DUSSELDORF - Iconic boxing statesman Emanuel Steward says this regardingWladimir Klitschko's engagement with Jean Marc Mormeck.
"Of all the fights I've been involved with in my life, I think this is the most unappreciated."
"It's a no win situation, because either Wladimir should have knocked him out anyway or if it goes over two rounds it's a disgrace.If I was setting a number, I'd have Mormeck about an 8-1 underdog but there's a lot of things that could go wrong like a lucky punch. Mormeck can still punch, and being a former champion he has themental makeup of a winner, and a lot of national pride. I didn't see anyone particularbest weapon but I think it will probably be his left hook since he idolizes and emulates Mike Tyson."
"I expect Mormeck to come out with a very pressured fight which is going to be a little problem for Wladimir because he's a thinker, a perfectionist. That means he's going to spend time trying to analyze Mormeck when he comes in with his head down low, which is something Wladimir has not had to experience since I've been with him. That means at least three rounds to systematically break him down. It doesn't seem like Wladimir'sgoing to come out andget him with one-two punchesearly."
But could Klitschko if he really tried his hardest?
"If this was any other fighter most likely I would say go for the quick knockout but just based on the style I don't think it would be good. A guy like Mormeck is going to be a high energy fighter early, and if you go in with a high energy style, you could get caught. Anything can happen in an exchange. You have to fight a patient fight like I had Lennox Lewis do against Tyson."
"If you go toe to toe you give him a 50-50 chance. If you fight patient, the odds are more like 50-1. Which means that most likely, he (Wlad) will not score an early knockout. And which also means he'll be criticized."
So, for our wagering friends,there's your tip.
Steward is one of the most knowledgeable people I've met in or out of boxing, but this will be a rare time I disagree.
I think Klitschko, who weighed in ataround 246,has a lot to gain against Mormeck, 2171/2,and I think he should try andget Mormeck out of there in the first round.
The first minute.
In a world of tweetybirdtrending, somenotoriety lasts closer to fifteen seconds than the previous fifteen minute measure.Klitschko's consistency, like his brother's, has steadily proved a reliable commodity in both class and culture.Sure the global consciousnessis full ofjerks, phoneys, and hollow self-caricatures oflow or no class reality lifestyles.
That's the point. Anyone with a functioningconsciousness themselvesshould perceive by now that the Klitschkos are just about anything but low class. Asone of the top sibling acts in sportshistory, they have upheld anadmirable standard of behavior, charityand social involvement. I hopeK2's hard sell in the States saysmore about the USA's knockout cravingthan ourcharacter preferences.
More and more, begrudgingly or not,the Kbros are being accepted as the champions they are. There are still critics who demand dramatic stoppages, but that isn't necessary to achieve either greatness or success, longevity, or greatness.
I demand a dramatic stoppage.
That's because I believe the Klitschko reign should be appreciated more, and if Klitschko clobbers Mormeck, it could bea very fan friendly milestone in further public acceptance. It could signal a US breakthrough.
Klitschko joked with the crowd at a public workout about his perceived "glass chin", but it shows he's well aware of the caricature.
Mormeck is capable of exhibiting enough conking class to give the patiently punching Klitschko no choice about getting the challengeraway, as in KO or be KO'd.
Mormeck, with the apparent sturdiness of a local bridgeand the deltoids of an Asgaardianhero from old Thor comics, has beenno easy man to stop. He dropped David Haye, no easy featin aringora press conference, before falling in 2007.The 36-4 (22)Mormeck was also stopped by O'Neil Bell in '06but came back to win a rematch. Mormeck has been less than impressive recently when he has competed at all, but he is still no French small fry.
"Klitschko looks very good, but I had a very good training myself," Mormeck said to me throughlimited French translation. "Why should I be concerned? The postponementmade no problems for me.I am very relaxed,I don't have anything to worry about. All I need to do is concentrate on the fight. I like Klitschkos spirit as a champion. They have treated me well here, and when they came to Paris we treated them well. We both have good teams. There is no reason to act foolishly.
"For me, this is going to be a fight I can win. I said I will do it, and I will."
When I asked Mormeck what he'd do if provoked a la Chisora, the blaze in his eyes confirmed he did not come to Dusseldorf to roll over.
"I had better not say to you what would happen, because this is supposed to be about proper behavior," mused Mormeck. His relaxed state may come harshlycloser to dreamland against Klitschko, but for his sake and the fans' I hope he doesn't go quietly.
The public workout, at a multi-levelMercedes Benz dealership that looked more like a hotel complex, proved that in Germany, Klitschko is popular with a wide rangeof fans. Almost a thousand well-wishers came for thedemonstration/advertisment. Klitschko acted as if Mormeck was just another face in the crowd as the muscular challenger went through a very limited exhibition of basic moves with the pads. As the camera flashes reflected in his eyes, it looked likeMormeck came tohold up his end of promotional participation and not much more.
Klitschko looked more interested in the MC's conversations with fight ticket raffle winners than he did in Mormeck's casual combinations. Wlad established eye contact, as usual, with as many people as he could and gave a sincere, well received narration to the crowd about recent events and the Mormeck bout.
Somewhere in the gleaming,upward spiraling car ramps wherefans and salesmen perched together tightly, a child started crying with resounding echo. There was absolutely no truth to the statement that it was Haye with a sore toe, hiding from German investigators.
Mormeck appeared very relaxed going into the final hours before thefight, and while he studied Klitschko's ring movements he exhibited no concern beyond professional contemplation. There was friendly interaction between many opposing team members and no negative vibes whatsoever. Class on both sides.
In Munich, there was a tangible, almost obviousweirdness in the airindicatingChisora would go offsometime, somewhere, not longafter the fight.
Next to the Rhine, the vibe was thatMormeck showed up toperform at his optimal levelboth personally and professionally.
How many rounds, andat what type exchange rate that translates to still seems way out of Mormeck's hands. I think the fight will resemble Klitschko's rematch with Samuel Peter, depending on how much the willingMormeck can absorb.
Saturday night is an opportunityfor the very worthyWladimir Klitschko to shine. A big blowout would be the best possible promotionalprelude for another K2 visit to America.
There are numerous endorsements featuring the Klitschkos throughout Germany. It was fun watching Stewardusing amini-multi-device to take pictures of a life sized Klitschko storefront cutout. There is no way either of those astute businessmen doesn't appreciate the market value of a big time splattering.
Steward will not get emotional unless something wild happens. That may not hold true for Klitschko.
Watch for the Klitschko uppercut.
It could mean one class act is over, with another coming soon.