Thursday, February 12, 2015

Might Andy Lee Soon Be Looked On As An Equal Of Cotto And GGG?

Peter Quillin is getting the chance to both redeem his reputation and to gain a world title when he faces WBO middleweight champ Andy Lee on April 15th at Brooklyn's Barclays Center. Quillin, after all, passed on a million dollar pay when he refused to fight Matt Korobov. Lee ended up fighting Korobov instead, and subsequently won the title. Quillin, on the other hand, won a whole lot of mockery. That can all change if Quillin bests Lee in New York next spring.

Lee, however, clearly has an agenda of his own. And that's to be one of the top dogs of the middleweight division. For here is a man most didn't expect to end up holding a portion of the middleweight title to begin with. In fact, most people didn't expect it until the moment Lee put Korobov pretty much into orbit with a smashing right hook.

Lee had been behind in the bout, after all. What's more, although fans knew who Lee was when he met Korobov, the Irish native was pretty much flying under the radar at the time. For the middleweight world, filled with Cottos, Martinez and Golovkins, seemed a bit too glistening and full for the 30 year old vet.

Lee may not be flying under the radar anymore - but he still has a lot to prove. While few would deny that he's an absolutely thrilling fighter, Lee isn't held in the same regard as fellow middleweight champs Miguel Cotto and Gennady Golovkin. There's a reason for this, of course. Cotto is a legend, and Golovkin, with his seek and destroy style, looks like he might be on the way to becoming one himself.

If Lee were to beat Quillin soundly, however, he might well start to find himself in more rarefied air. Missed opportunities aside, Quillin is an impressive middleweight indeed. Possessing a perfect 31-0 record, the Chicago native can boast of having KOd 22 of his opponents, including the rugged Gabriel Rosado. The man, simply put, is no joke.

It will be interesting to see how experts and analysts pick this one. It would seem that most would favor Quillin. At least one analyst of note, however, is leaning towards Lee - and with good reason. For Lee has heart. Real heart. Losses to Julio Caesar Chavez Jr and Brian Vera didn't keep him from earning a title. Nor did impressive early performances from Korobov and John Jackson, both of who Lee came back to beat.

Truth be told, there's a reason the late, great Emanuel Steward had such faith in Lee. It would be a mistake to collectively sell this man short.

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