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Winning but Losing: Illustrations from the Flip Side

Ted Sares

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winning but losing

“Losing but Winning” was the title of one of my most recent TSS stories. The theme was that sometimes a fighter loses but leaves the ring more respected than when he entered it. One of the examples cited was Paulie Malignaggi’s courageous performance in losing to heavily favored Miguel Cotto.

But what about the flip side; that is, when a fighter wins but leaves the ring with less than that with which he entered? A recent one comes to mind.

Teófimo López vs. Diego Magdaleno

Maybe Lopez’s moniker should be “Terrifying Teófimo” based on the way he rendered Mason Menard unconscious and then how he savagely knocked out veteran Magdaleno who deserved better from his “brave” corner and from recalcitrant referee Gregorio Alvarez.

And then, wrote boxing reporter Scott Christ, “Lopez also stirred up some controversy after the fight, doing a huge celebration (including an incredible backflip) in the ring, leading to Diego’s brother Jessie, a former super bantamweight titleholder, trying to go after Lopez. Jessie was held back successfully, meaning we got no in-ring riot at least.”

It was a sophomoric way to celebrate a great win.

Showing disrespect to a beaten fighter is not the way to win over fans and many on social media reacted harshly to Lopez’s theatrics. When a boxer disrespects an opponent, he or she disrespects boxing. Teofimo needs to rein it in.

Jermall Charlo vs. Julian Williams (Dec. 10, 2016)

Charlo retained his IBF junior middleweight title by stopping the undefeated Williams in the fifth round after having dominated throughout. Williams went over to congratulate Charlo, but Charlo refused and said, “I don’t want your congratulations, I want your apology.” The crowd then began to boo Charlo and that little attitudinal hiccup has stayed with him ever since.

Jermell Charlo vs. Erickson Lubin (Oct. 14, 2017)

After his sudden KO of highly touted Lubin, Jermell Charlo, Jarmall’s twin brother, strutted around the ring like a peacock in jubilation. At some point during Jermell’s celebration, he even got involved in a bit of a fracas with members of Erickson Lubin’s entourage.

Maybe it’s in their genes, but the Charlo twins, while super talented, always seem to be edgy and cocky and that persona can scar them with a reputation of poor sportsmanship.  Disdain for an opponent, if kept under wraps, can work for a fighter, but the key is to keep it suppressed.

Vinny Pazienza vs. Dana Rosenblatt (Aug. 23, 1996)

Dangerous” Dana is articulate, gentlemanly, affable and was a college student to boot (he is now an announcer on NESN) and that seemed to fuel Vinny’s over-the-top dislike for him. “My hatred for him is true,” said the flamboyant Pazienza….”I could break every bone in his body and feel no remorse. He’s a condescending little punk with that community college degree and I hate every ounce of him. I hate him for all the s— he said about me back when I was supporting him. He hasn’t earned the right to talk like that. He ain’t been there, done that.”

Author Eric Hoffer once said: “You can discover what your enemy fears most by observing the means he uses to frighten you.” Maybe Rosenblatt was paying attention.

At any rate, Dana did a number on Paz during the first three rounds and was in control until he was caught by an overhand right and that was that as Paz floored him and then mugged him until the fight was stopped– but Vinny kept on going after him and had to be pulled away before a ring riot started. Later, he was fined $5,000 and suspended for 90 days by New Jersey boxing commissioner Larry Hazzard for punching referee Tony Orlando who had stepped in to stop the fight and was floored by Paz in an attempt to add more punishment to his already beaten foe. It was ugly and did nothing to buff Pazienza’s already well-hewn abrasive style.

As for Dana, he said to TV commentator Sean O’Grady during the post-fight interview that “the better man won tonight and I give him credit for doing all the things he said he was going to do.”

Rosenblatt won the rematch.

Ann Wolfe vs Vonda Ward (May 8, 2004)

After the 5’9” Wolfe scored the most spectacular KO in female boxing history and one of the most spectacular of all time, male or female, she danced for joy but way too close to her stricken 6’6” foe. Ann should have kept her celebration at a respectful distance. This was not one of her better moments.

Ann later said, “(Ward) pissed me off. That’s why she ended up getting knocked out like that. She told people, ‘I’m gonna be outside signing autographs after this fight.’ ”

An overly gaunt Ward sustained a neck concussion when she fell and was hospitalized. Amazingly, however, Vonda came back to win her final five bouts and finished her career with a 23-1 mark.

Legendary football coach Paul Brown once said “If you get into the end zone, act like you’ve been there before.”

A couple of obvious offenders (and Mike Tyson is not one of them) have been omitted from this story but the fuel that turbo-charged their theatrics was pure hype and that doesn’t belong given the context of the aforementioned.

Can you name some others?

Ted Sares is one of the world’s oldest active power lifters and Strongman competitors and plans to compete in at least three events in 2019. He is a lifetime member of Ring 10, and a member of Ring 4 and its Boxing Hall of Fame. He also is an Auxiliary Member of the Boxing Writers Association of America (BWAA).

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Fast Results From Latvia: Mairis Briedis and the KO Doctor advance in the WBSS

Arne K. Lang

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briedis vs glowacki

The semifinal round of the Wold Boxing Super Series cruiserweight tournament played out today in Riga, Latvia, the hometown of Mairis Briedis who was matched against Poland’s Krzysztof Glowacki. Both fighters had only one blemish on their ledger and in both cases their lone defeat came at the hands of Oleksandr Usyk.

The fans left happily after Briedis (26-1, 19 KOs) knocked out Glowacki (34-2) in the third frame. But it was messy fight that invites a lot of second-guessing and likely a challenge from the Glowacki camp.

After a feeling-out first round, Briedis cranked up the juice. An errant elbow landed behind Glowacki’s head, putting him on the canvas. For this discretion, Briedis was docked a point. A legitimate knockdown followed — Glowacki was hurt — and then another knockdown after the bell had sounded. The referee could not hear the bell in the din. It was a wild scene.

The fight was allowed to continue, but didn’t last much longer. Coming out for round three, Glowacki wasn’t right and Briedis pounced on him, scoring another knockdown, leading referee Robert Byrd to waive the fight off at the 27 second mark. It wasn’t Byrd’s finest hour.

The tournament organizers anticipated the complication of a draw and assigned extra judges to eliminate this possibility. They did not anticipate the complication of a “no-contest.” If the outcome isn’t overturned, Briedis, a former WBC cruiserweight champ, is the new WBO title-holder.

Dorticos-Tabiti

In the co-feature, Miami-based Cuban defector Yunier Dorticos, nicknamed the KO Doctor, lived up to his nickname with a smashing one punch knockout of previously undefeated Andrew Tabiti. The end for Tabiti came with no warning in round 10. An overhand right left him flat on his back, unconscious. Referee Eddie Claudio didn’t bother to count. The official time was 2:33.

It was easy to build case for Dorticos (24-1, 22 KOs). He was three inches taller than Tabiti, packed a harder punch, and had fought stronger opposition. But it was understood that Tabiti, now 17-1, had a more well-rounded game. Moreover, there were concerns about Dorticos’ defense and stamina.

Dorticos was ahead on the scorecards after nine frames. He rarely took a backward step and let his hands go more freely. And it didn’t help Tabiti’s cause that he was docked a point for holding in the sixth frame. Earlier in that round, an accidental clash of heads left Dorticos with a cut over his right eye. The ringside physician was called into the ring to examine it and let the bout continue.

With the victory, Dorticos became the IBF world cruiserweight champion and moved one step closer to acquiring the coveted Muhammad Ali trophy in what will be, win or lose, the most lucrative fight of his career.

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Angel Ruiz Scores 93 Second KO in Ontario, CA

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Angel Ruiz

(Ringside Report by Special Correspondent Tarrah Zeal) ONTARIO, CA – “Path to Glory” featured some of Southern California’s hottest prospects carving their image into the boxing world through the Thompson Boxing Promotions platform at the Doubletree Hotel in Ontario, CA Friday night.

Undefeated welterweight prospect Angel Ruiz (14-0, 11 KO) of Maywood, CA finished veteran Miguel Zamudio (43-13-1, 27 KO) from Los Mochis, Mexico with an impressive stoppage at 1:33 in the first round scheduled for eight.

At 21 years young, Ruiz (pictured) came into the night with four KO wins in his last four bouts and looking to continue his streak. A second-round body shot win over Gerald Avila (8-17-3) on May 10th and first round KO win against Roberto Almazan (8-9) just this year.

Ruiz was just getting started in the ring using his long distance and power punches to punish Zamudio.

Twenty seconds into the opening round, Ruiz’ mouthpiece went flying out and a timeout was called. Once the mouthpiece was placed back in, Ruiz administered a quick flurry of punches but with no exchange from Zamudio, referee Raul Caiz stepped in and stopped the main event fight.

After the fight interview Ruiz was asked about what he saw in the fight, “I see this guy. He wants to fight. He was trying to fight but I’m too hard. I got you.” Ruiz said. “I feel ready. I want to fight with the best.”

With 89 amateur bouts under his belt, although not signed with any promoters, Ruiz is verbally challenging Vergil Ortiz, “Vergil if you see this video, remember me”.

Brewart

In he co-main event, a six round junior middleweight bout, Richard “Cool Breeze” Brewart (6-0, 2 KO) of Rancho Cucamonga, CA won a unanimous decision over Antonio “El Tigre” Duarte (2-1) of Tijuana, Mexico.

Brewart was coming into the fight looking like the faster, more technical fighter of the two. Duarte over-telegraphed all of his punches, allowing Brewart to use his overhand right and awesome agility to angle out of reach.

Even after Duarte checked Brewart on the chin with a strong punch, Brewart’s power punches always ended the rounds. The judges scored the bout 60-54 twice and 59-55 for Brewart.

Other Bouts

A victorious unanimous decision at the end of a six-round toe-to- toe bantamweight fight was given to Mario “Mighty” Hernandez, (8-1-1, 3 KO) of Santa Cruz, CA over lefty Victor “Lobo” Trejo Garcia (16-11-1, 8 KO) from Mexico City, Mexico.

Continuous hard punches were exchanged from both brawlers starting at the bell of round one. Fans were excited after a flurry of punches and then a clear push from Hernandez sent Trejo to the floor at the end of round three, giving the crowd excitement for the coming rounds.

It deemed to be a bit of a challenge for both, as orthodox Hernandez managed to match southpaw Trejo’s overhand right punches with his own in response. After six rounds of continuous action two judges scored the bout 57-56 and one 59-54 for Hernandez.

In what would be an exciting and entertaining four-round heavyweight bout, Oscar Torrez (6-0, 3 KO) from Riverside, CA took on Allen Ruiz (0-2) of Ensenada, Mexico.

A surprising uppercut from Ruiz, in the beginning of round one, put Torrez on the canvas and every eye in the room were all fixated on both brawlers. The look in Torrez’ eyes were more calculated, as he was careful from then on.

Wild punches were being thrown from Ruiz without fear of repercussion, but then a quick liver shot from Torrez sent him to his knees. After a couple of seconds to adjust back into the bout, Ruiz was then checked again by left hook to the chin knocking out his mouthpiece. There were 20 seconds left in round two and the round ended with no mouthpiece.

Torrez showed he was stronger and the more technical fighter and finally ended the bout by KO with a right hook to Ruiz’s body at 1:08 in the third round.

Jose “Tito” Sanchez, a rising featherweight prospect with two knockouts in his first two fights and training under star trainer Joel Diaz, out of Indio, CA, took on veteran Pedro “Pedroito” Melo (17-20-2, 8 KO). Even with his low experience in the professional boxing world, Sanchez showed his maturity in the ring by controlling the fight when following Melo around the ring and landing clean left hooks and powerful body shots. After four rounds Sanchez won by 40-36 on all three cards.

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Is the UFC Purchasing Premier Boxing Champions?

Miguel Iturrate

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UFC Purchasing PBC?

Several news outlets are reporting that the Ultimate Fighting Championship’s parent company Endeavor is in talks with Al Haymon to purchase the Premier Boxing Champions. The deal is far from happening and will be complicated if it is completed. Let’s look at some of the details.

Dana White has been the face of the UFC since the brand was purchased by Zuffa in 2001 and over the years he has repeatedly hinted about invading the world of boxing. In his early days as the UFC’s head honcho, White even challenged his biggest star, Tito Ortiz, to a boxing match. The match never happened but to this day White will tell you he would have beaten Ortiz in a fight under Queensberry rules.

In more recent years the UFC co-promoted the Conor McGregor versus Floyd Mayweather Jr match and White, although he would vehemently deny it, also had to have at least tacitly approved of Oscar De LaHoya’s promotion of the third bout between Ortiz and his rival Chuck Liddell. That match-up was likely assessed by White this way: “If Oscar wants to promote MMA let him lose his money,” but he didn’t stand in the way of De La Hoya and his Golden Boy Promotions.

White’s name has also come up in connection with Anthony Joshua. White is said to have had a huge offer ready for the then heavyweight champion, but he backed off when the realization hit that he could not make matches for Joshua in the way he is accustomed because he had no roster of potential opponents. However, White has been insistent that the UFC will “100 percent get into boxing.”

Under new owners Endeavor, White cannot operate like he did under old owners Zuffa, but if the deal goes down it is likely because White crafted some type of long term vision that he sold to Endeavor co-founder and CEO Ari Emanuel (pictured).

When Endeavor purchased the UFC in July of 2016 for a reported $4.05 billion, White agreed to guide the company for at least five more years, of which roughly two are up.

On the flipside, it is difficult to see Al Haymon relinquishing control of PBC. More than likely Haymon would stay in charge of the PBC wing and Endeavor would serve as a cash cow to keep what he has built going.

Haymon must stay aboard for another reason, though few will say it. The reason is ethnicity. If Haymon is left out, that would basically leave Leonard Ellerbe and his boss Floyd Mayweather Jr as the only prominent African-American promoters in boxing and that would not be a healthy situation.

Premier Boxing Champions has a diverse group of fighters among the over 200 pugilists under contract. Some are African-American as are many of Haymon’s key employees and associates. Frankly, at least a portion of those fighters and employees would not feel the same comfort level they have with Haymon if Emanuel, a member of an influential Jewish family (his brother is former Chicago mayor Rahm Emanuel) and Vegas power broker White were abruptly substituted.

Another effect on the PBC model is on the promotional end. Haymon has cobbled together a group of promoters that operate regionally under his PBC umbrella. The model that Endeavor brings with the UFC will have a more centralized approach to promotion. How will the new owners deal with Lou DiBella in NY, James Leija and Mike Battah in Texas, and Tom Brown in California? Throw in the aforementioned Ellerbe and Mayweather, who operate primarily in Vegas but also in the Washington DC and Baltimore area. How will the promoters who work with the PBC see their relationship change if Haymon left and Dana White was in charge?

Haymon has built the PBC over the years into a big business. He has the PBC on FOX and Showtime whereas the UFC, which previously partnered with FOX, now has a long-term deal with ESPN. This suggests that if a deal is made, PBC and the UFC will have to operate as completely separate entities under the same umbrella, at least for the foreseeable future. And even that might be further away from happening than most people realize.

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