Evander Holyfield Too Much For Brave Vinny Maddalone - Stops Him On Cuts In Three

evander holyfield18.03.07 - By James Slater: Well, Vinny Maddalone gave it a shot last night in Corpus Christi against legendary four-time heavyweight boxing king Evander Holyfield. But once again cuts proved to be a major handicap for the tough New Yorker. Many critics had said beforehand that Vinny was out of his depth and maybe Maddalone knew this himself. But the fight offered him the opportunity of a lifetime and he went for it, naturally. But it was not to be his night, as a bad clash of heads in the opening round - ruled to have been accidental by referee, Ruben Carrion - left Vinny in far worse shape than Evander.

Of course, this is not the first time Evander has used what is known nowadays among boxing fans as his “Third Glove,” his head. And though the clash was ruled as unintentional it’s a shame that practically all of “The Real Deal’s” fights have to have a head butt or two thrown in for good measure. Who knows, if the bad cut hadn’t happened so early in the fight, Vinny might have fared better. This is clutching at straws, however. The win was Evander’s and Vinny’s big chance - the biggest of his entire career - had gone.

He tried his best of course, as he always does, and really took some hurt before his corner-man, the great Al Certo, seeing that the damage to his boxer’s face was making the fight a hopeless cause, urged the ref to stop the bout. The time was two minutes and forty-eight seconds of round number three. Vinny was never off his feet, though. And though his vast number of fans - many of whom had left comments on this very boxing web site proclaiming that their man was going to cause the upset - may feel let down by the thirty-three year old, they have no cause to be. In world class terms Vinny and Evander are oceans apart, yet the brave club fighter, now 27-4 (19 KO’s) tried with all his might to bridge the huge gulf between he and “The Real Deal,” now 41-8-2 (27 KO’s).

The question is, what now? For Vinny retirement might be the best option. Hell, some critics were saying this BEFORE last night’s fight. Struggling as he had with the towering seven footer Julius Long in his last fight before Holyfield, the experts said out loud how quitting the sport would be the limited brawler’s safest option. And while I didn’t agree with them, seeing as how a hugely popular fighter like himself was always bound to get a big break at least once in his fighting life, and therefore Vinny had the right to box on until receiving it, maybe the gloves should be hung up now. Vinny could fight on, sure. But at a much lower level than he was competing last night will the same motivation ever be there? At the end of the day, the choice is Vinny’s.

As for Evander. He will carry on fighting until he gets what he wants. Namely another shot at the heavyweight title. And regaining a portion of the crown may not be quite beyond the forty-four year old. He can still punch, is still pretty fast and is still in fabulous physical shape. As for Evander’s dream of once again becoming the UNDISPUTED champion, though, that’s a huge long shot, at best. What seems reasonably clear, however, is that a shot at one or another of the four versions of the title will be offered to Holyfield in the coming months. With the momentum his, now three fight comeback, has garnered and with his enormous popularity and big name value, a title shot against the likes of either Briggs (or his successor) Maskaev (or his successor) or maybe even Klitschko shouldn’t shock too many by coming in the next few months. We will have to wait and see.

Let’s just hope that if and when Evander does find himself in the ring fighting to regain a belt, his “Third Glove” doesn’t have to raise its ugly,…. head?

Article posted on 18.03.2007

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