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Jorge's Corner
The Voice of Boxing in Central and Northern California


Mississippi Coast Coliseum

Biloxi, Mississippi - August 23, 2003
Ann Wolfe vs. Valerie Mahfood

The idea of heading south brought back memories--getting beat down by 200 pound high school junior Nazis, racist cops and ignorant teachers.  It brought back memories of Tuloso-Midway High School in Corpus Christi, Texas and all those hypocrites who call themselves Christians. Phony baloney cheerleaders, brown nosing jock wannabes and the horrible reality of growing up in a segregated southern town.  On top of the oppressive social environment one also had to deal with the humidity and heat.  I am still amazed I survived. It brought back memories of Coach Washington, the football coach who would not let me play even though I never missed a practice and worked like a dog while I was there. Instead he would play all the white boys whose daddies blew smoke up his whazoo. It did not matter that the cream puff, milk-fed bastards had not come to practice all week. He is the reason why I quit playing football, bastard.  Why taking a pounding all week during practice, then not be allowed to play during the upcoming game.  I also remember Assistant Principal Reese (Wimpy) who told me to quit school and get a job because he did not think I was college material. I never forgot. I hope all these bastards burn in hell.  Thank God for giving me the necessary grit to break free and escape their hatred.   Looking back, I know you cannot blame a rabid dog for attacking you; after all, the ignorant beast is sick. I left Tuloso-Midway High School, Corpus Christi, and Texas and never looked back.  The only teacher who ever gave a damn about me was Mrs. Barbara Davis, the reason why I love history today, and why I continue to take postgraduate college classes. I swore I would not raise my children under a social system that co-signed racist behavior by the alleged crème de la crème of society. The trouble with growing up in a racist society is that teachers perpetuate the very racism education is suppose to help prevent.  They, the teachers convey via their actions, that its ok to discriminate on the bases of color, they did it all the time, in front of everyone, and no one thought there was anything wrong with it. They knew they could get away with it.  Gutless bastards.  I cannot think of any reason why any person would support or defend any group or organization that practiced and implemented racist policies designed to humiliate and rob innocent children of self-esteem, pride in their culture, language and contributions made to the development of this country. The Texas education system taught lies and half-truths concerning historical facts, such as occurred during the Battle of the Alamo, which was the battle cry of those Nazi bastards that beat me down.   In my opinion, those folks are due for some payback of Biblical proportions.

With great reluctance I headed to Biloxi, Mississippi to watch the greatest boxing event in the history of womenıs boxing.  Before the main event I watched my old friend Ann (Brown Sugar) Wolfe, who I got to know at the Womenıs National Championships, face her arch arrival Valerie (The Wolf) Mahfood--the only woman who had ever beat her.  Ann Wolfe, a female version of a Rocky story, is in my opinion the heart and soul of boxing. You name it and Ann has had to endure it.  Every obstacle and adversity imaginable has knocked on Annıs door. I am proud to call her a friend. Valerie Mahfood, a prison guard in Beaumont, Texas is a no-nonsense seasoned veteran. Twenty-nine years old, she came in with 13 wins, six losses, with seven knockouts; coming off three straight losses--two to Laila Ali.  Ann Wolfe, 32 years old, she came in with 14 wins, one draw, with eleven knockouts. She is trained by Don Billingstag.  Paul Sita worked as referee. The bout was scheduled for ten rounds. Both fighters weighing 164 pounds.

Mahfood looked like some one not to mess with. She had purple hair and wore black trunks. Ann Wolfe wore her hair braided, and wore black trunks. I knew Ann was going to come out smoking and I was not disappointed. I was surprised that Mahfood came in with so much confidence.  However, Ann quickly nailed her with a beautiful right cross that knocked Mahfoodıs head back. Mahfood showed no color and continued to press Ann who then nailed her again with a right upper cut. Ann used a beautiful jab that kept Mahfood at a distance. The second round proved Mahfood had a good chin because Ann nailed her with a clean shot which almost took her head off.  Mahfood continued to pressure Ann who caught her with nice body shots, looping right hands and upper cuts. Mahfood started bleeding from the nose. Ann seemed very relaxed and confident. She continued to score easily with right and left shots. Towards the end of the round Mahfood pushed Ann against the ropes and worked inside until the bell rang. The third round began, Ann pressuring with left jabs, right hands, setting up the upper cut. Mahfood jabbed at the stomach, trying to get Ann to drop to drop her right. Mahfood then nailed Ann with a left hook and right cross. Mahfood slipped several punches then got nailed with a clubbing  right that began a series of counter-punches by Mahfood that proved she was game. The fourth round began with Ann throwing looping right hands, looking relaxed and confident. Mahfoodıs strategy became clear, hoping Ann would tire herself out. Sure as God made little green apples, Mahfood shoved Ann against the ropes and unleashed a series of punches that had Ann staggering. Showing fatigue, Ann somehow managed to finish strong.  I made that round a draw. The next round began with Ann jabbing and throwing left hooks and over-hand rights. Mahfood starting coming back throwing solid right hands and working inside as she beat Ann against the ropes. Ann again came back with body shots and over-hand rights. Ann stayed on the inside and threw upper cuts that popped

Mahfoodıs head back. Both boxers appeared exhausted yet neither was willing to surrender. Mahfood slipped five or six punches that Ann winged at her as the bell rang. Round six saw Ann come out dominating the fight, throwing clean power shots. Mahfood, unwilling to quit, continued to fight on the inside and tried to brawl with Ann. Mahfood got rocked several times with right hooks. Ann took revenge for the loss. Ann appeared to be out of gas, and I feared Mahfood would continue to wear her down, then finish her. However, Ann managed to dig deep and respond to whatever Mahfood threw. Mahfood landed a beautiful left hook as the bell rang that sent Ann into the ropes.  The next round saw Mahfood take shots that might have dropped a lesser person. This was the best woman's bout I had ever witnessed. Both fighters took shots that might have killed a buffalo, neither willing to give ground or surrender.  Ann Wolfe handed out punishment to Mahfood like I had never seen before in a womanıs fight. I have no idea how Mahfood managed to hang on during the last thirty seconds of the round. No matter what happens afterwards for either of these fighters, they have both earned the respect and admiration of all fight fans across the world. Ann got the victory and Mahfood earned my respect.  I offer a heartfelt salute to both of these warriors.

Laila Ali vs. Christi Martin
for the NABA Super Middleweight Championship

The next bout was the The Biggest Event ever in the history of Womenıs Boxing. Laila Ali squared off with the First Lady of Boxing, Christi Martin, whom I have admired for years; although, I have not always been impressed with her boxing skills. In my opinion her coach, who is also her husband, lacked the knowledge to prepare her to face Laila Ali. I believe he never had the skills to help her continue to improve.  As a result, she stopped developing as a boxer. She has consequently taken more punishment than necessary. If he had had more heart, he would have gotten help a long time ago. I do not enjoy seeing someone I respect take a pounding and I feared that is what would happen. I also do not care for trash-talking individuals, no matter their gender.  However, I have to give credit where it is due and Laila demonstrated heart, determination and skills. I also believe she would not be as popular if her name was not Ali. In my opinion, she got a free ride on her daddyıs name, but so have the Kennedy’s and anyone else who has famous parents. It may not be fair, but that is life.  I wish my daddy had left me such a proud, famous name. 

Both fighters denied bad feelings; however, I believe there was bad blood. When they squared off as the referee spoke, I doubted that Martin packed the punch to hurt someone fifteen pounds heavier.  The bell sounded and they came out punching. Ali came in throwing left jabs, right cross combinations with deadly intentions. Martin forced her way inside; however, took several shots for her trouble. Christi looked ill prepared and unable to get close enough to hurt Ali. Ali started measuring Martin for upper cuts.  She crouched a little and let loose with several shots. Ali started pounding Martin with lefts and right-hand crosses. Martin was clearly out of her league and completely overwhelmed. It was only her courage that brought her out for the second round. Ali pounded her with devastating right hands.

Martin never learned to throw straight punches.  As a result, Ali beat her to the punch every time. Ali beat Martin like a dog--like a redheaded stepchild--like someone might beat a defenseless blind man.  Martin took such a terrible pounding, the crowd was on their feet for the  entire fight. The third round had Ali completely ahead, and Martin looking like she had been in a war. Martin was completely unable to get on the inside. She took bombs from Ali that might have killed a horse.  Ali seemed determined to destroy her. Martin made several feeble attempts to trade shots, but this was completely incorrect strategy. Then down she went to the canvas, with one knee on the floor. A mistake by Aliıs corner man gave Christi several moments of additional rest. However, the referee let them continue and Ali attacked her like a rabid dog and beat Martin so bad that it would have been impossible to recover during the rest period. The fourth round began with

Martin trading with Ali again, which was dumber than putting your head in a noose. Martin made the worst mistake one can make in boxing, and paid the ultimate price.  Ali beat her down again like Martin had never been beat in her life. She took the worse beating I have ever seen her take in her fourteen years of boxing.  Her coach is as much to blame for her defeat as Ali.  Christi Martin, who had never lost in her career, went down in a humiliating defeat, in a fight she should have never taken and was never prepared to fight.  Life is full of tough lessons. Too bad her husband, who is also her manager, was not in there taking the beating he deserved.  Talk about letting your mouth get your ass in trouble. The dammed fool helped to hand his wife the only defeat of her life. Things may never be the same between them again.  Christi has to know she was not properly trained nor physically built to give away so much weight and so much height.  Christi should drop that fool for talking her into taking the fight. What was the guy thinking?

Still, one must admit Ali did win a decisive victory and is now the NABA Super Middleweight Champion.  I do not know how I feel after watching this mismatch. I am not sure it helped lift boxing as I hoped it would.

Native American warriors would say that a man can live without honor, but cannot die without it, for death is a time of reckoning, when the world reviews our deeds.  How will history remember this event. Will it say Martin was the hero for taking the fight? Will history say Ali forced the fight via money and political pressure, knowing it was a no contest? Christi Martin went down fighting; she brought pride and honor to boxing, which is often lacking these qualities. I salute her and send her my best wishes. To Ali I would say, as I have before,       there is no honor in beating down someone beneath your level of competition.  I see no reason to rejoice and cheer, if you canıt beat someone who is six shorter and thirty pounds lighter youıve got some real problems.   I was a fan of your father, I am not sure I am a fan of yours.

However, as the Godfather says, ³This is the life weıve chosen.

See you Ringside,

Jorge A. Martinez