Stockton Civic Auditorium
Martinez vs. Angel Mata
when I said one of the best things about Guns Smoke is that it has two
freeways running through it, because it makes easy to leave? Residents now
have another reason to leave. It seems that according to the San Francisco
Chronicle, we have some of the most lenient laws pertaining to prostitution.
According to the story in the paper, the district attorney is making hookers
sign contracts with the police, stating they will not return to the same
street where they were arrested. Consequently, prostitution has increased, and
we are now attracting out of town hookers. We are getting hookers from Las
Vegas and other parts of the country. Residents who were once only afraid of
being shot, mugged by newly released convicts, or their children attacked by
registered sex offenders now have something else to worry about. The real joke
is that Mayor Pedesto, is running for the state senate and Police Chief Chavez
is running for mayor, dig this,......... on their merits. What can anyone say,
reality is stranger than fiction. Thank God we have boxing to help us out of
fever has once again taken root amongst Stockton residents. The most recent
boxing event held at the Civic Auditorium proves that the town known as
"Fat City" has not forgotten its rich history. The event promoted by
George Chung was called "Return to Fat City"; George is famous in
Central Valley boxing circles. Like all promoters, George is likes money, oh
he may like boxing, but he certainly isnąt going to be overly generous when
he pays the boxers. Match Maker Jeff Ruf, made the matches. The objective of
any promoter is to cover his expenses, put on a good show and make some money.
That's the reality of any business. Another reality, which is not commonly
known, is that man, by nature can not walk a straight line. An individual
without some assistance would wonder aimlessly in circles. This may sound out
of place in a boxing story, except that without the supervision of a state
agency, promoters would not walk a straight line. They might pocket most of
the proceeds and take advantage of the boxers, you know like in the good old
days of Fat City. Take this event. The contract I inspected said the event
would not be filmed, yet, unless you are totally blind, you noticed the large
overhead lights and all the professional cameramen. The Boxing Commissioner
present either did not notice the overhead lights, or did not connect the
dots. When this was brought up to her attention, she stated that the event was
being filmed for George Chung's personal use. This sounds very suspicious and
should have set an alarm in her head, but it didn't. I've never seen any
promoter spend money unless he was going to make money. I am not a heartless
person, however I canąt believe anyone would believe that. Talk about
other side of this is that unless someone is willing to file a law suit in
civil court, the commission will not act upon this knowledge, so one might
wonder, if they do not use their authority to enforce the rules that they
require the rest of us to follow, WHAT GOOD ARE THEY? Its a troubling set of
circumstance and no one seems willing to step up to George and ask him
directly if he intends to market the film. Because if he is, then he owes
every fighter fair compensation. The dark horse of reality however, is that if
a boxer, or his trainer files a written, formal compliant against George, they
would most likely be blacked listed and never fight in his events again. So
once again, I ask. What good is the boxing commission if they are not going to
enforced the rulebook, which they supposedly use as their bible? The little
guys, the boxers and trainers need them to step up and say, Hey whatąs up
much as we need whistle blowers, no one seems to like them much. Oh yea, we
pay lip service to them, but when have you ever heard of a whistle blower
receiving thanks and acknowledgment from the agency they embarrassed by
showing up their incompetence ? I donąt want to be known as a whistle blower.
I would just like to have the commission bring some attention to this topic,
and if necessary address it, without someone having to risk their future by
filing a formal compliant. After all, they wear badges and enjoy showing them
off. Shouldnąt they address a violation when they see one occur? Why must a
trainer or boxer, risk being blacklisted by filing a compliant, if they
witnessed the act themselves? It just seems pointless to have a commission if
they lack the necessary grit to do their job.
expected the commission to be made up of highly intelligent individuals with
impeccable credentials and character. Yet, for the most part, the ones I have
met seem uncomfortable in their roles, unclear about their authority,
uncertain on the rules and mean spirited when challenged. I was disappointed
when unprofessional comments were made concerning individuals not present. You
got to wonder, why is it man can not walk a straight line without assistance
of a compass, map or someone playing the role of policeman. What makes us so
weak spirited. Why do we need someone watching us all the time? I tell you,
the more I know people, the better I like my dog.
attendance according to some was 2353, others say it was more like 1100,
Personally I donąt care. It gave local boxers a chance to show their stuff
and fight fans a chance to see professional boxing in their own back yard. I
had a spot on the card. My boxer Raul Talaments made his boxing debut against
a tough little guy from San Francisco. Raul was the winner of nine tough man
shows and proved his mettle against a much heavier opponent. After knocking
down Joe Bradly twice, Raul still lost a decision. It was a hard fought
battle, both fighters displaying some of their inexperience, but overall a
very good match. As a sports writer and trainer I am in a difficult position.
Some might say I would be bias towards my own boxer. However, I still
believe that the less one deceives oneself, the better you can sleep. I
believe Joe Bradly won the fight and earned the decision. I told my fighter
so. It was a tough lesson, one that will not go unnoticed. The necessary
changes are already in process.
big event was Gentleman David Martinez battling Angel Mata of Sonora, Mexico.
I was honestly too busy to watch all the fight. The rounds I saw seemed even,
perhaps a little towards Mata. Anyone who knows David will tell you he is the
nicest guy you'd ever want to meet. His is respectful, down to earth never
bragging or acting irresponsibly. I have been a fan since he was an amateur.
Not all of the crowd was happy with the final decision, but whatąs new about
that. Boxing is controversy, end of story. The best part of David fighting is
that Stockton once again has a hometown hero. The predominately Latino crowd
loves this kid. He is a good role model for younger kids and always gives one
hundred percent. Congratulations David.
fight between Sal (Jelly Belly) Fernetti and Dan McGarry was a rematch.
Both of these guys need to get into better shape. They seemed to be out of gas
after the first round and were slapping and wrestling each other throughout
the fight. Fernetti got the decision.
Carlos Garcia knocked out Warren Kronberger in the second round. Rodney Jones,
37 years old knock out 43 year old, former champion Manning Galloway in the
sixth round. It was not a very exciting bout. Nothing like what was expected.
Galloway seemed to be just trying to survive the event and never went for it.
Jones, who dominated the entire bout stalked and took shots at Galloway, until
he finally nailed him and put him down.
one could say it was a Return to Fat City. The only down note is that the
Black populations of Stockton did not turn out to support Rodney. For some
reason Black sports fans donąt follow boxing or donąt care for it. They seem
to love football and basketball, but when it comes to boxing, no dice. Some
say its because Black sport fans have so many other sports to choose form.
Others say that Black sports fans wonąt spend their hard earned money to
support local fighters. Once a Black fighter reaches the big time, then
everyone seems to like them, but not until then. Latinos sports fans love
boxing, they always have. I believe its because Latinos love to fight
themselves. They might not all be good at it, but most Latinos I know would
step up and take a swing, if given an excuse and an opportunity. I donąt
know, perhaps no one ever will. I do hope more Black sports fans get behind
Rodney. Promoters donąt usually promote fighters, unless they draw a crowd.
In speaking with local promoters, it seems Latino boxers draw bigger crowds
and will fight for less. As I said the more I know about boxing, the more I
wonder if I shouldnąt have taken up chess, as my sport of choice. Speaking of
donąt care for the book Fat City. It presented a very negative picture of
washed out, drunk boxers, knocking up their girl friends in the fields and
behaving irresponsibly. If any of those images are true, I hope we never
return to Fat City. So much of the book is negative and depressing. Boxing in
those days was a reflection of the terrible economic times. It also reflected
the corruption and dishonestly of our society. Oh, no, it sounds like we have
returned to Fat City. Stockton is exactly as the book depicted, this is Fat
I've discovered another reality I didnąt really want to learn. I know you've
had that experience. Anyway, The next fight is scheduled for Feb. 27th, 2004
and will be presented by Fred Lewis a new comer to the promoter’s circle. I
know Fred personally and I wish him luck.