Time has some sneaky-quick hands.
Actually, not so much sneaky-quick, as resolute.
Don’t stop. Won’t stop, not for nobody, no matter how much you try to bargain, or how good your plastic surgeon is….
Ronald Ellis (seen above in Pete Politanoff photo), who fights Friday, on a Mike Tyson show in Oklahoma, is feeling it. The 9-0 (7 KOs) hitter, who fights at 168/160 and is managed by Sheer Management Group, grew up in Lynn, Mass. and now lives in Santa Monica, CA.
“Man, years pass,” he told me. “I’m 25, I remember 21 like it was a couple months ago. It feels like a couple months ago.”
Time passing isn’t the same for us as it is for them. A fighter’s athletic peak isn’t infinite. The sport can reward the wisdom accumulated with the passage of time, but in all cases, really, fortune favors the young. We saw the constraints imposed by aging on Nov. 8, when the youngest old man in sports lost his tagline, when Bernard Hopkins joined us mortals, with our graying beards, hernias and mid life crisis daydreams. Now, Ellis isn’t there, but he seems aware that he’s got to get into another gear, that years will pass and you can find yourself…not where you thought you would be.
Ellis had been with manager Cameron Dunkin, and was on the Top Rank radar, but got off track a bit when he indulged in some reefer, and got popped in a post-fight urine test, after his Jan. 213 win on the NYC card topped by Gennady Golovkin and Mikey Garcia. No more reefer, the boxer assured me, and he’s hoping he won’t have any more injury issues, and is over elbow woes. He seems to be focused on making that leap, to where he’ll be in a mix for bigger things by this time next year.
Eliis disappointed me, in that he doesn’t really have a hint of a Boston accent. “I think I lost it with all my traveling,” he told me with a chuckle. Asked to furnish some intel on Lynn, he pondered and said, “You’re not really missing anything. They have the fluff factory.” Ah yes, the marriage partner of peanut butter, right…
Ellis has been learning from the estimable Dedham Freddie Roach at Wild Card, but will be cornered on Friday by ex 168 champ Frankie Liles, so he should be comfortable when he faces off with Puerto Rican fighter Julio Garcia (6-6, 3 KOs, been stopped three times), a boxer who lives in the Boston area.. Check Ellis out and you will see a guy who likes to box, looks to start setting down on shots after he assesses for awhile, probes for best openings. He’ll switch lefty and righty, to confuse, and he understands that KOs spur interest.
“I’ve been pro awhile, it’s been a little slow ride, but I’m looking forward to next year,” he said. “I’m in shape, and I will be busy and healthy, god willing.”
Ellis has been good and busy under the Sheer banner, having fought three times for them already, since March.
I found common ground with the man when I learned he’s a Libra. We like balance, like to find that middle ground, fairness is of great import to us. “I’d say I’m a Libra fighter, the balance is there, I have power, and I can box,” he told me.
His galpal since high school is preggers, four months, so it is that much more crucial to kick into another gear, be ultra serious and focused, and not let that time pass him by, he knows. “You got to make mo money, tell me about it,” he said, laughing, as we talked about the cost of diapers.
The cost of doing the baby business could be helped if he looks sharp on Friday; the Tyson people have indicated that he could be signed to their promotional roster if he impresses. He trained with lots of Tyson fighters in Florida, and came onto their radar as a possible future star.
Ellis seems to have a firm grasp on the ways of the world, and I sense he’s in a new mode of efficiency. “It can be a cold world, but if I had a setback, I’m ready for the comeback. That’s life… hurdles you got to jump.”
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