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#1
Old 11-12-2012, 01:33 AM
BIGPOPPAPUMP
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Post Comments Thread For: 'Fighting Words' - Parade of Olympian Mismatches Begins

by David P. Greisman - He had just been recognized as the best heavyweight in the world, at least among amateurs. It didn’t take long for him to test himself against the best pro. Eight months after winning the gold medal in the 1956 Olympics, Pete Rademacher stepped into the ring against champion Floyd Patterson and lost via sixth-round knockout.

It was Rademacher’s pro debut.

It’s a story that’s been told time and again, one that stood out even in the different competitive paradigm of six decades ago. But other boxers were also moved quickly after acclaimed amateur careers.

Leon Spinks won the lineal heavyweight championship in his eighth fight, barely a year after turning pro; Floyd Mayweather Jr. won the lineal junior lightweight championship in his 18th fight, two years after turning pro; Sugar Ray Leonard won the lineal welterweight championship in his 26th fight, less than three years after turning pro; and Oscar De La Hoya won a title belt at 130 pounds in his 12th pro fight, 16 months after making his debut.

Most of today’s American Olympians are still budding prospects after four years, by the time the next cycle of potential, formerly amateur stars first get paid to step into the ring.

Luis Yanez. Gary Russell Jr. Sadam Ali. Javier Molina. Demetrius Andrade. Shawn Estrada. Deontay Wilder. Of the nine Americans on the 2008 squad, they are the seven who turned pro afterward. None has captured a world title yet. None has even beaten an opponent of note to prove that he belongs.

At least one — Russell Jr. — appears that he clearly does. But despite what he has shown of his blazing speed and formidable power, we don’t yet know for sure, not after 21 pro fights, and not after nearly four years after he made his debut on a January 2009 episode of Showtime’s “ShoBox: The New Generation.” [Click Here To Read More]
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#2
Old 11-12-2012, 09:49 AM
nycsmooth
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the worst class of Olympians in my life time, and that goes back a long way...
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