Wilder is claiming that he's still fighting May 18th, so that's good news, but doesn't allow for a lot of time to negotiate. Best case he fights Dillian Whyte or Dominic Breazeale, though Adam Kownacki, Oscar Rivas, Carlos Takam, and Dereck Chisora could be other options if Wilder has to drop down to a "stay busy" level of fight.

Cigar Aficionado
Nov 1, 2004

"Patel"? Fuck you.

The major risk is that one (or more) of the big 3 loses before they fight each other, which would blunt the momentum of potential fights between them by quite a bit. Wilder is also not getting any younger; he turns 34 this year. I know heavyweights peak late but that is the age when athleticism starts to fade a bit. Thereís also the risk that they never fight each other, or the fights happen so late that they donít matter as much, or even much at all (see Lewis-Tyson).

Cigar Aficionado
Nov 1, 2004

"Patel"? Fuck you.

Wilder has been mulling a $100 million DAZN offer and is reportedly (but not confirmed) going to turn it down, which I hope isnít true. It wouldnít make much sense, unless he can get much more money from them or someone else. But Wilder is 34, if heís going to take big fights itís got to be now. It would be a tragedy if Joshua/Wilder never happens.

Cigar Aficionado
Nov 1, 2004

"Patel"? Fuck you.

Well that went exactly as expected. Basically a waste of time, and hopefully it didn't damage Mikey Garcia too badly, as he took a bit of a beating in there. Kudos to him going the full 12, but it wasn't worth it. My biggest hope is that he goes back down to 135, and is able to healthily get back to 135, in order to eventually set up a Lomachenko fight in 2020.

Sounds like Spence is angling for a Manny Pacquiao fight next, which I can't see Freddy Roach allowing to happen. Which means Roach will probably be out of Pac's camp again and it will happen, and Pac get destroyed, because at this point in time he's 40 years old and has lost a few steps, and Spence is probably a top 5 pound for pound talent in the sport (along with Loma, Crawford, Usyk, and Inoue), not to mention a big welterweight.

Anyways, praying for both Lomachenko/Garcia and Spence/Crawford in 2020.

Cigar Aficionado
Nov 1, 2004

"Patel"? Fuck you.

Mike Coppinger is reporting that Errol Spence is probably fighting Shawn Porter Next, with Pacquiao instead probably fighting Keith Thurman or maybe Danny Garcia.

Cigar Aficionado
Nov 1, 2004

"Patel"? Fuck you.

Also a report out that Usyk is indeed moving up to heavyweight and will take on Carlos Takam on May 18th, same night as Wilder/Breazeale. The original plan was Usyk and Povetkin would take interim fights and then fight each other, so I assume if Usyk gets past Takam he will fight Povetkin nearer to the end of the year. If Usyk wins both of those fights heíll be in line to take on one of the big 3 of Joshua/Wilder/Fury sometime in 2020.

More and more 2019 is feeling like a ďstay busyĒ year for a lot of guys and 2020 is looking like the year when a lot of big fights could happen.

Cigar Aficionado
Nov 1, 2004

"Patel"? Fuck you.

Tyson Furyís signed to fight Euro prospect Tom Schwarz on June 15th. Compared to a Wilder rematch, this is about as disappointing as it gets. Schwarz is an undefeated prospect, but heís not a legit top 10 heavyweight, hasnít fought anyone in the top 20, and is not some searing elite prospect or anything. He reminds me of an Alex Dimitrenko or something. Strictly Euro level.

Fury should handle him easily and then hopefully his next fight this year is much more competitive.

Cigar Aficionado
Nov 1, 2004

"Patel"? Fuck you.

Joshua vs a 38 year old Pulev is such a waste of a fight. Look for it in November 2019.

Cigar Aficionado
Nov 1, 2004

"Patel"? Fuck you.

I feel bad for Peterson; he was hyped as a blue chip prospect early in his career and never quite made it to the elite level. He did have the win against Khan, but that was a shady fight for several reasons and Khan isnít exactly a pound for pound level guy either. The Lipinets fight was brutal and Peterson has taken quite a bit of punishment in general. He definitely looks all done to me. Hopefully he can leave the sport with his health relatively intact, a relatively fat bank account, and a plan for the next steps in his life.

Cigar Aficionado
Nov 1, 2004

"Patel"? Fuck you.

Pacquiao and Thurman are in ďadvanced talksĒ for a fight on July 13th. Fingers crossed.

Cigar Aficionado
Nov 1, 2004

"Patel"? Fuck you.

Iím waiting until April 2nd to believe that Klitschko is actually coming back.

Cigar Aficionado
Nov 1, 2004

"Patel"? Fuck you.

Back to Pacquiao/Thurman, I'd be shocked if Thurman doesn't find a way to win that fight fairly comfortably. Pacquiao is 40 year old part time fighter and hasn't had elite power for years now. He didn't exactly look formidable against B level guys Adrien Broner and Jeff Horn. Thurman looked a bit sketchy in his first fight back, but it was his first fight back, and other than getting caught and hurt the one time, he was mostly in control of that fight. Worst case, Thurman nips a close SD in a true 50/50 fight. More likely: he wins 7-9 rounds clearly. Pacquiao is still a top fighter, but he's not a pound for pound level talent anymore, and Thurman pre-injury was, plus hes a full decade younger than Pacquiao. Just hard to see Pacquiao winning that fight unless Thurman is well and truly shot.

Definitely an intriguing matchup and a can't miss fight if it happens though.

Cigar Aficionado
Nov 1, 2004

"Patel"? Fuck you.

Usyk beats everyone outside the big 3.

Gassiev is also supposedly going to heavyweight with a fight planned for June.

Cigar Aficionado
Nov 1, 2004

"Patel"? Fuck you.

Out of nowhere, Gilberto Ramirez and Callum Smith are "in talks" to fight this year. Would be the two top super middleweights in the division in a unification bout; both are undefeated to boot. The winner would be the undisputed champ at 168, but still would need to move up to 175 for any major fights.

Suspicious because it's Arum and Hearn involved but I guess we'll see.

Cigar Aficionado
Nov 1, 2004

"Patel"? Fuck you.

Very hard to see Yarde taking such a massive step up, AND going to Russia to do it.

Cigar Aficionado
Nov 1, 2004

"Patel"? Fuck you.

Inexplicably bad fight for GGG. I'm a Canadian boxing fan who pays attention and I've never even heard of Rolls. Based on his record he appears to be a C level fighter, at best. Maybe nothing more than a D level/glorified club fighter type of guy. Guys like N'dam, Maciej Sulecki, Ryota Murata, Jack Culcay, etc. would all have been acceptable step down/stay busy level fights. Ideally GGG fights Sergei Derevyanchenko or Rob Brant or something. Rolls is basically a Peter McNeeley level opponent. Total waste of time.

And lol @ the IBF for having Rolls ranked 9th in the world at middleweight (ahead of GGG!).

Cigar Aficionado
Nov 1, 2004

"Patel"? Fuck you.

Couple fights scheduled for the summer: Dillian Whyte vs Oscar Rivas on July 20th, and the Jermell Charlo vs Tony Harrison rematch on June 23rd.

My money is on Charlo and Whyte.

Cigar Aficionado
Nov 1, 2004

"Patel"? Fuck you.

The WBC has announced that Errol Spence vs Shawn Porter is ďofficialĒ, so I guess it is Į\_(ツ)_/Į. Coppinger agrees.

Porter is a bulldog but Spence should clearly outclass him over 12 and might even stop him late.

Cigar Aficionado
Nov 1, 2004

"Patel"? Fuck you.

Hopefully this means that Spence and Thurman are on a collision course at the end of 2019.

I wonder who Crawford will fight next. Probably Egidijus Kavaliauskas or someone equally as preposterous.

Cigar Aficionado
Nov 1, 2004

"Patel"? Fuck you.

sportsgenius86 posted:

This Doheny-Roman fight loving owns

Best fight Iíve seen this year.

Cigar Aficionado
Nov 1, 2004

"Patel"? Fuck you.

Sor Rungvisai is not looking sharp. Very lethargic. Might be it for him.

Cigar Aficionado
Nov 1, 2004

"Patel"? Fuck you.

MMM Whatchya Say posted:

After the fight, Jacobs is considering a move to 168, Canelo says he wants to unify the belts but isn't sure Andrade will be ready for September, so they might look for "another opponent" (Golovkin, you'd imagine, or Lemmy if things are really dire)

Jacobs seems a little small for super-middleweight, considering the guys at the top of the division are both 6'3 in Callum Smith and Gilberto Ramirez, but he could also probably beat guys like Chris Eubank Jr or Billy Joe Saunders, so maybe he could do alright there. He's a good fighter; definitely world class.

If I was Andrade I'd scrap the upcoming Sulecki fight and go right for a Canelo fight in September. It's infinitely more lucrative than a Sulecki fight and it's not guaranteed that Andrade beats Sulecki either. He should, but stranger things have happened. And if he loses to Sulecki, his window for getting a Canelo fight closes, maybe forever.

Cigar Aficionado
Nov 1, 2004

"Patel"? Fuck you.

I've already seen people calling Canelo pound for pound #1. Madness.

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Cigar Aficionado
Nov 1, 2004

"Patel"? Fuck you.

Canelo lost both GGG fights (maybe the second one could have been a draw) and canít beat top guys any better than 7-5. What kind of #1 pound for pound guy is that?

Anyway, I have him clearly below Lomachenko, Crawford, and Usyk on my list. Inoue and Spence could also leapfrog him with big wins.

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