Thursday, October 29, 2009

Olympians, Borders & Guns

Seem like whenever I have to take a week off, we come back with a tremendous show. This week we've got IBO light heavyweight champ Chad Dawson and Freddie Roach.

I'm also going to talk about the Hall of Fame ballot. It was an incredibly weak field this year. One of the nominees is Naseem Hamed. I've already sent my ballot in so you won't affect my vote. But I want to hear your thoughts. Is Hamed a Hall of Famer? Vote and leave your comments.

As I've mentioned before this blog is also meant to give you a peek at my life in boxing.

Last week, I was in Laredo, TX announcing ShoBox. If any of you saw it, feel free to leave the snarky comments about my hair below. I deserve it. In my defense, I had to plaster my hair down with gel because I got the worst haircut of my life, right before I left. I looked like Balloon Boy's dad. Seriously.

Anyway, the problem has been solved and those of you watching DonKingTV this weekend will see my repaired coif back in all its glory.

Laredo was a weird place. Our hotel was literally a 30 second walk from the border crossing. The area around the hotel did not feel like the United States. From the merchandise in the stores, to the service in the hotel (and it was a nice place), I felt like I was already in Mexico.

The day before I arrived there was a big shootout between the Federales and the drug cartel, right at the border on the other side. Five people were killed.

The highlight of the trip was hanging out with Gary Russell Jr. You'll recall that he was the Olympian that passed out the day before his fight and wasn't able to box in the tournament. Even before that night, he was not too happy with his Olympic experience. From his standpoint, the coaches did more harm than good.

We walked around the town and at one point stopped in a store that sold guns and hunting equipment. Gary is an avid hunter. At that point, my phone rang. It was my wife. I told her I was hanging out with an Olympian in a gun store in Laredo.

At no point in my life did I expect that to be the answer to the question, "What are you doing right now?"

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Super 6 Comments

Dan Rafael is reporting that Jermain Taylor was taken to the hospital with a concussion and short term memory loss. Taylor has now suffered bad knockouts in 3 of his last 5 fights. Allan Green get ready. Your services are going to be needed.

I'll be surprised if Taylor finishes the tournament. If he still has his money, there is no reason for him to fight again. He had a career he can be more than proud of. But he's clearly on the downswing and the likelihood of him getting hurt again has increased substantially.

As far as Dirrell - Froch, I recorded it because I was out to dinner with friends. With 30 seconds to go in the 12th, my DVR stopped recording. I almost screamed at the TV, but it was 1:15 in the a.m. and if I woke the kids, I'd have had a worse night than Jermain.

Luckily Fightnews was on the job. Unfortunately the judges in England weren't. There is no way Carl Froch won 7 rounds of that fight. Dirrell didn't do himself any favors with all of the holding, but you can't convince me that Froch was more effective in 7 rounds of that fight.

When Dirrell was on the show last week, he said he could win a decision in England. He was wrong. He got screwed and so did I as I had Dirrell +145.

Reminder -- next week we'll be running a Best of Through the Ropes as I'll be on the road ring announcing ShoBox. Tune in to Showtime Friday night and Ropes will be back on the 30th.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Pretty in Pink

We've got former light heavy champ Glen Johnson booked for this week. I'm trying to convince him to live up to his Road Warrior nickname and get on 95 to come to the studio to co-host. We'll see if he feels like making the journey. Even if he doesn't, we'll have him for the last segment.

I'm also looking forward to speaking with former heavyweight champ Pinklon Thomas. He was on with us about 2 years ago and is great to talk to. He's got a rags-to-riches-to-rags-to-redemption story. Blew everything he had, including his career on drugs. Got sober and is now launching Project P.I.N.K. (Pride In Neighborhood Kids) to help at risk youth.

Pink is one of the good guys and considering all he's been through, is a perfect candidate to help kids stay off the streets and do something positive.

In fact, there are quite a few boxers and former fighters working with kids and for different causes that we'll talk about. Boxers get a bad rep, but guys like Andre Berto work with the Boys and Girls Club, Oscar De La Hoya has donated tons of cash and built a youth center, etc.

Pink and Glen will take your questions so call or email in.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

I Love My Chin

No, the title is not my response to Gus Johnson calling me good looking, it was Andre Dirrell's response to my question as to whether he has a good enough chin to win the tournament.

Igor, a listener, disagrees. Here's why.

I believe this is the only time Dirrell has been down as a pro. He won every round of the fight other than the one in which he was floored.

Thanks to Igor for proving the link.

Super 6 UPDATE

Just confirmed Andre Dirrell for the first segment.

Super 6

It always sucks when you have a personal relationship with an athlete but the gatekeepers get in the way. I have no doubt that had I been able to reach Andre Dirrell personally, he'd be on the show tonight. I've ring announced Andre and his brother several times. We always talk at the fights and he said he'd be happy to be on the show anytime.

I wanted to have him on before he leaves for Europe next week to take on Carl Froch on the 18th. However, I had to go through the proper channels, which didn't work out.

No worries, it will still be a great show. Showtime's Gus Johnson will make his Through the Ropes debut to talk about the tournament. He's the consummate professional and I know he'll have some strong opinions. Speaking of strong opinions, we'll check in with IBO President Ed Levine who will discuss ways in which boxing can be fixed as well as his thoughts on the new boxing promoters group.

Tune in tonight at 9 ET