When Boxing Trainers Get Really Mad

Boxing is a sport filled with emotions for everyone involved, especially the fighters themselves and their trainers. It’s not unusual to see boxing trainers get mad and frustrated either at their own pupil or referees. Here are some incidents where boxing trainers get really mad.

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1) John David Jackson – “Where’s the Hook!?

During the fight that many considered to be a ‘snorefest’, Randall Bailey vs Mike Jones, Bailey’s trainer erupted with anger in his corner because of the lack of punches thrown specifically the straight right-left hook combination that they had been working on during training.

The undefeated Jones who had never been knocked down or out as an amateur or professional, came into the fight as a heavy favourite, while Bailey was 37 and was way past his glory days.

Bailey was trailing behind massively on the scorecards but in the 10th round, he produced a classic one-two (jab-straight right) combination that sent Jones flying backwards onto the canvas. Although Jones got up steadily, it was a sign of things to come, as in the following round, Bailey let loose a monstrous uppercut underneath Jones’ jab, and again, sent him flying back.

However, this time, no matter how hard he tried to get back up, his legs were like jelly and kept falling back down which prompted the referee to stop the fight. John David Jackson and his team must have really tore into Bailey in between rounds to produce such a terrific knock out.

2) Teddy Atlas Goes off on His Pupil Michael Moorer

Talented and hard punching Michael Moorer had dominated the Light Heavyweight division and was going up to Heavyweight to win a world title. His opponent was none other than the legendary Evander Holyfield. Moorer was said to have had emotional issues and often walked out during training sessions.

Teddy Atlas was hired by Moorer just before his heavyweight title shot, and he witnessed first-hand what previous trainers had already known.

Come fight night, after being knocked down in the 2nd round, Moorer seemed uninterested and detached from the fight. Atlas had to instil some urgency to his fighter and proceeded to give him a speech after each round. Bit by bit, energy and confidence was restored and Moorer won the title in a close contest, and became the first southpaw to ever win a Heavyweight world title.

3) Teddy Atlas Pushes George Foreman

Following Michael Moorer’s victory over Evander Holyfield, he held the World Heavyweight title and had the world at his feet. His first title defense was against 45 year old George Foreman.

Foreman was a force to be reckoned with in his prime, in an era with so many great Heavyweights including Muhammad Ali and Joe Frazier. However, at 45 years of age, many felt he was too old and too slow of Moorer.

In the build-up to the fight, Atlas felt disrespected and annoyed that Foreman was given a title shot based on his name and history.

During a press conference for the fight, Atlas was further angered that Foreman didn’t seem bothered or threatened by the fight itself, so he walked over to Foreman who was sitting, and pushed and shouted at him to get a response. Foreman’s response? “go get me a sandwich and sit down”, classic.

Come fight night, Moorer outboxed Foreman for the entire fight, with Foreman seemingly unable to “pull the trigger”…then came the 10th round. Out of nowhere, Foreman unleashed a powerful right hand that gashed opened Moorer’s bottom lip and knocked him out. At 45, Foreman made history and became the oldest fighter to ever win a Heavyweight title.

4) Norman “Stoney” Stone Flies Into a Rage

Norman Stone the former trainer, cutman and manager of John “The Quiet Man” Ruiz is infamous for his outbursts during and after fights.

The Vietnam War veteran Stone, was part of the Ruiz camp for his fight against all-time great Roy Jones Jr, who was aiming to become the first former Middleweight Champion to win a Heavyweight title in 106 years. Before the fight even started, he got into a brawl at the press conference with Jones’ trainer  ended up in hospital as a result.

On fight night, Jones was naturally the smaller man knew he couldn’t fight toe-to-toe so he opted to ‘stick and move’, and hold wherever necessary.

Stone knew that Ruiz was behind on the scorecards and after each round, he shouted and pushed Ruiz to press the action. He even verbally abused the referee because of what he felt was excessive holding by Jones.

At the end of the fight, Stone approached the referee only to be held back by security. This wouldn’t have made a difference though, as Jones won the fight and made history.

5) Norman “Stoney” Stone – “I’m starting to think that this is a fucking fixed fight Don

In another episode of Stone’s wild antics as a boxing trainer, he managed to get himself suspended for 60 days during Ruiz’s fight with Andrew Golota. The Polish fighter based in Chicago, Golota is notorious for his dirty tactics during fights and combined with Ruiz’s no nonsense attitude and Stone’s eccentric behavious, it’s not a good combination.

The fight was filled with fouling and unsportsmanlike incidents. Stone would use any chance he could get to verbally abuse the referee, Randy Newman. When Newman called for a break because Ruiz’s glove tape was loose for the 2nd time in the fight, Stone called him a “fucking jerkoff”. It was the last straw for Newman so he sent Stone off with security escorting him.

On the way back to the locker room, Stone was heard saying to Ruiz’s promoter Don King, “I’m starting to think that this is a fucking fixed fight Don” . It’s ironic to say the least as King is infamous for suspected fight fixing.

As Stone watched the fight from the locker room, his occasional outbursts was shown to the viewing public. Ruiz went on to win the fight, and there was finally a smile on Stone’s face.


To get the most out of your training, I highly recommend the following articles:

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