There were some great fights in 2013 and we learned a few things too: That - upon seeing his better-half - Carl Froch is punching WAY above his weight, Eastern Europeans are as hard as fuck and that you're never more than 6 feet away from a boxer from Liverpool.
We had the huge Froch Vs Groves encounter, which really was a massive advert for British boxing. On a similar theme, the continued form of the mercurial Scott Quigg made for wonderful viewing. There was a lot of positives to draw for British boxing last year; though Lee Purdy's money laundering charges not being one of them. 'Lights out' indeed...
With any luck, 2014 will bring its own host of dream-wetting fights. Below is a list of 5 fights I'd personally like to see. Seeing them actually happen is another matter; boxing is unfortunately tainted with fighters who would rather have a big pay day than to gain some credence of their ability amongst the boxing community. So, if you're reading this esteemed boxing promoters, please take some time out from being disgustingly rich and smothered in hooker-ridden cigar smoke and ensure these happen.
1) Carl Froch Vs George Groves II
A real obvious one, though I don't think there's ANYONE (other than the 'warrior') who wants this rematch. I am very much not a fan of Froch's boxing. Effective - yes, but it is one of the most graceless things I've seen in my sorry years on this planet. I've seen cold dogs shit down a Hoxton alleyway with more style than the way Froch throws his jab. That being said, he does have an iron chin and didn't win his belts by pure chance. Should the rematch go ahead, everyone's money is likely to be on Groves. By far the better boxer and now a firm fan favourite since Froch has come across somewhat arrogant since his stoppage victory. Froch is a great slugger, but he can't cope with a fast boxer like Groves. Should the fight happen and Groves stick to his previous game plan, then it'd be hard to look past the IBF and WBA super-middleweight belts changing hands.
2) Adonis Stevenson Vs Sergey Kovalev
Stevenson announced he wanted to take on Froch or Hopkins after his slaughtering of Bellew, but to me this bout makes a lot more sense (maybe that's because Kovalev won't be trying to hammer my face to mush with his stony hands of Russian justice). Both of these guys have great power in their punches; Stevenson's left hand is a thing of beauty, as proved his his last few KO's. Kovalev though, has sheer dynamite under both gloves. I imagine his shots that rocked Sillakh felt like a bus hitting you - forever. Kovalev would be my favourite to win this one and there's no doubt it'd be a fantastic fight. This is probably the best the Light Heavyweight division has looked since the days of Roy Jones Jr in his prime. There's a resurgence of fighters coming from the Eastern Europe at the moment (Golovkin (he has a Russian father you pedantic bastards) and Provodnikov as other examples) and they all share that same disciplined soviet style of fighting. Marching through shots and then landing devastating strikes of their own, this would be a great platform for Kovalev to step up and make a real name for himself in this dreamy unification match.
3) Scott Quigg Vs Carl Frampton
Beyond the aforementioned Froch/Groves fight, this is probably the best British fight that I would be beguiled to see. Both unbeaten and both VERY skilled boxers; this would be another solid spectacle for British boxing. I saw Quigg on the Froch/Groves undercard and he looked very impressive. He has the stamina of a racehorse and the surname of a shit detective, everything you could possibly need to hold your own against Frampton. Though only 17 fights into his career, I think Frampton is ready to step-up from this 'Inter-Continental' nonsense and make a shot at the world stage to have a shot at the WBA super-bantamweight belt. It'd be a match as tight as Jamie Redknapp's trousers, but with more groin and less shine.
4) Sergio Martinez Vs Gennady Golovkin
Golovkin is wank fodder for boxing fans at the moment and for good reason too. With one of the best KO ratios in the middleweight division - of all time - and having never been knocked down; Golovkin really does seem to be the real deal. He's yet to fight a real top class boxer though, with Martinez being the closet thing to that at Middleweight and also WBC title; this is the surely one of the fights that needs to happen in 2014. Martinez is way past his peak, but is still a top fighter and has bags of experience. Personally, I feel the Argentine would get battered around the ring like a deranged toddler beating a doll. However, you can never write a vintage boxer like Martinez off.
5) Floyd Mayweather Vs Manny Pacquiao
Years on and this still needs to happen. Many suspected Manny was done with after his dubious loss to Timothy Bradley, but he showed he's still the unremitting menace we enjoyed watching as he unleashed flurry after flurry on poor Brandon Rios. Pacquiao's style of hunting down his opponents will make for superb viewing against Mayweather;s silk defensive style (quite similar to Timothy Bradleys, in my humble opinion). Mayweather should be fighting Amir Kahn next, which in itself will be an interesting spectacle, but this is still the blockbuster for me. To this day, this is probably still the biggest fight waiting to happen; it's very much Corrie Vs Eastenders or Jenna Jameson Vs Savanna Samson. It's a crying shame this didn't happen 2-3 years back, but that's the stark reality of boxing.