Tuesday, May 1, 2007
The Legend of Baby Bull
This past weekend, Juan Diaz unified the titles in brutal and beautiful fashion. Diaz is a Houston fighter, described by Max Kellerman as the equivalent of a guy who doesn't hit hard but rather hits often. I have heard the comparison plenty of times from plenty of places; I'd like to ask Acelino Freitas what he thinks of that. Popo quit on his stool after the eighth round because Baby Bull was hitting him with constant pressure.
This fight was a benchmark between two fighters in the top five of the division. Diaz
is one of two champs to hold two belts (the other being Jermain Taylor). He is undefeated with a decent knockout ratio. Diaz was on the mat early in his career against a man named Ubaldo Hernandez. Diaz had a large cut over his eye and was only seventeen at the time but managed to secure a split decision.
Baby Bull's moves are unique, fascinating and emphaticlly effective. He can easily fight inside and gnaw at an opponent coming forward, trapping them against the ropes or in the corner of the ring. His body work is sharp and excellent and he can hook upstairs just as easily. He uppercuts, has spectacular fundamental hand defense and circular movement on his slip and fires a deceptive jab at tremendous volume. Diaz didn't even look tired talking to Max Kellerman about his future plans after the fight.
"'I'm going after all the champions in the lightweight division,' he said. 'Give me a champion and I'll fight him.'"
Seems rational. Juan wants a third and fourth belt in order to be the indisputed champion of the world. Dan Rafael doesn't agree. Apparently his next blog post (which is not linked to ESPN but is described ont he boxing home page) says the Diaz has to fight Joel Casamayor if he wants to be the REAL champ.
Dan Rafael is one of the snootiest sports columnists on ESPN and is entirely misdirected in even beggining to type that post. First, Rafael must have missed the second half of Diaz's quotation:
"'Bring Casamayor on. In the people's eyes, when you have all the belts, you're a true champion.'"
Juan Diaz said right there that he is not scared of Casamayor and would agree to fight him in immediate principle. Secondly, Diaz is suggesting something that is old school, legitimate and a cornerstone of modern boxing. The alphabet soup organizations in boxing have no credibility as sanctioning parties because they are like tiny little corrupt governments stomping on fighters, coaches and fans worldwide. However, if Diaz held all the titles then he would hold all the cards. The organizations would have to all protect him at the same time so that he did not have to give up his title.
Third, Rafael is acting like fellow titleholders David Diaz(32-1-1) and Julio Diaz (34-3) (whole lotta Diaz going on here) are chopped liver when they are actually competitive matchups and deserving of more than the paper title they hold in their hands.
Finally, there is a matter of math and making the biggest fights at the end of the boxing tunnel. How's this for a setup: Casamayor fights David Diaz, Julio and Juan fight and we have a unifier between the winners. The last man standing is the champ. That man's last name will be Diaz or Casamayor and I would kill to see him move up for a Pacman showdown.
Realistic? Probably not. The best fight plan? Absolutely.
Let the fists fly. Rumble, young bull, rumble.
Posted by Dan at 10:01 PM
Labels: Boxing, Don King is Corrupt, Juan Diaz, The undefeated LIHT-WEIGHT CHAMPION OF THE WOOOOOOORRRLLLDD...