Incessant talk about Lewis' "heart"

Incessant talk about Lewis' "heart"

Post by Colin Bake » Thu, 11 Mar 1999 04:00:00


The sportscasters and print journalists have been yapping nonstop about
Lewis' "heart" or apparent lack of it in their view.  I'm wondering what
effect this will have on him, because its something that he clearly is
sensitive about.  Even Emanuel Steward refers to Lewis' need to get over his
"hesitancy."

To my mind, this could one of two effects:
(1)  It fuels his determination to prove everyone wrong, and makes him that
much more willing and able to go to the well, or
(2)  It serves as an added source of anxiety, and will make him panic that
much more when he gets hit (as in the Briggs fight).

I'm not sure I know which of these is more on-target.

 
 
 

Incessant talk about Lewis' "heart"

Post by Ivan Weis » Thu, 11 Mar 1999 04:00:00


Quote:
> The sportscasters and print journalists have been yapping nonstop about
> Lewis' "heart" or apparent lack of it in their view.  I'm wondering what
> effect this will have on him, because its something that he clearly is
> sensitive about.  Even Emanuel Steward refers to Lewis' need to get over his
> "hesitancy."

> To my mind, this could one of two effects:
> (1)  It fuels his determination to prove everyone wrong, and makes him that
> much more willing and able to go to the well, or
> (2)  It serves as an added source of anxiety, and will make him panic that
> much more when he gets hit (as in the Briggs fight).

> I'm not sure I know which of these is more on-target.

IMO, FWIW, it's irrelevant. I have no doubt that Lewis is fueled by an
intense desire to win. I have no doubt that he has a lot of courage. I
don't think he'll beat Holyfield, but I have no basis to question his
manhood or his desire to win.

But from past performance, I just don't think he knows what to do when he
is faced with something he hasn't seen before. Examples: McCall 1, McCall
2, Akinwande, Briggs. Sure, he recovered and won all those fights except
McCall 1. But in each of these fights, his opponents allowed him to. I do
not think Holyfield will give him such a chance. Lewis *appears* to have
too steep a learning curve.

Fighting for the undisputed heavyweight championship of the world is no
place to have a steep learning curve. That's why I like Holyfield in this
fight. If Holyfield winks out and walks into a Lewis haymaker, Lewis could
be the undisputed heavyweight champion of the world and be just as
clueless as he has always been IMO. But no one, of course, would believe
me if I said so.

Ivan Weiss    FAITH, n. Belief without evidence in what is told by one
Vashon WA     who speaks without knowledge, of things without parallel.
              -- Ambrose Bierce: The Devil's Dictionary

 
 
 

Incessant talk about Lewis' "heart"

Post by Bria » Thu, 11 Mar 1999 04:00:00

Quote:

>Definitely true.  A one-punch KO would give him the title, but it
>certainly wouldn't change a lot of minds about his overall ability.

The thing is he could win in almost any fashion -- quick awesome KO, long tough
TKO, dominating decision, come from behind rally -- there will *always* be
people some people going around doubting and making up BS.

 
 
 

Incessant talk about Lewis' "heart"

Post by Patrick Keho » Thu, 11 Mar 1999 04:00:00

Quote:

> On Wed, 10 Mar 1999 16:28:20 -0800, Ivan Weiss

> >Fighting for the undisputed heavyweight championship of the world is no
> >place to have a steep learning curve. That's why I like Holyfield in this
> >fight. If Holyfield winks out and walks into a Lewis haymaker, Lewis could
> >be the undisputed heavyweight champion of the world and be just as
> >clueless as he has always been IMO. But no one, of course, would believe
> >me if I said so.

> Definitely true.  A one-punch KO would give him the title, but it
> certainly wouldn't change a lot of minds about his overall ability.
> He needs to be able to do all the things Steward says he can do, and
> he has to have an effective jab.  We must see an appetizer before we
> get to the main course.  I still think he has to do it early, or else
> he's in big trouble.  Holyfield practically owns the later rounds when
> everything is on the line.  That's why I give him a decision if he
> doesn't get KO'd by round 7.

> Todd

  Todd,
That is well put... but thee 2 mitigating factors (or at least
potientially mitigating factors) for Evander is yes... the age thing
question especially in relation to his current ability to absorb a big
mans punch for a sustained period... I have this strange feeling BOTH
guys are going to tire early in this one... the sheer grandeur of the
occassion will be trying (depleating), they are both in their 30's and I
think each guy will be trying to take the edge off the other... Lewis
will try to make Evander work for every position, making him use those
36 year old legs to get into position... he'll be leaning on him and
grabbing him in tight as often as possible... and Evander will be trying
to make Lewis miss and get to the body with hard counters up and down
early in the fight... Evander will also want to make Lewis move as much
as possible knowing that Lennox is not half the puncher when he has to
constantly reposition himself... distance will be key BUT GETTING INTO
POSITION will be the essence of the fight, IMO... and it will take a lot
of energy to hit those big counters and not be there when the other guy
returns in kind... that's why THE BIG SHOT which will be a counter shot
might determine this fight... and it will most likely happen when each
guy has burned off that initial rush of early energy... also it will be
interesting to see who gets tired first and who gets his second wind
earliest... Lennox was smart doing interval training on the track for
this one... because he knows Evander fights in 3 or 4 flurries per round
TYPICALLY now... and he'll be trying to time those offensive rushes with
something big... Evander will be trying to vary his pattern and be busy
to keep Lennox thinking and not punching or loading up as he moves into
his offensive positions... IT will be interesting to see who loses that
defensive edge first, who gets sloppy first...

Patrick Kehoe

 
 
 

Incessant talk about Lewis' "heart"

Post by Tod » Fri, 12 Mar 1999 04:00:00

On Wed, 10 Mar 1999 16:28:20 -0800, Ivan Weiss

Quote:
>Fighting for the undisputed heavyweight championship of the world is no
>place to have a steep learning curve. That's why I like Holyfield in this
>fight. If Holyfield winks out and walks into a Lewis haymaker, Lewis could
>be the undisputed heavyweight champion of the world and be just as
>clueless as he has always been IMO. But no one, of course, would believe
>me if I said so.

Definitely true.  A one-punch KO would give him the title, but it
certainly wouldn't change a lot of minds about his overall ability.
He needs to be able to do all the things Steward says he can do, and
he has to have an effective jab.  We must see an appetizer before we
get to the main course.  I still think he has to do it early, or else
he's in big trouble.  Holyfield practically owns the later rounds when
everything is on the line.  That's why I give him a decision if he
doesn't get KO'd by round 7.

Todd

 
 
 

Incessant talk about Lewis' "heart"

Post by Mike Haug » Fri, 12 Mar 1999 04:00:00

On Wed, 10 Mar 1999 16:28:20 -0800, Ivan Weiss
<snip>

Quote:
>Fighting for the undisputed heavyweight championship of the world is no
>place to have a steep learning curve. That's why I like Holyfield in this
>fight. If Holyfield winks out and walks into a Lewis haymaker, Lewis could
>be the undisputed heavyweight champion of the world and be just as
>clueless as he has always been IMO. But no one, of course, would believe
>me if I said so.

>Ivan Weiss    FAITH, n. Belief without evidence in what is told by one
>Vashon WA     who speaks without knowledge, of things without parallel.
>              -- Ambrose Bierce: The Devil's Dictionary

Renaldo Snipes was two seconds from being the HW champ.  I believe you
Ivan!!

        -mwh

 
 
 

Incessant talk about Lewis' "heart"

Post by 'Dashing' Nick La Ros » Fri, 12 Mar 1999 04:00:00

I understand what you are saying Ivan. Lennox does have quite a number of
deficiencies. What you are looking for when you and other analysts say 'steep
learning curve' is Lennox becoming a smoother boxer, better balance, better in
close, dominating jab and so on. *However*, (and this is why I prefered Lewis
over Bowe in opposition to other trainers opinions at the time) Lennox is
*effective* and *dangerous* enough with what he does do. Being such a big man
may well mean that he will continue to be as clumsy as others his size tend to
be, it is also a reason why he uses the reach which is his advanatage and
avoids those in close situations (how many people will he fight that are
taller?). As a trainer, if I had been training Bowe and Tyson I would have
done the same thing their management did and avoid him unless the money was
REALLY right. I think too many people in here have (and other places) been
focusing too much on what Lewis does badly. What about what he does well?
Styles make fights and this fight is the classic tall man against the small
man and the key will be who can control the distance.

Nick

Quote:

> On Wed, 10 Mar 1999 16:28:20 -0800, Ivan Weiss

> <snip>
> >Fighting for the undisputed heavyweight championship of the world is no
> >place to have a steep learning curve. That's why I like Holyfield in this
> >fight. If Holyfield winks out and walks into a Lewis haymaker, Lewis could
> >be the undisputed heavyweight champion of the world and be just as
> >clueless as he has always been IMO. But no one, of course, would believe
> >me if I said so.

> >Ivan Weiss    FAITH, n. Belief without evidence in what is told by one
> >Vashon WA     who speaks without knowledge, of things without parallel.
> >              -- Ambrose Bierce: The Devil's Dictionary

> Renaldo Snipes was two seconds from being the HW champ.  I believe you
> Ivan!!

>         -mwh

 
 
 

Incessant talk about Lewis' "heart"

Post by i cheehuahu » Fri, 12 Mar 1999 04:00:00

Quote:

> The thing is he could win in almost any fashion -- quick awesome KO, long tough
> TKO, dominating decision, come from behind rally -- there will *always* be
> people some people going around doubting and making up BS.

Some people will always be blind if thats what they want to be.
Majority of boxing fans go by what the main stream is.  I have no doubt
that Lewis's skill will prevail.  Even if he wins with his power shot,
he still needs skill to land it.  The excuses are already pouring in
that even if Lewis wins it won't change anything.  People are really
clueless when it comes to Lewis.  Lewis is waaaaaaayyyyyyyyy to strong
for Holyfield.  Alot of the bad press Lewis gets is from prejudice
American writers.  Lewis will dominate Holyfield from the get go.  It
will be a quick fight.  Holyfield won't be able to stand up to the power
of Lewis.

Lewis within 2 rounds...and if not, Lewis still wins.
i cheehuahua

 
 
 

Incessant talk about Lewis' "heart"

Post by Pabl » Fri, 12 Mar 1999 04:00:00

Some good thread going on here between Ivan, Nick and Mike.

No doubt about it, Lewis has deficiencies. Then again, no one has
claimed he's Ali's second coming, or that he'll be a champion for long,
for that matter. i think Lewis is the type of person that will be
totally up and at his best for this challenge, and then will have a hell
of a hard time to motivate himself to stay at his peak. he was like that
when he won his first belt, and while I can't creep into his head, I
sense that's what will happen again.

But if we're talking about Lewis deficiencies, in all fairness it ought
to be stated that it's not like Hoylfield has looked like a million
dollars in every of his outings himself. For every fight where Lewis was
shaken early, there's Holyfield being rocked to his toes by Cooper, for
every McCall I there's a Bowe III, for every uninspired performance by
Lewis there's a Bean, Moorer or Czyz performance by Holyfield.

Holyfield looked awesome against Tyson, but that was the Tyson that
Botha was taunting for 5 rounds before becoming a victim of his own
***iness. Holyfield also looked distinctly shaken and fading a few
times in his performances against Tyson. He was soundly outboxed by
Moorer, and got his knees buckled even in his winning fight against
Moorer. He looked plain shot against Czyz, he got resoundingly beaten in
his third fight against Bowe... the same Bowe that looked ordinary
against Golota, who in turn was easily disposed of by Lewis. Holyfield
has caused e***ment, but in part that has been because he's looked so
beatable at times. And at times he's caved in and fallen far deeper than
Lewis ever did. Lewis at times looked poor, but he always had power to
carry him through in the end.

The McCall I fight? He got caught by a monster punch, no disgrace in
that. McCall looked really fired up that night, and I must wonder
whether Holyfield would have beaten a McCall that was as sharply and
maniacally focussed. The shaky start against Briggs? Who punches harder,
Moorer or Briggs, gentlemen? Briggs was fired up for that fight, and for
once came out fighting real well. I think Briggs that night was a
superior foe than Moorer, who -in their second fight- hurt Holyfield and
went with him toe to toe. Neither a testament to Holyfield's punching
power nor to his allegedly far superior chin.

Facts in hand, both fighters have only been knocked out once. And rocked
a few times. Nothing there indicates Holyfield's heart is larger. Lewis'
fights have been usually shorter and more one-sided in the end, and
lewis hasn't taken half the punishment Holyfield has taken.

Against Mercer, Holyfield did not look that superior.

What is worse, if there is one punch Holyfield has always looked likely
to get hit with, it is a right hand. Which is very bad news against
Lewis.

Holyfield's claim about a third round knockout can only be a head game.
Holyfield, in the past, has been a far better student of his
adversaries' weaknesses, and he must know that that the only guys who
made Lewis look bad were the ones that devised strategies to neutralize
Lewis right hand. He ought to take a look at what Mercer did. The
question is whether Holyfield has Mercer's chin. Evander has got to
fight with a hell of a lot of mobility - and when he did that in the
second Bowe fight, he never looked like knocking Bowe out. Or Foreman.
Think about fights where Holyfield has fought taller fighters - he never
knocked 'em out. His style isn't made for it.

Lewis has always been at his sharpest under pressure and with a mountain
to climb. Lewis showed durability and heart in his fight against Mercer.
I don't think Holyfield can count on being lucky enough to land the
perfect knockout punch, with closed eyes, a la McCall. Don't forget,
that is the only fight Lewis ever lost. Even though I think he only
ought to have gotten a draw against Mercer.

Holyfield might try to continuously crowd Lewis, taking things to the
infight - a strategy he has consistently stuck to in his last bouts. He
hasn't look like in the Bowe 2 fight ever since then. If he does that
like he did against Tyson or Bean, with no adjustment, he'll take far
too much punishment on the way in, plus Lewis is decently effective at
dictating the distance of a fight. Holyfield find it troublesome to deal
with a good jab - Moorer's key factor to effectiveness against
Holyfield. So you *know* Lewis' jab will be ready. It better be. And you
know Lewis will not allow the infights to go on for long. He'll fight
holyfield like he did Butler. Butler had a style similar to what
Holyfield has tended to do of late, and he looked utterly chance less
against Lewis. Holyfield has the potential to offer far more movement
than Butler.

I just think Holyfield has to implement a far narrower set of strategies
to win the fight. He *must* be very disciplined to capitalize on his
advantages given the two fighters' styles, and yet he's shown a
pre-disposition to throw strategy aside and try to engage in war every
time as of late. Lewis', on the other hand, had the advantage in the
distance both with jab and cross, both punches Holyfield is susceptible
for, and has the size to tire Holyfield in the infighting and drain the
latter's power.

I am pretty convinced that Lewis will win very decisively and make it
look easier than most people anticipated, and then of course, once more,
he won't get much credit, for the word will be how Holyfield just had
gotten too old and maybe was distracted etc. Wrong. I think it's a bad
styles matchup for Holyfield. I said the same before Morrison fought
Lewis. Their styles didn't match up well, Morrison's strengths played
right into Lewis'. The Holyfield I've seen in the last 3 years was an
awesome match for Tyson, but  think he just doesn't have the tools
anymore to overcome the challenge of Lewis. he needs a far more complete
tool set than he's displayed in a while, and at 36 I doubt he can pull
the rabbit out of the magician's head again.

...pablo

 
 
 

Incessant talk about Lewis' "heart"

Post by Tod » Sat, 13 Mar 1999 04:00:00


Quote:

>>Definitely true.  A one-punch KO would give him the title, but it
>>certainly wouldn't change a lot of minds about his overall ability.

>The thing is he could win in almost any fashion -- quick awesome KO, long tough
>TKO, dominating decision, come from behind rally -- there will *always* be
>people some people going around doubting and making up BS.

Certainly.  I am actually rooting for him to win, but I want him to do
it in a convincing fashion.  For example, I'd hate to see him get
jabbed all over the ring the way Tyson was with Botha, then land the
lucky punch that ends the fight.  Tyson certainly didn't change any
minds with that performance, nor would Lewis.  That said, I'm hoping
he does well.

Todd

 
 
 

Incessant talk about Lewis' "heart"

Post by CBolloc » Sat, 13 Mar 1999 04:00:00

Quote:
>No doubt about it, Lewis has deficiencies. Then again, no one has
>claimed he's Ali's second coming

Talked to Chee lately?
 
 
 

Incessant talk about Lewis' "heart"

Post by Johnbo » Sat, 13 Mar 1999 04:00:00

Quote:

> Renaldo Snipes was two seconds from being the HW champ.  I believe you
> Ivan!!

>         -mwh

So was Bert Cooper. In both cases, it was how Holmes and Holyfield
responded unflinchingly to desperate situations that kept them afloat.

Johnboy

 
 
 

Incessant talk about Lewis' "heart"

Post by Michael W Haug » Sat, 13 Mar 1999 04:00:00

: > Renaldo Snipes was two seconds from being the HW champ.  I believe you
: > Ivan!!
: >
: >         -mwh

: So was Bert Cooper. In both cases, it was how Holmes and Holyfield
: responded unflinchingly to desperate situations that kept them afloat.
: Johnboy

I would never argue that point at all.  (Actually, Snipes had Holmes so
close to gone that a love tap could have ended it for a split second.  He
was much more hurt than Holyfield vs. Cooper).  
I took Ivan's point as being, anybody is one punch away from being the
champ in a HW title fight.  

Agreed that Holmes and Holyfield have responded splendidly when called to
in dire circumstances.
--
        -mwh

 
 
 

Incessant talk about Lewis' "heart"

Post by pa.. » Sat, 13 Mar 1999 04:00:00



Quote:
> Agreed that Holmes and Holyfield have responded splendidly when called to
> in dire circumstances.

Like against Bowe in fights 1 and 3 or against Moorer in their first fight?
No doubt Holyfield has a lot of heart, but here's been real and repeated
instances where his heart didn't carry him through. I'll grant his
performances against Tyson were both exciting and inspiring, but people seem
to forget these days that holyfield has looked very ordinary at times. Some
of the wars that tested his heart were against fighters he ought to have
dominated convincingly without ever having to dig down deeply.

That is why, when Holyfield says in ESPN.COm's chat wrap "If they are basing
the [all time] ratings by competition and what they [Ali, Louis, Holmes] have
done at certain points in their life, I think my stats match up." I take
issue. Hell, they don't. That is arrogance and complacency showing through,
and I think they spell disaster for Holyfield.

Holyfield has been an overachiever. That makes his story inspiring (despite
all the ***behind the scenes), but it seems that now quite a few aspects of
the dignified public persona he used to be are falling off, and something
else is coming through. I've never been one to care about public debates on
personality or family values, but I've never liked people that tout their own
horn, and always liked the fact Holyfield didn't. He's joined the chorus of
pretentious "I am the greatest yadda-dadda" self-glorifying ***s with his
comments in the chat wrap, though.

I always used to root for him given his countenance and restraint in making
such comments. He's lost that aura, though. And, as he is religious, he
should do his Bible reading. I am no Bible expert, but as a kid, I was once
made to write a hundred times Book of Proverbs 3:34 "He mocks the arrogant
but gives grace to the humble." Don't ask me why. :-)

...pablo

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Incessant talk about Lewis' "heart"

Post by Mike Haug » Sun, 14 Mar 1999 04:00:00

Quote:



>> Agreed that Holmes and Holyfield have responded splendidly when called to
>> in dire circumstances.

>Like against Bowe in fights 1 and 3 or against Moorer in their first fight?

I said "have responded splendidly" not always responded splendidly.

Bowe 1: Holyfield just lost a tough one in the best HW bout of the
decade.

Bowe 3 and Moorer 1:  Holyfield looked wasted .  I don't know what was
up with that, but I suspected something funny in his training routine.
My hunch was steroids, but that was only a hunch.

Quote:
>No doubt Holyfield has a lot of heart, but here's been real and repeated
>instances where his heart didn't carry him through. I'll grant his
>performances against Tyson were both exciting and inspiring, but people seem
>to forget these days that holyfield has looked very ordinary at times.

No, I haven't  forgotten those lackluster efforts.  That is why I have
always felt Lewis had a shot at winning this fight.

Quote:
> Some
>of the wars that tested his heart were against fighters he ought to have
>dominated convincingly without ever having to dig down deeply.

If you're going back to the Stewart, Cooper, Foreman and Holmes bouts,
you're right.  Holyfield did not fight smart fights in any of them.

Quote:
>That is why, when Holyfield says in ESPN.COm's chat wrap "If they are basing
>the [all time] ratings by competition and what they [Ali, Louis, Holmes] have
>done at certain points in their life, I think my stats match up." I take
>issue. Hell, they don't. That is arrogance and complacency showing through,
>and I think they spell disaster for Holyfield.

I don't know about spelling disaster for Holyfield.  I don't believe
he rates with Ali, Louis or Holmes.  Or even close to those.

Quote:
>Holyfield has been an overachiever. That makes his story inspiring (despite
>all the ***behind the scenes), but it seems that now quite a few aspects of
>the dignified public persona he used to be are falling off, and something
>else is coming through. I've never been one to care about public debates on
>personality or family values, but I've never liked people that tout their own
>horn, and always liked the fact Holyfield didn't. He's joined the chorus of
>pretentious "I am the greatest yadda-dadda" self-glorifying ***s with his
>comments in the chat wrap, though.

Can't disagree.  I feel the same way.  

Somehow I found Holyfield's bearing a little more annoying when he
first moved up to HW.  I thought he was trying to pull off a cheap
Sonny Liston impression with the practiced camera stare, etc.

Quote:
>I always used to root for him given his countenance and restraint in making
>such comments. He's lost that aura, though. And, as he is religious, he
>should do his Bible reading. I am no Bible expert, but as a kid, I was once
>made to write a hundred times Book of Proverbs 3:34 "He mocks the arrogant
>but gives grace to the humble." Don't ask me why. :-)

>...pablo

Good scripture for each of us to keep in our heart.  And I'll let you
have a pass on why you had to write that 100 times.  ;-)

I am not picking Holyfield or rooting for him in this fight because of
what he says or does outside of the ring.  I just like him a little
better than Lewis.  I also have a thing about guys perform below their
abilities and whine vs. those who perform above expectations.

I have always thought of Holyfield's confidence and will as very deep
and pretty reliable.  I have always seen Lewis' confidence and will as
a mile wide and an inch deep.  If confidence and will are the
determining factors, Holyfield wins it.

        -mwh

Quote:
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