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Old 07-10-2011, 08:05 PM   #1
sportofkings
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Default What exactly is wrong with American amateur boxing?

This is a topic i've thought about a few times since I saw how poorly American boxing did at the Bejing Olympics. Im wondering why USA boxing has been on the decline over the last ten years or so. Historically America has always been at the forefront of amateur boxing, at both major international events and especially the olympics. The 1976, 1984 and 1988 teams were packed with future world champions and hof'ers,and raked in medals .If you compare that to the 2000, 2004 and then 2008 there has been a steady decline in results.

Ive discussed this briefly with other posters and various reasons have come up including, the amount of young talent going pro so early, poor coaching from an early age and a general lack of emphasis on a solid amateur career. Im not really buying the thought that the talented American boxers go pro early and forfeit a longer more experienced amateur career, because in the past the US has produced some very young medalists form the age of 17. It seems to me that poor coaching from a very early age has something to do with it, it could be man reason for all I know.

But with the increasingly poor amateur results as the years have gone by, its only a matter of time before it starts effecting the quality of the American pro game, and maybe it has already, with some fighters lacking good basic skills. Ive heard several steps have been taking to improve results for American boxing, but ive yet to see many significant results.

Anyways instead of me just rambling on, id like to hear your thoughts of the American amateur scene. Why has it gone downhill and what can be done to change it?
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Old 07-10-2011, 08:12 PM   #2
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Default Re: What exactly is wrong with American amateur boxing?

Yeah the trainers nowadays sucks and boxing becoming less popular hurts us
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Old 07-10-2011, 08:14 PM   #3
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Default Re: What exactly is wrong with American amateur boxing?

I think American dominance declined when the way fights get scored in the Olympics changed...Olympic boxing isn't boxing, it's fencing.
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Old 07-10-2011, 08:23 PM   #4
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Default Re: What exactly is wrong with American amateur boxing?

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Originally Posted by mrtony80 View Post
I think American dominance declined when the way fights get scored in the Olympics changed...Olympic boxing isn't boxing, it's fencing.
You talking about after 1988 when they stopped scoring on rounds and switched to points?
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Old 07-10-2011, 08:34 PM   #5
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Default Re: What exactly is wrong with American amateur boxing?

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Originally Posted by sportofkings View Post
This is a topic i've thought about a few times since I saw how poorly American boxing did at the Bejing Olympics. Im wondering why Usa boxing has been on the decline over the last ten years or so. Historically America has always been at the forefront of amateur boxing, at both major international events and especially the olympics. The 1976, 1984 and 1988 teams were packed with future world champions and hof'ers,and raked in medals .If you compare that to the 2000, 2004 and then 2008 there has been a steady decline in results.

Ive discussed this briefly with other posters and various reasons have come up including, the amount of young talent going pro so early, poor coaching form an early age and a general lack of emphasis on a solid amateur career. Im not really buying the thought that the talented American boxers go pro early and forfeit a longer more experienced amateur career, because in the past the US has produced some very young medalists form the age of 17. It seems to me that poor coaching from a very early age has something to do with it, it could be man reason for all I know.

But with the increasingly poor amateur results as the years have gone by, its only a matter of time before it starts effecting the quality of the American pro game, and maybe it has already, with some fighters lacking good basic skills. Ive heard several steps have been taking to improve results for American boxing, but ive yet to see many significant results.

Anyways instead of me just rambling on, id like to hear your thoughts of the American amateur scene. Why has it gone downhill and what can be done to change it?
Televised fights -- dating to the late '50s-- was the insidious cancer at the root of it all, s: It killed local fight cards (that ran 7 days a week) and hardcore gyms, one after another. They dotted every neighborhood. No gyms, no fighters.

Boxing used to be the macho yardstick for young boys. Now it's MMA.

Boxing no longer has the cachet.
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Old 07-10-2011, 08:36 PM   #6
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Default Re: What exactly is wrong with American amateur boxing?

American amature boxing didn't (rightly or wrongly)react to the changes in amature boxing scoring, continuing to 1) produce boxers fighting the way they felt am boxing should be, and perhaps related 2) teaching amature boxers to fight pro-style.
Whatever you think of the merits of this, the result is USA is not even close to the world top 20 countries. Cuba, Russia, Ireland. Azerbaijan, Ukraine, China, Great Britain. Italy, Turkey, Germany, India, Kazakhstan, France, Poland, Hungary, Brazil to name 16 off the top are all superior at the moment.
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Old 07-10-2011, 08:39 PM   #7
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Default Re: What exactly is wrong with American amateur boxing?

Lack of participation.. ..When i was a kid, more kids and young adults were boxing,.And there were more gyms( The decline even started before my time)Even in the Latino communities i notice there are less gyms.,,. But more so it has dropped in popularity with Blacks...... And world class white american kids come around only a couple times every decade or so.(who Malinaggi,Pavlik?)

Still lot of talent coming out the west coast ( Cali ) .. BUt cities like NY,Philly,Dc,Mid west use to be hotbeads for boxing talent... Its taken a noticeable dip... Europeans have came up but alot of the reason they are doing better in the heavier divisions..,Is becasue Boxing isnt as popular in the US anymore..

Different times, kids wanna play other sports,or do MMA... And lot of the Tough street thugs that used ot be saved by boxing,, are now doing long stretches..
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Old 07-10-2011, 08:39 PM   #8
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Default Re: What exactly is wrong with American amateur boxing?

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Originally Posted by mrtony80 View Post
.Olympic boxing isn't boxing, it's fencing.

I've been voicing that opinion for years. It seems to be centered around how many times you can tap your opponent with the scoring portion of the gloves----and when I say "Tap", I mean just that. Way too many of these new fighters don't sit down on their punches and are only interested in volume.

But, in their defense, that is what wins them fights, so they do what they need to do to get that "W". Also, I feel there is way too much referee interference in today's matches. Just let the guys fight!!
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Old 07-10-2011, 08:46 PM   #9
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Default Re: What exactly is wrong with American amateur boxing?

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Originally Posted by john garfield View Post
Televised fights -- dating to the late '50s-- was the insidious cancer at the root of it all, s: It killed local fight cards (that ran 7 days a week) and hardcore gyms, one after another. They dotted every neighborhood. No gyms, no fighters.

Boxing used to be the macho yardstick for young boys. Now it's MMA.

Boxing no longer has the cachet.
Its a pity that American boxing has slid downhill in both the Amateurs and slowly the pros. I still think,a nd im hoping that MMA is a fad compared to boxing and that its nearing the end of its shelf life, but maybe im wrong. More gyms have to be set up and interest has to be revived at the youngest level of youths, but I suppose its easier said than done John.
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Old 07-10-2011, 08:48 PM   #10
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Default Re: What exactly is wrong with American amateur boxing?

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Originally Posted by mattdonnellon View Post
American amature boxing didn't (rightly or wrongly)react to the changes in amature boxing scoring, continuing to 1) produce boxers fighting the way they felt am boxing should be, and perhaps related 2) teaching amature boxers to fight pro-style.
Whatever you think of the merits of this, the result is USA is not even close to the world top 20 countries. Cuba, Russia, Ireland. Azerbaijan, Ukraine, China, Great Britain. Italy, Turkey, Germany, India, Kazakhstan, France, Poland, Hungary, Brazil to name 16 off the top are all superior at the moment.
But the USA has still shown itself to be able to have some good success even with the new system. They had a very good 1996 Olympics where they captured 6 medals. It seems to have gone more rapidly downhill since 2004. Although the scoring system might have something to do with it, I feel it has to do with more than just the change from rounds to points. Its probably a number of factors as a few other posters have mentioned.
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Old 07-11-2011, 01:24 AM   #11
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Default Re: What exactly is wrong with American amateur boxing?

because there are not enough talented patty cake playing sissies in america.


its really not even boxing anymore. in a few years they are gonna have them fighting in football helmets or something equally stupid.
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Old 07-11-2011, 02:13 AM   #12
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Default Re: What exactly is wrong with American amateur boxing?

Because life is to easy in the US now, as one great old time trainer said, I think it was Ray Arcel, we need more slums.

Also to many kids are been raised without fathers and its fathers who take kids to boxing gyms not moms, most moms would rather die than send there kid to be beat up day in day out.

Then there is the problem of drugs in the communities that traditionally produce good fighters, Micky Wards brother is just one of many examples.

As a result there is a smaller pool of talent to pick from and so less talent overall.

Bottom line is that the US is becoming emasculated, everyone likes to watch two guys fighting but very few have the motivation to become one of those guys.
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Old 07-11-2011, 10:54 AM   #13
sportofkings
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Default Re: What exactly is wrong with American amateur boxing?

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Originally Posted by rokurota View Post
because there are not enough talented patty cake playing sissies in america.


its really not even boxing anymore. in a few years they are gonna have them fighting in football helmets or something equally stupid.
Nah man dont blame it all on the scoring, it seems that the quality of pro boxing in the us is slowly going downhill aswell

From what other posters have said it has to have something to do with the general lack of interest and poor coaching.
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Old 07-11-2011, 01:56 PM   #14
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Default Re: What exactly is wrong with American amateur boxing?

the popularity of football.

ESPECIALLY the growth of cable sports channels, thus the astronomic increase in the popularity of college football.


Tough, athletic kids are huge football fans these days, and choose that sport over any other.


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Old 07-11-2011, 02:20 PM   #15
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Default Re: What exactly is wrong with American amateur boxing?

As someone mentioned earlier, I think amateurs are trained more in the pro-style than the points system. I believe that is one part of the issue.

The other, is that there are NOT many good amateur trainers. There is too much "stand still and slug the bags/mits" and a lot of these coaches just don't know enough to take a kid with no experience and turn him into a [i]boxer[i].

I've been fortunate to have lived in several different parts of the country, and have stayed in boxing intermittently throughout my life. Among the many gyms I've trained in, only one stands out as training fighters with an eye on success in the amateurs.

EDIT: there is also a shift in sporting culture. most kids would rather play basketball or football. the fact is, those sports don't carry the stigmas of boxing, and in addition to the aforementioned lack of preparation for olympic-type scoring, the kids that do get into boxing, end up losing fights for reasons they don't understand and that has led to a lot of disillusion among them as well. (After the Paul Williams fight, this would also apply to the pro game as well).

Last edited by dcb154; 07-11-2011 at 02:24 PM. Reason: Additional Rant
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