Front and Center: Brother Nazim (Naseem) Richardson

By Ted Sares - …our camp usually runs smooth with Bernard because of his lifestyle. He comes to camp in great shape, so there’s never really any concern about weight. It’s just about preparing him for the task that lies ahead…--Nazim Richardson

…he’s (Richardson) not trying to change me or trying to switch up, just recreating all the stuff that I already know…You know with Nazim, he trains fighters that are amateurs and professionals. So he has both backgrounds and sometimes when we turn pro we start forgetting different things about some of the things that got us to where we were at as the champions. --Sugar Shane Mosley (from Dave Sholler, January 23, 2009,

When Sugar Shane Mosley entered the ring against Antonio Margarito, it was with an unfamiliar face in his corner, new trainer Brother Nazim Richardson. But savvy boxing fans knew that this was the same trainer who devised the strategy that worked so well for 43-year old Bernard Hopkins when he upset Kelly Pavlik last year.

Richardson, who trains his son, the streaking Rock Allen (14-0), has been a member of the Hopkins team for some time and had taken over for Bouie Fisher (who ostensibly had been fired by Hopkins prior to the second Jermaine Taylor fight). However, when he suffered a slight stroke, he was replaced by Freddie Roach to handle Bernard’s fight with Winky Wright.

With Richardson back and in “The Executioner”’s corner against the favored Pavlik, Hopkins, with his incomparable ring savvy, fought a disciplined and focused fight beating Pavlik to the punch throughout and winning convincingly.

Mosley’s win over the Tijuana Tornado was a total bloodletting He also came in disciplined and totally focused (despite seemingly daunting distractions), throwing repeated rights mixed with fast combinations, and outworking Margarito to the body. Then, when Margarito went after him, Sugar Shane would tie him up preventing any sustained attack. In short, he exploited Margorito’s one-dimensional attack right up until the devastating and shocking end.

Thus, Richardson, heretofore a low-profile but highly respected boxing man out of Philadelphia, has now guided two fighters to monster wins that were marked by their strategic excellence. And two wins in which his fighters won virtually every round. With great technically sound boxers like Mosley and Hopkins, Richardson didn’t have to overhaul anything nor teach them much of anything; he found holes in their opponents and then tweaked and adjusted as necessary. He sure knew how to do it. While both Pavlik and Margarito had youth, power, and workrate on their side, Richardson deftly muffled those advantages by exploiting their weaknesses of lack of speed and versatility.

Curiously, not much comes up when one googles Boxrec Boxing Encyclopedia under Nazim Richardson; heck, I couldn’t even come up with a photo of Brother Nazim.

Look for that to change.

Article posted on 25.01.2009

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