Many critics and haters of the sport of boxing often say that boxing is either dead, dying or on life support, but just this past week alone there were several reasons why boxing is still great and even superior to your favorite sport.
Here are some of the top five reasons why boxing is still great from this past week.
Undefeated Puerto Rican-American champion Danny Garcia silenced many of his critics—including the person writing this piece—on why he should be taken seriously as a true champion, when he stopped Amir Khan Saturday night in a thrilling all-action fight.
Garcia was cut early on and behind in the first two rounds to a faster Khan clearly out-boxing him, but he was not discouraged. Instead, he became more focused and determined to win.
At the end of the third round, Garica lands a perfectly timed counter left hook that knocked down Khan hard and had him wobbly, holding on to survive the rest of the round.
At the top of fourth round Garcia pounds away on Khan making referee Bayless administer a standing eight-count knockdown (which we hardly see these days).
At the end of the fourth, Garcia throws two wide shots that barely graze Khan's head, sending him down to the canvas again.
Referee Bayless looks deep into Khan's face and asks him if he wants to continue. Khan says yes, but his body, mannerism and facial expression seems to say no. Bayless waves off the fight.
This fight was a major upset for Garcia, a big under dog and a replacement opponent for Khan after Lamont Peterson tested positive for banned substances in their rematch.
It's fights like these, where both fighters go for the knockout and really turn it up for the fans, that win over new fans and show that boxing can be exciting if the fighters really truly leave it all in the ring.
Garcia may have won over a lot of new fans and made a bigger name for himself that night. He did it the way all up-and-coming rising stars should do via knock out.
The heavyweight division in boxing, for the longest time, has recently been the snooze-fest of the sport with many slow, painfully boring heavyweight elites fighting in slow, painfully boring fights.
Historically ironic, the heavyweight division and heavyweight champion were often the most respected and watched weight class of the sport. Many icons from other sports often looked up to and envied the heavyweight champions and the heavyweight elites.
David Haye vs. Dereck Chisora was virtually not promoted at all within the United States, but over seas in the UK it was a huge deal.
Many hardcore boxing fans here in America took to the live streams to watch the heavyweight showdown between these two British Knights, with bad blood that involved Haye smashing a glass bottle over the head of Chisora at the Klitschko vs. Chisora post-fight conference.
Chisora looked great in putting on a one-sided clinic against top elite heavyweight prospect Robert Helenius, but was ultimately robbed in Robert's hometown.
Chisora's performance was so good that it got him a title shot against WBC heavyweight champion, Vitali Kilitschko. Here, he went the distance with Dr. Iron Fist.
Many wondered how Haye would look Saturday with being retired and out of the ring for over an entire year. He fought Wladimir Klitschko one year ago in a fight where he was content running away from any harm and just collecting a career-high paycheck.
That performance made many question Haye's heart and dedication to ever unifying the heavyweight titles and beating a Klitschko brother.
Ironically, Haye came back stronger and focused more than ever by outboxing Chisora in four rounds, then knocking him down twice in the fifth round and stopping him.
Call me crazy, but if Haye fought Wladimir like he had done against Chisora, he could have beaten him or at least made it an exciting competitive fight.
Also, consider that Vitali Klitschko went the distance and could not stop Chisora but that Haye did.
If Haye stays this focused and determined throughout, I see him making true waves again and for real this time in the heavyweight division. That is what we need.
#DavidHaye was one of the top trends on Twitter worldwide Saturday, so that says a lot.
The long-anticipated middleweight championship fight of Julio Cesar Chavez Jr. vs Sergio Martinez fight kicked off the press tour last week for their big September 15th match.
Many true fight fans have been eagerly waiting for Chavez to take on a true elite 160-pound fighter, despite his having an undefeated record of 46(32)-0-1.
Sergio Martinez is widely regarded as the MAN at 160lbs and being the former 160lbs WBO and WBC champion and no longer having either belt due to political reasons.
It is pretty impressive that Chavez is taking on Martinez now after few years when many said he would never face Sergio.
Why does this fight mean so much?
First off, the winner of this fight will be an instant household name. Chavez has been riding the fame and prestige of his father's last name and legendary icon status. A legitimately impressive win over Martinez solidifies his own resume and reputation and proves that he is where he is not just because of his legendary father.
If Martinez wins, much of the Mexican and Mexican-American hardcore fanbase will most likely finally embrace the Argentinian fighter who has made home in both Spain and Oxnard, California. Some feel that Martinez has been lacking the strong foundation of an ethnic group of fans, for he has been called a fighter with no home base.
At the same time, this fight promoted by Top Rank promotions will go head to head with Golden Boy Promotions for the second biggest fight date of the year, the September 15th Mexican Independence Holiday. Golden Boy is having their own fight card, with Saul "Canelo" Alvarez defending his title against the (Riverside Rocky) Josesito Lopez, who will be going up two weight classes.
Already, the Top Rank Promotions main event of Chavez vs. Martinez, by far, owns Alvarez vs. Lopez, so this will make Golden Boy stack their under card to make up for the main event.
So far, Golden Boy has announced that Ponce De Leon vs. Jhonny Gonzales will also be on the card, and they will be announcing their WBC featherweight title match Tuesday at noon.
WBC 122-pound champion Abner Mares has been offered a fight on the Golden Boy September 15th card as well, and his management has demonstrated that they are still considering it.
Is it good that the two major promotions company are going head-to-head for the huge Mexican Independence Day fight date?
Well, boxing like any other sport, is all about competition, so if it provides us with better fights from both rival promotions company, then that is always a plus.
You just have to choose wisely on which one you will see live and which one you will you TiVo.
If you caught the ESPYS last Wednesday, hosted by Rob Riggle, you might have noticed that Rob had given Manny Pacquiao a major shoutout in his opening show monologue, explaining how the ESPYS are for true hardcore fans who vote and know what's really up with sports.
The punchline of his joke was in regards to Manny Pacquiao losing his highly controversial fight to Timothy Bradley last month.
Here is the actual joke:
The ESPYS are really about the fans. They are the ones who chose every winner tonight. Real fans, and you know the kind of people I'm talking about. I'm talking about the ones who proudly wear their team's jerseys in their opponents stadium. The people who don't leave early just to beat the traffic. The people who know that Manny Pacquiao really won that fight! Viva Los Filipinos! Viva Los Filipinos! (With the Filipino flag and colors being displayed on the jumbo tron screens behind him on stage).
It's major props for the sport of boxing that Rob Riggle included this joke in his opening monologue, as it really shows how Manny Pacquiao has become so huge of a star for Riggle to feel that Pacquiao's highly controversial loss to Bradley was relevant enough to open the show with.
Say what you will about Manny Pacquiao, but he and Floyd Mayweather are the two biggest superstars of the sport. When they fight, the rest of the world takes notice.
Floyd Mayweather wins the ESPY Fighter of the Year Award beating out UFC stars Jon Jones, Anderson Silva and boxing champion Andre Ward.
Mayweather, despite currently being incarcerated, having defeated Victor Ortiz by a legal sucker punch knockout and Miguel Cotto by a competitive unanimous decision beats all the other fighters to his claim to being the fighter of the year.
Is this a slap to the face of UFC fans who wanted either Jones or Silva to take it? Probably so.
Or how about Andre Ward who too is undefeated and, one may argue, a fighter who took on the more elite prime competition and even won a super middleweight tournament.
This really shows that Floyd is on such a different level in terms of his skills, popularity and fame, and this is obviously big props to the sport of boxing.
I personally thought Jones, who had a huge year—he too had some recent legal drama with his DUI incident—would win the award or, of course, Silva, who made UFC/MMA history last weekend when he TKO'd Chael Sonnen.
Whether you like it or not, Floyd Mayweather is on a different level in terms of skills, popularity, and fame, and his ESPY Fighter of the Year Award speaks for itself.
KING J is the Bleacher Report Boxing Community Leader and Featured Columnist.
Follow on Twitter: @KingJ323