Hagler vs Hearns Teaches Us What We Are Missing In Boxing Today
Let's take a few minutes and forget the hyped-up money grab that is the Mayweather vs McGregor fiasco.
Is it an entertaining idea? Sure.
Would I watch if they were offering it for free on ESPN? You bet.
Is it everything that's wrong with the sport of boxing today? Bingo.
Boxing has become about making a fortune evading your opponent and avoiding legitimate competition. Do you think Rocky Marciano was more focused on getting rich or participating in the sport he loved at the highest level? Do you think Sugar Ray Leonard ever came up with some phony steroid allegation to avoid having to step in the ring with Roberto Duran when he was at his scariest? Do you think Jake LaMotta spent half the match hugging his opponent or playing keep away while trying simply to score some points?
The answers to all of those questions are a resounding "no". Marciano enjoyed his riches, but he boxed for respect and love of the sport. Sugar Ray Leonard actively tried to get in the ring with "Hands of Stone" in spite of the fact he was the most vicious and terrifying man on the planet at the time. Jake LaMotta was referred to as "The Bronx Bull" because he bulled his way into opponents, allowing himself to sustain multiple blows in order to get close enough to take somebody's head off.
These guys had respect for the sport and, more important, respect for the fans. Do yourself a favor and watch the boxing match I have below. It's not long, but the 15 minutes you'll watch are important, because they show us exactly what we and the sport are missing out on today. I can honestly say that I've never seen an MMA encounter which could ever come close to "The Sweet Science" when it was at it's best. Let's all hope we can get back there some day.
A Fed Up Boxing Fan