I first noticed Roy Jones Jr. as an newbie boxer when he was an adolescent. As a teen the Pensacola, Florida native was a celebrated boxer who received nationwide championships within the junior Olympics (16 and beneath), the Golden Gloves, and he additionally represented the USA within the 1988 Seoul Olympics.
Jones dominated each boxer, for each spherical of competitors, he confronted within the Olympics and… ought to have been awarded the gold medal in his closing bout towards Korean – Park Si-Hun, had he not been robbed by the judges. Jones beat Hun from pillar to put up, from bell to bell, for your complete bout, however the judges actually stole the battle from the American and awarded it to the Korean.
Jones turned one of many all-time greats in skilled ไฮไลท์มวย having received world championships in 4 completely different weight divisions together with a chunk of the heavyweight championship. Jones is the one boxer in historical past to start his profession at 154 kilos and win a heavyweight title.
His velocity and expertise was so extraordinary that he was known as Superman in his prime.
Now at age 43 he’s an outdated man in a sport dominated by males beneath 30. There was a time when no boxer may contact him. However that point has come and gone. His velocity is diminished, his abilities are eroded, he’s a shopworn fighter that is been knocked out 4 occasions and he’s turning into a punching bag towards boxers who weren’t ok to hold his bag – again within the day.
I’ve witnessed many warriors stick round too lengthy. Muhammad Ali, was one of many best athletes I’ve ever seen and at present he suffers from Parkinson’s illness and punch drunk dementia. The roar of the group, the adulation of the followers, fame and fortune, all of those turned the crack behavior that stored him coming again till he was a damaged down shell of himself. Mike and Jerry Quarry had been boxing contenders within the 60’s and 70’s. Each of the brothers died comparatively younger – of their early fifties as a result of they like Ali and Jones would not stroll away from the limelight.
After I was a younger man I labored with a boxer who stayed too lengthy within the sport. He had been rated as excessive as quantity two on the planet. Sadly I used to be in his nook the night time when he had nothing left of the ability he as soon as possessed, in a battle the place he was badly overwhelmed, by an peculiar fighter. As I used to be tending to him in his nook I heard somebody within the viewers say – “All he has left is braveness”. With a damaged coronary heart for my fighter buddy, I noticed for the primary time what the time period “shot fighter” meant. I made a decision then that I by no means wished to be part of that once more. When it is over it is over. The nice matchmaker Teddy Brenner as soon as informed me “I by no means use a fighter who don’t have anything left”.
Jones was an amazing champion and a beautiful human being who has helped others all through his profession. I’ve even been a beneficiary of his generosity. In 1997 as I used to be prepping Keith McKnight for a televised boxing match, Roy Jones and his coach Alton Merkelson allowed our group to arrange camp and keep in his Pensacola coaching facility without cost. And we’ve by no means forgotten their kindness to our group.
It is all the time a heart-breaker to see the star of the present exit the stage. But it surely’s much more coronary heart wrenching to see these nice warriors find yourself with mind injury, slurred speech, and perpetual well being issues from injury they suffered within the ring.
Jones is scheduled to field in Poland this Saturday. He has little or no left of the greatness he as soon as possessed. Hopefully it is his final look as a fighter within the ring. Stroll away Roy, take pleasure in life, when you nonetheless have your well being.