In Boxing News: Hopkins-Jones Jr. Can’t Agree Shocker

Knock me over with a feather, Bernard Hopkins‘ planned March 11 farewell fight against Roy Jones Jr. appears to be off. Neither the TV money offered by HBO for the planned boxing pay-per-view event, nor the amounts sites were offering to host the fight – a venue was never chosen – met with the fighters’ expectations, according to boxing insiders. Richard Schaefer, CEO of Golden Boy Promotions, which promotes Hopkins, said: In the end of the day, it didn’t happen. Hopkins, however, still has one date left on his HBO contract and the Jones Jr. fight could yet still happen. Regardless, it’s hard to care either way about a hollow exercise designed to pad the retirement nest egg of two fighters who should have met 5 years ago when it would have had actual significance for the sport. The same column adds that Roy Jones last week was relieved of his duties as a boxing analyst with HBO.

Erik Morales says Manny Pacquiao better bring his A-game on Jan. 21st if he hopes to have any chance of winning (reference to the brand of gloves completely unintentional): let’s put it up in the ring and see if their fighter (Pacquiao) is good enough to execute what they say they’re going to do to me … That’s going to be me. And everyone in the world knows I don’t back away from a fight. No he doesn’t … which is why the 21st can’t come quick enough for fight fans.

And suddenly everybody wants a piece of Pacquiao. Marco Antonio Barrera has expressed his intention to take on Pacquiao after his match Jesus Chavez fell through.

Robert Cassidy Jr. says yesterday was a day to savor for boxing’s smallest giants. Junior flyweight rivals Michael Carbajal and Humberto “Chiquita” Gonzalez will lead the Class of 2006 into the International Boxing Hall of Fame in Canastota. Hank Kaplan, a contributor to was also inducted as an observer. The remainder of the Class of 2006 includes: former lightweight champion Edwin Rosario (deceased) in the modern category; welterweight and middleweight champion Lou Broulliard, light heavyweight champion Jimmy Slattery and middleweight champion Teddy Yarosz from the old-timers category; 19th-century English lightweight champion Jem Carney, in the pioneer category; and joining Kaplan as an observer was publisher Stanley Weston. Other inductees are English promoter/manager Jarvis Astaire, trainer Whitey Bimstein and Italian promoter Rodolfo Sabbatini. The induction ceremony is June 11th.

ESPN’s Dan Rafael has Chris Byrd ranked number 1 in the heavyweight division in his January divisional rankings.

According to a Top Rank press release, Miguel Cotto will defend his WBO junior welterweight title against Gianluca Branco of Italy on a Top Rank championship fight card in San Juan, Puerto Rico, on March 4, 2006. Heavyweight David Tua continues his comeback when he faces Javier Mora on February 25 at the Hard Rock Arena in Florida. Howard Eastman will face Miami based Colombian Edison Miranda in a final eliminator this spring for the right to challenge IBF champion Arthur Abraham.

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