We have all seen the clips on YouTube where a dim-witted individual foolishly decides to poke a deadly snake with a stick. At the conclusion of the fuzzy, poorly shot video, the main protagonist is normally nursing a badly bitten arm, as nature yet again proves her intelligence over the human race. The moral of the story is simply “do not antagonise dangerous snakes”.
American boxer Yusaf Mack should have learnt that elementary lesson before deciding to insult Carl “The Cobra” Froch, ahead of their much anticipated encounter for the IBF super-middleweight title at the Nottingham Capital FM Arena this Saturday.
When Mack conducted a television interview last month, he took the opportunity to call Froch a “fake Joe Calzaghe”. This, unsurprisingly, has enraged Froch who intends to make Mack pay for his ill-advised comments.
The American does have a impressive record, but he is not in the same class as Froch, so maybe the attempt to unsettle his British adversary looked like a shrewd move. However, there is a fine line between a master plan and idiocy; a line I believe Mack has crossed.
Froch exudes passion and pride, coupled with phenomenal punching power every time he steps inside the ring. I fear Mack will pay for his misjudgment come fight time.
On the other hand, maybe Mack’s comment was a masterstroke. You do not normally see Froch losing his cool in front of the media, but it is obvious that the Joe Calzaghe situation still lingers with him.
When Calzaghe retired undefeated, Froch was the youthful star of the domestic middleweight division, and opinion has always been divided on who is the better super-middleweight fighter. Froch and Calzaghe locking horns in either Cardiff or Nottingham would have ranked up there with the legendary Nigel Benn v Chris Eubank wars from the 1990s, but it was sadly not to be.
Froch is now a three-time champion but the specter of Joe Calzaghe will haunt him long into his retirement. Mack played up to that in an attempt to get under his skin, but like our YouTube hero poking a cobra with a stick, I suspect he will learn that provoking deadly animals normally ends with the antagonist receiving a lethal bite.
At this juncture, it is expected that the journalist makes a bold prediction and prepares to have egg on his face, so here goes: Carl Froch in the 5th round TKO
Carl Froch: Age, 35. Total fights: 31. Wins: 29. Wins by TKO: 21. Draw: 0. Losses: 2.
Yusaf Mack: Age, 32. Total fights: 37. Wins: 31. Wins by TKO: 17. Draw: 2. Losses: 4
What is your prediction for the big fight?.
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