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ESPN THE MAGAZINE’S “CUBA ISSUE” STIRS STRONG FEELINGS

Bernard Fernandez

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The Feb. 17 issue of ESPN The Magazine, like so many that preceded it, was largely devoted to a particular theme. In this instance, the cover photo, of the Los Angeles Dodgers 23-year-old phenom, right fielder Yasiel Puig, hinted at much of what was inside: a series of articles about Cuba, which the publication proclaimed was the launching point for the “opening (of) the next great pipeline in sports.”

That pipeline has been free-flowing from Cuba to the United States and other countries for many years, predating the Fidel Castro-led revolution that toppled the admittedly corrupt regime of President Fulgencio Batista in 1959, although any use of the word “free” doesn’t come close to describing living conditions in the island nation located just 90 miles south of Key West, Fla. The Soviet Union might have formally dissolved on Dec. 26, 1991, which led to the tearing down of the concrete-and-barbed-wire Berlin Wall and the figurative but no less real “Iron Curtain,” but the “Sugar Cane Curtain” that continues to separate Communist Cuba from the U.S. remains in place. That reality is much to the chagrin of the large Cuban-American population in south Florida and more than a few government dissenters in Cuba’s population 11.3 million, who dream of making it to our shores, or at least of the restoration of the freedoms which are denied them in their homeland.

“Some Americans who have never experienced anything else don’t understand how important freedom is,” said Maria Alejandra Santamaria, a retired educator in Miami who came to America from her native Havana in 1968. “Freedom should never be taken for granted. You have to fight for what you want. You have to earn your happiness, and that only comes through hard work and dedication. It’s not easy; nothing worthwhile ever is. But when you have been through so much to even get to the United States, and to live free, you realize what a precious gift that is.   

“There are so many young Cubans who live there now who are as desperate to leave as we were because they know there is something else, something better, than they have grown up under.”

Cubans know there is something better in no small part because of breakout athletes like Miami Marlins pitcher Jose Fernandez and Puig, Cuban defectors who finished first and second, respectively, in the voting for the 2013 National League Rookie of the Year Award, and, in their early 20s, already are millionaires. They know something of the repeated attempts by those players, often at the risk of their own lives or of imprisonment, to reach the U.S. They are familiar with the story of WBA and WBO super bantamweight champion Guillermo Rigondeaux, the two-time Olympic gold medalist (2000 and 2004) who tried on seven different occasions to escape Cuba before he finally reached the U.S. and freedom. In doing so, Rigondeaux – who was incarcerated after one failed defection attempt and was stripped of his national-hero status and his most prized possession, a car – made the gut-wrenching decision to leave behind his wife, 5-year-old son, 15-year-old stepson and seven siblings.

“You are a champion, and it means nothing,” Rigondeaux is quoted in the ESPN piece about him and other Cuban boxers who made it out. “We are like dogs. After all your time is over, you end up telling stories on a street corner about how you used to be a star.”

What is not so widely known are the success stories of Maria Alejandra Santamaria and her husband Jose (known to his many friends and family members as Pepe), who arrived in New York City with little more than the clothes on their backs and, over time, forged new, prosperous lives for themselves and their three children, all of whom were born in the U.S. Including brothers, offspring and in-laws, there are 18 members of the Santamaria clan who live in and around Miami.

“Many Americans believe that what has happened in other countries, including Cuba, can’t happen here,” said Roxana Santamaria, the youngest of Pepe and Maria’s grown children. “That is the danger.”

I know the Santamarias’ saga well, because Pepe is my wife’s first cousin. My beloved Anne is half-Cuban, her late mother, the former Georgina Ortiz, having met and married my future father-in-law, the late J.E. d’Aquin, in 1948 while he was in Havana as an employee of the U.S. government. Anne I met on a blind date as high schoolers in New Orleans in 1965 and we married 3½ years later. Although I am not Cuban – my lineage is a hodgepodge of Spanish, English, French, Irish and Swedish – our four children are part Cuban, as are our five grandchildren. Havana is a city that for many years I have felt connected to, although I have never been there and probably never will. Maybe that is because I have become so immersed in the Cuban culture through our trips to Miami, which sadly are less frequent than I would prefer. When Anne and I are visiting the Santamarias, Maria – better known by her nickname, “Marita” –makes sure I am always well-fortified with café con leche, a particular favorite, and mounds of black beans and plantains. While platters of food are not being passed around the dinner table, tales of what was and hopefully will be again are also exchanged.

“Castro was putting people in concentration camps,” Marita told me of those harrowing days for those who opposed the bearded one’s totalitarian rule. “I didn’t want Pepe to go into a concentration camp. I asked a relative, who used to live here in Miami, to send Pepe money for airfare so he could go to Madrid, Spain. The day before Castro’s people came to arrest him, he left for Madrid. He stayed there for a few months before, with the help of the Catholic Conference, he was able to join me in New York.

“It was terrible being separated. Many Cubans went to one country or another and they never were able to get back together with their families. It was hard for Pepe to make the decision to leave, but it was his only chance to stay out of the concentration camp, where I know that some people died.”

Anne returned with her parents for a brief visit to Havana when she was an infant, and again in 1955 or ’56 (she doesn’t recall the exact year), when she was 6 or 7. What she does recall is the sound of gunfire echoing in the hills when she and her parents went to see her mother’s aunt.

“It was machine guns, I think,” she said. “We knew that there was fighting between Castro’s supporters and Batista’s soldiers in the mountains. I remember being terrified. I think we stayed there for just a day or two before we went back to Havana.

“All my life I’ve wanted to go back there, but after Castro took over we never did, of course. I hope someday, if things are different, I’ll be able to visit again.”

As a sports writer for these past 43 years, and even before, Cuba and Cuban athletes have drifted in and out of my consciousness with surprising regularity. For reasons I still don’t quite understand, one of my favorite pitchers as a kid was Camilo Pascual, the Cuban righthander with the big overhand curveball who performed with distinction for the Washington Senators and Minnesota Twins. I also liked the flair with which outfielder Minnie Minoso played both in the field and at the plate, a style which is replicated by the swashbuckling Puig. Then again, a bit of showmanship has always been an integral part of the Cuban approach to sports. What Minoso brought to the diamond the great welterweight champion Kid Gavilan, with his signature “bolo punch,” brought to the boxing ring.

Said Jose Fernandez, the Marlins pitcher, in ESPN The Magazine: “I am who I am. I come from a different place. Baseball in Cuba’s a lot more emotion, a lot more passion. At the end of the day, it’s a game, and you’re supposed to have fun, right?”

I’m not sure if it was fun I was seeking when I requested the assignment from my editors at the Philadelphia Daily News to cover the 11th Pan American Games in Havana, which if nothing else would have given me an opportunity to report back to Anne all that I had seen of the land of her mother’s birth. But much to my regret, a columnist with more pull and seniority, Bill Conlin, got that gig.

I did, however, cover the 10th Pan Am Games in Indianapolis, Ind., in 1987, which produced no shortage of sights and sounds that made clear the wide gap, ideological and otherwise, that existed between Castro’s Cuba and the U.S.

One of the stories I wrote was about the conundrum in which members of PAX-I, Indianapolis’ Pan Am organizing committee, found themselves while trying to smooth the ruffled feathers of the Cuban delegation after an anti-Castro group paid for a private plane to fly over the Pan Am site towing a banner urging Cuban athletes to defect.

Also on the political front, officials of the American Legion, who had agreed to allow the use of their outdoor mall for the closing ceremony, withdrew that consent when it was learned that a central theme would be the honoring of Cuba, which was to be the site of the 1991 Pan Am Games. The venue for the closing ceremony was shifted to the Hoosier Dome, but even that move wasn’t without incident. PAX-I had hired Gloria Estefan and the Miami Sound Machine, a popular salsa-rock group, to provide entertainment sure to please the glut of Spanish-speaking visitors. But the Cuban delegation reacted to the Miami Sound Machine with the same lack of enthusiasm they might have shown Sylvester Stallone had he paraded through the athletes’ village dressed as Rambo. Cuban Olympic Committee president Manuel Gonzalez Guerra noted that Estefan’s father once was a bodyguard for Batista’s wife. Guerra said the selection of Estefan was a “provocation” of the Cuban delegation and he threatened to boycott the closing ceremony.

The Cubans did, in fact, attend the party, but when Estefan and Miami Sound Machine took the stage, Guerra and his athletes stood up, turned their backs and remained still and silent throughout the show. I have sometimes wondered how many of the protesting Cuban athletes later defected, or tried to.

There was intrigue in competition, too, not the least of which was in boxing. Although the U.S. led the way with 370 total medals and 169 golds, Cuba finished second in both categories, with 175 total medals and 75 golds. Ten of those golds and a bronze went to Cuban boxers, while American fighters were limited to one gold, four silvers and four bronzes.

“Everybody is dwelling on the Cuban thing,” one of the U.S. boxers, future WBA super middleweight champion Frankie Liles, said of the bitter rivalry that was developing in the ring between the two countries. “One of the things that’s in the back (of the American boxers’ minds) is stopping the Cubans – not just beating the Cubans, but stopping them.”

Liles and his teammates came up way short, and four years later, at the Pan Am Games in Havana, the Cubans were still kicking American butt inside the ropes: 11 golds (no silvers or bronzes) to one gold, four silvers and four bronzes for U.S. fighters. It’s little wonder American promoters were so hot to get their hands on some of the more accomplished Cubans.

Then again, not every Cuban superstar, in boxing or baseball, viewed defection as a path to paradise. In 1974, Bob Arum and Don King each tried to entice celebrated heavyweight Teofilo Stevenson, then 22 and the winner of the first of his three Olympic gold medals, to come to America to fight an aging Muhammad Ali. But Stevenson, who was 60 and pretty much broke when he died last year, refused to be swayed. “What is a million dollars,” he reasoned, “compared to the love of eight million Cubans?”

The baseball equivalent of Stevenson, according to Conlin, was Omar Linares, whom Conlin observed at the ’91 Pan Am Games in Havana. “The best third baseman I have seen not named Mike Schmidt,” wrote Big Bill, who also noted that Linares was a “devout Fidelista” who wasn’t going to defect for anything so crass as stacks of U.S. dollars.

All I know is that the Havana I have heard about so often, the one of the Santamarias’ pre-Castro memories, remains an alluring destination for those of us who have ever read a Ernest Hemingway novel. You don’t have to fire up a contraband Cohiba to know something has been lost to Americans who are prohibited from traveling to Cuba, or to realize that even more has been lost to Cubans who haven’t been able to make it to this land of the free.

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Avila Perspective, Chap. 121: Prizefighting in 2021

David A. Avila

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Prizefighting actually dipped underground for the past nine months with professional boxers training illegally in darkened gyms behind shuttered windows and locked doors.

It still remains an underground sport.

The slow death cloud of the coronavirus led to government restrictions forbidding large gatherings especially in enclosed facilities. Boxers still train.

It was a primary reason that prizefighting among the elite was never more bare.

When Tyson Fury and Deontay Wilder met at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas for their rematch, a crowd of more than 15,000 fans witnessed the heavyweight spectacle. That took place on February 22, and it was the last hurrah in 2020.

A new year begins but the old ways of doing things are no longer in place. Those large purses are unattainable without fans, but it’s difficult to convince the prizefighters. All they know is they want to get paid with pre-2020 checks.

Very few of the top male prizefighters took to the prize ring.

One leading American matchmaker, who did not wish to go on record, said fighters do not understand that ticket sales are an important aspect of the fight game. Many prizefighters feel they are underpaid and being cheated when offered purses that fall under their pre-2020 monies.

No fans, no money.

Television or streaming app revenue is not enough without the clicking of the turnstile.

Fans are the reason that fighters get paid and without fans prizefighting does not exist.

Reality in 2021

Before the advent of television, prizefighters were paid strictly on the basis of ticket sales. The more fans a fighter could attract, the bigger the purse. When television arrived it drastically changed the landscape.

Television networks who delve into boxing bring their own budgets and cable networks like HBO and Showtime drastically changed the landscape. Instead of thousands, millions were being paid to the stars. Mike Tyson, Oscar De La Hoya and Floyd Mayweather were the prizefighters leading the way past $20 and $30 million dollar purses. MMA still hasn’t reached those figures. Not even close, unless they are fighting against a boxer as Conor McGregor did several years ago.

During the past three years new players arrived with streaming apps like ESPN+ and DAZN entering the boxing world. One primary advantage has been its worldwide ability to transmit boxing events. However, because not all of the world has access to high tech, those streaming apps are still in the pioneering phase when it comes to building a fan base. At the moment, television still holds the upper hand but the gap is closing quickly.

Lately, DAZN has taken to inserting sponsors logos into their live programming without skipping a beat. It was only a matter of time before they realized the capabilities of inserting commercials digitally. It’s not a new idea; it was explored decades ago by our own BoxingChannel.tv.

Still, as long as the pandemic exists and fans are unable to attend boxing cards the mega fights that drive prizefighting will not take place. The arrival of various vaccines for the coronavirus are a big plus for the sport emerging out of the underground state of boxing. But the fighters need to fight.

Tyson Fury needs to meet Anthony Joshua in a battle for the heavyweight championship and Errol Spence Jr. must fight Terence Crawford this year. Others like Teofimo Lopez are doing their part to open the eyes of fans to the new breed of prizefighters who can fight, talk and excite with their electrifying skills.

Potential stars like Serhii Bohachuk, Vergil Ortiz Jr. and Charles Conwell are catching the eye of fans and all are basically around the same weight classes. They took advantage of the openings for television and streaming spots.

Prizefighters everywhere need to understand this pandemic may last longer than you think. God forbid, but there could be another looming around the corner. It’s time to go for broke and get back in the prize ring. Time is not on your side.

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Remembering Young Stribling on the Centennial of his First Pro Fight

Arne K. Lang

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This coming Sunday, Jan. 17, marks the 100th anniversary of the pro debut of one of boxing’s most interesting characters. On this date in 1921, Young Stribling, carrying 118 pounds, won a 4-round decision over Kid Dombe in the opening bout of a 4-bout card at the auditorium (it had no name) in Atlanta, Georgia. Stribling would go on to fight for the world heavyweight title and would leave the sport as boxing’s all-time knockout king, a distinction that commands an asterisk.

Stribling’s effort against Dombe, who was billed as Georgia’s newsboy champion, made a strong impression on the ringside reporter for the Atlanta Constitution. “A young gentleman,” he wrote, “is destined to become mighty popular in the squared circle. He is Young Stribling of Macon, and a classier bit of boxing machinery hasn’t been uncovered in these parts in a good many years.” Stribling failed to stop his opponent, but left him “badly mussed-up.”

Young Stribling, born William Lawrence Stribling, bubbled into a great regional attraction. Name a place in Georgia – Albany, Americus, Augustus, Bainbridge, Rome, Savannah, Thomasville, etc. – and Stribling fought there. As the star forward on his high school basketball team, one of the best teams in the country, he never ventured far from home for a boxing match until he was deep into his career.

Many of Stribling’s fights were held in conjunction with fairs and carnivals and some others were staged in vaudeville houses. Stribling was the son of professional acrobats. As a young boy, he and his younger brother Herbert performed alongside their parents in a novelty act, a mock prizefight done up in slapstick.

Stribling attracted national attention in 1923 when he opposed veteran Mike McTigue, the reigning light heavyweight champion. The bout was held in a 20,000-seat wooden arena in Columbus, Georgia.

A New Yorker, but an Irishman by birth, McTigue brought his own referee, which wasn’t uncommon in those days. The arbiter was Harry Ertle, a City Marshal in Jersey City, famed as the third man in the ring for Jack Dempsey’s fight with Georges Carpentier, the first fight with a million-dollar gate.

“The road is a treacherous place,” a wizened old fight manager was overheard saying at New York’s fabled Stillman Gym. And Columbus, Georgia, a town situated on the banks of the Chattahoochee River and purportedly a Ku Klux Klan stronghold, was certainly a treacherous place for Team McTigue on that balmy October afternoon.

After 10 rather pedestrian rounds, Ertle called the fight a draw. But he was in such a hurry to exit the ring that he did not make his verdict clear. Rather than call the combatants to the center of the ring and raise both their arms, he merely pointed at both corners, “spreading his hands as a baseball umpire calling a baserunner safe after a slide.”

Ertle didn’t get far. He was immediately accosted by the head of the local organizing committee who upon confirming that Ertle had scored the bout a draw, ordered the referee back into the ring. “You will never get out of here (if you don’t give the fight to Stribling),” he said. “We have all the railroad stations covered.”

Ertle went back into the ring, awarded the fight to Stribling, and then three hours later in the safety of a private residence, he signed a statement saying that his original decision should stand. The incident made all the papers and made Stribling a household name in houses where folks read the sports pages.

When Stribling fought McTigue, he was only 18 years old. And he was fast growing into his body, tipping the scales for the fight at 165 pounds.

Stribling and McTigue renewed acquaintances five months later in Newark, New Jersey. In a shocker, the “Georgia Schoolboy” dominated the Irishman. Stribling won all 12 rounds in the estimation of one ringside reporter. He had McTigue almost out in the 11th and again in the 12th but reverted to clowning and let him off the hook. “It was a bad habit,” said a reporter, “that the kid picked up working the country fair circuit.”

Because New Jersey was then a “no-decision” state, McTigue was allowed to keep his title. Stribling would get another chance at the belt in June of 1926 when he met McTigue’s conqueror Paul Berlenbach at Yankee Stadium.

Boxing writers fawned over Young Stribling who seldom appeared in public without his parents; his father was his chief cornerman. His parents’ names were “Ma” and “Pa,” or that’s what condescending East Coast writers always called them.

The Stribling-Berlenbach fight, wrote syndicated sportswriter Damon Runyon, “was the most widely advertised and most eagerly anticipated event of some years in New York.” The crowd, reportedly 56,000, “attracted more political bigwigs and social and sporting dignitaries than you could shake a stick at.” And the fight, marred by excessive clinching, was a dud. It went the full 15 rounds and Berlenbach, the Astoria Assassin, won decisively (the scores were not announced).

It was back to the drawing board for Young Stribling, which meant back to the life of a barnstormer. Over the next 33 months, he had 75 (!) documented fights and lost only once, that coming at the hands of clever Tommy Loughran in a 10-round bout at Ebbets Field in Brooklyn. That impressive run boosted him into a match with Jack Sharkey, an “eliminator” in which the winner would be one step removed from fighting for the world heavyweight title vacated by Gene Tunney.

Stribling vs. Sharkey was the last important bout arranged by Tex Rickard who died seven weeks before the bout materialized in an arena erected on a polo field in Miami Beach. It was North against South, and the crowd, nearly 35,000, was solidly against Sharkey, the Boston Gob. But Stribling came up short again in a rather disappointing, albeit closely contested 10-round affair. There was little dissension when the New York referee gave the fight to the Bostonian.

Later that year, Max Schmeling defeated Paulino Uzcudun at Yankee Stadium, setting the stage for a Sharkey-Schmeling fight for the vacant title. In the fourth round, Sharkey was disqualified after sending Schmeling to the canvas with a punch that was palpably low.

After his setback to Jack Sharkey, Young Stribling fought his way back into contention with wins over three ranked opponents after splitting a pair of suspicious fights with Primo Carnera in Europe. In fact, in a 1930 poll of 55 sportswriters by the New York Sun, Stribling was named the best heavyweight, out-polling both Sharkey and Schmeling. When the German picked Stribling for his first title defense, he was, in the eyes of many people, choosing his most worthy challenger.

Carnera vs. Stribling was the icebreaker event at Cleveland’s Municipal Stadium, the new home of the city’s baseball team, the Indians. The bout came to fruition on the eve of the Fourth of July in 1931, two days after the cavernous ballpark was formally dedicated in an elaborate ceremony.

Stribling started fast, but Schmeling ultimately proved too strong for him. In the 15th round, Schmeling knocked him to the canvas and then pummeled him into a helpless condition, forcing the referee to intervene and waive it off. This wasn’t a great fight, but it was a quite a spectacle, notwithstanding the fact that there were a lot of empty seats. The Ring magazine named it the Fight of the Year.

This would be Young Stribling’s last big-money fight. In his final ring appearance, he outpointed light heavyweight title-holder Maxie Rosenbloom in a 10-round non-title fight in Houston. According to BoxRec, he left the sport with a record of 224-13-14 with 129 knockouts, a record eventually broken by Archie Moore who would be credited with 131.

About those knockouts: It came to be understood that many were bogus, not fictional, but rather set-ups on the carnival circuit where he padded his record against someone with whom he was well-acquainted. But there are also some curious knockouts on Archie Moore’s ledger. On Moore’s list of KO victims one finds the names of Professor Roy Shire and Mike DiBiase, popular grunt-and-groan wrestlers.

As to Young Stribling’s fistic legacy, historians are all over the map. The biography of Stribling by Jaclyn Weldon White (Mercer University Press, 2011) is titled “The Greatest Champion that Never Was.” That’s a bit over the top. The reality is that when Stribling was matched against his strongest opponents, his Sunday punch was missing in action.

You won’t find Stribling’s name on Matt McGrain’s 2014 list of the 100 Greatest Heavyweights of All Time. Stribling checks in at #23 on McGrain’s list of the all-time greatest light heavyweights and, with all due respect to McGrain, that also strikes us as a bit off-kilter, not giving Stribling enough credit. In more than 250 documented fights, he was stopped only once, that coming with 14 seconds remaining in the 15th and final round of his bout with Max Schmeling.

Regardless of where you choose to place him, Young Stribling was certainly colorful.

Young Stribling lived his life in the fast lane, and with him that isn’t a cliché. He loved to fly, and when he headed off somewhere in his six-seater, said a reporter, “he would take the plane off the ground in a shivering climb so steep veteran flyers gasped.” On the highways, his preferred mode of travel was a motorcycle.

Stribling married his high school sweetheart and they had three children. On Oct. 1, 1933, he left his home in Macon on his motorcycle and never returned. A head-on crash with an incoming car sent him to the hospital where he died the next day from internal injuries. Ma and Pa were there with him in his final hours, as was his wife who had given birth to a baby boy eight days earlier in this very same hospital.

William Lawrence “Young” Stribling was 28 years old when he drew his final breath. He packed a lot of living into those 28 years, including a whirlwind boxing career that took flight 100 years ago this coming Sunday.

Note: The photo is the cover photo from the October 1924 issue of The Ring magazine

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R.I.P. Boxing Promoter Mike Acri

Arne K. Lang

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Word arrived yesterday, Jan. 12, that boxing promoter Mike Acri died this past Sunday at age 63. The cause of death was pancreatic cancer.

Acri was from Erie, Pennsylvania, which also happens to be the hometown of Hall of Fame promoter Don Elbaum. The two often worked in tandem, most notably when they promoted the fight between Laila Ali and Jacqui Frazier-Lyde.

Acri promoted Ali; Frazier-Lyde was under contract to the venerable Elbaum. The bout between the daughters of the legendary pugilists, billed as Ali-Frazier IV, took place on June 8, 2001 at the Turning Stone Resort in Verona, New York, kicking off Hall of Fame Weekend at the boxing shrine in nearby Canastota.

Mike Acri birthed the tradition of holding pro fights at Turning Stone on the Eve of the Hall of Fame festivities. The first of these shows, in 1998, pitted Hector Camacho against West Virginia journeyman Tommy Small. Camacho TKOed Small in the sixth, recapturing some of the prestige he had lost in his pussycat showing against Oscar De La Hoya.

Acri was especially proud of the Turning Stone series. “At these events, you have memorabilia people, you have past inductees, and most important, boxing fanatics from everywhere… it’s the ultimate thrill to know that my fight cards are the center of attention for the biggest boxing weekend of the year,” he told prominent boxing writer Jake Donovan for a 2005 story that ran on this site.

Acri had his best run with Paul Spadafora, the trouble-plagued “Pittsburgh Kid” who went on to win the IBF lightweight title and left the sport with a record of 49-1-1.

Spadafora fought frequently – 15 fights in all — at the Mountaineer racino in Chester, West Virginia, where Acri was the matchmaker. The little town of Chester sits roughly 40 miles northwest of Pittsburgh and 40 miles south of Youngstown, Ohio, cities with rich boxing traditions.

Although Acri was with Spadafora when the “Kid” was just getting started, he was best known as a rejuvenator who latched hold of fighters with name value who were cascading into irrelevancy and restored some of their lost luster while maneuvering them into a few good late-career paydays. Exhibit A was Roberto Duran.

Acri was one of the prime movers of the lucrative rubber match between Duran and Sugar Ray Leonard. In his next outing, Duran was shockingly defeated by Pat Lawlor, a third-rater, and was written off as finished, but Acri extracted more mileage from the Panamanian legend, guiding him into two good-money fights with Vinny Pazienza and two with the aforementioned Camacho, interspersed with stay-busy fights that served to keep his name in the news.

Mike Acri’s last co-promotion, if that is the word, was the acclaimed Showtime documentary “Macho: The Hector Camacho Story,” for which he received an Executive Producer credit. We here at The Sweet Science send our condolences to his family and loved ones.

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Featured Articles4 weeks ago

HITS and MISSES: ‘Bigger and Better Things’ for Canelo and More

For-Whom-The-Bell-Tolled-2020-Boxing-Obituaries-Part-Two
Featured Articles3 weeks ago

For Whom The Bell Tolled: 2020 Boxing Obituaries PART TWO

HITS-and-MISSES-Ryan-Garcia-Kazuto-Ioka-and-More
Featured Articles2 weeks ago

HITS and MISSES: Ryan Garcia, Kazuto Ioka and More

Avila-Perspective-Chap-121-Boxing-in-2021
Featured Articles19 hours ago

Avila Perspective, Chap. 121: Prizefighting in 2021

Remembering-Young-Stribling-on-the-Centennial-of-his-First-Pro-Fight
Featured Articles3 days ago

Remembering Young Stribling on the Centennial of his First Pro Fight

R.I.P.-Boxing-Promoter-Mike-Acri
Featured Articles3 days ago

R.I.P. Boxing Promoter Mike Acri

George-Foreman-vs-Ron-Lyle-A-Watershed-Fight-in-the-Annals-of-Modern-Boxing
Featured Articles6 days ago

George Foreman vs. Ron Lyle: A Watershed Fight in the Annals of Modern Boxing

Goodbye-To-All-That-A-Review-of-Mike-Silver's-The-Night-The-Referee-Hit-Back
Book Review7 days ago

Goodbye To All Of That: A Review of Mike Silver’s ‘The Night the Referee Hit Back’

Avila-Perspective-Chap-120-Boxing's-Best-Pound-for-Pound
Featured Articles1 week ago

Avila Perspective, Chap. 120: Boxing’s Best Pound for Pound

Did-The-Hoodlum-Element-Rule-Boxing-in-the-1950s?-A-Dissenting-Opinion
Book Review2 weeks ago

Did The Hoodlum Element Rule Boxing in the 1950s? A Dissenting Opinion

HITS-and-MISSES-Ryan-Garcia-Kazuto-Ioka-and-More
Featured Articles2 weeks ago

HITS and MISSES: Ryan Garcia, Kazuto Ioka and More

Boxing-in-the-Age-of-the-New-Normal-2020-in-Review
Featured Articles2 weeks ago

 Boxing in the Age of the New Normal: 2020 in Review

Fast-Results-from-the-Big-D-Garcia-KOs-Campbell-A-Split-for-the-Alvrado-Twins
Featured Articles2 weeks ago

Fast Results from the “Big D”: Garcia KOs Campbell; A Split for the Alvarado Twins

Can-Luke-Campbell-Dim-Ryan-Garcia's-Bright-Star
Featured Articles2 weeks ago

Can Luke Campbell Dim Ryan Garcia’s Bright Star?

How-I-Became-a-Boxing-Writer
Featured Articles2 weeks ago

How I Became a Boxing Writer

Kazuto-Ioka-Sensationally-Crushes-Kosei-Tanaka-in-Japanese-Superfight
Featured Articles2 weeks ago

Kazuto Ioka Sensationally Crushes Kosei Tanaka in Japanese Superfight

For-Whom-The-Bell-Tolled-2020-Boxing-Obituaries-Part-Two
Featured Articles3 weeks ago

For Whom The Bell Tolled: 2020 Boxing Obituaries PART TWO

For-Whom-the-Bell-Tolled-2020-Boxing-Obituaries-PART-ONE
Featured Articles3 weeks ago

For Whom the Bell Tolled: 2020 Boxing Obituaries PART ONE

Teofimo-Lopez-is-the-TSS-2020-Fighter-of-the-Year
Featured Articles3 weeks ago

Teofimo Lopez is the TSS 2020 Fighter of the Year

Eddy-Reynoso-is-the-TSS-2020-Trainer-of-the-Year.jpg
Featured Articles3 weeks ago

Eddy Reynoso is the TSS 2020 Trainer of the Year

Austin-Ammo-Williams-is-the-TSS-2020-Prospect-of-the-Year
Featured Articles3 weeks ago

Austin “Ammo” Williams is the TSS 2020 Prospect of the Year

Fast-Results-from-LA-Morrell-TKOs-Gavronski-Montiel-Bombs-Out-Kirkland
Featured Articles3 weeks ago

Fast Results from LA: Morrell TKOs Gavronski; Montiel Bombs Out Kirkland

Jose-Zepeda-vs-Ivan-Baranchyk-was-a-Lock-for-the-TSS-Fight-of-the-Year
Featured Articles3 weeks ago

Jose Zepeda vs. Ivan Baranchyk Was a Lock for the TSS Fight of the Year

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