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Tag: Dan Hanley

Touching Gloves with… Alberto ‘Superfly’ Sandoval

by on Nov.29, 2014, under Boxing News

By Dan Hanley

Alberto Sandoval Boxer-Nov-#1

Although never a palatable division to the American fight fan, the flyweight division has produced many an exceptional and exciting fighter. But while we were turning our nose up at those south of 118, Latin America, Europe and Britain were savoring the duke-outs these mighty mites were producing. This all changed however, as the ’70s imbued the sport with the kind of flare that transcended fight town from the musty gyms into pop culture. And while the strains of Curtis Mayfield were echoing in the background, one of those little guys packing a wallop, charisma and one badass pompadour broke ranks and entered the mainstream fray.

DH: Alberto, where are you from?

AS: I was born in L.A. but we moved to Pomona, California when I was about 7 years old. Pomona’s where I grew up. (continue reading…)

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Touching Gloves with… Ray Lunny III

by on Jun.24, 2014, under Boxing News

By Dan Hanley

image001

Showing my age – while talking with Ray Lunny – I was reminded of a 1970s boxing-themed Old Milwaukee beer commercial that carried the tagline, ‘It’s a tough name to live up to…!’ Well, when young Ray was blasting his way into pug-city in the early ’70s, it was apparent that the ad could have been written about him. I’m sure there was a whole lot of fight mavens out there, whose musical chops were cut on Tommy Dorsey, who checked out this wunderkind with their own brand of pugilistic skepticism. I can just hear the slagging now. “Yeah, right, another Ray Lunny!” They would be in store for a revelation.

DH: Ray, tell me about yourself. Where are you from?

RL: Redwood City, California, which is just south of San Francisco. (continue reading…)

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Touching Gloves with…Gaspar Ortega

by on Apr.24, 2014, under Boxing News

By Dan Hanley

Indian Red #1

While my Dad was appeasing his voracious appetite for the sweet science during the mid – 60s, he was inadvertently jump-starting the same desire in his 8 year old son, who was peering curiously over his shoulder. And as that desire grew, I hung on every word he had to say about those leather-pushers whom I had missed. Perhaps it was in part to my overactive imagination, but it allowed me the privilege of seeing through my Pop’s eyes one particular welterweight. He was described as lean and strutting confidently in an Indian headdress, which created an aura of edge-of-your-seat-boxing. I could’ve listened forever to Pop’s stories of Gaspar ‘El Indio’ Ortega.

 DH: Gaspar, where in Mexico are you from?

GO: I was born in Mexicali, but when I was about a year old we moved to Tijuana.

 DH: What was life like growing up in a tough border town like TJ?

GO: Tijuana was a very busy town because of the visitors and tourists coming up from San Diego. And with 14 kids in our family there were a lot of mouths to feed, so we were always out working. It was expected of us. I shined shoes, I sold gum and I sold newspapers. Anything to make money.

DH: What got you interested in boxing?

GO: I had an older brother who was fighting. He was known as ‘El Torito’ Ortega. I went to see him fight and I liked it. Eventually we had a younger brother fighting as well. He was known as ‘Sapo’ Ortega. (continue reading…)

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A Review of ‘Mexican American Boxing in Los Angeles’

by on Apr.17, 2014, under Boxing News

By Dan Hanley

West Coast Boxing Cover

West coast boxing and its rich history has long been a favorite of mine. So, when Gene Aguilera completed his book, Mexican American Boxing In Los Angeles, I hunkered down as any fight fan would with a favored subject and immersed myself in text.

I was not disappointed. (continue reading…)

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Touching Gloves with…Adolph Pruitt

by on Mar.20, 2014, under Boxing News

By Dan Hanley

 

Adolph Pruitt (right) working the mitts at the Long Beach Boxing & Fitness Gym.

Adolph Pruitt (right) working the mitts at the Long Beach Boxing & Fitness Gym.

The old boxing adage, ‘He fought everyone!’, has been used and abused down pug-alley so often over the decades, it’s a wonder it’s publicist hasn’t been arrested for pandering. But despite its loss of luster, when one is eyeballing the professional ring record of Adolph Pruitt, the phrase somehow slips off the tongue quicker than a politician’s promise. Not surprisingly, Pruitt fought in an era without promotional contracts or Pay-per-view deals. And to get anywhere in his day, one had to toe the mark with the very best and had to be extraordinarily good at what they do. (continue reading…)

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