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Articles of 2007

(FREE VIEWING) Nevada Fight Card Mired with Unpopular Judging

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The fights were good, but oh that judging.

Mexico City’s Juan Manuel Marquez looked like the loser after his 12-round slugfest with Marco Antonio Barrera, but his smile told a different story after the fight on Saturday night.

“I’m sincerely happy to show what Mexican boxing is all about,” said Marquez at the post fight press conference held in the underbelly of the Mandalay Events Center.

Marquez won a unanimous decision over Barrera and took the WBC junior lightweight title. Barrera felt the judging was bad and that was an extremely accurate summation for the entire night.

With more than 8,000 people paying upwards of $300 for a seat, and thousands of television viewers purchasing the pay-per-view fight at close to $50 a pop, the boxing judges at Las Vegas left many bewildered by the score totals in the three main fights.

In boxing one of the toughest ordeals is judging a fight. But usually it comes down to a one or two point difference of opinion. Last Saturday, three fights were lop-sided scores though fans saw three close battles.

Viewers watching Marquez and Barrera’s furious junior lightweight battle felt it was a nip and tuck 12 rounds. But at the end of the fight all three judges scored it big for Marquez. One judge only gave Barrera two rounds though Compubox totals showed Barrera had an edge in total punches landed 262 to 255 connections.

There’s no big argument that Marquez won the fight, but to give Barrera two or three rounds was laughable.

In the match between WBO junior featherweight titleholder Daniel Ponce de Leon and challenger Gerry Penalosa, both presented differing styles. The Filipino Penalosa boxed and moved while countering with pot shots that rocked Ponce de Leon’s head back repeatedly. The stronger Ponce de Leon resorted to volume punching and concentrated on ringing body shots. Neither fighter was knocked down or seemed seriously hurt. At the end of a dozen frames, all three judges scored it overwhelmingly for Ponce de Leon. One judge gave every single round to Ponce de Leon. Press row saw it much closer.

The junior welterweight contest between Demetrius Hopkins and Steve Forbes for the USBA title was no less puzzling.

With the young Hopkins using his exuberance and size to offset Forbes experience, it seemed that youth would prevail easily. Forbes was clearly the smaller man. But it didn’t work out that way.

Hopkins had problems fighting inside with Forbes who knows how to fight at close proximity. His wars with Alejandro “Cobrita” Gonzalez, David Santos and Nick Acevedo proved his skill level. This was Hopkins first test with a former world champion. And though I had no problem with the final judgment in his favor, it was the margin that the judges gave in his favor. One judge gave Forbes two rounds and the other two judges gave him three rounds. The fans in the arena felt Forbes won the fight and applauded mightily when he jumped on the first strand of the ropes on each corner.

So what’s wrong with the judging?

“Those judges are too old,” said Nicolas Cervetti, 33, who attended the fight card and was upset with the judging. “I don’t think they can see what’s going on.”

Another fight fan believes politics had something to do with the final judge’s tallies.

“Whoever was the favored fighter won the fight,” said Randy Cisneros, 51, who regularly attends big boxing cards in Las Vegas and lives in Barstow. “These judges were terrible. They should be fired.”

Another fan in attendance said the action was excellent but the judging for the three televised bouts was sub par.

“Maybe they need new judges?” asked Lorenzo Fabela, 31.

One expert from California said maybe the Nevada judges should be tested regularly to see if they’re capable of seeing the action.

It takes reflexes from the eye to digest what’s going on inside the ring in a fast-paced all-action slugfest. It also takes that same eye reaction to discriminate which punches are landing and those being blocked.

Just because one fighter is throwing a boatload of punches does not mean it’s that fighter’s fight. Nor does the aggressor win every fight. In the end it’s always who actually lands punches that should be the winner. And the favorite in the fight should not receive carte blanche in a fight simply because it’s expected.

The scoring system needs to be changed and needs to reflect accuracy not popularity or merely aggressiveness.

One more thing, consistently bad judging should not be rewarded. If the scores are ridiculous then its time to replace that judge. Mere suspension is not enough.

Last and not least, why is someone like Jay Nady refereeing the little guys. No other referee misses more body shots than Nady. He’s simply too tall to detect which punches are below the belt and those that are legal. His miss of the knockdown punch and subsequent slow reaction to stop Barrera from firing another blow was another example of his inability to referee smaller weight classes.

Any referee taller than 6-feet should not referee smaller weights. The little guys fire a lot of punches and attack the body. Referees like Nady and Eddie Cotton in the east coast are always miss the body shots. They’re too tall. From up there everything must look low to them. And they’re too slow to react to the quickness of the small guys. It’s like a basketball center trying to defend a point guard.

Rhonda Luna fights for title

After more than a year away from professional boxing, Rhonda Luna returned to the sport and she’s not taking any tune up fights.

Luna faces IFBA featherweight world champion Kelsey Jeffries (36-9-1) for the world title on Thursday March 22, at the Isleta Casino in Albuquerque, New Mexico. Both boxers are from California. The fights will be televised by Fox Sports Net.

“It makes perfect sense,” said Luna (12-0-1) about fighting world champion Jeffries. “It’s something I was anticipating since I began in the sport.”

Last month Luna, 28, a former high school English teacher at Bishop Amat High, accepted a challenge with the always-tough Sosadea Razo and the pair fired away with abandon. The crowd erupted into cheers and tossed money into the ring in appreciation.

Luna never disappoints.

But boxing proved disappointing to the former University of California at Santa Barbara softball star. After toiling countless hours perfecting her craft under the tutelage of Victor Valenzuela, the problems finding a sponsor and the lack of support from some boxing fans slowed her enthusiasm for the sport.

“It feels like nine out of 10 people go grab a beer or something to eat when the female fight is on,” said Luna, who primarily trains at the Azusa Boxing Club and the Duarte Boxing Club. “I felt I gave the sport a lot more than it was giving me.”

Especially damaging to her motivation was fighting to a draw against Cindy Serrano more than a year ago in New York.

“There’s no doubt I won that fight,” Luna says of the fight that took place in Verona, New York. “Here I’ve given this sport my heart and soul and for that to happen in New York, it was just heartbreaking.”

So Luna packed her bags and headed for graduate school in San Francisco to study Educational Psychology. While there, she looked for a gym to keep in top physical condition and found a local boxing club. Slowly she began to feel the pangs of boxing pulling her back.

After spending a year away from boxing, she feels different now.

“This time I know I’m not in the sport to give me something back. It is a part of what I am and what I love to do,” says Luna.

Her brother Jacob Luna, an attorney in Riverside, could feel the enthusiasm once again.

“First thing I said was what do you want me to do?” Jacob Luna said. “So she comes down every weekend from San Francisco to train.”

Now she faces the equally fiery Jeffries, a human tornado of punches who loves the sport as much as Luna.

“Kelsey has been a pro since I was an amateur,” Luna says. “I can’t say what’s going to happen until after the fight, but on paper this is going to be the toughest fight of my career.”

Celestino Caballero victory

Panama’s Celestino Caballero’s knockout victory of Mexico’s Ricardo Castillo proved he might be too good for most 122-pound junior featherweights.

He already had a crack at Ponce de Leon and pretty much dominated in that fight. Only WBC champion Rafael Marquez and former titleholder Israel Vazquez might give him problems.

Another guy who’s too tough for his weight division is Australia’s Vic Darchinyan. Maybe he should jump to the junior featherweight division for a shot at Caballero. He’s already cleaned out the flyweight division. The junior bantamweights might have some competition with Martin Castillo, Jorge Arce and Cristian Mijares. But my feeling is Darchinyan has too much muscle for anyone less than 118 pounds.

A Caballero-Darchinyan battle might be interesting.

Fights on television

Thurs. Fox Sports Net, 8 p.m., Kelsey Jeffries (36-9-1) vs. Rhonda Luna (12-0-1).

Fri. ESPN2, 6 p.m., Delvin Rodriguez (20-1-1) vs. Jesse Feliciano (14-5-3).

Sat. HBO, 9:45 p.m., Mikkel Kessler (38-0) vs. Librado Andrade (24-0); also the replay of Juan Manuel Marquez vs. Marco Antonio Barrera.

Dear readers, all articles in this web site are once again free to view. As of Sunday the stories posted on this site will be free to anyone.

Articles of 2007

St-Pierre, Liddell, Clementi Win @ UFC 79

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LAS VEGAS-A reinvented Georges St. Pierre proved he’s ready for the true Ultimate Fighting Championship welterweight title with a dominating win over Matt Hughes and Chuck Liddell returned to the win column in his big showdown on Saturday.

St. Pierre took the final chapter in the trilogy with Hughes and now is the UFC interim champion at the 170-pound division.

Hughes just shook his head after tapping out before a sold out audience at the Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino in Las Vegas. It was called “Nemesis” and St. Pierre conquered his nemesis.

“Georges is just a better fighter,” said Hughes (43-6) who beat St. Pierre several years ago, but lost two years ago in a title match. “I just don’t know how much longer I got.”

St. Pierre (15-2) found Hughes using a left-handed stance to change up his attack, but the Canadian quickly adapted and used his quickness, skills and raw strength to take Hughes to the ground.

“If it wasn’t for my wrestling training I wouldn’t have been able to adjust,” said St. Pierre who had been preparing to represent Canada’s Olympic wrestling team.

Inside the Octagon the Canadian was never in danger. In fact, Hughes was the fighter teetering for the entire fight that ended in 4:54 of the second round.

It wasn’t supposed to be that way.

Hughes, known for his wrestling skills, just couldn’t solve St. Pierre’s quickness. Every move the Illinois fighter attempted was squashed.

St. Pierre is now promised a fight against the current UFC welterweight champion Matt Serra, who pulled out of the fight with Hughes because of injury.

“If I don’t get my belt back, I’m going to consider myself champion,” said St. Pierre filled in for Serra with less than a month of training.

After dominating the first round on top of Hughes, the second round was even worse as St. Pierre landed elbows and fists. Though the Illinois fighter escaped from underneath, he was quickly thrown down. Within seconds St. Pierre grabbed Hughes left arm and turned it into an inescapable arm bar.

Hughes screamed out: “I tap!”

St. Pierre now awaits Serra to recover from his back injury.

The semi-main event was no less intense.

The light heavyweight showdown between Chuck “The Iceman” Liddell and Brazil’s Wanderlei “The Axe Murderer” Silva was a three-round punch out between two famous sluggers. In the end Liddell’s sharper punches in the first and third round decided the fight despite a knockdown in the second scored by Silva.

Silva (31-8-1) dominated the second round for four minutes and 30 seconds but Liddell rallied and took the Brazilian to the ground. Two judges were somehow impressed by Liddell’s last 30 seconds and inexplicably gave him that round.

With both fighters huffing and puffing, and Silva with a bad cut over his right eye, Liddell seemed the stronger puncher and landed a back-handed fist and a right hand that stunned the former Pride FC fighter Silva. But he survived the round.

The judges scored it 29-28, 30-27 twice for Liddell who won his first bout after back-to-back losses.

“I knew it was a big fight for everybody and especially for me to get back on track,” said Liddell (21-5). “He had a lot more than I thought he had.”

Silva, who was making his first UFC appearance, was gracious in defeat.

“He won,” said Silva. “I gave my best.”

Temecula’s Rameau Sokoudjou fell short against Brazil’s undefeated Lyoto Machida (12-0) in their light heavyweight contest. The Cameroon native was unable to use his punching power with effectiveness against the karate-trained fighter. Then, unexpectedly, Machida landed a left hand that dropped Sokoudjou (4-2) and proceeded to gain an arm triangle that forced a submission at 4:20 of the second round.

“I’ve been working on my ground game,” said Machida who wants a world title match. “I beat the Alaska assassin, the African assassin, what other assassins are left?”

A heavyweight bout featured two Southern Californians eager to punch out. But San Diego’s Eddie “Manic Hispanic” Sanchez’s experience proved decisive in beating Temecula’s Soa Palelei (8-2) with uppercuts for three rounds. With his nose bleeding profusely and sustaining three consecutive uppercuts, referee Mario Yamasaki stopped the fight at 3:24 of the third and final round for a technical knockout.

“He was out of gas,” said Sanchez (10-1). “He was always putting his head down.”

Undercard

A grudge fight between two Louisiana fighters ended in a decisive submission victory by Rich Clementi of Slidell over the favored Melvin Guillard of New Orleans. A rear naked choke at 4:40 seconds of the first round forced Guillard, who had been predicting domination, to tap out. Though the fight was definitively over, Guillard attempted to assault Clementi but referee Herb Dean grabbed the fighter.

“He still didn’t learn his lesson,” said Clementi after Guillard attempted to rush him after the fight. “I validated what he’s known for six years, I’m the better man.”

James “The Sandman” Irvin (13-5-1) was nearly put to sleep by an illegal knee to the eye from Brazil’s newcomer Luis Cane (8-1) in the first round of a light heavyweight fight. Unable to continue, Irvin was declared the winner by disqualification at 1:51. Cane seemed unaware that UFC rules disallow knees to the head while the person is on the ground. Some mixed martial arts organizations allow it.

Former Ultimate Fighter participant Manny Gamburyan (6-3) quickly took his fight to the ground with former boxer Nate Mohr (6-5). Once on the ground the lightweight used his quickness to grab an ankle and twist. Mohr screamed to stop the fight at 1:31 of the first round.

“I’m so sorry for you man,” said Gamburyan who suspects he broke Mohr’s leg. “Nate’s a great guy.”

San Diego’s Dean Lister (10-5) scraped out a unanimous decision win over Bulgaria’s punch-crazy Jordan Rachev (16-2) in a middleweight bout. The judges scored it 29-28 for Lister.

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Articles of 2007

Pavlik Or 'Money': Fighter of the Year Is…

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There’s nothing like the terror felt when you have a big black bear snarling and snorting and hunting you down, eager to stuff your tender head into his mouth, to make you run as fast as you’ve ever run.

Thanks, Dana White, aka the big black bear.

Thanks for waking up the semi-slumbering powers that be, and forcing them to acknowledge that boxing needed to step up its game, or be eaten alive, and shifted even further back in the sports world’s relevance race, in 2007.

With UFC threatening to snarf up those much lusted after PPV dollars, the suits went into overdrive, and worked smarter, and harder, to give fans compelling matchups.

They agreed to get along to get money, and they relegated the sanctioning bodies, with those moronic mandatories, and instead listened to you, the consumer, and booked the fights that made sense.

Nobody worked smarter or harder than the PR arms for HBO, and “Money” Mayweather, the artist formerly known as Pretty Boy Floyd. Through his appearance on the ABC reality dance competition “Dancing with the Stars,” and stubbornly effective marketing by HBO (24/7 before the De La Hoy and Hatton showdowns were masterful mini-movies which whet appetites of even non fight fans), “Money” emerged as a pay per view attraction who can take the baton as the premier earner from Oscar De La Hoya.

He transcended the sport, and boxing added another player to the mix of fighters that even non-fight fans in the US recognize the name of. Now there’s Mike Tyson, Oscar De La Hoya, and Floyd Mayweather…

Boxing, a sprawling mess of interests lacking a central organization that insures cohesiveness in marketing, and message, and mission, relies on a central figurehead to maintain its precarious perch in the mainstream sports information flow. Mayweather, a savvy marketer who has outgrown his periodic outbreaks of youthful indiscretions, is a superstar that fits our age to a T.

He knows exactly what buttons to push to keep his name in the papers-—or, more accurately today, on computer screens—and feeds us rabid presshounds of negativity and turmoil red meat, with his intra-familial beefs and 50 Cent-inspired rants proclaiming his peerlessness.

The only thing holding Mayweather back is his own talent, probably, as he owns too much of it. He blew out De La Hoya, and Hatton, and like Roy Jones in his heyday, he so dominates his opposition, that drama is missing from his fights. Most of us tune in to the sport to savor the drama that comes from one man reaching deep into the well of heart and guts to bring forth reserves even he didn’t know he possesses, and imposing his will on an opponent who had been imposing his will upon him. That sort of drama, as manufactured by the late Diego Corrales, is the variety that the sweet science can deliver like no other sport.

We saw it in excess in 2007, from my personal choice for 2007 Fighter of the Year, Ohio’s Kelly Pavlik.

He dug into his well, after getting knocked to the floor in the second round of his tussle with middleweight champion Jermain Taylor, and refused to lose.

All of us could apply his tenacity in staying on his feet, and roaring back to topple Taylor with a furious flurry in the seventh round of their Sept. 29 battle, in our own lives. We all could identify with, and root for, the TSS Fighter of the Year.

One could argue that Mayweather, with ultra high profile wins over De La Hoya and Hatton, who did as much as anyone to keep the sport relevant in the last 12 months, deserves the TSS FOTY honor. As referenced before, maybe his superior level of talent has set the bar too high for us nitpickers. We may be prone to be too hesitant to bestow praise on Floyd, because he makes it look too easy. Sorry, Money, it’s possible you are being penalized for just being too damned good. You certainly are the runaway frontrunner for Fighter of the Decade…

Pavlik, we didn’t know how good he was coming in to this year. We knew how good his promoter, Bob Arum, thought he was. But we reserved judgment, unwilling to make too much of wins over Lenord Pierre and Bronco McKart. We became believers, to a point, when the Ohio native showed boxing skill and a closer’s mentality with his January win over Jose Luis Zertuche (KO8), and true believers with his dominant march over Edison Miranda (TKO7), the heavily hyped Colombian who was no match for the Youngstown hitter’s work rate in their May match.

But we still withheld a measure of respect before Pavlik met Taylor, the middleweight king, in Atlantic City. Maybe we had been burned by (not as great as we were led to believe) white hopes in the past, and were worried that hype and marketing were his greatest attributes as a boxer. The respect came pouring forth when he stayed on his trembling legs in the second round of his September scrap with Taylor, and intensified when he closed the show with a KO crack in the seventh.

The fighter has to be rewarded for staying the course, and not allowing himself to be knocked off the title path since turning pro in 2000, and progressing at a sometimes snailish pace, and sticking with his no-name trainer Jack Loew even though some experts urged him to trade Loew in for a flashier model, and battling frail hands, and getting pinched for slugging an off-duty cop in 2005.

Pavlik’s rise in 2007 came the old fashioned way, via training his tail off, and staying on message mentally, and rising to the occasion when the situation offered a softer, easier choice.

There was no mega marketing machine bombarding our short attention spans with a campaign to make Kelly Pavlik into the torchbearer for the sport in 2007.

But the 2007 leg of his march to prominence reaffirms the best of what the sport has to offer, and reminds us that with talents like Pavlik, the sweet science will never crumble into obsolescence.

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Articles of 2007

Resolution Time For Harold Sconiers

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When Harold Sconiers of Tampa, Florida, looks in the mirror these days he doesn’t see the journeyman heavyweight with a 15-17-2 (10 KOs) record that most other people do.

What he sees is the dynamic, hard-hitting heavyweight who made it to the finals of the 1996 Olympic Trials, and began his pro career with six straight knockouts and one decision victory.

Since being stopped in the first round by then undefeated Bermane Stiverne, who had won all nine of his fights by knockout, in February 2007, Sconiers has completely reassessed his life and career.

He has come to understand what transformed him from an exciting amateur and fledgling young pro with seemingly limitless future to a nominal heavyweight who had at one point lost 10 fights in a row.

Now aligned with a new manager, David Selwyn of New York, he plans on utilizing that newfound knowledge to embark on what he believes will be the comeback story of 2008.

“I always knew I had a lot of talent, but I never let that talent completely develop,” said the 31-year-old Sconiers, who has lost to such notables as Clifford Etienne, Maurice Harris, Donovan “Razor” Ruddock, David Defiagbon, DaVarryl Williamson and Eric Kirkland.

“I had a lot of different problems, but my biggest problems were self doubt and self sabotage. I would do things to make sure I never rose above a certain level.”

During his intensive, exhaustive and brutally honest re-examination of himself, he chose to forego all of the negative aspects of his career and instead focus only on the positive. Through lots of reading and candid discussions with his former trainer Larry Berrien, he went about changing the mindset that made him so comfortable with losing.

The first thing he did was look at his complete record from a totally different perspective. Rather than just dwell on the losses, Sconiers lauded himself for beating six previously unbeaten or once beaten fighters. Among them was Ray Austin, who was 14-1 at the time and later challenged Wladimir Klitschko for the heavyweight title.

He also fought Edward Escobedo, who was 12-1, to a draw, and lost a split decision to Ruddock, who has always been a formidable ring presence.

When he examined his 10 fight losing streak, he realized that his opponents had a combined record of 164-32-8. Of the 32 losses, Harris, who had revitalized his once dismal career in much the same way Sconiers hopes to, had incurred 10 of them.

And the always competitive Sherman Williams, accounted for another 10, which means eight other opponents had only 12 losses between them. Several were undefeated at the time they faced Sconiers.

“Losing to all of those guys gave the boxing world the perception that I was washed up and just didn’t care anymore,” said Sconiers. “I realized I had to change that perception, and the only way to change it was to change my old habits and my old ways of thinking, dissect everything I’d been doing wrong, and working really hard to establish a new belief system.”

Tapping deep into his own psyche, Sconiers came to realize that much of his lack of self worth was rooted in childhood issues. As a kid he had a passive personality, and both of his parents were college graduates who held what he calls high ranking positions in the corporate world.

He was bright enough to skip grades in school and he scored high on IQ tests. In no way was he destined to become a boxer. His parents had told him on many occasions that he would be well-suited as psychiatrist or attorney.

His life changed when his father held a Mike Tyson fight party at the family home. To say that Sconiers was mesmerized would be a gross understatement.

“I was instantly locked in,” said Sconiers. “I told myself that I have to do this.”

Sconiers ventured to the Frontline Outreach Gym in Orlando, where he met Antonio Tarver, who was roaring through the amateur ranks en route to the 1996 Olympics. Because Tarver was a few years older than Sconiers, he became a surrogate big brother to him. To this day, Sconiers has the utmost respect for Tarver as both a fighter and a friend.

During Sconiers’ amateur career, which consisted of 77 fights, of which he lost 9, his mother continuously reminded him that, in her opinion, “boxing was for dummies.”

Still, he managed to win a silver medal in the 1996 U.S. Nationals, where he beat eventual Olympic representative and future heavyweight title challenger Calvin Brock, as well as the finals of the 1996 Olympic Trials. In that tournament he lost to Williamson and Lamon Brewster.

When his pro career began to get derailed, the young and immature Sconiers blamed everyone but himself for his shift in fortune.

“I thought the problem was outside me, and thought everyone was responsible but me,” he said. “I dumped Larry in order to self-manage myself. I left what had always kept me grounded. Some of the fights I lost I could or should have won. There’s no way I should have lost to Etienne, but all I did was show up. The Ruddock fight should have been mine.”

As Sconiers lost interest and motivation, he also began dabbling in drugs and alcohol. More times than not, he would take fights on short notice. Even if he had time to train, he never cared if his opponents were switched or where he was lacing them up. Resigned to the fact that he was just fighting for money, he didn’t train hard, if at all.

He’d also pick up a few dollars working as a sparring partner for the likes of Etienne, Shannon Briggs, Jameel McCline, Larry Donald and Kirk Johnson, but the passion was gone. Many of those fighters, as well as their trainers, told Sconiers to snap out of his trance because he was a lot better fighter than he gave himself credit for.

While working with Etienne, the esteemed trainer Don Turner told Sconiers he could make him heavyweight champion of the world if only he’d “get his (stuff) together.”

Sconiers said he was at his personal abyss in mid-2003, when he was stopped by Kirkland, who was 16-1, in the first round in Vallejo, California.

“That was a real bad time for me,” he said. “I was up all night using drugs and alcohol and just didn’t care about anything.”

Although it would be nearly four more years before Sconiers embarked on his personal renaissance, when he looks back on his sordid past that is his most vivid memory. He has learned to use that memory to his advantage.

“A lot of people go down the same route I did and destroy themselves completely,” he said. “I was close to that point around the time of the Kirkland fight, but managed to survive another four years. It is so obvious to me now that I was trying to destroy myself.”

Sconiers is the first to concede that once you fall into the role of an opponent, it is hard to extricate yourself.

“A lot of guys go through this and fall by the wayside,” he said. “Look at Emanuel Burton (Augustus). He’s an immensely talented guy who’s good enough to be competitive and probably beat anyone. But he is in that opponent role, which is hard to snap out of.”

Having done lots of reading on positive thinking and overcoming psychological roadblocks, as well as completely revising his physical training regimen, Sconiers believes he has snapped out of it.

Besides the steadfast support of his beloved wife of six years, Jennifer, who just earned her master’s degree, he believes that his association with Selwyn is a pivotal component to the success he foresees for himself.

They plan on having a momentous and memorable 2008.

“Harold says he is going to be the Cinderella Man of 2008,” said Selwyn. “We plan on keeping a very busy schedule. History has shown that heavyweights are always just a few wins away from redemption. At his best, Harold is very good. It is undeniable that he was his own worst enemy in the past. Now he believes in himself, Larry believes in him, and I believe in him. I’m really looking forward to working with him so he can reach his full potential.”

“We plan on a busy schedule and a lot of upsets,” added Sconiers. “After my first couple of wins, people will probably say they were a fluke. I’m not quite the Cinderella Man and I’m not quite Rocky, but I am an underdog who can make it. Hope sells in boxing, and I plan on being one of the biggest stories of the new year.”

Manager Dave Selwyn can be contacted at: Boxingkid@aol.com or 845-893-2829.

*photo courtesy Harold Sconiers

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