Published On: Fri, Nov 30th, 2012

Jabs and Hooks – 30th November Edition

Hard Copy – Jabs and Hooks 30th November Edition

Continuing our new look at combat sports – Jabs and Hooks – Hard-Copy will be previewing every weekend’s big combat sports events both nationally and internationally before they happen, and deal with the fallout that remains once the dust has settled the following Monday.

This weekend’s boxing action:

Friday Night on BoxNation

-          Freddie Flintoff vs. Richard Dawson

-          David Price vs. Matt Skelton

Saturday Night on BoxNation

-          Miguel Cotto vs. Austin Trout

Saturday Night on Channel Five

-          Tyson Fury vs. Denis Boytsov


This weekend’s MMA action:

Saturday Night on Channel Five

-          BAMMA 11


Another weekend without the UFC putting on a show means another boxing dominated couple of days for all the combat sports fans out there in the world. None of the fights are world-changers, but all are interesting in their own right. As for MMA, Channel Five showcases a live BAMMA show featuring a couple of names that should be familiar to anyone who follows the Scottish MMA scene.


The Flintoff Debut

Most likely a curiosity for anyone interested in seeing exactly what someone having their first boxing match on live television looks like. Freddie Flintoff is of course a big sporting name in the UK, but who knows what will happen when he takes his rudimentary skills into the boxing ring against someone who has been boxing for a few months longer than he has. I wouldn’t expect a boxing clinic, but with Flintoff really putting himself out there he will be eager to avoid embarrassment. As for his opponent, he’s only 2-0 in his own career, but at least he’s experienced the ring before.


Tyson Fury and David Price Both in Action…

…just not against each other. Britain’s newest heavyweight hopefuls both take on serviceable opposition in their quest towards the World Heavyweight Championship. Price takes on former British Champion Matt Skelton, who while past his prime should provide a sterner test than Audley Harrison, who Price knocked out in seconds earlier in the year. Price has publicly stated he isn’t yet ready for either Wladimir or Vitali Klitschko, and the rumour is that should he come through against Skelton, his next opponent is likely to be Dereck Chisora.


Fury faces a far sterner test in Boytsov, undefeated in thirty-one contests, with twenty-five wins by knockout. Fury, differing from David Price, feels he is ready for either Klitschko now and is looking towards securing a contender’s fight in the near future if successful here. This fight will prove to be a real test for Tyson Fury, who while being as divisive a character as he is, has shown improvements in his overall game and wouldn’t be as outmatched against the Klitschko brothers as many would think.


However, the fight that should have been made, and should be being built up by this stage, is one between both Price and Fury, with the winner going on to challenge for World honours. Sadly, boxing politics rears its ugly head and will no doubt scupper any chances of this fight happening for the foreseeable future. With Fury being signed with Channel Five and Price on BoxNation, neither channel will allow their fighter to compete against the other.


The idea of the best boxers fighting each other, domestically or internationally, simply doesn’t make sense to TV networks it seems. The likelihood is that it’s more about cents.


First it was promoters, now we have television networks deciding which fights can and cannot take place – keeping fights that the public wants to see and that the sport needs to happen from happening. To those disillusioned with boxing, this is a familiar situation.


Key Quotes (courtesy of BadLeftHook):

David Price on his plans (From the Daily Star):

“After I get Skelton out of the way Dereck is the only one left at domestic level. There is David Haye, but it looks like a world title or nothing for him.”


Tyson Fury’s Promoter Mick Hennessey (From the Daily Mirror):


“The fight with Wladimir will be a stadium fight and we would be looking to do it in May, June or July. Germany would be the favourite place for it to happen, but I’ve spoken to them about Old Trafford or Croke Park.”

“They are ­businessmen and we know that it would sell out. They would prefer to work with us rather than any other candidates.”


Miguel Cotto Stays Busy

Most journalists and fans have written off Austin Trout as a glorified ‘tune-up’ for a potential Cotto vs. Saul Alavarez clash next year. They might be right, but that’s the same thing that they thought about Josesito Lopez when he faced off against Victor Ortiz; another potential Alvarez challenger, earlier this year. Lopez pulled off the upset and went on to lose to Alvarez in an entertaining scrap, while Ortiz rued taking his opponent lightly. For Trout, this fight serves as a one-and-only shot at the big time. When a man is fighting not just for the right to challenge for a world title, but for proverbial ‘bread and milk’, he must be taken seriously.

Cotto has always been a solid professional and now enters the final stages of his career, one which will see him remembered as a modern great and most likely a future Hall of Fame inductee. The potential title unification fight against the 22 year old phenom ‘Canelo’ Alvarez will be on everyone’s minds come Saturday night.

Everyone apart from Austin Trout.


Key quotes from the pre-fight press conference:

Austin Trout:

“I want to thank Miguel Cotto for remaining the hungry fighter that he is. He’s doing what other champions in this weight class won’t do, and that’s take on the challenge of fighting Austin Trout. Even to unify, some people still won’t do it. I thank Miguel for this opportunity because all we ever wanted was a chance. We’ve had to go above and beyond, under the radar to make chances happen. Again, thank you Miguel for this chance. It’s all we’ve asked for. And it’s all I need, is one chance.”

“Saturday night I plan on making history, and not in the form of letting Miguel be a five-time world champion, but in the form of being the only person to beat Miguel Cotto in New York. I’m gonna be the first to do it, and I feel good. I’ve had a great camp. There’s nothing left to do but to do the damn thing.”

“Saturday night it’s going to happen. It’s going to be done. It’s not going to be easy, but we’re not here for easy. We didn’t jump into this game to have an easy time or an easy road. The harder the hurdle, the greater the victory. I’m looking forward to having my hand raised.


Miguel Cotto:

“I don’t have much to say. (Trout’s manager) mentioned they were in Panama, they beat a Panamanian guy. They were in Guadalajara, they beat Rigoberto Alvarez. Now they’re in New York. They’re not going to have any of those guys in front of them. They’re going to have Miguel Cotto, and the story’s going to be different.”



Alex Reid makes his return to MMA on this Birmingham based show, but the men to watch out for are Steven Ray and James Doolan – long-time Stalwarts of Scottish MMA, both based in Glasgow. The Lightweight Ray fights as part of the Edge MMA team and Bantamweight Doolan as part of the Dinky Ninjas Fight Team. Both are value for money and should be entertaining viewing in the cage. It’s not often that you get to see Scottish MMA fighters on national television, so fans should take the time to check it out if they can.


Tune into Hard Copy come Monday for all the reaction to the weekend’s fight action when Jabs and Hooks returns.


Adil Qazi