Late Breaking

Author Archives: Bart Barry

Mayweather-Pacquiao: It’s OK to be happy

Floyd Mayweather

By Bart Barry– The announcement came sometime Thursday, or maybe Tuesday, the announcement there would be an announcement coming soon from a professional athlete about a future sporting event. It was a reminder how unserious our time is that adults awaited such silliness, but there we were, men who are otherwise grandfathers, fathers, professionals, role models, even, collectively saying, “Whatever ... Read More »

Column without end, part 5

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By Bart Barry– Editor’s note: For part 4, please click here. * It is a question of competence much as intent. That is where boxing now stumbles in an exaggerated way that defies expectations more than most things in America do anymore. Whether the larger part of this country was ever competent is a question for fantasy, not history, but ... Read More »

Column without end, part 4

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By Bart Barry– Editor’s note: For part 3, please click here. * Another week comes to pass in the decisive erosion of public interest in our sport. Those curious about The Fight to Save Boxing do not migrate elsewhere within – they do not, anymore, find a minimumweight master or junior middleweight from a few towns over and redirect their ... Read More »

For an article about Mike Tyson, click here

miketyson

By Bart Barry– SAN ANTONIO – This column was supposed to be about a live theatrical performance by Mike Tyson, a review of sorts from ringside by a writer who lives above the historic Majestic Theatre, downtown, and attends most Broadway-musical productions that visit. “Mike Tyson: Undisputed Truth” was scheduled for Saturday night in the Lila Cockrell Theatre, a 2,000-seat ... Read More »

Retired: Juarez loses to Castellanos and calls it a career

SAN ANTONIO – Rocky Juarez spent his career being an honest prizefighter who never quite found within himself a transcendent performance when the occasion demanded one. Monday’s match was no exception, and Juarez’s retirement, announced immediately afterwards, was no surprise. Fighting in the main event of a good card at Cowboys Dancehall, Houston’s Juarez (30-11-1, 21 KOs) dropped a lopsided ... Read More »

With Mile High Mike as my mentor

Mike Alvarado

By Bart Barry- Ring the bell already, fool. I’ve written so many great columns in the past. That’s why you read me. And I’m more prepared for this column than any of those. This is the column for not just readers but writers, too, because they know what hard writing looks like. It’s for the readers also, don’t misunderstand, especially ... Read More »

Deontay Wilder, and an aficionado’s permission slip

Deontay Wilder

By Bart Barry- Saturday in Las Vegas, undefeated American heavyweight Deontay Wilder saw his 32-fight knockout streak come to a quiet end against Bermane Stiverne. Expected to force a violent conclusion to the match, regardless of victor, Wilder instead cautiously and exhaustedly made his way to the closing bell and won a wide decision, 120-107, 119-108 and 118-109. Stiverne, who ... Read More »

Column without end, part 3

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By Bart Barry- Editor’s note: For part 2, please click here. * MARFA, Texas – This city sits in a little known region of our country called “Big Bend” for the curve the Rio Grande takes. There is a national park that boasts Texas’ most challenging and beloved hiking trail to the top of the Chisos Mountains, but the basin ... Read More »

Portrait of HBO’s most-viewed fight of 2014, part 2

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By Bart Barry- Editor’s note: For part 1, please click here. * The week that began in February, ended in March and became the pinnacle of HBO boxing’s viewership feats in 2014 did not fool any of its participants or witnesses and still hasn’t. The ratings phenom who is Julio Cesar Chavez Jr. is not phenomenal at all when his ... Read More »

Portrait of HBO’s most-viewed fight of 2014, part 1

2014-12-28 11.07.18

By Bart Barry- The week that began in February, ended in March and became the pinnacle of HBO boxing’s viewership feats in 2014 began on a Thursday with dinner at La Gloria restaurant in the Pearl Brewery complex of the northern part of downtown San Antonio, a dinner that marked the first of the year’s biannual meetings of the Irish-American ... Read More »

Column without end, part 2

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By Bart Barry- Editor’s note: Part 1 can be found here. * Every kid under the age of 25 on the Metro de Madrid has Sergio Martinez’s haircut, and while none is likely imitating Martinez so much as imitating Martinez’s influences, whoever they are, an hour on the Madrid metro – with aspiring supermodels, male and female, all practicing their ... Read More »

Column without end, part 1

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By Bart Barry– BARCELONA – At the metaphorical center of this autonomous place on the Mediterranean Sea, an ostensibly Spanish city much nearer France than Madrid, stands La Sagrada Familia basilica, masterwork of its city’s greatest architect, Antoni Gaudí i Cornet, known the world over as Gaudí, a man whose patronymic bears a curious resemblance to the derisive modifier “gaudy.” ... Read More »

Terence Crawford, and optimists and evangelists

Terence Crawford

By Bart Barry- Saturday at CenturyLink Center in Omaha, Nebraskan lightweight champion Terence Crawford decisioned Mexican Raymundo Beltran lopsidedly, 119-109 and 118-110 and 119-109, in a match that was not large as its superlatives but demonstrated Crawford should stay at lightweight, which he won’t, Beltran was overrated, which no rater will admit, and Crawford should be 2014’s fighter of the ... Read More »

Full gonzo: Sleeping through Pacquiao-Algieri

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By Bart Barry– FORT WORTH, Texas – The understated perfection of architect Louis I. Kahn’s soft marble masterpiece, Kimbell Art Museum, known round the world as The Kimbell, is so palpable one cannot fathom hoarding its charms, if architectural charms were somehow hoardable, and feels a compulsion to share. Long a fan of friend and mentor Thomas Hauser’s accounts of ... Read More »

Pacquiao-Algieri: From opposite ends

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By Bart Barry Saturday at the Venetian in Macau, Filipino Manny Pacquiao will defend his welterweight title against New Yorker Chris Algieri, a junior welterweight titlist. It is a fight somewhat intriguing because, while few aficionados imagine the match will be close, a number disagree on its likely victor. Perspective plays a larger role than usual in determining where an ... Read More »

Kovalev-Hopkins: The fight of 2014

Sergey Kovalev

By Bart Barry- The most unexpected thing shared by guys who hit hardest is rarely how hard they hit or the speed of their attack. No, what surprises most about those guys is the nimbleness with which they take a backwards step the first three or four times you try to attack and smother them, their balletic willingness to move ... Read More »

Mental alignment, Bernard Hopkins and Sergey Kovalev

Bernard Hopkins

By Bart Barry– SAN MARCOS, Texas – Three miles southwest of Texas State University is a mostly waterless stretch of terrain called Purgatory Creek Natural Area, a verdant place complete with trails named after Dante, Ripheus, Ovid and Beatrice, for those with an Italian literary bent. Saturday at Boardwalk Hall in the American purgatory of Atlantic City, light heavyweight Bernard ... Read More »

MFAH & GGG: Enduring doubts

Gennady Golovkin

By Bart Barry- HOUSTON – Saturday this city’s largest art museum previewed for its members a fall exhibition, “Monet and the Seine,” that is unimpressive. Composed of middling efforts by the French Impressionist master, canvases from sundry places, some painted in cottoncandy hues and some deeply indebted to others’ influences and one so pedestrian Monet himself misdated it, this exhibition ... Read More »

Harmonious manhood: Nicholas Walters, Nonito Donaire and Corey Holcomb

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By Bart Barry– HOUSTON – Saturday at Carson, Calif.’s StubHub Center, a great fight venue with a moronic name, Jamaican featherweight Nicholas “Axe Man” Walters hacked former world champion Nonito “Filipino Flash” Donaire to a stump, in the co-main, and stopped him at the end of round 6. It was a case of dessert served before dinner, increasingly common in ... Read More »

The Axe Man cometh

Nicholas Walters

By Bart Barry– Saturday at StubHub Center in Carson, Calif., in a co-main event broadcast by HBO and certain to be more entertaining than what follows it, Jamaican featherweight titlist Nicholas “The Axe Man” Walters will fight “Filipino Flash” Nonito Donaire in a WBA unification match – being that both men already have WBA featherweight titles. Much as happened two ... Read More »

Jhonny, El Travieso, and Devil’s River

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By Bart Barry– DEL RIO, Texas – A few miles south of here begins the Mexican state of Coahuila, and about 40 miles north of here begins Devil’s River State Natural Area, and if you’re wondering which is more hospitable, it is Mexico – by far. There are lovely places whose brochures promise romantic getaways, and then there are mere ... Read More »

Canelo Alvarez, cable networks, and learned helplessness

Canelo Alvarez

By Bart Barry- Another game changer happened Tuesday. It came with a series of email announcements and a conference call and probably a press conference, somewhere, too, so big the news this time. It was an official notice Mexican junior middleweight Saul “Canelo” Alvarez changed American cable networks. If boxing historians return to this announcement someday, it will be to ... Read More »

Travel box and away

Manny Pacquiao

By Bart Barry– SAN ANTONIO – Saturday night I attended “Jazz’SAlive,” a two-day, free-admission jazz festival in the newly restored Travis Park, which abuts St. Mark’s, the gothic-revival Episcopal church where Lyndon Baines Johnson married Claudia Alta Taylor 80 years ago. As always, the event happened two weeks before the lovely weather arrives, reducing crowds still more than the festival’s ... Read More »

An old Floyd is not the old Floyd

Floyd Mayweather

By Bart Barry– Saturday at MGM Grand Garden Arena in a rematch few aficionados demanded, fewer still watched, and fewer yet found entertaining as its predecessor, American welterweight and super welterweight titlist Floyd “Money” Mayweather unanimously decisioned Argentine Marcos “El Chino” Maidana. After promising to prove himself to himself, not you, by stretching Maidana, Mayweather finished the fight circling shamelessly ... Read More »

Mayweather-Maidana 2: Circus of the sagging big top

Mayweather_maidana

By Bart Barry– Saturday at MGM Grand, over which a 20-story Manny Pacquiao banner likely will not drape, American welterweight Floyd “Money” Mayweather will make a rematch with Argentine Marcos “El Chino” Maidana as part of Mexican Independence Day festivities. Mayweather will seek the definitive victory that eluded him Cinco de Mayo weekend. The fight will happen on Sept. 13 ... Read More »

When a quest for great spectacles leaves boxing behind

PianoPavilion

By Bart Barry– FORT WORTH, Texas – There was a fight card in my hometown Saturday night, and I didn’t hesitate for a tick to forego it and make holiday plans to spend the weekend hundreds of miles away looking at buildings, yes buildings. In fact, hesitate is the wrong verb altogether because it implies choice, a pause over two ... Read More »

Another afternoon press conference for a local card

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By Bart Barry– The temperature in the parking lot is a reminder just how badly abused is the word “sweltering” by Americans anywhere above of the 30th parallel, a plane deeper than most of the Deep South. Heavy with wet, the heat does not sap or wilt or hang or haunt but envelops, and then saps and wilts and hangs ... Read More »

Prizefighting’s blurrily expressed intimacy

Floyd Mayweather

By Bart Barry– A couple years ago, apropos of violence and documentaries and Pablo Picasso, too, a writer whose work I admire mentioned in a correspondence with me that when he blurred his eyes at an Italian photojournalist’s treatment of pornography he “could arrange a fight image.” The idea has not left me. This column, then, will not treat one ... Read More »

Henri Matisse, and absorbing the lessons of predecessors in a way boxing does not

Matisse

By Bart Barry- SAN ANTONIO – This city’s largest art museum, SAMA, is now in the throes of a three-month exhibition, “Matisse: Life in Color,” that is exceptional by any museum’s standard of quality and particularly exceptional by this one’s. Frenchman Henri Matisse, a painter and sculptor and printmaker and papercutter and architect who resides in the top five of ... Read More »

Sergey Kovalev, and the genuine possibility of being Krushed by an Alien

Serhey Kovalev

By Bart Barry- Saturday in Atlantic City in another hideous but portentous mismatch on HBO, Russian light heavyweight titlist Sergey “Krusher” Kovalev raced through a helpless Australian named Blake Caparello, stumbling out the block and getting flashdropped in round 1 before spearchiseling his way to a TKO-2 result whose time was irrelevant and preordained. For the first time in Kovalev’s ... Read More »