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Is Errol Spence, Jr. Fighting with a Chip on His Shoulder?


PhilBoxing.com





Back in March 2019 in front of his hometown in Texas, Errol Spence, Jr. (27-0, 21KOs) had just successfully defended his IBF welterweight title by defeating then undefeated former 4 division champion Mikey Garcia with a unanimous decision. The fight was so one sided that it was a struggle for observers to score one single round of the twelve in favor of Garcia.

At the post fight press conference, Spence admitted to doing something that most elite fighters are too proud to admit to, which was he actually reads what the boxing media wrote about him, which was many had picked Mikey Garcia to defeat him. Spence had also expressed his disappointment that while Garcia had a lot of Latino support for the fight, Fans that he thought would have supported him had supported Garcia. This all had given Spence extra motivation to defeat Garcia and prove all those who favored Garcia over him wrong.

Currently, Spence is the unified WBC/IBF welterweight champion. He won his IBF welterweight championship from Kell Brook back in 2017. He added the WBC title in 2019 by defeating Shawn Porter. Overall, Spence has made a total of 5 defenses of his welterweight championship. Hard core fight fans want and still want to see him fight fellow welterweight WBO champion Terrance Crawford, but fans are still delighted with the upcoming fight against former eight division champion and Future Hall of famer WBA welterweight champion “in recess” Manny Pacquiao (71-7-2, 39KOs). Pacquiao is 42 years old and has not fought since 2019 which is largely due to the COVID 19 pandemic. Because of Spence physical advantages over Pacquiao and the fact that Spence is eleven years younger (31 years old), Boxing Odds initially had Spence a 4:1 favorite to defeat Pacquiao when the fight was first signed.

Pacquiao is not one to “trash talk”, is respectful of his opponents, but lets his actions in the ring speak for itself. Recent internet video footage workouts have showed Pacquiao has not declined in physical ability. Pacquiao has even stated that the time away from boxing has helped his body rest. Fighting Boxers with Physical advantages has never been a problem for Pacquiao. Please see his fights against former champions Jeff Horn and Antonio Margarito. He received a victory against Margarito and received a controversial loss against Horn, which should have been a victory. Boxing odds (as of the writing of this article) still favor Spence, but they have dropped to 2:1. Who knows what the odds will be on fight night with less than a month before the opening Bell of Pacquiao vs Spence?

If Spence has not changed his internet reading habits, he is likely monitoring all Pacquiao news online like he did prior to the Mikey Garcia fight while training for this fight against Pacquiao. Spence likely has a proverbial “chip” on his shoulder like the Mikey Garcia fight, which means he MAY be a little frustrated because with all that he has accomplished thus far in his career, it is not a foregone conclusion that he will defeat and send Pacquiao into retirement.

Spence's trainer, Derrick James, has stated "[Pacquiao] still got it. He still has the angles, he still got those intangibles that make [him] great”, according to https://www.dazn.com/en-US/news/boxing/manny-pacquiao-still-has-it-warns-errol-spence-jrs-coach-derrick-james/pmbpbq3vfdod1lln46o29h6tm. Ronnie Shields, another well know trainer, has said he would not be surprised if Pacquiao won the fight.

TWISM is an acronym for “THE WORLD IS MINE” which is an expression used when one is on top of their game and can write their own ticket because of success. That is where Errol Spence Jr. will be if he can defeat Pacquiao. Let’s all wait and see if Spence fights with a “chip” on his shoulder and can defeat Pacquiao. An angry Spence will give a good fight. Pacquiao always comes to fight at his best. That will definitely be good for boxing fans who will pay a premium dollar on PPV to watch the fight or pay even more to attend the fight in person at the T-Mobile Center in Las Vegas. This writer predicts the fight will be a great fight and picks Manny Pacquiao to win the fight against Spence 117- 111 unanimously.

Boxing Notes

Back in Feb 2019 I wrote an article entitled,
“Can Deontay Wilder be Great Part? (Part II) ”.
In that article I summed it up by saying that Wilder’s then trainers (Jay Deas and Mark Breland) had taken Wilder as far as they possibly could in his career (WBC Heavyweight Champion) and had done a good job, but much like other heavyweight champions like Lennox Lewis who changed trainers, Wilder too needed to make a change. Lennox Lewis who, after he fired Pepe Correa, hired the late great Emanuel Steward improved his skills and dominated the Heavyweights for years. Wilder dismissed Co-trainer Mark Breland for alleged misconduct. Former head trainer Jay Deas is still on the Wilder team but has been demoted. Former Wilder opponent Malik Scott has been named as Wilder’s new trainer. The question is at this late stage of Wilder’s career is can he grasp what Scott will teach in the gym or on fight night will Wilder simply revert back to relying on his power and look for one punch as he did under Deas and Breland?...Mikey Garcia is a lock for Boxing Hall of Fame when he retires. He has won titles in 4 weight classes. He wanted a fight with Manny Pacquiao BADLY and even told the media it was a done deal, only to see his former nemesis, Errol Spence beat Garcia again, but this time by securing what a Pacquiao fight. Garcia still gets a lot of criticism for the loss to Spence. Boxing critics say Garcia can’t compete at the elite level in the welterweight division because of his one-sided loss to Errol Spence a few years ago. If Garcia is unable to secure a fight with top fighters such as Keith Thurman, Danny Garcia, WBA welterweight champ Ugas or junior welterweight champion Tank Davis, It may not be a bad idea to do business with Arum’s Top Rank again (Garcia was once promoted by Arum until they severed their business ties. Garcia wanted out of his contract so bad from Arum that he was inactive nearly 2 years. A match up of Garcia and undisputed junior welterweight champion (140lbs) champion Josh Taylor is good for Garcia, if he wins. He would have more options at that point. Teofimo Lopez will eventually come to 140lbs. A fight with him and Garcia would be a PPV fight. Garcia would likely be able to secure a fight with Tank Davis which would be PPV as well. Top welterweight would be willing to fight Mikey if can deliver good PPV numbers as Garcia is of Mexican descent and is bilingual. Garcia (in this writer’s opinion) is still an elite fighter, but with no championship belt, inactivity due to the pandemic, and loss to Errol Spence at welterweight make signing the super fights difficult...It seems the only way WBO welterweight champion Terrance Crawford can get a top welterweight to fight him is if a major sanctioning body (WBO) orders the fight. WBO ordered that Crawford and Porter fight. So when fight fans want or desire a fight, If the fighter is a champion for major sanctioning body WBA, WBC,WBO, or IBF. ASK THE SANCTIONING BODY TO ORDER THE 2 FIGHTERS TO FIGHT. It’s that simple!

Contact Writer: RLuvsboxing@aol.com


***Ralph Rimpell is a writer based out of New York and is a Boxing Correspondent for Philboxing.com. Ralph holds an undergraduate degree from City University of New York. He has been a Boxing Writer for over ten years having written for several top boxing websites on the World Wide Web. Before becoming a writer, Ralph's passion was for professional wrestling until he realized professional wrestling was entertainment and not a real sport. It was at that time the 1984 US Olympic team made up of future stars such as Evander Holyfield, Meldrick Taylor, Pernell Whitaker, etc. entered the professional ranks and signed with promotional outfit Main Events.It was also at that time a young exciting Heavyweight originally hailing from Brooklyn named Mike Tyson also turned professional and became the face of boxing. Young boxing fan Ralph just couldn't get enough of boxing as a large part of it was being broadcast on "free TV". As time went on, Ralph felt boxing writers were not being forthcoming with their boxing coverage, opinion pieces, interviews, etc. So Ralph decided to write an article and submitted it to a Boxing website thinking it would be deleted and ignored by the Editor. To Ralph's surprise his article was posted on their website and the readers embraced it. The rest is history.

"I thank God for the Internet because it has created opportunities for writers like myself who likely would not have been given an opportunity to write for print publications. I hope someday soon to expand my role in Boxing on different levels." -- Ralph Rimpell



Click here to view a list of other articles written by Ralph Rimpell.


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