Monday, October 27, 2014

100 Reasons Why I Love Boxing

On a number of levels, boxing in 2014 hasn't been particularly notable, especially in the United States. This year has been plagued by overly cautious matchmaking, blatant ducking of opponents, mismatches/showcases, an explosion of pay per views (many of which have had very weak undercards), fighters putting themselves on ice and promoters (or managers) who still won't work together. Sure, there have been some very good moments in the ring, but not enough for my liking. In the midst of a disappointing year, it's easy to get caught up in the negativity of the sport – I know that I can be guilty of this.

As a personal corrective, I wanted to list why boxing still brings me so much joy and highlight the aspects of the sport that keep me tuned in, week after week, even with the recent paucity of memorable fight action. Without further ado, here are 100 reasons why I love boxing:  

1.    Bernard Hopkins’ lead right hand from distance

2.    Floyd Mayweather making an opponent miss by an inch

3.    Juan Manuel Marquez’s left uppercut

4.    Wladimir Klitschko’s jab

5.    Nonito Donaire’s left hook

6.    Anytime Gennady Golovkin cocks his hand to throw a power punch

7.    Carl Froch somehow finding a way to win

8.    The Olympic gold medalist making his pro debut

9.    The prized prospect taking his first real step-up fight

10.  The “opponent” who wasn’t there to lose

11.  The underdog who upsets the grand plans of the powers that be

12.  The avoided fighter who finally gets a shot

13.  An overlooked or obscure fighter making his mark

14.  Boxers who overcome harrowing upbringings

15.  Fathers handing down the sport to their sons

16.  Roman Gonzalez’s inside fighting

17.  Brandon Rios’ fearlessness

18.  Vasyl Lomachenko’s desire to be great

19.  Keith Thurman’s promise

20.  Marcos Maidana’s will

21.  The buzz of the MGM Grand right before a Manny Pacquiao fight

22.  Checking out the glitzy crowd in Las Vegas

23.  Checking out the less-than-glitzy crowd in Atlantic City

24.  Michael Buffer with the microphone; a big event is happening

25.  Steve Smoger in the ring; a memorable fight seems more likely to happen

26.  Harold Lederman’s scorecard after three rounds

27.  Jim Watt saying “Lovely stuff” after a good combination

28.  Larry Merchant’s quips

29.  Paulie Malignaggi telling it like it is

30.  Arguing about a disputed fight until 5 a.m. on a Sunday morning

31.  The glow of a spectacular knockout or a huge upset

32.  The gallows humor on Twitter during a boring fight card, especially if it’s a pay per view

33.  Mocking inane press conferences and conference calls

34.  Having drinks after the fights with boxing fans and writers

35.  Taking a long weekend to see a live fight

36.  Meeting a boxing fan in person that you had only known on social media.

37.  The timeless boxing arguments

38.  The way the sport respects its history

39.  The recognition of past champions and famous fighters who are live at the fight card

40.  The memorial 10-count for our fallen heroes

41.  The Hall of Fame debates

42.  Watching old fights on You Tube

43.  Discovering a new, exciting fighter

44.  The passion of British, Mexican and Puerto Rican boxing fans

45.  The elegant string quartet that plays the national anthems on the Sauerland broadcasts

46.  Those marathon Saturdays, watching boxing all over the world

47.  An unexpected great fight

48.  That Friday in January when ESPN’s Friday Night Fights returns after its fall hiatus.

49.  Teddy Atlas’ unique brand of craziness

50.  Boardwalk Hall

51.  The StubHub Center

52.  The Bell Centre

53.  A boxing crowd in Manchester, England

54.  The energy of a fight at Madison Square Garden

Miguel Cotto on Puerto Rican Day Parade weekend

56.  Toga Bar

57.  Listening to the great trainers in the corner

58.  The obscure trainer who finally gets his shot at the limelight

59.  The veteran trainer who might just have his last shot at a champion

60.  Fighters who always add to their repertoire

61.  A winning fighter getting mobbed back at the fight hotel

62.  Talking with boxing fans who travel all over for big fights

63.  Taking someone to his/her first live fight

64.  The crowd rising after a knockdown

65.  A fighter who somehow rises after a pulverizing knockdown

66.  The late-round rally

67.  The opening-round blitz

68.  The killer instinct

69.  The veteran spoiler

70.  The journeyman who travels the world taking fights on short notice, often for short money

71.  The gatekeeper who just might snuff out a victory over an unready prospect

72.  The entitled fighter who gets his comeuppance in the ring

73.  The lower-weight guys who throw 90 punches a round

74.  The pride of Japanese boxers

75.  A hardass Mexican pressure fighter

76.  A badass Argentine fighter

77.  The self-misery of boxing fans

78.  The protectionism of boxing fans when outsiders insult their sport

79.  Watching a fight after a long day of work

80.  The crazy-ass conspiracy theories rampant among boxing fans

81.  After many years, how the sting of your favorite fighter losing never goes away

82.  Watching excellence in the ring

83.  When two boxers embrace after a hard-fought match

84.  The way British networks interview both fighters side-by-side sitting ringside

85.  To hell with work, I’m having a good boxing discussion

86.  Making a new friend who shares your love of the sport

87.  Fighters who win their first title belt in their mid-30s

88.  A perfectly executed shoulder roll

89.  Merciless body punchers

90.  Pinpoint counterpunchers

91.  Unconventional punches

92.  Fighters trading knockdowns in the same round

93.  When judges score a close fight correctly

94.  Champions who take on all comers

95.  The quest for greatness

96.  Watching a fighter survive after a knockdown

97.  Watching an expert finisher

98.  Trainers who tell it like it is the corner

99.  The come-from-behind, final-round knockout

100.Counting down the hours until fight night

Adam Abramowitz is the head writer and founder of
He is also a member of the Transnational Boxing Rankings Board.
@snboxing on twitter
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