During ESPN’s June 8th telecast between Kelly Pavlik and Scott Sigmon, commentator Teddy Atlas, speaking on the likelihood of an abbreviated ending, remarked, “Don’t go to your refrigerator; and if you do-walk backwards.”
In honor of President’s Day (February 20), this week’s quote comes to us courtesy of our nation’s 26th president, the quintessential Rough Rider himself, Theodore Roosevelt. Aside from advocating the use of “big sticks” as a source of conflict resolution, President Roosevelt, an avid boxing fan and star of such films as Night at the Museum and Night at the Museum II, also recognized the role that boxing played in developing character, courage, and accountability. He also respected and appreciated anyone with the willingness to climb between the ropes and subject themselves to the potential violence contained therein, and the following quote wonderfully captures that sentiment of admiration.
“It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat.”
This week’s quote comes to us courtesy of the incomparable (incorrigible?) heavyweight champion Mike Tyson, after he accepted an honorary doctorate degree from Ohio’s Central State University in 1989, and the quote itself was recently featured in the February 2012 edition of Ring Magazine in an article entitled The Good Fight, written by the esteemed Thomas Hauser.The guest commencement speaker, and then heavyweight champion, was reported to have remarked,
“I don’t know what kind of doctor I am; but watching all these beautiful sisters here, I’m debating whether I should be a gynecologist.”
A lot has been made about Antonio Margarito’s recent statement regarding his willingness to “die in the ring” if need be against Miguel Cotto, as well as Miguel Cotto’s rebuttal, in which he expressly made no such declarations.On the subject of making the ultimate sacrifice in the ring, this week’s quote comes from the always colorful former heavyweight champion Max Baer, and it concerns his sensible reasoning for yielding to Joe Louis in the 4th round of their 1935 bout.
“When I get executed, people are going to have to pay more than twenty-five dollars to watch it.”
During a recent Friday Night Fight telecast featuring junior middleweights Yudel Jhonson and Jose Miguel Torres, Joe Tesitore, commenting on Torres’ decision to don a celebratory sombrero despite a rather apathetic performance, stated,
“Jose Miguel Torres just did not put forth enough here tonight. Completely outclassed. Wearing that hat was perhaps the most aggressive decision he made all night.”
In response to the recent circulation of a viral video involving two drunken idiots, some boxing equipment, and a dose of poor decision making brought on by liquid courage, Comedy Central’s Daniel Tosh, the host and namesake of the show Tosh.O, was prompted to remark,
“The first rule of Fight Club is – please don’t die in my mom’s basement.”
Unfortunately, that is just too easy, and rather apathetic of me. So instead, I decided to include a second Larry Merchant quote, which was acquired, after much scouring, from the 1997, disgusting excuse of a fight between Henry Akinwande and Lennox Lewis. The fight contained so much grabbing and holding, that Larry was prompted to remark,
“This fight looks like a mating dance between two boa constrictors….and Mills Lane looks like an Oreo cookie.”
And finally, the #1 all-time “fit of rage” moment from Mr. Merchant occurred when a crazed spectator tried to interject his thoughts on Daniel Zaragoza’a split decision loss to Wayne McCullough during the post-fight interview after their fight in 1997. Actually words do not do it justice, so here again is a video so you can witness the insanity for yourself.
Four score and seven years ago, I am sure Larry could throw down with the best of them.
Gene Fullmer and his “brother by another mother,” Carmen Basilio, were mistaken for one another on so many occasions that it became almost futile for the two to repudiate claims made by clueless fans about the nature of their true identity.
Our Fightin’ Words: Quote of the Week is a result ofone such encounter, as Gene Fullmer, having been approached by a fan who failed to identify him correctly, agreed to the autograph seekers request only after asking, “How do you spell Basilio?”