The one & only Roberto Duran on the best boxers he faced during his illustrious and distinguished career.
Ken Buchanan: Buchanan was one of the great lightweights when it came to tactics and skill. His intelligence made him very difficult to beat even though he wasn’t a very strong opponent. Sugar Ray Leonard was faster and stronger but Buchanan had tremendous skills.
Buchanan: He was tall, boxed well and his lateral movement was extremely good. Buchanan’s jab was difficult to deal with because he threw it on the move.
Buchanan: He was hard to hit cleanly. I was very young, lacked experience, and Buchanan had been world champion for a long time. A lot of people will expect me to say Wilfred Benitez or Leonard when it comes to defense but I wasn’t prepared properly for Benitez or the Leonard rematch. Davey Moore, who I beat easily, knocked Benitez out so there’s no comparison there. I was coming into my prime against Buchanan and he made me miss often.
Marvelous Marvin Hagler: I hit Hagler with a lot of punches and he just kept coming. I didn’t find him as skillful as some of the opponents I faced but he was the toughest.
Esteban De Jesus: De Jesus was the first opponent to knock me down and he had me down again in the second fight. When I lost to Thomas Hearns I was drained from losing weight too quickly, and that had a bad effect on me. Hearns got me with a great punch but I could have performed far better in a rematch. Marvin Hagler, who is a good friend of mine, told Hearns the only reason he knocked me out is because I wasn’t at my best.
Sugar Ray Leonard: He was the fastest fighter I ever fought but in the first fight I saw everything that was coming at me.
Buchanan: At lightweight the opponents were much swifter on their feet and, back then, we were boxing in 15-round fights. Buchanan always kept on the move but I caught up with him eventually. That victory means a lot to me.
Leonard: It’s hard to give you one name but Leonard stands out because he made adjustments during fights.
Hagler: It was an extremely close fight but he got me tired late. Even though I built myself up to middleweight, Hagler was much bigger and used his strength on the inside. After making weight, a fighter rehydrates and there was a big difference there. Still, even when I was tired, Hagler couldn’t get me down. There was no way I was going to get the decision but some fans and reporters thought I’d done enough. Hagler had big American fights pending with Leonard and Hearns so there was a lot of money at stake.
Leonard: I have to say Sugar Ray Leonard because look at what he did in his career after he lost to me. It takes a lot to come back from defeat and Leonard did it.
"After a long time out of the ring and after giving it a lot of thinking since my last fight, I’ve decided to hang up the gloves for good,” he wrote. “Probably my decision would not surprise much as I had given hints of it in the last few months. But at this time I am making it official."
“I had a tough career and I fulfilled many of my dreams,” he said. “I am a very happy man with my family and friends by my side these days. Today I do not feel motivated enough, do not have the fire inside me to intend to climb those mountains again. That is why I announce my retirement.
Billy Joe Saunders is off the Canelo Alvarez Sept. 17 undercard on HBO PPV after turning down Gabriel Rosado as an opponent, though a match between Saunders and Canelo is still a possibility for December, Eric Gomez, VP of Golden Boy told RingTV.com on Thursday.
Saunders-Rosado was penciled in as the co-feature to Alvarez’s junior middleweight title fight with Liam Smith. But Saunders’ refusal to face Rosado, as well as other opponents made it impossible to complete a deal, Gomez said. Now Golden Boy is trying to figure out which fight will serve as the co-feature after heavyweight Luis Ortiz’s proposed bout with Alexander Ustinov also fell apart in negotiations earlier this month.
Saunders, who holds a middleweight title and hasn’t fought since last December, reportedly turned down the fight because he didn’t think Rosado (23-9, 13 knockouts) was capable enough with nine losses, though his defeats have come against blue-chip talent. Philly’s Rosado blasted Saunders on social media for bypassing such an opportunity. “Excuses in y he turned down the fight r pathetic,” Rosado tweeted on Thursday. “HBO payperview. It gets no bigger then that #Coward”.
Bob Arum is in the process of trying to find a television partner to distribute Manny Pacquiao’s return bout against Jessie Vargas on Nov. 5 and listed ESPN, Turner Broadcasting and even Showtime as potential carriers after HBO passed on the fight, he told RingTV.com on Tuesday.
“It’s going to be distributed on Dish (Network), Direct TV, etc., etc., and now we’re working on a distribution partner to fill the role of HBO,” Arum said in a phone interview. “Definitely it’s not going to be HBO. HBO had a contract and decided to pass because it was two weeks in front of their Ward-Kovalev fight.”
Sergey Kovalev’s light heavyweight championship with Andre Ward is schedule for Nov. 19 in Las Vegas on HBO PPV. Pacquiao’s bout with Vargas is on Nov. 5 and will also appear on the pay-per-view platform. “If they hadn’t passed on the right, we wouldn’t have had any option,” said Arum of having the Nov. 5 fight on HBO PPV. “They had a contract.” HBO has now given up its contractual right to any of his future fights, Arum said, including a possible lucrative rematch with Floyd Mayweather Jr. HBO Sports, which declined comment, has a multi-fight deal with Pacquiao; a source said it’s not clear if the contact becomes void if Pacquiao leaves for one fight.
Arum hasn’t reached out to Showtime yet about carrying Pacquiao-Vargas, he said. Showtime told RingTV.com on Monday it’s open to carrying Pacquiao’s next fight but no discussions have taken place yet with Showtime boxing chief Stephen Espinoza. “I haven’t spoken to them,” Arum said. “But there would be no impediment to that.”
Arum is currently vacationing in Aspen. “When I get back next week, Stephen will be one of the guys I’m calling,” he said. The other options to carry the fight are Turner and ESPN, he said.