Connect with us

Featured Articles

R.I.P. referee Eddie Cotton Who Vowed to Contravene Protocol for Mike Tyson

Arne K. Lang

Published

on

R.I.P.-referee-Eddie Cotton-Who-Vowed-to-Contravene-Protocol-for-Mike-Tyson

The COVID-19 pandemic has claimed another member of the boxing fraternity. Referee Eddie Cotton died this morning, April 17, in a Paterson, New Jersey hospital. A former U.S. Army sergeant and the son of an amateur boxer, Cotton (no relation to the 1950/1960s-era light heavyweight of the same name) was 72 years old.

 

Cotton was the third man in the ring for the 2002 match in Memphis between Lennox Lewis and Mike Tyson which at that time was the highest-grossing pay-per-view in boxing history. He also refereed world title fights involving such notables as Shane Mosley, Vinny Pazienza, James Toney, Bernard Hopkins, Riddick Bowe, George Foreman, and Gennadiy Golovkin and made three trips to Germany to work title bouts involving Wladimir Klitschko including Klitschko’s 2009 match with Ruslan Chagaev that played to 61,000 in a domed soccer stadium.

 

Cotton paid his dues before getting his first pro assignment. He refereed at the amateur level for 10 years. During this period, the New Jersey Department of Corrections ran amateur boxing tournaments for inmates at the state’s penitentiaries and Cotton refereed many fights behind prison walls.

 

According to the noted boxing writer Keith Idec, who was then a reporter for the Passaic Herald-News, three referees – Jay Nady, Laurence Cole, and Cotton – were considered for the Lewis-Tyson assignment after both camps ruled out Bill Clancy who was the preferred choice of the Tennessee Athletic Commission. Clancy was deemed too young and too inexperienced.

 

Eddie Cotton had two things going for him. At six-foot-five and approximately 240 pounds, he had the strength to pry apart heavyweights in a match that figured to be soured by a lot of clinching. Secondly, he had acquitted himself well in Bowe-Golota II, an infamously unruly fight. Cotton disqualified the “Foul Pole” in the ninth round to the consternation of the pro-Golota crowd at Atlantic City’s sold-out Boardwalk Hall.

 

Lewis vs. Tyson came to fruition on June 8, 2002. It had originally been scheduled for April 6 of that year at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas but the Nevada Athletic Commission pulled the plug following a nasty rhubarb between the opposing camps at a pre-fight press conference at the Hudson Theater in New York. Lennox Lewis emerged from that fracas with a deep puncture wound on his left thigh where Tyson bit him.

 

For all his accomplishments, Mike Tyson was best known to casual fans for biting off a chunk of Evander Holyfield’s ear in their second encounter. After the Hudson Theater incident, wags had a field day speculating whether Tyson’s teeth were more lethal than his fists.

 

Cotton told reporters that he was going to waive a certain custom should the need arise. “If a mouthpiece comes out during a round,” he said, “normally you wait until there’s a lull. But this time, I’ll stop the action immediately and have the mouthpiece put back in.” He wasn’t going to give Tyson the opportunity to bare his fangs.

 

The opportunity never arose. Tyson fought a clean fight and, recalled Cotton, was a perfect gentleman before and after the bout. Fighting before a celebrity-studded crowd that included Donald Trump, Lennox knocked out Iron Mike in the eighth round.

 

A referee working a Mike Tyson fight in this era was working under a magnified microscope. Cotton said he would have had more butterflies if not for the assurances that came from some of his fellow referees. “Richard Steele called me up,” recalled Cotton, “and said you are the best referee for this particular fight.”

 

Eddie Cotton was well-known in Paterson. In 1980, he won election to the City Council. He subsequently became the first man of color named Chairman of that body. When he was tabbed to referee the Lewis-Tyson fight, he was the Director of the Paterson Housing Authority. It would be written that in Paterson folks with no interest in boxing tuned in to the Lewis-Tyson fight simply out of loyalty to Cotton. Some had first met Cotton, a pillar of the community, when he coached peewee league football.

 

Hall of Fame referee Joe Cortez remembers Cotton well. Both regularly attended the annual conventions of various sanctioning bodies and shared the dais at seminars. Ironically, Cotton once presented Cortez with the key to the city of Paterson. This had nothing to do with boxing. Cortez was recognized for his work with outreach programs that he implemented with leading ophthalmologists to address vision problems among seniors.

 

“Eddie Cotton was a very nice man,” Cortez told this reporter, “and, as an aside, he was also a very good golfer.” Indeed, golf was a passion for the standout referee who regularly took to the links before he got sick.

 

Cotton is survived by his wife Ruby, a Paterson councilwoman, two children, and a grandson. We here at The Sweet Science send our condolences to his loved ones.

 

Check out more boxing news on video at The Boxing Channel 

To comment on this story in The Fight Forum CLICK HERE

 

Featured Articles

Daniel Jacobs Edges Past Gabe Rosado on a Matchroom card in Florida

David A. Avila

Published

on

Daniel-Jacobs-Edges-Past-Gabe-Rosado-on-a-Matchroom-card-in-Florida

Former world champion Daniel Jacobs needed the last round to win by split decision against upset-minded Gabe Rosado and keep his place in line on Friday for lucrative super middleweight matchups.

But when the ring announcer erroneously announced the winner was from Philadelphia, confusion reigned for a moment until Jacobs was correctly called the winner.

Brooklyn’s Jacobs (37-3, 30 KOs) jumped out ahead against Philly fighter Rosado (25-13-1, 14 KOs) and held on for the win in front of no fans at the Seminole Hard Rock Hotel and Casino in Hollywood, Florida. For a second, many thought Rosado had won.

Both were careful during the first three rounds measuring each other’s distance and looking for openings to counter. There were very few.

It was the kind of fight expected by those who know boxing: two veterans with immense experience against top-flight world champions. Mistakes were few.

Jacobs, a former middleweight world champion, had fought Saul “Canelo” Alvarez and Gennady “GGG” Golovkin in close but losing efforts.

Rosado had battled Golovkin too, six years ago in a bloody affair that ended in a loss. He had also lost to other champions like Peter Quillin and Jermell Charlo. But none were able to knock him out.

Both were aware of each other’s reputation. Bitter words had been exchanged for years and now they finally got their chance to prove their mettle and they did.

Though Jacobs was recognized as a knockout puncher, Rosado’s resilience was just as well known. Both neutralized each other for most of the fight with their feints and jabs to the body. Neither was willing to leave openings for each other.

Jacobs scored big with a left uppercut at the end of the seventh round. While Rosado wowed viewers with a sizzling right cross in the 11th round.

It was 1950s style, boxing with intelligence. Each found it difficult to land combinations, let alone find openings to score knockout blows. Instead, they had to be satisfied with scoring enough to convince three judges the actual winner.

Neither was able to pull out ahead with any conviction.

After 12 rounds one judge saw Rosado the winner 115-113 while two others saw Jacobs the winner 115-113 to give him the win by split decision.

“It felt just a little weird. It felt like a sparring match,” said Jacobs about fighting without fans in the audience. “This wasn’t a valiant effort.”

Rosado was certain he was the true winner.

“I thought I won the fight. I surprised him,” said Rosado who trained with Freddie Roach for this fight. “I’m a veteran, I know how to fight.”

Indeed, he does.

Jacobs now stands poised to fight one of many super middleweight champions in need of a marquee name.

“I live to see another day,” he said honestly.

Other Bouts

Kazakhstan’s Daniyar Yeleussinov (10-0, 6 KOs) proved he was not an easy touch and knocked out former world champion Julius Indongo (23-3, 12 KOs) to march forward in the welterweight division while grabbing the vacant IBF Inter-Continental title.

In a fight featuring southpaw versus southpaw Yeleussinov caught Indongo with a roundhouse left the first time they exchanged and down went the former super lightweight world champion. Indongo beat the count and survived the round.

Indongo wasn’t as lucky in the second round as Yeleussinov again connected with a left and down went the fighter from Namibia again. He would not get up at 1:24 of round two giving the knockout win for Yeleussinov.

A battle between undefeated heavyweights saw Azerbaijan’s Mahammadrasul Majidov (3-0, 3 KOs) use roundhouse rights to stagger the heavier Sahret Delgado (8-1) to win by knockout in the third round. Majidov actually helped Delgado get to his stool after knocking him out on his feet at 47 seconds of the third round.

Emmanuel Tagoe (32-1) defeated Mason Menard (36-5) by majority decision after a 10- round lightweight fight that saw a lot of clinching and leaning.

Nikita “White Chocolate” Ababiy (10-0) out-fought Detroit’s Brandon Maddox (7-4-1) to win by unanimous decision after six rounds in a middleweight clash. Ababiy hurt Maddox with body shots but found Maddox more resilient than expected.

Check out more boxing news on video at the Boxing Channel 

To comment on this story in the Fight Forum CLICK HERE.

Continue Reading

Featured Articles

Pradabsri Upsets Menayothin, Ends the Longest Unbeaten Streak of Modern Times

Arne K. Lang

Published

on

Pradabsri-Upsets-Menayothin-Ends-the-Longest-Unbeaten-Streak-of-Modern-Times

During the wee hours in the Americas, a big upset was brewing in Thailand. In Nakhon Sawan, a city roughly 150 miles north of Bangkok, Panya Pradabsri (aka Petchmanee CP Freshmart) out-pointed Wanheng Menayothin (aka Chayaphon Moonsri) in a domestic clash with international significance. Manayothin entered the bout with a 54-0 (18) record and was making the 13th defense of his WBC world minimumweight title.

Pradabsri had been defeated only once in 35 previous starts, but only 11 of his 34 victories had come against fighters with winning records. According to ringside reports, he kept Menayothin at bay with good fundamentals, a stiff jab, and good lateral movement. All three judges had it 115-113. The fight wasn’t without controversy as Menayothin finished stronger and many folks scoring off the live video thought that he had done just enough to retain his title.

How good was/is Menayothin? That’s a question that serious boxing fans will likely debate for decades.

In the summer of 2019, Menayothin signed a co-promotional deal with Oscar De La Hoya’s Golden Boy Promotions. At time, GBP president Eric Gomez described him as one of the best fighters in the world. “We really want to bring him to the U.S. so people can see how talented he really is,” Gomez told England’s Sky Sports.

Menayothin was expected to make his U.S. debut in April of this year, but the pandemic ruined that plan. Earlier this year, he announced his retirement, but rescinded it after only two days.

Scottish boxing historian Matt McGrain, who has an exclusive arrangement with this web site, had lukewarm opinion of the Thai mighty-mite although he rated him the second-best 105-pound boxer of the decade, trailing only his countryman Thammanoon Niyomtrong (aka Knockout CP Freshmart).

“He is disciplined, strong, brings good pressure and is armed with a very decent range of punches,” said McGrain, “(but his record) is comprised mostly of men any competent fighter would be expected to beat.”

Although only one boxer from Thailand has been inducted into the International Boxing Hall of Fame (Khaosai Galaxy, class of 1999), the Southeast Asia nation has produced some outstanding boxers over the years – Chartchoi Chionoi, Sot Chitalada, Pongsaklek Wonjongkam, and Srisaket Sor Rungvisai to name just a few. The difference between these fighters and Wanheng Menayothin is that they all left the comfort zone of their homeland to score one or more important wins on foreign soil.

Menayothin may yet display his wares in a U.S. ring. But at age 35, an advanced age for small fighters in particular, we won’t get to see him at his best and now that his bubble has been burst, disinviting further comparisons to Mayweather and Marciano, the curiosity factor has been tempered.

To comment on this story in the Fight Forum CLICK HERE

Continue Reading

Featured Articles

Yoka vs. Hammer Kicks Off the Thanksgiving Weekend Slate on ESPN+

Avatar

Published

on

Yoka-vs-Hammer-Kicks-Off-the-Thanksgiving-Weekend-Slate-on-ESPN+

PRESS RELEASE— Tony Yoka, the dynamic heavyweight punching Parisian, aims to impress in his ESPN platform debut. Yoka, who won a super heavyweight gold medal for France at the 2016 Rio Olympics, will fight veteran Christian Hammer in a 10-rounder Friday at H Arena in Nantes, France.

Yoka-Hammer will stream live and exclusively this Friday, Nov. 27 in the United States on ESPN+ beginning at 2:55 p.m. ET/11:55 a.m. PT.

The ESPN+ stream will also include the return of unbeaten 2016 French Olympic gold medalist Estelle Yoka-Mossely against Pasa Malagic in an eight-round lightweight bout. Yoka and Yoka-Mossely, who have been married since 2018, welcomed their second child in May.

insert

Earlier this year, Yoka inked a promotional agreement with Top Rank, which will co-promote him with Ringstar France.

“Tony Yoka’s potential is limitless, and he is a grounded young man who is motivated to be a great professional fighter,” said Top Rank chairman Bob Arum. “France has never had a world heavyweight champion, and I believe Tony is the one to bring the sport’s biggest honor home.”

The 28-year-old Yoka’s stellar amateur run included a berth at the 2012 London Olympics and gold medals at the 2015 World Championships and 2010 Youth Olympic Games. Before his triumph in Rio, he’d already defeated the likes of former heavyweight world champion Joseph Parker and current undefeated prospects Joe Joyce and Ivan Dychko. At the Rio Olympics, he defeated Croatian standout Filip Hrgović in the semifinals and edged Joyce in the gold medal match.

As a professional, Yoka (8-0, 7 KOs) made his debut in June 2017 with a second-round stoppage over the previously undefeated Travis Clark. Apart from a decision win over Jonathan Rice in his second outing, Yoka has stopped every foe, including durable Englishman David “White Rhino” Allen and former European champion Alexander Dimitrenko. He made his 2020 debut Sept. 25 and stopped former world title challenger Johann Duhaupas in one round.

Hammer (25-6, 15 KOs) has fought many of the leading heavyweight names during his 12-year career, falling short against Tyson Fury, Luis Ortiz and Alexander Povetkin. He’s notched myriad upset victories, including a highlight-reel knockout over David Price and a 2016 split decision over Erkan Teper for the WBO European belt. In March 2019, he went the 10-round distance against Ortiz and has not been stopped since Fury forced him to retire on his stool after eight rounds in their February 2015 clash.

Check out more boxing news on video at the Boxing Channel 

To comment on this story in the Fight Forum CLICK HERE

 

Continue Reading
Advertisement
The-Top-Ten-Light-Flyweights-of-the-Decade-2010-2019
Featured Articles4 weeks ago

The Top Ten Light Flyweights of the Decade: 2010-2019

Boxing-Exhibitions-Side-Show-New-Angle-or-Something-Else
Featured Articles4 weeks ago

Boxing Exhibitions: Side Show, New Angle, or Something Else?

Canelo-Alvarez-Splits-With-Golden-Boy-and-DAZN-and-Moves-On-to-Caleb-Plant
Featured Articles3 weeks ago

Canelo Alvarez Splits With Golden Boy and DAZN and Moves On to Caleb Plant

Ready-Or-Not-Here-It-Comes-Boxing's-New-Bridgergate-Division
Featured Articles3 weeks ago

Ready Or Not, Here It Comes, Boxing’s New Bridgerweight Division

Deontay-Wilder's-Lame-Excuse-Gets-No-Brownie-Points-for-Originality
Featured Articles3 weeks ago

Deontay Wilder’s Lame Excuse Gets No Brownie Points for Originality

Literary-Notes-Becoming-Muhammad-Ali
Featured Articles3 weeks ago

Literary Notes: “Becoming Muhammad Ali”

Gervonta-Davis-Disposes-of-Leo-Santa-Cruz-With-a-Brutal-One-Punch-Knockout
Featured Articles4 weeks ago

Gervonta Davis Disposes of Leo Santa Cruz With a Brutal One-Punch Knockout

Juan-Domingo-Roldan-Succumbs-to-Covid-19-at-age-63-fought-Hagler-snd-Hearns
Featured Articles1 week ago

Juan Domingo Roldan Succumbs to Covid-19 at age 63; fought Hagler and Hearns

Boxing's-Chaotic-Weight-Divisions-A-Short-History-of-How-We-Got-to-Where-We-Are
Featured Articles2 weeks ago

Boxing’s Chaotic Weight Divisions: A Short History of How We Got to Where We Are

Naoya-Inoue-and-Mikaela-Mayer-Win-in-Las-Vegas
Featured Articles4 weeks ago

Naoya Inoue and Mikaela Mayer Win in Las Vegas

Avila-Perspective-Chap-112-Devin-Haney-and-More
Featured Articles3 weeks ago

Avila Perspective, Chap 112: Devin Haney and More

HITS-and-MISSES-Celebrating-Terence-Crawford-and-More
Featured Articles2 weeks ago

HITS and MISSES: Celebrating Terence Crawford and More

The-Top-Ten-Strawweights-of-the-Decade-2010-2019
Featured Articles2 weeks ago

The Top Ten Strawweights of the Decade: 2010-2019

No-Knockout-for-Devin-Haney-But-He-Outclasses-Gamboa-to-Retain-His-Title
Featured Articles3 weeks ago

No Knockout for Devin Haney, But He Outclasses Gamboa to Retain His Title

HITS-and-MISSES-Halloween-Weekend-Edition
Featured Articles4 weeks ago

HITS and MISSES: Halloween Weekend Edition

Avila-Perspective-Chap-113-Terence-Crawford-and-the-British-Jinx
Featured Articles2 weeks ago

Avila Perspective, Chap 113: Terence Crawford and the British Jinx

Cassius-X-The-Transformation-of-Muhammad-Ali
Featured Articles2 weeks ago

“Cassius X: The Transformation of Muhammad Ali”

Avila-Perspective-Chap-111-Munguia-Tank-and-The-Monster
Featured Articles4 weeks ago

Avila Perspective, Chap 111: Munguia, Tank and The Monster

Terence-Crawford-TKOs-Kell-Brook-Franco-Moloney-II-Ends-in-Controversy
Featured Articles2 weeks ago

Terence Crawford TKOs Kell Brook; Franco-Moloney II Ends in Controversy

Stanionis-Kent-Cruz-and-Booker-Stay-Undefeated-on-a-Midweek-Show-in-LA
Featured Articles3 weeks ago

Stanionis, Kent Cruz, and Booker Stay Undefeated on a Midweek Show in L.A.

Daniel-Jacobs-Edges-Past-Gabe-Rosado-on-a-Matchroom-card-in-Florida
Featured Articles9 hours ago

Daniel Jacobs Edges Past Gabe Rosado on a Matchroom card in Florida

Pradabsri-Upsets-Menayothin-Ends-the-Longest-Unbeaten-Streak-of-Modern-Times
Featured Articles14 hours ago

Pradabsri Upsets Menayothin, Ends the Longest Unbeaten Streak of Modern Times

Yoka-vs-Hammer-Kicks-Off-the-Thanksgiving-Weekend-Slate-on-ESPN+
Featured Articles2 days ago

Yoka vs. Hammer Kicks Off the Thanksgiving Weekend Slate on ESPN+

Camacho me and Mia
Featured Articles2 days ago

Avila Perspective, Chap. 115: Macho, Freddie and More

Muhammad-Ali-Biographer-Jonathan-Eig-Talks-About-His-Book-and-the-Icon-Who-Inspired-It
Featured Articles4 days ago

Muhammad Ali Biographer Jonathan Eig Talks About His Book and the Icon Who Inspired It

The-Peculiar-Career-of-Marcos-Geraldo
Featured Articles4 days ago

The Peculiar Career of Marcos Geraldo

HITS-and-MISSES-Javier-Fortuna-Shines-and-More
Featured Articles5 days ago

HITS and MISSES: Javier Fortuna Shines and More

Boxing-Odds-and-Ends-Filip-Hrgovic-vs-Efe-Ajagba-Dame-Helen-Mirren-and-More
Featured Articles5 days ago

Boxing Odds and Ends: Filip Hrgovic vs. Efe Ajagba, Dame Helen Mirren and More

Avila-Perspective-Chap-114-Electrifying-Ryan-Garcia-Opens-Up-2021
Featured Articles6 days ago

Avila Perspective, Chap. 114: Electrifying Ryan Garcia Opens Up 2021

Fast-Results-from-LA-Javier-Fortuna-Brings-His-A-Game-Halts-Lozada
Featured Articles7 days ago

Fast Results from LA: Javier Fortuna Brings his “A” Game; Halts Lozada

Conor-Benn-Improves-to-17-0-at-the-Expense-of-Sebastian-Formella
Featured Articles7 days ago

Conor Benn Improves to 17-0 at the Expense of Sebastian Formella

Boxing's-Chaotic-Weight-Divisions-Part-Two-of-a-Two-Part-Story
Featured Articles1 week ago

Boxing’s Chaotic Weight Divisions: Part Two of a Two-Part Story

Ring-City-Hollywood-Debut-Sees-Foster-KO-Roman
Featured Articles1 week ago

Ring City Hollywood Debut Sees Foster KO Roman

Juan-Domingo-Roldan-Succumbs-to-Covid-19-at-age-63-fought-Hagler-snd-Hearns
Featured Articles1 week ago

Juan Domingo Roldan Succumbs to Covid-19 at age 63; fought Hagler and Hearns

Santa-Claus-Arrives-Early-with-Canelo-vs-Callum-on-Dec-19
Featured Articles1 week ago

Santa Claus Arrives Early with Canelo vs. Callum on Dec. 19

HITS-and-MISSES-Celebrating-Terence-Crawford-and-More
Featured Articles2 weeks ago

HITS and MISSES: Celebrating Terence Crawford and More

Boxing's-Chaotic-Weight-Divisions-A-Short-History-of-How-We-Got-to-Where-We-Are
Featured Articles2 weeks ago

Boxing’s Chaotic Weight Divisions: A Short History of How We Got to Where We Are

Terence-Crawford-TKOs-Kell-Brook-Franco-Moloney-II-Ends-in-Controversy
Featured Articles2 weeks ago

Terence Crawford TKOs Kell Brook; Franco-Moloney II Ends in Controversy

Katie-Taylor-Dominates-on-a-Female-Heavy-Fight-Card-in-London
Featured Articles2 weeks ago

Katie Taylor Dominates on a Female-Heavy Fight Card in London

The-Top-Ten-Strawweights-of-the-Decade-2010-2019
Featured Articles2 weeks ago

The Top Ten Strawweights of the Decade: 2010-2019

Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement

Trending

Advertisement