Julio Diaz Quits; Evander Holyfield Doesn't Know How To!

julio diaz14.10.07 - by James Slater: One of the weekend's big world title fights, the one at lightweight, between Juan Diaz and Julio Diaz, surprised me. The other, at heavyweight, between Sultan Ibragimov and Evander Holyfield didn't. Nor did what the loser had to say afterwards. The Diaz-Diaz fight surprised me in that the tough and capable Julio Diaz, the IBF 135 pound champ, wound up quitting on his stool after eight rounds.

While neither the Ibragimov-Holyfield fight or its aftermath shocked me in the slightest. Okay, I did feel Evander had a shot at winning a decision, the fact that he failed to do so was no upset, however. "The Real Deal's" post-fight comments came as no surprise either. That the sadly more disillusioned than ever former great cannot see that time has long since been called on his majestic career is, unfortunately, something we have all come accustomed to. Holyfield simply will not do the sensible and decent thing and retire..

As such, it looks extremely likely that he will be permitted to fight again and run the risk of losing yet more of his rapidly diminishing brain cells. As one boxing magazine writer said recently, maybe the only way to get Evander to stop boxing is for the fans to boycott his bouts and just stay away from the arena when he's fighting. The fact that Holyfield went the distance against WBO champ Sultan Ibragimov, in a fight in which he was never really badly hurt, makes it unlikely that his licence will be revoked as it was back when he lost to Larry Donald. It's hard to prevent a man from fighting when he is, to a degree at least, still somewhat competitive. Also, Evander remains a huge name in a fairly shallowly talented weight division. Let's face it, the soon to be 45 year old is going to fight again, it's almost a one hundred percent guarantee.

As for Julio Diaz and his capitulation, no-one is going to come down too hard on him for doing what he did, surely. He fought a game fight up until the sudden ending, but in his unification clash with rival champion (WBA and WBO) Juan Diaz, he was facing a man who would not take no for an answer. "The Baby Bull" threw punches he knew would get the desired result, his
absolute belief in them being as resolute as "The Kidd's" decision, upon recognising this fact also, to quit before simply taking more. Juan Diaz completely knocked the fight out of the older man, that's all there was to it. And when a man cannot fight anymore - at least to the point where he truly believes he can win - the sensible thing for him to do is bale out before getting yet more hurt put on his body and brain. No-one is applauding a quitter here, obviously, but at the same time doing the sensible thing is no bad thing. Julio Diaz clearly understands this way of thinking.

If only Evander Holyfield would somehow wake up from his stubborn dream of becoming a world champion again - an undisputed one at that - and think this way too.

Article posted on 14.10.2007

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