Tag Archives: Boxing

YouTube vs TikTok boxing: Full fight list and undercard for YouTubers vs TikTokers tonight

YouTubers and TikTokers will be taking to the boxing ring tonight to face each other in a one-of-its-kind event named the ‘Battle of the Platforms’. The night will feature a whole host of popular social media stars coming face-to-face, including Austin McBroom, Bryce Hall, and Nate Wyatt.

Social media stars are continuing to assert their influence over the sport of boxing.

The high-profile KSI vs Logan Paul fight in August 2018 drew huge numbers of viewers, owing to their large respective fanbases.

The subsequent rematch, in November 2019, was a full pay-per-view fight, promoted by Eddie Hearn’s Matchroom Boxing, and was broadcast on Sky Sports Box Office in the UK.

Now, the world of social media has gone one step further, and has launched a full-scale boxing event, featuring eight fights between YouTubers and TikTokers.

READ MORE: Claressa Shields put ‘faith over fear’ to claim debut win in MMA

YouTube vs TikTok line-up – in full

Ryan Johnston (YT) vs Cale Saurage (TT) – free

Landon McBroom (YT) vs Ben Azelart (TT) – free

Tanner Fox (YT) vs Ryland Storms (TT)

Faze Jarvis (YT) vs Michael Le (TT)

DDG (YT) vs Nate Wyatt (TT)

Deji (YT) vs Vinnie Hacker (TT)

AnEsonGib (YT) vs Taylor Holder (TT)

Austin McBroom (YT) vs Bryce Hall (TT)

What time is the YouTube vs TikTok boxing event tonight?

The YouTube vs TikTok boxing event is set to get underway on Saturday June 12, in Miami, Florida.

In the UK, it will start at about 11pm, with the main PPV event starting an hour later.

The fights will only last five rounds – each of two minutes – so the event is likely to be shorter than usual events.

McBroom and Hall are expected to make their ring walks at about 3am on Sunday morning, UK time.

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This post originally appeared on Daily Express :: Sport Feed

Floyd Mayweather vs Logan Paul LIVE: Boxing legend faces YouTube star in Miami

Floyd Mayweather vs Logan Paul LIVE

Face to face: Floyd Mayweather and Logan Paul will face off in an exhibition bout in Miami (Image: GETTY)

Floyd Mayweather vs Logan Paul: Fight Card

  • Floyd Mayweather vs Logan Paul – 190-pound exhibition bout
  • Badou Jack vs Dervin Colina – light-heavyweight bout
  • Jarrett Hurd vs Luis Arias – middleweight bout
  • Chad ‘Ochocinco’ Johnson vs. Brian Maxwell – cruiserweight exhibition bout

Jarrett Hurd vs Luis Arias

The 10-round middleweight bout between former light-middleweight world champ Jarrett Hurd and Luis Arias didn’t go the way of the formbook, as Arias scored a huge victory to hand Hurd only the second defeat of his pro career.

Arias, who hadn’t won since 2017, looked fired-up and ready for the fray, while Hurd appeared a little slower to the punch as he got clipped frequently by Arias’ right hand.

Hurd attempted to rough-house his way back into the fight, and was given a strong warning by the referee after two low blows in quick succession left Arias in agony on the canvas in Round 7.

Then, in Round 9, Hurd then earned a knockdown after a shot sent Arias to the canvas, though it looked like the wet canvas from the torrential rain in Miami was a much to blame as Hurd’s punch.

However, it proved to be a frustrating night for Hurd, as Arias ran out the split-decision winner with scores of 94-95, 97-93, 96-93.

Luis Arias

Split-decision winner: Luis Arias defeated Jarrett Hurd (Image: GETTY)

Chad ‘Ochocinco’ Johnson vs Brian Maxwell

The exhibition bout between former NFL star Johnson and bare-knuckle fighter Maxwell proved to be a smart piece of matchmaking, with the pair looking relatively evenly-matched in their four 2-minute-round encounter.

Despite Maxwell having the experience advantage, it was Johnson who landed the cleaner work through most of the bout, using his lunging southpaw style well to repeatedly clip the combat sports professional.

But, in the final round, Maxwell connected with a big right hand that sent “Ochocinco” crashing face-first to the canvas.

Johnson beat the count, but looked decidedly wobbly as he backpedalled his way to the final bell.

We scored it as we went along, and gave “Ochocinco” the first three rounds before Maxwell scored the final-round knockdown, meaning our unofficial scorecard had the former NFL star as the winner, 38-37.

But, with the bout contested as an exhibition, no winner was announced as both men had their hands raised after the fight.

1:15am: The night’s first fight offers plenty of interest on the other side of the pond, with former NFL wide receiver Chad “Ochocinco” Johnson set to make his combat sports bow against journeyman mixed martial artist and bare-knuckle fighter Brian Maxwell.

“People who are buying tickets, people that are showing up, I want them to leave and say, ‘I doubted Ocho, but to see him get in the ring, knowing that someone tried to kill. He put on one hell of a f****** show,'” he told ESPN.

“I wouldn’t step in the ring with Charlo or Canelo, but the opportunity presented itself to move around with somebody who has skills and has ring experience.

“I felt I was in adequate enough shape and had enough background to do it.

“With a huge amount of respect for combat sports, I couldn’t pass up the opportunity.”

Chad 'Ochocinco' Johnson

Six-time NFL Pro Bowler Chad ‘Ochocinco’ Johnson is set for undercard action (Image: GETTY)

1:00am: Former cruiserweight world champion Johnny Nelson has joined the Sky Box Office panel as they try to keep the interest up during the long build-up to the first fight of the night.

And while nobody has attempted to build a case for Logan Paul actually winning, Nelson brought a stark sense of reality of just how big of a mismatch we’re about to see tonight.

“Unless Floyd Mayweather goes out there blindfolded, and probably drunk, how can he possibly lose to this young man?” he said, with a smile.

12:40am: The fight’s rules are a little, well, strange.

Knockouts are legal. However, there will be no judges at ringside, and no official winner will be declared.

Floyd Mayweather vs Logan Paul: Exhibition rules

  • No ringside judges
  • No official winner to be announced
  • Knockouts are legal
  • Knockout is up to referee’s discretion
  • 10-ounce gloves to be worn, with no headgear
  • Fight to be contested over eight 3-minute rounds
  • Fighters to weigh no more than 190 pounds

Logan Paul

Logan Paul pulls on the gloves during his open workout (Image: GETTY)

12:30am: Logan Paul may have the height and reach advantage, but the difference in boxing ability isn’t so much a skills gap as an almighty chasm.

And British boxer and Mayweather gym fighter Viddal Riley, who trained YouTuber KSI in his two fights against Logan Paul, said “The Maverick’s” physical advantages will count for nothing once the fight starts.

In one line, he aptly described what the overwhelming majority of fight fans are thinking about Paul’s chances heading into the fight.

“The skill’s so low, the weight doesn’t matter.”

Floyd Mayweather and Logan Paul

Size difference: Logan Paul towered over Floyd Mayweather at the weigh-ins (Image: GETTY)

12:15am: Paul, 26, has been given virtually no chance of success against the boxing icon, but that hasn’t stopped the Ohio native from portraying a confident attitude heading into tonight’s fight.

“People are asking me if I’m like scared. No, no I’m not scared,” he said

“The feelings I’m getting right now are just excitement.

“I’m excited, I’m blessed to have this opportunity, and I think we’re going to wow a lot of people.

“I just don’t believe I’m gonna get in there and people are gonna see what they expect to see.”

Paul towered over Mayweather at the weigh-ins after tipping the scale at 189.5 pounds, 34 and a half pounds heavier than Mayweather, who came in at 155 pounds.

But, as Mayweather stated afterward, size won’t matter when the pair start throwing leather.

“Height doesn’t win fights, weight doesn’t win fights,” he said.

“Fighting wins fights… and I can fight.”

12:10am: The first fight of the evening will see former NFL wide receiver Chad ‘Ochocinco’ Johnson make his boxing debut.

The 43-year-old will be trying his hand at boxing for the first time.

He has previously trained with Mayweather during the NFL off-season, however.

Ochocinco will be taking on bare-knuckle boxer Brian Maxwell, who has lost his only three previous fights.

Elsewhere, former world champion Jarrett Hurd is expected to pick up a victory over Luis Arias in their middleweight bout.

Hurd, who held the unified WBA (super), IBF and IBO light-middleweight titles between 2017 and 2019, is looking to make his way back to a title fight.

And the 30-year-old is expected to pick up the win against Arias, who is fighting for the first time since 2019, and hasn’t earned a victory since June 2017.

Former WBC super-middleweight and WBA light-heavyweight champion Badou Jack is also set for action on the card.

Jack was originally slated to face fellow former world champion Jean Pascal in a rematch of their 2019 light-heavyweight title fight, which Pascal won by split decision.

However, Pascal failed a drug test in the lead-up to the fight, and has been replaced by undefeated contender Dervin Colina, who has won all bar two of his 15 pro fights inside the distance.

12:05am: Despite losing his professional debut to fellow YouTube star KSI in November 2019, Paul challenged Mayweather to a fight last year, which was confirmed in December.

The affair was initially scheduled for February 2021 but was postponed until this month due to COVID-19 travel restrictions.

Mayweather is set to earn a monstrous payday from the event, with the Hall of Famer claiming he will make over $ 100million (£70million) for fighting Paul.

He said: “I can fight a fighter right now, and I can guarantee myself $ 35million. I can eventually probably make $ 50million for just a regular fight.

“Or me and Logan Paul can go out, entertain, have fun and make nine figures, $ 100million or more.”

12:00am: The sport of boxing has seen many big-money, big-occasion matchups, but few have been quite like the one we’re about to witness tonight.

There are no world titles on the line. Indeed, officially, there are no professional records on the line.

Instead, tonight’s main event is an exhibition bout between one of the greatest technical boxers in the sport’s history and a young upstart YouTuber with a massive social media following who has only boxed twice in competitive bouts in his life.

It’s the latest instalment of the Floyd Mayweather money-printing bandwagon, as the 44-year-old taps into the lucrative social influencer market for what, on paper at least, should be by far his easiest assignment since this first bout as a professional back in October 1996.

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This post originally appeared on Daily Express :: Sport Feed

Logan Paul has no chance of defeating Floyd Mayweather, says boxing legend

“This dude (Paul) is a YouTube sensation. Floyd boxes. 

“And not only does Floyd box, Floyd was one of the best. Floyd was one of the best, pound-for-pound, for a long time. 

“Boxers couldn’t hit him. How’s a non-boxer gonna hit him?

Jones also said that, with Logan taking a mismatch against a legend like Mayweather, and Logan’s brother Jake taking a fight with former UFC champion Tyron Woodley, the days of the two YouTuber siblings fighting in novelty matchups are now gone, and the bouts will only get more serious from now on.

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This post originally appeared on Daily Express :: Sport Feed

Jake Paul set to take on former UFC champion Tyron Woodley in a boxing match

Boxing: Jake Paul pulls another prank on Floyd Mayweather

Paul has agreed a deal to face former UFC welterweight champion Tyron Woodley in a boxing match, according to reports Stateside.

Sources have confirmed to The Athletic that the pair have agreed to the matchup, and are set to compete at an event at a date to be confirmed in due course.

Paul’s last outing saw him go toe to toe with former Bellator and ONE Championship welterweight champion Ben Askren, who is renowned as a wrestler, but unheralded as a striker.

Paul scored a stunning first-round knockout to claim victory in their bout on April 17 at Triller Fight Club.

Since that win, Paul has attempted to goad a host of UFC personalities into fights with him.

Retired former middleweight champion Michael Bisping, former two-weight champion Conor McGregor and retired former two-division champ Daniel Cormier were all called out by Paul on social media.

Jake Paul and Tyron Woodley

Jake Paul is set to face Tyron Woodley under boxing rules (Image: GETTY)

And Cormier even confronted Paul at cageside during the UFC 261 pay-per-view event in Jacksonville, Florida as the pair went face-to-face in a tense exchange between bouts at the VyStar Veterans Memorial Arena.

Paul’s older brother, Logan Paul, is set to step through the ropes for his second professional bout on June 6.

Logan, who lost his professional debut to fellow YouTuber KSI in November 2019, will take on 50-0 boxing legend Floyd Mayweather at the Miami Dolphins’ Hard Rock Stadium.

But to date, it has been Jake who has made the bigger success of his prizefighting career.

Jake, 24, made his professional boxing debut against fellow YouTuber AnEsonGib in January 2020, and knocked out the British vlogger in just two minutes, 18 seconds in Miami.

He then followed up that win with a huge second-round knockout of former NBA star Nate Robinson last November at the Staples Center in Los Angeles.

“The Problem Child” then faced Askren in Atlanta, Georgia, and finished him in 119 seconds to score the fastest win of his career to date.

Now Paul is set to face Woodley, a former undisputed welterweight champion who fought in the octagon as recently as March.

However, Woodley’s form has dipped alarmingly since he lost the belt to current champion Kamaru Usman at UFC 235 in March 2019.

Since his unanimous decision loss, Woodley has failed to register a victory inside the octagon, as he slumped into a four-fight losing skid.

He lost a decision to Brazilian contender Gilbert Burns, then was finished via injury TKO in the final round of his main event bout with former interim champion Colby Covington last September.

Most recently, Woodley initially looked refreshed and revitalised against rising contender Vicente Luque, but was then rocked, then submitted by the Brazilian at UFC 260 in March.

Now it has been reported that Woodley is set to face Paul under boxing rules, with the bout likely to present the toughest test of Paul’s fledgling boxing career.

Woodley, despite his poor form at the elite level of MMA, is a heavy-handed puncher with outstanding conditioning.

He’ll also fight with a sizeable chip on his shoulder.

Woodley is a longtime teammate of former Paul victim Askren, and will also be keen to bounce back from his own run of poor form.

Paul, whose latest two bouts have come under the Triller Fight Club banner, declared himself a free agent earlier this month before signing a multi-fight deal with U.S. pay-per-view giants Showtime.

The matchup may also mark the end of Woodley’s UFC career, with UFC-contracted fighters typically not permitted to partake in other combat sports events while under the terms of their active UFC deals.

The one notable exception was Conor McGregor, who took on Mayweather in a huge pay-per-view boxing event in August 2017 and eventually lost via 10th-round TKO.

Woodley’s last fight was his last under his UFC contract, leaving him as a free agent, and with the American’s decision to head into a fight with a YouTuber, it may well mark the end of his career as a UFC fighter with a return to the octagon now looking unlikely, at best.

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This post originally appeared on Daily Express :: Sport Feed

Dana White blocked boxing bout with Oscar De La Hoya, says UFC legend Georges St-Pierre

UFC legend and former two-division world champion Georges St-Pierre has revealed that UFC president Dana White has stopped him from boxing Oscar De La Hoya as the boxing legend looks to make his return to the ring.

De La Hoya announced last month that he would make a comeback in a fight set for July 3 on upstart boxing promotion Triller Fight Club, an offshoot of social media company Triller.

De La Hoya’s announcement sparked widespread speculation over the possible identity of his comeback opponent.

Former UFC lightweight champion Eddie Alvarez claimed he had been contacted about potentially welcoming “The Golden Boy” back to the ring.

But it has since emerged that the fight Triller were hoping to book was a bout between boxing legend De La Hoya and mixed martial arts legend St-Pierre, who is set to be inducted into the UFC Hall of Fame this year.

However, those plans were nixed by the UFC president who, according to St-Pierre, would not give his blessing for the former UFC star to take the fight.

Georges St-Pierre and Dana White

Blocked bout: Georges St-Pierre claims UFC president Dana White blocked his bout with De La Hoya (Image: GETTY)

“I understand that Dana didn’t want me to fight,” St-Pierre told Cinema Blend earlier this week.

“However, it would have been fun, because my career as a professional fighter, to become the best in the world in mixed martial arts, is done. 

“I’m turning 40 years old tomorrow; I’m going to be 40 years old. It’s a young man’s game. 

“However, to rather fight a boxing match under the rules that Triller put on against the legendary Oscar De La Hoya? For me, it would have been a dream come true, because he is my second favorite boxer of all time, behind ‘Sugar’ Ray Leonard.

“Plus, a lot of the money made would have been given to charity. 

“So it would have been for a good cause, just to show that we don’t take ourselves too seriously.

“And it would have been serious competition because you say, ‘I play basketball, I play hockey.’, 

“But you don’t ‘play’ fighting. It would have been fun.”

“I don’t have the audacity to pretend that I’m better boxer that Oscar De La Hoya was because, when he was in his prime, he’s one of the best that’s ever done it and I come from a different sport,” St-Pierre said. 

“But, take it now because of where we are in our lives.

“I think it would have been a good matchup between him and I because he’s older than me. 

“Yeah, of course he has a lot more experience than me in boxing. But I’m younger, I’m a little bit bigger. 

“So I think it would’ve made it a pretty even matchup. It could have been fun.”

Oscar De La Hoya and Snoop Dogg

Ring return: Oscar De La Hoya announced he will return to boxing on July 3 (Image: GETTY)

UFC president White revealed in the UFC 262 post-fight press conference last weekend that Triller CEO Ryan Kavanaugh had been blowing up his phone trying to make arrangements.

But White told reporters that he wasn’t interest in taking his call, or responding to his messages.

“Who gives a s***? Does anybody give a s***? I don’t give a s*** what they think,” he said.

“You think I care what Triller thinks?

“I don’t even take their calls. This idiot calls me every day. Texts me every day. ‘Please answer my call. Please talk to me. Why won’t you talk to me?’ 

“Because I don’t give a f*** about you. Do your thing. Leave me alone. Go do whatever it is that you’re doing. Knock yourself out. I could care less. I have no interest in talking to any of those idiots.

“You guys know they’re a f****** joke. But you keep asking me about them, when you know they’re a joke. You know this is bulls***. You know they’re all full of s***.”

But Kavanaugh has remained committed to trying to make the fight happen, and took to social media to respond to White’s comments.

“If we are a ‘joke’ and you don’t give a s***, then approve GSP to fight,” Kavanaugh posted to Instagram. 

“We will donate $ 250,000 to a charity of your choice if you approve the fight, as the deal is ready to close pending ONLY your approval.”

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This post originally appeared on Daily Express :: Sport Feed

UFC’s McGregor tells Mayweather to ‘f*ck off’

Conor McGregor has weighed in on the shocking brawl between Floyd Mayweather and Jake Paul, directing crude insults at his former opponent while claiming he is in the “drain” and would make far more money through a “real” fight.

Sporting icon Mayweather and YouTuber-turned-boxer Paul were involved in a huge scrap after the 24-year-old stole the veteran’s cap when they came face-to-face at the press conference for the former champion’s fight with Paul’s brother, Logan.

That was all the invitation McGregor, who changed disciplines from MMA to boxing to lose to Mayweather in one of the most lucrative fights of all time in 2017, needed to accuse his old rival of acting shamefully.

“What the f*ck is Floyd at?” asked the UFC megastar, directing his initial question at Leonard Ellerbe, the CEO of Mayweather Promotions.

“The kid [Paul] curled up, didn’t fight back once, and Floyd is still running around acting the tough guy.”

That amounted to an interesting interpretation of a situation in which Paul had placed himself center stage at a press call that was not his own, whispering to a camera that he intended to thieve Mayweather’s cap before duly carrying out the incendiary deed.

“The kid actually just pulled this shambles of a situation Floyd is in out of the drain for him,” McGregor said, suggesting that Mayweather needs the money and is picking easy opponents.

“He should thank him. It’s embarrassing. Pro to pro, it’s embarrassing. He will not scratch 10 million for this fight and he knows it.

“It was canceled once already [in January, before being rescheduled for June 6]. The world is watching this on Twitter. He’d fight a half-decent pro and command 20 million upwards, yet it’s this sh*t.”

McGregor signed off his latest rant by alluding to the slap he placed on Mayweather’s head during the fierce press conferences that preceded their bout.

“Whatever way you spin this, it’s sad,” he said. “Fight someone for real, on your record, or f*ck off, mate. Slap head.”

Paul responded “gotcha hat” – the words he said to Mayweather as he swiped his cap, and which he has already turned into branding for merchandise in a logo that he seems certain to endlessly trot out over forthcoming months.

The loudmouth took to social media to show fans that he has already had the cringeworthy catchphrase tattooed on his arm, while others backing McGregor in comments on his post included UFC hall-of-famer Urijah Faber and Dillon Danis, one of the Irishman’s teammates.

“They should thank for you for even posting this,” said the man known for his explosive part in the aftermath to McGregor’s defeat against Khabib Nurmagomedov, responding to his idol in typically sycophantic style.

Also on rt.com Hat’ll do: More shame for boxing as Floyd Mayweather threatens to kill Jake Paul in chaotic, violent brawl after face-off (VIDEO)

Author: RT
This post originally appeared on RT Sport News

More shame for boxing as Floyd Mayweather threatens to kill Jake Paul

YouTuber-turned-boxer Jake Paul says he was hit by “one of Floyd’s 30 bodyguards” in an almighty scrap that saw icon Mayweather threaten to “kill you, motherf*cker”, reacting after the yob stole his hat during a face-off.

Even by the standards of master trash-talkers Mayweather and Paul, few would have expected the colossal scrap that ensued after the upstart pulled a stunt on the revered veteran as they exchanged barbs during the promotional event for the 44-year-old’s farcical fight on June 6 against Paul’s brother, Logan.

Approaching his sibling’s notoriously short-tempered rival at the vast Hard Rock Stadium in Miami, provocative Paul whispered to the camera that he was planning to pinch one of Mayweather’s famously expensive garments from the renowned fashion fanatic.

“I’m going to steal Floyd Mayweather’s hat,” confided Paul in a pledge that had all the hallmarks of a scripted stand-off more worthy of wrestling than boxing. “I’ll let you know how it goes.”

If the incendiary incident was planned, few could have predicted the immense scale of the skirmish that followed, with Mayweather barking at Paul while attempting to land blows on him in a confusing frenzy of attempted violence that carried on indoors and through at least one corridor in a blur of brawling.

Cameras struggled to keep up with the dizzying dust-up, making it increasingly hard to keep up with exactly where the pair were and who was involved.

A supremely proud man, Mayweather could be heard repeatedly accusing the 24-year-old of disrespect while threatening to “kill” the “motherf*cker”.

“Honestly – have had three easy fights as a pro so been itching for some real action,” Paul said on social media afterwards, referencing his victories over pitifully poor opponents in his boxing career so far, most recently trouncing ex-NBA star Nate Robinson and former UFC fighter Ben Askren in two novelty encounters.

“One of Floyd’s 30 bodyguards got a clean shot on me in the eye. Respect.”

Matters were less physical but arguably more poisonous inside the stadium, where Logan Paul brought his record of one fight, one defeat – against fellow YouTuber KSI – to the stage as he towered over the relatively diminutive Mayweather.

The unbeaten 50-fight fighter called Paul his “grandchild” and offered to fight both brothers on the same night, which he could likely do with confidence given the ease with which he has disposed of established fighters during his decorated career.

Evoking a shocking misjudgement by Paul when he filmed himself with friends telling jokes next to what appeared to be a dead body in a forest in Japan in 2017, Mayweather, who has a huge audience in Japan and held a lucrative fight there, told him: “I know what you did in Japan.”

In a tasteless response, Paul fired back by telling Mayweather that he knew “what you did to your wife” – a likely reference to Mayweather’s history of charges for domestic violence, which have included a brief jail sentence.

Jake Paul, meanwhile, portrayed himself with a torn shirt, looking into the camera to laugh “got your f*cking hat” before touting baseball caps that were already on sale online, branded with the words “gotcha hat”.

It came across as emblematic of the money-making mismatch that the main event will undoubtedly be, and a dispiriting validation of scenes that even a showboater of Mayweather’s standards should have had the sense to steer clear of.

Also on rt.com UFC boss Dana White takes aim at ‘dildos’ in Jake Paul pay row, says YouTuber’s ‘15 minutes are almost up’

Author: RT
This post originally appeared on RT Sport News

A proper boxing fight is finally about to break out

Somewhere among the profanities, pointless rows, security guards and brawls outside of the ring, a record-breaking fight in the US is about to take place. It is easy to forget that the final product is a genuinely enticing one.

There is something of a piece about Floyd Mayweather and Jake Paul going at each other like playground enemies in Miami. Towards the end of another week full of words and devoid of substance, a spat over a single stolen hat seems strangely reflective of what boxing all too frequently appears to have come to.

Though there is little anticipation for a fight in which a sporting great sullies his legacy by sharing a ring with a yapping novice, there is considerably greater appetite for Tyson Fury’s heavyweight showdown with Anthony Joshua.

Fury has variously claimed to be a daily drunkard, enraged with promoters, sifting through the documents with the ease of a man picking a pair of trainers from a catalogue and on the brink of an ostensibly pointless trilogy fight with Deontay Wilder.

Also on rt.com ‘Canelo’s never faced a Fighting Gypsy’: Fury backs ‘different breed’ Saunders ahead of blockbuster Alvarez clash

That no-one involved in setting up Fury against Joshua seems aware of how draining the endless verbal shadowboxing has become is testimony to the reserves of anticipation around the world for the contest.

Fights involving Billy Joe Saunders are usually less eagerly awaited. A master of wide points victories with an air of inevitability about them, Saunders is a stylish southpaw whose immense ring talents have been almost fatally undermined by his abrasve persona and litany of incidents outside the ring that have earned him around $ 160,000 in fines from the British Boxing Board of Control in recent years.

Now he is part of the most popular indoor fight in US boxing history. At least 60,000 fans are expected to crowd the AT&T Stadium in Texas on Saturday, breaking the record under a roof Stateside and providing the largest attendance at any event in the country for 14 months or so.

Also on rt.com ‘No way the fight is off’: Boxing superstar Canelo opponent Saunders mocked after claim he’s quit scrap over ring size row (VIDEO)

It would be absurd to suggest that the vast majority are not there to see Mexican megaster Canelo, the vastly experienced heavy hitter whose only defeat was against Floyd Mayweather. Yet Saunders is not there to make up the numbers in the ring.

If any fighter is unlikely to be intimidated by the daunting prospect of facing Canelo, it is the irrepressibly chest-thumping Saunders. He will likely relish taking the underdog tag for what will probably be the first time in his unblemished 30-fight career, his only troubles in the past having come when he has glaringly failed to prepare properly for fights, toiling to victory when he should have cantered against lesser opponents.

There was no need for the preposterous, predictable row over the ring size that went on earlier this week, the suggestion that Saunders would walk away from a multi-million dollar payday always seeming farcical.

Also on rt.com ‘You are a f*cking p*ssy’: Boxing great Canelo hits back at Billy Joe Saunders’ mob in hotel flashpoints over size of ring (VIDEO)

Then there was the effective admission that he wants a larger canvas around which to steer clear of Canelo’s clubbing shots, which is a sensible idea for any fighter with ambitions of staying on their feet, but does little to bolster Saunders’ claims of granite confidence.

Roy Jones Jr, one of the few fighters to eclipse Saunders in terms of movement, has said that his savvy smartness should give the hefty underdog a real chance of springing a surprise. Making more certain predictions is especially tricky in this fight, bearing in mind Saunders’ volatility and Canelo’s ability to blast anyone out with brutal speed.

On his last two trips abroad, Saunders beat David Lemieux in Canada for the WBO middleweight title with such ease that he was able to raise his hand and take a glance around the arena mid-fight, showboating to symbolize the skills that scuppered any hope the home fighter had of avoiding a unanimous decision defeat.

Saunders also produced a punishing late knockout of Marcelo Esteban Coceres on the undercard of the big-selling novelty fight between Logan Paul and KSI in 2019, which he will hope made Americans remember the name when they were buying tickets in their tens of thousands for his meeting with the toughest opponent of his career on Saturday.

Also on rt.com Canelo challenger Saunders taunts boxing superstar over failed drugs test, tells reporter his breath smells ‘like sh*t’ (VIDEO)

The Briton will not care about that, though. Even if the fight outcome goes to form, Saunders is likely to remain as inscrutably pragmatic and pugnacious as he is elusive in the ring.

That layer of mystery and unpredictability is what intrigues about this blockbuster event. Saunders has often looked like he was scarcely breaking sweat while seeing off a long succession of British challengers, never facing anyone of Canelo’s class.

Without trespassing into cliches, it is a match-up that could end quickly or endure absorbingly, and at least one reputation is likely to be established and, perhaps, set in stone by the end.

The imminence of a genuine contest between two fine fighters, in the ring rather than in front of a media scrum or hotel attendants, is a welcome one. If it can remind its vast audience that there is a sport rather than a soap opera to thank for such nights, that would resemble an element of redemption among the nonsense.

By Ben Miller

Also on rt.com Hat’ll do: More shame for boxing as Floyd Mayweather threatens to kill Jake Paul in chaotic, violent brawl after face-off (VIDEO)

Author: RT
This post originally appeared on RT Sport News

Canelo challenger Saunders taunts boxing superstar

Canelo Alvarez rival and boxing badboy Billy Joe Saunders has engaged in more provocative behavior ahead of their super-middleweight clash in Texas on Saturday, teasing the Mexican over his infamous “tainted beef” drug test shame.

The pair faced off on Wednesday evening in the US, with Saunders – who, like Tyson Fury hails from the Traveller community – telling his Mexican dance partner, “the gypsies are here”.

He then moved on to a drug test Canelo failed in 2018, when he was set to face Gennady Golovkin in a rematch of their draw the previous year for the unified middleweight championship.

Testing positive for traces of the banned substance clenbuterol, the pound-for-pound great blamed the outcome on contaminated meat.

“You had loads of beef? The Mexican beef? You like that beef? You love the beef? Juicy beef?,” Saunders asked.

“You’ve never been in the ring with someone like me. Walk away, you walk away,” the Brit added, while receiving an unfazed “yeah, yeah yeah” from his opposite number in return.

Alvarez then mentioned Saunders’ own failed drug test, when oxilofrine, a fat-burning drug, was detected in his system before his fight against Demetrius Andrade.

“It was actually him who tested positive – twice actually,” said Canelo. “In my case, it was clenbuterol – the minimum, the content from the meat. It was actually him who tested positive twice.”

On Twitter, Canelo posted a picture of them facing off with the caption: “Less talk, more action”.

When asked why he hadn’t shown for their scheduled first face off, Saunders told reporters: “Yesterday, I was in my room playing with my balls.

“There was no time for media yesterday because it was my time for playing with my balls.”

Earlier this week, the fighters and their camps were involved in another heated exchange in a disagreement over the size of the ring at the Cowboys Stadium raged.

Tom Saunders, the WBO champion’s father, claimed that talks had broken down beyond repair despite his son accepting a ring which was 2ft smaller than the maximum 24ft size allowed.

He added that Canelo, a counter-puncher who goes on the front foot to walk down his opponents with a series of body blows, wanted the ring to span just 20ft.

Warning: video contains swearing

Passing through a hotel on Tuesday, Canelo was told to “grow some b*llocks” by team Saunders.

The 30-year-old responded by calling his antagonist a “f*cking p*ssy” and, in another incident, gave Saunders’ camp a thumbs down from a distance.

“We respect you, you are the champion – there’s no need to be like that, come on. We just want fairness, that’s all. I’m just asking him a question,” insisted the same individual, who had told Alvarez to grow a pair.

“The truth is, I don’t care about the size of the ring. I’m going to go in there and do my job,” remarked Canelo.

“It’s not the only excuse that he’s had, he’s had plenty of excuses. I’m just going to go in there and do what I got to do.

“Nothing frustrates me. I’m just focused on winning on Saturday. I’m calm.”

While the mind games and one-upmanship continue, promotor Eddie Hearn and Alvarez trainer Eddy Reynoso celebrated the fact that a 70,000 attendance at the weekend will smash the record for the biggest indoor crowd in American boxing history.

That was set for the Muhammad Ali vs. Leon Spinks heavyweight championship rematch in New Orleans in 1978, which received a whopping 63,352 punters.

While Ali reclaimed his belts at the Superdome, boxing legend Roy Jones Jr believes a similar result as the original split decision victory for Spinks – dubbed the Upset of the Year by Ring Magazine at the time – could be on the cards.

“I give Billy Joe a really good chance,” Jones told IFL TV. “The toughest two fights [Canelo’s] had in his career, to me, were Floyd Mayweather Jr, who’s a pure boxer, and a southpaw by the name of Erislandy Lara, who was a boxer.

“So if you think about those two guys, who’s Billy Joe closely related to the boxing ring? Those two guys.

“He’s a boxer, he’s southpaw, and he can punch, but he thinks boxing first, much like Tyson Fury. When you got a guy like that, the only problem Billy Joe’s going to have is, can he last long enough early to get to those late rounds without sustaining any injuries, cuts, headbutts, anything?

“He has to figure out how to make up for that ring rust before he gets in there, because if he can get into the fight right away, he has a very good chance of winning it.

Warning: video contains swearing

“If he doesn’t get into the fight right away, then he’ll get blown away, but he’s a very smart guy, he’s a boxer, he’s a smart boxer.”

Less impressed by Saunders, though, were online boxing enthusiasts disgusted when he told a Mexican journalist his breath “smells like sh*t”.

“As a Saunders fan, I have to say that is horrible and disrespectful,” admitted one.

“Disrespect. But I wouldn’t expect anything less from the classless, immature Saunders,” remarked a Saunders critic, while another warned: “He’s an idiot who’s getting slammed.”

Also on rt.com ‘You are a f*cking p*ssy’: Boxing great Canelo hits back at Billy Joe Saunders’ mob in hotel flashpoints over size of ring (VIDEO)

Author: RT
This post originally appeared on RT Sport News

Boxing superstar Canelo opponent Saunders mocked after claim

Canelo Alvarez foe Billy Joe Saunders has been mocked after his father, Tommy, claimed that the fighter was preparing to fly back to Britain today because the two sides cannot agree over the size of the ring for Saturday’s scrap.

In an apparently emotional interview, notorious wind-up merchant Saunders’ dad insisted that the much-anticipated biggest fight of his offspring’s career was off, adding that his entourage had been told to pay for their flights home because of an argument centered around 2ft of ring space.

Modern great Canelo is said to want a smaller ring at the AT&T Stadium in Texas, where more than 60,000 fans are expected to watch the pair meet despite Saunders senior warning ticket holders and pay-per-view subscribers to ask for refunds just four days before the scheduled bout.

“The negotiations have broken down, big time,” he told iFL, comparing Canelo to a baby having a tantrum.

“I’m not going to let my son box in a 20ft ring against the supposed pound-for-pound king of boxing. They’re trying to take his legs away.

“He is adamant he wants to go home. We’re not going to take this bulls*** any more.

“Canelo’s chucked his rattle, bottle and whatever out of his pram because someone’s said no to him.”

Echoing the fighter’s earlier complaints, Saunders seethed that Canelo had initially asked for an “amateur” 18ft ring and moved up to 20ft, while his opponent’s team had moved down from a 24ft ring and are willing to accept a 22ft compromise.

He said he was “absolutely gutted” that the fight was seemingly off, strongly suggesting that Saunders’ renowned movement would be limited by a smaller ring.

The curious pre-flight flashpoint reminded many fans of the build-up provided by Saunders’ close friend and teammate, heavyweight champion Tyson Fury, before he dethroned Wladimir Klitschko in Dusseldorf in 2015.

Fury’s uncle, Peter, angrily threatened to call that fight off at extremely short notice over a heated argument about the firmness of the ring canvas, making a clear point to Klitschko that he would not have everything his own way.

Saunders believes that Canelo has enforced similar advantages in the build-up to his previous wins over the likes of Briton Callum Smith, jibing that the Mexican megastar would love the opportunity to stipulate that Saunders should fight with a hand tied behind his back.

The wrangle has left Eddie Hearn with work to do to ensure a fight goes ahead during fight week for the second time this month.

Last week, heavyweight Derek Chisora’s mother had to be called to ensure that the Londoner proceeded with his encounter against Joseph Parker after he voiced a series of last-minute complaints.

Fury’s bull-headed mindgames paid off against the evidently rattled Klitschko, and team Saunders will be hoping for a similar upset on Saturday.

“I don’t think he wants to fight Billy Joe,” said his father. “He’s seen a few clips of him and he doesn’t fancy it.

“That’s what’s going to win this fight – his movement. If Canelo gets beat, it’s the end of the gravy train for them all. That’s what it comes down to.”

Fury beat the Ukrainian giant in a ring spanning the maximum 24ft of space. His emphatic victory in the US over Deontay Wilder last year took place in a 20ft setting.

British super-middleweight contender John Ryder, who is due to be on commentary duties for the fight, said he had packed his “gloves, gumshield and boots” in readiness to step in should Saunders go ahead with scuppering the multi-million dollar main event.

“I agree with the stance he’s taking,” Ryder told Boxing News about the man he lost to on points in 2013. “I agree with the fuss he’s kicking up.

“A bigger ring suits him but if it was that important, it really should be stipulated in the contracts and agreed way before fight week.

“His best way of winning is to have a bigger ring and get the movement off. Canelo sees himself as the A-side – he’s right to stick to his guns and say no.

“We know Billy Joe likes a bit of fight week antics and I’m sure Canelo’s happy to oblige him. [But] they’ve trained for each other: they both want to fight, they’re desperate to fight.”

Fans largely agreed. “Sounds like when Fury fought for the title in Germany,” observed one. “All mind games. No way the fight is off.”

Also on rt.com ‘Canelo’s never faced a Fighting Gypsy’: Fury backs ‘different breed’ Saunders ahead of blockbuster Alvarez clash

Author: RT
This post originally appeared on RT Sport News