The Boxing Year That Was

Benn Schulberg reveals that his father, Budd Schulberg, considers the first Corrales-Castillo bout the best fight he has ever seen, due to the dramatic pendulum sway in the final round. I was amazed to read this, given that Budd has been watching fights for 70-plus years.

It should be no surprise, then, that Dan Rafael of ESPN picks Corrales-Castillo I as his fight of the year. Could there have been any other choice? Rafael lists a number of other slugfests which get honorable mention – including Arce vs. Hussein, one that I particularly enjoyed myself. Hopefully we will see more of Jorge Arce during 2006. Showtime, HBO … are you listening?

USA Today offers its 2005 picks of the year and picks as its fight of the year – you guessed it – the May 7 title unification fight between Diego Corrales and Jose Luis Castillo. Amongst other awards, USA Today selects Jermain Taylor as its fighter of the year and Floyd Mayweather Jr. as number 1 in the pound for pound rankings.

Interesting take by the Australian Daily Telegraph which reports Zab Judah is dodging Kostya Tszyu. According to the headline at the Daily Telegraph, Judah does not want to face Tszyu again so he is fighting Floyd Mayweather instead. Obviously the editor resonsible for writing the headlines at the Daily Telegaph isn’t a fight fan. Below the Judah-Tszyu lead in the same column at the Daily Telegraph is the tragic tale of former Tszyu sparring partner Leonard Townsend, who has been sentenced to 85 years in prison in Indiana. Townsend was found guilty of murder and attempted murder in October in a gun battle that started during a haircut. During a haircut?

If Joe Mesi is able to get licensed and he is willing, Vassiliy Jirov says he would fight Mesi again. “He has warning enough. He is ignoring this. If he wants to hurt himself, it’s strange,” said Jirov.

Not really boxing news per se, but on Christmas day we linked to a Jack Johnson restrospective on the boxing news links page. Part 1 and Part 2 on Jack Johnson’s visit to Vancouver, Canada are well worth the read.

Finally, Ricky Hatton has been given the all-clear for a quick return to the ring after making a remarkable recovery. Hatton’s father and manager, Ray Hatton, says the unbeaten Mancunian will fight again in the United States in the spring.