Convicted Artist Magazine

Sep 23rd
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Home Boxing Famous Floppers
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Famous Floppers

boxing_glovesLet’s take a look at some of the luckiest fighters in boxing, who have ridden fouls and acting skills to successes that their talents could not achieve.
Rodel Mayol - He is the luckiest currently.  It’s one thing to have a propensity for head clashes, but when they always seem to be saving you from defeat at the hands of a superior opponent, it is cause for further examination.  Mayol is clearly the inferior to Ivan Calderon, Edgar Sosa, and Omar Nino.  However, the Filipino contender was able to avoid defeat, capture a title, and defend it with a poker-like brilliance in playing the officials. 
First he knocks out Sosa with a follow up barrage after a head-butt clearly affected the champion.  Then, he turns to complain after a low shot from Nino.  Not only was his level of affect in question, but since when is turning to the referee a safe zone? 
Just ask Jack Sharkey (against Jack Dempsey), or Alejandro Garcia (against Travis Simms) if turning your head to complain erases the knockout punch that follows.  Mayol has ridden his luck train far, but no one has gotten any farther than this.  He is likely at the end of the line.  A couple of others have ridden it in similar fashion, however, and let us remember them briefly.
Luis Santana – Mexico has seen it’s share of this trend lately with Mayol, however this country first saw the flopping dynamo in Luis Santana, when the Domincan challenger was able to wrest the WBC Junior Middleweight title from Terry Norris in Mexico City in 1994.  Santana turned his back in round five, and was lightly slapped with a left on the back of the head.  Clearly a foul, from a champion who was prone to them, but the overacting that followed was amazing.  Santa fell to the ground, and refused to rise, even leaving the ring on a stretcher.  He was awarded the title, but was forced to give Norris a rematch.  At the end of round three of that rematch, Santana took advantage of a barely audible bell, in order to trick Norris into hitting him well after it.  This was a solid punch, but nothing devastating.  Santana fell, refused to get up, and had to be taken out on a stretcher yet again.  The two finally settled things, when an angry Norris KO’d Santana in round two of their third match in August of 1995, but an ordinary journeyman had risen to three championship paydays from his acting skills.  Impressive.
Massimiliano Duran – It is true that Italians are famous floppers culture-wide in sports.  In soccer, however, this is trained into them as a part of the game in order to win penalty points.  Many other cultures employ it.  Italy seems to be one of the few countries where it has translated to boxing, however, which is supposed to be a manlier sport.  From Vincenzo “Chicken” Cantatore trying desperately to win via disqualification against Wayne Braithwaite, to Vincenzo Nardiello’s constant complaining of fouls, the art was never taken to such heights as one tall, very ordinary cruiserweight.
Duran lucked his way into a WBC title shot against four-time champion Carlos DeLeon in 1990, with a DQ win in seven rounds.  He managed to not only also win the title from DeLeon via 11th round DQ, but he even won his first defense via disqualification in the final round.  His opponent, Anaclet Wamba, was ridiculously over-penalized all night for non-existent head-butts, before the DQ.  Fortunately, Duran would later lose his title to Wamba, as well as the rubber match, both by late-round KO’s.  That's four world title fights, with a 2-2 record, for someone who never scored a legitimate win over a contender or champion.  Duran was a big lesson in two disturbing facts: Clever acting can go a long way, and not everyone named Duran is tough.
Chris Strait

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