Tag Archives: boxing


The Legend of Cleto Reyes boxing gloves

Almost a year ago I wrote a blog on the Cleto Reyes (https://nicholasspyer.com/2011/03/30/hecho-en-mexico-the-story-of-cleto-reyes-boxing-gloves/). As part of the excellent HBO 24/7 series this video shows the gloves being made.


Blood, guts and champion once again, introducing Mexican boxer Jorge ‘Travieso’ Arce

Jorge 'Travieso' Arce

Jorge 'Travieso' Arce

What exemplifies a Mexican ring warrior? Fighting heart, grit, determination, the will to win, a come forward and not a backwards step taken aggressive fighter. Blood and guts you might say.

In 65 fights Jorge ‘Travieso’ Arce [won 57 (KO 44) + lost 6 (KO 3) + drawn 2] has won the hearts and minds of many a boxing aficionado bringing the Mexican fighter spirit to the ring each time he fights. A star in his native Los Mochis, Sinaloa, Mexico – where he has made appearances on several Mexican reality TV shoes, extending his appeal outside of the ropes. The pint-sized fighter (5′ 4½″ / 164cm) has an effervescent personality – Arce’s trademark ring entrance features him wearing a black cowboy hat (thus earning him the nickname “The Mexican Cowboy”) and sucking a cherry lollipop.

His professional achievements include WBO World Light Flyweight, WBC World Light Flyweight, Interim WBC World Flyweight, Interim WBA World Super Flyweight, WBO World Super Flyweight, and just added to the list is the WBO World Super Bantamweight Champion. Arce can fight. His style isnt from the Floyd Mayweather Jnr school though, he toughs it out, comes straight at you, gloves pressed together under his chin and unloads. This is pressure fighting at its Mexican best. Not always pretty, not always defensive minded, but very effective and very fan friendly. This is what has made Arce so popular, you don’t watch his fights expecting to see a flashy showman, what you know you will get everytime is a bloody, vicious war in the ring. Win or lose.

Take his most recent fight – facing Wilfredo Vazquez, Jr (son of the Puerto Rican legend of the same name) at the MGM Grand Las Vegas. Lets be clear, Arce was not expected to win this one. He was brought in as a seasoned but probably past his best pro, and to provide the young, slick Vazquez a stiff test. Youth and flash skills would prevail all agreed in the run up. Arce thought different. He took the war to Vasquez, pulled himself off the canvas after a knockdown early on and did whats he’s done time and time – toughed it out and brutalised the younger, fresher and faster man to take the WBO World Super Bantamweight Champion – making Arce a world champion in 3 weight classes. A feat that puts him up there with the Mexican ring royalty of Barrera, Morales and Chavez. It was a great fight and what boxing is all about.

Jorge 'Travieso' Arce

A blood and guts fighter - Jorge 'Travieso' Arce

As the new world champion Arce has reopened doors to fights in a red hot division. Old rivalries with fellow veterans Vic Darchinyan can now be ignited once again. Exciting times beckon. My advice is enjoy Jorge Arce while he’s still fighting as they don’t make them like him often!

The golden life of Oscar De La Hoya

A fabulous insight into the life and trials of Oscar De La Hoya courtesy of Sky Sports’ excellent Ringside magazine show. Oscar is an inspiration in the sport and its fascinating to hear how he views his career and what kept him on the right path during his reign as boxing’s “Golden Boy”.

Guts and the world of Bernard Hopkins

A rare glimpse into the world of one of the most intriguing legends of modern boxing – Bernard Hopkins. In this interview Hopkins shares some insight into whats made him and how he continues to defy the odds and father time:

All rise for the new middleweight king Sergio Martinez

Sergio Martinez

In most respected 2010 boxing reviews the fighter that came out of top was the Argentinean Sergio Martinez, all this from a fighter that never laced a glove on until the age of 20 (ancient in boxing terms).

Martinez accomplished his rise to the top of the middleweight pile with a crushing KO of Paul “the punisher” Williams – see the video below.

It was the kind of finish that requires no explanation, no scorecards or judges. With it Martinez added to a trio of fights inside a calendar year that propelled him into the boxing elite. This started with a debatable loss to the same Paul Williams he would crush at the end of the same year and the pumling of Kelly Pavlik to take the WBC and WBO Middleweight titles.

Martinez has the world at his feet as 2011 starts. He begins with a fight for the WBC Diamond Belt against Sergiy Dzinziruk. He is expected to win this conclusively and judging by recent training footage (see videos on this post) he looks in tip top shape to do just that.

To update this post with the outcome of the Martinez vs Dzinziruk fight, check this HBO highlight video out to see just how amazing Martinez was on the night:


Jamie Moore – British boxing great

Jamie Moore

Jamie Moore


When Jamie Moore announced his retirement from boxing earlier this year British boxing fans lost a genuine warrior from their ranks. Moore attained British, Commonwealth and European championship belts but never made it to world title honours – that is no reflection on his ability though, more in my mind a product of being held back in domestic level fights for too long. With a final record of 32 wins (23 by KO) and 5 losses, Moore certainly can be said to have a comprehensive career and took many a scalp along the way.Two fights stick out for me though – both against tough British rivals and both real wars, the fights against Matthew Macklin and Ryan Rhodes have become classics.   

Both of these fights are the kind of action that can end a career, they are the sort of fights that age their participants. Moore rose from his fight against Macklin (after his spectacular KO in the 9th round) as the genuine article but 3 long years later and now with the well-paying European title added Moore met light middleweight rival Ryan Rhodes in what would be another night of brutal brilliance. Although Moore lost the fight and with it his dreams of a world title, you couldn’t take anything away from his performance. He came to fight and in the process gave far more of himself that was required.  

In his retirement statement Moore perhaps summed up his career best:  

“I have had a fantastic career and achieved more than I could have dreamed of by winning Irish, British, Commonwealth and European light-middleweight titles.  

I retire with my head held high knowing I contested some of the best fights ever witnessed in a British ring, and proud of the fact that, win or lose, fans were going to see an exciting fight.”

Ricardo Mayorga – the craziest man in sport

It’s easy to write off someone as wildly entertaining as Ricardo Mayorga as a sideshow in boxing – mad, bad, trash talking ‘El Matador’ is everything but ordinary. 

Ricardo Mayorga

To write him off would be to ignore the pedigree of the opposition he has faced – Oscar De La Hoya, Shane Mosley, Felix Trinidad and Fernando Vargas to name but a handful. At his finest the Nicaraguan bad boy Mayorga was throw back to the good old days of real fighters, taking on everything with scant regard for manners and rules.

Ricardo Mayorga Ring Magazine Cover

There are many enjoyable highlights from Mayorga’s career – frequent press conference brawls, childish taunting of his opponents (see below video of his exchange with Vargas), a habit of letting fighters take clean open shots on his head in pure macho demonstration of his strength! His heavy smoking – while training goes against every tenant of boxing fitness but somehow Mayorga made it part of his persona.

Mayorga will probably be remembered for his losses to truly great fighters and his defection to the Mixed Martial Arts as a fringe contender there. His boxing style was certainly not the sweet science in action – he was a pure street fighting brawler, windmilling punches and hoping for the best. He was enjoyable to watch though and you always knew there would be a proper tear up if he was fighting and for that we should salute his contribution to boxing!