There is a Bottleneck

And no one is complaining except me, it seems.

There have been three recent ‘title eliminators’ but no movement toward an actual title fight.  It seems that the sobriquet “Mandatory Challenger” has as much meaning as their boxing names, like “Towering Inferno” or “Touch of Sleep.”

A long time ago I made a spreadsheet that created boxing names.  The main joke was that bad nick names, like “Dim Bulb”, “Gelding” or “Nicely Coiffed” were included.  Another joke aspect was that all the names were either Latin sounding, or eastern European, like “Igor “the Switch-Hitter” Mayorga” or “Manuel “Two-Sheds” Solzhenitsyn.  I looked but couldn’t find that one.  I did find a generator that I wrote with all Jewish names, to wit:

Your Son’s Birth MonthYour Daughter’s Birth MonthYour Birth Month
1Lester the Hammering Hebrew Schwartz
2Morey you want I should stop hitting you? Lieberman
3Saul The Dybbuk Finkelstein
4Bernie You call that a Jab? Rothschild
5Malcolm the Smiter Abelman
6Abraham the Horn of Joshua Lipschitz
7Hiram the Pillar of Fire Rosenthal
8Cyrus The Desert Wanderer Cohen
9Ruben the Mensch Feinberg
10Chaim Matzeltov Liebowitz
11Benjamin the Plague of Fists Abramowitz
12Rorey Aaron’s Rod Morgenstern

(I got “Ruben “the Smiter” Abramowitz”.)

Then I found one that I created that riffed off of the stereotype of Italian organized crime figures, but imagining that they were both boxers, and also office workers:

Your birth monthYour Wife’s Birth MonthYour Son’s Birth Month
1Jimmy The Copier Rutigliano
2Tommy The Kuerig Giordano
3Joey The Shredder Esposito
4Pauly The Dumpster Romano
5Rocco The Stapler Bianchi
6Sally the Copier Mancini
7Tony “Three-Hole-Punch” De Luca
8Bruno the Rolodex Napolitano
9Sammy I.T. Moretti
10Guido The Server Marchesi
11Pete The Gopher Lucchese
12Alfredo The Remote Connection Angelini

(I got “Pete “the Dumpster” Moretti”.)

You see there was a time when the boxing world was full of Irish men.  Angelo Dundee wasn’t Irish, and his name wasn’t really Dundee, but he wanted his name to sound like an Irish name.  He wanted his name to make it look like he belonged in the sport.  The later Italian men seemed to dominate the sport, men like Marciano, Graziano or LaMotta.   Then black men had a dynasty.  More recently the Latin men and eastern Europeans.  Burt Sugar wrote about this phenomenon and linked it to immigration, etc.  Don’t know if he touched all the bases, but it was interesting.

There was Jewish heavyweight champ once.  Max Baer was Jewish.

Then things got really weird.  This last one was for architects that also were somehow prizefighters:

The month of your AnniversaryYour daughter’s Birth MonthYour Son’s Birth Month
1Michael Notes of Earth Johnson-Smythe
2Criss Whisper of Toffee Wallingford
3Thad Peat Smoke Patterson
4Douglas the Vision Moody
5Rory Dark Sweetness Evans-Childers
6Alexander Learning Pathways Witherspoon
7Troy Innovation Propeller Samuelson
8Bruce Limitless Potential Montigue
9Lemuel Delicious Accent Buttifoucco
10Samson Postmodern Renaissance Simpson-Prague
11Aldo Juicy Peach Whistler
12Chad Noble Purpose Dorchester

(I got “Michael “the Vision” Buttifoucco”)

Architects… really weird people.  Where was I?  Oh, yes.

I refer to Filip Hrgovic, who won a title eliminator against Zhang Zhilie, and is next in line to challenge Usyk for one of his belts, or so they say.  Andy Ruiz also won an eliminator against Luis Ortiz, and he is also next in line to fight Usyk for a belt, and Joe Joyce knocked out Joseph “No Name” Parker and he too, is next in line.  I understand that Daniel Dubois is somebody’s ‘Mandatory’ for some reason too.

Wait, is one of these guys supposed to fight Fury, (who is retired)?  Because if you haven’t heard he’s planning to fight Mahmoud “Diamond Boy” Charr (No, I’m not making fun of him, that’s his name.)  If you don’t know, Charr, whose career has not earned him a title shot, has been shot 4 times in the abdomen, has had both hips replaced, and is 37 years old.

Here’s a picture of him in training.

Inspiring, Tyson.  Real nice.

Being a “Mandatory Challenger” seems to be analogous to being in the “friend zone” with a member of the opposite sex.  There doesn’t seem to be any way out, and you never get the ‘closure’ you desire.

So we have a phalanx of men, qualified men, men who have been tested and have passed, men pounding at the door, and the sanctioning bodies act like referees in  a wrestling match. (“What chair? I didn’t see a chair!”).  Heavyweight boxing is constipated and the only way to get things moving is for the sanctioning bodies (AKA the Tapeworm) to start actually stripping titles from their “champions” that refuse to fight.

Fury should have his title taken away and be forced to wear a tutu for his next match.

I shall retire to Bedlam.

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