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Old 08-07-2008, 11:13 PM   #61
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Default Re: Leonard says Hearns was his biggest rival AND toughest opponent

Originally Posted by SorceryatCaesar
that's a new one on me. i never heard that the hagler people considered going to 154 for leonard. when leonard fought larry bonds in syracuse in march 1981 his attorney, mike trainer, invited manny steward and steve wainwright (hagler's attorney) to come in and negotiate. wainwright demanded parity for a leonard fight, while steward was willing to accept less than leonard. that's how hearns got the 1981 bout - (maybe trainer was using wainwright to gain leverage on steward) - but as far as i recall nobody mentioned hagler dropping to 154 during that period. nor do i remember it coming up before leonard's 'retirement' gala at the Baltimore Civic Center, November 1982, with Hagler at ringside, awaiting what he thought would be Leonard's announcement of their bout.

Marvin probably could have made 154 - he was 157 1/2 against Duran - but he would have refused to do so on principle. He was too old school - too firmly established in his identity as a middleweight.
The fight was a possibility just before they met at Baltmiore Civic Center. I can say without any hesitation whatsoever that both camps were in 'mild' negotations about the fight taking place. As I stated in my post before my last one, Leonard was the one willing to step up to 154lbs to face Hagler. And Hagler said that if the fight was to take place it would have to be at full middleweight for his titles. He felt that he would seriously weaken himself if he dropped all the way down to jr middleweight. At no point did I mentioned that "the Hagler people considered going to 154 for Leonard"

However, I did say that had Leonard continued fighting and not retired in 1982 then it's possible things could have changed with Hagler's decision and he might well have moved down to 154. Maybe Leonard would have moved up to middleweight. Who knows?

The bottom line is that the fight was a possibility, but the weight could not be agreed, then Leonard retired.
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Old 08-08-2008, 12:16 AM   #62
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Default Re: Leonard says Hearns was his biggest rival AND toughest opponent

got it. for a moment i was confused.
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