In Boxing News: Is Taylor-Wright Really Off?

Winky Wright‘s proposed middleweight title fight against Jermain Taylor is off, and according to promoter Lou DiBella, most likely for good. Monday afternoon, St. Petersburg’s Wright rejected DiBella’s offer of $3-million to meet Taylor, the WBC/WBA/WBO champion, this spring on HBO. Lou DiBella said: Winky is not worth 50-50; there’s no promoter that would disagree. Winky is a stinker who can’t sell a ticket and except for (serious) boxing fans, no one gives a rat’s a– about him. Somebody should tell Lou that if that is indeed the case, then it is doubtful that there is anyone outwith the serious boxing fans who give a fill-in-the-blank about Jermain Taylor either.

O’Neil Bell credited his superior fitness for his victory over Jean-Marc Mormeck in their cruiserweight unification tilt on Saturday night: It was a war of attrition and who was in better shape. He (Mormeck) started folding in the fifth or sixth rounds. I kept the pressure on. The man is supposed to be a bull and he was backing against the ropes. It certainly did appear that Bell was in excellent shape and that Mormeck’s relative inactivity over the last year came back to haunt him, as his mouth was open beginning in the early rounds.

Dave Moretti and Paul Smith, two of the three judges in the first Manny Pacquiao-Erik Morales encounter, have been reappointed to the rematch between Morales and Pacquiao. The Nevada State Athletic Commission on Monday also appointed Kenny Bayless to referee the bout.

One of the toughest fights of Scott Harrison‘s professional career will be officially announced today when the undefeated Joan Guzmán of the Dominican Republic is named as the challenger for Harrison’s World Boxing Organisation version of the world featherweight title in Glasgow on March 25. The jury is still out on Harrison. His name has come up in the past as a possible opponent for Mexican kingpins Juan Manuel Marquez and Marco Antonio Barrera, but the rugged Scotsman has struggled at times with lesser fighters. Joan Guzman should provide a good measuring stick for guaging where Harrison really fits in. The Glasgow Heralds says Harrison’s insistence that he face Guzman – against the advice of his promoter, Frank Maloney – confirms Harrison’s status as a pugilistic throwback in an era of political puppeteering.

Bernard Fernandez reports that Emanuel Steward has raised $60,000 for his Save Kronk project, but a compromise of sorts has been reached. Although the Kronk is one of nine city-owned rec centers that closed on Jan. 2, the famous basement gym is still operational. We can always open another gym, but there’s something special about the original. When you think of Detroit, it’s hard not to think of Kronk, said Steward.

In heavyweight news, Danny Williams and Matt Skelton – who are set to meet – are both looking towards a crack at Nicolay Valuev. Williams, for one, thinks the Beast from the East is there to be taken: I’d say he is the worst of the current champions and I would agree that he’s more of a freak than anything else. From what I’ve seen of him, he does not punch as hard as you would expect for such a big man.

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