Boxing on Beale

I got a real treat Tuesday night. I was sitting in Empire Coffee when retired boxer Bruce “Double Trouble” Card (“bad man…pretty as a girl”) came in. Bruce is also a regular at the coffee shop. He asked if I wanted to go to pro boxing at the New Daisy as his guest. There are boxing matches at the Daisy the first Tuesday of every month. I had never seen boxing live, and I figured there would be no better way to see it than sitting next to a retired boxer. So we headed down there and got seats in the front row of the balcony.

There was a kid, probably still in high school, in his first match ever in the opening bout. “His opponent could probably knock him out in 30 seconds,” explained Bruce, “but the promoter told him to put on a show for the fans.” The kid had a lot of heart and kept going well into the third round, when the ref stopped it and gave it to his opponent by TKO. The fans applauded the kid for a good first outing.

The mid-card bouts saw some guys really going after each other with all they had. I can’t believe we didn’t see a single knockout. One was a TKO, the others went the distance and were decided by the judges.

The loudest applause came during the next-to-last match, when the ring girl came out of her top as she bent over to get through the ropes.

The main event was a disaster. It was a title match, for a federation’s cruiserweight title. The champion was having all kinds of equipment problems. The ref had to temporarily halt the match three times – twice because he lost his mouthpiece, and once because his gloves came off. How did this guy get to be champion? The crowd was booing unmercifully and chanting “this match sucks.” Finally, in the 7th round the challenger got the better of him and the ref stopped the match. The champion protested to the ref. It was a display worthy of Tonya Harding. “Worst main event ever,” commented Bruce.

The mid-card bouts made up for it though. Definitely an experience worth repeating.