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Old 08-04-2007, 04:33 AM   #6
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Default Re: George Foreman's 5 Fights in 1 Night

Unfortunately I'm old enough to remember this - vividly - as a live TV broadcast. At the time I felt a bit embarrassed for Big George. But in retrospect it's nothing that many other heavyweight champs and ex-champs haven't done before. Jim Braddock, smart enough to know he was past his prime, fought many paid exhibitions before losing his title to Joe Louis.

Arguably Joe Louis and Jack Johnson were forced by financial woes to stoop lower to make a buck in their later years. Muhammad Ali engaged in a slopfest against a Japanese martial artist who spent the entire "fight" scrabbling around on the canvas like a crab, kicking Ali in the legs, to avoid being hit. Reportedly the computerized Ali vs. Marciano hypothetical bout was rigged in favor of Marciano so that Ali could receive hush money for his legal defense fund while he was banned from boxing.

Before you criticize these guys, consider how hard they work and how easily they are ripped off by predators in the business, having nothing left after years of fighting. Read up on the Diego Corrales for example (and, sure, read both Gary Shaw's and Jin Mosley's versions for balance, but I have no doubt that Jin's story is far more representative of what happens to most fighters).

Whatever you think of Big George then and now, he's more charming and a helluva lot richer than most of us.
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