Monthly Archives: January 2011

Funnymentals of Boxing in Photos

The Heavenly Halo


The Refreshing Spritzer Mist


The Perfect Snot Blaster


The Spontaneous Planning Conference


The Perfect Postioning


Soaring Flight


Sequential Ritualistic Mayhem


The Come Thee Hither Look


The Primo Straightener


Free Rabbits


Sheriff Sez Hands Up & Against the Ropes


Too Much Merry Making


Sometimes Ya Jus’Git Dat Ol‘Rassler Feelin’


Le Cheeky Engarde Moment


Tiny Turtle Pantomime


The Perfect Mug Defense


C’mon, It Weren’t That Bad!


Trainers, They Do Come In Handy Sometimes


I’m Outta Here!


Paranormal Levitation


The Perfect Ring Setup


Gonna Crack This Rock If It Kills Me





Evander Holyfield–When Enough Ain’t Enough

Good golly Miss Folly, when will enough be ENOUGH ALREADY for Evander Holyfield?

"The Greenbriar"

“The Greenbriar”

So as not to be a spoilsport, I’m OK that he is fighting  Sherman Williams at The Greenbrier, a historic high end hotel resort privy to the moneyed bluebloods and the ruling establishment of Washington DC.

Hey, it’s the kind of classy soft landing clubfight venue that fans and former fans of 48 yr old Mr. Holyfield have long pined for after a career spent going against most of the best heavyweights of the 1990s, one of the best heavyweight eras of boxing.

Mr. Field notched his first top ten heavy scalp in 1989 against Michel Dokes in a thrilling fight of the year kinda slugfest that wowed boxing fans everywhere. In between his last top ten scalp against Hasim Rahman in 2002, Mr. Holyfield managed to win 4 heavyweight titles, a new record, but the magic was clearly gone when he had to billygoat his way to victory over Rahman in a bizarre technical win that ended with Rahman sporting a lump the size of a softball over his eye.

That’s a long legendary 13 years against the best, and an even longer 9 years afterwards that sees Mr. Holyfield struggling to show any form against top ten fighters. He has even struggled against retired, inactive heavies on the comeback trail, aka Sherman Williams, 34-11-2, 19 KO as it may happen this Saturday at The Greenbrier.

This fight has been bounced around from venue to venue as promoters struggle to put together a viable package they can market as has happened to many of Mr. Holyfield’s scheduled opponents whose fights ultimately were canceled for lack of promotional and public interest. His next fight is supposed to be on March 5th against Brian Nielsen in Copenhagen, Denmark.

The soon to be 46 yr old former IBO/IBC champ Brian Nielson is another retired heavy announcing a comeback after a sweet 9 year vacation. And why shouldn’t he hop on the newly formed Real Deal Senior Circuit?

Mike Tyson, Lennox Lewis and Larry Holmes are reported to have received special viewing invitations at this historic West Virginia landmark, so could be a chance for one or all to scout out the promotion and contemplate their own comebacks against Mr. Holyfield.

And I’m OK with that, this new senior circuit league.

What I’m not OK with is Mr. Holyfield’s incessant quest to not only regain a 5th heavyweight title, but to unify the division, something he could never do in his prime, though he did win and go to defend a unified title 3x before losing it to Riddick Bowe.

Don King leveraged the legend of Mr. Holyfield to maneuver him to two consecutive title challenges in 2007-2008 to WBO champ Sultan Ibragimov and WBA champ NikolayValuev. He could scarcely mount an offensive threat against the champs who were clearly wearing the cuffs, not wishing to be the one blamed for scrambling the remainder of his brains for the rest of his life, or WORSE!

In his prime as a champion, Mr. Holyfield’s KO ratio was abysmal and has only gotten worse as his reflexes abandoned him while aging through the decades. It just ain’t a fairfight anymore unless he gets “assistance” from officials as he now requires.

The Greenbrier “Redemption in America” card has been heavily promoted in Fightnews, seemingly some dozen or more articles every week for several weeks now. He did an interview with boxing fanhouse as part of the leadup to the fight claiming the Klitschkos are ducking him:

I don’t know what is more laughable, or is it cryable, when Mr. Holyfield followed the ducking charge on the topic of money, how much he made and how much he could make for everyone, splitting $40 million against one of the brothers in ‘Vander World.

Newsflash for Mr. Holyfield:

Top contenders don’t want to fight you because they don’t want to hit you, and as much as you want to hit them, you can’t any more than you could hit the side of a barn with a sawed off shotgun in your current state of decline.

It Happens

It Happens

Give it up and stay on the senior circuit.

I suspect even the rusting 258 lb Sherman “Tank” will give you more fire than team Atlanta has seen since General Sherman marched through the Atlanta cottonfields some 145 yrs ago. The parallel may be lost on you, but fairplay, we know the fight is the perfect prep for a Tyson rubber match, something more in your league, so good luck, but please, keep your delusions to yourself, you’re scarin’ folks.

George Foreman was knocking around a prime Shannon Briggs like a bowling pin at your age, but you ain’t Big Bad George. You were  lucky enough hang on for dear life in the closing rounds to survive him in your prime, a distant 20 yrs ago.

For the sake of boxing, your fans, and more importantly, your family, especially your children, please do find that perfect soft spot to land your retirement on with a semblance of dignity your career deserves.

Oh, did I mention Mr. Holyfield is defending his newly “won” World Boxing Federation heavyweight title he acquired from “knocking out” Kris Kringle in the form of one Frans Botha?

Yah, va con Dios, mi amigo.

Tommy Morrison Through The Looking Glass in Never-Never Land

Dear Tommy,

Is it Tommy Morrison or Tommy Gunn, or have the personages become fused now? I can never keep the story straight about Tommy David Morrison, born January 2, 1969.

Young Tom

Young Tom

Neither can Wikipedia:

This article has multiple issues. Please help improve it or discuss these issues on the talk page.

Vs Big George

Vs Big George

Anyway, most boxing fans appreciate the heavyweight boxing career of the Tommy The Duke Morrison even if we never quite got the claimed lineage to John Wayne anymore than we did the claim of being Scottish American and half Indian. I guess being from Arkansas, Tommy Morrison can claim just about any and every genealogical link possible.

(Insert: He’s his own grandpa joke here.)

Naw, man, anymore than we can keep it straight whether Tommy Morrison ever tested positive or not for HIV. Man, life is a bitch living in the “testing era” where folks undergo millions of routine drug and HIV screening tests every year that have life and death career consequences once a positive sample turns up.

Funny that we almost never find out the public results of the screenings of Leaders of State and Corporate Bigwiggies, but then everyone knows their stuff don’t stink and have no need to abide by the regulations they hand down to us.

So we have to laugh in between crying as we jump through the regulatory hoops for the right to earn our daily bread.

Well, we the people have some wise words handed down to us through the ages to assist us in dealing with the ever present powers that rule over us. “When in Rome, do as Romans do” sounds like sage advice. When Cesar comes callin’, then give unto Cesar that is due him as Jesus counseled in earlier days.  

What is Morrison gonna do when they come for the post fight drug test, tell them that his admitted steroid use is all in the past and no longer relevant?

If he’s truly interested in fighting sans a certified HIV negative test result, there’s always an odd Indian casino to be found, or head on back down to Mexico again, or better yet, Columbia or Ecuador if lax standards of oversight floats his boat.

Why he suddenly got a hankering to fight in Montreal, claiming he was licensed in Canada which he is not, might be a mystery better told on Dr. Freud’s leather couch rather than wage a shoddily constructed battle against Canada regulations.

Ol' Tom

Ol' Tom

Or get a league of likely sponsors like the flat earthers allying with the moon landing and global warming deniers to sponsor him on the unlicensed circuit along side the dog & cock fights in the backwaters. No shortage of “fighters” loving the opportunity to notch the scalp of a 42 yr old Tommy Morrison operating at 20% of his prime level.

Or, as per Tommy: “We’ll take the dog and pony show somewhere else.”


Future Shock—What Caused the Ruination of Floyd Mayweather Jr?

~The immediate ring future of Floyd Mayweather Jr looks tenuous at best as the time to face the growing chorus of accusations against him comes due this January 24th, 2 weeks from now.

With early winter being somewhat of an off season for boxing, not much is going on in the boxing world to interfere with the attention that these court maneuverings will garner. Be interesting to see how many boxing scribes based in the Los Angeles/Phoenix/Las Vegas triangle attend the hearing, or is it a trial?

Is it confusion or an incredible stroke of coincidence that his Uncle Roger’s trial for felony assault is also scheduled for January 24th? I guess we’ll know soon enough.

It's a Mug's Game

It's a Mug's Game

Floyd Jr’s latest problems began with an ill advised moment stemming from a “confrontation” with his children and their mother, resulting in him being slapped with some eight felony and misdemeanor offenses.

Since then he was additionally investigated for allegedly running a former employee off the road, the same employee who was a victim of a Mayweather’s security personnel shooting rampage. Floyd Jr was also charged with assaulting a security guard and not abiding by the rules of the gated community that he lives in. It’s quite possible the homeowner’s association could force him out of the community as happens daily across America.

It seems trouble has found Mayweather and piled on big time with no end in sight yet.

Never say never, but at least for now his ring career seems over. It’s hard to believe he can slip the flurry of charges leveled against him given the number of probations and convictions he has already previously absorbed. His rap sheet has been as carefully crafted as his ring career.

It wasn’t supposed to end like this.

Floyd Jr had finally arrived at the hard earned fame and acclaim he had been seeking and had money raining at his feet as he and his supporters maintained he was the best fighter in boxing history. He seemingly had established the financial security of his family and was looking towards community leadership when he founded The Floyd Mayweather Jr Foundation:

About Us

Foresight, generosity and a desire to help underprivileged youth in Las Vegas, Nevada prompted boxing champion Floyd Mayweather to establish the foundation that today bears his name, The Floyd Mayweather Jr. Foundation (FMJF).

Floyd Mayweather has been referred to by major sports magazines as the “best boxer of this era.” Without a doubt, a six-time world champion with endless accolades from the Boxing Writers Association of America Fighter of the Year, Ring Magazine, BET, and the coveted ESPN Espy Award, Floyd Mayweather’s prominent status as a young achiever gives credence to the idea that anything is possible if “we are given the opportunity.”

In 2007, Floyd decided to put to use his star power by founding FMJF, a nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization dedicated to empower and promote the social development and advancement of struggling adults and adolescents.  The Floyd Mayweather Jr. Foundation’s focus is on: community health and wellness, economic growth and development and youth education.

…… Mayweather sees it as his charge to help impact the lives of troubled youth through education and empowerment, and has made it the mission of the FMJF to help change the mindsets of the leaders of tomorrow to realign their goals to head down a path that will afford them an opportunity to contribute to society. Mayweather has spent time at the Nevada Partnership for Homeless Youth (NPHY) to help homeless adolescents ages 16-21, begin their journey in the right direction. He also paid visits to the Shade Tree Women’s Shelter which houses up to 300 battered women and their children. During these visits needed items were donated and words of encouragement and inspiration were offered the women and children by Mayweather.

“I want these kids to see that they too are the leaders of tomorrow,” Mayweather said. “It takes hard work, determination and focus, but if they are ambitious, they can have opportunities to contribute to society and have a prosperous future.”

~Sounds great, so what are all those kids thinking now? What are Mayweather’s own kids thinking?

Has the perfect Mike Tyson/Tony Ayala/Ike Ibeabuchi moment arrived for Mayweather to be whisked away to the Big House for a few years?

Age 34 is just a month away, so he could end up in his late 30s, maybe even 40s or 50s before he completes his sentence. I guess it’s possible that he could fight while out on bond and appealing the likely sentence. I guess even probation is possible if his lawyers are good enough, and they have been good enough on his behalf to keep him out of prison thus far, but for how long?

So what caused this sudden rampage by Floyd Jr that looks to be the ruination of the best earning years of his life and perhaps his personal freedom as well?

Was it more money than he could count before throwing it all away?

It's a Money Game

It's a Money Game

Is there a genetic propensity towards criminal violence that was triggered by his Uncle Roger’s alleged assault on that young lady?

Peace & Love

Peace & Love

Or was it the accumulation of punches in consecutive bouts against Oscar De La Hoya, Ricky Hatton, Juan Manuel Marquez, and Shane Mosley that has caused some accumulated brain damage? He looked particularly shaky against the big shots of Mosley early in their fight before mounting a comeback.

No Free Spritzers

No Free Spritzers

Or is it a long career in boxing that sees him fighting from early grade school on, nearing 30 yrs of accumulated amateur and pro ring time?

Or is it a hostile reaction to being supplanted by Manny Pacquiao who has swept all the accolades these past 5 yrs by broad consensus?

Or is it Floyd Jr’s reluctance to make the biggest fight in his career, the biggest money fight in boxing history against Pacquiao?

I don’t have the answers and it could be that nobody ever will ever have more than their own theories, but after the Fight of the Millennium seemed to be a dead lock at the start of 2010 and then again at the midpoint of the year after all parties agreed to the terms, I just don’t see how Floyd Jr can manage to squeeze in this fight in 2011 given Manny’s burgeoning political career and narrowing windows of fighting availability.

It’s ye olde “squeezing a camel through a keyhole” dilemma.

It’s not for certain when Floyd Jr and his uncle Roger will be free enough to once more pursue their professions though I suppose a quickie type of fight could be cobbled together against a lesser fighter at some point this year. Undefeated Paul Spadafora has been mentioned in that vein.

The boxing landscape surely has been almost completely repainted over from when I penned my first article article examining the proposed Pacquiao/Mayweather P4P Superfight a year ago.

Whatever the future holds for Floyd Jr, one supposes it will also be additionally difficult for his family and likely to be the end of his massive entourage of pumped body guards and support staff.

Well, like Yogi once said, “It ain’t over ‘til it’s over,” so stay tuned for final results.

A Tribute to the “Champion”

What Champion is that you ask?

It just so happens that the order of “Revelation” goes Kirk Douglas, Rocky Marciano, Muhammad Ali, and Jack Dempsey  that was sparked by wondering if Kirk Douglas was still living?

There have been a plethora of boxing films made, too many poorly made and lost in ignominy, but the “Champion” refers to a 1949 release of an acclaimed adaptation of a Ring Lardner story starring Kirk Douglas that was one of the true fight film standouts.

“Champion” was  a breakout film for Douglas and his first ever starring role. It garnered a slew of Academy nominations and one award.

The Champ

The Champ

Douglas plays a young impoverished man abandoned as a boy, Midge Kelly. He’s recruited into a gritty boxing gym where he is transformed from clumsy beginnings into an all action slugger in the mold of a Rocky Graziano who was a very popular middleweight champ of the era. Midge seduces or is seduced by several women whom he abandons while stepping on everyone he meets as he fights his way up to the championship. It’s a dark black and white period film with buckets of blood, mafia, knockouts, and heartbreaks galore.

The finale finds Midge hallucinating, suffering the after effects of a vicious bout he has to come from behind to win, dying from a brain hemorrhage on his training table. It happens that dying in the ring or shortly thereafter was an all too frequent occurrence in the 1940s, the highest ring fatality decade of all time by a fair number. Going into the 50s, things didn’t improve much.

Here’s Midge being transformed from two left feet into a slugger. Guess the theme music:

Here he’s a ruthless King of his World:

Realistically, the actual boxing in “boxing movies” is terrible with only few exceptions. Hollywood uses boxing movies as their reenactment of the fight business that gave Hollywood a business model and new technology that Hollywood transformed into the megalomaniacal pyrotechnics special effects recycled action series that we see today.

Fight movies as done by Hollywood are sorta like Civil War reenactments as if play acting lends true understanding to the horror of spilled blood and guts of dead and wounded, boys mostly, more than all the other American wars combined. I guess they mean well and can be interesting now and again.

So imagine my surprise to find that cartoon boxing movie, Rocky, was chosen to be on the National Film Registry list, and not Champion. Kirk Douglas was one of the finest actors ever and star of maybe the most inspirational combat movie ever, Spartacus.

Kirk Douglas turns 95 years young this year, so Happy Birthday Kirk!



Love At First Strike

Love At First Strike

I’ve already written an open letter to the NFR asking why the 1897 heavyweight title fight between James Corbett and Bob Fitzsimmons was not chosen in their 2 decades long compilation of movies. It’s only the core history of film making the NFR are ignoring, but lest I digress any further, you can see my open letter here:

Any way, in checking the existent footage of Champion available on Youtube, naturally it’s easy to get distracted with suggestions of like-minded videos, and lo and behold, wouldn’t you know I got some great footage of Rocky Marciano and Muhammad Ali, two of the greatest champs ever, and then Jack Dempsey.

My inquiries are furthered with Kirk Douglas paying tribute to Rocky shortly after his untimely death by introducing some classic clips of Rock winning the title from Jersey Joe Walcott. Kirk recounts the funny story of when he first met Rocky when both were in training in an Los Angelas gym in 1949.

Then that led to the 1969-70 Murray Woroner Computer Super Fight that featured Rocky knocking out Ali in the final, but not many know an alternate ending was distributed in Europe where Ali stopped Rocky on cuts. I had never seen that footage, so what a thrill it was to finally see the alternate ending.

But then that led to a Howard Cosell interview of a 69 yr old Dempsey and Rocky along with a couple of boxing writers the following Saturday after Ali won his controversial rematch with Liston. Rocky was very astute in his observations but made it clear that he wasn’t in any position to actually know how hard the phantom punch landed. Dempsey was more direct, saying he didn’t bother to attend the fight because he thought some funny business was going on, and he agreed with Rocky that the punch seemed fairly weak overall.

So, I wanted to expand the appreciation of these great champs by including the clips.

Rocky explains how to beat Ali:

Basic Computer fight: These are actual filmed sessions between Ali and Rocky who trained hard to get into shape to break a long period of inactivity each had fallen into during this period. They became fast friends by the end.

Ali explains how to beat Rock:

Alternate ending: Angelo Dundee’s brother, Chris stops the bout!

Cosell interview of Dempsey and Rocky:

Cosell asked Walcott, the referee if he wanted to be on the show, but, naturally, he refused. His performance that infamous night was as poor as ever recorded out of a referee, maybe his last bout.

History as it was made, fantastic stuff and a Big Shout to all the gentlemen who put together these clips. Might want to check out their offerings at their main sites.

The Double Aughts—Devon Alexander vs Tim Bradley

Was gonna title this the Never Been Beatens when Devon Alexander, 21-0, 13 KO tangles with Tim Bradley, 27-0, 11 KO in a maybe/sorta unification bout.

Thing is, Alexander’s perfect record has been fudged some, and if Bradley wins, he wins Alexander’s WBC belt, but may lose his own WBO belt.

Or wait! Bradley is still miffed over the WBC stripping him a few years back, so claims he will refuse the belt, which probably means he didn’t pay the sanctioning fee, and why should he if they are just gonna strip him again? Who knows what belts he might end up with?

Go figure boxing shooting itself in the foot again since nobody else can.

Tim Bradley has been tearing up his division since 2007 when he defended youth title against the current IBF lightweight champ, Miguel Vasquez. The list of his scalps is impressive, including nicking two unbeatens in slick boxing Lamont Peterson and big slugger, Luis Abregu in his last two fights.

Desert Storm

Desert Storm


Of course, like any fighter within two divisions of Manny Pacquiao, that would be Bradley’s dream fight, but he’s not quite there as a big name yet in spite of an improving all action style that earned him consensus p4p status and #1 Ring ranking. The lack of acclaim with the broader public probably has more to do with a decline in boxing interest and lack of a promotional push since he has a very interesting style.

Devon Alexander has recently stepped up his competition in his last three bouts and he can also be a very exciting fighter with more power than Bradley. Not sure what his future plans are, but his promoter Don King probably schemes every day trying to line up bigger fighters for the star of his stable.

Thing is, the fight takes place in Pontiac, Michigan, Detroit territory, and not many fight fans left in the Detroit are up for fights of this caliber. The last fight out of Detroit I saw was a travesty of officiating, the Super Six Dirrell/Abraham bout, ruining what had been a great fight coming to a dramatic finish and endangering the health of Dirrell.

Don King is one of the promoters of this coming dustup and controversial fights with poor officiating are his long time stock in trade, so we shall see.

Alexander the Great

Alexander the Great

Devon Alexander had been looking like boxing’s future star in the making, but clever light hitting Andriy Kotelnik took him to school in his last fight with textbook precision boxing and didn’t allow him to pass, a real stain on officiating that Kotelnik fought near the perfect fight yet came up way short on the cards.

Well, one bad fight doesn’t make a fighter except that Bradley is on a big roll of momentous performances and has his goal in his sights, so it seems like Alexander could potentially be badly outclassed.

Bradley seems to be improving his boxing style in leaps and bounds, perfectly poised in his prime. Alexander is the puncher, so that’s where his practical hope is, because, being the young pup, age 23, he cannot match the longer run of excellence Bradley has been on.

Make no mistake, Alexander is a solid fighter, but Bradley is an acrobatic energizer bunny, all over here and there with lighting combos, very awkward to catch up to and defend against. Sometimes Bradley does get caught off balance in his physical transitions and can be floored, which may be enough to keep Alexander bolstered with extra points and light a fire under him and the spectators.

Additionally, the Alexander team must be surely bolstered by knowing that this is Bradley’s first significant bout against a lefty, a traditional problem for orthodox fighters in making ring adjustment after long ingrained reflexive habits against conventional right handed orthodox fighters.

Just hope the officiating is on par with the class of the fighters as both deserve better. They are putting their highly valued zeros on the line along with their belts, so it’d sure be nice if boxing and Detroit could provide a competently run, fair contest since the loser usually takes a big paycut in his next few fights.

Tim “Desert Storm” Bradley should be the favorite against live underdog “Alexander the Great,” but can the fight match the legendary war monikers of these fighters?

It’s a long cold wait until this, the first significant noncancelled bout of the New Year, January, 29th, hopefully a barnburner to warm up frozen Detroit if snow pack doesn’t collapse the Silverdome roof first.

Fingers crossed X X

New Year Opener–Beibut Shumenov vs Juergen Braehmer


See updated Fightnews link:


~Not much boxing going on during the Christmas holidays and New Years party preparations, but the weekend after the New Year sees a very interesting crossroads type of bout when the seasoned WBO lightheavy champion, Juergan Braehmer, goes against the emerging WBA champion, Beibut Shumenov.

Unfortunately, the bout takes place a bit off the radar at the Ice Mansion at Chimkent, Kazakhstan, Shumenov’s home country, so finding an outlet to view the fight may be a problem, but the fight has the potential to be a classic battle.

The Old Champ

The Old Champ

The 32 yr old Braehmer has something of a grizzled look about him from turning pro after a storied amateur career in 1999 and currently sports a 36-2, 29 KO record. He was promoted as a “Hundred Year Talent,” but unfortunately has taken the Mike Tyson approach to his talent, being in numerous well documented scrapes with the law, one requiring a 3 year hiatus in prison, so his career sorta spits and jerks along in between his legal headaches. His latest is an assault scrape that could see him behind bars yet again.

The 27 yr old Shumenov is also a prodigious talent, having won his WBA belt in his 10th bout with a series against the rugged Gabriel Campillo, but in contrast to the reprobate Braehmer, he is ambitiously expanding his interests with his own promotional company with plans for a robust future after he hangs up the gloves. Thus we may possibly look forward to a wave of talent coming out of Kazakhstan.

The New Champ

The New Champ

If Shumenov looks like a kid compared to Braehmer, it might be the spare 71 professional rounds that he has logged compared to the 172 rounds for Braehmer, but this kid can fight and he’s game to the core. It helps his lack of experience that he’s been in against tougher competition than Braehmer has of late, so everything looks prime for a really great battle between skilled boxers who don’t mind mixing in some brawling.

The beauty of this fight a contrast in styles with the lefty Braehmer utilizing a more upright European style whereas the righty Shumenov fights in a more flowing freestyle manner, melding athletic footwork  and body angles with a myriad punch selection. Since neither has realized the full flower of his talent, it follows that perhaps one or both will produce something beyond his previous boxing capacity which is where fights start to become compelling classics. 

They are both 5-1 in their last 6 bouts with the major difference being Shumenov only notching a single knockout whereas Braehmer has 4 knockouts, the power differential perhaps being another key to offset the home advantage Shumenov has.

I have to think the experienced Braehmer will be the oddsmakers’ favorite, but probably not by much.

Hard to predict how a fight like this plays out with each being the best the other has ever faced, but it should be a good, game fight with a lot of ebb and flow as both have their say, probably a war of attrition with one eventually falling out or both barely scraping to a disputed finish.

December 8th, check it out~