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Boxing UnderGround >> Lets fix boxing


8/15/12 8:19 AM
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hackett
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PoundforPound - 
hackett - Ten point must system is actually more subjective than the current system. I like headgear for am boxing. A bit more safety; if they want to go pro its a different standard and that's reasonable.

I'm predicting next Olympics will be a step down, worst of both worlds, if they go through with those changes. Watch the excuses and sour grapes for our poor performance.


The ten point must system is subjective but at least it takes more into account than the current joke of a system, which only counts touches and completely ignores things like ring generalship and defense.

Headgear wasn't used in the Olympics until 1984 and it never seemed to hurt the sport any before then (people like Laszlo Papp, Cassius Clay, George Foreman, and Sugar Ray Leonard all won their gold medals without headgear.)

The boxing culture in the US is geared more towards a pro style so these changes should benefit us. Mexico too might be helped by this: they are dominant in pro boxing but didn't bring home any Olympic medals this year either. That to me just shows how fundamentally removed from "real" boxing the amateur setup has been.

But if we STILL end up sucking you won't hear any excuses from me. Lord knows that USA Boxing needs to make many changes, from the way they are organized to the way they coach the athletes and test them (or don't test them) against international competition.

OK I'll say it again, headgear represents an improvement in safety per any study I can find and I've cited a few already. I'm open to anyone suggesting otherwise, but so far nothing. "WELL HACKETT, GEORGE FOREMAN DIDN'T WEAR IT" isn't useful.

If you count out the bad decisions in am boxing, including this Olympics, I think you'll find they stack up well against the ratio of good to bad decisions in pro's. Seriously. Not that it's necessarily anything to be proud of, but it's something to consider.

Also, the scoring system registers any clean scoring blow, not a "touch". If you learn it, train properly for it, you'll understand it and probably do okay. We just don't here in the US.

Again, I ask people to consider what am boxing is supposed to be. Look again at Chappie's definition and tell me what's wrong with this approach. If it isn't "real" to you, that's your problem at the end of the day. For my money all the talk about what a joke it is just gives our guys a way out when their performances aren't up to par.

P4P, Mexico has two bronze medals and a silver in 30+ years of Oly boxing so 2012 was nothing unusual -- their best boxing talent goes pro very young. Here we have more resources and should do better (and did, one gold and one bronze.)

Hey, hopefully we'll improve though.
8/15/12 5:23 PM
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PoundforPound
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Edited: 08/15/12 5:31 PM
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hackett - OK I'll say it again, headgear represents an improvement in safety per any study I can find and I've cited a few already. I'm open to anyone suggesting otherwise, but so far nothing. "WELL HACKETT, GEORGE FOREMAN DIDN'T WEAR IT" isn't useful.


The point isn't that "George Foreman didn't wear it." It's that Olympic boxing was held for years and years without it, and there was never a problem.

In regards to what boxing is supposed to be...I saw plenty of occasions during these Games where boxers would rush in heedless of taking any punishment precisely because they had the gigantic head gear on to protect them. And it was a viable strategy too because they got to score their clean punches while the counters they were hit with didn't get scored a lot of times. I guess they weren't considered clean enough?

Personally I'd rather that our guys train to get good at boxing not at this artificial simulation of boxing.

In any case AIBA is going to make changes so we can kiss this version of the amateurs goodbye, thankfully.
8/16/12 7:01 AM
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hackett
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Never a problem? Olympic boxing has always been controversial in fact, and efforts to ban it have come from many circles. Headgear as a proven safety measure (again, per every study I've seen -- keeping my mind open here) helped silence them. That's why there's no pro boxing in Norway but the amatuer game is alive there.

And actually, boxers weren't "rushing in" all the time in London. Olympic headgear isn't "gigantic" -- it's smaller than what's used in sparring in fact. Your idea that counter punching doesn't score is also inaccurate; many of the highest scoring guys of 2012 Games were counter punchers.

If you watch enough you'll see the kind of tactics common to ammy success. They use the ring differently, stay center so each judge can see a scoring blow, maintain distance a bit differently, aim a little higher so the head snaps back a bit.... it's still boxing; there's nothing "artificial" about getting punched in the head. But it's different from the pro's, mostly because safety is a bigger issue, and I see nothing wrong with that.

I get the feeling you don't pay a lot of attention to Olympic boxing, didn't watch enough to really grasp the style... it's far from perfect but it's also not what you think it is. What will it be in Rio? Something different but I doubt it will be better, especially for us in the US. Someone bump this in 2016, I guess.
8/19/12 5:02 PM
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buddie
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Look, Olympic boxing is broken, busted, bad. I love boxing, especially amateur boxing AND the US team should be much better. But the boxing in the Olympics needs to be fixed and until that is addressed, it will continue to be bad for boxing.

http://maxboxing.com/news/sub-lead/atlas-back-in-the-pristine-world-of-pro-boxing

8/19/12 9:18 PM
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419
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One of the reasons people tune in for swimming and gymnastics is the storyline. We get a glimpse into the athletes' lives and can connect with them on a personal level. Many of the boxers representing the USA have compelling stories, but for whatever reason they aren't featured as much. Perhaps a reality television show following the team would help. It would also be a good idea to select the team a year or two in advance and have them compete on the international level.
8/20/12 12:15 PM
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buddie
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419 - One of the reasons people tune in for swimming and gymnastics is the storyline. We get a glimpse into the athletes' lives and can connect with them on a personal level. Many of the boxers representing the USA have compelling stories, but for whatever reason they aren't featured as much. Perhaps a reality television show following the team would help. It would also be a good idea to select the team a year or two in advance and have them compete on the international level.

That IS a good idea, so long as there is not "artificial" competition. I can not stomach the reality tv 'elimination' format.

Just a straight documentary style show about guys trying to make the team, full fights on tv (3 round fights are perfect, or even highlights, but please no 'slo mo' shots to music out of context, ala 'The Contender').

I'd also hope they didn't try to copy TUF. That would only be a failure, no living in the same house etc. Just show it for what it is, poor kids trying to fight for their future.
8/20/12 5:30 PM
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PoundforPound
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Edited: 08/20/12 5:35 PM
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hackett - If you watch enough you'll see the kind of tactics common to ammy success. They use the ring differently, stay center so each judge can see a scoring blow, maintain distance a bit differently, aim a little higher so the head snaps back a bit....


Yeah, they do a lot of things differently. But you seem to be one of the very few who actually likes the current rule set...seemingly everyone else was complaining about the boring fights and protesting the horrible scoring.

Not just sore loser Americans either. Countries like Russia, China, and Thailand all complained during these Olympics.

What will it be like in Rio? I imagine it will be something very similar to what we had pre-1984. A return to the old days is bound to be better in my opinion, but then again almost anything would be an improvement as far as I'm concerned.

One thing I do hope they keep when they go to the 10 point must is the announcing of the scores after every round. Just so that the fighters know where they stand.
8/20/12 7:37 PM
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buddie
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There was clearly a lot of funny business and bullshit going on at the games. I defy anyone to say that there wasn't. As sure as I'm sure the sun rose this morning, I'm sure that the AIBA is corrupt. That doesn't change the fact that the US team was ill prepared and lacking in a lot of areas, but it does mean that 1. People no longer view boxing - even in the Olympics - as legit. 2. It isn't fair to the fighters. The AIBA needs to be blown up and US boxing needs to start over and make some sweeping changes well before 2016.

8/21/12 3:51 PM
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buddie
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http://espn.go.com/boxing/story/_/id/8229973/andre-ward-wants-changes-cure-us-amateur-boxing-woes

Must read + spot on (video) analysis from Teddy Atlas
8/22/12 8:02 AM
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419
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I agree Buddie, boxing is dramatic enough; there is no need for artificial competition. Follow the top contenders as they train, show the box-offs, then follow the team for a year or two's worth of training and international competition.
10/23/12 3:29 AM
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mikegoldberghasgrownonme
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Provided the headgear allows for good vision I would think the discontinuation of headgear would just result in an increase of brain trauma in a sport that is dangerous enough
10/23/12 3:29 AM
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mikegoldberghasgrownonme
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Provided the headgear allows for good vision I would think the discontinuation of headgear would just result in an increase of brain trauma in a sport that is dangerous enough
10/23/12 3:52 AM
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PoundforPound
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Edited: 10/23/12 3:55 AM
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Amateur fights only last 3 rounds. Brain injuries shouldn't be a big problem and as far as I know they weren't pre-1984.

The adoption of headgear that year seems to have been a kneejerk reaction to a problem that didn't exist.
10/24/12 2:35 AM
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Chappie
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PoundforPound - Amateur fights only last 3 rounds. Brain injuries shouldn't be a big problem and as far as I know they weren't pre-1984.

The adoption of headgear that year seems to have been a kneejerk reaction to a problem that didn't exist.

2/12/13 8:44 PM
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buddie
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TTT before boxing is also eliminated from the Olympics
2/12/13 8:58 PM
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PoundforPound
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Unbelievable...an Alexander Karelin vignette from the '88 Games is one of my most vivid childhood Olympic memories.

Can't imagine the Olympics without wrestling. :(
2/12/13 10:04 PM
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buddie
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Its damn near impossible to screw up something as incredible as the Olympics, yet somehow the IOC has succeeded brilliantly at it.
2/13/13 7:07 AM
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HULC
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mikegoldberghasgrownonme - Provided the headgear allows for good vision I would think the discontinuation of headgear would just result in an increase of brain trauma in a sport that is dangerous enough

Headgear doesn't protect against brain trauma, and boxing is one of the safest sports in the olympics already.

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