There has never been, in my memory, this sort of blackout for boxing. Coronavirus is laying people low, and the lack of clarity on the virus, and when people can convene, for sporting events, means no fights to watch. No new ones, anyway…
We've done a couple Watch Parties at Facebook Fightnight Live, and other outlets are following suit.
That doesn't mean the world doesn't stop turning. Boxers are people, too, so they are still making news. Jackasses like BJ Saunders, my Loser of the Weekend, for example. And regular folks are fighting, as the very best pugilists do, and showing courage galore, heart, soul–so, my Who Won the Weekend goes to the people who are caring for persons whose COVID-19 symptoms are more than mild, and is affecting their breathing negatively.
I mean the nurses, the docs, the technicians, and beyond that, the custodians who clean the facilities…and the people who have to go in to work, leave their homes, and do stuff like pharmacy work, and garbage collection, etc etc.
Regular people are stepping up, and showing themselves to be all-stars during a most difficult period. Mega props to those people, they won the weekend, and beyond. What does the NYF Squad say?
‘”Tiger King” on Netflix won the weekend as it was the trending topic on the social media-sphere,” said Abe Gonzalez. “I haven't seen it and don't really care to watch it but it did capture the majority attention of the streaming public.
“The losers of the weekend are those idiots doing all of things that the doctors are advising not to do, just to get some social media attention.”
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“Man, it's hard to think of winners right now,” said David Phillips. “It's weird to go to Boxrec and see a blank slate for weekend results. It's odder still to go to the drug store and see a sign requiring all patrons to stay 6 feet apart and blue taped boxes in the check-out lanes telling you where to stand. Or, when you are really feeling anxious, wondering if that cough you just made clearing your throat means something sinister. I guess what I would say is if we are alive and well at this moment, we are winners. If we are not, it doesn't look like there's anyone coming to save us. This virus will end. Things will get to a “new normal” and we will adjust. It's just that the anxiety over health and personal wealth is pervasive. It's hard to get your head around all of this and what it means. The constant uncertainty can be paralyzing. I can only think of one other “before and after” event in my life. That is to say the world looked one way before and a different way after. That was 9/11. I think the coronavirus is the second. I sure as hell hope we turn out to be better people this time than we did last. We need to change.”
“Has there been any boxing on, at all, this weekend,” asked Pete Carvill. “In terms of the fights, I'd say the big winners this weekend have been the Sauerlands, who have taken the cancellation of boxing on the chin and managed to dredge up some interest in a bunch of AI-generated using the EA Sports Fight Night Champion game. All this seems to prove that most boxing nuts will watch anything.
“Outside of boxing, the winners this week are NY Governor Andrew Cuomo, who's shown what true leadership is, and everyone who wants to see the back of Trump, because he's shown just how unfit for office he is (25th Amendment some time soon would be nice). The losers this week are all the poor bastards who are going to suffer and die because President Game Show Host sat on his small, orange hands when the time came to lead. History was never going to remember Trump kindly and this week has underlined that.”
“WINNER: Showtime Boxing and the WBC,” opined Gayle Falkenthal. “Stephen Espinoza announced on the Showtime Boxing podcast (excellent and second only to the Talk Box Podcast) last week the network would be airing classic fights from its video vault. The first it decided to tee up was the fan-friendly Vazquez vs Marquez trilogy from 2007-2008. The perfect popcorn fights full of Mexican on Mexican violencia. I hadn't realized how bad my boxing withdrawal symptoms had become until I watched the fights on Saturday. Simply a thrill to see these two warriors having at it in the ring. All three fights had the WBC World Super Bantamweight title in the ring. The WBC via Nancy Rodriguez and Mauricio Sulaiman put together a live Facebook Watch party with Israel Vazquez and a handful of boxing media, taking questions and commenting on the fight action. Hey Stephen, give your buddy Leonard Ellerbe a call and let's do the same with a few classic Floyd fights!
LOSER: People who refuse to practice social distancing. Stay the fuck home.”
“This weekend's winner was Showtime,” said Matt Andrzejewski. “They made the smart decision to air the Marquez-Vazquez trilogy. From the looks of my Twitter timeline, it was a smashing success.
“In regards to the weekend's loser I am going to say Top Rank. Why? Well they have an extensive library of fights that are unreleased and unavailable on any other platforms (this includes YouTube). The question for fans like myself since they cut a deal with ESPN several years ago was whether or not they would ever release this extensive vault of fights. Well if there was ever a time it is now. Many like myself are stuck at home for the foreseeable future and craving such content. I would have loved to watch these old fights the past couple weeks and even have taken to Twitter requesting the release of this vault. So far no response. I urge Top Rank to do the right thing and release their vault so fans like myself have something to occupy our time and get our minds off other things in these difficult times.”
“The people who live in the United States took Ls this weekend because the President hasn’t got an idea what to do during this situation,” said Chris Glover.
“Winning the weekend for each other -The cream of the crop of good souls is rising to the top,” said Joelle Azoulay. “While leadership is not doing their job we are taking care of each other. This week I’m inspired by the creativity of friends who hosted online design chats, a Saturday night dance party, and Yang Gang book club. We reviewed ‘Maid' (a book by Stephanie Land) tonight. A couple of people I know including myself have written notes to neighbors in search of elderly who need groceries or anything else. We know no man is an island and we need to take care of each other.
“Taking the L-You’ll be happy to know that I’ve heard some older people who would have voted for Trump again see him with brand new eyes are having an “a-ha” moment and “he’s a complete idiot” realizations. If you’re having trouble sleeping these days hope this at least brings you solace, Woodsy!”
In terms of boxing, the big winner has to be the World Boxing Super Series. Their virtual heavyweight tournament was a fun way to stay relevant in the sport while advertising their brand. The middleweight tournament starts this week, and I'll be watching.”
“The loser for the week has to be the federal government,” said Jeremy Herriges. “New York is being devastated by COVID-19 and they desperately need help. There are people dying because the federal government isn't doing enough to help a state on the brink. Governor Cuomo is doing an amazing job of providing leadership during a dark time, but the federal government needs to step in and show the country that they care about citizens and not just the state of the stock market. Things are getting worse here in the Chicagoland area, and I fear that we aren't going to receive an abundance of federal help either. It all starts at the top with President Trump, and he's proving that he's more enthralled by his popularity and poll numbers than he is with the struggles of everyday working-class people. His press conferences are a disgrace and his conduct is selfish and does nothing to show empathy in the slightest. It's time for humanity and compassion to be at the forefront in place of partisan politics and ego.”
Said Ryan Songalia, “Mike Tyson won the weekend because he apparently just beat Muhammad Ali by decision to win the WBSS Fantasy Tournament. Easily fight of the weekend. Otherwise, ‘Tommy Boy' won the weekend for me. That movie is timeless, we lost Chris Farley too soon.”