Duran’s Place: Memories Made of This

By Michael Schmidt on August 15, 2013
Duran’s Place: Memories Made of This
“That performance could be compared to that of any great fighter who ever lived.”

“You could see that this kid really and truly had it,” said Arcel. “He knew how to fight. Right from the very start I saw that he was a natural fighter…”

La Tasca de Duran: Duran’s Bar and Restaurant

Street: Calle Alberto Navarro, Reservations: 213-0100, latascadeduran@hotmail.com

April 17, 2013

Objects in Rearview Mirrors

It is a warm Panama City evening and we are returning from Champion Roberto Duran’s Bar and Restaurant. Our driver interrupts my thoughts. “Well Mr. Smeet, what are your thoughts of our Grand Champion versus Mayweather or Pacquiao in their prime?” My answer is direct and personally honest to my own opinion. “Well, my friend, Mayweather would not have enough firepower to keep Duran, the Duran up to and including the first Leonard fight, quick of feet, hand and head movement, off of him. Duran by solid decision. You have to give consideration to the fact Mayweather has a superb defense, good wheels, and good whiskers.

“In terms of Manny, quite simply, Duran knocks him out inside of eight rounds.” 

In response our driver says “Interesting! Mayweather, yes I agree, and certainly I agree Duran beats Manny but by such knockout?” My response, again, is direct and simple: “Duran, in his prime, and motivated, a very difficult guy to hit with all the head feints, angles, shoulder movement, and, as well, a wonderful knockout artist. Conversely Manny’s defense is his offense and he is an easy guy to find a target on. Duran, the early Duran, quick of hand, quick of head and shoulder feints and angles, and most importantly quick of feet, would have found Manny early and often, while conversely Manny, early and often would not have found anything but Duran’s leather.”

This country of Panama is a place of beautiful scenery and beautiful women. Roberto Duran Stadium, shaped like a giant teacup, is the perfect venue for boxing. If you are a boxing person I assure you there is no better place to be. As for a prelude to a punch, what better place to be than at Duran’s place? It is always good to be back in Panama and, looking back, to savor a thought and sense of taste remembered.

Earlier in the Evening

It is a few days before prolific Panamanian promoter Rogelio Espino’s big multiple title fight card at Roberto Duran Stadium and I am in a taxi with some friends on my way to Roberto Duran’s Bar and Restaurant. 

You don’t have to be some world food media award winner or Le Cordon Bleu award winner to know when a place is beautiful and the food is delicious. Forget the fact that you’re a boxing fan. The menu is fantastic, the atmosphere is superb, and this bar restaurant has an old-world type of charm and sincerity much like its namesake. The Grand Champion. A ten out of ten, two thumbs up!

As we enter from the outdoor patio, my eyes light up. We are in luck as the Grand Champion Roberto Duran looks up from behind the bar area. Over One Hundred fights, boxing over five decades, from 1968 through to 2001, from age 16 to age 50 and still a pistol! 

Duran comes from behind the bar and greets us warmly. We are in further luck.  Referee Steve Smoger is present along with a young outstanding Panamanian trainer and a very solid up and coming 17-1 Panamanian WBC Continental belt holder. 

The First Course

There are four or five strategically placed TVs in the bar restaurant and they are playing continuous loops of the Great Champion’s fights. The six of us start out with a tossed garlic shrimp salad. It is fresh and superb. 

June 26, 1972 Ken Buchanan, 43 wins and 1 loss, WBA World Lightweight title, Madison Square Garden

The young and fresh Duran made his Madison Square Garden debut the previous September and as a first offering it was short and sweet as he starched Benny Huertas in one minute six seconds of the first round. He has set up a training camp at the Concord Hotel under the watchful eye of the legendary Ray Arcel. 

Arcel: “You could see that this kid really and truly had it. He knew how to fight. Right from the very start I saw that he was a natural fighter. He could think in the ring, which is very important. If you can think, you’re superior to anybody…”

Duran, as instructed, hurts the superb Champion Buchanan early. With the white of his mouth piece exposed, snarling like a wolf, all dusky skin and punch, Duran relentlessly pounds Buchanan to win the WBA lightweight title by 13th round TKO. Buchanan makes the unfortunate error of firing a few shots after the final bell with Duran responding in kind with a not so kind one of a kind shot.

The Second Course

We move on to plantain stuffed with sausage and as well some clams and garlic and Peruvian Ceviche. It is simply mouthwatering and something to savor in a perfect mix of lime and spiced peppers. It is well seasoned to the perfect point. 

Duran holds the Lightweight Title for six and a half years, defending it twelve times. 

January 21, 1978 Esteban DeJesus, 52 wins and 3 losses, Duran’s final lightweight title defense, WBC and WBA titles on the line, TKO in 12, Las Vegas

The Grand Champion Duran shows it all against his nemesis, the superb Esteban DeJesus, in their third and final rubber match. Duran comes out boxing, angles, movement, and a superb range finding jab. A countering check right hand uppercut nails DeJesus and a thudding right hand finishes the job.

Ray Arcel: “As a lightweight champion, he had no weaknesses at all, none at all. He knew what to do and how to do it. Every so often a natural comes along, like Sugar Ray Robinson, Benny Leonard, Tony Canzoneri, Henry Armstrong. It’s like any field. If the fellow knows his trade, he is a genius at it. He knows how to think, he knows what to do. It’s a god-given talent. Duran had it. The only enemy he had was Roberto Duran.”

The Main Course

June 20, 1980 Sugar Ray Leonard, 27 wins and no losses

A Few of the lads have ordered a sea bass filet with garlic and bass chorrillana style. It is the perfect mix of beef, seasoning spice and juices and is a plate to share. I’ve settled in to a New York prime cut steak and it is mouthwatering. The Champion Duran has graciously sat down with us to chat about Panama, the fights this coming weekend and, with a little prompting, his fights that are showing on the TV screen. Duran is the perfect host, humble throughout the evening, and a joy to be with.

Olympic Stadium, in Montreal, Quebec, Canada, is filled with 46,317 fans in the biggest fight since Ali vs. Frazier I. The fans are predominately pro-Duran. The 71 wins and 1 loss Duran, 29 years of age, having put in 12 title defenses over six and a half years surely could not be said to be at his prime. That is a considerable amount of mileage, physical and mental, for anyone. But then Duran is not anyone. He is DOORAN!  Leonard is certainly at his peak. Nevertheless, Duran shows exactly why he is a consensus top 10 pound-for-pound all-time great and a Ring Magazine top five pound-for-pound all-time great. 

In the second round the Champion Duran nails Leonard with a hook and lead right hand and sets the tempo for the rest of the fight. He will be the only fighter to defeat Sugar Ray Leonard at his absolute prime. 

Forget the urban myth and oft repeated changing of style by Leonard in the second fight. It was the first fight, Duran quick of foot, hand, with head and shoulder feints, right and left, inside and outside, which showed the better man. 

The second fight? Duran had already climbed the mountain and had bloated up to 180 pounds within a short five-month intervening point. Urban legend would have Leonard, that November 1980 rematch night, boxing Duran right out of the ring. The truth be told, listless and out of shape as Duran looked that night, scorecards were showing two point and one point difference through the eighth round Duran stoppage. It was not so much as what Leonard did differently as much as what Duran did differently. Quite simply it was not the same 72-1 Duran of foot speed, desire, and imposed skill and will.

The Last Course

June 16, 1983 Davey Moore

November 10, 1983 Marvin Hagler

February 24, 1989 Iran Barkley

We order some crème brulee and the Champion gives Steve Smoger a big hug and asks if I have enjoyed my evening. I respond, “I’m like a kid at Christmas having spent time with the Champion at his restaurant. Hah! Great food, and great friends!” I don’t think he fully realizes what enjoyment it has been for us, restaurant and boxing wise.  As said, if you love good food and atmosphere this is a terrific spot. If you’re a boxing fan, add the spice, as this is a place at some point, sooner than later, you should find yourself. 

Back to the Last Course

Moore

Having won the Lightweight and Welterweight titles Duran, on his birthday, in Madison Square Garden, destroys Davey Moore for the WBA World Light Middleweight Title. As in his June 1979 fight with Carlos Palomino in Madison Square Garden, the greatness is all there to be seen; the slugging, the aggressiveness, the boxing, the in and out movement, the head and shoulder feints, right, left, inside outside.

Twenty thousand, sixty-one people pack the Garden to celebrate a Grand Champion and his birthday. In attendance is the presence of Hagler, Leonard, Patterson, Chacon, Camacho, LaMotta, and Ali all adding to a mystic, magical, Madison Square Garden night. Further, the Great Champion Dempsey is honored, having passed away some two weeks earlier. As Larry Merchant commented when Duran destroyed Palomino, we were witnessing “a very special fighter.” 

Ray Arcel: “He was an artist. That performance could be compared to that of any great fighter who ever lived. It was masterful.” 

Hagler

We stretched the evening along with a few cold drinks. Hagler is 57-2-2, 29 years of age and in his prime. And after thirteen rounds, the elder statesmen, the Grand Champion Duran, is ahead on two cards. If the fight had been a present-day 12-rounder the Hagler legend landscape would have been accorded a very different Duran viewpoint. Duran simply does not have enough energy in the tank to finish the job and loses on one scorecard by two points and on the other two scorecards by one point. 

Ray Arcel: “He was a good boxer—he proved that with Marvin Hagler, going 15 rounds with him. If Hagler were a great fighter, Duran wouldn’t have come out for the 8th round, because after the 6th round Roberto was pretty well washed up. He was tired and went 9 rounds with his brain. That’s the way he could fight.”

Barkley

The evening is just about over and referee Smoger is transfixed and slightly shaking his head as we watch the February 24, 1989 Iran Barkley fight in which Duran wins the WBC Middleweight Title in Ring Magazine’s Fight of the Year. 

The Champion Duran pulls up a chair beside us and quietly watches the last few rounds. He is relaxed and we are all quietly enjoying the camaraderie as we watch what takes place on the TV screen. I ask Smoger why he’s shaking his head and he responds, “It’s just hard to imagine a guy Roberto’s size beating Barkley.” I mention that having stood beside Barkley gives one consideration to the fact that he is a very large cruiserweight stripped down to middleweight. 

With a few seconds left in the first round Duran has buckled Barkley’s knees with a superbly timed right hand over Barkley’s jab. Later in the fight, Barkley hits Duran so hard that Duran almost does a 360-degree pirouette as the two go toe-to-toe, little man with the big punch vs. big man with the big punch. By the 11th round Duran’s right hand houser plows though Barkley multiple times knocking the big man down. As delicious as that finishing crème brulee, Duran’s victory of Barkley, who is coming off a stunning knockout of Thomas Hearns, and some seven months later would fight the superb Michael Nunn to an IBF Middleweight Title majority decision loss over 12 rounds.

Gil Clancy, commentating; “What heart Duran has…This just confirms we are witnessing one of the greatest fighters to ever live!”

The finishing touches of Barkley, and Hagler, are amazing when you think of it. In the Barkley win Duran won a world title almost 22 years after having turned pro. Can you imagine, perhaps, a lightweight such as Ken Buchanan or Carlos Ortiz, or Laguna for that matter, moving up in weight to fight a Carlos Monzon? Perhaps Pryor, the Hawk, moving up and fighting Michael Spinks? How about Chavez Sr. fighting Roy Jones!

There is only one Duran. There will only ever be one Duran. At his very best he had an intuitive sense and ability to detect the weaknesses in his opponent and an intuitive, god-given understanding of the world of the Sweet Science, distance, space, and place, foot work and punch. When the occasion was right—and certainly through his long and illustrious run as a lightweight, and on those grand birthday fights, when this intuitive sense mixed with his great component of desire—Duran was that top five pound-for-pound best. 

The next evening we re-attended at Duran’s restaurant. A large “boxing dinner” was in place with promoters, sanctioning bodies representatives, etc. Our times were (our error) mixed up and there was a private function featuring the best of the best from various Central American countries, in the context of recently graduated Cadets of the Special Operation type. 

Upon arriving we were advised that we were not going to be allowed entry, given security reasons. Asked who we were, we responded “boxing guys” and “not to worry” we would re-attend later. As we turned to leave the Grand Champion Duran came out, said something in Spanish rather aggressively to the Military Guard at the front and smiled and waved us in. Some individuals were moved out of an area near the door and a table was moved forward and set up for us.

Still the pistol, the Champion Duran took the microphone, stepped on stage with his band and started that big Latin beat song. A giant four-foot in circumference round shrimp platter was placed on a large table at the side of the room for all to enjoy and Duran and band entertained for hours. DOORAN, DOORAN!

Later in the evening as our driver took us back to our hotel my memory was flashing to other exquisite moments such as Duran crushing Pipino Cuevas and on another birthday bash, beating the locomotive beast, former WBA Middleweight Title Champion Jorge Castro, at the time 101-5-2. Stunningly Duran accomplishes this win at the age of 46. In Castro he beat a fighter who just a few years earlier had defended his WBA Middleweight Title multiple times against very solid competition.

Our driver drops us off, at the Continental Hotel, right in the main hub of Panama City, laughs and states “Mr. Smeeeeet, you will of course be coming back soon I hope. What of the fight, my friend, in their prime, pound-for-pound, the Grand Champion Duran vs. Monzon?” Ahh that is a question for the ages, and now there’s a thought and I will remain silent and ponder: Two Champions, two men, in full, and the respect of silence.  I will savor that thought of such things as I will Duran’s place!  Memories like this…..Panama…..Dooran, Dooran!

Follow us on Twitter@boxing_com to continue the discussion

Roberto Duran vs Ken Buchanan.



Roberto Duran vs. Esteban De Jesus III



Sugar Ray Leonard vs Roberto Duran I



Roberto Duran Vs Davey Moore (Full Fight)



Marvin Hagler vs Roberto Duran



Roberto Duran vs Iran Barkley Full Fight



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  1. Mike Schmidt 07:27pm, 08/19/2013

    Thanks for the post Leigh- agree 100%-

  2. Leigh 12:00am, 08/17/2013

    A great fighter and a great man had the pleasure of meeting him last year.He had time for everyone a great sense of humour, play fighting with all the kids and generally being an all round legend, pure class .

  3. Mike Schmidt 07:21pm, 08/16/2013

    On the road Biker Mike so a little hard to get back at ya- but thanks - interesting on the Hagler vs Leonard fight- tough fight to score- Marv should have come out from the get go and gone at him full throttle- I think Ray got into his head on a great psyche job

  4. bikermike 11:10am, 08/16/2013

    MR SMEEET…..It is so good to read an article that is positive and informed….Thank you ...


    bikermike

  5. bikermike 11:08am, 08/16/2013

    I have to agree with some of the more informed posters…....than I will ever be….
    Roberto Duran looks good….his face and eyes are clear….he is at or about 160….pounds….IT shows he has met peace with himself…
    Most fighters of his caliber never find peace after the ring is behind them…

    I just hope nobody ever sells him another lion

  6. bikermike 11:04am, 08/16/2013

    Who could not admire Roberto Duran…???
    He fought to sell newspapers on his ‘SPOT’...in downtown Panama…he was less than twelve yrs old…
    ...later…..he claimed a stretch of beach…known as ROBERTOR’s
    Beach…same thing….he fought to make it his…..
    He once had a pet lion…who loved to be on the ‘BEACH’ with Roberto…...I tell you….Roberto Duran was never going to be confused with Richard Burton….but still Roberto had class…...
    tuffer than boiled whale shit….and meaner than one of my ex wife’s lawyers

  7. bikermike 10:39am, 08/16/2013

    I was ringside for leonard vs Hagler….leonard was obviously ‘roided up’.....leonard followed his plan…..stay clear(ring was about the size of an artillery range…and was only for 12 rounds…and Hagler had to weigh 155 at a certain date before the figtht
    leonard did not win….but he was awarded the decision….especially when leonard got wobbled and got Angelo Dundee to do the re wrap…giving the thin whiskered leonard another minute between round 7 and round 8

  8. Mike Schmidt 07:39am, 08/16/2013

    Cutman how goes it Sir. See you in September- gotta say Roberto looks to be about 165 right now - I think you would agree- back in great looking shape- shoulders on him like a cruiserweight!!! Can see where some of that power comes from- aside from technical and all those years of in the ring experience- adios Sir and have a great weekend- Bronson the Coyote/Shepherd dog and I are off to the deep woods shortly- see ya in a few weeks Carlos- say hello to Pops please

  9. Carlos Varela Jr. 07:23am, 08/16/2013

    Great food great , great atmosphere and the best of all you get Roberto to entertain you he is humble and down to earth really enjoy taking care of you, make you feel welcome, If you stand beside him you realize how great he was, how did he manage to go in the ring with Hearns, Moore, Barkley and Hagler, he was truly a lightweight what an amazing man you will not be disappointed, Duran Restaurant is a historic site to visit If you are in Panama city.

  10. Mike Schmidt 05:33am, 08/16/2013

    Sneak I am getting too old, been around the horn tooooo many times to be envious- MSG for Moore you say…..FUCK IT I AM JEALOUS!!!!! Now you really have me going with this Victor’s Café business- out with it lad- what’s the story!!!!! And right back at you-DOORAN DOORAN DOORAN

  11. Pete The Sneak 05:22am, 08/16/2013

    Schmiddy, thanks for taking us on another grand tour of Panama and giving us exclusive seats to Roberto’s place as well. It sounds like a truly stunning place and I’m not the least bit surprised to hear about Durans generosity and kindness to his fans/friends as my wife and I were recipients of that generosity at Victors Cafe in Manhattan one very special evening years ago…While Durans first fight with the great Ray Leonard was (for me) the epitome of his Roberto’s greatness, I will always be bias (since I was there live) as to his greatest victory being the dismantling of Davey Moore at MSG. I have never in my life been privy to such a love fest for a boxer (or anyone for that matter). 30 Years later, I still hear that incredible Garden crowd roaring through every Duran connect on Moore (and man, there were plenty) and when it was over, it was a jubilation of such magnitude never to be witnessed again (at least for me).When Duran was lifted up and the crowd went berserk with DOORAN, DOORAN, well, lets just say it was almost life changing. No one, and I mean no one wanted to leave the Garden that night. Needless to say, that will stay with me forever. Only boxing can produce that sort of special moment. Sorry Schmiddy, but you got me going here..LOL…Thanks again. As I usually end my posts with a ‘Peace,’ I just want to end it this time with just one word. DOORAN!

  12. Mike Schmidt 12:37am, 08/16/2013

    How good was the fighter in Leonard that Duran beat. Well, he was some kind of warrior - if you look at his opponents record from and including Benitez thru Hearns- ( Green etc ) it is a combined and stunning 240-7-1. DURAN IS THE ONLY MAN TO BEAT AN ABSOLUTELY PRIME LEONARD. And Leonard did not duck anybody. To comeback and beat Hagler after such a layoff- THAT IS THE GUY THAT LIGHTWEIGHT MOVING UP, DURAN, BEAT.

  13. Mike Schmidt 12:28am, 08/16/2013

    Champion Hearns was absolutely robbed in the rematch against Ray- to Champ Leonards credit he has publicly commented on occasion that Tommy won that fight. Your right Mike about the past fighters. In fact Leonard commented on this just last week at the Vegas Boxing Hall of Fame as did Larry Holmes last year- the difference then and now is ” we (Leonard, Tommy, Roberto, Marvin) fought each other- the best fought the best. Now the best guys don’t fight each other.” lot of cherry picking these days. There are the exceptions of course- guys like MARES WHO GOES OUT AND FIGHTS EVERYBODY- ANDRE WARD CHEWING HIS WAY THRU SUPER MIDDLE- THESE ARE THE GUYS THAT SHOULD BE GETTING THE MUCHO DINERO.

  14. bikermike 07:07pm, 08/15/2013

    Mister Smeet…........some more like this .....Please

  15. bikermike 06:44pm, 08/15/2013

    ...after Duran butt fkd leonard..
    Duran ...not a sophisticated gentleman of the ring (ever heard this one)//////.....balooned to two hundred and ten pounds @@!!!!!

    .......leonard never gave a rematch he didn’t like

    Hearns got his well deserved rematcn….after sixty years…..and even then Tommy got robbed of the decision !!!!!  Tell me I’m lie ’ n

  16. bikermike 06:35pm, 08/15/2013

    Hearns….at that time in his career…with those sparrow like legs…could make welter ...and still be six foot plus…and had a good set of punches….......when he faced the tasmanian devil….he did the only thing he could do….hit that little fukr so hard he’d fall down….

    ...nuff said

  17. bikermike 06:25pm, 08/15/2013

    I knew a lot about Duran before he met Buchanan…..and Duran was one of those NON OLYMPIC STYLE Fighters…..who had a huge advantage…

    When a lot of fighters would use their gloves ...Duran had both gloves…both shoulders….both elbows…and his very strategic use of his head….

    ....a lot of fighters ......and Buchanan was one of them….....couldn’t face that ‘tasmanian devil ’ kind of fighter…...

  18. bikermike 06:16pm, 08/15/2013

    another thing about Duran…..

    He lost some fights….and came back
    Today…meaning since the seventies…...somehow…undefeated…means more than it really does.  I could make a comeback tomorrow….so long as I only was matched with blind old ladies with only one leg workiing….....and a back up plan to poison her water bottle…

    get the picture

  19. bikermike 06:07pm, 08/15/2013

    anybody ever see that Estaban de Jesus trilogy….?????

    Duran is plenty tough…..so was de Jesus…..God rest his soul

  20. bikermike 06:02pm, 08/15/2013

    MISTER SMEET…

    I remember an article about Gleason ...coming down to see the prospects…..Gleason was a bit of a gambler on fights…and he liked to keep in touch.

    ...anyway…..then Cassius Clay came into their group ....and blatently asked them to put ‘something into the hat’...

    Gleason refused….
    He asked ..after Clay left…...anybody know what Lou Duva is doing ????

  21. bikermike 05:55pm, 08/15/2013

    MISTER SMEET….....Loved it…...I’m looking forward to your next…..

  22. bikermike 05:53pm, 08/15/2013

    Eric…..I’ll meet you half way…

    Duran’s anal sex rape of leonard was a boxing shake up…no doubt about it…

    ..but let me put it to you that Duran’s total face fuk of Iran ..‘THE BLADE” Barkley….when the boxing community was about to dismiss Roberto Duran…..

    Duran over leonard…..priceless
    Duran over Barkey…....as thrilling as George Foreman over Morhr’‘

    Duran is one of the GREATEST FIGHTERS OF ALL TIME

    Tell me I’m lie ‘n

  23. Mike Schmidt 05:50pm, 08/15/2013

    Biker one of the great lines from Jackie Gleason who of course was a huge fight fan and regular at Toots when in New York. Ray Leonard was sitting ringside with Jackie for Roberto’s fight against Dejesus in Vegas- Leonard commented that he would one day be fighting Duran to which Gleason responded “Son, don’t ever think about doing that. This man will kill you!” Of course the legendary Gleason who also spotted a mean cue ( playing Fats in the movies) was a very very big Duran fan. “Live from Miami Beach….it’s the Jackie Gleason show….” dem was the days!!!!

  24. bikermike 05:43pm, 08/15/2013

    See…..Roberto Duran was a Panamanian version of Manny Pacquaio…...

    It was said that Duran was almost twenty , before he ate his first steak of beef !!!
    Never a polished interview…...Duran had to make his following due to his ring performances….......and that he got a shot at the great and wonderful oz…......ray leonard….......showed that he had merit…..and that the great and powerful oz….leonard…was not well informed about his opponent.

    ...leonard ...who was Welterweight Champion .....took on Duran…who was a Lightweight Champion…...and leonard got his ass handed to him…....after it was fukd and kicked and squirted upon….with great frequency and accuracy

  25. Mike Schmidt 05:38pm, 08/15/2013

    Terrible decision in Castro’s backyard of Argentina Kid- they did a turn around rematch in Panama and Duran put on an amazing show for a rematch victory over the former WBA middle Champ who beat some very tough guys including a knockout, in a grueling fight, over Mr. Bob Arums sidekick, bodyguard, security man- sorry lad down in Vegas but I just had to mention it- don’t hold it against me DH- your still Royalteeee!!!!

  26. Mike Schmidt 05:34pm, 08/15/2013

    All kidding aside Irish and back to Eric’s comments- when you think of some of the guys Tommy starched early it is really amazing; Cuevas of course, Gazo in one, Geraldo in one, Roldan in four, Maynard in one, and one of his best against a top rater, Shuler in one.  Which adds to another point- Marvin Hagler has got to be on anybody’s top ten list of world class whiskers- the shot he took from Tommy and shots he took from Mugabi- unbelievable-Astonishing one punch power is what Tommy had in that right hand- the only other guy that immediately comes to mind with one punch lights out power thru those lovely years was the great Julian Jackson ( but Julian had it from both sides !!!)- who will be working his sons corner this weekend in the Virgin Islands- wish I was there with ya Sampson buddy- have a great show!!!

  27. bikermike 05:33pm, 08/15/2013

    Mr Smeet !!!

    a lot of folks were starting to think less about Roberto Duran…after his second ‘match’ with leonard…..and then his loss to Hagler….

    Still…..his wins over Moore….he couldn’t be dismissed…..and when he beat the Blade….when Iran Barkley was ‘THE BLADE’...

    I gotta tell you…..Duran was one of a kind….he lost some…but he won a lot…
    and a lot of his defeated opponents were good fighters…

  28. kid vegas 05:30pm, 08/15/2013


    Didn’t Jorge Castro beat Duran?

  29. mike schmidt 05:02pm, 08/15/2013

    Fantastic Irish- I like it- Castro in a rubber match- piss off all the wild bulls of the pampas’s down Luna Park way ( did I get that plural correct fearless Editor) and then on to a shot at Sergio- with Sergio’s bad knee and reduced mobility The Grand Champion should be able to dig in those body shots- then again Sergio may want to wait a whole year thus depriving Duran of another title shot.- The other possibility would be having the Problem Boner move up to a catch weight- given what little damage the Boner did to Pauli if Roberto can sink a few Buchanan like shots in then we shall truly have a problem Boner.

  30. Irish Frankie Crawford Beat Saijo aka Gimpel 04:10pm, 08/15/2013

    Mike Schmidt-Thanks for taking us to Panama again….great report and a great menu….I’m betting washed down nicely with frosty, cold Soberanas, la cervesa mas fina….or is that Corona…anyhooo… it’s being reported that Roberto has a fight lined up with Castro in Argentina.

  31. mike schmidt 02:15pm, 08/15/2013

    Hell of a right hand and how many A quality fighters misjudged the distance on that arrow straight Hearns shot- whole lot of guys stroked- Roberto of course at that stage, 77-5, 82 fights in the till , 33 years of age fighting a huge Welter in his prime at 26- yep you got it Eric- tough order at this stage. To the Champion Duran’s credit there were absolutely no excuses- he got caught by “that right hand” and he fessed up on it like the tough guy he was/is. Remarkably, and styles play in as always of course- Barkley starched Hearns, Duran does Barkley etc etc, One thing I would add relevant to what is coming up in October country- Duran came back from that HUGE KO LOSS in a big way- for all those Manny doubters that are saying nobody ever recovers from a huge face first out cold knockout- yes tough to do, but ain’t true as shown in Duran’s case. Adios Sir.

  32. Eric 01:44pm, 08/15/2013

    Duran’s victory over Leonard had to be the finest moment in his career IMO. I think the low point was his brutal kayo loss to Tommy Hearns, and not the infamous “No Mas” rematch with Leonard. Most would disagree claiming at least Duran went out on his shield against Hearns, but nobody had ever handled Duran like that before or afterwards. Brutal kayo. Duran even looked intimidated at the start of the fight and had probably lost before the first punch was even thrown. Greatest lightweight of all time, could have been a damn good welterweight, but lost a great deal of “hunger” after his epic victory over Leonard.

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