Rusty Rubin is a veteran boxing writer
What just happened to the USA Olympic Boxing Team? The answer is much the same as to what has happened to boxing in the United States. Boxing in America is in a comatose state and although I’m convinced it will survive, the answer would have to include three questions, how, when and where?
All three questions will have to be answered for our sport to make a return to prominence.
First, to deal with the how part: America must develop a system to teach the amateurs the sweet science. Most trainers only teach offense, and the ‘hit and not be hit’ teachings of that aspect of the sport have been ignored. Fans tend to want to see blood and knockouts and not necessarily competitive bouts.
Besides the passing of many top trainers in recent years, (fortunately there are some left), we have lost far too many gyms for the youngsters to train. Part of that is because of the economy, part is interest in other sports like mixed martial arts, which actually has kept some gyms open, but boxing isn’t enough to do it on its own. That part should change over time.
Sadly, other young men and women are resorting to more financially rewarding, some illegal professions. It doesn’t require a degree in rocket science to know you can make more money selling drugs on street corners( which is also safer than getting your brains knocked in), then in the squared circle.
The second question is when will boxing return? The answer here is more difficult to answer. America’s Olympic team continues to struggle and shows little sign of bouncing back to life soon. Without the amateurs and no longer having many big names, boxing will continue to struggle. Can anyone out there seriously name three big name drawers in our sport?
Even if that could be done, would the major matches which fans crave ever happen. As long as fighters continue to protect their undefeated records, that answer will be no. The match-ups the fans really want to see like Mayweather – Pacquiao will never happen because with limited talented competition to face, why risk losing that zero and injury as well. Pacquiao is willing to take the risk, Mayweather is not. That’s his choice and his right, but while it may protect his earning potential, it does not endear himself to American fight fans.
We also must take into account the bad decisions that outrage the fans and clearly do nothing to bring new fans.
Finally, the ultimate question, when will boxing face its needed revival? That is an impossible question to answer, but boxing has been down this road before and is still around. It will continue to survive, but no one knows for sure when it will surface again as a major sport. Perhaps when the questions asked are all answered, we will return to a significant position in the sports industry. Remember boxing has been around since ancient times, and has always been cyclical.
In short we need more gyms, more TV exposure and less bad decisions and perhaps some new ideas that do not detract from past but add to the future of the once and hopefully still great sport of boxing.
As for a Federal Commission, I see no way that can do more than add another layer or government interference. It may help overturn obviously bad decisions, but it would no nothing to improve the popularity (or lack of) of boxing.
Hopefully, the old guard will be around long enough to help the next generation deal with and improve the image of the sport.
Glove 2 Glove:
Prayers asked for the souls of Glove2Glove member, world class referee and friend, Elmo Adolph who passed away at age 78; Malibongwe Thoba, South African young boxer, 23, was killed in a shooting incident; Michael Dokes, David Allen historian and friend of boxing from the UK; Richard “Tiger” Evatt; and world class trainer William “Bill” Miller:
Former heavyweight champ Ken Norton can use your prayers to recover from a serious illness. Prayers are also requested for boxing guy Reginald Boucher, father in law of boxing writer Keith Teciera. Reginald is battling cancer.
Prayers for the return to health of outstanding boxing guys Alex “The Bronx Bomber” Ramos. Alex has done much to improve the welfare of retired boxers. Your prayers for him have worked in the past. Alex is still facing some serious obstacles.
Young ex-champ Paul Williams was involved in a motorcycle accident and needs your prayers for a full recovery.
Prayers also requested for the recovery of former champ Rocky Lockridge.
Please continue to pray for my Aussie mate and Glove2Glove member John MacDougall, who had to deal with the recent passing of his wife of many years Gwen. John is also recovering from hip replacement surgery.
On behalf of these great fighters who have given their all in our great sport, we thank you for your ongoing prayers.
Do you know of any boxing people in need of spiritual uplifting and/or prayers? Just drop us a line. Membership to our prayer group is free to all and no one will ever contact you except for other prayer requests. Your name will not suddenly appear on anyone’s mailing list. In short, there is absolutely no obligation. Every prayer request is most welcome and I know the recipient will appreciate it.
Why? Because it’s healing to know that other people care, even about people they don’t know, and have the knowledge that God listens!
To join the Glove2Glove prayer group, or just request much needed prayers, drop Dave Wilcox a line at email@example.com.
Glove2Glove, which has been a long-time integral part of the recently defunct Ringsports.com magazine and website. It is a program I wish to have continued a long after I have left the sport and this earth. I want to thank Dave and Deborah Wilcox, who have offered to take over the program and promised to continue it indefinitely. This generous offer means a lot to me. We always welcome new members.***
Thanks and God bless.***
Rusty Rubin, award winning managing editor of Ringsports.com as well as now defunct Nevada Boxing and Ringsports Magazine, is the author of three highly acclaimed boxing books! “Woozel, Boxing and Me”, “Off the Canvas” and “Billy Soose, the Champion Time Forgot” co-authored by Tom Donelson. These books are all available at Authorhouse.com, and all major book retailers. They are all more than worth the small purchase price, or contact me via this website for a personally autographed copy at a small extra shipping charge. All proceeds from these books go to fight cancer.
RUSTY WOULD LIKE TO URGE ALL HIS FRIENDS TO LIST THE FOLLOWING INFO ON YOUR SOCIAL MEDIA PAGE AS WELL AS YOUR E-MAIL. “HAVING BEEN BLESSED WITH SO MANY GREAT AND CARING PEOPLE IN MY LIFE, I HAVE CHOSEN NOT TO GET INVOLVED WITH NETWORKING; I’M JUST TOO DAMN OLD FOR THAT”.
HENCEFORTH, (or at least for the current quarter) ALL PROFITS FROM THE SALE OF ANY OR ALL OF THESE BOOKS WILL GO TO THE SUSAN G. KOMAN FOUNDATION, AND BE USED TO FIND A CURE FOR BREAST CANCER. . I ALSO CHALLENGE ALL OTHER JOURNALISTS, BOXING OR OTHERWISE, TO DO WHAT THEY CAN TO SUPPORT ME IN THIS EFFORT. IT’S ALSO CHANCE TO CHANGE THE PUBLIC OPINION OF THE PRESS AND OUR SPORT, AS WELL AS DOING SOMETHING REALLY IMPORTANT FOR THE FUTURE OF OUR WORLD.
Together we may be able to find a cure for this dread disease and result in a much needed knockout win for the sport of boxing. Here’s a wonderful chance for you to enjoy some good reading for a great cause. It’s also a way to avoid the crowded stores by doing your Christmas shopping early.
“The sale of any or all of these very enjoyable books will help an important cause (breast cancer research). I personally ask everyone, if they do nothing else, to please pass this information along whatever social network sites you use. Simply enjoy a good book and help a great cause!
Please take note that my next book will be about “MIRACLES” PERSONAL, OR OTHERWISE, and I would appreciate any submissions you may deem worthy. Of course your privacy (names) can and will be withheld by request.
I now have some time to try to finish this latest work, which, God willing, will bring the world so much closer to finding a cure for cancer as well as improve the lives of others. Please send me your miracles at firstname.lastname@example.org
Please allow me to recommend, three other great books, the “Arc of Boxing” by Mike Silver and “My Life among the Icons” by Johnny Ortiz, “My Call to the Ring” by another friend and classy former lady boxer, Deidre Gogarty.
In these hard economic times, any or all of these books will make an excellent and inexpensive presents to the boxing fan(s) in your life. They are especially appreciated gifts if the recipient is tired of watching re-runs of sit-coms and the far-less than significant reality shows.
Where’s the “Gillette Cavalcade of Sports” when you need it? Make your friend or loved one ‘look sharp’, ‘feel sharp’ and be ‘sharp.’ So how are you fixed for books? You’d better check’ to parrot an old commercial.
I now have some time to try to finish my latest work, which, God willing, will bring the world so much closer to finding a cure for cancer. Saving or prolonging just one life, takes us a step closer to finding that cure. Please send me your stories about miracles at email@example.com
You and the book-gift recipient will be glad you made the right choice (or the write choice)!***
Finally, “My 2012 New Year’s resolution was to spend the rest of my life helping others, and I really need everyone’s help to do that.. Please step into the ring with me to add power to all the voices that are crying out for a cure for dread diseases.
Keep punching, always….Rusty