Friday, May 02, 2008

Standing Pat

The news (admittedly jaw-dropping to those of us who knew him) that the late boxing writer Pat Putnam fabricated his military history -- it seems he did not spend 17 months in a POW camp during the Korean War, did not earn four Purple Hearts and the Navy Cross, and indeed did not even serve in the Marine Corps, as he always claimed he did -- should not be grounds for the Boxing Writers of America to remove his name from their award for perseverance. After all, that Pat could keep telling that story every day for 50 years is nothing if not a monument to perseverance.

Besides, it could have been worse. He could have been a real Marine impersonating a boxing writer....

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

HBO & De La Hoya Throw Boxing Fans A Bone

This coming Saturday night former six division title-holder Oscar De La Hoya (38-5) will once again be fighting as a welterweight. In a fight that amounts to nothing more than a "see I can win a fight" exhibition, Oscar will face former Super-featherweight champ, Steve Forbes (33-5). Forbes, has been at his best fighting at 130. In his last meaningful fight he lost a unanimous decision to Demetrius Hopkins for the USBA Junior welterweight title. So I don't expect to see Steve at his best fighting at 147.

This fight serves both De La Hoya and Forbes great financially, although much more so for Oscar obviously. The purpose of the fight is HBO's way of throwing boxing fans a bone by showing De La Hoya for free, and to provide him a chance to win in an impressive fashion. In other words the De La Hoya-Forbes bout marks the official beginning of the selling of De La Hoya-Mayweather II. Forbes is there to provide Oscar a foil with a name and garner his biggest payday for getting stopped for the first time in his career. Not that stopping Forbes should be considered a Herculean task by De La Hoya, being that he's naturally bigger and stronger than Forbes.

The minute De La Hoya has his hands raised after defeating Forbes, and he will, we'll begin hearing why he has a more realistic chance to beat Mayweather this coming September. First we'll here how the fight with Forbes was perfect to help ready him for Floyd Mayweather, which sounds plausible, despite Mayweather and Forbes having nothing in common other than being professional fighters. Then Oscar will talk about how he fought Mayweather wrong the first time and knows what he has to do this time. It will be said how the first fight was only a split decision loss for him and by just a few adjustments in the corner this time will be the difference and why he'll win. Shortly after De La Hoya is finished talking to either Larry Merchant or Max Kellerman, Steve Forbes will be yesterdays news. So I hope that he's making a ton of money, and I don't think it'll be a bad thing if for some un-forseen reason the talk is about Forbes next fight, and De La Hoya being yesterdays news.

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