HYDE: Ha, I finally rid myself of that milksop, Jekyll, and I am free to speak my mind… the mind of a man that knows a little something about the sport of boxin’ but never gets the chance to talk about it cuz that wiseacre and his wisecracks are always butting in. Now, I got nuttin’ more to say about Mr. De La Hoya… I dunno why he and Floyd ain’t fightin’. May have something to do with not wanting to make too much money in one year and doesn’t want to pay that much in taxes… could you imagine not fighting for that reason? Would it be a good fight? By Jove, yes… De La Hoya may be bigger but this is not a fight where size is an advantage, they both fight with their reflexes and when it comes to reflexes Floyd is a bundle of fast twitch reflexes of the highest order. De La Hoya is the harder puncher but this fight isn’t about how hard you hit, it’s always about how much you can take. Mayweather doesn’t get hit much if at all, but with someone who has a potent offense such as De La Hoya, that lean back – to the right – with your chin up – elbows to the body – defense may not work so well. Lemme save you the wait… if Oscar takes the fight to Mayweather and fights in straight punch combinations, he will win, and most likely by stoppage… got me? Mayweather wins this fight by lopsided decision or by Oscar’s people throwing in the towel if Mayweather punishes Oscar every time he TRIES to punch… In other words, making it a fight of reflexes. He is hungrier, faster and doesn’t have as much wear and tear (if any) as De La Hoya. And from where I sit, in my plush pre-Victorian chair, the smart money is on Floyd…

I sit here beside myself, I cannot believe that I’ve said something without being contradicted…

Anyway, what else? James Toney… Wanna know why the guy’s successful as a heavyweight regardless of his condition and “size disadvantages?” Cuz he knows how to fight and he has seen faster punches come at him as a lighter weight fighter… when you see those slow as sludge punches coming from a heavyweight, they may as well tell him they are gonna punch before he does… And so why did he lose to heavyweights like Rahman and Peter? Because along with the added weight he took on the training habits of a heavyweight. He no longer fought like a lighter weight fighter. If he moves his hands like a lighter weight fighter, he beats all those heavyweights, but if he moves his hands like a lighter weight fighter, he will no longer weigh in at heavyweight…. Hmmm, a conundrum. Well, I didn’t see the Peter fight anyway, but I know that that fight was Toney’s fight to win or lose… somehow he’s gotta get his 3rd or 4th gear back. He does that, he’s heavyweight champ… psst, it’s a mental thing. And as for the ref penalizing Peter for hitting Toney with both hands? Since when is that illegal? If a guy hits you with both hands at the same time (and it isn’t a slap or the back of the fist) you get penalized? It is not like he is holding and hitting. And the punch isn’t that effective… it has no effect on the fight, it don’t hurt and only makes you look clumsy and leaves you open to a counter for the most part. Kinda like when they warn a guy for talking when he is fighting, or making him throw punches when he isn’t, or telling the fighters to “mix it up” when they are not, or sticking his hand out… measuring his opponent for whatever reason… none of these things are illegal and nor should they be ruled as such.  To quote Jekyll, and I don’t do this often, “preposterous”!

One of my peeves… Managers who consider the fighters that they manage “their sons”… Boxers, listen to me and listen to me good… whenever you hear a manager say that to you or about you, run! This is simply a ploy of the manager to gain trust from the fighter that he cannot earn over time with true effort. It’s also a way to gain the sympathy of the media and the masses with the “Dr. Livingston the benevolent graces the savages”, it’s bunk for the most part. Now I ain’t saying all of the time, because there are and have been those that give to their fighters ‘til they bleed, but instead of them “treating them like a son”, managers would be better off treating them like the businesses they are… be frank and upfront, MANAGE them and don’t deceive the emotions. Fighter’s will build skin thick enough to adapt and handle the realities of life, believe that.

This qualm isn’t about referee’s that stop fights too early or ref’s that stop fights too late… no, ref’s that stop fights when they shouldn’t be stopped and ref’s that don’t stop fights when they should be stopped is the issue… What is it that prevents a ref from stopping a fight when the back of guys head is getting consistently slammed against his spine? And then, on other occasions a guy gets dropped, gets up and they stop a fight when he is obviously okay. See, knowing the fighter and his habits is an extremely important and effective tool to reffing a fight… and no, you can’t judge all refs for the transgressions of one… and yes, we all make mistakes but there is a consistent level of performance that we need to achieve and maintain and I don’t think it is as hard to reach as it is made out to be. If any one thing ridicules the sport, it is the imbalance when it comes to making decisions… and as people in the profession you know that the sport is monitored by individual organizations, the majority of the people don’t truly realize that and they expect a level of continuity that makes no sense to us within the sport.

OK, besides just recently getting out of prison on a hit and run charge, where has Naseem Hamed been? Talk about an interesting interview. His last fight against Manuel Calvo, in 2002, he won… fight before that against Marco Antonio Barrerra, he lost… But psychologically, where is he at and what caused him to stop boxing? One loss his whole career and he’s calling it quits? I’ll wager that there is something more to the story of his quitting other than becoming disinterested in the profession. What do you think? Physical, political, familial?

This was rather nice being able to air some of my grievances without having to banter back and forth with the crude erudite, Jekyll. Later…