onlyinboxing  asked:

Great site man --- What was the first fight that truly blew you away, the fight were you knew you'd have to 'carry the ancient torch'?

Thank you for your kind words! I can’t answer your question in the way you want, though, because I wanted to be a boxer before I ever followed or appreciated the sport. I was a really scrappy kid, the kind who picked fights with bigger boys for kicks. I knew very early on that boxing was the only sport for me - to me, it represented strength of will and martial valor, things very important to me. But my parents, staunchly conservative Christians, disapproved, and so my boxing education was deferred. 

When I reached my teens, I began researching the sport, figuring that even if I couldn’t participate, I could at least appreciate the art. The first fight that struck me was Ali’s first battle with Joe Frazier. As a new student of the sport, all you hear about is that Ali was the greatest of all time, but there he was, beaten in an all-out war. 

I never stopped wanting to be a fighter, but that fight opened my eyes to the drama and glory of the sport. My research began to pick up momentum. I began to check out library books, sift through ancient Sports Illustrated articles and scour YouTube for great fights gone by. The more I learned, the deeper I fell in love with boxing, but there was no gym within twenty-five miles of my hometown.

As soon as I got a car, I drove to New Orleans and joined a boxing gym. I was seventeen. I’ve been a first-hand student of the sweet science ever since.