By Jim Amato / Senior Boxing Writer
In April of 1967, Jimmy Ellis pounded out a fifteen round decision over Jerry Quarry to win the vacant W.B.A. heavyweight championship. In March of 1968, Joe Frazier halted Buster Mathis to win heavyweight title recognition in New York State. Two months later Bob Foster knocked out the great Dick Tiger to capture the light heavyweight crown. Foster felt the big money was in the heavyweight division and he began to challenge the champions. Frazier actively defended his title turning back Manuel Ramos, Jerry Quarry, Oscar Bonevena, and Dave Zyglewicz. Ellis on the other hand made only one defense, a disputed verdict over ex-champion Floyd Patterson. Proposed matches for Jimmy against HenryCooper, Gregorio Peralta and Robert Cleroux never materialized. By the time Ellis met Frazier in February of 1970 to unify the crown the ring rust had settled in. After Frazier destroyed Ellis he would go on to meet Foster later on that year with disastrous results for Bob.
What if during his period of idleness before the Frazier debate had Ellis entertained Foster’s challenge? Foster as we would find out could not handle Frazier’s power, strength and aggression. How would he have fared against a master boxer like Ellis? It may have gone something like this.
First I’d like to extend sincere Thanksgiving holiday wishes to all those who appreciate this column. Okay, even those that don’t.***
First bit of disturbing news has been confirmed, that both James Toney and Roy Jones Junior are serious about making comebacks. Hey guys, with all due respect, please DON’T!
Okay, now that I’m back on a winning streak, let’s see if I can close the year in style.
Manny “Pac Man” Pacquiao is back in the ring this weekend in what figures to be a fairly one-sided but very exciting bout.
Rusty Rubin is an award winning boxing writer, covering the sweet science for more than 35 years and has been a post on dmboxing.com since 2007
Two for two last weekend on a couple of pretty tough fights. I still don’t feel redeemed quite yet.
The big fights on HBO this weekend and judging by the records, it could be very interesting.
To be truthful, coming out of the amateur ranks, I never thought that Andre Ward would be a world champion. I admit I was wrong and pleasantly surprised to see where his career has taken him thus far.
Ward, 26-0 (14), is 29 years old and a native of Oakland, California and he fights in Ontario, California this weekend to try to retain the WBA super middleweight title.
Rusty Rubin is an award winning boxing writer, covering the sport for more than 35 years and has contributed to dmboxing.com since 2007.
Sometimes I wonder how I could analyze a fight closely and miss by a mile. It happens, but of late it’s happening to me more often than I’d like.
Two big fights on HBO this weekend and they both figure to be very exciting. The fights are from Corpus Christi, Texas and figure to add up to an exciting Saturday, (Nov. 9) night of television.
The main event for the WBO jr. middleweight title figures to be a barn burner, when Roman “Rocky” Martinez 27-1-2 (16) takes on Mikey Garcia 32-0 (27).
This figures to be a classic match-up between boxer Martinez and boxer-puncher Garcia.
Senior Boxing Writer
Champion Ingemar Johansson vs. Sonny Liston was a fight that very well could have happened. After Ingo shocked Floyd Patterson to win the title in 1959, he was the “man.”
At this time Sonny was just beginning to establish himself as a heavyweight to be reckoned with. By the time Floyd and Ingo met again in June of 1960, Sonny had defeated Nino Valdez and Cleveland Williams twice. One month after Patterson – Johansson II, Sonny stopped the clever Zora Folley. Then two months later he outscored the classy Eddie Machen. There was little doubt that Sonny Liston would have to be dealt with.
Think about this: What if Ingemar would have won his 1960 bout with Patterson? There would have been no need for a 1961 rubber match with Floyd. Enter Sonny. He would have been the most logical contender. So how would a match between Johansson and Liston panned out in June of 1961?
Rusty Rubin is an award winning world renowned boxing writer, covering the sport for more than 35 years and has been part of the dmboxing.com team since 2007. My only comment on the Bradley – Marquez fight last week is a shout out to Bradley who fought the type of fight that few if any of us would have expected. Congratulations to “Desert Storm”.
The big fight this week is on Oct. 19, and on HBO television. It’s from Denver, Colorado, the first fight from there ever on HBO and the first championship fight since September 2000. The bout, for the WBO light heavyweight title is between Denver native Mike Alvarado, 34-1-1 (23), who, at 33 years of age, takes on 29-year-old Ruslan Provodnikov or Russia.
Provodnikov comes in with a record of 22-2 with 15 knockouts, but one of those two loses was a unanimous decision to Tim Bradley.
Alvarado’s only loss came at the hands of Brandon Rios via the TKO route.
By Jim Amato / Senior Boxing Writer
In the time that I have followed boxing there are many matches that could have happened and should have happened. Some, like Archie Moore-Sugar Ray Robinson and Jake LaMotta-Rocky Graziano, were before my era. They might have been thrilling matches, but for one reason or another they just never came off.
One from “my era,” the early 1970′s, was Ken Buchanan against Mando Ramos. Mr. Ramos was one of my early favorites. He was just a few years older than me when he won the lightweight title in his second try versus the talented Carlos Teo Cruz, when he was barely 20 years old. He lost the title soon after to Panama’s slick former world champion Ismael Laguna. Mando was cut up by the jabs and quick hands of Laguna. He also had trouble with Laguna’s fast feet and shifty style. Soon after Ismael Laguna handed the crown to another crafty boxer, the gritty Ken Buchanan of Scotland.
( Photo taken courtesy David Martinez at World Boxing Hall of Fame Banquet of Champions, October 20, 2001, Westin Bonaventure, Los Angeles, California )