So I’ve been wanting to write something about sports and since I’m a southern boy and college football is my favorite sport that would seem the natural one… but I’m gonna save that for another time and write about a sport that probably noone that reads this watches or gives a crap about: Boxing.
In a visceral, almost guilty way, I love boxing. I don’t give a crap about the Klitschkos and whoever they are currently beating up on…I like real boxing…the lower weight classes with latinos from every country and black kids from poor areas and even some armenians thrown in here and there for fun. Guys that are going in that ring both because they love it, and because if they lose their families might starve.
If I were anywhere near the level of a writer as him, I would love to write about boxing the way that Hemingway did about bullfighting, how a bloodsport can be both brutal and beautiful at the same time.
I love most everything about a boxing fight..the trashtalking before the fight…how the fighters pretend they are going to fight at the weighin…the ludicrous outfits and songs they walk into the ring to.
I love how you can tell how big budget a fight is by how attractive the ring girls are..whether they hired Michael Buffer or Jimmy Lennon to announce or just some random guy.
I love the announcements of the fighters where you hear that one kid is from some cool sounding place like Culiacán, Sinaloa, Mexico and he has some crazy nickname. I love the fights where there’s a Puerto Rican guy going up against a Mexican guy and the crowds are waving flags and going crazy like it’s a world cup game.
I don’t mind the Paquiaos and Mayweathers of the world, but give me a fight between some American or Latino kids that I’ve never heard of and I’m happy. I love that some of the best fights are between guys only the diehards have ever heard of..and how unlike in MMA…you just can’t afford a loss in boxing.
I love how in Mexico boxing has a code of machismo where even if you’re getting beaten up by a better fighter, you never give up…that you can get as much respect for taking punishment as giving it.
And in the end, I just love the fights…not all of them…often not many of them. I have HBO and Showtime basically just for a few of their shows and for boxing. I don’t get into the pay per view things b/c like I said, I like the lesser name guys mostly anyhow…so I watch allll the Showtime and HBO fights..even the undercard ones that they show on some other random Showtime channel.
As the commentators say: styles make fights. So there’s plenty of fights where not much happens and one guy just runs around or clinches the whole time. But when you get two evenly matched guys that have the right styles…and frankly the cojones…a fight can be one of the most exciting things you’ll ever see.
The mere fact that someone would walk into a ring where his job is to knock someone unconscious and the other guy’s job is the exact same..seems crazy in today’s concussion era…but when you get two guys that are not only willing to go in the ring but to lay it all on the line, there’s nothing like it.
So yeah, I’m a bloodsport fan, and I feel guilty about rooting for or against guys that are most likely doing themselves longterm damage, but no more so than I do when watching a football game. And for my money there’s very few football games that can match the level of excitement of the last few rounds of the Corrales/Castillo fight…which I’ll try to find on youtube and link in a min. If you can watch that and not get your blood pumping then I understand, but we are definitely different. (For some reason it won’t let me embed but the youtube link is copacetic, and it’s only 3 and a half mins long so worth a click I’d say. BTW, Corrales died in a motorcycle accident a few years later. Sad ending to one of the gutsiest fighters I’ve ever seen)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=poqdHSkElh0 (Corrales/Castillo Round 10)