Tis the season for your humble writer to be retrospective, but we’ll get our jollies by being kind to our fine featherweight friends. Yes, even the big guys are on our list.
It doesn’t matter whether you’ve been naughty or nice to be remembered. So season’s greetings to Kery Davis of HBO, who hereby receives another Klitschko to replace the one who limped away.
”¡ To the family of Leavander Johnson, we offer peace.
”¡ To the alphabets, we give you Bernard Hopkins. May he find fulfillment in retirement by becoming your undisputed ruler.
”¡ To Naseem Hamed, a shuffleboard set to enjoy retirement.
”¡ To Gerald McClellan, we give you lots of friends like ace photographer Teddy Blackburn to keep you in our hearts, along with Greg Page, Martin Sanchez, Duk Koo Kim, Beethavean Scottland and all the other felled warriors.
”¡ To Teddy Atlas, the chance to work at ringside with a real natural commentator, Mike Tyson.
”¡ To Jay Larkin, a free lifetime subscription to Showtime with a block on any Don King fights.
”¡ To Gene Kilroy, recognition as one of the real good guys in this world.
”¡ To Gene’s old boss, Muhammad Ali, a vacation.
”¡ To Shelly Finkel, we give him Terrell Owens to spice up the heavyweight division and be the long-sought replacement for Mike Tyson.
”¡ To Marco Antonio Barrera, we would give another shot at Erik Morales or Manny Pacquiao, whichever.
”¡ To Floyd Mayweather Jr., a fight with Ricky Hatton — which would be a gift to all boxing fans, both of them.
”¡ To Mike Tyson, besides a commentator’s job, a copy of Dr. Spock.
”¡ To Don King, a fine-tooth comb to find another Alan Hopper.
”¡ To Zahir Raheem, we give strings to tie around promoters’ fingers so he is not forgotten.
”¡ To Juan Manuel Marquez, we give another tie — like the draw he was lucky to receive against Pacquiao. Also, another belt, even if after expenses he doesn’t break even by going to Indonesia.
”¡ To Hasim Rahman, we give legs with which to face James Toney from different angles.
”¡ To James Toney, the gift of having life smell as sweet as a bakery — and the willpower to resist all the goodies.
”¡ To Johnny Bos, the award as 2006 comeback of the year.
”¡ To Bob Arum, an expunging of that section of the Talmud where it is written he can not promote a heavyweight champion.
”¡ To John Hornewer, the realization that your lovely wife and daughter make up for all the strains.
”¡ To Mark Breland, the chance to return to the top as a trainer.
”¡ To Richie Giachetti, the chance to return to the top as a trainer.
”¡ To Oscar de la Hoya, a healthy baby and lots of pleasure in fatherhood.
”¡ To Chris Byrd, all that you’ve waited for so patiently.
”¡ To Winky Wright, all that you’ve waited for so patiently — and a quick crack at Jermain Taylor.
”¡To Jermain Taylor, a promoter who has faith that you can beat Winky Wright.
”¡ To Jose Luis Castillo and Diego Corrales, many thanks for 2005 and safe passage in 2006.
”¡ To Carl Moretti, some more lessons from Al Certo.
”¡ To Roy Jones Jr., a long career as a former boxer.
”¡ To Evander Holyfield, ditto.
”¡ To Hector Camacho, the ability to go back a quarter-century and start all over again.
”¡ To Ivan Calderon, Brian Villoria and all those other tiny artists, pituitary glands that suddenly go berserk and turn you into the saviors of the heavyweight division.
”¡ To Antonio Tarver, better roles than playing straight man to Sylvester Stallone.
”¡ To Glencoffe Johnson, a third fight with Tarver.
”¡ To Jean-Marc Mormeck, a first fight with Tarver.
”¡ To Rafael Marquez, the bantamweight who has everything, a few more pounds to muscle in bigger divisions.
”¡ To both Sugar Shane Mosley and Fernando Vargas, victory.
”¡ To our troops, a safe and quick homecoming.
”¡ To Fred Sternburg, an award to the cutest PR guy in boxing (just edging out Kelly Swanson and Lee Samuels).
”¡ To Dave Anderson, all the best to the best.
”¡ To Vic Ziegel, same (see, it’s from A to Z).
”¡ To Fast Eddie Schuyler, Bloomsburg forever young.
”¡ To those who put money where their kids’ food should be, a healthy and prosperous new year.