Category: Boxing


Jake LaMotta was not a great champion but one of the toughest, a boxing beast | Kevin Mitchell

The fine details of his brief reign as world middleweight champion are not always absorbed in recollections of his career, mainly because one of the greatest films of all time painted him in classically Shakespearean mode

Jake LaMotta should have been in Las Vegas to watch Gennady Golovkin and Saul “Canelo” Álvarez, two distinguished middleweights pitched together to echo the deeds of the division’s glorious past, a fight reckoned to restore boxing’s faltering image. LaMotta, who knew a lot about the game’s sullied reputation, would have given it a wry smile.

The fight did not quite do its job. It was a terrific rather than a truly great contest and dreadful misjudgment by one of the officials overwhelmingly in favour of Álvarez returned a split draw, drowning out all other post-fight sentiments. So, unfairly but inevitably, Golovkin-Álvarez will be remembered only slightly more fondly than the theatrical crossover fight in the same ring three weeks earlier between Floyd Mayweather and Conor McGregor.

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Jake LaMotta – a life in pictures

Jake LaMotta, widely acknowledged as one of the toughest men to have entered a professional boxing ring, has died aged 95. The former world middleweight champion was best remembered for having fought the great Sugar Ray Robinson on six occasions. He fought a total of 106 fights, 83 professional, with a record of 83Wins, 30 by KO, 19 losses and four draws.

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Jake LaMotta obituary

World middleweight boxing champion who inspired Martin Scorsese’s film Raging Bull and fought Sugar Ray Robinson six times

Jake LaMotta, who has died aged 95, is generally acknowledged as one of the toughest men to have entered a professional boxing ring – a world middleweight champion best remembered for having fought the great Sugar Ray Robinson on six occasions. Brought up in poverty, a teenage hoodlum, married seven times, imprisoned for pimping, a confessed rapist and sometime actor and standup comedian, LaMotta led a life that reads like a film script and was the basis for the greatest boxing movie of all time, Martin Scorsese’s Raging Bull (1980).

Robert De Niro won an Oscar for his portrayal of the violent, paranoid, wife-beating LaMotta, who had nevertheless endeared himself to the American public at a time when boxing was a hugely popular spectator sport, commanding enormous newspaper coverage, with his almost unbelievable feats of bravery within the ring. The film was based on LaMotta’s memoirs, Raging Bull: My Story (1970), co-written with Joseph Carter and Peter Savage, and republished on several occasions.

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How boxing won the lottery but lost the ticket once again

The sport took a step forward with Saturday’s gripping fight between Gennady Golovkin and Canelo Álvarez – and two steps back with more dubious judging

George Foreman once said boxing is the sport to which all other sports aspire, and for 47 electrifying minutes on Saturday night that maxim rang as true as the middleweights Gennady Golovkin and Canelo Álvarez, two of the finest pure fighters of their generation, met in a contest of extreme physical and psychological intensity, holding a sold-out arena and a worldwide audience of millions in their thrall. It was that rarest of unicorns: a main event that managed to exceed the years of hype that preceded it. The sport could have scarcely dreamt of a better advertisement. Until, that is, the decision.

Whenever boxing asks the broader public to lean forward and pay attention, it seems a self-defeating blow is never too far ahead, reminding everyone why they abandoned the sport in the first place.

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Rio Ferdinand comes out fighting after move into boxing raises eyebrows

The former England footballer believes boxing can give him a new focus and has dismissed those who claim the move is a PR stunt

London’s York Hall is an East End institution where champions like Lennox Lewis and Audley Harrison honed their craft. The decor is charmingly worn, paint chipping and curtains fraying, but authenticity was somewhat lacking as Betfair moved in its branding on Tuesday.

Rio Ferdinand, flanked by the bookmaker’s communications head, Barry Orr, insisted his move into the fight game at the age of 38 was a genuine sporting endeavour. Orr said Ferdinand’s health was the company’s primary concern, not a significant boost in brand awareness from having its name attached to one of the country’s most recognisable sportsmen.

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Game changers: Rio Ferdinand and the stars who swapped sports

The ex-Manchester United defender has taken up boxing – following in the footsteps of such sports multi-taskers as Victoria Pendleton, Ian Botham and Michael Jordan

When former footballer Paolo Maldini bowed out of his nascent tennis career after a solitary chastening afternoon on clay, he summed up the difficulties with the elegance of a man more used to taking effortless command of the defences of Italy and AC Milan.

“It was like writing a poem after studying years of maths,” Maldini said after suffering a 6-1, 6-1 doubles defeat at the Aspria Tennis Cup in June.

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Rio Ferdinand announces move into boxing – video

Former Manchester United footballer Rio Ferdinand is to start training to become a professional boxer. He will be trained by former World Boxing Council super-middleweight champion Richie Woodhall, who said he expects Ferdinand to slot into the cruiserweight division, one below heavyweight. The training will be supported by Betfair for its ‘Defender to Contender’ project.

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Rio Ferdinand to announce shock move into professional boxing – reports

• Former Manchester United defender to reveal change of sport on Tuesday
• Ferdinand will look to emulate former footballer Curtis Woodhouse in the ring

Rio Ferdinand will announce on Tuesday that he is to become a professional boxer at 38 in a dramatic change of career two years after his retirement from football.

According to various reports, the switch will be confirmed at a lunchtime press conference in east London. Ferdinand will confirm a bid to follow in the footsteps of other converts such at Curtis Woodhouse, the former Sheffield United player, who became British light-welterweight champion in 2014 before retiring from the sport.

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Gennady Golovkin attacks ‘terrible’ decision after draw with Saul Álvarez – video

Gennady Golovkin criticises the split points draw outcome of his fight with Saul Álvarez, calling the decision “terrible for the sport.” Experienced judge Adalaide Byrd scored the fight 118-110 in Álvarez’s favour, a very one-sided view on a fight which most found more balanced, or even in Golovkin’s favour

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Gennady Golovkin and Canelo Álvarez fight to controversial split draw

  • Rematch looms after Golovkin and Álvarez fight to split draw in Las Vegas
  • Ringside judge Adalaide Byrd found only two rounds to award Golovkin
  • Nicola Adams’ US debut scuppered after opponent fails pre-fight blood test
  • Canelo Álvarez v Gennady Golovkin – in pictures

The two best fighters in the world are still the two best fighters in the world, and there ought not be much argument over the drawn 12-rounder between Gennady Golovkin and Saul ‘Canelo’ Álvarez, although the manner of getting there on the scorecards was bizarre.

The sometimes eccentric Adalaide Byrd gave a palpably closer fight 118-110 to the Mexican, Dave Moretti had it a more sensible 115-113 and Don Trella had enough evidence to justify a 114-114 draw. And that glow of satisfaction at ringside might have been the smiles of the TV executives and casino heavyweights who know they will now do it all over again.

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Gennady Golovkin and Saul Álvarez can help boxing claw back its integrity

Three world middleweight titles are at stake in the long-awaited meeting between the 35-year-old Kazakh and the 27-year-old Mexican, two of the most marketable fighters in boxing

Oscar De La Hoya is not the most impartial party involved in the middleweight super-fight between his compatriot and client, Saul “Canelo” Álvarez, and the unbeaten Gennady Golovkin, but the promoter struck a note of authenticity when he predicted unprecedented suffering for both fighters here on Saturday night.

“I’m going to call this fight eight to nine rounds of hell for both guys,” the six-weight former world champion said. “It’s going to be difficult for both guys.”

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Billy Joe Saunders’s son hits Willie Monroe Jr in the groin at weigh in – video

During the weigh-in for the WBO World Middleweight Title between Billy Joe Saunders and Willie Monroe Jr, Saunders’s son punches Monroe Jr in the groin and aims a kick at his shins before being dragged away by security

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Canelo Álvarez, Gennady Golovkin both make weight ahead of title showdown

Canelo Álvarez and Gennady Golovkin have both made weight ahead of their hotly anticipated middleweight title fight on Saturday night in Las Vegas.

Golovkin was first on the scales on Friday afternoon at the MGM Grand Garden Arena and came in exactly at the division limit of 160lbs. Álvarez, sporting a thin red beard, also tipped the scales at 160lbs before an estimated crowd of 9,000.

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Sports quiz of the week: Dwight, slights, big fights and Champions League nights

Who hammered Celtic? Where did Yorke score? And which boxer is unbeaten?

Frank de Boer was Crystal Palace manager for 77 days. How many days did he last in his previous job at Inter?





Palace are not the only Premier League club to have lost their first four games of the season. Which other side still have no points on the board?



Leicester City

West Ham

Canelo Álvarez and Gennady Golovkin will fight in Las Vegas on Saturday. Which of the two boxers is unbeaten in his professional career?



Anthony Joshua’s next opponent, Kubrat Pulev, has only lost one of his 26 professional fights. Who beat him?

Dereck Chisora

Tyson Fury

Wladmir Klitschko

Anthony Joshua

What age was Pulev when he made his professional debut?





Celtic’s 5-0 defeat to Paris Saint-Germain was their worst at home since 1895. Which team hammered them that day?

Donegal Celtic




In which country will the Giro d’Italia begin next year?





Tomas Rosicky scored for Sparta Prague last Sunday for the first time since signing for the club last summer. Before Sunday, when had he last started a game for the club?

Four months ago

Seven months ago

Eleven months ago

Seventeen years ago

Chris Froome’s victory at the Vuelta a España last weekend means he has now won five Grand Tours. Which cyclist has won a record 11 Grand Tours?

Alberto Contador

Fausto Coppi

Vincenzo Nibali

Eddy Merckx

The White House has suggested that ESPN should sack their presenter Jemele Hill because she called Donald Trump …

“A small-handed scrote”

“Donald Dump”

“A white supremacist”

“A big, brash, boring braggart”

Sergio Agüero scored his 124th goal in the Premier League on Saturday to overtake Dwight Yorke as the competition’s highest scoring non-European. For which of his five Premier League clubs did Yorke score most of those 123 league goals?

Aston Villa

Manchester United

Blackburn Rovers

Birmingham City


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Nicola Adams in jackpot mode as she prepares for Las Vegas debut

Great Britain’s two-times Olympic gold medallist cannot stop smiling as she prepares to take on Alexandra Vlaik of Hungary on the Gennady Golovkin undercard

Professional boxing is not a business that encourages much levity, but Nicola Adams is so unrelentingly content and smilingly happy that it is tempting to wonder if she realises what she has got herself into.

Adams, the double Olympic gold medallist, makes her Las Vegas debut on Saturday night on the undercard of Gennady Golovkin’s showdown with Saul Álvarez, and she is taking the assignment seriously.

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Saul Álvarez and Gennady Golovkin – hard side of the street to Las Vegas glitz | Kevin Mitchell

The Mexican and the Kazakh both had older brothers who helped turn them into ring warriors in the tough environs of Guadalajara and Karaganda. Now they come together to decide who is the best middleweight in the world

On the inside of Saul Álvarez’s left biceps is tattooed a faded message that he embraced a long time ago: “No boxing, no life.” He smiles as he explains: “It’s exactly that: no boxing, no life. Boxing has given me a life. It has made me the man I am today. I owe a lot to boxing and I love it.”

And without it? “Really, I haven’t given that a thought. Maybe another sport.” That was never likely. Álvarez, famously called “Canelo” – Spanish for cinnamon – is the unmistakable red-headed Mexican who loves horse-riding and life in the city where he was born, Guadalajara, who has three brothers who boxed, and the odds on his being anything else but a fighter in a country so immersed in the sport were always infinitesimal.

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Golovkin v Álvarez: the real deal after the Mayweather v McGregor sideshow | Kevin Mitchell

The upcoming fight in Las Vegas between the aggressive Kazakh and the wily Mexican has the look of a bout from boxing’s golden age

It is time for boxing to fix its house. Two weeks after Floyd Mayweather and Conor McGregor did each other a mutual favour in a cross-discipline public spar that delivered them an estimated $400m to share (the Irishman getting a quarter slice), Gennady Golovkin and Saul “Canelo” Álvarez meet in the same ring on Saturday night to decide who is the best middleweight in the world.

Related: Conor McGregor and Floyd Mayweather the only ones enriched by this fight | Kevin Mitchell

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Anthony Joshua feels he must knock out Kubrat Pulev to avoid failure

• WBC and IBF heavyweight champion faces Bulgarian in Cardiff next month
• Joshua has stopped all 19 of his opponents: ‘I like knocking people out’

Anthony Joshua’s words were cordial. The respect for his opponent obvious. But Britain’s WBC and IBF heavyweight champion also wanted to make something clear: if he does not knock out the Bulgarian Kubrat Pulev when they meet in Cardiff next month he will consider his night a failure.

“It is heavyweight boxing,” he said, during a disarmingly matter-of-fact soliloquy about the realities of his trade. “You have to knock someone out. It shows your timing is great, that you are a puncher, that you are a force to be reckoned with and that your aura is intact. Nobody comes to a boxing match to watch a 12-round fight, it gets boring. Unless it’s a brawl.”

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Anthony Joshua to fight Bulgarian Kubrat Pulev in Cardiff in October

• Joshua returns to ring after stopping Wladimir Klitschko in April
• Pulev: ‘When I enter the ring he will have no chance to beat me’

Anthony Joshua has been warned to prepare for a brawl by the Bulgarian Kubrat Pulev, after he was confirmed as the Londoner’s next opponent for his WBA and IBF heavyweight championship title belts.

Joshua, who has not fought since getting off the floor to stop Wladimir Klitschko at Wembley Stadium in April, will be an overwhelming favourite when he faces the 36-year-old Pulev at the Principality Stadium in Cardiff on 28 October.

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Conor McGregor and Floyd Mayweather the only ones enriched by this fight | Kevin Mitchell

There was little new to be learned by either fans or experts after a predictable outcome to this money-spinning encounter in Las Vegas between two proponents of very different disciplinesA bar is, on reflection, the best place to watch a bar fight. Ult…