17.08.05 - By Jim Amato: Something needs to be done to protect the fighters. I could not agree more. I just did not feel that the NYSAC went about it in a proper manner. Even if the suspension is upheld, what is to stop Evander from boxing in a state that does not honor the ruling ? The door has been left ajar for Evander to do this if he so wishes. Aaron Pryor did this when he fought in Wisconsin some years back. Some states are not that strongly regulated. You know as well as I do that there are several boxers out there that are considered "career losers".
Some may even be decent fighters to a degree that are brought in to meet a local prospect with a very slim chance of winning. He comes in, takes his beating, gets paid (sometimes) and moves on to the next state. Bruce "The Mouse"Strauss made a career out of this. He was a good enough boxer to occasionally win one but more often then not he became a victim and helped to pad an aspiring fighter's record. There are so many boxers like this out there that are not even as accomplished as Strauss was that are plying their trade. "Tomato Cans" is what they are usually referred to in the business. The sport feeds off these less talented individuals. I just don't understand how they will be able to continue making a living and Evander can not.
I want to see Holyfield hang up the gloves. Even though he still looks like he's in great shape, it is obvious that the skills have diminished. If the NYSAC suspends Evander then I'm sure boxing writers across America could supply a list of boxers deemed not good enough to box anymore. Then it should weigh the information it receives and then do a uniform suspension. They should not be able to single out just one fighter.
I read a suggestion from someone that may help this situation to a point. He said not to suspend Evander but instead to veto certain opponents. Let's just say that they want to match Evander in his next fight with WBO champion Lamon Brewster or comebacking former WBO champion Corrie Sanders. He suggested to just not sanction those opponents. Years ago the British Boxing Board did something of that nature to Henry Cooper. Ol' Enry was going to meet WBA champion Jimmy Ellis. The BBB did not feel that this fight was in Henry's best interests so they refused to sanction it as a title fight. Well negotiations broke off and the bout fell through.
This may be a temporary solution at best. Eventually they would have to allow Evander to fight a lesser opponent. How much lesser ? Then will that put the "lesser" boxer in danger of being hurt by a former world's champion ? Even if the fight comes off and Evander wins he will more then likely take some degree of punishment. Is it not the whole point of NYSAC initial action to keep Evander from taking ANY more punches ?