AIR DATE: Jan 26 2021 06:40UTC
EPISODE: Episode 13
Special Guest Howard Grant | The Scoop with Bola Ray | Talkin Fight
Watch The Scoop from Monday to Friday, featuring Canadian heavyweight champ Bola Ray, who lends his vast experience in the sport and provides his comments boxing – its history and future – on YouTube and TalkinFight.com/live.
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Scoop hey good evening, talking fight fans once again, thanks for joining us on the scoop tonight, bola ray has a very special guest joining us as it seems to be a week of special guests on the scoop uh.
Why don’t you give us a bit of an intro ebola and uh introduce our guest today, i’m bringing a real special guy.
He is a former amateur champion, former olympian, actually a well-decorated amateur career traveled the world and opens really well um then turned pro, but more more importantly, well won the canadian title of a professional.
So this guy he knows how to win, to say the least, but over and above that his life is boxing.
He is now a dedicated and well-decorated professional boxing coach.
My name is bola raymond wally, and this is the school we’re talking today with one howard grant from montreal howard.
How are you doing? How are you very good thanks thanks for thanks for coming on board, thanks for coming on board, it’s been a while.
We talk once a while, but we don’t see each other too much.
I know i know, and especially with this covet nonsense.
Uh boxing’s dead boxing yeah.
I wanted to start off by uh, asking you to give uh a little synopsis.
As to your beginnings, your early beginnings in sport, you made the national team the first time – 82 83, yes, 83 yeah yeah, but uh before that i was on the quebec team uh.
You know we started brother and i we started boxing together.
We came into this country from jamaica at night and we started boxing in 79 was introduced to the boxing gym by a friend of ours named alex stakos.
I went to school and uh, i guess like they said we got, we got smitten, i don’t know.
That’S it that’s how we started the sport’s intoxicating, to say the least from your starting, you went and you saw early success or, more importantly, what kept your uh? What kept your interest in the sport? I think it was a competitiveness and also the uh.
The one-on-one aspect of the game, you know, uh, i did play basketball and i did do some cross-country running, but i think uh, the one-on-one ask you have nobody to blame and at that time i wasn’t even thinking about it.
You know you’re young.
I was 13 years old when i started and when i was 15 i won my first canadian title in bc.
You know so and then uh 16 years national team on the junior i went to the world junior championships, one of bronze medal and uh.
You know i never looked back ever since.
Do you remember people on that team? Ah, there was a star.
I remember us if there was a wow, i i i tell you i’d have to.
I don’t really have to do a little bit of research, but we had a.
We had a pretty good team, uh lenox lewis.
Of course lenox was the only gold medalist.
I won a bronze.
I think there was another bronze there, but i can’t remember but uh we had a pretty good team and for me what was so interesting about this world championship uh, i think, losing to the in the semi-finals to the cuban that i fought.
I think it was maybe one of the best he was the hardest puncher ever father, maybe one of the best fighters ever fought in my entire life uh angela.
No, his name was angela.
I passed away here in florida yeah.
Like my, you know, uh time there was all the russians – romanians, germans, uh cubans – you know, everybody was there, you know so it was it was.
I think it was tougher back then, when it was uh when the when the eastern bloc country was around was it was tough.
The competition was very, very, very, very tough.
How do you, how do you see like what would quantify it being any different than today? Well, you know the usr back.
Then the soviet union was one country.
Now today they have uh ukraine, they have russia, they have uzbekistan, they got the armenia and they could go on and on they’ve made 14 different countries in one country.
You know i mean yeah, then there are east, germany, romania, you know these guys were you know.
Most of the fighters are part of the the red army or the military aspect.
You know and uh.
I think what was different us as fighters back in the 80s.
We didn’t have all these gadgets like we do today we’re focused on what we have to do.
I think today there’s a bit too much of a distraction uh for that.
That’S first, that’s my person, personal saying i can’t say it about all the other guys.
There’S a lot of distractions in in not only boxing, but a lot of a lot of supporting people in life itself, fair enough, fair enough! You then, you then went on to represent canada in quite a few international games.
Commonwealth games world championship.
What have you um, but most notably you were part of that team that 88 sold team, that was, that was an iconic year by my stint.
That was an iconic year for robberies that was an iconic year for wins other than 2016.
I don’t know if i can’t think of another one in my lifetime that was so controversial.
A lot of guys got ripped off in 88 olympics.
You know i was in a very close fight.
I lost a close decision to a swede, but i remember roy jones.
Getting robbed blind, you know against a korean and the olympics was heading was held in south korea yep.
I remember, i remember, todd foster the guy.
I fought at 68.
5 kilo, the american he had to fight against the current guy two time he knocked him out and they then they said it was a cheap.
It was a hit behind the head and they made the fight again this uh in the evening time.
You know they fought in the afternoon and then they had to fight again in the evening and then foster really knocked their heart again.
So there was a lot of politics.
It was a lot of you know the political aspect of the game.
From back then it’s been around, you know, but uh it was.
It was a lot of guys got ripped off.
That’S insanity, because i know the story of jamie pagadam.
Do you? Do you remember it? I forgot who jamie fought in the quarterfinals or the was it the quarterfinals.
It was uh.
He fought mongolia, he fought mongolia.
I don’t remember i don’t.
I can’t remember exactly so a quick synopsis, but he fought.
He was fighting a guy from mongolia in the second round.
He cracks him with a solid left.
The ref stops.
The fight gives him a standing a cam later on in the fight he catches him with a right hook drops him.
He gets another eight count.
He catch a couple seconds before the round is over catches.
Him again with another right hook, drops him again in accordance to amateur rules, then, and today um three knockouts.
In a rule i mean three standing accounts in a round.
Is automatic uh what’s called uh, but that ref let the fight go on into the third round the canadian side? Didn’T the canadian corner didn’t say anything.
No one said anything goes into the next round.
The mongolian guy drops jamie with uh, with the left hook that jamie gets up and the ref just doesn’t even count him just walks him to the corner without wave the fight off walks him to the corner.
James is like what the hell’s going on the fight’s done goes.
No, i’m fine.
He didn’t even count him.
Let the foot go now, jamie’s all upset, and now, after the fight after they get out of the ring, that’s when they go off the team.
Canada goes off and puts in a petition to say this is like that was a blatant foul that that’s just criminal, what they just did, so they reversed the the the win gave it to jamie and he had to get ready for his next fight against baltimore.
Well, bulgaria then goes off and puts in a petition saying that jaime can’t continue because he got knocked down or he got knocked down.
The ref stopped the fight because of head trauma because you got knocked down well and they’re more successful and not letting me go on.
But then, if that’s the case, then what the hell did they do with todd foster there, yeah yeah, foster, foster, got he got shot, he got eat.
Well, he knocked the guy out.
They you know not, they wanted they wanted.
The koreans wanted to meddle in.
You know the guy, he smashed him again in the second bite and uh he went on a team, got a silver medal in the olympics like three hours later, but the thing is they on witchcraft.
They successfully denied jamie to fight for 30 days, because that was the rules you had you get knocked out.
You get 30 days suspension, but they took, but they twisted the rules for, for that for uh, the korean guy against todd foster like it was arguably one of the most.
It was a lot of you you do after the ada olympics.
They changed the scoring uh because of what happened with especially roy jones.
They changed the scoring uh.
What’S the proper word, i’m looking for the way this scoring there they started now with this number system, like you know, guys, are winning fights five to three fifteen to you know instead of uh, judging like a professional fight, you know now they went back to judging The the right way you know, but this complaint right, yeah punch, your number was uh.
It was completely stupid.
You know it was electronic and it was pun.
It was also uh, what’s called point scoring and points yeah that had a host problems in its own right right.
Oh 100, 100 yeah, but boxing has changed a lot since uh.
Since the eighties i mean uh, it’s it’s not the same.
It’S changed a lot.
You know i i think sports has changed a lot, much money involved.
You know everything the hunger i don’t see like no doesn’t know what to do.
It’S changed a lot.
This changes a lot for the worse for the better.
I think for the worse because, like when i was fighting at that time, you know i was a credit athlete i was getting paid by the government.
You know everyone was running.
I was ranked like second in the world i was getting paid, but now i don’t even think they they helped athletes.
I was even told one time you know the athletes got to pay like half tickets of life.
It doesn’t make any sense.
You know i mean back, then we used to get.
We were sponsored by leaders, we got everything.
We got suits moxie shoes, boxing trunks, uh tank tops uh the head, just name it everything they.
You know they really looked.
Adidas really like everything i wear.
It is only still today uh they really looked after us and yeah.
I was agreement also looked after the athletes.
You know some guys were getting from the government or from province or whatever the case was, but i don’t think that uh it’s like that today and today today there’s more money.
So you know what happened.
It doesn’t make any sense, you know, so could that be? Why we’re not seeing the gold medals or the medals period yeah? That’S why i mean i was reading an article a few years ago.
They wanted to send, i think, two or three guys to the olympics.
It doesn’t make any sense, you know they stole weight, classes, you’re going to say, there’s not 12 guys in canada or 10 guys in canada to represent the country in the olympic games.
Money to fund the next olympic games is going to have eight male and five female.
Eight males, eight males, eight male divisions.
We still have the full spectrum competing, but only eight is going to is going to be represented in the olympic games.
It doesn’t make sense three classes.
What you’re saying gon na be eight weeks last week, so let’s say: there’s a featherweight weight, middleweight and super middleweight and another weight loss and everywhere no no super.
No, you got the wealth.
You got the featherweight yeah lightweight um.
What’S called, i think, phantom weight, welterweight middleweight and then they go up to light heavy when, with the three big boys, the light heavy, the heavyweight and the and the super heavyweight, but in the middle and the little ones, they’re cutting out the the uh.
What’S that precisely yeah, so what are they going to do for the woman? What is that or, more importantly, um there’s going to be five weight classes there they’ve added two new ones: welterweight and uh.
I think middleweight um, but then they they kept uh.
I think uh 126 135 and i think one four – not 147, maybe one one smaller but there’s five top top is middleweight wow, wow they’re playing with uh what they’re doing they’re they’re charring when the wheel.
He was never broken to start they’re gon na they’re gon na alienate a lot of countries.
You have countries that predominantly are little fighters, so you have like the philippines who has who stacked with little guys, but now they don’t have the opportunities, because they’re little yeah yeah yeah all right.
What are you gon na? Do you know what on the shots? We have no say we’re like sheeps, you know can’t do nothing but uh.
I miss those days.
Our days are good, those amateur days in the 80s uh with uh uh anyways.
I hated you guys in ontario.
I could tell right now i respect you respect me.
You know i mean it was like quebec in ontario, like you know, you bastard you, son of a [ __ ], you guys are you guys are winning at all you guys.
I hated you guys with your passion, get my brother russo everything and you know then he would come back.
You weren’t, you know he was crazy.
Then i lost faster than i came back.
Ontario was you guys were the king king of the hill man, and you were hated by everybody, yeah everybody.
It was me from quebec, manny, sobre from bc and another guy, maybe from alberta, crazy, yeah yeah exactly it was all ontario.
It’S good nuts nuts.
You know, but the programs have changed so much.
You know it’s uh, it’s crazy.
You know we’re now we’re now living in a world where it’s now you guys quebec is the.
Is the powerhouse yeah? Well, i think they did a good job uh.
You know they brought some trainers from those that got here from cuba before and then they brought somebody else in and you know so uh they made some changes uh over the last, i guess 10 or 15 years.
I really don’t follow the amateurs too much.
You know i don’t uh.
Actually that’s what i was going to ask you um.
You then turn pro and your pro career.
You won the canadian title against my boy, nedrick simmons.
That was a good fight.
That was an amazing fight network.
Was tough [ Music ].
Another guy from ontario again i didn’t added fire added fire, but and then i ended up like i now find greg gale before that a great deal.
Another guy that i fought in hampshire know i could have excelled more, but i had some.
I had some pretty tough fights in an early time i mean i fought against jake the secret rodriguez, and my, i think was my six or seven fight and jake.
Just think rodriguez ended up being an ibf champion at uh 140.
I lost uh, uh, really really sure he became european champion and i lost him.
You lost him in the commonwealth.
No, no! I’M talking about in the pros.
No in the comments.
Yes, yes, yes, exactly belief, that’s right! That’S right! England and i got dropped one shot and they stopped the fight like this.
That’S what they’ll do yeah and then i lost to uh, stevie, johnson and stevie johnson became wbc champion for quite some time with the champion.
So you know my thought was um.
It looks good on paper, so pretty you know, i lost two good guys and i had a draw with a from world champion.
You know yeah and then i got out of the game and i started coaching exactly you made a career of of the game and what a career you did too.
Like i love how many champions have you have you uh worked with, i don’t know man.
I i you know, i’m not a guy to be.
You have a uh an agenda to write on all the guys.
I just you know i i i try to enjoy every moment that i have with all the guys.
Even i even work with some opponents, which is like you know, guys that think they’re gon na you know and i just go in there shut up.
I try to help everybody.
You know uh black wine, you know whatever it is, i’m there when i’m there.
It’S i’m good to win.
You know we.
I looked across the across the ring twice at you twice at you, i’m thinking where i found that one called palma i’ll, never forget it.
I walked over to say congrats because they called it a draw and you go ray.
They robbed, you don’t come back.
Yeah wow i was like.
I knew i i knew i won.
What was that fight was that fighting tobacco in montreal it was in montreal.
It was at the belt center yeah yeah yeah yeah yeah, because i was training, paul yeah.
You were training and then the second time i looked across the corner and you and otis were in uh david cadoux’s corner.
When i fought for the canadian title in uh.
Revere, yes, yes, yes, what happened there? I don’t remember this guy you’re, going way back, i’m talking about you’re going way back! That’S early 2000 man, yeah yeah, it was 2008.
I know i knocked out.
You knocked him out in the city in the city, and i knocked him out in the sixth i knocked this.
I stopped from the sixth that was that was like one of the best fights ever he was.
He was an incredible fighter.
He was like athletics, nice guy too yeah yeah yeah.
So you don’t talk to him.
I i i i didn’t want to talk to him, because i don’t have time for that until that’s the [ __ ], oh, no, really really talented fighter and uh! Oh, that that was that’s one, proud moment for me, but i realized you know who was his head.
Coach was uh.
Oh my god, i forgave they asked my brother and i told that, but his his score, his head coach was uh his name.
He passed away.
The guy he’s not the pastor of the old man.
You know i mean but uh he’s a very, very gentleman gentlemen, david wow, yeah wow, so you’re you’re, one one you’re, you’re you’re.
You have one win against me.
One draw! That’S! Okay.
Could you feed me up? Another one yeah, you have another heavy weight for me.
Oh man, it’s better like this we’re sitting and we laugh together have a drink together.
Oh wow um.
You have a great deal of you’ve like i said you you’ve trained quite a few uh notable champions over the years um.
I a couple friends of mine uh, oliver laconchi being one of them um, but i wanted to see if you talk a little bit about a name fighter that goes by librado.
What happened in that scenario? How i met this guy? Even my brother fought and we were fighting for a title, elimination and uh.
I forget the date, but they end up stopping otis in the ninth round.
I stopped the phylodesizer shot.
He couldn’t see he got dropped and librarado at the time was like a bulldozer like uh forget about this.
Guy was like uh, you know you hate him.
He rose his head like this and he just kept coming and they’re like this.
You have to shoot this guy to slow him down, you know i mean and uh he beat otis and you know he one day he called me and he asked me if i could help [ Music ].
He fought against uh.
He was here and came back for like uh this week’s training camps six seven weeks, we fought against robert stiglitz in california and we knocked stiglitz out.
He beat the living piss out of this guy and this guy became world champion afterwards.
I mean he demoralized.
It then he fought against uh.
After that, i think was he had one fight, then he fought booty and the fight with booty was uh.
You know was very controversial, but you know i mean uh.
These are things that happened in the game.
It was it was.
It was a very, very bad.
It was a very bad time for me because i was suspended.
I went to push the referee and i got three months suspension.
I had to go in front of a tribunal and all this thing and uh you know, but the one, the nice thing that came out of all of this scenario.
They asked me to coach at the end of his career, but this librarado and my brother.
These three guys fought against each other, and i was i’m i’m honored to be here to be to be a part of all these three guys, and not my brother, i mean we’re together we’re partners in a business.
You know it’s my brother, but i speak to.
I speak to librato every month.
Every you know every couple of every couple of weeks we talked you know, i mean we were very close and muta and i were very close.
You know so you know not to say the boxing people they’re these barbarians and they hate each other.
You know, after after we had an event here last year, uh to fight against pancreatic cancer, yeah and liberato librado came up for this.
Your brother was here in the city for this.
There’S a lady, a lady, a friend of mine’s uh, mother daughter, is going up.
You know they’re going to get married and we did this and liberators, and my brothers were all hugging and kissing.
You know it’s, it’s very nice to see this kind of thing, the the one that you could have after your first finish and you sit down.
I mean you know it’s, it’s crazy.
It’S a hell of a thing.
Yeah yeah is a great man.
You know i mean the brother was a great man, my brother’s a good.
You know these guys are you know good soldiers, guys, you know yeah yeah.
We we make some of the greatest friends by punching each other in the head.
It’S a hell of a thing because the first fight – you know i mean uh muta – was beating the living piss out of liberato and then and then the brother heard him.
And then he started to get tired.
I told him and he wasn’t like an animal and you know, dropped him, and you know i mean it was a kind of a long time.
Would they want to fight the decision seconds? [, Laughter, ], third square, nice yeah, you redeemed them beautiful.
They shot uppercut to the the solar plex, where i was all right and uh we became friends after i was very bitter.
You know yeah amazing, that’s amazing, yeah.
What would you like to happen? How would you like boxing or what corrections would you like to see and well, you said that you don’t follow the amateur game, but how about the pro game? What changes would you like to see what i believe, i believe, what what what should happen and what? What i would like to see happen, and i think what some of the fighters would like to see happen to see all the promoters work together, not fighting against you.
You don’t understand yeah, it’s it’s very, very, it’s very difficult because also some of the fighters.
They got these contracts and they’re.
You know they’re they’re, not even there yet but they’re.
Looking for the sun, the moon and the stars.
You know i mean you know: the promoters are taking chances, they’re, paying out and they’re saying you know, hey, i’m not making money and whatever the case may be, but uh it’s not every day you go, you get lucky and get a guy like canelo.
That’S uh that its popularity is out of the roof.
You know yeah, you know i mean it’s uh, but if the fight, if the promoters would work more together to make more competitive fight, not to not to uh pick these schmucks, you know put the fights more competitive, like the time when leonard and uh leonard and Uh and uh hearns and the benitez and cuevas and green from uh england, all these guys, the best will find the best today today, the best i’m finding the best you know i mean like.
I would like to see the fight.
I really want to see i’d like to see crawford with the skyrockets.
You know that’s right, i’d like to see crawford and spanx of walt wait.
These are the two best guys they say it’s happening, but you got to see until they get in the ring.
They say, but nothing is signed, yet they say yeah but uh.
Nothing is signed.
You know what i mean when they got a sign a date: distinguishment gypsy king’s, no joke this guy.
This guy’s, you know yeah, you know.
So i think that’s that’s! What’S missing! That’S why you know the ufc he is getting, so the popularity is like restriction of it, because some of the the best books do not find the best guys.
You know they wan na.
They want the same person to be fighting a guy with a record of uh twenty, three and and four.
You know you guys yeah, you got ta make uh five million dollars for a guy like that, you know, i mean the guy’s going to get blown underwater.
You know yeah and there’s a lot of good fighters out there.
Today i mean there’s this kid: derante davis he’s a dog.
You know he’s a good fighter.
I’D like to see him with that lopez down the line today, david says no he’s good or even against local people.
I agree you know, machenko got beat, but he’s gon na come back.
You know but uh the the the boxing the boxing uh fraternity right now is very, very rich.
It’S very rich there’s a lot of good fighters in europe that is coming out of uh dual russia.
You know yes uh the promoters if they could get together and just have tea like they did in the past.
You know: break break bread and, let’s make a deal, you know like.
Let’S do it together, but these guys today they don’t want to risk their stars.
Getting beat because their stars, like they’re, you know the pot of gold, you know yeah, let’s hope.
That’S all it says here.
Let’S hope, that’s all for sure money talks.
They say money talks.
You know precisely precisely um.
Only in america howard.
I want to thank you for coming on board.
I want to thank you.
We appreciate it for your time.
Um it was.
It was great, seeing you again uh.
We will see each other again after this covered nonsense.
Uh finishes but uh yeah, hopefully we’ll get out of this thing and uh.
You know what it’s uh at least they’re doing boxing in some states in the states.
There’S nothing in canada, they’re putting on shows and come back yeah.
They say they’re gon na make a show there, but i think uh i e tmo.
I have the tigers, they don’t know they were supposed to go here, but then they brought the show to mexico.
But i heard something might happen in february here in quebec, but if they extend this curfew – and this thing, how are they going to do it? You know yeah the point: it’s it’s impossible, they’re telling you can’t train, you can’t go to the gym.
Are you supposed to train properly for a fight? If you can’t train, are you supposed to spark how you’re supposed to be six feet apart? You know it’s.
It’S very very strange times we’re living in man.
Hey, i’m just looking forward to the fact that we got the vaccine and maybe uh we’ll be able to get back to some normalcy, so yeah yeah, i know yeah, but once again thanks thanks a lot and uh.
I want to thank uh talking fight nation.
The name is bola and that’s a scoop all right guys.
Take care, howard.