Posted by George Hanson., Jr Esq. on May 21, 2012
Lady and the Champ—Robinson Retires Cauthen in Two!

Lady and the Champ—Robinson Retires Cauthen in Two!

The Mouthpiece
Lady and the Champ—Robinson Retires Cauthen in Two!

By: George Hanson Jr., Esq.

Date: Saturday, May 12, 2012
Venue: Newtown Athletic Club, Newtown, PA
Promoters: Brittany Rogers – Bam Boxing Promotions (www.bamonboxing.com)
Ring Announcer:   Larry Tornambe
Referees:           Gary Rosato & Shawn Clark
Matchmaker:            Brittany Rogers
Coverage:                www.gofightlive.tv
Photos:                    www.keyartphoto.com & www.christoneyphotography.com

“The stone that the builder refuse, will always be the head cornerstone” wails Bob Marley on the track Corner Stone written in 1969—a response to being rejected by his deceased White British father’s family—and released on the album Soul Rebel in 1970 in the UK by Trojan Records. I haven’t met anyone who could tell me the name of Marley’s father or anything about his family.  And frankly, I don’t give a damn.  Let them continue to live in obscurity with their snobbery and misguided theory of racial superiority. Nonetheless, Bob Marley “shook up the world” and is arguably the most recognizable figure worldwide next to Jesus and Muhammad Ali. That takes me to Philadelphia pugilist Ray Robinson who as a kid was thrown down a flight of stairs by his biological father, breaking both of his legs relegated to a body cast. But at eight-years-old he found a father in trainer Howard Mosley and they swept through the amateur ranks winning numerous titles and securing a promotional contract under the banner of Joe DeGuardia’s Star Boxing.

Lady and the Champ—Rogers and Robinson are all smiles.

“I love Brittany’s energy and her passion for boxing” stated Robinson.  Joining the punch-for-pay ranks in December 2006, the tall rangy southpaw fighter rolled off 11 consecutive victories. In boxing, as in life, there are setbacks and he would come up short posting back-to-back decision losses to hot prospects Brad Solomon and Shawn Porter finding himself without a promoter. “Things happen for a reason. She cares about you the fighter” retorted the new Pennsylvania State welterweight champion. Robinson and Rogers met at the Front Street boxing gym in Philadelphia where he was training at the start of his professional career. The then teenage Rogers was following her love for the sport by being a regular in learning the intricacies of the sweet science. They became fast friends and when Rogers started BAM Boxing Promotions Inc.,—under the guidance of her mentor, Uncle Russell, legendary promoter J. Russell Peltz—Robinson was the headliner at the inaugural show on September 30th of last year. His first fight since losing to Shawn Porter on July 16, 2010, Robinson showed no ring rust and boxed brilliantly in stopping tough Manuel Guzman in the 7th round.

Boxing can be a very cruel mistress in discarding an aged warrior for a young hungry lion. It seems as though it was only yesterday that Cauthen, two days shy of his 36th birthday, was Floyd “Money” Mayweather’s roommate at the 1996 Summer Olympics in Atlanta. Like Mayweather, he won a bronze medal ending a decorated amateur career, transitioning into the professional ranks.  Unlike the undefeated supremely talented Mayweather, Cauthen’s career has fallen short of expectations. He has never contested for one of the four major sanctioning bodies world titles and I would argue that it is not due to lack of talent. Boxing is a game of talent, smoking guns, mirrors, opportunities, marketing and a little hocus pocus. Thus, a week after the undefeated Mayweather captured the WBA junior-middleweight title from Miguel Cotto in his 43rd bout pocketing a reported $40 million payday, Cauthen was competing against the rabidly hungry 27-year-old Robinson for the vacant Pennsylvania welterweight title for a speculated $4,000 or less! The two former roommates—Mayweather and Cauthen— have entered the squared circle exactly the same number of times, yet one has made enough to rival the GDP of a small developing nation while the other has to maintain a 9 to 5!

Robinson landing the straight left that iced Cauthen.

Peltz knows something about cornerstones and the concept of having a flagship boxer—a stalwart. Peltz Promotions was built on the solid, rock hard foundation of Philly legend and the “policeman of the middleweight division,” “Bad” Bennie Briscoe. Briscoe wreaked havoc for almost three decades literally leaving a pile of bodies and broken bones in the squared circle. Thus, tonight he sat at ringside with the introspective look of a doting father next to Rogers as Robinson entered the ring, his third fight under the BAM banner, to face Cauthen (36 wins – 7 losses – 0 draws – 9 kos) of Trenton, New Jersey.

Boxing will swallow you and spit you out. And invariably her trusty enforcer, Father Time, will creep up on an old suitor, steal his reflexes and desire to wage war, reducing him to a mirage of his glory days. Then, her new paramour Youth in the personification of an upcoming pugilist will enter the ring in glorious fashion, like the Dark Knight riding into Gotham City, and finish the job. It is a painful but an inevitable process unless a fighter and his handlers can see the warning signs, sever ties and retire before Father Time reduces him to a shell of his former self. Cauthen had not fought in over 15-months and won only four of his last eight fights dating back to December 5, 2007 when he lost by a fourth round technical knockout to Sechew Powell.

Robinson walking away from a fallen Cauthen—it’s over.

If you know anything about boxing you can tell that Cauthen’s reflexes have slowed considerably.  I doubt if his brain trust insisted that he hang up the gloves. Only race horses are treated worse than professional fighters. Boxers are pushed until they are physically unable to compete. At least a champion race horse, unable to compete, enjoys his twilight years on a stud farm. There are no such partying perks or severance package for decorated fighters who are left to fend for themselves after being rendered hapless on the canvas, forced into retirement.

Cauthen, like the ageless wonder, Bernard Hopkins, knows every trick in the book to disrupt, dissuade and discombobulate younger pugilists while avoiding punishment. I was in the corner of Philip “The Mongoose” McCants on January 21, 2011, Cauthen’s last bout. No surprise when the cagey, wily veteran crowded McCants— not permitting him to gain separation and land anything of consequence—winning a unanimous eight-round decision.

This battle of southpaws didn’t last long as Robinson kept his distance in the opening round of the scheduled 10-rounder working behind a long, stiff jab.  He didn’t allow the “safety first” Cauthen to get too close and turn it into an ugly fight wrought with much holding and hitting as is customarily the script for the Trenton native. In the second round after being hit on the break, Robinson retaliated and struck Cauthen.  Realizing that referee Rosato was about to penalize Robinson for the infraction Cauthen fell to the ground writhing in pain showing his thespian abilities.  It was an Oscar winning performance rivaling that of Bernard Hopkins’ in his first encounter with Chad Dawson.  Rosato wasn’t buying it, neither was the audience as they yelled in unison for him to get up.  Robinson was penalized a point and Cauthen abandoned the theatrics and the fight resumed. Shortly thereafter, he delivered a combination that partially landed on Cauthen’s chin and torso sending him to the canvas momentarily. Cauthen was up before the referee reached the count of three. However, like a shark tasting blood in the water, Robinson attacked with precision and bounced a devastating right hook followed by a straight left that found their mark high on the Bronze medalist’s head sending him pitching sideways into the ropes as Rosato rushed in to count but instead called a halt. The bout was over at 2:06 of the second round as Robinson jumped in jubilation.

Lightweight Tevin “The American Idol” Farmer (4 wins – 3 losses – 1 draw – 1 ko) and manager Jane Scholl share and breathe the same air of humble confidence.  Farmer is the quintessential Philly fighter who at a moment’s notice is willing and ready to fight anyone, anywhere, any time! The kid is fearless and is fueled by a desire to be great. I watched ringside in early March as the southpaw sparred with lightweight contender Hammerin’ Hank Lundy at Marion Anderson Recreation Center in South Philadelphia. Farmer held his own as he engaged Lundy in a sparring chess match. Ironically, the 21-year-old pugilist plays chess regularly and told me that he was a chess master. Scholl discovered Farmer as an amateur and was immediately impressed by his relentlessness and pugilistic prowess. Her belief in her fighter rivals that of Rogers’ confidence in Robinson.

Farmer (L.) attacking Cooley.

Farmer faced former Philadelphia amateur standout Kareem “Cool Breeze” Cooley (2 wins – 1 loss – 0 draws – 1 ko) in a scheduled six-rounder.  He took advantage of the 27-year-old Cooley’s 19-month layoff and jumped on him from the opening bell. Using his athletic abilities, boxing skills, and angles Farmer consistently beat Cooley—who seemed unsure making plenty of arm motions but not pulling the trigger—to the punch. Sporting a beard, looking like Uncle Remus, Cooley’s body language belied his age as he seem to suddenly grow old in front of our eyes. Round-after-round Farmer outworked his opponent who came forward but not firing. Cooley never had the opportunity to shed the ring rust from his long hiatus as Farmer kept his foot on the gas pedal closing the final round with a devastating overhand right taking an impressive unanimous decision by scores of 59-55 twice and 58-56.

Other Results: In a scheduled six-rounder junior-middleweight Lenwood “Mr. Composure” Dozier (7 wins – 4 losses – 1 draw – 3 kos) of Glen Burnie, Maryland frustrated his opponent Decarlo Perez (6 wins – 2 losses – 1 draw – 2 kos) of Atlantic City, New Jersey and the audience with his evasive skills. However, someone forgot to remind Dozier that his defensive wizardry isn’t enough to win a fight—one has to throw punches. Dozier shoulder-rolled, ducked, parried, side-stepped like a matador evading punches disappearing like a gloved Harry Houdini throwing the occasional jab as Perez, despite appearing to be outclassed, piled up points by being aggressive bringing the fight to his opponent. No surprise that Perez captured a unanimous decision by scores of 60-54 and 59-55 twice.

Dozier (R.) being the matador.

In a scheduled four-rounder debuting Philadelphia junior-welterweight Hasan Young was impressive in dominating winless Cassius Clay (0 wins – 2 losses – 0 draws) of Las Vegas, Nevada. This was a mismatch as Young piled on the punishment dropping Clay in the third stanza. The fight should have been over but for some inexplicable reason the outclassed fighter refused to wave the white flag of surrender and hobbled to the end of the fight. Young won convincingly by scores of 40-33 and 40-34 twice and has a bright future. In the opening bout featuring debuting fighters, 37-year-old Philly junior-middleweight Ben “Got To” Lovett outworked and outhustled Oscar Pagan of Camden, New Jersey for four action-packed rounds winning a unanimous decision by scores of 40-36, 39-37 with the last judge scoring it 38-38.

It was another exciting night of the sweet science as the audience along with my cousin Steven Walkin, visiting from the Turk & Caicos, enjoyed the action. I took no pleasure in seeing Terrance Cauthen down on the canvas, the ringside doctor checking his vitals. After all he is an Olympic bronze medalist and it is somewhat difficult to accept that this is how his story ends. I am sure that Cauthen is familiar with this age-old rite of passage. He was once a young lion who slayed many old warriors. It’s just the nature of the business.

Bob Marley was treated as a pariah by his father’s family, but became an international icon. His message of peace, love and harmony continues to reverberate throughout the world. Several statues have been erected in his honor.  I won’t be surprised if like Marley, Ray Robinson’s setbacks fuel his ride to stardom. As he told me, “Things happen for a reason. We have started a new life. Brittany and I are both hungry.”

The stone that the builder refuses will always be the head cornerstone.

Continue to support the sweet science, and remember, always carry your mouthpiece!

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About George Hanson., Jr Esq.

George Hanson., Jr Esq. has written 106 post in this blog.

Hailing from New Forest, Jamaica, Hanson started boxing as a teenager in Philadelphia under the tutelage of former welterweight contender, Dick Turner. He excelled, capturing four Pennsylvania State Amateur Championships—his last while a junior at Drexel University studying Accounting. According to most who have seen Hanson fight, “He is the best fighter never to have turned professional.”



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