Few fighters unify boxing fans like Matthew Barney. Before I explain why, it’s firstly important to point out that I instinctively recoil from sharing the thinking of the masses. I like holding a contrary view. Sometimes it sets you aside as a voice of wisdom other times it is a compulsion that leads you to suggest Clifford Etienne could stop Mike Tyson late. So as a state of mind or ethos, it is a flawed position. The majority cannot always be wrong is the lesson these experiences teach me. However, on the subject of Matthew Barney I think they are. Because, you see, boxing fans simply don’t like Matthew Barney.
Why? Well if you’ve stumbled across this blog from your high security facility – most of my readers, well both of them actually fall into that category – you’re clearly an established boxing fan and if you are you will already have formed an opinion on the slippery Super-Middle, sometimes Light-Heavyweight. So need I explain? For the record, and in case a third reader has stumbled across this blog searching for Flintstones memorabilia or Farm Storage providers I’ll outline the 32 year old’s crimes.
Barney doesn’t have a fan pleasing style. He’s awkward, fights off the back foot, has a slippery approach to exchanges and doesn’t possess knockout power. I can’t argue with any of that but to me there is an inherent beauty in his ugliness. He finds victories despite this lack of appeal, is willing to engage any fighter across two weight divisions and often in their own backyard. Compelling attributes in these days of pampered prospects and unwilling belt holders – can everyone stop calling them champions please.
Further evidence of this willing attitude is provide by his forthcoming clash with hotly touted Super Middleweight Lucian Bute at short-notice in the Romanian born contender’s adopted hometown of Montreal. For reference, Bute is 6ft 2 and a known puncher. Barney never has it easy.
Speaking to the thisishampshire.net website Barney was typically perceptive in his comments:
“He has all of the advantages,” said Barney. “I have taken this fight at short notice, he has fought more regularly than me in the last year or two and I have to travel to Canada for the fight but I have always produced my best against the better opponents.
“One thing for sure is that he won’t ever have fought anyone like me before – because there isn’t anyone like me.”
I don’t know why I like these unorthodox and unpopular fighters but I genuinely hope Barney can spring the surprise, he’s been harshly treated and deserves some good fortune.
Read the full article HERE