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Thread: The One

  1. #1
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    The One

    On another thread I was talking about the Showdown, the 1981 Superfight between my guy Sugar Ray Leonard and Thomas "the Hitman, the Motor City Cobra" Hearns. You know a guy is good when he has two nicknames. I was a 14 year old kid in '81. The '76 Olympic's started my intrest in boxing. I watched pro boxing on the weekends with my dad like a normal kid. It seemed like there was a good fight on almost every weekend back then. You had superstars on free TV all the time. I will have to check this but I remember a Friday night on ABC that had Marvin Hagler vs Vito Autofermo(sp), Leonard vs Wilfred Benitez and Larry Holmes vs Renaldo "Mr." Snipes all on the same card. We had two TVs in the house. A big floor model and a smaller one that sat on a cart with wheels. The big floor TV was being fixed by George the TV repair man and My dad and I were watching the fights on the smaller TV. At some point in the middle George gets the main TV up and running and sticks around to watch the end of SRL-Benitez and Holmes-Snipes. Anyway... the Leonard-Hearns fight was the first fight that I was emotionally invested in. Ray was my guy, he was behind on points, his eye was swelling shut, Angelo Dundee was screaming "You're blowing it son you're blowing it!" It was edge of your seat fun and when SRL made Hearns sag along the ropes and ref Davey Pearl stopped it I was jumping up and down. After this I bought my first KO Magazine. Ray on the cover, the quote from the KO interview was "You've got to want it bad enough." My life was forever changed. I want to know from you TSS reader what was the fight that hooked you?

  2. #2
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    Re: The One

    I just checked and my memory is faulty. The Holmes-Snipes fight was on a different card two years later. Marvin Johnson-Victor Galindez was the first fight of a three fight card on ABC featuring Hags-Vito and Ray-Benitez. That was the night George the repair man was fixing the big floor unit.

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    Re: The One

    Captivating story, Roast. I believe most fightfans have had similar experiences, the moment when they got hooked for life.

    I don't have a TV-memory like that, though - probably because I grew up in a time when there were only two channels on national television, and that was all the television that were offered. They both had banned boxing, and it didn't change until the late 80's.

    I do remember my mama trying to instill some normalcy in me, as a young boy, and bringing me to a local show of amateur boxing held at a theatre. I guess I was about 7-8 years old, and I remember being spellbound by the ring, the attributes, the lights...and the men punching eachother. I also remember reading a swedish sportsmagazine around the same age, with Ali on the cover - and inside the story of his victory in the jungle. Something had started to cook in my brain, and not long thereafter, I visited a club for the first time.

    Fastforward: in 1988 Mike Tyson was about to square off with Spinks. I had been reading about Tyson, and because of the reasons above I had never actually seen him, but I really wanted to catch this one. This was a time when the big fights could be seen in cinemas, so me and a couple of friends took the night train for some hours, into a sleepy small town that oddly enough were one of the few places to show this fight, despite its magnitude, and ended up in a queue around 4am with the cream of national boxing celebrities, all with the same desire as me.

    Already boxing for some years, and already a student of the game that read, listened to and watched everything I could get my hands on, I considered myself somewhat an expert. Since everybody was talking Tyson, I ofcourse had to go with Spinks, and put a bet on him winning on points. Yep. Anyway, before the fight, they showed a potpurri of fights on the big screen. First, there was Spinks. Looked good. I nodded, felt sure my bet was on the way home to my pocket. Then came Tyson. It was overwhelming: the enlarged monster on the screen represented something otherworldly, his victims almost seemed to be punched out of the screen and down into our knees.

    We know how it went. I said goodbye to my bet, and hello to a man that for some years became bigger than the sport that catapulted him into superstardom. In retrospect, Tyson may never have been more sharp, focused or his evil best than that night. No matter what, that night was a great experience with great fighters and in great company.

    I followed Leonard-Hearns II live (since the times had changed, and we suddenly was drowned with quality fights on TV), and had the night before watched their first meeting from 81. I can only try to imagine the impact of seeing it as it happened. It was a great, great fight of the kind that seldom materializes...in fact, still one of the best I've ever seen. The intensity and skill level is and was something to behold.
    Last edited by Grimm; 04-12-2014 at 08:26 AM.

  4. #4
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    Re: The One

    I worked that fight, Roast, as "Statistical Producer" for the announce team of Marv Albert, Dr. Ferdie Pacheco & Don Dunphy. What a night it was! I have detailed this fight in my upcoming book, "Glove Affair." FYI--the in-ring temperature for the fight was close to 125 degrees!

    -Randy G.

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    Re: The One

    I don't have one fight that got me intrigued. I just remember sitting on my dads lap watching boxing in the laundry room where there was the other tv in the house. I have 3 sisters, at that time just 2 as they were older and a I was 3rd born. Anyways, my dad and myself would retreat to the laundry room to watch fights whenever they were on. My mom says I was about 3 when I started watching.

    Growing up we had hbo and I remember being 8-12 watching a lot of Tyson fights and I also for some reason vividly remember the SRL vs Lalonde fight. My dad worked shift work and I remember watching a lot of those fights just by myself..

  6. #6
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    Re: The One

    Quote Originally Posted by Grimm View Post
    Captivating story, Roast. I believe most fightfans have had similar experiences, the moment when they got hooked for life.

    I don't have a TV-memory like that, though - probably because I grew up in a time when there were only two channels on national television, and that was all the television that were offered. They both had banned boxing, and it didn't change until the late 80's.

    I do remember my mama trying to instill some normalcy in me, as a young boy, and bringing me to a local show of amateur boxing held at a theatre. I guess I was about 7-8 years old, and I remember being spellbound by the ring, the attributes, the lights...and the men punching eachother. I also remember reading a swedish sportsmagazine around the same age, with Ali on the cover - and inside the story of his victory in the jungle. Something had started to cook in my brain, and not long thereafter, I visited a club for the first time.

    Fastforward: in 1988 Mike Tyson was about to square off with Spinks. I had been reading about Tyson, and because of the reasons above I had never actually seen him, but I really wanted to catch this one. This was a time when the big fights could be seen in cinemas, so me and a couple of friends took the night train for some hours, into a sleepy small town that oddly enough were one of the few places to show this fight, despite its magnitude, and ended up in a queue around 4am with the cream of national boxing celebrities, all with the same desire as me.

    Already boxing for some years, and already a student of the game that read, listened to and watched everything I could get my hands on, I considered myself somewhat an expert. Since everybody was talking Tyson, I ofcourse had to go with Spinks, and put a bet on him winning on points. Yep. Anyway, before the fight, they showed a potpurri of fights on the big screen. First, there was Spinks. Looked good. I nodded, felt sure my bet was on the way home to my pocket. Then came Tyson. It was overwhelming: the enlarged monster on the screen represented something otherworldly, his victims almost seemed to be punched out of the screen and down into our knees.

    We know how it went. I said goodbye to my bet, and hello to a man that for some years became bigger than the sport that catapulted him into superstardom. In retrospect, Tyson may never have been more sharp, focused or his evil best than that night. No matter what, that night was a great experience with great fighters and in great company.

    I followed Leonard-Hearns II live (since the times had changed, and we suddenly was drowned with quality fights on TV), and had the night before watched their first meeting from 81. I can only try to imagine the impact of seeing it as it happened. It was a great, great fight of the kind that seldom materializes...in fact, still one of the best I've ever seen. The intensity and skill level is and was something to behold.
    Great Story Grimm! I also picked Spinks to win. I thought he could box his way to a UD against the untested Tyson. We could not have known he would be terrified and go down so damn fast. I remember the fight before was Truth Williams-Berbick we and my buds were almost asleep. Then Tyson kills Spinks in 91 seconds. 35 bucks per man for the closed circuit broadcast down the tubes.

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    Re: The One

    Quote Originally Posted by amayseng View Post
    I don't have one fight that got me intrigued. I just remember sitting on my dads lap watching boxing in the laundry room where there was the other tv in the house. I have 3 sisters, at that time just 2 as they were older and a I was 3rd born. Anyways, my dad and myself would retreat to the laundry room to watch fights whenever they were on. My mom says I was about 3 when I started watching.

    Growing up we had hbo and I remember being 8-12 watching a lot of Tyson fights and I also for some reason vividly remember the SRL vs Lalonde fight. My dad worked shift work and I remember watching a lot of those fights just by myself..
    That SRL-Lalonde fight showed what a vicious s.o.b. Ray could be. He landed a left hook to the throat and another left hook out of a clinch to drop Donny and it was the beginning of the end.
    I'm sure how old you are is the key factor to what fight hooked you in. Or maybe like Deepwater you were IN the fight that hooked you. I have read that guys like Vinny Pazienza saw Rocky on the big screen and got hooked.

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    Re: The One

    Ah! The Donny Lalonde fight! It was actually promoted by the WWF!

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    Re: The One

    Quote Originally Posted by The Commish View Post
    I worked that fight, Roast, as "Statistical Producer" for the announce team of Marv Albert, Dr. Ferdie Pacheco & Don Dunphy. What a night it was! I have detailed this fight in my upcoming book, "Glove Affair." FYI--the in-ring temperature for the fight was close to 125 degrees!

    -Randy G.
    I can't wait to read it Randy, maybe you can put that chapter on TSS as you were saying on that other thread. You have had one hell of a career in the fight game my man.

  10. #10
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    Re: The One

    More stories you slackers! I know you have them now give 'em up!!

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