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Thread: GATO GONZALEZ' DISCUSSION THREAD

  1. #91
    kikibalt
    Guest

    Re: Old time Hoover Gym fighters

    Jimmy Heair was doing great under the managment of Jerry Moore and Henry Blouin , he lost his first fight after he left them, he was never the same under his new managment team, i don't remember who that was.

    Frank B.

  2. #92
    Rodolfo Gato Gonzalez
    Guest

    Old time Hoover Gym fighters

    To Everyone---
    I want to thank all of you for your information on these fighters.

    Dan---
    I didn't know Gil King lives in Hemet. That isn't very far from where I live. I'll give him a call one of these days and we can talk about the old days at the Hoover gym.

    I have a story to tell all of you---
    This is a about the first opponent that put me on the canvas for the first time in my boxing career. His name was Babe Lopez and I fought him on August 23 of 1962 in my home town of Guadalajara. I had already had 50 professional fights and had won 48 by knockout. This is when I first learned the dirty tricks of boxing. In the first round I barely touched him with a right hand punch to the chin. He acted as if he was about to fall down so I opened up and went after him to finish him off. Well, that was a mistake. He was faking it and he got me with a right hand to the head and down I went for the count of eight. He was a very tricky guy. That got me fired up. I really went after him and dropped him a few times. He was fighting back like crazy but I stopped him in the 8th round. He went down and the referee said no more and stopped the fight. They asked for a rematch and we both were back in the ring eight days later. If he thought he was going to trick me again, he was wrong. This time I got him with a strong left hook to the liver in the first round and that ended the fight. But the main point of my story is that every fighter you fight is different and you always learn something new.

    Another part to this story is that I was only paid 800 pesos for this fight which was about $100 in American money. I was the main event,over 25,000 people there. I had family bills to pay and didn't have any money left to buy a birthday present for my mother. I asked the promoter to lend me 20 pesos and was refused. So I made a decision to move to Tijuana hoping for a better future and two days later me and my family left without telling anybody. It made the headlines that Rodolfo Gonzalez had vanished.

    El Gato

  3. #93
    gregbeyer
    Guest

    Re: Old time Hoover Gym fighters

    great story champ....25,000 people? wow. what was the price of admission? sounds like you should have used your manager for a heavy bag. were the purses in t.j. any better?

    hoover st gym or 78th and hoover as we used to call it was a tough place. not only was it a tough gym it was in a tough spot......you had to be fairly tough or crazy just to get there.:smokin
    greg

  4. #94
    Rodolfo Gato Gonzalez
    Guest

    Lousy pay

    Greg---

    I'm not sure about the prices for the tickets at the boxing shows in Guadalajara, but I seem to remember that ringside was about $4.00 in American money and balcony was about $1.00. I made a mistake calculating the purse last night. In those days one dollar was equal to 12.5 pesos so actually I fought for $64.00. As for the purses in Tijuana, they were only slightly better---about 1000 pesos for a 10 round fight or $80.00.

    However, in Tijuana I found a manager and trained for only a few days, then could not continue training as my liver illness was getting much worse. This was in October of 1962. What I haven't told you before is that for the past two years up to this point I was suffering from a cancerous tumor and was on medication which only helped the pain. Nobody but my immediate family knew about this. I had to keep it a secret. I needed the money for my medication and to help support my mother and five brothers and a sister.(My father died when I was only 14 years old and never got to see me fight).
    My manager knew how much I needed the money and in February of 1963 told me of an opportunity to fight in Los Angeles for $800 on Feb. 15th. So I took the fight even though I knew my life was on the line if I should get hit. I hadn't trained for months and hadn't fought for 6 months. It's another story how I got into the United States but you all will just have to see my movie when it comes out. My opponent was Licho Guerrero and the fight was at the Olympic Auditorium under Mickey Davis Promotions. I lost a 10 round decision which was my first loss of my boxing career. What a disappointment and to make matters worse, I only got paid $27.00. My manager told me he had spent so much money to get me into the U.S. and that is all he could pay me.

    That was the end of my boxing career for a couple of years as my illness was continuing to get worse.

    El Gato

  5. #95
    gregbeyer
    Guest

    Re: Lousy pay

    gato,
    well you sure came back strong. i mostly followed your "second" career. obviously things started getting better for you when you signed with jackie mccoy.

    strange how things work out. you left guadalajara after getting only 64 dollars and ended up in LA were you made 27 dollars. do you remember what the purses were for cervantes, robertson, carmona and puddu? please don't tell me it was less than 27 dollars.
    greg

  6. #96
    Rodolfo Gato Gonzalez
    Guest

    Purses

    Greg---

    When it comes to money, I have a great memory. I sure do remember what I got paid for all of my fights.

    Cervantes was in Dec.,1972. The purse was $900 so my share was $600.

    Robertson was in Apr.,1972. The purse was $1100 so my share was $733.

    Carmona was in Nov. 1972. The purse was $10,000. My share was $6,666.

    Now that I became champion, the pay changed.

    Navarro was next in Mar., 1973. The purse was $45,000.
    My share was $30,000 plus now I got $10,000 more for training expenses.

    Puddu was in Oct., 1973. The purse was $65,000 and my share was $43,333 plus $10,000 training expenses.

    The Suzuki fight was in Apr., 1974 in Japan and the purse was the highest I ever got paid. The purse was $80,000 tax free. My share was $53,333 plus $15,000 for travel expenses. I fought him in a rematch one more time for a purse of $45,000 tax free, my share was $30,000 plus $15,000 travel expenses and that was the end of my boxing career.

    Not a whole lot of money compared to the title fights today.

    El Gato

  7. #97
    Dan Hanley
    Guest

    Re: Purses

    Rodolfo, you have an absolutely uncanny memory for your fights and circumstances. Comparing you monies then to today must make you wonder when you hear of Floyd Mayweather turning his nose up at a multi-million dollar deal and calling it 'slave wages'. How times have changed.

    Dan

  8. #98
    gregbeyer
    Guest

    Re: Purses

    when i think of pretty boy floyd i am reminded of an old saying..."any fool with a million dollars can be a millionaire".

    when i think that gato got less than 800 dollars for that fine fight against robertson it can be a little depressing. that was the nite i sat there in the crowd at the olympic watching rodolfo and realizing what a great fighter he was. no matter the pay champ...that was a million dollar show you put on that nite.

    and pretty boy floyd with all his cash and glitter cannot seem to purchase an ounce of the class that comes to gato so naturally.
    greg

  9. #99
    Dan Hanley
    Guest

    Jimmy Robertson

    Greg, your mention of Jimmy Robertson got me to thinking of a few things I've recently discovered in some old boxing mags that I came into about El Gato's era in the lightweight division. Several of them concerning Robertson.

    1) That Chango Carmona had come out of nowhere and was a no-hoper against Mando Ramos. Total myth. In fact, Stephan Randel who wrote for World/Int'l Boxing reported that many writers were picking Carmona to upset Ramos. And get this, this was reported after only the second Carrasco fight.

    2) Carmona pulled one of the ballsiest, if you pardon the expression, moves of all time. When the title fight with Ramos was signed what does Carmona do, he signs a tuneup fight with Jimmy Robertson. Gutsy but crazy. All he had to do was train for the date but takes on top ten Robertson. Remember Ramos was the absolute golden boy of boxing. He and Ali brought popstar status to the sport. This was akin to signing to fight Oscar DeLaHoya or Sugar Ray Leonard and taking a possible 'lose my shot at stardom' fight in between. Moreover Robertson was hopping mad about Carmona getting the title fight. He was stating that he should be getting the title fight because he could beat any Mexican in the world and he only had one bad night against Rodolfo Gonzalez. The article stated that the Olympic promotional team was really sweating. They had a chunk of money on the Ramos-Carmona fight and after 5 rounds Robertson was ahead on points. Apparently Robertson got off first, was fighting Carmona face-first pressuring him (much the way El Gato beat down Carmona) while Carmona worked the body. In the 6th Carmona went to the head and sliced open Robertson and the fight was stopped on cuts in 8. A real gamble.

    3) The magazines were screaming that the Buchanan-Duran fight should have been called a 'no-contest'. They claimed that Johnny LoBianco admitted aterwards (upon further review) that Buchanan had indeed been fouled and the fight should have been called as such and went to an immediate rematch as did the 1st Ramos-Carrasco fight. I once spoke to Buchanan who said "Duran was tired and I was ready to knock him out". I didn't say anything but that was ridiculous. Duran was still fighting like an animal, but I will give Buchanan this, he had probably his best round in the 13th before the foul. However, stopping Duran was not in his makeup.

    4) Don Majeski of BI reviewed the Duran-Robertson title fight and stated unequivocally that both Esteban DEJesus and Rodolfo Gonzalez could take Duran after his showing against Robertson. Jimmy took a thumping, but displayed great heart. Majeski was simply unimpressed with Duran and the meal he made out of the fight.

    5) The reports on the 2nd and 3rd Ramos-Carrasco were very enlightening. I really wasn't too aware of much on Carrasco. He had an impressive record but apparently he gave Ramos pure hell in those fights and was a much better fighter than alot of people gave him credit for. In fact the general concensus was that he was robbed in L.A. in the 2nd Ramos fight. As I mentioned on our late lamented thread, an interesting story, after El Gato took down Carmona he had a mandatory to fight Pedro Carrasco. Shortly into '73 with a guranteed shot at the title, Carrasco mysteriously retires. It came out that the Spanish press came to L.A. to scout the Gonzalez-Carmona fight because the winner would be fighting Carrasco. After the one sided beating the boys from Madrid hung around town, then shot down to Monterrey to watch Rodolfo's non-title against Jose Acosta. They then went home and reported to Pedro, "You won't last 3 rounds with Gonzalez!" Unbelieving, Carrasco consults Mando Ramos who became his close buddy after their 3 bouts and Mando reported in, "Pedro...he'll kill you!" Thus the retirement of Pedro Carrasco. Interesting stories from that era.

    Dan

  10. #100
    gregbeyer
    Guest

    Re: Jimmy Robertson

    dan,
    thats about the way i remember it. the carmona - ramos fight was in serious jeopardy for the first half of the carmona- robertson fight. i thought jimmy was winning handily and that he could have fought on despite the cut.....go figure.

    i was at the second ramos- carasco fight and true to his usual form mando simply was not in shape for that one. the thing that saved mando against pedro was that pedro was no where near as strong as mando and despite mando running out of steam in the championship rounds pedro did not hit hard enough to hurt him. referee dick young gave the decision to carasco whom he said gave mando a boxing lesson. he was of course over ruled by the ringside judges but the majority of the fans thought mando lost and so did mando who came back to the corner afer the 15th and said to jackie mccoy...."the guy beat me".

    with the strength difference between pedro and mando it was obvious to everybody that there was no way pedro could stay long with gato. gato was the strongest of all the afore mentioned lightweights. the second strongest may have been robertson and gato had no trouble handling him either. pedro is lucky that him and mando became drinking buddies in spain otherwise there would have been no one to warn pedro about rodolfo.
    greg

  11. #101
    Rodolfo Gato Gonzalez
    Guest

    News to me/Fights in Lancaster

    Dan and Greg---

    I learned new information reading your posts. I didn't know about all the commotion that was going on during this period of my boxing career. I never saw any of articles in these magazines. The only thing I knew was that Jacky McCoy told me that Pedro Carrasco didn't want to fight anymore and that he was going to retire. He never gave me a reason why.

    Yesterday was an adventure but worth the trip. Barbara and I drove up to Lancaster and used Mapquest as our guide. It took us 3 and a half hours and several stops for clarification of directions, navigating several freeways, turns and roads, going on a one lane road through the high desert.

    We finally found the boxing show arena in Lancaster which was put on by Monte Estrada Promotions. My friend, Hervi Estrada is the matchmaker and he had a pretty good boxing card. The main event was for the WBO super feather weight championship--12 rounds. Juan Ruiz from Mexico fought Priest "Tiger" Smalls from San Diego. Ruiz won by unanimous decision. It wasn't the greatest fight. The best fight of the night was the fighter, Angel Flores from Las Vegas vs Jesus Rivas from Santa Clarita, CA. Angel has great potential to make it to the top. I saw him in his first fight and liked his style. I met his dad and we have been communicating ever since. He would like to have me help promote his son. Angel's trainer used to be my sparring partner. What a small world. Anyway, they had a number of celebrity fighters that they called up into the ring including Bobby Chacon and Maromero Paez. They saved me for last and what a great introduction the announcer gave me. He gave not only my boxing record but also told my record of holding the #1 spot for consecutive knockouts in boxing history and #4 for all the divisions. When I went into the ring everybody was giving me hugs and when I got down from the ring I was surrounded with people asking for autographs and posing for pictures.

    Coming home was easy doing it our way. We took a freeway to LA and then down I 5 back home and made it in 2 and a half hours. Mapquest sure was way off on this one.

    El Gato

  12. #102
    Rodolfo Gato Gonzalez
    Guest

    Old Spaghetti Factory in Hollywood

    Hello everyone---

    Another good time! Tuesday we joined a great group of boxers for lunch, mostly the oldies, at the Old Spaghetti Factory in Hollywood. Barbara and I sat at the same table with the "Golden Boy", Art Aragon. He's 78 yrs. old now. Mando Ramos and Sylvia were at the next table. Mando had back surgery a couple of days earlier but he was in pretty good shape. It happened to be his birthday. He just turned 57. Everybody sang Happy Birthday to all those who had a birthday in November. They included me too, even though mine isn't until Dec.16. Bobby Chacon was also included in the birthday group. They had a big cake for everybody. It was fun. Raul Rojas, Javier Muniz, Gwen Adair (referee) who was just inducted into the Hall of Fame, J.J. Johnson, Carlos Baeza (photographer) and a bunch of others were there too. It is good to get together in smaller groups like this. You get to talk to each other on a different level and get to know each other better. We talked about the good old days but also talked about where everybody lives now and what they are doing. J.J. Johnson has just finished a book on Chicago Boxing that he is going to mail to me. I'm looking forward to reading it and learning more about the Chicago boxing days.

    El Gato

  13. #103
    gregbeyer
    Guest

    Re: Old Spaghetti Factory in Hollywood

    gato,
    how is raul rojas? from the stories i have heard i am surprised he was in attendance.

    when i was a kid in san pedro raul rojas was the hero of the town. i know he had some rough days and once i even heard he had died. sounds like he may have regained some of his health.if its true thats good to hear.
    greg

  14. #104
    Rodolfo Gato Gonzalez
    Guest

    Raul Rojas

    Greg,

    Raul doesn't look too healthy. He is thin and walks quite slow. He had a companion with him who assists him. He doesn't drive anymore and the man drives him where ever he wants to go. He doesn't work anymore either. He was very quiet and didn't talk to many people. He didn't know who I was. I think he is only a couple of years older than I am. It is sad to see him like that. I remember when I sparred with him one time and he was in really good shape. He was a very strong featherweight. We fought on the same card in San Antonio, Texas back in 1967.

    Art Aragon also has a lady who assists him. She is with him every day, but she goes home at night. His short term memory is fading. I was sitting next to him and he asked me my name 3 times. He is still lively and likes to talk.

    Thank God, I am very blessed to be in great shape.

    El Gato

  15. #105
    Dan1213
    Guest

    Re: J.J. Johnston's Book

    Gato,

    JJ's book (co-authored with Sean Curtin) is terrific. I highly recommend it.
    I added a link.

    www.ibroresearch.com/Book...s_pg05.htm

  16. #106
    gregbeyer
    Guest

    Re: raul rojas

    gato,
    thanks for the info on raul. sorry to hear he is not doing that well. raul was born in nov. of 1941.
    greg

  17. #107
    gregbeyer
    Guest

    Re: happy thanksgiving

    gato,
    i wanted to make sure to wish barbara and yourself a happy thanksgiving. hope you have a nice day with family and friends. thank heaven nobody has to make weight today
    :b
    greg

  18. #108
    Flatnose
    Guest

    A swarmer

    Champ, hope ya didn't stuff yourself too much, my man, theres another holiday comin' up. Just curious if you saw the Hatton fight last night and to ask you how you would fight a cat who was a swarmer? Also a style like Pryor comes to mind. The type of fighter who won't give you an inch to breath. Did you ever fight a style like that and what's the key? Thanks champ.

    Flatnose

  19. #109
    Rodolfo Gato Gonzalez
    Guest

    Book/Raul/Thanksgiving/Hatton

    Dan1213---

    Thanks for posting on my thread. JJ's book looks very interesting and I'm sure others want to read it too. It was nice of you to post the link.

    Greg---

    I didn't know Raul was born in 1941. That makes him 4 years older than me. I hope his life improves. Thanks for the Thanksgiving good wishes. Barbara and I had a 6 day vacation at my son's home in Las Vegas. We toured the town and visited a couple of really nice casinos. Also met friends for dinner one night and had a very nice Thanksgiving Day dinner at home with family and friends. The trip home was long---bumper to bumper for miles and miles. We stopped several times to break it up. It took about eleven hours for a trip that usually takes no more than six.

    Flatnose---

    So nice to hear from you again. No, I didn't see the Hatton fight however, I fought several fighters with that type of style. The first one I fought was Jose Luis Castillo. This was my 36th fight and I had won my first 35 by knockout. This one was different. This guy kept coming at me swarming with punches from every direction. I was having a hard time defending myself and I couldn't set him up for my liver punch or for any combinations. I finally beat him in a 10 round decision. He was not happy and asked me for a rematch. I fought him 2 weeks later in Guadalajara and this time I knew how to handle him and counter punched him, fighting him in and out until I knocked him out with my liver punch in the third round. I fought two other fighters that swarmed me.One i fought in Mazatlan by the name of Paco Gomez and beat him in a ten round decision. The other one was Ramon Cabiedes who I fought in Atotonilco, Mexico. I knocked him out in the 9th round but had a hard time with both of these fighters because of their wild style. The safest way to fight them for me was to fight them in and out--counter punching them.

    Hope all of you had a wonderful Thanksgiving and Greg you are right about not having to make the weight. I would be disqualified.

    El Gato

  20. #110
    Dan Hanley
    Guest

    Duran & Whitaker

    Rodolfo, just saw an interview with Roberto Duran (man, is he huge). I guess he's slowly getting into promoting. The interviewer was baiting him about how he would do against Pernell Whitaker and Duran just laughed it off. I tend to feel the same way. I was just never a fan of Whitaker's style and I'm one who can appreciate pure boxing. I often wondered how you would deal with that style. What made him effective was how he would offer angles rather than just slip an duck. That's why he was effective against Chavez. Chavez, despite his talents, was ingrained with that 'typical' Mexican style. He would chase, setup the punch and pull the trigger. Only against Whitaker he chased, setup the punch and Whitaker was gone. And Chavez could not alter his style to accomodate. He had no plan 'B'. You have mentioned before how you would alter your style depending on who was in front of you. How would you and Jackie map out the solution to Whitaker?

    Dan

  21. #111
    Rodolfo Gato Gonzalez
    Guest

    Whittiker

    Dan,

    That's an easy one---
    I would just step on his toes and punch him at the same time and down he would go for a knock down. I did that with only dirty fighters that didn't fight clean. Miraculously, the referee's never caught it. Seriously speaking, to fight a fighter like Whittiker with his speed and style, in my opinion, the only way to stop him would be to set him up for the liver shot. The shot would either knock him out or slow him down for the remaining rounds. I would even take some of his punches so I could set him up. I don't believe he ever experienced a liver shot during his career.

    El Gato

  22. #112
    gregbeyer
    Guest

    Re puddu

    champ,

    i just watched a dvd of your fight with antonio puddu. i was in the crowd that nite and remember it well. it seemed after the knockdown in round two that antonio was reluctant to engage you. from viewing the dvd and seeing your reactions going back to the corner after a couple of the rounds you seemed upset. were you indeed upset with antonio for not putting up a better fight against you?
    greg

  23. #113
    Rodolfo Gato Gonzalez
    Guest

    Puddu fight

    Greg---

    I also remember that night very well. What happened is that I was sick with a high fever that night . Actually it started 5 days earlier that week--it was on and off, sometimes during the day I felt normal then at night the fever would flare up. Jacky McCoy knew about it but he did not want to cancel the fight. Before the fight I was in my dressing room and felt so hot and a bit dizzy so Jacky went to find the doctor in the building and brought him to my dressing room. He gave me a shot to bring down the fever and 20 minutes later I was in the ring. Thank God for the knockdown in the 2nd round. That scared Puddu and he ran for the rest of the fight. What a blessing because I had no strength to hit him hard. I was just faking the whole fight. To answer your question of why I looked disappointed is that I had opportunities to finish him off but I just didn't have the strength to do it. To be honest with you, if Puddu would have thrown more punches at me he easily could have finished me. Earlier on my thread I discribed the "after the fight party" he had set up. He was so sure he was going to win and had all the dignitaries from Italy there. Bill O'Neill was at the party and told me all about it this past year. If only Puddu had known my physical condition his celebration might have had a different outcome.

    El Gato

  24. #114
    gregbeyer
    Guest

    Re: Puddu fight

    gato,
    great story. i do remember you talking about that before. i also thought that if puddu had come in he would have been dropped again as he appeared afraid to be countered.
    greg

  25. #115
    gregbeyer
    Guest

    happy 60th

    hey champ,
    let me be the first on your thread to wish you a happy birthday and to also thank you for your participation on this board. you are a valued part of the CBZ. all the best.
    greg

  26. #116
    kikibalt
    Guest

    Re: happy 60th

    Rodolfo
    Happy B-Day to you.
    I too just had a B-Day on Dec.13

    Frank B.

  27. #117
    GorDoom
    Guest

    Re: happy 60th

    Felis cumpleanos, campeon! All the best Gato.

    GorDoom

  28. #118
    gregbeyer
    Guest

    Re: happy 60th

    hey frank...happy birthday to you too.
    greg

  29. #119
    wildhawke11
    Guest

    Happy Birthday OLD BOY :-)

    Champ
    Many Happy Returns Of The Day OLD TIMER

    Frank
    Please let me wish you even if i am a little late a
    Happy Birthday.

  30. #120
    BDeskins
    Guest

    Re: Happy Birthday OLD BOY :-)

    Champ...Happy birthday...you have been a big inspiration to me both as a champion boxer, but even more so as a wonderful human being. Happy 60.

    Sincerely,
    Barry Deskins

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