Boxing


'They call Him Joe': Win Over Hopkins Puts Calzaghe At Center Stage

hopkins calzaghe boxing21.04.08 - By Vivek Wallace, Photo HoganPhotos.com / Golden Boy Promotions --For nearly 15 years the United Kingdom held a secret. A secret that slowly began to spread from continent to continent amongst both believers and non-believers. What began as whispers would later evolve to growing shouts, however, America chose to continuously turn her back on this growing phenomenon, under the impression that there was no man strong enough to conquer her love. Well, Saturday night America had no choice but to listen as the man who beckoned her attention for quite some time performed in a way that would not be denied. That man....well, let's just say they call him 'Joe'. And this 'Joe' proved that he's no ordinary 'Joe' by doing something that few have. That was effectively disengage the man previously believed to be his most gravest moment; The equally enigmatic, yet still efficient Bernard "The Executioner" Hopkins.

For all this time many thought Calzaghe was just another face in the crowd, and although it came in an effort far from pretty, Saturday night proved to the world that Mr. Calzaghe is more than just another stepping stone across the transatlantic.. The pride of Wales is now the pride of many. Some may argue that Bernard Hopkins finally drank his last sip from the fountain of youth, and technically, that's what happened, however, there's nothing anyone can say to take away what was easily Calzaghe's most triumphant moment in the ring. It would have been great to see this matchup between the two fighters take place when both were in their prime, but now isn't the time to ponder on what could of been, but rather a time to acknowledge what is - hence the urban vernacular which states "It ain't where you're from, it's where you're at"! And currently, after spending nearly 15 years trying to protest his ability, Joe Calzaghe has found his place on top of the mountain where he's sure to enjoy the view. After his one and only trip to America, Calzaghe takes with him a bag full of her souvenir's. Souvenir's which include her glitz, her glamour, her attention from many camera's, her notoriety for setting new standards, and a reputation that removes all slander.

Few truly understand the watershed moment that just took place in the life of Joe Calzaghe. Likewise, few understand the great challenge associated with going to a foreign land and conquering that land's most prized possession. Now that Calzaghe's wildest dream has become a reality, none of us are sure how long it will last. Will Calzaghe take his 'goods', jump on his stallion, and ride off into the sunset? Or will he take on the new challenge of defending his current position amongst the sports elite? Some argue that Calzaghe should walk away from the sport, leaving his perfect record in tack. Others remain in the unsilent majority that want to see him continue his dominance. So as it stands, Calzaghe has a few tough decisions to make. As he ponders his future, he does it under the watchful eye of former Light Heavyweight champ Roy Jones Jr., who would provide a very interesting matchup. Having the two ring legends square off would be a very unique affair. Although some find Jones' better days behind him, it would be a huge spectacle to see what Calzaghe would look like against a guy who's speed rivals his own, and who's talent level is still marveled by the masses.

Discussions for the proposed matchup are already in 2nd gear with a tentative date set for November 15th in front of 50,000 plus in Cardiff Wales. Now that Jones' confidence is back, there could be no stage bigger to test his talent on than one the size of Millenium Stadium, featuring an opponent whose stature looms just as large. Until the wrinkles are all ironed out, we wait. But in the meantime, we celebrate the accomplishment of the sports newest proven global star. Not bad for a quiet guy from Newbridge, Wales, who taught American legend Bernard Hopkins that he can indeed be "beat by a white-boy".

(Got Questions or Feedback?: Write ESB's Vivek Wallace at vivexemail@yahoo.com or show some love at www.myspace.com/anonymouslyinvolved)

***Don't forget to checkout Wednesday's Left Hook Lounge Q&A mailbag***

***Late but very necessary condolences to the family of one of my favorite actors/people of all-time, Mr. Charlton Heston...R.I.P.***

Article posted on 22.04.2008



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