The Humorous World of Boxing’s Characters

Friend of the pod and Patreon member Matt Dobson recalls some of the great characters in this crazy sport.

The humorous world of boxing. Rewind several weeks and we were treated to an absolute treat from the boxing Gods – we had a midweek special of Inoue displaying his greatness followed by a master class from Bud Crawford vs a fellow P4P star in Errol Spence to highlight what a special fighter he truly is. When boxing delivers it delivers in a way that few sports can rival. I’m a big fan of the mid-week cards as well – definitely something to do during work hours.

Fast forward the following week and we had boxing being an absolute shit-show again – #GameChanged or has it really? We had Dillian Whyte fail his 4th drug test for PEDs, 1 in kickboxing, 1 for an OTC supplement in his early days, 1 vs Rivas (albeit according to source know only as ‘x’ he’s heard Rivas has failed a drugs test) and finally his latest fail in the week leading up to the AJ rematch.

Dillian Whyte failed a test and so did Rivas…allegedly

Hearn was talking his usual shite and AJ fought a man who’s pushing 40 and was fighting in front of about 12 people the prior Saturday and AJ still managed to stink out the place. In the space of a week we saw the best and worst of boxing, the only saving grace was seeing Hearn squirm as his DAZN deal evokes memories of Setanta & Boxnation, minus the good fights.

Accordingly, I thought I would have a look at some of the funnier characters in boxing. There are a few that constantly make me laugh and not because of their quick wit or ability capture an audience the way Hatton could in his prime, they make me laugh because of their uniqueness, a blend of insanity, confidence and generally not giving a fuck.

Kevin Johnson: In the build up to his 2012 fight with Tyson Fury – a big Mick promotion, I remember watching the build up on Channel 5 (for non-UK viewers C5 is regarded as a pretty obscure free TV station) the build up consisted of Johnson playing the piano with Tyson Fury stood next to him singing away. Possibly the most bizarre pre-fight build up I’ve seen in 30+ years watching boxing – still recall thinking WTF am I watching here.

Off on a good note: Fury and Kingpin played to the cameras

Even his fighting style made me laugh – Johnson always reminded me of Homer Simpson’s boxing career, essentially do nothing and hope his opponent tires.

I do wonder what they did in his training camps? Practice getting punched for 12 rounds? Always a solid bet for a points loss in his prime which despite his prime being questionable we can say it was a good 10+ years ago. Not to be deterred he’s now a Russian citizen, fighting this weekend in Russia and out of respect for Russia’s leader he’s changed his name Kevin Vladimirovich and wore a Putin t-shirt to the weigh in. For all his antics, ‘bars’, a career spanning 20+ years, his randomness always makes me chuckle.

Carl Froch: I have an affinity for Froch, in the era of elite boxers fighting once or twice a year, big fights struggling to get made, he fought an absolute murder’s row of world class fighters – he even managed to get Yousef Mack in the ring (low-brow humour).

Despite this he was very much a Trump’esque character – you either loved him or thought he was an idiot. The build up to Groves was hilarious; you got to see what a spiteful person Froch really was. Blaming the Ash cloud for his defeat to Kessler is an ATG excuse. Known as an astute businessman he always struck me as a cheap bastard, the onion rings story is a funny example of this.

I enjoyed his commentary on Sky – he would clearly turn up for the paycheck, no idea what was going on or who was fighting, and just throw out generic insights while letting the rest of the matchroom brigade sing praises of the matchroom fighter. Inevitably, Froch would then start talking about himself.

Tight: Froch refuses to pick up the bill

’80,000’ fans – this has wound so many people up over the years and frankly I’m all for it, he can’t help but drop it in every time a camera is put in his face, I’m sure he knows he’s trolling at this stage. It was so beautifully dropped in during his interview with Floyd Mayweather I do wonder if he did it to win a bet, Mayweather looking at him like ‘who the fuck is this guy’ still makes me laugh.

Even post-matchroom he seems to have gone off-piste: slating AJ’s shitty performance, slating McGregor and bragging on camera about knocking people out in pubs, and the post boxing nose job to highlight that those insults over the years over his bent nose did in fact get to him.

An honourable mention to Leo Santa Cruz, this time ten years ago we saw Uncle Al’s PBS starting to take shape. He took advantage of Oscar’s crumbling golden boy promotions as Oscar slid into drink, drugs, prostitutes and lingerie (it happens to the best of us). The PBC began signing up various talent which I’d hoped would lead to big fights being made. What happened was the big stars got paid a fortune to fight infrequently vs inferior competition. Leo Santa Cruz embraced this in style – a legit world champ, fighting absolute dross, while simultaneously asking silly money to fight Rigo.

Quids In: Leo all about that cash

LSC’s career became so frustrating to watch but he redeemed himself in my eyes with one of the most underrated one liners. We think of boxing being for glory, legacy, being the best of your era, yet when they asked him and two others what they fight for (apologies I’ve forgot  the other two names) it went something along the lines of: greatness, legacy and to the LSC – in a line that could be from a Will Ferrell movie, ‘I just want the money’ with a bemused look on his face – like it was a stupid question. Fair play to him.

Despite being a brutal sport, I do like to appreciate some of the underrated characters we get to see.

Matt D

BOTWs for Sunday, February 28, 2021

eddie hearn clothes

Okolie trying to rival Bellew in the book stakes

Ruiz won’t want the smoke off ThC DmT

LDBC having fits as we speak

Yes, the Greatest Of All Time retires

BOTW to the lads for getting photoshop spoofed

Back on Mick’s £1.99 PPVs for you

Eddie dressing in his pyjamas

Eddie again…

Yep, you guessed it – #EveningEddie

BOTWs for Sunday, February 21, 2021

What a tattoo and what a great BOTW

He was fine, when he woke up the next morning

McCall and Rahman were journeyman according to Mr Saturday Night Boxing

Can see why Bean is in to the netball

AB getting an unfair shake and Maidana’s gloves were loaded LOL

Life biting McComb hard

Shame Josh Kelly can’t dominate the elite like the Bomber

BOTWs for Sunday, February 14, 2021

Mike Breelan feeling the wrath of the Doctor

Lowe undressed and hands rape ready

Paddy gonna end up with a horse’s head on the pillow if he’s not careful

Rob’s DAZN subscription paying off as a smart investment

The first man since the last one you picked to beat him, Anthony?

Mosley’s found love again. Get the pre-nub sorted out, lad.

BOTWs for Sunday, February 7, 2021

Bomber burning off the baby weight

No idea what’s going on here but Shakur seems to be enjoying himself anyway

Can see WBC Moro running around in a pair of these

Matty: No love or joy in his life right now – so true

Assuming that applies to the Mrs, Tone?

Completely agree, Ant. Hate it when people do that…

These comparisons are ridicuous! So we heard from a source anyway

BOTWs for Sunday, January 24, 2021

Tony Bellew book cover

Just leave Bellew alone to write books

“Half worrier” – she should be worried with people like him about

Losing a couple of early rounds is life and death apparently

Surprised only 3+ years have escaped Hatton’s memory banks given his lifestyle

Nopa … just, nope.

Think you need to find a new sport, Darshan

Well they’re both, British, black and heavyweights so maybe that’s what he means

The gift that keeps on giving – Tony, what a legend

BOTWs for Sunday, January 17, 2021

Devin Haney compares himself to Floyd Mayweather…

Ebanie Bridges thirst squad in full swing

Could see the British Hair Clinic jumping on this soon

Casuals call for £100-plus Pay-Per-Views #ThankYouEddie

No idea what’s going on with poor old Nathan Cleverly

Don King still around in 2020, doing Don King things

BOTWs for Sunday, January 10, 2021

Ryan Garcia’s dad gets a unique compliment

Adrien Broner all set for ring return. It’ll be different this time…apparently

Adam Smith creating a bullshit narrative. Nothing changes.

What a bizarre account and a bizarre question

Tesco Joe on the WBC shortlist for Trainer of the Year

Coyle turning in to the new Eddie Hearn

IFL’s ‘Brutally Honest’ clickbait titles go global

Las Vegas KO: Crawford stops Brook in four rounds

terence crawford kell brook poster

Kell Brook’s career at the highest level effectively ended in Las Vegas on Saturday night when he was stopped in the fourth-round by WBO welterweight champion Terence Crawford

Brook made a bright start, catching his orthodox opponent with stiff jabs and the occasional right hand. Once Crawford (37-0, 28 KOs) switched southpaw the pattern swiftly changed.

Crawford caught the Sheffield man with a right hook that sent him into the ropes, prompting a count from referee Tony Weeks. Moments later Brook (39-3, 27 KOs) was covering up on the ropes, offering nothing in return, which led to Weeks’ intervention.

The judges’ scorecards at the time of the stoppage: Patricia Morse Jarman 29-28 (Crawford), Dave Moretti 29-28 (Brook), Benoit Russel 29-28 (Brook).

Brook could now retire or finally face fellow Crawford victim Amir Khan. As for the winner, he needs the biggest fights in order to match legacy with his clear talent.

Franco retains world title after controversial ending

Joshua Franco retained the WBA super-flyweight title after a farcical ending to his rematch with Andrew Maloney in the chief support. Referee Russell Mora and the Nevada Commission deemed the bout a no-decision after two completed rounds when Franco suffered right eye swelling from a proposed headbutt.

The true cause of the damage appeared to stem from a thumbed jab, landed fairly by the Australian who was rightly aggrieved.