Stiff Jab Presents: The Fourth Judge Podcast Episode 13

It’s been a wild week for New York sports, but don’t worry, Brad and James are here to elucidate the issues of the day with grace, aplomb, wit, and sensitivity. The Knicks are officially DUNZO. Eli Manning is embroiled in WHITE HOT CONTROVERSY. CC Sabathia doesn’t LOOK THAT SKINNY. What should you think about these developments? BRAD AND JAMES WILL TELL YOU!

In the second half of the podcast the boys review Avey Tare’s new album Enter the Slasher House and Mobb Deep’s triple-CD money grab/”reissue” of The Infamous.

Also — James sings a bunch of Janet Jackson songs. You should check it out.

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Manny Pacquiao Beats Tim Bradley In Rematch

Photo by Chris Farina for Top Rank

by Gautham Nagesh

If there were any doubts about whether Manny Pacquiao is a superior fighter than Tim Bradley Jr., the Filipino welterweight put them to bed on Saturday night in Las Vegas on HBO Pay Per View.

The Pacman overcame a spirited early effort from Bradley to win a convincing decision at the MGM Grand, avenging his controversial loss in their first bout last year. This time there could be no debate: Bradley threw everything he had against Pacquiao in the early rounds, but Pacman took it all and kept coming.

Bradley landed a number of crashing rights early in the fight, but it was Pacquiao’s dynamite left hand that ruled the evening, as it has so many times before. Pacquiao’s speed and effortless power were the difference in the end. Bradley left his sizable heart into the ring, but he simply did not have the talent to match Pacquiao.

Stiff Jab Presents: The Fourth Judge Podcast Episode 12

Knicks’ playoff chances? FUCKED! Phil Jackson's tenure as President of the Knicks? A SMASHING SUCCESS! Stevie Nicks documentary on Netflix? HILARIOUS (for about half an hour)!

As always we cover a metric ton of riveting, hilarious, informative content, but this week’s episode is particularly philosophical. Check it out if you want to live your best life. Check it out if you want to laugh. Check it out if you want to learn how to love again.

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Eight Count: Marvin Hagler Disses MMA, The Story Of Top Dawg Williams

Photo by Gautham Nagesh from the National Portrait Gallery

by Anna John

Behold, a rundown of the stories we’re talking about at Stiff Jab headquarters here in suddenly-balmy Washington, D.C. Ladies and gents, I give you this week’s link roundup:

1) We’re starting off on a serious, alarming note— “Study: MMA Brain Injury Risk Higher Than Boxing”: 

"About one-third of professional mixed martial arts matches end in knockout or technical knockout, indicating a higher incidence of brain trauma than boxing or other martial arts, according to a new study in the American Journal of Sports Medicine." [ABC News]

2) Here’s a nice story out of Brooklyn, and our writer Sarah Deming’s old stomping grounds at Gleason’s Gym:Paul Malignaggi strikes a blow vs. obesity

"I was born and raised in Brooklyn," said Malignaggi, as his pal Verteouris, and Brooklyn borough president Eric Adams listened intently. "I have the ability to give back to my community, help make a difference, and Knockout Obesity is a program I believe in. I know it can make a huge difference in the community. Boxing is an optimum, great way to exercise and with diet and nutrition added to the mix, it’s a winning program." [ESPN New York]

3) Next up— “How HBO lost Adonis Stevenson to Showtime”. A lengthy exploration of yet another boxing-network fustercluck:

"None of this would be an issue if HBO had done its job last year and made certain not to televise an otherwise meaningless doubleheader featuring Stevenson and Sergey Kovalev without first having an agreement in place for them to meet on HBO in their next fight." [Yahoo! Sports]

4) Here’s something different and useful: “The Big, Big List of Boxing on Twitter”. It’s exactly what it sounds like— a massive compilation of boxing-related accounts on the popular social networking service. Tweet tweet. Thanks to author Scott Christ for including us. [Bad Left Hook]

Preview: Sergey Kovalev vs. Cedric Agnew

Photos by Rich Graessle for Main Events

by Raymundo Dioses

Russian super-puncher Sergey ‘Krusher’ Kovalev will face Chicago’s Cedric Agnew in a match-up of unbeaten light heavyweights on HBO Saturday night from Boardwalk Hall in Atlantic City, N.J.

Agnew, (26-0, 13 KOs) is unbeaten, yet considered a soft-touch who was supposed to set ‘Krusher’ for a puncher vs. puncher mega bout with light heavyweight champion Adonis Stevenson this fall on HBO. Stevenson will be defending his title against Andrzej Fonfara in May; Fonfara, (27-2, 15 KOs) has faced better competition than Agnew, but is also considered a walk-through bout so HBO could make the Kovalev-Stevenson fight before the calendars turn.

However, events this week threw a proverbial punch in the best laid plans of men. Stevenson (23-1, 20 KO) aligned himself with shadowy advisor Al Haymon, and the Fonfara fight was shipped to HBO rival Showtime. Most of the industry sees this move as a buzzkill, scuttle-butting a potential knockdown, knockout-fest between two 175-pound lions.

Heather Hardy Brings The Heat To Nydia Feliciano In Brooklyn

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Photos by Sue Jaye Johnson

by Sarah Deming

BROOKLYN, N.Y.—I had planned to hunker down Friday night and pre-toxify for my trip to Amsterdam, but when I heard that junior featherweights Heather “The Heat” Hardy and Nydia “Phenomenal” Feliciano were doing battle at the Aviator, I couldn’t stay home.

Two years ago, I saw Nydia Feliciano spar a woman called Fire in a gym in Inwood. Fire was slick, but she couldn’t get her distance on Feliciano, whose soft body held surprising strength. I still remember the knowing way Feliciano placed her shots, chipping away at Fire’s body like a sculptor who sees something in a stone.

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Feliciano has been pro longer than Heather Hardy has been boxing. Hardy has amassed an 8-0 record and become one of the favorites at promoter Lou Dibella’s Broadway Boxing shows, but nobody had ever accused her of finesse. I was surprised she had taken a fight with such a tough opponent.

On the bus ride to the godforsaken corner of Brooklyn that holds the Aviator Sports and Events Center, I ran into the ubiquitous Diablo, who said he was cornering Feliciano. Diablo is about 4’10” and looks like a Dominican Yosemite Sam. He once tried to have me ejected from a Golden Gloves show for no apparent reason.

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UFC Fight Night 38: Dan Henderson demolishes Shogun Rua in the 3rd

by Dr. Octagon, J.D.

Even though he was grandfathered in with what is hopefully the last Testosterone Replacement Therapy exemption in the history of the sport, the 43-year old Dan Henderson (above) is still a force to be reckoned with. On Saturday night at UFC Fight Night 38 in Brazil, Henderson proved it by stopping Mauricio “Shogun” Rua in the 3rd round of a rematch of one of the better mixed martial arts fights in recent memory.

Unfortunately for Rua, Henderson still has a chin of solid granite and old man strength in his right hand. Shogun hurt Dan badly in both the first and second rounds. Referee Herb Dean could have stopped it in the first round there probably wouldn’t be much protest. Dan looked pretty flat in the first two rounds and his cardio still appeared suspect.

Everything changed in the third round, when Henderson landed a vicious right hand off the break, sending Rua to the mat. Henderson then fired about a dozen hammerfists to his fallen opponent’s head to end the fight. Shogun was holding onto his leg, but he was pretty much out and also had a busted nose.  

Stiff Jab Presents: The Fourth Judge Podcast Episode 11

We hardly talk about the Knicks at all this week so listen to the whole thing. That’s our advice. Topics covered include:

Mac Demarco, The Men, sesame bagels, Billy Joel, “magic mushrooms”, hangovers, Fight Club, The Toadies, Jesus, healthcare reform, Rick Ross, and MORE!

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Stiff Jab Presents: The Fourth Judge Podcast Episode 10

This week the boys celebrate St. Patrick’s Day and their 10th episode by getting just a liiiiiiiiiiiiiittle bit tipsy. Join them as they sing the praises of Phil Jackson, Madlib, and the Dyson Air Blade. Help them figure out if Oscar Pistorius is South Africa’s OJ Simpson, and humor them as they suggest that Cher covering the songs from The Crow soundtrack in the style of Sheryl Crow is a hilarious concept.

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Vyacheslav “Czar” Glazkov Dumps Tomasz Adamek, Isaac Chilemba Wins

Photos by Rich Graessle for Main Events

by Sarah Deming

BETHLEHEM, Pa.—The Sands Casino crowd was pretty drunk by the time their favorite, Tomasz “Goral” Adamek (49-2), got roughed up by Vyacheslav “Czar” Glazkov (16-0). It was the finale of a soulful night of boxing courtesy of Main Events, broadcast live on NBC Sports Net. This was a classic crossroads: Adamek, a 37-year-old Polish former world champ against Czar, a 29-year-old Ukrainian upstart with an Olympic bronze medal.

I had abandoned all pretense of objectivity. The young heavyweights from my gym had been Czar’s sparring partners for this fight, and whenever the quiet, serious young pro walked through our door in his Ukrainian tracksuit, it was like a visit from royalty. I was on the Czar bandwagon, or should I say troika. 

After a slow first round, both men opened up, and Czar’s superior strength was clear. From this point on, there was little hope for Adamek, especially after his right eye began to close. The 4th round was another big one for Czar, who was not only landing the harder shots, he was advancing and controlling center ring. At the end of this round, Adamek looked like he was weeping tears of blood.

Danny Garcia Escapes P.R. with Victory, Deontay Wilder Ousts a False King

Photo by Tom Casino for Showtime

By Craig Dowd

Junior-welterweight champion Danny Garcia will leave Puerto Rico this weekend with family photos, fond memories and an early birthday present from two judges. Thanks to their professional negligence, he gets to fly back to Philadelphia with all of his title belts, just before he turns twenty-six on Thursday.

Garcia escaped the squared circle Saturday night with a majority decision victory over Mauricio Herrera, of California, on Showtime, but not without sullying his reputation first.

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Herrera baffled Garcia with aggression, feints and a probing jab slung from all angles, and finally bloodied the champion’s nose late in the ninth round. Garcia offered little in reprisal for such pesky offensive displays, with his signature left hook dormant most of the night.

The few occasions Garcia managed to reprimand his challenger for deviating from the evening’s script, Herrera responded in kind, with insouciance, shrewd tactics and sharp overhand rights to Garcia’s chin.

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Johny Hendricks Beats Robbie Lawlaer, Wins UFC Welterweight Title

by Dr. Octagon, J.D.

Johny Hendricks threw caution to the wind at UFC 171 on Saturday night and basically stood directly in front of Robbie Lawler for five rounds in their fight for the vacant UFC welterweight title.  

We were rooting for Johny because he got robbed against former champ Georges St. Pierre in his last fight. Against Lawler, Johny won the first two rounds, while Robbie won the third and fourth, busting up Johny’s face really badly.  

The fight was pretty clearly up for grabs in the fifth round. Johny had a little more gas in the tank, as Robbie looked winded. After landing some punches, Hendricks scored a crucial takedown. Robbie looked up at the clock and appeared ticked off, as if he knew he had lost.

The judges all had it 48-47 for Hendricks, which was the correct score. Great fight, congrats to the new champ.

Johny Hendricks Misses Weight On First Attempt

by Dr. Octagon, J.D.

Johny Hendricks (above) missed his contracted weight by 1.5 pounds on his first attempt at UFC 171 in Dallas.

Because his fight against Robbie Lawler is for the vacant UFC welterweight title, Hendricks doesn’t have the one pound wiggle room given to fighters in non-title fights. He’s got to lose it all. He’s got an hour to lose the weight or the fight won’t be for the belt, which would be a shame.  

Update: Hendricks made weight on his second attempt. The belt will in fact be on the line tomorrow night. Must have been a rough cut for him. People betting on Lawler must be feeling better about their underdog pick.  

Preview: Danny Garcia, Adamek vs Glazkov, Saturday Night Boxing In NoVa

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Danny Garcia photos by Tom Casino for Showtime

by Gautham Nagesh

Friday night is a little light this week, but Saturday night will be packed with boxing, on TV and live in Northern Virginia.

The big show will come to you on Showtime from Bayamon, Puerto Rico, where junior welterweight champion Danny Garcia will stay busy against sturdy veteran Maurcio Herrera. A solid undercard from Golden Boy includes unbeaten Alabama heavyweight Deontay Wilder in a step up against Malik Scott on the main telecast, and Juan Manuel Lopez vs. Daniel Ponce de Leon on Showtime Extreme.

Back on the East Coast, Polish heavyweight Tomasz Adamek will headline a Main Events show on NBC Sports Net from Sands Resort in Bethlehem, Pa. against Vyacheslav “Czar” Glazkov. The winner will be well-positioned for a shot at heavyweight champ Wladimir Klitschko, unless the Wilder-Scott winner gets there first. Isaac Chilemba vs. Denis Grachev at light heavyweight highlights the undercard.

Meanwhile, closed to home in Springfield, Va., the ABC Sports Complex will host a card featuring middleweights Brandon Quarles (below), Antoine “Action” Douglas, and super middleweight Jerry “2 Tickets 2 Paradise” Odom.

Full previews and predictions after the jump:

Eight Count: Canelo-Angulo, Justin Bieber & Floyd Mayweather Fever

Photo by Al Bello for Getty Images

by Anna John

Friday means one thing here at Stiff Jab’s cluttered headquarters in Chocolate city— Friday Night Fights.

Okay, it means two things, and the second one is our weekly link roundup, The Eight Count. Here’s what we’re reading and talking about, this week:

1) Last week, only one boxer showed up to the Canelo-Angulo bout. Like many of us who watched that piss poor performance from the Mexican-looking Mexican, Floyd Mayweather the Elder is skeptical about Angulo’s technique:

“It didn’t seem like he [Angulo] was throwing punches back to try and hurt Canelo…It just looked like he was taking punches to me. It just seemed to me like he wasn’t trying to hit Canelo back hard at all. He wasn’t coming in strong; he was taking punishment.” [Boxing News 24]

2) Speaking of Mayweathers, Floyd the Younger still has quite a high opinion regarding that Canadian export most of us love to loathe.

"Actually, Justin Bieber texted me a video of him boxing before, sparring” Mayweather said about the first time he learned the singer has a little bit of boxing skills, ” And he can box a little bit. I was surprised he can box a little bit. He has a fitness trainer, so he’s getting a good shape now.” [International Business Times]

3) Floyd Mayweather’s sonning of Amir Khan continues, with this news about undercard possibilities for Mayweather-Maidana. While Khan wasn’t good enough for Floyd, Money Mayweather thinks he’s a better fit for bitchy little brother Adrien Broner. You know, the boxer who got humped in the ring by Maidana before being carried out by a bodyguard after his last fight: