When Boxing Writers Talk: David P. Greisman And Tim Starks On Wladimir Klitschko Vs. David Haye, Shane Mosley’s EPO, Arm Removal, Boxing Chants And More

From time to time BoxingScene’s David P. Greisman and myself gchat one another. Sometimes we talk about boxing, even. In something of an experiment, I bring you a gchat transcript from a few hours ago. After I finished my dinner, talk turned to some recent news in the pugilistic world.

David: yo’sef.

me: ah here’s the deal:

i just got dinner

i know, i know

David: eat, sir

i’m reading and procrastinating on bedtime

eat, eat.

you’re too skinny.

me: i ended up taking a really long nap and stuff, and just got home

David: s’ok, brotha

me: all right

David: anything delish?

me: Popeye’s chicken

David: !


me: two spicy legs, one non-spicy.

David: i would give someone’s right arm for popeye’s

me: you told me i was too skinny.

David: closest one to here is like in Albany.

me: fortunately there are a couple Popeye’s around DC

David: ok, closer than albany, but still a haul

me: it’s not my favorite fried chicken, but it’s fried chicken, and fried chicken is the ultimate food

David: what’s your fave fried chicken?

Things I miss: Popeye’s, Chick-fil-A…

me: we have places in evansville. Famous Recipe and Grandy’s. both chains, smaller chains.

David: Yuengling, as I’ve noted before

me: Chick-fil-A — there’s one a them in Silver Spring

so strange.

David: what’s that?

me: No Yuengling.

Did you know about Andre the Giant’s drinking habits?

David: i’ve heard stories, but go on

me: http://www.moderndrunkardmagazine.com/issues/10_06/10_06_andre_giant.html#

I quote:

On another occasion, Andre was touring the Kansas City territory and went out for drinks after a show with Bobby Heenan and several other wrestlers. When the bartender hollered last call, Andre, slightly annoyed, announced that he didn’t care to leave. Rather than risk an altercation with his hulking customer, the bartender told Andre he could stay only if he was drinking, imagining, surely, that he would soon be rid of the big fella. Andre thanked the man, and proceeded to order 40 vodka tonics.

This is my segue-way moment: What do you think Wladimir Klitschko drinks?

David: Hm.


You know why?

me: i want to.

David: We’ve learned that Klitschko doesn’t like to take shots.

me: wambam thank you maam

so i watched his grainy video and stuff

it was artsy

David: the short one or the long one?

me: wait, there’s more than one?

David: yeah.

me: hit me.

David: looking

one was 30 seconds

the other:


me: i’m not saying i know what gay porn is like, but it’s got that vibe

David: I’m going to have nightmares

not just because of the gay porn vibe

but because of the gay porn vibe and Wladimir Klitschko looking at me and saying, “David, you can’t run away from me forever.”

If he was calling out Tim Witherspoon, you’d feel the same way.

me: I like the “I will crush you” gesture at the end.

It covers up the fact that he will more likely jab you until you piss yourself.

David: He used his right hand more in those 90 seconds than he did in most of his past fights.

me: here’s another upgrade:

he is using more awesome trash talk

“bitched out” > “pizza face”

it’s like “pizza face” is the ultimate insult in the Ukraine or something. where as here it’s more of a taunt exchanged by pubescent 7th graders.

David: I always thought pizza face had something to do with acne.

me: yeah, exactly. but he was promising to give Haye a pizza face all day, 24/7.

David: Here’s the thing:

David Haye is a dish.

But not a pizza dish. Nor a pizza face.

me: what kind of dish?

David: The kind of dish that makes Wladimir Klitschko put together a video showing off his toned body.

Why can’t we get this passion out of Wlad when he fights?

me: to their credit, both those dudes are pretty jacked. i don’t think that it’s a coincidence there some of the best heavies.

David: He’s likable. I remember seeing him on Conan O’Brien a few years ago. Funny guy. Crossover appeal. Until he gets in the ring.

me: he talked about his boner on Conan. talk about nightmares.

David: Ah, yes. David Haye “beeched out.” and Wladimir Klitschko “peeched a tent.”

Those are unrelated statements, mind you.

me: can i agree with him some here? Haye did beech out. or flake out. something. anyway, it was Haye’s fault they didn’t fight.

David: Didn’t Haye claim injury?

Claim being the key word.

me: he did. i had no reason to doubt him until he then weaseled out of the Vitali fight, too.

then i was like, “wait a minute.”

and i’ve been very displeased by the conspiratorial bent so many people in boxing have had of late.

this? this struck me as two too many coincidences.

David: It’s hard to know what’s really going on. But it’s fair enough to say that Haye didn’t win any new fans by talking so much trash about the Klitschkos and then fighting neither.

Bait and switch.

me: He can’t avoid them much longer. He has to fight them, or one of them, and if he doesn’t nobody will take him seriously.

David: Kind of like getting the fans excited for Pacquiao-Mayweather and then delivering Pacquiao-Clottey instead

Except Pacquiao-Clottey still had more action than Valuev-Haye.

me: I don’t doubt for a second Wlad wants to stomp his ass. I’m less sure about Haye.

Good points.

David: Well, what else does Haye have ahead of him?

me: Haye did look great against Ruiz I thought.

Valuev rematch.

David: Valuev part 2? I’d rather watch Teen Wolf Part Two.

Less hair involved.

me: Arreola-Adamek winner.

Teen Wolf Part Two is a boxing movie. Don’t diss.

And I think Jason Bateman was in that. Bateman is awesome.

David: Haye did look good against Ruiz. And fights against Arreola or Adamek are dream bouts.

But two top European heavyweights. In a European venue.

Not only will you have HBO money from American airwaves, but tens of thousands of tickets sold and then domestic broadcast rights.

me: (P.S. Official title: “Teen Wolf Too”)

I read recently — don’t recall where — that HBO would be interested in the following Klitschko fights:


David: Oh, heaven forbid I don’t remember the ’80s too well. I’m not Goat Boy.

me: Wlad-Povetkin


I guess the last one would have a freak show element to it that would have some appeal. to some people.

the ring might collapse. they’d have to reinforce that sucker.

David: Undertaker vs. Brock Lesnar.

Excuse me. Big Show vs. Brock Lesnar.

me: I’m watching the best Wrestlemanias this weekend, by the way. having a little party at my place. should be fun.

David: I know my early-2000s wrestling about as well as I know my campy ’80s movies.

me: we went with hogan-giant, one of the hart wrestlemanias, and austin-rock. don’t tell me who won the second and third ones! i don’t know yet.

David: Ever see this? http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-K30gm2OFhY

me: thass freaking SWEET

David: I’m waiting for the day when boxing fans are made to chant: “Holy shit! Holy shit!”

me: boxing fans need to get better at chanting.

there’s basically Ricky Hatton, football chants… nothing else.

and i mean, European football

not Merican

wouldn’t it be better? it was like the idea to have music playing DURING the matches.

David: Those Popo Freitas fights in the Connecticut casinos were fun.

I’m tired of hearing about the number of Ricky Hattons.

me: there’s just the one.

David: I thought this was like Monty Python’s “The Meaning of Life.” I thought the answer was 42.

me: you’re thinking of Hitchhiker’s, no? anyway, boxing fans should imitate an old chant Duke fans chanted once for a, shall we say, plus-sized opposing player. “PLEASE-DON’T-EAT-US.” On Arreola.

David: Hm. I think I fell asleep before the end of “The Meaning of Life.” That explains it.

Great chant for Arreola. What about for Carl Froch?

“BRING YOUR WIFE OUT. (clap clap clapclapclap)”

me: For Clottey, we could do the “DIARRHEA” song

David: Clottey’s missing out on a Pepto Bismol sponsorship.

And totally ruined his existing Banku and Okro Stew sponsorship deal.

me: In a mere few seconds, we have already come up with an innovation that boxing needs to take up. Forget about USADA and so forth. Think of the chanting possibilities!

At Floyd: “I-R-S! I-R-S!”

David: At Manny Pac: “TAKE THE BLOOD TEST!”

me: Now you’re being even-handed for the sake of it.

At Manny, I would chant, “MAKE US HAPPY!” I do a great impression of Manny saying he fights to make the people happy. It doesn’t translate all that well to gchat.

David: On a side note, I wish Jinky would make like Ms. Pac-Man and wear a red ribbon.

me: HA!

David: And if I was truly to be evenhanded, we would counter Floyd’s “I-R-S! I-R-S!” with Mosley’s “E-P-O! E-P-O!”

me: Man, I don’t know what to make of that story about Shane today. Did you fully understand what he was saying?

I know he said he knew he was taking EPO, but when was it that he knew?

That’s pretty central.

If he said he knew at the time it was going in that it was EPO, then he so busted.

David: I wish it wasn’t edited the way it was edited. But that deposition made it seem like Mosley was begrudgingly admitting to knowingly taking EPO.

me: Right. That’s what it seemed like.

Made me nervous, though, how it was edited.

David: Well, there are two courts, and only one matters. The one that matters ain’t the court of public opinion.

me: And I think, as much as I doubt Shane’s cover story (look at me being all conspiratorial) we should maybe be careful about trusting Victor f’ing Conte.

David: Conte still brings up a good point.

Marion Jones.

We should be careful about trusting Jose Canseco, too, but Jose’s being hitting with such accuracy with his accusations that he could be back in the 40-40 club.

me: There’s no way we will know, barring an admission like Jones’, whether the “I didn’t know” story is right. It’s why it’s such a common story. But the fact that it’s such a common story makes it dubuious.

David: It’s a no-win situation.

Even when an athlete tells the truth, we question, be it Andy Pettite or Alex Rodriguez.

me: Yeah, Jose’s rep is bad but he’s been right a TON. Doubt the motives, certainly. Same with Conte. If Conte’s right, he’s right. I just don’t know if his editing skills are reliable.

David: Again. Court of public opinion.

The case files will have everything.

Including the transcript of the deposition, I’d imagine.

Though admittedly my legal reporting history hasn’t dealt with this kind of case.

Or with discovery materials.

me: I want to see that. Until then, I’m leaning that I don’t believe Mosley either way. But if the video reflects reality, it’s damning.

Because it means he didn’t only lie to us originally, it means his cover up story has been a lie, too.

David: This sport will be more difficult for us to get the truth than any other sport.

There is no central body. There is no move to test everybody. There is no move to test all the time.

And what if a fighter retires? Is he out of the testing jurisdiction until he comes back?

me: There’s this culture of lying that’s really tolerated, too. I’m guessing it’s why people are so frequently jumping to the conclusion that someone’s, you know, lying.

David: Maybe it’s high time we move to the All-Drug Olympics.


me: Oh i remember this now. That guy’s arms are coming OFF.

David: It’s a good thing Klitschko’s video didn’t end like this.

me: Which takes us back to the beginning: You have now given someone’s right arm for Popeye’s. Your Popeye’s should be in the mail.


About Tim Starks

Tim is the founder of The Queensberry Rules and co-founder of The Transnational Boxing Rankings Board (http://www.tbrb.org). He lives in Washington, D.C. He has written for the Guardian, Economist, New Republic, Chicago Tribune and more.