It may surprise some readers to learn Bobby Gunn causes the biggest spike in readership whenever I cobble (do you see what I did there) together a news or opinion piece on the plucky prizefighter. Avoyd Mayweather holds nothing on the scrapper once spectacularly referred to as “the most ferocious fighter since Jack Dempsey” ahead of a one round mauling at the fists of Enzo Maccarinelli. He also fought Tomasz Adamek for another portion of the Cruiserweight title so his notoriety isn’t entirely hollow. I ducked any coverage of his bare-knuckle contests on principle but I must confess to a curious interest in his next bout. A clash with James Toney. Yes, the real one. Continue reading “Boxing: Bobby Gunn and James Toney in a room. Never going to be tea and biscuits.”
There was a time recently when boxing fans were entitled to wonder if a next generation of top-level fighters were ever going to emerge. The class of the 90’s hung on. Reflecting the ageing demographic tag which was readily hung on the sport as it struggled for relevance among the emergence of UFC and amid the strain of nefarious sanctioning bodies who tore it apart from within. Maybe, almost a decade too late, the new class is here. I hope a rejuvenated Kelly Pavlik is among them. Continue reading “Holding out for a hero, is a new dawn really here?”
I’m not usually one to advocate these fan-led Radio shows, too often they’re so poorly conceived, so uncomfortably amateurish that any meaningful content is lost amongst the cringing I’m doing. However, while still a little rough around the edges, the OntheGrindRadio.com crew are smoothing out the wrinkles and in their weekly show have attracted some interesting voices, Shannon Briggs last week, James Toney this week. Tune in and try it. Continue reading “Give OntheGrindRadio.com a whirl; James Toney live on the show this Sunday”
They say, whoever they are, that in matters of the heart the chase is all part of the thrill. I’m not sure whether the notion could be extended to finding 250-pound men with a glint in their eye, I suppose it depends on your proclivities. However, David Haye’s quest to find a “top-10” heavyweight contender to knockout, as he assumes he will, in November has proven about as easy as platting fog. It began with rumours of Hasim Rahman or Andrew Golota but is now much further down the heavyweight barrel. Continue reading “Save the last dance for me; Haye’s search for a partner drifts on”
The hunt for a top-10 opponent, as demanded by his contract with British broadcaster Setanta, is proving harder than expected for aspiring puncher, promoter and profiteer David Haye. As reported previously, a ‘who was’ of heavyweight contenders has been name-checked, from Hasim Rahman, James Toney, Andrew Golota and Oleg Maskaev to speculative challenges from Matt Skelton, Tony Thompson, Eddie Chambers and 75 year-old Ray Mercer. A new name has been added to the roster of potential foes; Kevin Johnson. According to Dan Rafael at ESPN at least. Continue reading “Dan Rafael slips Haye a low-blow; Johnson lands Haye shot?”
Chinese proverb say “don’t try to be lumberjack in desert”. Okay, to my knowledge there is no such proverb but it would apply neatly to David Haye’s current quest to find a big, tall meaningful opponent for his next heavyweight fight. Today’s press conference, to announce the date, venue and opponent for his long awaited second appearance at the weight has been pushed back a fortnight simply because he cannot get the signature of a preferred opponent on the contract. Continue reading “Haye searching for a tree to fell in division of deadwood”
Three years on from the first publication of this article on thesweetscience.com, its hard to comprehend that the career of Evander Holyfield should still be an active topic. He had been consigned to the scrap heap innumerable times already by 2005 and yet still steadfastly refused to yield to the dieing of the light. At the time of release the first formal steps to forcible retire the proud warrior had been taken, they proved pointless and rightfully so.
For all the criticism I aim at the likes of Bernard Hopkins, Roy Jones and Evander Holyfield for their unwillingness to accept the passing of time and talent and for all the disappointment I feel hearing Marco Antonio Barrera and Chris Byrd are set to return to action it conversely provides great comfort to learn plucky veteran Manuel Medina is still performing close to his best well into his thirties. James Toney and Vitali Klitschko may garner more attention but neither has contested the number of world-titles the 37 year old Mexican has.
On paper, Carl Froch versus former WBC World Champion Robin Reid is a terrific battle, positioning the veteran Runcorn man as the final, and arguably, superfluous gatekeeper to the British champion’s ascent to the international scene. In reality, Froch doesn’t need the fight to further substantiate his credibility on the domestic scene, but a knee operation has encouraged caution, a pause for breath before capitalising on his high rankings with every sanctioning body.
I penned this article toward the end of 2004 for thesweetscience.com, intended to be the first to provide obituary on the careers of three of the modern era’s finest fighters it now seems premature as only Iron Mike has listened to his body and given up trying to fool opponents and fans that he can still reclaim his unfulfilled youth and potential.
The return of giant Ukrainian Vitaly Klitschko caused something of a rumpus in boxing circles this week, fresh from Samuel Peter’s emergence as a contender from the ranks of pretenders it would seem the WBC, the over-valued leader of the sanctioning bodies and one of the sport’s biggest problems, reinstated the former champion as mandatory challenger to Oleg Maskaev. Himself of Soviet birth and clearly, at the age of 75, looking for the biggest pay-day his belated ascension to the heavyweight throne can garner him. Continue reading “Vital or A Knee Jerk? The Return of Big Brother”