Superb piece on Hamed

Go down

Superb piece on Hamed Empty Superb piece on Hamed

Post by Haito on Sat 24 Nov 2012, 4:10 pm

Thought id post this very interesting piece i found on Naseem Hamed. Even as a huge Naz Fan i wasnt aware of some of the issues bought up in this.

Naseem Hamed: Why did the ‘Prince’ Retire?
Boxing article posted on March 11th, 2009 | Post Comment

By Matthew Thomas Potter: For the first time in a decade long career, Naseem Hamed left the ring to a mixture of muted boos and polite applause. A short time later, one of Britain’s greatest ever boxers, at the age of 28, would announce his retirement. Hamed, looking out of shape after a long period of inactivity, had just won a wide points decision victory over an unheralded Spaniard, Manuel Calvo, for the lightly regarded IBO Featherweight title.

It had all begun twenty one years earlier, when at the age of seven, a young Naseem entered Brendan Ingle’s gym, in the steel city of Sheffield, England. Hamed was a polite and quiet boy, who would go on to become a brash and confident showman, capable of selling tickets, and filling sporting arenas across the world.

There has always been an aura of confusion surrounding Hamed’s retirement, which came not much more than a year after his career defining loss to Mexican legend; Marco Antonio Barrera. The fight with Barrera has become a point of reference for every critic and conspiracy theorist. The somewhat lazy and obvious assumption being; that Hamed was well beaten and exposed at the highest levels of the sport, and thus retired to avoid further embarrassment.

On the surface this seems like a credible reason, and, almost certainly, the loss to Barrera was one of the fundamental reasons why Hamed did retire, right in the middle of his physical prime. However, there were many other issues that contributed to Hamed’s retirement; it was a sporting death by a thousand cuts….

At the tender age of twenty, Hamed fought for his first prestigious accolade; the European Bantamweight title. The young Hamed won a wide points decision over the seasoned and durable Italian, Vincenzo Belcastro, who Hamed knocked down in the 1st and 11th rounds. That same year, in 1994, Hamed knocked out Freddy Cruz to capture the WBC International Super-Bantamweight title; which Hamed successfully defended six times, each time knocking out his opponent inside four rounds.

Then, in 1995, the call came for Hamed’s first shot at a world title. Taken on short notice, and moving up in weight, Hamed defeated Steve Robinson to win the WBO Featherweight title, and in doing so he became the youngest ever British World Champion, at the age of just twenty one. Hamed would go on to defend his WBO title successfully on fifteen occasions, before losing it for reasons outside of the boxing ring.

From 1995 to 2001, Hamed became the dominant force in the featherweight division, and a sporting and cultural phenomenon in his British homeland and further afield. During his heyday, Hamed met with, and was decorated by, Royalty from two sovereign nations. He had musical collaborations with The Ministry of Sound; he did commercials for Pizza Hut and Audi. He had a range of merchandise; posters, clothes, videos, statues and even his own Playstation game.

Inside the ring Hamed was equally sensational. He defeated no less than nine current, former or future world title holders. In 1997, he unified the WBO and IBF titles; with an 8th round TKO win over Tom Johnson. The American had successfully defended his title eleven times prior to the fight with the Prince. The following year, Hamed defeated the ageing three-weight world champion; Wilfredo Vasquez via 8th round TKO. Vasquez had been the current WBA Featherweight champion, but fearing unification with WBO, the WBA stripped Vasquez of his title. Two years later Hamed unified the WBO and WBC titles with a dull point’s decision victory over Cesar Soto in Detroit, USA.

Hamed’s single best victory perhaps came against Vuyani Bungu on the 11th of March, 2000, in London, England. Bungu had defeated Kennedy McKinney in 1994 to win the IBF Super-Bantamweight title. Bungu hadn’t lost a fight for over eight years, and had successfully defended his IBF world title on fourteen prior occasions. Hamed entered the arena on a magic carpet that hovered over the audience below before coming back down to earth; he then stepped off the carpet and continued his ring walk with hip-hip impresario P.Diddy by his side. Bungu fought bravely, but Hamed defeated him via TKO in the 4th round.

There was another thrilling fight and KO victory to come, against the big punching, but seriously outgunned, Augie Sanchez in Connecticut that same year. But the inevitable march towards Barrera and retirement had seemingly begun….

In fact, the seeds of Hamed’s discontent had been sown as early as 1998. Hamed’s gloomy demeanour in the build up to the fight with Vasquez wasn’t in keeping with flamboyant stars outgoing personality. After the fight, Hamed split from promoter Frank Warren, and it soon become clear that Hamed was also having problems with his long time trainer, friend and mentor; Brendan Ingle. Things came to head with Ingle, surrounding and during the October 1998 fight with durable Irishman, and future world title holder, Wayne McCullough.

During the entertaining fight, Hamed refused to make eye contact with Ingle between rounds, Ingle dished out advice, but Hamed sat stony faced and looking entirely indifferent to that advice. At the start of the rest period between rounds 11 and 12, Hamed refused to sit down and seemed to unceremoniously push Ingle away.

Later, Hamed would go on record to say, that he felt Ingle desperately wanted him to lose against McCullough. Perhaps Hamed said this, because Ingle himself was on record as saying that since Hamed’s win over Johnson, the money, fame and praise Hamed had received, had made the highly egotistical fighter difficult to train. Immediately after the fight with McCullough, Hamed split from Ingle.

The history of the 2001 fight between ‘Prince’ Naseem Hamed and Marco Antonio Barrera has been re-written. A dominant performance by Barrera, in a competitive fight that two judges scored 115-112, has been rewritten as schooling; an embarrassing and uncompetitive boxing lesson for Hamed. The historical reality of that fight is somewhat different to its current perception.

Without questioning an honest and open Naseem Hamed it is hard to say, with any degree of certainty, why the man who dominated the featherweight division for half of a decade, retired at the inopportune moment which he did. However, there are clearly a number of contributory reasons:

Hamed was becoming more deeply and openly religious as his career progressed, he often surrounded himself with religious symbolism, and consigned himself to promoting his Islamic faith; a faith that was under scrutiny after the September 11th attacks. It was not an easy time to be a Muslim in America; it was more difficult still for a high profile sports star, known for flaunting that faith at every given opportunity. Perhaps Hamed felt it was the correct decision to withdraw from the limelight, as his religious convictions became increasingly passionate, studious and all consuming.

Hamed’s split from long time mentors, like Frank Warren, and more significantly, trainer Brendan Ingle must have been traumatic affairs that may have left Hamed deeply disillusioned. Not to mention feeling somewhat abandoned and isolated.

Hamed’s loss to Barrera; was not just a significant sporting defeat, but also a difficult commercial conundrum. HBO seemed to lose faith; contract negotiations become protracted and difficult and then stalled and broke down all together. Adidas ended their long term and deeply lucrative sponsorship of Hamed after the defeat.

A total of 21 years, 10 years of which as a professional, living the boxing life; training hard, eating right, making and selling fights. Perhaps this had worn Hamed’ infectious enthusiasm down to the bone; see the Vasquez fight press conference where Hamed seems deeply disinterested in proceedings.

Fame; Hamed was internationally famous, with news of his fights being broadcast around the world. In his heyday, Hamed got more than ten million viewers tuning in for his fights on free-to-view network ITV, in country of sixty million that is an extraordinary achievement.
Haito
Haito

Posts : 212
Join date : 2011-02-22
Age : 35
Location : Cheltenham

Back to top Go down

Superb piece on Hamed Empty Re: Superb piece on Hamed

Post by Rowley on Sat 24 Nov 2012, 4:24 pm

Like you Haito. massive Hamed fan, my first love as a boxing fan and they always say you never really get over your first love. As the article alludes to guess we will never really know why Naz chose to retire when he did particularly as he seems a fairly privvate person nowadays but if nothing else the pice serves as a decent reminder for all the "Barrera exposed the hype job" folk as to how good a champion Naz was for a good number of years before that loss.

Rowley
Admin
Admin

Posts : 22053
Join date : 2011-02-17
Age : 46
Location : I'm just a symptom of the modern decay that's gnawing at the heart of this country.

Back to top Go down

Superb piece on Hamed Empty Re: Superb piece on Hamed

Post by Haito on Sat 24 Nov 2012, 4:30 pm

Change of name Rowley?

Yeah i think as time passes the "Hamed was a hype job" bandwagon seems to be growing as the Barrera fight seems to have become the only fight some seem to judge Hamed on when infact he beat and beat well a fair few very good operators.

I knew and have alluded to in the past about the Ingle - Hamed breakdown and the subsequent derailing that Hamed went on but i didnt know that the breakdown was happening during fights and ran as deep as this article says. Very interesting read.
Haito
Haito

Posts : 212
Join date : 2011-02-22
Age : 35
Location : Cheltenham

Back to top Go down

Superb piece on Hamed Empty Re: Superb piece on Hamed

Post by jimdig on Sat 24 Nov 2012, 5:44 pm

I have always believed that Naz broke from Ingle because of the pay structure. Ingle was getting to large a piece of the pie. As for Hamed's retirement, recently he has stated that it was down to hand problems, saying that the power that he was dishing out had taken its toll. While I don't believe that this was the reason, I think it may be partly true. I think it is very likely that he was just sick of what he was putting his body through, dieting, training etc. To mis quote marvin hagler, 5 am jogs are harder to do when your getting out from under silk sheets. And its got to be even harder when your not training with mates (like ingle and his camp).

The Barrera defeat gave Hamed the oppertunity to hang them up and live his life. Its frustrating for a fan, but as a man I certainly can't blame him.

jimdig

Posts : 1527
Join date : 2011-03-14

Back to top Go down

Superb piece on Hamed Empty Re: Superb piece on Hamed

Post by TRUSSMAN66 on Sat 24 Nov 2012, 6:14 pm

Too simplistic jimdig....

Got a slapping and as he was a "bully" didn't fancy anymore.....

Don't forget he came back and was tremendously "gunshy".............


TRUSSMAN66

Posts : 38509
Join date : 2011-02-02

Back to top Go down

Superb piece on Hamed Empty Re: Superb piece on Hamed

Post by Haito on Sat 24 Nov 2012, 6:22 pm

112-115 on two scorecards isnt a "slapping" Although it was a clear loss it certainly wasnt the beat down that some seem to think it was. I do feel that loss did bring home to Hamed that if he was to ever beat the very best, he would need to be 100% committed to the cause, something he wasnt and as Truss added i dont think he did fancy it anymore.
Haito
Haito

Posts : 212
Join date : 2011-02-22
Age : 35
Location : Cheltenham

Back to top Go down

Superb piece on Hamed Empty Re: Superb piece on Hamed

Post by TRUSSMAN66 on Sat 24 Nov 2012, 6:26 pm

He got his butt handed to him...

Loved the ringbuckle bit....

Horrible creature Hamed.............

Still for someone that did everything wrong.....he had an exceptional career and fairplay..

TRUSSMAN66

Posts : 38509
Join date : 2011-02-02

Back to top Go down

Superb piece on Hamed Empty Re: Superb piece on Hamed

Post by Nico the gman on Sat 24 Nov 2012, 6:39 pm

My belief is that retiring so early Hamed tarnishes his legacy,no questioning about his talent,but questions will alway's be asked could Hamed have beaten Morales,Marquez or even Barrera in a rematch.
We all have opinions as to how these fights would have ended but sadly we will never know,I feel Hamed cheated himself as well as his fans by retiring so early.
Definitely not a likeable bloke outside the ring, alway's came over that he had a chip on his shoulder but good to watch no doubt about that.

Nico the gman

Posts : 1753
Join date : 2011-09-21
Location : middlesbrough

Back to top Go down

Superb piece on Hamed Empty Re: Superb piece on Hamed

Post by Sugar Boy Sweetie on Sat 24 Nov 2012, 7:19 pm

I don't think there's any great mystery to his retirement. He may have had some hand problems, but essentially he reached the point in his career when he was gonna be fighting the elite at the same time as his enthusiasm for the sport had started to dip. The Barrera fight was an eye opener as to how hard he was gonna have to keep on working to compete with the best (instead of just relying on his power) and he decided he wasn't up for it anymore. He didn't need the money, had seemingly grown tired of the fame, and didn't have the motivation to be disciplined anymore - game over.

The Barrera defeat wasn't a beat down, but similarly to Mayweather whooping Hatton is was a stark realisation for him & his fans that he perhaps wasn't as good as he thought. Naz was blessed with great talent but to say Robinson was probably his best & career defining win shows that despite a long run at the top of his division his actual record isn't exceptional. If he'd stuck around a few years longer, who knows?
Sugar Boy Sweetie
Sugar Boy Sweetie

Posts : 1869
Join date : 2011-01-26

Back to top Go down

Superb piece on Hamed Empty Re: Superb piece on Hamed

Post by Haito on Sat 24 Nov 2012, 7:40 pm

Along with Robinson good wins over the likes of Bungu, Sanchez, Ingle, Mccullough, Kelley and Johnson shouldnt be forgotten though. between 95 and 98 i do think Hamed was majestic and capable of beating the very best in the division. All if's and buts though which is a shame as when it really came to the business end of his career where Hamed really could have sealed his greatness it seems the wind was well and truly taken out of his sails by problems with his commitment, trainers and a defeat by Barrera which he never recovered from.
Haito
Haito

Posts : 212
Join date : 2011-02-22
Age : 35
Location : Cheltenham

Back to top Go down

Superb piece on Hamed Empty Re: Superb piece on Hamed

Post by Fists of Fury on Mon 26 Nov 2012, 3:17 pm

Just catching up with this, Haito. Very good piece about one of my all time favourite fighters. Hamed was my first boxing hero.

I still to this day believe that he was as good as if not better than the likes of Morales and Barrera. Unfortunately, his own issues around this time got in the way of what could have been a magnificent series of bouts, and I think those that have suggested above that he had fell out of love with the game are probably close to the mark - he'd have to have been the keen, hungry Hamed of a few years earlier to beat the likes of MAB.

One of Britain's finest boxers, and one of the world's finest entertainers.

Fists of Fury
Admin
Admin

Posts : 11721
Join date : 2011-02-17
Age : 32
Location : Birmingham, England

http://bloxhamcricket.tumblr.com/

Back to top Go down

Superb piece on Hamed Empty Re: Superb piece on Hamed

Post by eddyfightfan on Mon 26 Nov 2012, 6:33 pm

the great shame is that all the top guys lost to each other around that time (morales/barrera, manny/morales, marquez/manny) so one fight would not have defined him, and now all those fighters have gone on to achieve more than him, and he was probably the most exciting of the bunch

eddyfightfan

Posts : 2925
Join date : 2011-02-24

Back to top Go down

Superb piece on Hamed Empty Re: Superb piece on Hamed

Post by manos de piedra on Mon 26 Nov 2012, 6:59 pm

I actually thought the top guys fighting each other with mixed results made things even better. It meant some great rivalries. The bigger shame was Hamed couldnt keep it together and go on and join them in their rivalries.

manos de piedra

Posts : 5274
Join date : 2011-02-21

Back to top Go down

Superb piece on Hamed Empty Re: Superb piece on Hamed

Post by tunes666 on Mon 26 Nov 2012, 8:55 pm

when the going got tough, he got his coat.

tunes666

Posts : 1557
Join date : 2011-05-31

Back to top Go down

Superb piece on Hamed Empty Re: Superb piece on Hamed

Post by Guest on Mon 26 Nov 2012, 9:18 pm

Firmly with FoF on this...

Hamed is a piece of work but as a fighter, and actually the other more celebrated greats of that time (Morales, MAB, Marquez and Manny) really got me excited about the lower weights and lit the fuse for my boxing interest.

Whilst looking back fondly on the excitement he brought, which is probably the best way to view his career, it does pain me that the Hamed who lost to MAB was not a true reflection on the peak Hamed.

Now I could never say he would beat MAB, I certainly think a fit, focused Hamed would have done a far better job and could have been involved in some great fights with the Mexican trio.

He pretty much stopped boxing by that point and relied solely on single power punches. Far removed from the guy who used to move, jab and you know, try to box...

Guest
Guest


Back to top Go down

Superb piece on Hamed Empty Re: Superb piece on Hamed

Post by Strongback on Mon 26 Nov 2012, 11:14 pm

TRUSSMAN66 wrote:

Got a slapping and as he was a "bully" didn't fancy anymore.....

Don't forget he came back and was tremendously "gunshy".............



Gotta agree with the Trussmeister here (he must have done a couple of sets of real squats as he's talking sense).

Hamad got found out. The score card didn't reflect the humiliating manner of the defeat.


Strongback

Posts : 6529
Join date : 2011-07-01
Location : Matchroom Sports Head Office

Back to top Go down

Superb piece on Hamed Empty Re: Superb piece on Hamed

Post by eddyfightfan on Tue 27 Nov 2012, 12:23 am

whats amazing is the quality of opponents he beat with his style, as truss said he did everything wrong, and still was sucessfull, and by the end of his career he was more interested in partying then training, fair to say he could have been much more than he became had he had the right mindset. that said i dont think anyone will ever get away with that kind of audacity in the ring again, still love to watch his fights master of avoiding shots and punches from crazy angles, never held his hands up ever and ko power to rivial anyone

eddyfightfan

Posts : 2925
Join date : 2011-02-24

Back to top Go down

Superb piece on Hamed Empty Re: Superb piece on Hamed

Post by Strongback on Tue 27 Nov 2012, 2:22 am

People shouldn't forget how nasty and disrespectful Hamed was to his lesser opponents in the ring.

He was never a nice guy. He continually did his mocking trick with MAB only to be met with a face full of leather.

That was satisfying.

The little Italian Euro champ that Hamed mocked and jeered in a shameless, cruel and callous manner must have enjoyed watching MAB get pee'd off. The little twerp getting his head hopped off the turn buckle was the piece de resistance, the cause and effect of a culmination of bad behaviour towards MAB that night.


Strongback

Posts : 6529
Join date : 2011-07-01
Location : Matchroom Sports Head Office

Back to top Go down

Superb piece on Hamed Empty Re: Superb piece on Hamed

Post by dragonbreath on Tue 27 Nov 2012, 5:20 pm

Haito wrote:112-115 on two scorecards isnt a "slapping" Although it was a clear loss it certainly wasnt the beat down that some seem to think it was. I do feel that loss did bring home to Hamed that if he was to ever beat the very best, he would need to be 100% committed to the cause, something he wasnt and as Truss added i dont think he did fancy it anymore.

112-115 seems generous to Hamed in my opinion. It was clear MAB was to quick, technically superior, smarter and just in a different class

dragonbreath

Posts : 644
Join date : 2012-03-06

Back to top Go down

Superb piece on Hamed Empty Re: Superb piece on Hamed

Post by Haito on Tue 27 Nov 2012, 6:51 pm

dragonbreath wrote:
Haito wrote:112-115 on two scorecards isnt a "slapping" Although it was a clear loss it certainly wasnt the beat down that some seem to think it was. I do feel that loss did bring home to Hamed that if he was to ever beat the very best, he would need to be 100% committed to the cause, something he wasnt and as Truss added i dont think he did fancy it anymore.

112-115 seems generous to Hamed in my opinion. It was clear MAB was to quick, technically superior, smarter and just in a different class


MAB was certainly the better of the two by a long way that night and he did make Hamed look very amatuerish at times but for me watching the biggest thing i noticed was just how lost Hamed looked in the ring. He was woefully underprepared and was pot shotting his way through the 12 rounds. Now part of this is due to the way MAB fought but it clearly was not a peak Hamed in the ring that night.

Strongy - agreed, Some of Hamed's antics were far from savoury and as a human being he's a disrespectful fella for sure but you also have to acknowledge that he did a hell of a lot for boxing at the lower weights. He set the divisions alight and alot of the lower weight boxers around at the time owe alot to Hamed for bringing such interest. A true entertainer who at his best i think he was a match for anybody.
Haito
Haito

Posts : 212
Join date : 2011-02-22
Age : 35
Location : Cheltenham

Back to top Go down

Superb piece on Hamed Empty Re: Superb piece on Hamed

Post by eddyfightfan on Wed 28 Nov 2012, 5:28 pm

even though he was decisively beaten it wasn't a masterclass by any stretch of the imagination, MAB was also been frustrated a lot during the fight, his work rate was relatively low, he even allowed naz to nick a few rounds mid fight by not throwing enough. he allowed naz to wind him up, and was very lucky not to have at least 2-3 points deducted for his behaviour during the fight, hitting on the break, holding naz down and worst of all at least 4-5 low blows. the last 2 rounds were also annoying as naz refused to go for the knockout he kind of gave up, he didnt look tired but wasnt listening to manny who was basically saying try to ko him even if it means kod yourself. i think a combination of points off plus a huge rally in the last 2 rounds could have swung it (was 115-112 on the cards after all), not saying naz deserves credit for the performance or anything but the myth about a schooling exposing a fraud couldn't be further from the truth.

eddyfightfan

Posts : 2925
Join date : 2011-02-24

Back to top Go down

Superb piece on Hamed Empty Re: Superb piece on Hamed

Post by Super D Boon on Wed 28 Nov 2012, 6:29 pm

I think classing this as a "superb piece" depends on your view of the boxer. Personally I think it's a highly subjective piece clearly written by an uber- fan.

I'm always of the opinion that Hamed was something of a bully , that, when shown up didn't fancy it anymore. Whatever the excuses for the defeat, Ingle, too much money, increased faith etc etc , he lost, his ego got irreperably damaged and after an unspectacular comeback skulked off into oblivion.

Hamed polarizes opinion and I for one could not stand him and his loss to Barrera ranks as one of my favourite all time fights! Very Happy

Super D Boon

Posts : 2078
Join date : 2011-07-03

Back to top Go down

Superb piece on Hamed Empty Re: Superb piece on Hamed

Post by ShahenshahG on Wed 28 Nov 2012, 6:33 pm

Did you attend the robinson fight?

ShahenshahG

Posts : 15635
Join date : 2011-02-11
Age : 33
Location : The happiest man a morning ever sees

http://www.wwwdotcom.com

Back to top Go down

Superb piece on Hamed Empty Re: Superb piece on Hamed

Post by Super D Boon on Thu 29 Nov 2012, 12:31 am

I don't like talking about that fight!

Super D Boon

Posts : 2078
Join date : 2011-07-03

Back to top Go down

Superb piece on Hamed Empty Re: Superb piece on Hamed

Post by Sponsored content


Sponsored content


Back to top Go down

Back to top


 
Permissions in this forum:
You cannot reply to topics in this forum