Duh duh duh duh duh..Another card bites the dust….duh duh duh duh…another card bites the dust…hey hey hey
More shitty news has stunk up the air of this horrible second half of 2021. The boxing calendar was looking pretty strong in the second half of this year with Teofimo Lopez against George Kambosos, that fight was killed by COVID. Deontay Wilder and Tyson Fury were set to do it again, COVID killed their fight, well it depends on who you ask. Canelo Alvarez was all but lined up to face Caleb Plant to fully unify all four titles at super middleweight, negotiations fell apart. Last but not least, Errol Spence Jr. suffered an eye injury in camp and his August 21st date with Manny Pacquiao is off. Pacquiao vs Spence was arguably the biggest fight of 2021 and was a highly discussed match up of old lion vs young lion and just an intriguing fight on paper. Where do we go from here?
Lopez vs Kambosos: This fight is not fully back on just yet. Triller, the new streaming platform that won the purse bid was trying to take the fight to Australia in order to try and earn back what they lost from the postponement. Lopez threatened to drop the IBF belt rather than go to his challenger’s backyard and deal with a fourteen day quarantine. The fight is set to be Lopez’s career high payday at just shy of four million dollars. The date looks to be in October but nothing is set in stone yet.
Fury vs Wilder III: This is back on for October 9th barring anymore shenanigans. After a bizarre press conference and a long drawn out legal process to get this fight made it was postponed. Fury and members of his team got COVID though some of his biggest detractors think it was to delay a fight that he was unprepared for. Fury was preparing for Anthony Joshua when that fight fell apart and the change of opponents and the date fast approaching has left some wondering if the Fury team is telling the truth. Fury did look flabby at the press conference but who knows with him, he is such a wild card. Wilder is training like a man on a mission and though Fury should be 2-0 over Wilder and it feels like a given after the drubbing Fury handed him, this feels like it is getting closer. Maybe they are selling the hell out of it but damn Wilder looks like he is making improvements with new trainer Malik Scott. Obviously quick clips on social media mean about as much as the stare down but I am way more interested in this fight now than I was when it was originally announced.
Alvarez vs Plant: This fight fell apart at the negotiating table which is coincidental because these two have walked away from each other in the past. This time the September date was fast approaching and there was not an agreement signed. Plant was set to make a career high pay day probably eight million or more dollars than he ever made before but balked at the terms. Alvarez’s team wanted to maintain the pay day and date in the event of a postponement while not affording Plant the same opportunity. Depending on who you ask there is vast disagreement over whether Canelo is being a diva or if Plant is being really dumb with this payday. Dimitry Bivol was approached as a fill in but that fight never materialized either and for a third consecutive year Alvarez will not fight during Mexican Independence Day Weekend. The talks are back on with Plant and Bivol in the passenger seat for a date in November, lets see what happens.
Pacquiao vs Spence: This fight is off after Spence was found to have a torn retina. This injury used to be a death sentence for boxers but can now be treated with surgery though it is still very bad. Pacquiao is moving ahead with the date but this time against Cuban Yordenis Ugas who holds the WBA title that was stripped from Pacquiao during his two year absence. Ugas was scheduled to defend that belt against Fabian Maidana who had to pull out. I am a homer when it comes to Ugas and given Pacquiao’s lay off I think he is a pretty live dog. Spence has lost out on a massive payout and a huge popularity boost with this fight falling apart. Given Manny’s age I am losing some interest in this fight especially if it takes over a year for it to materialize again. This is a big hit for Spence who had to come off of an auto accident related lay off after his win over Shawn Porter. I am hoping Spence and Terrence Crawford can meet before that fight dies on the vine as well. With young talent like Vergil Ortiz and Jaron Ennis moving the older guard at welterweight may get knocked off soon by this emerging class of fighters.
That said the best untouched fight on the schedule is Anthony Joshua vs Oleksandr Usyk and let us pray to the boxing gods that this fight goes forward without a hiccup.