Boxing: Lawrence Clay-Bey, the reluctant Olympian

I read with interest Ron Borges piece on the forgotten heavyweights of the 1980’s; the famously lost generation of Witherspoon, Tubbs, Tucker, Thomas, Weaver and Tate in Boxing Monthly last week. It was fascinating copy and provided an effective summary of the period as well as interesting insight into how this potentially gilded era dissolved in a sea of wine, women and song.

Only Larry Holmes emerged from the years between Ali’s loss to Spinks in ’78 and the arrival of Mike Tyson in the mid-eighties with his potential fulfilled. Whenever I read about those out of shape and misguided contenders I’m always reminded of the otherwise forgotten Lawrence Clay-Bey.

A fighter of pedigree, Clay-Bey entered the pro-ranks long after that lost band of heavyweight brothers of course and his story is one of indifference toward prizefighting rather than the destructive pursuits of those who’s footsteps he followed, but the sense of the unfulfilled is a connecting thread between the two.

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Boxing: The inevitability of boxing

SavareseIn the present era of heavyweight mediocrity and the longevity it affords heavyweight veterans, there are certain fights which seem inevitable despite the respective retirements, health scares, defeats and divergent paths of the two combatants. The forthcoming clash between the 74 year old Evander Holyfield and 62 year old Lou Savarese is another telling example.

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