In the 1940s, two-time world middleweight champion Tony Zale seemingly had it all. Battling colorful Rocky Graziano in The Ring magazine’s Fights of the Year in 1946 and 1947, “The Man of Steel” from Gary, Indiana, convincingly defeated him in their third and final contest in 1948. These bouts are acknowledged as among the most exciting trilogies in boxing history. Tony had hosts of adoring fans and supportive family, was married to a beautiful and talented woman, and had two little girls whom he adored.
BOOK REVIEW: “TRIBUTES, MEMORIES AND OBSERVATIONS”
By Steve Canton
Forward by Al Berstein
My book, Steve Canton’s Tributes, Memories & Observations of the Sweet Science is out and doing exceptionally well in both the boxing and mainstream communities. Comprised of thirty-seven chapters, 370 pages and 550 pictures, it is a lifetime collection of boxing and human interest stories which takes the reader on an unforgettable and sometimes emotional journey seldom seen. It chronicles many of the lesser known boxers, and others associated with the sport, and details their contributions not only to boxing but to society as well. Included also are personal tributes to many well-known characters and observations and suggestions to improve the sport. For those interested in statistics a detailed boxing record of the fighters whose stories are told is included. Hall of Fame commentator Al Bernstein wrote the foreword.
“Steve Canton’s Tributes, Memories & Observations of the Sweet Science,” one of the best new books of the year!
“One of the best boxing books I have ever read … you won’t be able to put it down once you open the front cover.” – Harold Lederman, HBO Sports
“Canton, who has spent a lifetime in boxing as a boxer, trainer, cutman, promoter, commentator, writer and historian, draws on that experience with stories of great depth, detail and passion. A must read.” – Dan Cuoco, Director, International Boxing Research Organization (IBRO)
“Steve Canton is a true boxing person. His stories are from the heart and from experience. As a writer he is gifted. This book is a great read and highly recommended.” – Roy Jones Jr., All-time great boxing world champion
Get your personally signed book – Special price $25.00!
On Saturday, April 26, 2014 boxing fans enjoyed another beautiful day of out-door boxing at the “Stubhub” arena in Carson, California, Home of many legendary fights.
Keith Thurman [23-0, 21 KO’s] of Clearwater, FL. and WBA interim Welterweight champion came out strong against Julio Diaz [40-10-1, 29 KO’s] of Coachella, CA. of a schedule 12-rounds bout. Thurman made Diaz take a knee in the second round. The following round Diaz and Thurman exchange hard leather but when round ended Diaz couldn’t continue due to a rib injury.
Veterans Park District’s Leyden Boxing Gym in suburban Chicago was the scene of some hot and heavy action last week as a couple of undefeated fighters from the West Coast got in some work with a spirited sparring session.
Roger Romo from Oxnard, California brought his professional record of 5-0-3, and a wealth of experience, into the gym to work with Tacoma, Washington’s Mike Gavronski, who sports a professional record of 13-0-1. In addition to having worked with the likes of Sergio Martinez and Kelly Pavlik, Romo has grown up in boxing as the younger brother of two time world champion Fernando Vargas.
I will always remember this fight because I was there, at ringside, close enough to reach out and touch Cleveland Denny. In the late 1970’s my friend Johnny Lira was the USBA Lightweight Champion and one of world’s top rated lightweights. In ’79 he lost in his bid to capture the WBA World Lightweight Title.
A year later, Ring Magazine had him rated #5 in the world , he was looking to get back into the mix and get another shot at the title. Johnny was going to fight Gaeten Hart on the undercard of Sugar Ray Leonard vs Roberto Duran, up in Montreal. The bout was scheduled for June 20,1980. But they weren’t able to make the fight and Cleveland Denny wound up in the ring facing Hart, instead of Lira. Johnny, myself and Mauro DiFiore decided to go up to Montreal anyway and see the show. What a show it was, taking place at the Olympic Stadium and in the same city where just four years earlier Sugar Ray Leonard won a Gold Medal in the 1976 Olympics. Johnny was on top of his game so we were with Angelo Dundee, Wildredo Benitez, media guys like the dean of all boxing historians Hank Kaplan, etc. We were surrounded by boxing royalty. We had no tickets, but somebody hooked us up and we got in on some TV/Radio Press Passes! We had no assigned seats! I ended up sitting in Leonard’s corner, on a folding chair I picked up from someplace, next to Joe Frazier. We talked about his son Marvis, who was an amateur at the time, and had just won the National’s.
(Results from Hawaiian Gardens, California / February 15, 2014)
In the Main Event of a scheduled 10 rounds lightweight bout, Diego Magdaleno knocked out Jorge Pazos in the fourth round.
Magdaleno [25-1, 10 KO’s] of Las Vegas, NV had a good night against Pazos [14-7-1, 8 KO’s] of Mexico. Diego demonstrated good defense as Pazos become the aggressor in the second round but ultimately Diego was able to counterpunch his way out. Next round Pazos wasn’t giving Diego any slack he was fighting a fight when a furies of punches thrown by Diego stunned Pazos and down he went. Pazos did managed to get up after what it appear he would stay down, also the referee made sure he was okay before continuing the fight. The fourth round Diego follow up with pressure and Pazos goes down by a shot to the body and take a knee as the referee count him out.
Another Magdaleno fought in the undercard, Jessie Magdaleno the younger brother of Diego with an undefeated record kept his winning record intact.
By Edgar Gonzalez / Founder and Publisher of MyBoxingFans.com
C.J. Ross is the only judge that scored the Mayweather-Canelo fight as a draw, 114-114. The other two judges scored it for Mayweather 116-112 (Dave Moretti) and 117-111 (Craig Metcalfe), giving the pound-for-pound king a majority decision victory.
After the fight boxing expert Teddy Atlas went on ESPN and said Ross’ score was a travesty and suggested she was a criminal.
Everyone in the arena was shocked by C.J.’s call … including Floyd Mayweather who mouthed the words, “What the f***” when the announcer revealed he won on a majority decision and not unanimous.
As expected, in the semifinals, the fix was in once again in Marlen Esparza’s bout with the Chinese boxer. When Marlen was down 3-2 after the first round, a round in which the Chinese boxer did absolutely nothing but wait and step back and occasionally throw a counter that missed, and never came close to landing a punch, I knew then they were going to “do” Marlen. Afterwards, when asked if she should have been more aggressive and tried even harder, Marlen made a poignant, insightful, and accurate comment, which was that if she took more risks and threw more punches, they would have had her down by even more. And that is a sad but truthful commentary on amateur boxing, and also explains why these bouts have utterly lost their entertainment value. The more you try to be aggressive against these boxers who look to wait and jump back and only throw quick arm-punch counters, the more the international judges will have you losing. So Marlen tried to play their game as best she could, but nevertheless, she was an American, which meant that if it was close she was going to lose. You damn near have to kill your opponent to win in this tournament.
( Former professional boxer, boxing historian and stable mate of Jerry Quarry)
In early 1999, I was watching ESPN, hoping to hear the result of a fight that had taken place earlier in the evening. When the sports news came on, I waited thru football scores, and golf, until the sportscaster finally said . . . “And now from the world of boxing”.
I expected a report on the fight. Nothing else going on in boxing at the time. Instead, I heard something that made me forget about the fight result I’d been waiting for. I still remember the words . . .”A sad note to report in boxing today, former heavyweight contender Jerry Quarry has died at the age of 53.” I was stunned.
I was aware that Jerry had not been doing well and suffered from Dementia pugilistica. I knew that he had been living with his mother Arawanda in a mobile home park near the Hemet area of Southern California and was under her care. Mutual friends from the past, such as former middleweight Mike Nixon, Jerry’s brother-in-law, had told me that Jerrycould no longer handle simple daily tasks, such as shaving. Jerry’s older brother Jimmy would help him with such things. I remember how sad it was to hear this a couple years back, and that Jerry would no doubt die young. However, I couldn’t imagine him dead at 53.
I wasn’t the only person surprised to hear of Quarry’s death. However, in my case it was something very personal. As a kid, all I wanted to do was become a boxer. Jerry Quarry helped make this possible. Jerry Quarry’s success and accomplishments are a part of boxing history. Being close to a boxer who won the National Golden Gloves Heavyweight title in 1965, and went on to fight for the World Heavyweight Championship as a pro, is a part of my history.
When I was twelve-years-old I had a dream that was a bit unusual for a middle class kid growing up in Burbank, California. I was going to be a professional boxer. I didn’t just want to be a pro fighter . . .I was going to be a pro fighter. I set a goal for myself and nothing was going to stop me. Nobody took me seriously, but it didn’t matter, I took myself seriously. However, this was not going to be easy. There were no boxing gyms in the Burbank area, or close by where I could start out. The YMCA didn’t have a boxing program and even if it had, I was looking for a place where real boxers trained, amateurs and pros.
In early 1965, the Western Regional Golden Gloves Championships were televised in the Los Angeles area and, naturally, I was glued to the TV. The heavyweight final was won by a 19-year-old from Bellflower named Jerry Quarry. Quarry scored a decision over Clay Hodges and would represent Los Angeles in the national tournament the following week in Kansas City. There was something special about this fighter and I couldn’t see anybody beating him in the Nationals. I was right.
When mega fights look to be on the horizon then falls off faster than Vanilla Ice, it’s usually because of money. This very well could be the case for Manny Pacquiao vs. Floyd Mayweather Jr. Any time you have mega fighters involved, you have mega egos involved also. Usually you won’t find a high caliber fighter who is willing to take the smaller portion of the purse. However, this is the only fight that makes logical sense not just financially, but for the sport itself. There is no denying that the sport of boxing has been slipping in the last decade. With high profile fighters fighting less and less and the promoters protecting their fighters, the fans miss the biggest fights available.