Now that is officially Thanksgiving, it seems pertinent to give thanks for a wonderful holiday season of fights. While many of us are winding down for the year and preparing to do lots of sleeping eating and drinking, there are many fighters who will not be joining us. This year has been filled with huge moments from Abner Mares’ stunning upset defeat to the resurgence of the light heavyweight division. Here are some the things fight fans should be thankful for this holiday season.
An Active Floyd Mayweather jr
Love him or hate him, there is no denying that Mayweather is the most polarizing figure in boxing, and possibly all of sports. Mayweather’s six fight Showtime deal has given him a new found desire to stay active. This year saw Mayweather dominate Saul Alvarez and Robert Guerrero to become the lineal champion of two different division. With two fights already scheduled for next year, the boxing world has been dying to know who he will face next. Although there is currently a lack of intriguing options, there is plenty of time between now and May for someone to establish themselves.
The Revival Of The Light Heavyweight Division
One of the most storied and revered divisions in boxing, for the last few years has been the seniors tour of the sport. Well that all changed this year with the emergence of two of the most exciting power punchers in all of boxing. Adonis Stevenson crushed Chad Dawson inside of a round to become the lineal light heavyweight champion. Stevenson ended lucky punch claims by then destroying and stopping former champion Tavoris Cloud a few months later. Sergey Kovalev started his 2013 out by flattening Gabriel Campillo, and then went on to brutalize Nathan Cleverly to become an alphabet champion. Stevenson and Kovalev will both be in action this weekend, and should both win, all roads point to them meeting in one of the most anticipated action fights in years.
HBO and Showtime’s Cold War
It all started with Showtime poaching Saul Alvarez in 2012, and was elevated by Floyd Mayweather following suit earlier this year. HBO then announced that they would no longer stage any fights promoted by Goldenboy Promotions. The announcement was loudly protested by fans and seemed to be a massive mistake. One thing that cannot be denied though, is we have gotten better fights as a result of the feud. Showtime now stages triple and quadruple headers which are stacked from top to bottom, and HBO now showcases more international fights than they have in the past. Both networks have been forced to step up their games, which leaves the fans winning in the long run.
A Healthy Andre Ward
Andre Ward has emerged as the consensus pound for pound number two in the sport, although the one thing he has lacked has been durability. His surgery repaired shoulder seemed to hold up fine during his return bout against Edwin Rodriguez, and he claims to feel better than ever. Ward has tons of great options for the next few years, and the sport is much more exciting with him fighting rather than commentating.
Erislandy Lara vs Austin Trout
December 7th,on the under-card of Judah vs Malignaggi, boxing fans will be treated to one of the most intriguing fights of the year. Both men could arguably be undefeated, and are two of the most talented fighters in the sport. They both have had trouble getting big name fights, so instead they will fight each other. The sky is the limit for the winner, and the loser will have one more reason to be avoided. Expect both men to lay it all on the line.
Whether or not you are buying into the hype yet, Gennady Golovkin is undoubtedly one of the most exciting fighters in all of boxing. His knockout percentage is the highest of any champion in boxing, and he loves to be active. Golovkin fought four times this year and plans to do the same next year. Highly anticipated fights against Andre Ward and Sergio Martinez will certainly be on Golovkin’s wishlist this Christmas, lets hope he has a happy Christmas.
Those are a few of the things I am thankful for this holiday season. It has been an amazing year already, and it isn’t over just yet. This year hasn’t been so great for everyone however; one person who should be on all our minds this Thanksgiving is Magomed Abdusalamov. Abdusalamov is still being kept alive by life support and will likely never fully recover. It was a situation that could have been avoided with better corner-men and officials. Hopefully this tragedy can lead to something good, and possibly save future injuries.
What are some boxing moments that you are thankful for this year? Let me know in the comments section below, and have a great Thanksgiving, wherever you are.