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Second thought equals victory

Oct 14, 2003 10:12 AM

Notes to you because there really isn’t a subject worth flailing until we get these silly baseball games done and can go back to real sport. Outside of boxing and horse racing, the rest are children’s games....The key to money management is simple. Always bet more, lots more, on your winners than you do on your losers.

Once again, I flunked this easy test. I put some money on James Toney to beat Evander Holyfield. I even put a little on him to win by knockout. Further, I put an even larger bet on Joel Casamayor against Diego Corrales.

I’d say this was pretty astute handicapping, except I didn’t have enough on those bets. Even though I recognized early on that the "smart" money was on the eventual winners, I thought the odds would go up on my picks so I held back.

Toney, in fact, wound up the favorite at the Mandalay Bay. It was obvious that my bets were not part of the "smart" money. When I win, include me in the "lucky" money. Hey, a couple of weeks out from the card, I wasn’t sure I was going to bet at all. So no grumbles.

King has X-mas gifts

Don King has a marathon show Dec. 13 in Atlantic City. Five, maybe seven "title" fights. It happens every December: King has to give his large stable - and he does treat them like animals - some work to pay for all those Christmas gifts.,,,One of the "title" fights is a WBA "interim" between two of the lesser former heavyweight champions of recent vintage, Hasim Rahman and John Ruiz. Get this. The winner eventually will have to face David Tua. Rahman-Tua III or Ruiz-Tua II are a couple of the bouts we certainly wouldn’t want to miss.

There is a "title" bout next week. The idea is to have a bookmaker in Germany, where you might get some decent odds on the plodding Julio Gonzalez against the badly slipping Dariusz Michalczewski in Hamburg. Three years ago, while in Berlin to cover Chris Byrd beating Vitali Klitschko, I got a glimpse of the Polish-born light heavyweight who was always calling out Roy Jones Jr. He was sparring with Scott Lopeck, a journeyman whose record was barely above .500, but had the dubious distinction of being the New York State middleweight champion for a while. Lopeck was handling The Tiger with ease. Couldn’t miss him.

Dandy Dan Rafael of USA Today, who watches too many fights, said Michalczewski - the only thing worse than typing his name is trying to pronounce it - has gone way down, hurt by Joey DeGrandis, struggling against Derrick Harmon and Richard Hall and lucky his bout with Montell Griffin was stopped prematurely. Gonzalez isn’t much, but he’s got heart, can punch some and Rafael thinks there could be an upset.... The Germans are trumpeting that Michalczewski is going for 49-0 to tie Rocky Marciano’s record. Bull. That was the Rock’s record. It’s not a boxing record.

Real Deal no more

Don’t worry about Holyfield fighting again. Evander likes money and I don’t think he’s going to be offered premium purses anymore. Showtime lost a bundle by guaranteeing his $5 million purse (promoter Dan Goossen lost less because he had to pay Toney only $2 million and at least can recouperate in future fights). The attendance at the Mandalay Bay was disappointing (the announced crowd was 7,847, of which I guess at least 847 paid) and the pay-per-view was a woeful 175,000, maybe.... So who’s going to pay the Real Deal big bucks again? Bob Arum’s competing pay-per-view show in Los Angeles did maybe one fifth of the Holyfield-Toney buys.

Toney, on the other hand, enlivens the heavyweight division. Yeah, he started as a middleweight so long ago. But he’s a heavyweight now. A plump one, but we all know fat is beautiful. And look at the possible matchups: Toney vs. Roy Jones Jr. II (yes, it’s possible to imagine James winning), Toney vs. Mike Tyson ("I’ll tattoo his other eye," James advises), Toney vs. Vassiliy Jirov II (a slaughter the second time around, methinks), Toney vs. Lennox Lewis or the Klitschkos or Chris Byrd.

Yeah, beating the ordinary Jirov and the old Real Deal may not constitute enough accomplishment to warrant the Hall of Fame (added to his previous performances, however....), but they could get Toney Fighter of the Year garlands. And, it was the way he beat Jirov and Holyfield. He was brilliant defensively in both and showed counter-punching vs. Jirov and was able to out quick Holyfield on offense. He was fun to watch, he’s fun to hear and does that make him different than Lennox Lewis? You bet.