David Tua - Is It Over?

By James Slater: Heavyweight powerhouse David "The Terminator" Tua has now been out of the ring for over one year. It was September of 2007 when the Samoan slugger took out the limited Cerrone Fox in just two rounds, and the soon-to-be-36-year-old all but vanished since. The Fox win marked the 7th straight win for Tua since his March 2003 draw with Hasim Rahman, this bout being the last meaningful one in "The Tuaman's" career. The question is, will the rematch with Rahman prove to be the last meaningful fight in Tua's career, period?

David TuaThere was talk, quite a bit of it, of Tua taking on unbeaten Mexican/American hope Chris "The Nightmare" Arreola. The word, according to promoter Cedric Cushner, was that Tua was going over the money issues attached to such a fight, but was definitely interested. So were the fans. But now a Tua-Arreola clash looks doubtful. The devastating puncher who brought unbridled excitement to the heavyweight division in the 1990's and early 2000s, but never managed to win a world title, has shown no recent interest in fighting anyone.

After now having had over a year out, Tua would probably need a tune-up before going in with any kind of legitimate threat such as Arreola. But therein lies the problem; Tua gets a rust remover of a win under his belt, or maybe two, but then leaves it too long to be able to capitalise with the taking of a big fight. He's done this in the past and he's done it again with his latest inactive spell. Three fights taken in reasonably quick succession last year made it seem Tua was serious about giving it one more go at reaching the top before his career was over. But after the third win (two of them coming by KO, and with Tua's weight getting lower and lower in each bout) the fighter the fans continue to talk about with respect and hope for the future chalked up his newest idle spell. What gives?

If anyone knows - be that Tua's manager, any of his close friends, any members of his family, or David himself - I sure wish they'd get in touch with someone and let us all know. It is testament to his ability at making the fans happy that Tua is even spoken of today. Genuinely awesome and seemingly a sure-fire world champion back when he was wrecking John Ruiz inside 20-seconds, maybe people feel Tua has/had more to do before hanging up the gloves, and that's why they still keep hoping he'll make his way to the ring for at least one more big fight. There is a sense that Tua failed to live up to his full potential and that he can, even now, make amends.

There is still time at age 36 (In November) and an in-shape David Tua could very well beat a number of today's top guys. But the clock is ticking, and has been for the past twelve months. Come on, David, lets the fans who admire you know - is it over, or not?

Article posted on 02.10.2008

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