Super (Annuation) Fights

By John Smart - ‘Can I please get a meaningful, well matched boxing bout that actually has some credibility’. - This was one of the overwhelming sentiments made by the local punter when watching the Green/Siaca farce at the pub last Wednesday night.

First it was a washed up Roy Jones Jnr lasting about a minute against Danny Green, then Roy again with Bernard Hopkins battling away with nothing more than love taps and then the last straw was a 47 year old Evander Holyfield trying to increase his super annuation stopping another washed up has been in Francois Botha. Next we will be seeing Azumah Nelson V Jeff Fenech……..oh, we just did!

Similar to NBA stars being rested before the play offs or Manchester United resting their best for a Carling Cup fixture we as the fan deserve much more than a diluted product that is either a total mismatch or of the quality of a couple of drunk brawlers in a bar.

Quite simply, boxing as a whole is the loser.

The problem within is that although these greats of the fight game bring in a huge amount of publicity, it is largely of the negative variety.

Each time another one of these bouts occurs another retired boxer will come out of the woodwork thinking they are ready to relive old times and to cash in when really they are contributing to the situation.

Shannon Briggs is the latest to make this move. Fair play to them for earning a buck to secure their futures, but are these fights really going to define their legacy? Tarnished might be a more accurate description.

Boxing is supposed to be an form based on a combination strength, technical ability, aggression, poise, heart and tremendous fitness.

The above mentioned are being sold to the public as Pay Per View blockbusters fights but in reality disrespect the fans.

These guys are supposed to role models and the inspiration of the new generation of fighter.

Now when I ask a young kid down at the gym what he thought of Roy Jones Jr (obviously too young to know how good he was in his prime) he thinks that he is ‘a bit of a joke’.

We all know that this wasn’t the case but the kid doesn’t.

Not only is Mr Jones reputation diminished but so is the entire sport…..but that’s ok because he just got another $4 million.

Golf and tennis has a seniors tour for their washed up stars. Maybe it’s time for boxing to have the same.

I am not sure what the answer is, but I do know that the fans want to watch the best, and lately, this just hasn’t been the case.

Article posted on 22.04.2010

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