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THE MOST AVOIDED LIST: Too Dangerous To Fight in 2014

BY David A. Avila ON January 04, 2014
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fighters cbea2Success can be based on who fights who and who avoids who.

It’s not that professional boxers fear other professional boxers. But they all fear losing and that’s when it’s best to recognize those fighters that are too dangerous.

The too dangerous fighters are no necessarily the big punchers. They come in all shapes and sizes and styles. They are the boxers that can beat you with quickness, awkwardness, or possess granite chins, long arms, tallness, shortness or just plain power.

In 2013 two boxers graduated from the Too Dangerous crew to main event status. One was Ruslan Provodnikov, the Russian destroyer who had been avoided for several years until nearly defeating Tim Bradley and beating Mike Alvarado. The other graduate was Carlos Molina, the prince of awkwardness who eked out a win over Ishe Smith to win the junior middleweight world title.

Here’s a list of fighters that may surprise you. Not all are unknowns but they are under-noticed. This is my list of prizefighters who could topple any top 10 fighter, including world champions. For one reason or another they are simply too dangerous to face.

Sergio Mora (25-3-2, 8 Kos) – Middleweight from East L.A recently signed with Lou DiBella, who also has Sergio Martinez. It’s a fight that can be made and don’t be too hasty to put money on the Argentine world champion. Martinez has never fought anyone quite as clever, fast or skillful as Mora.

Keith Thurman (22-0, 20 Kos) – Welterweight from Florida may be on everybody’s radar already, but for those with world title belts looking to expand their pocketbooks, they may want to avoid this guy. Even junior middleweights should avoid him. He’s just starting out so he’s not a big draw yet. One big knockout win over a big name fighter will do the trick.

Anthony Mundine (45-5, 27 Kos) – Middleweight from Australia recently defeated Sugar Shane Mosley by stoppage. It put the long-time Aussie champion on the American radar and he hopes a fight with Floyd Mayweather, Saul Alvarez or Gennady Golovkin can be made. He’s very unorthodox.

Richar Abril (18-3-1, 8 Kos) – Lightweight from Miami has a very John Ruiz-ish type style, meaning he likes to hit and hold a lot. Anyone who faces this guy better know what to do with a constrictor because arm burns are par for the course.

Randall Bailey (44-8, 37 Kos) – Welterweight power-hitter from Miami can lull opponents to sleep like a swaying cobra. But if you blink or get bored he will relieve you of your senses with one punch. Just ask Mike Jones or any of the other 36 fellows he stopped.

Mike Perez (20-0, 12 Kos) – Heavyweight from Cuba trains in Big Bear Lake and though he’s not a very big guy, he can crack. Perez trained in Ireland for awhile but now calls California his new-found home. He has lots of heavyweights to practice with in the mountains.

Andy Ruiz (21-0, 15 Kos) – Heavyweight from Mexico may beat Chris Arreola to the heavyweight world title. Don’t be fooled by his soft-looking body and cherubic face. Those non-athletic-looking arms have speed and power. He has fast hands and can take a shot.

Franklin Lawrence (19-2-2, 14 Kos) – Heavyweight from Indianapolis cracks big time power shots. He retired Lance Whitaker when they fought in Riverside a few years ago. Lawrence can change the outcome of a fight with one punch. He’s kind of like an Ernie Shavers.

James Toney (76-9-3, 46 Kos) – Heavyweight is ranked 103 in the world. A gambler could make a lot of money because I doubt 103 heavyweights could beat him. If Toney is as bad as the rankings have him why aren’t guys lining up to fight him? He’s probably the most dangerous of all fighters on this list.

Maxim Vlasov (28-1, 14 Kos) – Super middleweight is a fighter that nobody knows except for his glossy record. He defeated a good fighter in Mark Suarez, though that fighter had been out of the ring for nearly six years. Vlasov can fight.

Chris Pearson (10-0, 9 Kos) – Junior middleweight from Ohio reminds me of Andre Ward when he first turned professional. Pearson is a fearsome talent with all of the tools necessary to become a world champion. The speedy southpaw could - in my opinion - defeat a number of world champions right now.

Roberto Garcia (33-3, 22 Kos) – Junior middleweight from southern Texas has big time power and a big time chin. If you make a mistake he will take your heart away. But he has slow feet and doesn’t punch a lot. When he does punch…watch out.

Mauricio Herrera (20-3, 7 Kos) – Junior welterweight from Riverside, California is one of two to defeat Ruslan Provodnikov. Yes, that Provodnikov. He recently lost to Karim Mayfield but the judges seemed off on that fight. I’d like to see Mayfield fight Provodnikov and see if he could survive. Herrera is a master boxer and if taken lightly he can defeat almost anyone.

Jose Felix Jr. (26-0-1, 21 Kos) – Junior lightweight from Los Mochis has serious power in both hands. North of the border he’s not known by many but he can really fight. In his recent appearance in California he obliterated his opponent before anyone could determine what he does in the ring.

Michael Farenas (37-4-4, 29 Kos) – Junior lightweight from Philippines has a lot of fights and knows how to use that experience. He has one heck of a chin and takes a good shot to the body too. This guy is one dangerous fighter.

Scott Quigg (27-0-2, 20 Kos) – Junior featherweight from Lancashire, England has had few problems defeating everyone he faces in his native land. It’s time to see if he can defeat someone from Latin America or America. Who knows? He could be the next Naseem Hamed.

Matt Villanueva (11-0-1, 9 Kos) – Junior bantamweight from Burbank, California has been fighting all over the place. He’s in a rush to show what he can do and making sure he wins by way of the knockout. He is tall for his weight class and cracks power.

These are guys I pick to defeat a champion or two in 2014.

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Comment on this article

Glass Joe says:

Why aren't guys lining up to fight Lights Out? There's absolutely nothing to be gained. There would likely be not much interest (read: money) in a Toney fight. Beating him would be fairly meaningless, as many would pass it off as winning against what would appear to be an old fat guy. Yet the potential to lose to him remains high - and a loss would appear bad, as many would pass it off as losing to what would appear to be a guy way past him prime.

Glass Joe says:

…and I'll add one more to the list: Sergey Kovalev. Sure, there's be money for anyone to fight Kovalev, but he's very, very dangerous. Did I detect a bit of a dodged answer by Adonis Stevenson (after the Tony Bellew fight) when asked if Kovalev was next?

the Roast says:

Glass Joe? From Punch Out? Whats up Joe? I must have knocked you out 100 times back in the day. Ahh the good old days. Just me and my bong kickin back playin some video games. Do you ever talk to Piston Honda? Welcome to TSS. Here's hoping Sergio Mora continues to be avoided. James Toney too. Not interested.

The_King_AJ says:

Good mentions, Abril and Farenas. Randall Bailey is the type of gatekeeper you just can't afford to lose to. Devastating punching power, a huge risk for up and coming, inexperienced fighters to face. Who else would want to fight the guy? I wonder where Mike Jones is, it's been well over a year since he's last fought, he owes himself more than giving up.

The_King_AJ says:

P.S I don't really rate Scott Quigg.

Radam G says:

The most exposed up fighters in 2014 -- if they step up -- will be Gary Russell and Deontay Wilder. The most beat up fighters will Juan Manuel "Hulkquez" (full of that syet) Marquez, Tim "The Big Foot Cali Cranium Crusher" Bradley, Brandon "Bam Bam" (got dat syet in him) Rios and J' Love of Mayweather's stable. Holla!

Spinach Chin says:

"Fast" Fres Oquendo should be near the top of that list. If Francesca Piniata (sic) can get a shot at Wlad, Oquendo's is long overdue.

Spinach Chin says:

@ RG - LOL every time you write "Hulkquez"...aw man that's funny.

Grimm says:

Glass Joe? From Punch Out? Whats up Joe? I must have knocked you out 100 times back in the day. Ahh the good old days. Just me and my bong kickin back playin some video games. Do you ever talk to Piston Honda? Welcome to TSS. Here's hoping Sergio Mora continues to be avoided. James Toney too. Not interested.


Piston Honda, hehe - now that's a legend, still dangerous for anyone to fight in 2014. Can't really remember, but he could've been the guy I never could get by. Bald little fella, wasn't he?

Glass Joe says:

Glass Joe? From Punch Out? Whats up Joe? I must have knocked you out 100 times back in the day. Ahh the good old days. Just me and my bong kickin back playin some video games. Do you ever talk to Piston Honda? Welcome to TSS. Here's hoping Sergio Mora continues to be avoided. James Toney too. Not interested.


Oh yeah, I talk to Piston all the time. Just saw Don Flamenco the other day...

amayseng says:

Glass Joe? From Punch Out? Whats up Joe? I must have knocked you out 100 times back in the day. Ahh the good old days. Just me and my bong kickin back playin some video games. Do you ever talk to Piston Honda? Welcome to TSS. Here's hoping Sergio Mora continues to be avoided. James Toney too. Not interested.


ha.. I loved that game, I can't believe I didn't wear it out. Double dribble, another classic of the SNES...

Agreed with Sergio Mora, that guy is a buzz kill, I wouldn't put him anywhere near a TV camera for a fight.

SouthPawFlo says:

Randall Bailey needs to be Avoided, he hits like a Mule taking Power Pellets, Sergio Mora is a problem, Lights Out Toney would give guys a lot of problems but he would be a waste of a risk because he doesn't bring fans to the seats anymore...

Keith Thurman is gonna be a tough out in the Welterweight division, definitely don't see guys calling him out......

Shoulder Roll Defense says:

The most exposed up fighters in 2014 -- if they step up -- will be Gary Russell and Deontay Wilder. The most beat up fighters will Juan Manuel "Hulkquez" (full of that syet) Marquez, Tim "The Big Foot Cali Cranium Crusher" Bradley, Brandon "Bam Bam" (got dat syet in him) Rios and J' Love of Mayweather's stable. Holla!


Come on RG, don't start off the new year hating lol. Gary Russell has been moved slow, but there is no denying the kid's skill and talent. His only weakness is his brittel hands. On another note, Deontay Wilder has the potential to be a heavyweight champion in today's weak heavyweight division. The late Emanuel Stewart saw the same type of potential in Wilder that I see. J' Leon Love and Rios are B level fighters, but there is no mistaking Timothy Bradley's pedigree. He is a well rounded fighter that isn't great at any facet of the sweet science, but rather good in all areas except the power punching category. He is one of the fiercest competitors in the fight game with a heart the size of Texas. If he fights Manny again, I predict that he will win hands down via decision this time around. Happy New Year, holla!

brownsugar says:

Add Rance Barthelemy's name to the list.... after his before and after the bell distruction of Mendez.

The Good Doctor says:

Randall Bailey needs to be Avoided, he hits like a Mule taking Power Pellets, Sergio Mora is a problem, Lights Out Toney would give guys a lot of problems but he would be a waste of a risk because he doesn't bring fans to the seats anymore...

Keith Thurman is gonna be a tough out in the Welterweight division, definitely don't see guys calling him out......


I am with you on Randall Bailey. That dude landed two punches against Mike Jones and won the fight.

When I look at this list, with the exception of Thurman, I kind of feel like this is more of a "what do I gain from fighting this guy list". None of these guys carry a real name outside of the circle of true boxing fans. I think quite a few of these guys are beatable but if I am on the come and I need I nice check, I am not fighting these guys not because of fear, but because of rep and moolah.

the Roast says:

Piston Honda, hehe - now that's a legend, still dangerous for anyone to fight in 2014. Can't really remember, but he could've been the guy I never could get by. Bald little fella, wasn't he?


I can't remember either. It was along time ago and I did mention my sidekick the bong. Not good for the memory short or long term.

the Roast says:

Oh yeah, I talk to Piston all the time. Just saw Don Flamenco the other day...


Don Flemenco, totally forgot about that guy.

Radam G says:

Hehehe! SRD, you are starting the G year off by being a jokester. Gary Russell will get KAYOED by even a mild-warm body.

'Bama Wilder is in the chump protection program.

He even wuzzied out of fighting warm-body Dereck Chisora in 2013 by having a nervous breakdown and beating the arse of a Sin City ho. YUP! The 'Bama broke her off some phat trim to stay outta da slamma!' And his arse has been on sick leave gettin' therapy for using a ho for a punching bag because of bad nerves about moving up to be chin checked by a body with a bit of heat. Hahaha! Nothing is as it appears in da hurt bitnezz [sic].

Wow! Wow! Double WOW! Hehehehehehe! I knew IT! You are a subliminal PacMan super hater.

Tim "Big Foot (The Cali Cranium Crusher)" Bradley's gift-and-lift train rides end in 2014. He gets KAYOED in his next fight -- Da Manny or not. Unless TB dances again with full-of-da-syet zombie-fighting Hulkquez, he will have a very losing year. There are 10 light welters and welters that would kicked his arse. He's been the luckiest-used man in boxing. The gig is up. Holla!

The_King_AJ says:

Come on RG, don't start off the new year hating lol. Gary Russell has been moved slow, but there is no denying the kid's skill and talent. His only weakness is his brittel hands


Well he undoubtedly has the skill and talent, however he has glass balls and so you'd question them in the face of adversity. He has to face the winner of Lomachenko-Salido (a Lomachenko victory). When your speed and athleticism can be dealt with, the glass heart will shatter faster.

Radam G says:

Double ditto, The_King_AJ! G Russell has courage issues, along with his many flaws -- not hidden to those with deep, deep savvy of da game. Holla!

The Good Doctor says:

Radam, I am curious. What flaws do you see in Russell? I can't see anything good nor bad with the exception of hand speed because the dude has only fought cadavers in his career.

The Shadow says:

I once saw Russell fight a heavy bag on wheels. They taped a face on it and gave it a 10-count when it fell over. True story. *Barney Stinson voice*

The Shadow says:

Seriously, I have no idea why he hasn't fought anyone with a pulse yet. He said something about them having a plan. Wonder what that plan is. Padding the record until he gets to 60-0?

They're gonna run out of scrubs. They're going to have to rename/recycle some of them LOL.

Radam G says:

I'll hit you on that tomorrow, TGD. I gotta a plane to catch. Holla!

Radam G says:

He flaunts punches, instead of firing or shooting. He fights tight, instead of loosey-goosey. He doesn't turn his punches over, because in his own word, his pops wants him to throw side-fisted ones. How stupid! He crosses his feet. And I can find some more jive, TGD, if you want me to. Holla!

Shoulder Roll Defense says:

He flaunts punches, instead of firing or shooting. He fights tight, instead of loosey-goosey. He doesn't turn his punches over, because in his own word, his pops wants him to throw side-fisted ones. How stupid! He crosses his feet. And I can find some more jive, TGD, if you want me to. Holla!


Are we talking about the same Gary Russell jr.? I don't think so because the Russell jr. that I'm talking about is not only athletic, but also very skilled. He has superb hand speed, good footwork, and respectable power. I think he gives MOST people in his weight class fits. I think he would be too much for Mikey Garcia, but thats just my opinion. The kid has speed and skills, plus he is a southpaw. That is a formidable combination.

Radam G says:

It's the same Gary Russell Jr.

Everything about him is an illusion. The cat wuzzied outta of fighting in the 2008 O-Games by passing da double out because of bad nerves and a superbad diet. He ate himself outta fighting because of fright -- plain and simple. And everybodee and dey momma oughta' halt making excuses for him.

Micky G would kayo him in a half of round. But that would never happen because G Rus Junebug has more optical illusions than David Copperfield in working that magic to get outta reality of the actuality.

Anybody can looked awesome against his setup opposition. A few years ago, there was a fighter who 34-0 -- 34 kayos -- until he got KTFO on Showtime. Maybe he was also from Washington D.C. I don't remember. Holla!

Carmine Cas says:

Yeah I have yet to be truly impressed with GRJR, sure his flashy speed elicits oohs and ahhs but he almost looks like he's pitter pattering especially when he flurries with the uppercut. He needs to fight someone legit.

Carmine Cas says:

Andy Ruiz and Mike Perez are good picks

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