According to Boxrec.com Willie Monroe Jr. is currently ranked #3 in the United States and #9 in the world among active professional middleweight boxers so it begs the question, why won’t anyone step up to the plate to fight him? Albeit, as his publicist, friend and close confidant I am a little biased but as a fan of boxing I, as do many other boxing fans, question the motives behind keeping him out of the ring.
At 30 years young, he is in his prime. He doesn’t smoke, drink or partake in any extracurricular activities which could jeopardize his preparedness for a championship fight. He trains daily, is in optimal shape and is ready to fight anyone, anywhere. He has taken fights with little less than a month’s notice. He stays ready so he never has to get ready!
His only losses have come to Darnell Boone who has fought the likes of Adonis Stevenson, Andre Ward, Sergey Kovalev, Erislandy Lara and Curtis Stevens and beat Willie by a split decision which arguably could have gone the other way. His other loss came to the powerful hands of the best middleweight champion out now, Gennady Golovkin.
Willie is a slick southpaw who truly understands boxing. He comes from a family of boxers who have left their mark in the professional boxing realm. His uncle Willie “The Worm” Monroe beat Marvelous Marvin Hagler and handed the great boxer his first loss. Willie most recently beat Gabriel Rosado by unanimous decision in front of 50,000+ fans at AT&T stadium.
While Rosado did his talking outside of the ring, mocking and trying to belittle Monroe, Willie handled his business inside of the ring. He made Rosado eat his words and showcased a boxing clinic that Rosado himself could not understand and obviously did not expect. Mind you he took this fight with just a few week’s notice. The most action Rosado put forth was the day prior at the weigh in when he pushed Monroe. That would be the last time he did anything significant to impose his power on Monroe.
That fight set up a showdown with Canelo Alvarez who was injured and unable to fight several months later. He later declined to fight Willie. Once again, the question must be asked, why are so many boxers afraid to fight Willie?
In and out of the ring, Willie does exactly what he is supposed to do. He trains hard, and truly loves and appreciates his fans. He carries himself with a certain level of dignity and respect not seen often by today’s boxing standards. Fans are shocked when they realize how approachable and willing he is to engage with them. He always greets them with his infectious smile and goes above and beyond to make them feel welcomed.
Many are always taken aback by the fact that he spends a considerable amount of time with them, posing for pictures, signing autographs and talking about his love of boxing. They appreciate the fact that he is one of only a handful of celebrities who makes the time to do so and does so willingly. He is a also a pillar of his community volunteering his time to always give back. Willie has not forgotten where he comes from. Trust me, I’ve seen it on many occasions.
So once again, I pose the question….why are so many boxers afraid to fight Willie? Is it due to his high boxing IQ? Is it because he poses a threat to not only his opponents, but the investors behind these boxers who fear that a boxer like Willie can derail their plans? Many promoters, investors and those who stand to lose a lot of money fear a boxer like Willie. What they want is to control their own destiny and not have a boxer face their investment and win. They want an opponent who just stands there and takes punishment. They don’t want to face a boxer who could potentially jeopardize their cash cow.
Willie creates problems for boxers. His ring IQ, awareness, slick style and natural boxing abilities pose problems for boxers who have been set up to coast through their opponents. I honestly believe that his style and approach was the game plan Danny Jacobs used when he fought GGG last month and came very close to beating the middleweight champion.
Yeah, yeah, I know, critics will say “Willie quit that fight”! While he may have decided enough was enough that day, those who don’t understand the business of boxing will never comprehend how the cards were stacked against him on that day in LA. They won’t comprehend the obstacles Willie faced even before the first bell rung.
It’s easy for anyone to say he quit but they don’t realize that what he did was lay down the blueprint for beating Gennady and they won’t understand that he did what was best for him, his family and his future by making that extremely difficult decision. I was there and alongside his family, I understood why he did what he did. One does not play boxing! Boxing is a very dangerous sport. One decision based off pride can lead to devastating consequences. We see it too often.
The most recent example of this is close friend to Willie, boxer Prichard Colon, who is now living in a vegetative state unable to box let alone live a normal life after a fight in which he suffered from bleeding in his brain. This led to a coma and his current state. Boxing is a dangerous sport where boxers risk their lives for our entertainment but do so to provide for their families and do what they do best, box!
So once again, I ask, why is Willie the most feared man in boxing? I honestly believe it has a lot to do with the politics of boxing. It has a lot to do with Willie’s style. It has a lot to do with the fact that opponents and their investors know they have a tough fight on their hands when they fight the likes of Willie Monroe Jr! Many say it’s because Willie doesn’t have the power. Others say his is not exciting in the ring.
Honestly, I say they’re wrong! Willie epitomizes the sweet science. He represents boxing in its purest form. He possesses a unique set of skills not found in many boxers today. He knows how to cut off the ring, make his opponent miss and he knows how to derail their plans. He refuses to stand there and trade shot for shot. Instead he uses his slickness, natural abilities, ring intelligence and speed to frustrate his opponents. In a nutshell, he makes them look bad! This is what he has done time and time again!
The thing about Willie Monroe Jr. is that he is persistent. He continues to train daily although no fight has been announced yet. He continues to live a positive life. He continues to be the man who defies the odds. He continues to be the best person, friend, brother, husband, and father he can be regardless of the fact. He will take a fight at the drop of a dime and will continue to fight for what’s his, inside and outside of the ring.
The Charlo twins, Saunders, Canelo, Cotto, Lemieux and these so-called fighters take notice, the Mongoose is out here and he surely doesn’t fear you! He will continue to train and he will always be ready! Until the powers that be step up to the plate and accept the challenge, Willie will continue to be the most feared man in boxing!