Though the Olympics have been over for several weeks, I
still find myself
harboring tremendous disappointment over the horrible showing by the U.S.
boxing team. This was the first time the U.S. team came away from an
Olympiad without a gold medal in boxing since 1948. Pitiful! Just
I think the entire U.S. amateur operation, from the coaches and trainers
right up to the stuff-shirt executives in Colorado Springs should be
overhauled. Then the U.S. can begin rebuilding and getting ready for the
2004 Olympics in Athens, Greece.
Every time I see him, I am more and
more impressed with big (6‘7"),
strong Wladimir Klitschko. In his latest effort, which basically got
the sports week of football games and Major League Baseball’s playoffs,
Klitschko avenged a loss by his brother, Vladimir, to Chris Byrd last April,
by virtually shutting out Byrd over 12 rounds in a battle for the WBO
heavyweight crown in Cologne, Germany. Klitschko, who dropped Byrd
ninth and again in the 11th round, won by scores of 120-106, 118-108 and
119-107. The victory upped Klitschko’s record to 35-1, including 32
knockouts. Byrd’s record drops to 31-2...Speaking of Vitali, he
comeback following surgery for the torn rotator cuff he suffered against Byrd
when he faces unbeaten Tino Hoffman in Hanover, Germany, on November 29.
Vitali is 27-1 (27 KO’s) while Hoffman has a perfect mark of 21-0.
those 21 victories contain 12 knockouts of ignominious, no-name fighters.
Hoffman is a good opponent for Vitali to make his ring return
against...Another little-known title-bout result saw WBA lightweight champion
Takanori Hatakeyama of Japan stopping countryman Hiroyuki Sakamoto in the
10th round of an absolutely sensational fight.
* * * * * *
* * *
Have you ever thought about boxing
and, well, just wondered about
different things? I have. Here are some of the things I find
wondering about right now. I wonder:
Why so many people are still excited
about a Mike Tyson fight, even
though it has been over 10 years since we’ve seen his very best.
If overblown, overrated boxing
journalist Mike Katz realizes just how
tired fight fans have become of him calling Oscar de la Hoya -- who has
fought a litany of top names -- "Chicken de la Hoya."
If Oscar de la Hoya will ever be able
to regain the magic he once had and
win a big fight impressively.
Who boxing’s next superstar will be.
If the "Alphabet Soup"
organizations will be around forever.
How likable Bob Lee, who, along with
his questionable IBF ratings,
appeared so guilty, yet was able to convince a jury not to convict him on
most of the charges the government went after him for.
How many more fights Larry Holmes will
continue to take before he hangs
up his gloves for good, as in Forever.
If boxing history will look at Mike
Tyson as one of the most wasted
talents the sport has ever seen.
If we’ll ever be able to watch a
major fight go down to the final bell,
then say of the close decision, "What a great fight. Those judges
on the nose with their verdicts."
If Roy Jones Jr. will continue to
fight long enough to one day be
regarded as the greatest fighter of all time.
If Lucia Rijker will ever get her just
due and fight a major fight
against a worthy female opponent.
If boxing will ever be able to lift
itself up from the gutter image
non-fight fans have of it.
When ESPN will restore Al Bernstein to
his analyst’s position, where he
so rightfully belongs.
If there will ever be a
fully-recognized, all-powerful Federal Commission.
* * * * * *
* * *
HEARD AROUND: That the USA Network is thinking of once again starting up
the "Tuesday Night Fights," which went off the air in August
1998...Don’t believe the talk about NBC-TV televising a pro boxing match any
time soon. Some boxing pundits have been stating that NBC will soon be
putting on a series of televised pro bouts. My sources say they won’t.
Sugar Shane Mosley ready to go in his
welterweight title defense in
Madison Square Garden on November 4 against tough Antonio Diaz. The
challenger brings with him 33 victories in 35 fights, including 22 knockouts.
Mosley is unbeaten in 35 outings with 32 knockouts.
On November 17, there is a fight in
Biloxi, Mississippi, which,
hopefully, we’ll all miss. It matches 51-year-old former heavyweight
Larry Holmes against 48-year-old WBA heavyweight champ Mike Weaver. For
this, Holmes is being paid $100,000. Will the penny-pinching
ex-heavyweight ruler ever retire? Not as long as there are promoters
willing to pay him $100,000 and more for a fight. I heard Holmes’
weight was up around 275 prior to him starting to train. My guess is
that he’ll step into the ring at
a "svelte" 245 pounds.
Gotta’ give promoter Ron "The
Attitude" Katz credit. While everyone else
seemingly gave up on Dana Rosenblatt a long time ago, "The Attitude"
with him. Recently, Rosenblatt shut out previously once-beaten Will
over 10 rounds. The victory upped Rosenblatt’s record to 37-1-1.
now try to put him into a big money match, possibly against WBA middleweight
king William Joppy.
The boxing world is getting more and
more excited about the upcoming
Felix Trinidad-Fernando Vargas bout in Las Vegas on December 2. It truly
the makings of a great, not-to-be-missed fight. Both are in heavy
and expect each of them to come into the ring in nothing less than 100%
POLICE BLOTTER: Tommy Cordova,
38, of Albuquerque, pleaded innocent to charges he made lewd comments to an
11-year-old girl...Tony Tubbs, 42, the former WBA heavyweight champ, was
arraigned for trafficking cocaine...Dingaan Thobela, the WBC’s super
middleweight champion, was arraigned for allegedly roughing up his
LIVING UP TO HIS NICKNAME:
Former contender Anthony "Two Gun" Fletcher is on Death Row in a
AND FINALLY: Bert R. Sugar is
writing yet another book about boxing,
this one to be entitled "Total Boxing." It will contain
the records of nearly 20,000 fighters, bios of over 100 of history’s
greatest fighters, along with their records, a breakdown of every title fight
in every division, every Olympic bout and much, much more The Sugar Man is
shooting to have the book on sale by Christmas, 2001.
WAIL! Contents Page