Helping Boxers Help Themselves

By Ted Sares on May 24, 2013
Helping Boxers Help Themselves
The boxing business has never been known for its infrastructure of morality and ethics.

Heavyweight boxing champion Joe Louis, arguably one of the greatest heavyweights of all time, was hounded to the grave for back taxes…

“We need more real world education and life skills programs that are ongoing, accessible and practical. Include parents and wives in any programs and processes.”—Jack Bechta

“Not that boxers are stupid, but most aren’t educated beyond high school, haven’t studied business and have spent most of their lives in a gym trying to be the best fighters they can be. Help from advisers you can trust is crucial.”—David Haye

“Boxing and football, these are working class sports, and education is key.”—Frank Warren.

“The biggest crime in boxing has always been that nobody gives a fighter a thought. It’s all greed and how much they can squeeze out of the fighter.”—Ray Arcel

Years ago, there was a rumor floating around Atlantic City that a Mike Tyson title fight victim had taken a portion of his earnings and had them invested in a deferred fixed annuity. Reportedly, once retired, the boxer annuitized and began receiving $30,000 annually ($ 2,500 monthly). Despite some solid research, I was never able to verify this rumor. However, given the kind of purses Mike’s victims were getting during title fights, it is hypothetically possible that such an investment could have been made and could have yielded that type of yearly “guarantee.” Yet, given the lack of financial acumen of most boxers at that time, the chances of this having happened were improbable. The fact is, most people—let alone professional athletes—would not have had the wisdom and foresight to make such a long-range investment.

However, the landscape may be changing for the better. As the late Emanuel Steward told BBC Sports writer Ronald McIntosh, “Modern-day fighters are businessmen first, and prize-fighters second.” (“From Boxer to Bankrupt” dated June 29, 2009). This perhaps suggests that boxers are becoming smarter when it comes to their finances. But as McIntosh asks, is there more that boxing and boxers could be doing to ensure that fewer and fewer fighters fall on hard times?

A Financial Cautionary Tale

The historical boxing landscape is littered with great fighters who got knocked out financially. The great Sam Langford ended up broke and so did Sugar Ray Robinson. Heavyweight boxing champion Joe Louis, arguably one of the greatest heavyweights of all time, was hounded to the grave for back taxes. Hall-of-Famer Ike Williams ended up broke. Mike Tyson’s financial woes are legendary and so are his nemesis’s Evander Holyfield’s; their problems have been discussed and written about ad nauseum. Add Iran Barkley, Rocky Lockridge, and Riddick Bowe to the mix and you have far more than a cautionary tale. For a variety of reasons, each was at the top but ended up losing everything. Some came back after going broke, some barely got by, and some ended up with nothing.

The Inflection Point

When a boxer begins to have success (defined here as no longer needing his day job), that’s precisely the time he needs to learn about the pitfalls associated with handling his earnings, but holding a fighter’s attention is far easier said than done.

Many rising pugilists see themselves on a path to more and bigger purses and tend to live in the financial moment. Indeed, the hope of making big money is often the catalyst for fighting in the first place. But many (if not most) boxers come from socioeconomic backgrounds where it is difficult to fully appreciate money in large amounts; it’s usually more than they have ever imagined spending or managing in their lives, and they must realize that holding onto that money is crucial once they stop fighting.

Some points for boxers, managers and advisors to think about

“Consultants who take their time to educate, communicate and have a way of helping players control spending get an A+ in my book but they are few and far between.”—Jack Bechta

“I have a fighter who went through this just the other day until we talked it through. He gets that check, thinks, ‘It’s time to buy a house,’ and goes to a mortgage broker. He never bought anything worth so much before, and he asks, ‘How much house can I afford?’ the broker says, ‘Well, our mortgage approval is based on three times your annual salary”’and the boxer does some quick math and goes, ‘Wow! I can afford a $3.5 million home!’”—Forum poster named demigawd who did an interesting four-part series on “Why do boxers go broke?”

“[Mark] Breland is one of the few fighters who knew when to quit and who got the most out of a successful boxing career. He has his wits about him, no worries about money and is still on the threshold of new horizons… He was well-guided by some fine fight people, such as Shelly Finkel and the late Ray Arcel. Compare Breland’s after-fight life with those of Willie Pep and Sandy Sadler and you get a totally different picture.”—NY Daily News dated September 27, 2009

Talking Points

An eye-opening number of professional football and basketball players have financial problems after they retire, notwithstanding efforts by the NFL, the NBA, the unions, and their personal advisors. Surely there are lessons to be learned in this for today’s boxers who have the added challenge of participating with neither a league nor a union.

In a May 30, 2012 article titled, “Ten Reasons NFL Players go Broke,” author, former financial planner, and now agent Jack Bechta details some reasons that could apply to boxers. See I turned his list around within a more positive context and added some points of my own, keeping in mind that in today’s financial world of low inflation and low yield, getting a decent return on investments is difficult for anyone—much less boxers..

In this regard, it is acknowledged that some of the following points might not be the most compelling attention grabbers, but that’s hardly a valid reason for not laying them out there. These are things that need to be discussed and written about.  The easiest, albeit hackneyed,  thing is to write about the travails of the many boxers who have gone broke, but maybe it’s time to put the stress on how they can avoid going broke.

1. First and foremost, seek sound financial counsel: A one-hour meeting with someone from a leading brokerage firm (Fidelity Investments, as just one of many examples) costs nothing but can be the best hour you spend in years. Boxers, unlike other professional athletes, have a smaller “peak earnings window” where they earn the majority of their money. That window is usually only about four or five years. In short, they are “front earners,” which makes it a difficult task for many bankers, advisors, brokers, realtors, and others to really know how to deal with, much less structure, the financial affairs of a boxer. Boxing is only the “pot of gold at the end of the rainbow” for a short time for many top level contenders.

2. Pay your own bills: Keep track of what you spend and know how to keep a checkbook balance. Above all, ensure that your taxes are paid on a timely basis. In this connection, learn the difference between gross and net, as fighters see only a percentage of the money they earn after everyone else takes their cut—including the taxman.

3. Avoid bad Investments: Everyone has heard about a “Can’t Go Wrong” deal, but if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is. Avoid these at all costs. The boxing world is full of people who have been right once in a row. Understand that only a small percentage of private investment vehicles (illiquid investments) actually work and when they don’t work, you usually lose all of your money, not just some of your money. Any broker or financial advisor should be able to easily explain the difference between a public investment vehicle and a private one

4. As soon as many new professional athletes sign their names on the dotted line, they are surrounded by “street smart” vultures disguised as investors, financial advisors, and even friends and family members who tell them how to “protect” and spend their new and unanticipated “fortunes.” In boxing, the referees tell boxers to “protect themselves at all times” in the ring, but few people protect them outside the ring.

5. Avoid “YES” men: Where there is potential fame and fortune, there are plenty of smiling “friends “who generally evolve into an entourage (and will vanish as soon as the money vanishes). Find a “NO Man.”. The people who really truly care about you do not want you squandering your money, do not want anything from you, and do not want to be a part of your entourage. Therefore, keep THEM around and keep the rest to an absolute minimum. Trust of those around you is crucial.

6. Find and try to emulate positive and realistic role models. Understand that there are only so many Floyd Mayweathers and unless you have the potential to be like Floyd or like an Adrien Broner or Gennady Golovkin, you might be better off living like a lower tier contender. In this connection, frivolous spending on fancy and/or overly pretentious jewelry and expensive vehicles can be a pathway to trouble. This doesn’t mean you avoid enjoying material things or having fun, but living within your means is a prudent course of action. Tiger Woods may be on course (no pun intended) to become the first billionaire athlete yet you could bump into him on the street and never realize who he was or that he was so wealthy.

7. Young boxers would do well to look at how former fighters like Dave “Boy” Green, Dave Tiberi, Mark Breland, Skipper Kelp, John Ruiz, Dana Rosenblatt, John Scully, and David Haye (to name a few)  managed and/or manage their affairs.

8. Avoid promoters who have a reputation for shortchanging fighters.

9. Trainers and managers can have a major impact on their charges and can create an environment of frugality and of preaching good habits.

10. Ex-spouses and alimony can be very expensive. So can children and child support.

11. Recognize that being a professional means just that, and that fiscal discipline can be a part of being a successful professional boxer.

12. If you fight often in the State of California, check to see if you might be accruing credits for that state’s pension fund for boxers. For starters, check out:

13. Acknowledge that the business of boxing has never been known for its infrastructure of morality and ethics, though much of the criticism has been naive or self-indulgent.

14. Maintain close links with your former day job. An injury can end a career in a heartbeat, so have something to fall back on. Irish Micky Ward maintained his day job on a road-paving crew while he was making his comeback. 

15. Preparing for a second career is a very wise move as Dana Rosenblatt atypically proved when he moved into a financial position with a large firm upon retiring from boxing. His transition went smoothly because Dana, who put a premium on career management and education, looked at boxing as just one phase of his entire working life.

As Larry Holmes, who virtually owns his hometown of Easton, Pennsylvania, once said, “How would I like to be remembered? As a fighter who saved his money.”

Disclaimer: This article is not intended as tax, legal or financial advice and should not be treated as such. In that regard, the author accepts no liability for the use of the same. Each individual’s situation is different. You should contact your legal, financial, or tax professional to discuss your personal situation.

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  1. Ted 05:19am, 05/31/2013”

  2. Ted 05:19pm, 05/29/2013

    I hope this comes to fruition. Time will tell.

  3. Ted 05:08pm, 05/29/2013

    I have some serious doubts about this cat. He always estimates way too low. It might be a gimmick. But he has been doing it for some time now.

  4. Ted 05:04pm, 05/29/2013

    A friend of mine on Facebook just posted this on my page:

    ‘In shock just read Micheal Spinks the man who made 12 million for 90 seconds has a total net worth left under $100.000 he once owned more than 20 cars which he had to sell WTF”

    I will endeavor to verify this as I cannot believe it can be so.

  5. Clarence George 07:40am, 05/29/2013

    Yes, indeed (though I prefer the Dorothy Parker version).

  6. Ted 07:35am, 05/29/2013

    Yes, I saw that one. Another example of discussing fighters who went broke instead of talking about how they might avoid going broke.

    The sharks are surrounding unsuspecting boxers like they have been in the ring with GGG——lots of blood—-it just saddens me, but it’s not just boxers. I can’t even convince family members to do the safe thing with their money. You can lead a horse to water, but you can’t make it drink.

  7. Clarence George 07:25am, 05/29/2013

    Yo, Ted:  A coincidence, no doubt:

  8. Ted 06:43am, 05/28/2013

    Thanks Bill. I appreciate that.

  9. dollarbond 06:25am, 05/28/2013

    You continue to be a trailblazer on this issue Ted. Kudos!

  10. The Thresher 04:52am, 05/28/2013

    Kid, just saw your post. Answer: nothing. In fact, every year he quits in “despair,” but is begged to return. The entire drama is orchestraed and his son is the one who leads the ” cry” for his return. He is disgusting and is bile-inducing. He represents all that is wrong with boxing. Hope that does it.


  11. Ted 04:37am, 05/28/2013

    Thanks Mike for adding that to the thread. I did not know about it.

  12. Mike Casey 01:01am, 05/28/2013

    Barry McGuigan has done some good work in this field, Ted:

  13. kid vegas 05:10pm, 05/27/2013

    I just read that Sulaiman article. What has he done to earn that kind of ego?

  14. The Thresher 01:45pm, 05/27/2013

    I think if you take the time to read this, you will get a sense of my frustration.

  15. Ted 12:48pm, 05/27/2013

    My pleasure Brother John

  16. john coiley 12:45pm, 05/27/2013

    it’s in my mind bank now, Ted…so when, not if, but when opportunity arises I can/will propose all that you and others suggest…thank you

  17. Clarence George 11:56am, 05/27/2013

    Ooh, I’m impressed…and hungry.  Forgot you were married to a Hungarian.

    I’ve never had beer bread, but my mother makes very good lángos.ángos_frying.jpg

  18. Ted 11:12am, 05/27/2013

    Ah, And Sorkenyhenyer Palca, lecsó, palinka and Attila Gere Cabernet

  19. Clarence George 11:05am, 05/27/2013

    Ah, I understand.  Yes, for that topic at least three or four days, fortifying ourselves with gulyás and Egri Bikavér.

  20. Ted 10:32am, 05/27/2013

    three or four days to discuss the evils of Hungarian women.

  21. Clarence George 08:33am, 05/27/2013

    Three or four days?  What are you, a sailor on leave?

    I think there’ll be a dinner in June, then none until September.  Maybe the Mystery Lady will be there.  Anyway, I’d be delighted to get together with you.  But if you’re looking for goulash…hard to find outside of my mother’s kitchen—nothing left of Little Hungary.

    All women are seductive, conniving, and evil, which is why we love them.  But, yes, the Hungarian variety is particularly…feisty.

  22. Ted 07:48am, 05/27/2013

    Clarence George, I plan to attend their next Banquet. I think it’s in September but I’m not sure. Perhaps, we can meet for some Goulash and discuss the seductive, evil and conniving ways of Hungarian women. Please set aside some time—maybe 3 or 4 days.

  23. Ted 07:39am, 05/27/2013

    John, by making the fans, the public, the boxers, the commissions and everybody else connected to boxing aware of these things. To my knowledge, Teddy Atlas is one of the few public figure who seems willing to engage the subject. Lampley also. When was the last time you heard Al Bernstein discuss this subject? Or Max?  This is why I wrote this article.

    Maybe Mark Breland will resonate with it and then someone will resonate with Mark. Or maybe one of the Ring organizations might publish it on their site. Already, it is making some rounds on the west coast. I don’t care one iota if I get any credit for it. Just so it gets out there and then maybe someone more knowledgable than me can write a better one. All I really want to do is make people aware of the fact that boxers do not need to go broke.

    My thrust as a writer over the years has been to focus on reform. This is a bit of a departure but still within the universe of that subject.

  24. john coiley 07:14am, 05/27/2013

    and how do we “writers help boxers?”

  25. Clarence George 06:48am, 05/27/2013

    It’s why I haven’t asked Bob Duffy to identify the Lady in Black.  I can only imagine the withering look I’d get, given that I asked him for a membership card, and was ignored.  Ignored!  By the way, the yearly dues have increased from $25.00 to $30.00, but still well worth it…even without the card.

  26. Ted 06:35am, 05/27/2013

    Ah, that explains why I didnt get mine.

    I think the Commissions could also step in and conduct some basic financial education courses and make them mandatory for every fighter who engages in over a certain number of bouts.Whatever is done, it must follow an algorithm across the board. And the commissions could start the ball rolling on this.

  27. Clarence George 06:25am, 05/27/2013

    Yeah, I’d like to see the sport’s truly wealthy do more.  Floyd Mayweather Jr. paid Joe Frazier’s funeral expenses, which was certainly commendable, but how ‘bout a hefty but affordable check to one or more of the boxing associations?  Ring 8’s operating on a shoestring budget—they don’t even issue membership cards anymore!

  28. Ted 05:39am, 05/27/2013

    Yes Clarence, even Sandy and Willie. And Emile as well. Its horrible. But it’s time to turn this around. It’s time for the writers out there to do their part and help the boxers in addition to making money off them. The BWAA could really help here. The Veteran Ring Organizations are doing their part, but others need to step up in the shameful absence of promoters.

  29. Clarence George 03:41am, 05/27/2013

    Bud Abbott and Lou Costello had the same problems with the IRS as did Joe Louis.  Despite their tremendous contributions to the war effort, the government was merciless in going after them for back taxes and penalties.  Given that he lived far longer, Abbott had a particularly hard time of it, finally reduced to asking his fans to each send him a dollar.  It didn’t amount to much, sad to say. 

    Anyway…boxers need to take Ted’s advice to heart, and the fans should be as generous as their means allow with the handful of associations that come to the rescue of former fighters down on their luck.  God knows what would have happened to a dazed and lost Sandy Saddler, for example, if the police hadn’t found his Ring 8 membership card on his person—the only thing left to him by the thugs who beat him up and cut off his pants.

  30. Michael Hegan 07:09pm, 05/26/2013

    What I’m proposing is a drug free ...big rig driver’s test…..
    AND…POLICE to inforce dry land ...and traffic

  31. Michael Hegan 07:04pm, 05/26/2013

    the Krusher…..all you gotta do to invest in the vehicles you want…is to show up with the money…..

    I’m guessing you didn’t have the money

  32. Michael Hegan 07:00pm, 05/26/2013

    Gerry Cooney has some support effort as well   set up some sort of ‘trust

    assistance for retraining ......and like that ????  for those who can no longer compete…

  33. Michael Hegan 06:53pm, 05/26/2013

    Ted ...the Bull…
    My eyes are on the list of cataract surgery….both my hips have been replaced…first hip was done twice…next one was better than the first one…..shoulders are next.

    I am bound to ride the iron lung this summer.

    Many managers are ‘in’ on the cutting up of the cash…

    Still ....when I see bullshit….I say so…....

    Thank you TED…for giving us some facts

  34. Michael Hegan 06:43pm, 05/26/2013

    I have had more than half a dozen divorces…..and this information and advice holds true for all of us…

    Mind you….I never had a multi million dollare purse…nor win at the card table…nor a lottery win.

    If a guy puts away .....say 10% of his pay per week…..,,,,from his early twenties
    he’ll retire comfortably

  35. Michael Hegan 06:39pm, 05/26/2013

    the message of this article doesn’t JUST apply to professional Boxers…..getdafuknpicture

  36. Michael Hegan 06:08pm, 05/26/2013

    some of this misery falls upon the banking industry…...who would put forward a lot of funds, on a loan….to an athlete who is ‘in the chips’...until he gets injured or defeated….

    Still….had these folks got some advice like TED’s article… wouldn’t be so vulgar… leave one of the greatest HW Champions of Boxing….to die broke….sleeping on a cot above a gym that wasn’t making enough money to keep the lights and heat on…..(Joe Frazier)

  37. Michael Hegan 06:03pm, 05/26/2013

    the split of the purse has always been a subject of discussion…....

    Joe Louis’s purses were large….but Joe didn’t get but a fraction of those purses…..gross vs net…...Yet the tax nazis held that man accountable for the entire amount…

    Ray Arcel said it best….and he would know

  38. Ted 05:53pm, 05/26/2013

    God damn eyes are going. That’s all for tonight.

    Some day when I retire from writing, I’ll discuss why my eyes are so bad and how they got that way. An interesting story.

  39. Ted 05:51pm, 05/26/2013

    The other part of this is career management and there are people out there who can help. The key here is to keep boxing in perspective and unless you are able to earn mega bucks, you need to view boxing as just one phase of your working life—and maybe the biggest phase even if it is early in your career. My sense is that many good trainers probably don’t earn as much as when they were very good boxers, but it’s just a sense. Hopefully those trainers have something in the bank for later on.

  40. Ted 05:47pm, 05/26/2013

    Hmm, I reckon I’ll stay clear of any issues involving the IRS.

  41. Ted 05:45pm, 05/26/2013

    And we only know about the tip of the iceberg—the famous ones, but how about those who were shooting stars and then just did a nova and/ or disappeared?  I know so many and it’s tragic, but it’s not limited to just boxers. I think music is an industry where you might find similar issues. Just surmising but the similarities are stark in my opinion.,

    You know, a boxer might gross 300,000 from two big fights and then, after the pie has been cut up, he might net between 250,000 and 300,000 if he’s lucky. But one can do some pretty smart things—long range things—with a good chunk of that, say $150,000.

  42. Michael Hegan 05:43pm, 05/26/2013

    a pox on the USA tax nazis….
    Joe Louis raised MILLIONS of Dollars for the Bond issues..for the WWII war effort….but still got nailed for back taxes…..

    You folks wonder why USA citizens switch sides and bomb North American sites…....???
    USA is their own worst enemy at home and abroad

  43. Michael Hegan 05:37pm, 05/26/2013

    John Coiley…..
    Tennis is the closest ‘big money’ Sport ...and they don’t have these problems…
    A lot is because you don’t get many STAR TENNIS PLAYERS…from poverty

  44. Michael Hegan 05:34pm, 05/26/2013

    Ted’s points don’t apply only to Boxers
    Read this article….and read it again.

    Ted is an informed financial planner….and is not looking to build his book;

    The Bull ...and I ..have seen so much sorrow when a fighter can no longer pay his bills

    To me….the Joe Frazier…Thomas Hearns…Iran Barkley…et al situations are heartbreaking

  45. Michael Hegan 05:28pm, 05/26/2013

    the Joe Louis story shows just how ruthless the tax people are..

    Taxes are a major factor…..

    leonard made the decision…at a young age…to invest ....
    so did Larry Holmes among others

    Max Schmelling…..earned much less than did Joe Louis…..but Schmelling retired a millionaire
    Boxing can make a lotta money for the gifted few… all other sports…but .....that doesn’t assure wealth…
    for the meat and potatoes of the sport

    Ted…..great article….

  46. Ted 05:27pm, 05/26/2013

    If only he had talked to me or someone like me first. I get a lot of people who come to me for investment advice but I am extremely careful about raising unrealistic expectations. The other thing I have found is as soon as I give my advice, almost 95% of the advisees say something to the effect, “yeah, but so and so says thus and so…” As soon as I hear that I say goodby. Like I said in the article, I know a lot of people who have been right once in a row when it comes to money ideas.

    And Michael, you are bang on. It’s one thing to make money; it’s quite another to manage it.

  47. Michael Hegan 05:20pm, 05/26/2013

    there was a ‘tree cutter’ who won seventeen million dollars in the lottery from NORTHERN MANITOBA…CANADA

    In seven years…...he managed to piss it all away….
    He managed to hang on for seven years…and he went through it all

    HE hung himself…

    Money management is different from making money

  48. Ted 01:42pm, 05/26/2013

    Many thanks B-Red.

  49. B Red 01:40pm, 05/26/2013

    Great Read Ted, One of your best articles ever.

  50. Ted 12:27pm, 05/26/2013

    Kid, If I knew the answer to that one, I’d be unique. That’s the key. The answer probably involves the boxer’s relationship with his trainer and/or manager. They are likely the ones who can head him in the right direction, but I just don’t know the answer.

  51. Ted 12:17pm, 05/26/2013

    John, Mark has a lot of people in his corner.

  52. kid vegas 11:23am, 05/26/2013

    Welcome from Henderson, Nevada and Lake Las Vegas. After re-reading this article, I have at least one question. How do you get the boxer to go to the broker or planner? That seems to me to be the key point in getting help for these men.

  53. Ted 08:19am, 05/26/2013

    What Mark is doing, among many other things, is to get medical people to check on boxers during the early part of their careers to ensure that when they leave boxing, they won’t be damaged neurologically. He is asking for doctors and nurses to volunteer their help in this endeavor.  He is walking the walk where most everyone else seems to be talking the talk.

  54. john coiley 08:09am, 05/26/2013

    the foundation Mark Breland proposes is THE proverbial staggerless-step in the right direction, yes?

  55. Ted 05:57am, 05/26/2013

    Thanks, Michael. I think Holmes said both of those things.

  56. Ted 05:56am, 05/26/2013

    Mike Silver, this is exactly what Mark Breland is working on. Thanks for your prop.

  57. Ted 05:55am, 05/26/2013

    Giorgio, I do remember Remy from Geneva. Wow, I would never have thought that he would do that. Splendid work.

    Thanks Paisano.

  58. Ted 05:53am, 05/26/2013

    Thanks Mohummad. Keep the issue going.

  59. Mohummad Humza Elahi 02:20am, 05/26/2013

    Very good article, I wrote something similar over a shorter length for boxingnews24 called “The 13th Round” a couple of weeks back.  I don’t think this issue is highlighted enough, but thankfully, I think the awareness from cautionary tales will increase and that can only be a good thing.  For those interested

  60. Giorgio Corsi 12:50am, 05/26/2013

    Ted, another master piece of writing.
    You might remember Remy Siegrist, he has started a few years ago an activity to coach soccer players before retirement, to avoid they end up wasting their money when still in activity.
    Good success and particularly good results.
    Keep writing such good articles

  61. Mike Silver 08:11pm, 05/25/2013

    It’s not just that boxers wind up broke—-they also wind up broke physically with neurological damage which only worsens their post boxing scenario. The state boxing commissions should require every boxer who applies for a pro license to attend a seminar explaining the points of this fine article.

  62. Michael Hegan 05:51pm, 05/25/2013

    This is a very ..very important and informed article.
    Ted…this is just the kind of thing EVERY Boxer should become familiar with….Great job !!

    I always thought Larry Holmes responded to the question…‘How do you want to be remembered ?’............He said , ’ I want to be remembered as the oldest living Heavyweight Champion of the World !!’

    Another one out of the park for THE BULL

  63. Ted 04:00pm, 05/25/2013

    Eric, I understand where you are coming from, but my article was not intended to seek pity for those who blow thousands, if not millions of dollars.The intent was and is to show how this can be prevented. But I do get your point and I too have little sympathy for someone who has 11 children from multiple wives and also a mansion as big as a football field.

  64. Eric 01:55pm, 05/25/2013

    Boxing is a very rough business, but most of the remarkable men that practice it are tough enough to handle it. It is the blood sucking promoters, managers, trainers, accountants, and lawyers who take advantage of their lack of business sense. Many of these guys can’t balance a checkbook, and I don’t mean that as a slight but as a matter of fact statement. But for someone like Antuofermo to whine about ONLY receiving 75-grand for 45 minutes of work doesn’t gain my sympathy when many of his fans probably didn’t earn that much in 3 years back in 1979. ALL ATHLETES are grotesquely OVERPAID, sure a lot of club fighters make crappy money but they go into this brutal profession knowing that. If the average Joe squanders his or her money, who picks up the tab? So why should boxers be any different? Sure, I hope karma has something in store for all the predatory leeches who are involved in taking advantage of these boxers, but aren’t we all taken advantage of sometime or another. Most of us aren’t provided a safety net just as people like Joe Louis weren’t, but most of us will never be lucky enough to at least enjoy the lifestyle someone like Louis enjoyed for many years. Sorry, but as much as I admire the courage of anyone who enters the ring, it is kind of hard for me to feel sorry for someone who blows thousands, if not millions of dollars.

  65. Ted 12:10pm, 05/25/2013

    This link will take you to the Mark Breland Foundation

  66. Ted 11:45am, 05/25/2013

    Krush, I read Barrons every Saturday. The headlines on this week’s edition is “The Top 50 Annuities.” I’ll leave it at that, but I will add that Barrons is the best 5 dollar value you might find.

    I have not read the article yet, but I can’t wait to tear into it. Maybe after Froch - Kessleer

  67. The Krusher 09:27am, 05/25/2013

    I recently tried to get an annuity and had some obstacles cuz many of the insurance outfits don’t sell them anymore. I did get one finally but if I were a boxer what could I do about this? The idea of making this a list of commandments is a super one.

  68. Ted 08:33am, 05/25/2013

    Thanks Irish, that would be a great idea. At the least, to make these rising stars cautious and cafeful about who wants to “help” them.

  69. Irish Frankie Crawford Beat Saijo aka Gimpel 08:24am, 05/25/2013

    Ted Sares-Simply great….at the least…I believe that the 15 points could be distilled down to “Ten Commandments”....published in pamphlet form…and placed into the hands of every professional fighter… as part of a continued education requirement.

  70. Ted 07:05am, 05/25/2013

    Here is a quote from Vito Antuofermo: “For Hagler I made $150,000. But after taxes and expenses do you know I ended up with only $75,000 for fighting someone like Marvin Hagler?”

    Courtesy of Charlie Norkus Junior.

    Actually, 50% is not all that bad. Many end up with less.

  71. john coiley 07:04am, 05/25/2013

    thank you, Ted, for your continued support of the pugs that were and are.

  72. Ted 06:55am, 05/25/2013

    John, that is a major part of it. Boxers are unique in that respect and unless they have some financial education, they must depend on themselves for getting started. That’s one of the reasons I did this piece; namely. to provide a reference document for taking the first steps. Even if it means they refrain from buying fancy jewelery, I will have made some of the sand stick against the wall. Anything is better than nothing in this respect.

    I also wish a few other writers would tackle this issue because then we might get a snowball impact.

  73. john coiley 01:46am, 05/25/2013

    I think because it is such an individual endeavor, despite having trainers and managers for encouragement and support, the fighter knows it’s just him and the other guy in the ring, so maybe that is transposed to be in everyday life’s challenges.

  74. Tex Hassler 09:42pm, 05/24/2013

    Most young men cannot handle large amount of money. Most boxers are not prepared for life after boxing. When the money is coming in they think it will last forever but only taxes are forever. It is very sad to know that Joe Louis ended broke but it is true. Ray Arcel knew boxing and boxers. He looked after the fighter he trained but we are short on men like Ray Arcel today. These are some great suggestion on handling money. I hope some fighter will take it to heart. Great article!

  75. Ted 08:26pm, 05/24/2013

    Thanks Charley. Mark is a great example of how to protect your ring earnings and how to manage your career. Guy Casele is another that I could have mentioned.

  76. cnorkusjr 07:54pm, 05/24/2013

    Mark Breland founded an organization for boxers who fall in the exact theme of this article. Thank You Ted for another fine piece.
    Mark’s assn:

  77. Ted 06:52pm, 05/24/2013

    Thanks Vegas friends

  78. kid vegas 06:45pm, 05/24/2013

    This should be mandatory reading for every rising boxing star. It should be their financial manifesto. Great job, Ted.

  79. The Krusher 06:34pm, 05/24/2013

    There is some advice in there that I’ll take.

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