Saturday, February 6, 2010
Clottey not focused on Pacquiao fight?
DALLAS - Am I confused or is Joshua Clottey having serious problems with everything from possibly losing his trainer to a recent desperation overseas flight home and just today (Saturday) settling into a real training camp just 36 days out from his fight with Manny Pacquiao?
Trainer Godwin Dzainie Kotey isn't being granted a visa from the America Embassy in Accra, Ghana. Vinny Scolpino, Clottey's New York - based manager says a statement will be forthcoming during the week, but as far as training he says everything was just fine and on track.
I don't believe him.
Co-promoter Jerry Jones and company can't afford for Clottey to put forth a half-ass or otherwise distracted effort and have ticket buyers heading for the exits early before making a few runs to the concession stands and soaking up the $1.15 billion Cowboys Stadium experience.
Ultimately, Jones needs the fans to have a great time and want to come back.
Actually all of boxing, including Floyd Mayweather, Jr. and Golden Boy Promotions, needs Joshua Clottey to if not win outright, to put on a respectable effort.
I wrote when Clottey was just being considered as the opponent that he was the most dangerous guy out there. I guess that makes me what Michael Marley would call an Everlast Einstein.
I need to start hearing Clottey is using up and running off sparring partners and no media is allowed in the gym because they have a top secret weapon and strategy for Pacquiao and a special punch just for him.
I believed it last month but I don't know if I do today.
I remember last summer Clottey pretty much coasted in the final two rounds against Miguel Cotto when most thought the fight was close and winnable for the Ghanaian.
Now I'm not at all saying Clottey would put up anything but a very polished professional effort, but if Pacquiao senses a weakness he would quickly exploit it.
I'm saying Team Clottey better get its act together because this is Manny Pacquiao and it's the big time.
If Bob Arum or any other big shots have a friend in an American Embassy or Port Authority, now would be the time to call in the favor and pull the trigger and make that call or Clottey is going into training today in Fort Lauderdale, FL at less than full speed and a lack of momentum.
Author: Matt Stolow