This Week's Boxing Notebook: Mosley-Berto, David Haye, & Z Gorres

November 19, 2009

Here is a recap of some of the top happenings surrounding the sweet science:

Mosley-Berto Officially On

Just hours prior to Saturday's Pacquiao-Cotto bout, Golden Boy Promotions announced that Sugar Shane Mosley (46-5) and young Andre Berto (25-0) will be fighting for Berto's WBC welterweight title on January 30 at the Mandalay Bay in Las Vegas, Nevada.

The news ended months of speculation, posturing, and occasionally disrespectful dialogue between the two fighters' camps.

Such intense back-and-forth chatter should only escalate as the fight approaches because there is so much risk involved for both fighters.

For sure-fire future Hall of Famer Mosley, a loss would mean the end of any hopes for his much-desired big money fight against either Manny Pacquiao or Floyd Mayweather.

For young Berto, the fight will be his first attempt at defeating a legitimate, elite fighter, which Mosley certainly still remains. A loss would signify that Berto still is not ready to make the transition from prospect to prime time.

Berto's camp has already fired the first salvo in what is sure to be an ongoing attempt to boost their man's morale while simultaneously casting doubt in Sugar Shane's mind, stating that Mosley's recent victory over Antonio Margarito was of little real significance because Margarito was a limited fighter who was mentally shaken by the discovery of his illegal hand wraps just moments before the fight.

However, it would be wise to point out to both Berto and his camp that the dangerous Sugar Shane is 5-1 with 4 wins by knockout in his last six fights. His lone loss was a close, unanimous -- some would say "hometown" -- decision to Miguel Cotto in New York.

While Berto is a strong, mercurial fighter who bears an uncanny resemblance in fighting style to Mosley, he is still inexperienced, raw, and nowhere near as battle-tested as Mosley. Further, Berto struggled with Luis Collazo in a recent fight -- the same Collazo whom Mosley put on the canvas and easily defeated.

A very intriguing fight to say the least. More importantly, it should impact other future 2010 fights in boxing's best division.

David Haye, Heavyweight Savior?

Fresh off his points victory over Russian Giant Nicolai Valuev earlier this month, Cyprus-based (by way of London) heavyweight David Haye held an informal session with media gathered in town for Pacquiao-Cotto.

With other standout UK boxers like Amir Khan in attendance, Golden Boy Promoter Oscar De La Hoya made it clear that Haye is the future of the moribund heavyweight division and that he plans to have Haye face either or both Klitschko's next year. But first, Haye must prevail in his mandatory WBA title defense against (gulp, not him again!) John Ruiz -- the man whose career once again has somehow been rescued from life support.

In truth, the heavyweight division has been in shambles ever since the retirement of the underappreciated Lennox Lewis.

Because there is no Lewis-caliber fighter to give the Klitschko's a run for their money, and because the Klitschko brothers will not fight each other, the division has essentially devolved into a series of dull, one-sided beatings in which the Klitschko's crush their inferior competition.

What Haye represents however, is the kind of fighter who not only possesses outstanding athletic ability, but also has the exciting go-for-broke-style that fans appreciate. With both knockout power and a charismatic presence bordering on cockiness, the right matchmaking can make Haye a star in the division.

This last matchmaking element is crucial to his continued success because the unfortunate reality is that Haye will be considerably smaller than most of his opponents, as he is a cruiserweight moving up in weight. In fact, Haye's defeat of the Russian giant Valuev was only his second fight as a heavyweight.

In that fight, Haye showed impressive power by staggering the 7-foot plus Valuev late in the bout. However, this came after he had spent most of the night circling away and potshotting for eleven rounds.

That being said, John Ruiz is not the opponent that most fighters would typically select for their showcase performance, but it is a mandatory WBA title defense that Haye must fulfill.

If Haye gets past Ruiz's plodding tactics, Golden Boy should look at Mexican-American heavyweight Chris Arreola as a possible future opponent. Arreola would first have to pass a stiff test of his own against former college football star and rising American contender Derric Rossy, but if he is successful, Arreola could provide Haye with an exciting, name-building stepping stone in preparation for a showdown with either Klitschko.

Z Gorres in Stable Condition

As is sometimes the case with the sport of professional prizefighting, there is also sad news to report this week, as popular Filipino super flyweight contender Z Gorres was hospitalized in Las Vegas after collapsing on his way back to the dressing room following his convincing unanimous decision win over Luis Melendez on Friday.

According to published reports from ringside, Gorres was dominating and looked to be cruising to an easy decision when he was caught with a hard shot and dropped with about 30 seconds to go in the final round.

Although he was able to rise and hold on for the final bell, Gorres collapsed on his way out of the ring and was immediately rushed to an area hospital, where brain swelling and a possible blood clot were discovered. Reports indicate that a medically-induced coma along with a procedure that removed part of the skull were implemented in order to relieve the swelling.

Gorres is now in stable condition and conscious.

Gorres is perhaps best known for a controversial draw against then-undisputed super flyweight champ Vic Darchinyan in February of last year.

The thoughts and prayers of the entire staff of the are with the family of ZC Oliveros Gorres during this trying and difficult time.

We wish you a speedy recovery champ!

By Kweku Turkson
Staff Reporter for

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