I am going to be upfront and tell you that James Toney is my favorite fighter of all-time. I own his career set and have seen pretty much every fight of his that has been recorded.
So when I heard he signed to fight big punching cruiserweight Denis Lebedev I was less than thrilled. Toney is 43-years-old and frankly hasn't looked really good since his 2003 TKO of Evander Holyfield.
He has gone 6-2-1 with 2 no contests since that fight. You can argue that he lost to Fres Oquendo in 2008. You could also argue that he beat Sam Peter in their first fight in 2006.
The other problem is that 2008 fight was three fights ago. Toney has been highly inactive.
So to think he was going to compete with the 32-year-old power puncher was a bit of a stretch. I figured he could make it interesting because he knows every trick in the book and has stepped into the ring 84 times.
But seeing these new pictures of Toney I must say that it looks like he has a legitimate chance against the crude Lebedev, who has never been a good boxer.
Toney is as slick as they come and his chin has never been dented. He is going to be able to outbox Lebedev and should be able to take his shots. Lebedev didn't look good against a gun shy, super faded Roy Jones Jr.
It appears that Toney is finally dedicated to boxing again and looking to make one final impact in the game. If he can beat Lebedev he will claim the interim WBA cruiserweight title.
(Photos are courtesy of www.boxingscene.com)