Apparently, “Big Daddy” Wants That Smoke

By Johnathan Lee Iverson on December 3, 2018
Apparently, “Big Daddy” Wants That Smoke
Their rivalry goes back to the ’88 Olympics, when the two met for the gold medal match.

A pleasant procession of heavyweight kings were welcomed to the stage in Los Angeles, by the always classy, Jimmy Lennon, Jr….

One by one they were welcomed to the stage in Los Angeles, by the always classy, Jimmy Lennon, Jr. It was one of the more sedated features among the festivities surrounding the heavyweight championship between Deontay Wilder and Tyson Fury at The Staples Center.

It was a pleasant procession of heavyweight kings, and Gerry Cooney. As each name was rattled off: Michael Spinks, James “Buster” Douglas, Ernie Shavers, Gerry Cooney, Lennox Lewis, Riddick Bowe, and Evander Holyfield, some of my fondest heavyweight boxing memories began to stir—Evander Holyfield vs. Riddick Bowe I and that glorious 10th round, James “Buster” Douglas shocking everyone in the known universe with his toppling of “Iron” Mike Tyson. I remember the howls about a “long count” back then too. Lennox Lewis being “mugged” during his first encounter with Evander Holyfield, Michael Spinks stunning the great Larry Holmes, Gerry Cooney mauling none other than Ken Norton, and Ernie Shavers decapitating somebody. How wonderful it was to see each and every one of those heavyweight luminaries receive their just ovations, as it should be for the most gallant and legendary of gladiators.

However, despite their days of fistic glory being long gone, it appeared, though brief, that some feuds are still as primed as ever. Riddick “Big Daddy” Bowe and Lennox Lewis are forever conjoined in pugilistic lore as one of the great heavyweight fights that never was. One of those memories that stirred as each fighter’s name was announced in succession was Riddick Bowe’s infamous dumping of his WBC title, which most have interpreted as a theatrical dodge of Lennox Lewis. Their rivalry goes back as far as the ’88 Olympics, when the two met for the gold medal match. Lewis, representing Canada would go on to stop the popular American, Bowe in the second round. As Riddick’s star ascended in the professional heavyweight ranks the inevitable calls to avenge that amateur blemish vs. the then dangerous Lennox Lewis were deafening. As with most things in boxing we will never know the truth as to why that fight never materialized. Yet, much like the infamous face to face between the two following Bowe’s first fight with Holyfield, Riddick has always had a penchant for, at least appearing to want to scrap it up with Lewis, as was the case in Los Angeles as the two rivals took the stage along with their peers to attempt a photo op. Fortunately, for onlookers, at least this time around, nothing came of it; and I’d say that was a good thing, especially for Bowe, who clearly has grown into his prize fighting moniker.

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  1. The Barker 03:19pm, 01/26/2019

    @JamesSteele you, the citizen.

  2. JamesSteele 03:04pm, 01/26/2019

    This is what you typed:

    Which is why I said
    “you’re another product of our woefully inadequate public school system…”

    Now you’re shifting this to criticizing US leadership. So what person (politics or in any other leadership position) do you think is the single most counter productive person in the USA?

  3. The Barker 12:47pm, 01/26/2019

    @JamesSteele please keep your homoerotic musings between you and your fantasies of Mr. Cooney. If you put this much stock in opinion pieces, then I can pretty much guess your voting patterns and why US leadership is as wanting as it is.

  4. JamesSteele 12:31pm, 01/26/2019

    To: The Barker of Dickville: I already explained that Cooney is not the point. Journalism is supposed to be objective and fact based neither of which the feckless, dickless Johnathan Lee Iverson is. You must stop licking Johnathan’s boots and be a man. You can do it. Grow some Cajones and admit you’re another product of our woefully inadequate public school system and so wrong on this subject that I’d need charts and graphs just to organize all the ways you’re wrong.

  5. The Barker 06:41am, 01/26/2019

    @JamesSteele try not to trip over yourself while serving Massa Clooney:) “Retract?” How silly are you? It’s an opinion piece peppered with facts. If this is where you get your news, then you clearly have no idea what journalism is.

  6. JamesSteele 06:09am, 01/26/2019

    To: The Barker it’s time for you to stop saying stupid stuff. Cooney was not a hero of mine and if you could have seen me cheering for Shavers when he had Holmes down (but not out) you would know who you’re talking to. When you say “this isn’t some deep investigation piece” you’re saying it’s not important for a journalist to be accurate. The other thing is you’re defending Johnathan Lee Iverson the journalist who should come on this site and retract the fact that Shavers was not a King in boxing. In those days King’s got crowned with real professional world titles so now the question goes back to you. Why are you carrying Mr. Iverson’s water?

  7. The Barker 01:44pm, 01/25/2019

    @JamesSteele are you truly that butt hurt over this writer’s Cooney quip? Was he a hero of yours? This wasn’t some in depth investigation piece. Lighten up! As I recall it, The Greatest spoke in mythical terms about Shavers’ vaunted power. I think that’s validation enough. Although Shavers wasn’t a heavyweight champ, he certainly wasn’t a hype job either. Refer to Holmes vs. Cooney:)

  8. JamesSteele 02:50pm, 12/08/2018

    Earth to: Johnathan Lee Iverson I immediately noticed the same thing that Lucas McCain did which was Ernie Shavers did NOT win a heavyweight title. Very sloppy, lazy reporting we see in sports and politics to not do any fact checking.

  9. tlig 10:12am, 12/06/2018

    @Your Name, I respectfully disagree. I agree both these guys were great fighters but today’s heavyweights are no joke either. This always happens in sport however- athletes not being respected in their day only to be overcompensated later (often to deride whoever is currently at the top of the game).

    Fury, Wilder, Joshua are no easy outs for either of these men.

  10. Your Name 02:46pm, 12/04/2018

    Anyone of these guys would wipe the floor with anyone today.

  11. Lucas McCain 06:01am, 12/04/2018

    “Pleasant procession of heavyweight kings, and Gerry Cooney,” is a funny line.  But don’t forget that Earnie Shavers was not a heavyweight king either.  Maybe he should or could have been, but sometimes the stars don’t line up right—see also Jerry Quarry and Jimmy Young.

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