While preparing for his May 2012 fight against Miguel Cotto, Floyd Mayweather Jr., then 42-0, was asked to name his toughest opponent. His answer was the same as it had always been: Emanuel Augustus. He didn’t have the best record in the sport of boxing; he has never won a world title, but,” said Mayweather, “he came to fight.”

If there is a go-to anecdote that veritable legion of Augustus enthusiasts calls on in their apologies for a fighter who retired with a 38-34-6 (20) record, this is it. It is a compliment that warrants some unpacking. Mayweather would have no problem so lavishly complimenting a fighter he was, by then, in no way competing with. Indeed, by isolating Augustus, Mayweather was effectively diminishing the challenges posed by opponents such as Jose Luis Castillo, who many argue beat Mayweather in their first fight, or Oscar De La Hoya, who fared better against the best fighter in the world than his aged form should’ve allowed. And you can trust that Mayweather expected his answer to find some traction, hence the “sport of boxing” he couldn’t resist using when pressed to speak of his trade on the record. Mayweather hedged immediately after that praise, too, inserting the often-ignored qualifier that he “took a long layoff” before the Augustus fight.

But the compliment stands—and so it should.

Augustus made Mayweather earn his twenty-fourth professional victory; there was hardly a free moment for “Pretty Boy,” who was forced to fight, and dazzlingly so, to put away Augustus in the ninth. Craft pushed Mayweather that night: you need more than talent, or physicality, or toughness to trouble so complete a fighter as the lightweight version of Mayweather.

We should take Mayweather at his word, then, just as we did James Toney—a man less calculated in his compliments, loathe as he is to offer them—when the fiercely proud fighter praised Mike McCallum as the best fighter with whom he had shared the ring. And so a .500 fighter, a career .500 fighter, not one who ran up a gaudy record before being derailed, is the best fighter this generation’s best fighter ever faced. It is for reasons like this that people like to say Augustus’s record fails to tell the story.

Are they right to do so? And if Augustus’s record fails to tell the defining story, does it still tell us something?

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A USA Basketball Coach Academy – presented by Nike – will take place on Aug. 8-9 at Durango High School in Las Vegas. Registration and more information are available online.

Launched in 2015, USA Basketball Coach Academies provide valuable insight and education to basketball coaches and administrators. Academy sessions impart the USA Basketball curriculum for a proper skill development path to teach the game to children of all ages and ability levels. Guest speakers focus on areas of expertise to present on basketball and leadership topics applied both on and off the court.

Expected to present at the event are: 

  • Jennie Baranczyk, Drake University women’s basketball head coach
  • Jeff Culver, University of Colorado Colorado Springs Men’s Basketball coach and USA Basketball Men’s Junior National Team court coach
  • Mike Dunlap, Loyola Marymount University men’s basketball head coach
  • Kevin Eastman, motivational speaker and former NBA coach
  • Mike Jones, DeMatha Catholic High School boys basketball head coach and gold medal winning USA Basketball coach
  • TJ Otzelberger, University of Nevada, Las Vegas men’s basketball head coach
  • Jennifer Rizzotti, George Washington University women’s basketball head coach and gold medal winning USA Basketball coach
  • Don Showalter, USA Basketball Youth & Sport Development coach director and 10-time gold medalist USA Basketball head coach
  • Brendan Suhr, former NBA coach
  • Sharman White, Pace Academy boys basketball head coach and gold medal winning USA Basketball assistant coach

USA Basketball Coach Academies feature a multi–day format with presentations catered to coaches of all experience levels working with players of any skill set.

On Aug. 8, the USA Basketball Coach Academy in Las Vegas will run from 9 a.m.-5 p.m. PDT with an evening social reception at Top Golf from 7-9 p.m. And on Aug. 9, the academy will be from 9 a.m.-1 p.m.

Registration for the event is $225. USA Basketball gold licensed coaches are eligible for a 25% discount.

Attendees will have networking opportunities to meet and socialize with one another, as well as with speakers. In addition, USA Basketball and Nike gift items will be provided to all registered attendees. 

Sessions at a USA Basketball Coach Academy feature a variety of styles of teaching, including: player demonstrations, lectures, panel discussions, on court basketball instruction and off court coaching techniques and life skills training.

Attendees must be at least 18 years old to register.


Tyron Woodley has never had much of a problem talking about what’s on his mind - especially when it comes to fellow UFC fighters. So when Jon Jones was charged with battery over an alleged incident in a strip club in April, it was expected that Woodley would weigh in on things eventually.

On a recent episode of his TMZ Sports show, The Hollywood Beatdown, T-Wood took the conversation in an unexpected direction, and somehow roped Conor McGregor into things: (transcription via MMA News)

“We gonna act like Conor doesn’t do that every week? And we still want to put him on every fight card; he’s the biggest star. The second Jon Jones does something…”

“I’m defending the fact that we selectively throw people under the bus. Conor has done way worse things than Jon, and he’s glorified and praised as some Scarface of our sport. So I’m not gonna be too hard on Jon (when) I don’t even know the details.”

He is clear that he’s not blindly supporting Jones though:

“I’m not gonna give him a pass, either, because it ain’t my job to give the pass out. All I’m saying is this: Let’s get all the details first, but let’s not forget there’s a lot of bullsh-t that go on in our sport that we glorify.”

Woodley (19-4-1, 9-3-1 UFC) had been scheduled to return against Robbie Lawler, but was forced out of the bout with an injury. The former UFC welterweight champion remains on the sidelines.


Top Rank promoter Bob Arum believes the reason why IBF welterweight champion Errol Spence Jr. isn’t fighting his guy WBO champ Terence Crawford in a big pay-per-view match is because his adviser Al Haymon has no confidence in Errol that he can win the fight. Arum says he understands that, given that he would do the same thing if he had a big name guy that he didn’t believe could win a fight against another talented fighter.


Arum says Crawford deserves 50-50 purse split for Spence fight

Top Rank boss Arum says he’s ready to make the Crawford vs. Spence fight as soon as possible, as long as Errol’s adviser Haymon of Premier Boxing Champions is willing to agree to a 50-50 purse spit. That’s something that Arum may not be able to get though, because Spence (25-0, 21 KOs) has already shown that he’s a bigger draw than Crawford with his recent successful pay-per-view fight against Mikey Garcia.

The fight brought in over 400,000 buys on Fox Sports PPV. In contrast, Crawford’s two ventures into PPV against Amir Khan and Viktor Postol were dismal failures. The Crawford-Khan fight is said to have done little more than 200,000 buys on ESPN PPV. Spence, 29, will be fighting WBC welterweight champion Shawn Porter (30-2-1, 17 KOs) next on September 28 on Fox Sport Pay-Per-View. If that match does huge numbers a well, that’s going to make it even tougher for the Spence vs. Crawford fight to get made. If Arum continues to stubbornly talk about wanting a 50-50 split for his fighter Crawford, he’s going to ruin the chances of that match ever getting made. Crawford is already 32, and that’s not young for a welterweight.

Terence needs the fight with Spence

Crawford’s days are numbered as an elite level fighter. Once Crawford’s hand speed takes a hit, he’ll have nothing to fall back on other than his gimmicky switch hitting that he does. You can argue that Crawford’s constant changing of stances doesn’t effect his fights, because he’s better when he’s fighting out of his orthodox right-handed stance. The casual fans are the ones that impressed with Crawford’s switch-hitting gimmick that he uses. It doesn’t help him win, because he’s already beating his opponents when he’s fighting right-handed.

Arum says Spence would be in danger of losing to Crawford

“For Haymon, it was a win-win for Andy Ruiz to go over and do that fight on DAZN [against Anthony Joshua], because Andy Ruiz wasn’t a marquee guy on PBC, so it was a win-win for him,” said Arum to Fighthub. “The question of whether he takes a marquee guy, which Errol certainly is, and puts him with Crawford, even though his network and ESPN would share the pay-per-view distribution, that’s another thing. Because there he takes a marquee guy and he’s in danger of losing, and then he hurts himself.

The way Spence and Crawford looked in their recent fights, Errol would ave to be viewed as the favorite to win that fight. He’s bigger, stronger, and can do all the little gimmicky things that Crawford can do.

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