New Found Credibility of Nazim Richardson

By John Ternenyi - There are many great trainers in the sport of boxing. Legendary trainers such as Freddie Roach and Emmanuel Steward have led many great fighters to World Championships and International Boxing Hall of Fame inductions. Currently there is a trainer who does not have the fame, or recognition of some of these esteemed trainers, but after January 24, 2009, he will undoubtedly have the same reputation as a Freddie Roach or Emmanuel Steward..

His name is Nazim Richardson. For many years, Richardson has been the assistant trainer for Bernard “The Executioner” Hopkins. When Hopkins fired Bouie Fischer, Nazim Richardson stepped up to the plate. Richardson’s first test as head trainer was Bernard Hopkins’s rematch win Jermaine Taylor, the man who six months earlier upset the veteran for the right to be called the Undisputed Middleweight Champion. Richardson failed his first test, albeit controversial, in leading Bernard Hopkins to victory.

Nazim Richardson proved that failing to lead Bernard Hopkins to the promise land was the exception rather than the rule. Ever since then, Richardson has been golden. He led Bernard Hopkins to the Light Heavyweight division where he usurped the king of the division Antonio “Magic Man” Tarver. After this fight, Bernard Hopkins defeated Ronald “Winky” Wright to a unanimous decision. Nazim Richardson, unfortunately suffered a mild stroke, therefore he was not present during the Hopkins vs. Calzaghe bout. These two fights were impressive, but they were outdone by these two recent performances.

Bernard Hopkins was the underdog against rising star and Middleweight Champion Kelly Pavlik. Kelly Pavlik was undefeated with impressive knockout victories over Edison Miranda and Jermaine Taylor. Whether anybody agrees with the ringside judges or not, Bernard Hopkins has had problems with faster, stronger opponents who do not let Hopkins’s style deter them from trying to out work him, i.e. Jermaine Taylor and Joe Calzaghe. Not only did Bernard Hopkins defeat Pavlik, but he dominated him. In my opinion Hopkins won every round in this fight. The other fight was the recent Margarito vs. Mosely match. Margarito was the current number one fighter in the welterweight division by destroying Miguel Cotto via eleventh round TKO. “Sugar” Shane Mosley is similar to Miguel Cotto. Both are similar sizes and similar styles. Nazim Richardson noticed Antonio Margarito’s weaknesses and exploited them. He laid out a perfect game plan against Margarito. This was perhaps Mosley’s greatest performance in years, as was Bernard Hopkins’s performance against Kelly Pavilk.

As much respect I have for the boxers, I have just as much respect for the trainers. The trainers are the brains behind the fighters. They help the boxer lay out a game plan. When something goes wrong with the game plan during the fight, it is the trainer’s job to tweak or adjust the game plan. Nazim Richardson has proven to be just as great as any world class trainer. Nazim Richardson ought to be proud of his fighters’ performances.

Article posted on 26.01.2009

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