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Commentating during fights - are we that dumb?

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Post by JabMachineMK2 Thu 11 Dec 2014, 1:28 am

Morning all,

Just been watching some old classics, Ali vs Frazier 3, Holmes vs Norton etc. and noticed a distinct lack of commentary during rounds. It made me think that now you barely hear any of the actual action when watching on TV through Jim Watts incessant rambling about "Arum Puncheese" and other commentators needing to show how knowledgeable they are while giving us a play by play.

Do you think the current level is good or we should revert back to just the odd word about whats happening or opinion thrown in the middle of a round?

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Post by Derbymanc Thu 11 Dec 2014, 8:23 am

I think it needs a mix of the 2, although our commentary seems to get worse and worse with inane ramblings.

Commentary can help you understand why a certain fighter is fighting the way he does or just to explain some of the basics to the newer fans watching.

It has it's place but it needs tempering a little bit.

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Post by 88Chris05 Thu 11 Dec 2014, 10:03 am

I agree that one trait all the inept commentators seem to share is that they all talk too much during the fight. You don't need to be talking every single second - and you certainly don't need to be talking when we're trying to listen to what's being said in the corner between rounds. Also, this assumption that all great fighters will make great commentators or pundits needs to be knocked on the head. Lennox Lewis - love him, think he's a dude. But he was abysmal on HBO.

I remember in the Mayweather Judah fight where Lampley made some point or other as the fight got underway, and then hinted at Lewis to come in with something. Cue a few seconds of awkward silence before Lewis, his voice as flat as a witch's teet, chimes in with...."they're both wearing leather shorts...."
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Post by wheelchair1991 Thu 11 Dec 2014, 11:07 am

Our commentry is dire on these shores i do like john rawling though he pretty good no need to mention Halling as its unanimous on here that he is rubbish

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Post by 88Chris05 Thu 11 Dec 2014, 11:15 am

Not keen on Rawling myself, wheelchair, though he's certainly better than Halling.

The Rawling-Halling combination. Could be the Hoddle-Waddle of their era.
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Post by TRUSSMAN66 Thu 11 Dec 2014, 12:34 pm

Listen to Ryan/Clancy and you get unbiased objective summation without the brown nose drivel...

Halling fails on all counts.....But then again I remember a Brit commentator shouting..."Get in there Frank"....

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Post by hazharrison Thu 11 Dec 2014, 12:43 pm

I'm not keen on Jim Lampley's commentary for HBO. He's undoubtedly excellent, however, he sets the scene so comprehensively, I find he sucks the drama out of the fight. Merchant could do exactly the same thing but would flower up his description to make it more digestible.

I'm not keen on the constant references to punch stats either (but I get that it's an American thing).

Don Dunphy will always be the boss for me.

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Post by hazharrison Thu 11 Dec 2014, 12:45 pm

TRUSSMAN66 wrote:Listen to Ryan/Clancy and you get unbiased objective summation without the brown nose drivel...

Halling fails on all counts.....But then again I remember a Brit commentator shouting..."Get in there Frank"....

To be fair to Carpenter, he remained deeply embarrassed about that comment for the rest of his career.

Halling does it every week - and then tweets Hearn fighters incessantly licking their butts.

We used to have journalists commentating - pros who'd criticise the fighters (if required).

Now, the likes of Halling are paid more to sell Sky's product. The journalistic ethos has disappeared.

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Post by milkyboy Thu 11 Dec 2014, 1:23 pm

Used to despise rawling... Until halling came along. It's like, 'I see your numbskull and raise you an imbecile'.

The only decent commentator on these shores since reg, has been Ian darke. Steve holdsworth's ok. Why the biggest platform employs the biggest numpties only they can answer... But they do it with Stuart Barnes for rugby and a series of cumquatts doing football. Given how professional and commercially astute an Organisation sky is, I can only assume that they think controversy sells... Either that or the good guys have too much pride to toe the party line, and follow the script.

As an aside. Having listened to some outrageous homey commentaries when I've been abroad, the 'get in their frank' bit never bothered me too much from carpenter. It was inappropriate but it was a Brit against a yank. His comments at the end of bugner cooper were a complete disgrace though.

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Post by 88Chris05 Thu 11 Dec 2014, 1:38 pm

Yep. "Oh my, he's given it to Boogner! He's given it to Joe Boogner! How on earth do you take a man's titles like that!?" or words to that effect, wasn't it?

I thought Cooper beat Aussie Joe, mind you, but Carpenter and Cooper teaming up in the aftermath to moan about Gibbs' decision probably helped turn public opinion against Bugner even more.

Agree that Holdsworth isn't bad, apart from the Ottke-Byron Mitchell fight, which annoyed me for some reason. Like most I saw it as a close one which could have gone either way (I'd love to dump it in that same 'gift' category as some of Sven's other wins, but I can't in all good conscience) but Holdsworth was telling the audience that Mitchell wasn't even in the fight and that Ottke was producing a masterclass.....He did keep mentioning Calzaghe's name throughout the broadcast, though, so maybe he was trying to talk up what an amazing fight a unification between the pair would have been or something.

Just a small gripe, though. Not sure why it annoyed me so much, really. It was only bloody Ottke!
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Post by TRUSSMAN66 Thu 11 Dec 2014, 1:44 pm

Holdsworth when he knows a result commentates accordingly..

He retrospectively commentated on Paz-Haugen and gave it to Paz..

It was a robbery and If he' done his homework would have read that no one gave Paz that fight..

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Post by hazharrison Thu 11 Dec 2014, 1:51 pm

Ok, dream commentary team - two commentators plus an expert (and an alternative nightmare version). Here's mine:

Dream: Barry Tompkins, Don Dunphy and Ray Leonard.

Nightmare: Halling, Jim Neilly and George Foreman.

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Post by 88Chris05 Thu 11 Dec 2014, 1:57 pm

Dream team: Ian Darke, Gil Clancy, Jim Watt (pre-21st century version).

Nightmare team: Nick Halling, Bob Sheridan, Duke McKenzie.
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Post by TRUSSMAN66 Thu 11 Dec 2014, 1:59 pm

Jim watt has always been crap.."That's the good news"...

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Post by milkyboy Thu 11 Dec 2014, 2:03 pm

Bugner was on a hiding to nothing for beating our 'enry anyway such was the British public's love affair for the brut splashing whingebag... But carpenter nailed down the coffin for him. It was a close fight, most, but not all, saw it for cooper. But a pro cooper crowd were enraged.

Carpenter was generally pretty good but he had his favourites and let his emotions get in the way of his job.

Cooper lost a libel case to Gibbs after questioning his integrity in his biography... And blanked him for something like 25 years.

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Post by 88Chris05 Thu 11 Dec 2014, 2:17 pm

I've always cut Watt a bit more slack than others, Truss, and maintain that he used to be a pretty good commentator, particularly when paired with Darke or Reg. I used to defend him on here as best I could when he go one of his weekly kickings, but even I've run out of faith this past couple of years or so, when he has been truly dreadful. But the Watt who had Gutteridge to keep him in check was very capable.

And on top of that I just really like his voice. No idea why.
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Post by hazharrison Thu 11 Dec 2014, 3:20 pm

I don't mind Watt at all!

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Post by 88Chris05 Thu 11 Dec 2014, 3:33 pm

That Jim Watt commentary bingo card that got drawn up was good, I must say.

Arum puncheese
Bang on the chin
Oh good shot!
I like what he's doing in there
I preferred his work
Nothing wrong with that
Fancies the job
That was terrific!
What the judges are looking at
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Post by hazharrison Thu 11 Dec 2014, 3:48 pm

CAROL FRAMPTON!

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Post by Coxy001 Thu 11 Dec 2014, 3:54 pm

hazharrison wrote:I don't mind Watt at all!

I love a bit of Watts myself. Proper yank material

http://topoften.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/01/Naomi-Watts.jpg

In terms of Jim Watt, used to be very very good alongside Carpenter (had a few lunch beers so that's right, isn't it?) but has gone massively downhill.

Bring back Darke, probably my favourite. Used to love listening to Kellerman, but he has simply become some WWF style commentator who must over-emphasise things for what they really are.

Who was the commentator who called Froch vs Taylor who was going nuts in the 12th round? "And Taylor STAGGGGERS" - quite possibly one of my favourite rounds of commentary. Bernstein I think was calling it but wasn't him during that round for the most part.

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Post by 88Chris05 Thu 11 Dec 2014, 4:00 pm

Benny Ricardo with his bubble perm and bronzed glow, surely a shout for the worst commentator going as well. I wanted to put my foot through the TV screen when listening to him on the Bradley-Pacquiao (I) undercard. "Guillllleeerrrmo ah-Rrrrriiiigondeaux!"
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Post by TRUSSMAN66 Thu 11 Dec 2014, 5:04 pm

88Chris05 wrote:Benny Ricardo with his bubble perm and bronzed glow, surely a shout for the worst commentator going as well. I wanted to put my foot through the TV screen when listening to him on the Bradley-Pacquiao (I) undercard. "Guillllleeerrrmo ah-Rrrrriiiigondeaux!"

You never had to put up with Sean O'Grady, Alex Wallau and Chick Hearn..

Benny is the bollox compared to them..

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Post by John Bloody Wayne Thu 11 Dec 2014, 5:29 pm

I love Benny and Big George, I pray they'll one day be paired.

Objectively speaking the greatest scholar of boxing and commentator is Ronald McIntosh. Not only is his commentary the most charming and substantial, but he has most massive awesome head, plus a luscious voice. More of him please.

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Post by milkyboy Thu 11 Dec 2014, 6:35 pm

88Chris05 wrote:Benny Ricardo with his bubble perm and bronzed glow, surely a shout for the worst commentator going as well. I wanted to put my foot through the TV screen when listening to him on the Bradley-Pacquiao (I) undercard. "Guillllleeerrrmo ah-Rrrrriiiigondeaux!"

Prefer kellerman's rigondee-ow.

Apparently he's looking forward to gene paskle having a rendesvus with David lemi-eee-ux

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Post by TRUSSMAN66 Thu 11 Dec 2014, 7:39 pm

Kellerman is up his own butt........

I don't mind Al Bernstein although when he's bored in a fight it tends to show..

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Post by hogey Thu 11 Dec 2014, 8:28 pm

Used to think Reg Gutteridge got the balance about right behind the mic, mind you in those days Jim Watt was not so useless either.

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Post by Hammersmith harrier Thu 11 Dec 2014, 9:49 pm

Bernstein is the best of the current lot, doesn't show a lot of bias and just calls it as it is. Atlas can be alright when he hasn't got a bee in his bonnet about something while Malignaggi is pleasantly surprising.

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Post by wheelchair1991 Thu 11 Dec 2014, 10:09 pm

Yeah i like paulie i was gutted that he was brought in and then not used very well for Froch Groves 2

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Post by TRUSSMAN66 Thu 11 Dec 2014, 10:27 pm

Not sure why they brought him in..Wheels.

Flying him over for a big fee when you have better fighters over here that could do with the work.

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Post by wheelchair1991 Fri 12 Dec 2014, 9:37 am

Especially as they didnt really use him

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Post by AlexHuckerby Sat 13 Dec 2014, 4:52 pm

88Chris05 wrote:I agree that one trait all the inept commentators seem to share is that they all talk too much during the fight. You don't need to be talking every single second - and you certainly don't need to be talking when we're trying to listen to what's being said in the corner between rounds. Also, this assumption that all great fighters will make great commentators or pundits needs to be knocked on the head. Lennox Lewis - love him, think he's a dude. But he was abysmal on HBO.

I remember in the Mayweather Judah fight where Lampley made some point or other as the fight got underway, and then hinted at Lewis to come in with something. Cue a few seconds of awkward silence before Lewis, his voice as flat as a witch's teet, chimes in with...."they're both wearing leather shorts...."

Not as bad as George Foremans incessant manlove for anything De La Hoya did. "De La Hoya is doing a lot evenwhen he's doing nothing " No George....He was genuinely doing nothing....

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Post by John Bloody Wayne Sat 13 Dec 2014, 5:33 pm

Anybody hear the HBO commentary of Rosado v Lemieux? Kellerman was cringeworthy. Lampley had recently been inducted into the hall of fame, so fair enough he mentioned it during a fight and congratulated him. Lampley was gracious enough, then tried to switch focus back to the fight, but Kellerman just incessantly gushed over him. It was hard to hear without imagining him wrapping his arms around Lampley and weeping. "It is an honour to merely sit next to you Jim, to smell your scent, to hear your voice, to conceal my throbbing erection whenever you are close".

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Post by AlexHuckerby Sat 13 Dec 2014, 5:38 pm

Haha, might rewatch that one JBW. I watched that with no sound at my mates and was totally wrecked and lost 25 quid cos I went with Dulorme but picked Rosado so was raging.

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Post by Strongback Sat 13 Dec 2014, 5:56 pm

I like Bernstein. The problem I have with Watt is that he forms his opinion early in the fight and just sticks with it no matter what's happening in the ring.

Seems to be a bit of a debate going on in the media about using famous ex-sportsmen on TV instead of journalists. A show like Match of the Day turned into Linekar, Shearer et al tamely trudging through the show in the most humdrum banal manner imaginable. Good television journalism would appear to out of fashion. Talk shops with ex sportsmen seems to be the order of the day.

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Post by Dipper Brown Sat 13 Dec 2014, 6:11 pm

Agree with you Strongback about Watt. He can be insightful but like you say, far too often he decides on the narrative of the fight regardless of what goes on between the ropes.

Disagree about MOTD though. I think the balance is perfect. Don't see it as a boys club or anything like that and I love Neville and Carragher on Sky.

Could of course be a personal thing as I've always played football but never boxed.

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Post by John Bloody Wayne Sat 13 Dec 2014, 6:46 pm

I think it was during an undercard fight that Kellerman's tongue became overly intrusive.

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Post by Strongback Sat 13 Dec 2014, 9:24 pm

Kellerman attempting to interview Floyd after a fight and then Mosley comes into the ring with Hopkins was comedy gold. Max's ineptitude played out in full glare.

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Post by Dipper Brown Sun 14 Dec 2014, 11:54 am

Good to see Ed Robinson presenting the show last night. Doesn't go in much for the hyperbole, quite a laid back personality and knowledgable. Hope Sky use him more.

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