Adamek-Toney: Where Is the Love?

By Robert Ecksel on July 2, 2012
Adamek-Toney: Where Is the Love?
James Toney will hang in there, he’s nothing if not tough, and he will give it all he’s got

Odds are that heavyweight contender Tomasz Adamek, who looked unimpressive in his last fight against one-armed Eddie Chambers…

Odds are that heavyweight contender Tomasz Adamek (46-2, 28 KOs), who was unimpressive in his last fight against one-armed Eddie Chambers, will look more impressive against his next opponent. That opponent with be two-fisted, but he will also be 44 years old, and his name is James “Lights Out” Toney (74-7-3, 45 KOs).

If all goes according to plan, the two men will square off at the Prudential Center in Newark, New Jersey on Saturday afternoon, Sept. 8.

Toney has made it clear, without saying as much in so few words, that he’ll continue fighting till his dying day. Be it in a ring, be it in a cage, be it anywhere, what’s the difference? Toney is a fighter. Fight is what James Toney does. There’s no fallback position for the future Hall of Famer. He’s not being groomed to be a trainer. A second career as a fight analyst on TV is out of the question. James is way too outspoken for that. So he will fight whoever will give him a fight, and it looks like Adamek is the one.

Adamek’s promoter, Main Events’ Kathy Duva, gets a lot of love from the boxing establishment, and perhaps deservedly so. Her Fight Nights on NBC Sports Network has been renewed for a second and third season to heartfelt hosannas and applause. Partly it’s the novelty of televising what are in effect club shows from obscure locations. Partly it’s that outlets for broadcasting boxing are few and far between, which hurts the sport no less than the fighters (although there are old-timers who insist that TV killed boxing). And partly it’s because of Duva herself.

But James Toney, whatever his past accomplishments, is a somewhat questionable choice as Adamek’s next opponent. Granted, he has name recognition. And some of his glorious old-school moves are still intact. But Toney is pretty much toast at this point, his last win over Bobby Gunn notwithstanding, as his last several fights over the last several years have shown.

Adamek feasted on older fighters when he transitioned from cruiser to heavyweight, before he was pummeled into submission by Vitali Klitschko last year. Goral revealed tons of heart and fighting spirit that night in Wroclaw, Poland. But the referee Massimo Barrovecchio did Adamek, no less than boxing, a big favor by stopping it when he did.

Many hoped that Adamek’s fight against fellow contender Chambers, however uninspiring, was a sign of things to come. The bout against Toney suggests otherwise. James will hang in there, he’s nothing if not tough, as he always does, and he will give it all he’s got. But it’s almost a foregone conclusion that Adamek will pound out a decision against the overweight former great whose mobility, reflexes and judgment are less sound than his chin.

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  1. bk don 08:01am, 07/10/2012

    Haye v Adamek could be a good fight.

  2. TEX HASSLER 10:17pm, 07/09/2012

    If Adamek could look good losing a decision to Chambers then he looked good even though they cheated Chambers out of the win. Adamek seems to be slipping down hill now.

  3. Ken Hissner 07:51am, 07/07/2012

    I thought Chambers defeated Adamek by a point or two.  I cannot believe Toney is coming in next.  Dave Tiberi kicked his butt in 1992 and that’s 20 years ago.

  4. the thresher 02:22pm, 07/03/2012

    Maybe if we stopped calling them “future Hall of Famers,” they would get the idea that their legacy means something to some fans. 

    Toney was sliced and diced by Lebedev. It’s over.

  5. mike schmidt 12:10pm, 07/03/2012

    Razor Ruddock is looking for a scrap—AND HE IS NOT ROLLING IN FAT- -S IN GREAT SHAPE. Well fearless Editor I am so happy that quality boxing matches are back on regular TV so that new fans will be attracted to the sport.  If they can sign the winner to a Kimbo Slice match—well we are all in pugilistic heaven !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  6. bk don 05:03am, 07/03/2012

    I’ve been a big fan of the matchmaking they’ve done for the main events of the NBC Sports series. Main Events has deserved to be applauded for the fights they’ve put on. Now, if they give us Adamek v Toney they deserve to be heavily criticized. I rather see Michael Grant get a rematch then I would see Toney get a shot. You’re telling me there’s not a top 20 or 25 heavyweight they could’ve dug up to face Adamek. Toney has done nothing to get a TV date and the last thing the sport needs is him at press conference slurring and continuing to show the effects of the damage he’s received in the ring. Now that I think about it, maybe it’s what the sport needs to highlight the fact that these old men are being allowed to get into the ring and get there brains beaten in.

  7. Joe 04:19am, 07/03/2012

    Lights Out is great from the promotional aspect of the deal.  We should get some great sound bites for this matchup - and I don’t think James will get stopped either.  At least we get two names we know.

  8. Irish Frankie Crawford Beat Saijo 07:46pm, 07/02/2012

    Why not Acelino Freitas….he’s coming off a win….no wait I got it, RJJ he’s coming off a win too….you can’t make this shit up….unless you’re the Chief Justice of the SCOTUS….then anything is possible!

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