Thursday, October 02, 2008

Avila, on Boxing: Pomona's Mosley should retire while he's still healthy

Submitted by Bill O'Neill
Special to The Press-Enterprise
Three Inland-area boxers grabbed center stage last week, sparking national and international attention.
Pomona's Shane Mosley, Riverside's Chris Arreola and Rialto's Dominic Salcido engaged in a trio of electrifying fights last week, and the results definitely shook up several weight divisions.
Maybe it's the beginning of a new age for Inland-area boxing.

Ricardo Mayorga (right) goes down after Shane Mosley connects with a left for a 12th-round knockout Saturday.

Former lightweight, welterweight and junior middleweight champion Mosley returned to fight in Southern California for the first time in eight years and found a willing partner in Nicaragua's Ricardo Mayorga.

Mosley, 37, has always shown tremendous courage inside the ring, especially accepting fights against boxers others fear or avoid. He could have ignored Vernon Forrest and Winky Wright, but Mosley let them slip into the door to elite status by accepting their challenges. When welterweights began avoiding Miguel Cotto, it was Mosley who tapped on Top Rank officials' shoulders to say: "Yoo-hoo, I'll fight Cotto."

Now Mosley wants to fight WBA welterweight monster Antonio Margarito.

That's what I mean. Mosley has no fear, but maybe he should.

I'm not alone in saying that Mosley is one of the nicest guys in the brutal sport in which about five of its brethren die each year from punishment sustained in a bout. From his first year, Mosley has brought his eye-catching style of boxing at 100 mph.

But that was back in 1992. Today, the speedster has slipped a bit and probably ramps it up to 85 mph. Now that's still good for most, but Mosley is an elite boxer. He's Hall of Fame stuff.

After watching Mosley struggle with Mayorga for 12 rounds, it was apparent that it was going to take time to slip into "Sugar Shane" mode. Mayorga's quirky style has always proved perplexing for classic boxer-punchers.
Mosley emerged victorious, but he may have hit the ceiling level for talent with Mayorga. Anybody bigger, younger or faster than the Nicaraguan is going to give the 2008 version of Mosley a lot of trouble.

During the post-fight news conference, someone asked if he would fight WBC titleholder Andre Berto, who had just beaten Steve Forbes by decision. Immediately Mosley said he didn't want to fight one of the young guys. It's the big guys with the big names he's after.

But most feel Mosley should hang up the gloves before he gets damaged.

"I said I'm a warrior," said Mosley about his thrill-the-crowd style. "That's what the fans wanted to see."
Most want to see Mosley retire healthy more than anything.

Quick Work for Arreola
Chris Arreola has been anointed by HBO's boxing coverage team as the great American hope of the heavyweight division. And with those lofty expectations comes pressure.

When Arreola, 27, arrived in the ring with temperatures hovering above 90 degrees, there were sportswriters from large media outlets watching the budding star. Despite weighing the most in his very young career at 258 very visible pounds, the Mexican-American hopeful blasted out New York City's Israel "King Kong" Garcia like an annoying fly on the screen door.

"Truthfully, I was very concerned," said Henry Ramirez, who trains Arreola and a number of other excellent boxers from Riverside. "But everything worked out."

It took Arreola three rounds of sizzling uppercuts from combinations that broke down Garcia's defense and solid chin.

Arreola will probably face the toughest test of his career Nov. 29 when his promoter, Goossen-Tutor Promotions, puts him against an as-yet-to-be-selected top-10 heavyweight contender on a card that will also feature WBO welterweight titleholder Paul Williams in co-main events. There are rumors that the card could end up in Southern California.

1 comment:

Frank said...

I known Mosley since he was about 9years old, when he was 16-17 years old he spar with Frankie and Tony, and I seen him get hit with hard punches in the gym and in fights, I would like to see him hang the gloves up while he can still count his money.

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