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Old 07-30-2011, 11:42 PM   #1
Saintpat
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Default Herol Graham: I don't get the love

When I look at him, I see a guy who clearly stood out as a contender beating B-level guys like Lindell Holmes and Sanderline Williams, but some people (primarily Brits?) act like he's some kind of ATG.

I don't see it.

He lost to Kalumbay both times they fought, he lost to McCallum and he got knocked out in spectacular fashion by Julian Jackson, who was practically legally blind at that point.

His only notable win is over Ayub Kalule, who had already been exposed as being a notch below the top guys of the day.

So why would anyone think the Bomber (an unusual nickname for a guy who was right around 50 percent on knocking out opponents for his entire career) was special?
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Old 07-30-2011, 11:52 PM   #2
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Default Re: Herol Graham: I don't get the love

He was very good talent...unique and tricky style.

Any era after the mid 90's he would have held a title for at least a little while..he gets a little overrated by some Brits..the whole "best british fighter to never win a world title" thing gets overplayed.

He did have a pretty good punch...I think his KO percentage is misleading because he was more of a score & run/spoiler type of fighter in his early career..still had the amatuer mindset probably.
Once he hit his peak and was more experienced he was knocking out cats more often then not.
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Old 07-31-2011, 12:43 AM   #3
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Default Re: Herol Graham: I don't get the love

He did well against Kalambay and McCallum. Dominated Jackson getting caught. Not all can be judged based on results, although I agree that Graham came up short when it talking about elite status, sometimes there was more flash than substance to him.
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Old 07-31-2011, 03:30 AM   #4
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Default Re: Herol Graham: I don't get the love

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He did well against Kalambay and McCallum.
A bit of revisionism there.

He was a very hot favourite to beat Kalambay, and put a dreadful performance together, with a world title fight with Barkley already in his pocket, if he beat the Italian. He was hammered by the press for losing.

As for McCallum, once again he was on the way to upsetting the Jamaican, but due to indiscipline lost a point, and lost the fight. The feeling post fight was Graham was a choker, and the Jackson fight kind of added further evidence of this.
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Old 07-31-2011, 04:02 AM   #5
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Default Re: Herol Graham: I don't get the love

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A bit of revisionism there.

He was a very hot favourite to beat Kalambay, and put a dreadful performance together, with a world title fight with Barkley already in his pocket, if he beat the Italian. He was hammered by the press for losing.

As for McCallum, once again he was on the way to upsetting the Jamaican, but due to indiscipline lost a point, and lost the fight. The feeling post fight was Graham was a choker, and the Jackson fight kind of added further evidence of this.
Did that have a little to do with underrating the obscure and unproven Kalamabay?

In hindsight...probably not exactly an huge upset really.

Remember reading an article a while back from an American paper that was talking as though McCallum going over and taking Kalambay's title was a given.
He just didn't seem to be really highly thought of at the time...until he beat Mike.

Losing the 2nd half of a fight to Mike McCallum isn't exactly choking IMO...what he invested into body punching just about always paid dividends late.
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Old 07-31-2011, 04:21 AM   #6
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Default Re: Herol Graham: I don't get the love

Graham was a very talented fighter but a Big Game Bottler, as they say.

Last edited by My dinner with Conteh; 07-31-2011 at 04:32 AM.
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Old 07-31-2011, 04:32 AM   #7
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Default Re: Herol Graham: I don't get the love

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Remember reading an article a while back from an American paper that was talking as though McCallum going over and taking Kalambay's title was a given.
He just didn't seem to be really highly thought of at the time...until he beat Mike.

It was the same here. McCallum was hot favourite, but Sumbu schooled him that night, easily in my book.

For the record, I thought Graham was robbed in the Kalambay rematch. But a caveat there is that watched it pissed up in a pub, so not sure how accurate by 'card' is.
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Old 07-31-2011, 04:32 AM   #8
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Default Re: Herol Graham: I don't get the love

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It was the same here. McCallum was hot favourite, but Sumbu schooled him that night, easily in my book.

For the record, I thought Graham was robbed in the Kalambay rematch. But a caveat on that, was I watched it pissed up in a pub, so not sure how accurate by 'card' is.
I thought Graham deserved the nod in the rematch, but was never going to get any favours in Italy.

As for Kalambay, he was considered limited, losing to Kalule seemed to show them limitations, and Graham schooled Kalule, it was a huge disappointment when The Bomber blew the Kalambay fight.

McCallum too, was the big dog in the Middleweight division going into the Kalambay fight. He did seem on the verge of becoming a mainstream star, and Kalambay was not going to stop that progress...
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Old 07-31-2011, 04:36 AM   #9
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Default Re: Herol Graham: I don't get the love

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I thought Graham deserved the nod in the rematch, but was never going to get any favours in Italy
Aha, so maybe I was still sober . I recall the commentator (Harry Carpenter, I'm almost certain) saying the scoring was a disgace. I'm likely to still have it somewhere, I may revisit it again.
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Old 07-31-2011, 07:19 AM   #10
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Default Re: Herol Graham: I don't get the love

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Aha, so maybe I was still sober . I recall the commentator (Harry Carpenter, I'm almost certain) saying the scoring was a disgace. I'm likely to still have it somewhere, I may revisit it again.
If I remember rightly it was shown on a Saturday afternoon (Grandstand), so I suspect (but could quite easily be wrong), that the fight would of been edited.
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Old 07-31-2011, 08:14 AM   #11
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Default Re: Herol Graham: I don't get the love

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Originally Posted by TBooze View Post
A bit of revisionism there.

He was a very hot favourite to beat Kalambay, and put a dreadful performance together, with a world title fight with Barkley already in his pocket, if he beat the Italian. He was hammered by the press for losing.

As for McCallum, once again he was on the way to upsetting the Jamaican, but due to indiscipline lost a point, and lost the fight. The feeling post fight was Graham was a choker, and the Jackson fight kind of added further evidence of this.
I don't see how it's revisionism when it's true. Just because the British overrated his ability and underrated Kalambay, doesn't mean he did not perform respectably. He arguably won the rematch as well when Kalambay was still a capable opponent.

Losing to McCallum by a margin of a point deduction is no shame either, considering the sometimes more fondly remembered Watson was taken apart and so too may have been Benn and Eubank.

He was not a choker in my opinion, rather with his unorthodox but daring defense was never meant to be a dominant force. Can't stick your chin out there against a puncher like Jackson, even when in complete control of the fight.
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Old 07-31-2011, 08:20 AM   #12
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Default Re: Herol Graham: I don't get the love

Kalambay and McCallum are 2 of the best MWs of all time ability wise and he had close fights with them. He dominated Julian Jackson and was seconds away from a TKO win before being KO'd himself. Graham went 35-0 before his first loss and the likes of Eubank and Benn avoided him like the plague, Watson is arguably 2-1 against those men and didn't do anything like aswell as Graham against McCallum
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Old 07-31-2011, 08:31 AM   #13
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Default Re: Herol Graham: I don't get the love

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Originally Posted by TBooze View Post
I thought Graham deserved the nod in the rematch, but was never going to get any favours in Italy.

As for Kalambay, he was considered limited, losing to Kalule seemed to show them limitations, and Graham schooled Kalule, it was a huge disappointment when The Bomber blew the Kalambay fight.

McCallum too, was the big dog in the Middleweight division going into the Kalambay fight. He did seem on the verge of becoming a mainstream star, and Kalambay was not going to stop that progress...
I don't know who considered Kalambay limited...but that says more about the British sporting press (or whoever was making those assertions) than it does about Sumbu.

I didn't see a limited fighter during his "loss" to Kalule...perhaps a bit green and unpolished but overall an excellent 2 handed technician, who even managed to hurt Kalule a few times.
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Old 07-31-2011, 08:37 AM   #14
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Default Re: Herol Graham: I don't get the love

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I don't know who considered Kalambay limited...but that says more about the British sporting press (or whoever was making those assertions) than it does about Sumbu.

I didn't see a limited fighter during his "loss" to Kalule...perhaps a bit green and unpolished but overall an excellent 2 handed technician, who even managed to hurt Kalule a few times.
Anyway calling Kalambay limited knows nothing about the sport. Is that fight on utube WAR?
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Old 07-31-2011, 09:00 AM   #15
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Default Re: Herol Graham: I don't get the love

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Anyway calling Kalambay limited knows nothing about the sport. Is that fight on utube WAR?
Kalambay-Kalule?

Yeah that one is.
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