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The journeyman boxer: Fighting on the losing side


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Found this video and article via Muay Thai on The Brain's facebook page.  "Boxing journeymen: sport's biggest losers or unappreciated artists?"

Gives a whole new meaning to the phrase "professional" fighter and what records really mean.

 

 

"I was getting the same money whether I won, lost or drew, so why would I have a hard fight for eight rounds when I can walk around for three rounds, fight for two, and then walk around for another three rounds?"
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This is something you see in more tourist-driven fight settings in Thailand, too. A lot of guys refer to the "Tuk Tuk driver" they're fighting on the islands or whatever, but it's basically a retired fighter who is fat and out of shape, but the heaviest they could get to go against a large western fighter. They fight hard for a minute and then take a fall because it's work; it's a payday, why get hurt if you don't have to?

There's a big difference in the "ethical" view of fighting from the standpoint of "every fight is for your honor" that we in the west like to romanticize about, this warrior's code and all that, and then there's the ethics of actually fighting as a job or a way of life or literally to feed yourself. The saying that a boxer is "hungry" when he's fighting hard doesn't come from abstract poetics - Jack Dempsey was literally hungry, fighting several times a week to be able to eat - but that hunger is represented by the fighter never giving up, rather than the payday version. I totally feel for this side of fighting, but I still have the romanticized notion as well where I cannot cheer for a fight where one person in the ring is ready to quit the moment s/he steps in. 

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