Did Hagler Duck Anyone

Discussion in 'Classic Boxing Forum' started by Joeywill, Sep 29, 2023.



  1. Man_Machine

    Man_Machine Boxing Junkie Full Member

    7,735
    7,883
    Jun 9, 2010
    Nice job JT - This should hopefully promulgate some clarity around the question of Hagler/Benitez and dispel any myth that this was a remotely viable bout.

    It's also worth noting that Hagler's March '82 date - that would eventually see 'Caveman' Lee put on the bill - was in the diary well before the outcome of the Benitez/Duran bout was known. It had been scheduled back in December '81 and centered on agreements made between Manny Steward and Arum - essentially viewed as a build-up to the Hearns bout.

    Also worth mentioning is that, while the Hearns bout was being made, signed and falling through, the WBA had been waging and continued to wage a particularly aggressive campaign for their mandatory challenger Fully Obel to get another shot at Hagler.

    Something else to note is that, within two weeks of the Hagler/Hearns cancellation being announced (in the June of '82), Steward declared his intention for Hearns to fight Benitez. Protracted Benitez/Hearns negotiations then ensued, with the bout finally being sealed in early September, to take place on the 3rd of December '82.

    So, there was at no time a "perfect opportunity" for Hagler to face Benitez.
     
  2. Saintpat

    Saintpat Obsessed with Boxing Full Member

    20,627
    20,669
    Jun 26, 2009
    As I noted, Arum/Hagler/HBO had found no problem giving Juan Roldan step-aside money THREE times to stave off his mandatory. They could have at least attempted the same with Obel.

    The Caveman Lee bout in no way built up or enhanced a Hearns bout. Funny nobody ever mentioned it when they actually did fight. Because Lee was a nobody … he’s not someone the public associated with Hearns or even recognized period beyond (for those few who were familiar with him) being a guy Frank Fletcher KTFO. Hell, at least fight Fletcher … the guy who beat him.

    You said it yourself — Hearns and Steward turned to Benitez to negotiate. There would have been nothing stopping Hagler’s team from demanding Arum jump in there and make Marvin-Wilfred instead … IF they wanted the fight.

    Again, not saying Benitez would have won or that Hagler’s side was afraid, but the man pretty much made every fight he ever wanted to make outside of this. If that had been Marvin’s intent, it would have happened. Or at least the public would have known side was trying.
     
  3. Man_Machine

    Man_Machine Boxing Junkie Full Member

    7,735
    7,883
    Jun 9, 2010
    And what makes you believe Hagler’s Attorney hadn’t been staving off the pressure to take his Obelmejias mandatory, at any time since November ’81?


    I think you have missed the central thrust of what was being explained here.

    You have consistently implied that Hagler took the fight with Lee in favor of a bout with Benitez after the latter had just beaten Duran.

    Hagler's March ’82 date was made well before the outcome of Benitez/Duran was known. That was the salient point. If the fight had already been made for Hagler, then how could he have elected to fight his March ’82 opponent INSTEAD OF recent Duran-vanquisher Benitez?

    And, I didn’t suggest the Lee bout enhanced a Hearns bout. How could it? Lee wasn’t even the original opponent. But it was a match made with another of Steward’s stable that was reported to be part of agreements reached between Arum and Steward, which also involved the Hearns matchup.


    You seem to be overlooking the fact that Fully Obel had been Hagler's WBA mandatory for over 6 months (beyond the time allowed by the WBA rules at the time) when the Hagler/Hearns fight collapsed and the WBA were not going to let up. Hagler’s Attorney had indeed already staved off two deadlines to make the fight already.

    The casual assumption that Hagler’s team could cut in on Benitez, pissing off Steward and Hearns in the process (likely making a Hearns bout down the line more difficult to make), and that Arum could deal with King and - on the off-chance King and Arum were prepared to negotiate with each other - then have those negotiations drawn out for two to three months, all while the WBA were chomping at the bit, threatening to strip Hagler, demonstrates a slight detachment from reality.

    The smart play, once the Hearns fight had fallen through entirely, was for Hagler to get the WBA off his back, thereby enabling his team to negotiate those stays you're so keen to remind everyone about, re Roldan. This afforded Hagler the time to satisfy the WBC by taking on two of their mandatory challengers in '83 (Sibbo and Scypion) and the wiggle room to squeeze in a Superfight with Duran that same year.

    That has to been seen as much better business in the longer run, surely?


    I think you are grossly idealizing the situation and missing the art of the possible by a wide margin in this instance. As previously stated: ...there was at no time a "perfect opportunity" for Hagler to face Benitez - and almost every conceivable rationale for why that statement stands has been provided in this thread.
     
    Clinton and JohnThomas1 like this.
  4. JohnThomas1

    JohnThomas1 VIP Member Full Member

    48,605
    35,789
    Apr 27, 2005
    Cheers MM, less than a light breeze in a teacup for sure. Good points of your own too. Hagler is one of few fighters immune to such claims.
     
    Clinton, Greg Price99 and Man_Machine like this.
  5. AntonioMartin1

    AntonioMartin1 Jeanette Full Member

    2,799
    2,139
    Jan 23, 2022
    IM baaaack

    Been away for seven days but my new computer is home...what did i do all these days? watch soap operas, watch movies, sing, dance, hang out with my girl-friends and buy an overpriced bracelet lol.....and go to the su..err back to the topic at hand...

    He fought Obelmejias twice, Antuofermo, Hamsho twice, Lee, Sibson, Scypion, Duran, Roldan, Hearns, Mugabi and Leonatd. Of those I truly believe Sinson, Lee and Roldan would have been champions in most eras, Duran, Hearns and Leonard are legends, Antuoformo arguably, and Mugabi would have been a legend in most eras.

    The only fight that didnt happen was the Wilfred Benitez one and that wasnt either Hagler or Benitez's fault. THey both wanted it but Benitez lost to Hamsho.

    In short: no. LOL
     
    Last edited: Oct 4, 2023
    cslb likes this.
  6. mcvey

    mcvey VIP Member Full Member

    95,349
    25,268
    Jun 2, 2006
    • Hagler and Leonard fought for the WBC title only. The WBA stripped Hagler for not fighting Herol Graham, its top-ranked contender. The IBF did not strip Hagler, but it refused to sanction the fight and said the title would be declared vacant if Hagler should lose to Leonard.
     
  7. mcvey

    mcvey VIP Member Full Member

    95,349
    25,268
    Jun 2, 2006
    Lee was not even Ring ranked!
     
  8. mcvey

    mcvey VIP Member Full Member

    95,349
    25,268
    Jun 2, 2006
    Lee,Duran,and Leonard were not ranked by Ring.
     
  9. mcvey

    mcvey VIP Member Full Member

    95,349
    25,268
    Jun 2, 2006
    No he fought Don Lee and was stopped by him.
    Sibson never fought Caveman.
     
    BELLERS and greynotsoold like this.
  10. mcvey

    mcvey VIP Member Full Member

    95,349
    25,268
    Jun 2, 2006
    How many Ring ranked middleweight contenders.champions did Obel beat? None
    How many did Duran beat?1
    How many did Leonard beat?1
     
  11. AntonioMartin1

    AntonioMartin1 Jeanette Full Member

    2,799
    2,139
    Jan 23, 2022
    But Duran and Leonard are legends..
     
  12. northpaw

    northpaw Obsessed with Boxing Full Member

    15,514
    8,269
    Jun 5, 2010
    No. Even the guys he "lost" to or drew with, he went back in with them, some for trilogies. Guys that were tough comp for him and stylistic problems (Sugar Seales, Monroe, Watts, Antufermo etc.....)

    There's no one that you can really even say he missed, maybe Ronnie Harris but Harris wasn't a duck.............just never happened.
     
  13. greynotsoold

    greynotsoold Boxing Addict Full Member

    5,078
    5,694
    Aug 17, 2011
    I knew he never fought Caveman Lee. My apparently failing eyesight had me believing that he beat Don Lee.
     
  14. mcvey

    mcvey VIP Member Full Member

    95,349
    25,268
    Jun 2, 2006
    Not at middleweight.
     
  15. Saintpat

    Saintpat Obsessed with Boxing Full Member

    20,627
    20,669
    Jun 26, 2009
    I’d say you’re also missing the obvious. As we saw with the on-again/off-again Hearns fight, when an opponent falls out (as Mickey Goodwin did), that fight is off. There is no legal nor moral obligation to keep that date AND have to fight an opponent from the same gym as the original opponent. Goodwin pulling out scratched the fight … Hagler’s side then could have said, ‘OK, Manny, that didn’t work out — sorry your guy got hurt. We can move the date back a couple of months and go ahead and do Hearns OR we can do Benitez and circle back to Hearns.’

    Simple. You’re acting like someone came down from the mountaintop with stone tablets obligating Hagler to fight a substitute on the same date chosen by the manager of the guy who handled the first opponent. Yet when the Hearns fight fell apart (the first time), there was nothing that made Hagler fight yet another Kronk guy when he fought next. So that’s a complete wash.

    It’s also preposterous to think that Steward was going to put a huge purse and opportunity for Hearns (to fight Hagler) aside because Caveman Lee or Mickey Goodwin didn’t get a shot at Hagler. (You say it would make negotiations more difficult … you think Manny’s going to tell Tommy, ‘Sorry, but if Caveman or Mickey didn’t get the fight as a sacrificial lamb, I’m going to cost you millions of dollars to teach Arum and those conniving Petronellis a lesson.’ When did Steward ever do anything like that?

    And you’d have to show me some reports of Obel turning down step-aside money to convince me that it happened. The boxing press (and in Hagler’s case in particular the Boston press) were pretty reliable in reporting such things (like reporting Roldan’s three step-aside deals) but you’re assuming in this case they missed it entirely. Hell, the Petronellis/Arum would have had ever incentive to tell the world ‘the only reason we’re fighting this guy again instead of a more attractive fight like Hearns or Benitez is because this guy wouldn’t take our very reasonable step-aside offer to wait a few months for his shot.’ (Hagler vs. Obel II drew a whopping 2,000 fans and no network wanted it — HBO only agreed to do it as part of signing a three- or four-fight deal … I forget which … with Hagler.)

    The point is Hagler-Benitez COULD have been made. It wasn’t. The universe didn’t conspire to create an impossible set of circumstances to make a desirable fight (it would have been Marvin’s first PPV, with bigger purses) and require Hagler to instead fight Lee/Goodwin and Obel as his only outings that year.
     
    Anubis likes this.