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Old 12-14-2012, 02:47 AM   #17
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Default Re: Andrew Golota on Conan O'Bian 1996

Originally Posted by Rumsfeld View Post
Exactly. He was roughing up everyone in his path, and everything he had skill-wise all peaked that night--the jab, the right, the left hook, the combos, the body shots (the legal ones), and the elusive upper body and head movement. After the beating he administered on Bowe, despite the DQ, he must have been feeling really good about his future.

Good point on the seizure, but I actually think Golota's confidence was affected tremendously even before the Lewis fight. I think the entire aftermath of the Bowe rematch mentally broke him in some way. He had made the same mistakes again, and this time he battered Bowe far worse. The problem was that Golota also absorbed a great deal of punishment in the rematch, far more than he underwent the first time. The entire build-up to that rematch, Duva and Bloodworth were stressing no low blows, even making Golota work on a heavybag that had trunks on it! And of course this continued right up until the final DQ with an animated Bloodworth exclaiming, "NO! MORE! BODY SHOTS!"

Golota had really blown it that time, and he also endured a lot of physical punishment. The shot that hit him in the ninth before the final low blow combo--I forget how long before the combo it was, but Golota had Bowe backed into the corner--big right hand as I recall, and Bowe didn't even realize he'd hurt Golota. That shot right there may have symbolically represented the end of Golota as we knew him.

Going into the Lewis fight nearly 10 months later, I think Golota battled a lot of demons and self-doubt over that 10 month duration.

One thing I always wonder is how Golota would have fared against Ray Mercer, whom he was originally slated to face following the two Bowe fights. One of them suffered a neck injury though. I forget who. May have been Andrew? Regardless, I think Golota could have beaten Mercer. I am not saying he would have, but Mercer ran hot and cold. Golota could have scored a big win in that one and restored some of his lost confidence after that second Bowe fight. Or who knows? Maybe Golota was destined to get ****ed up after those two Bowe fights no matter who he faced. Mercer was tough and would have been up for Andrew, and Ray had a great chin then. But Golota had all the physical advantages and was the superior athlete then.

Would have been interesting for sure.

It's certainly arguable Golota's prime ended after the Bowe rematch. Took a lot of punishment for 9 rounds only to get DQed AGAIN for his efforts. Good points. That brutal fight may have ruined him mentally and he was always a bit off balance to begin with. He lost much of his aggression after that fight, I began noticing how gun shy he became when it took him 6 rounds to knock out that tub of lard Eli Dixon and went the distance against Jesse 'The Boogie Man' Ferguson. Pre-Bowe fight Golota would have gotten both of them out by the 2nd or 3rd round. Many of Golota's KOs came in the 1st round before the Bowe fights. I've studdied many of those earlier fights and he was very fast and aggressive back then. Pretty awesome to watch.

Yes Golota was first supposed to have fought Mercer in May of '97. I remember even looking at the tv guide (the actual book...didnt have internet back then) and I was all set to watch it that night and it never aired. I was like WTF?? I actually called my cable company and a guy explained that Golota pulled out of the fight just days before the fight due to a neck injury. The fight was rescheduled for August and this time Mercer pulled out due to a back injury. The next month I suddenly hear he's about to fight Lennox Lewis for the title and I remember immediately thinking that was a bad idea. He needed to get some wins under his belt before he stepped up against Lewis and restore his confidence. Who knows how very differently Golota's career would have turned out had he or Mercer not been injured and the bout took place.
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