Sunday, October 16, 2011

Hopkins - Dawson, a disgrace in the sport of Boxing


Before I start, I want to thank everyone who have read my posts or those who stumbled into my blog. This blog has just reached its 6000 mark and I'm very thankful to everyone.

Now, I have just watched the recent clash between Bernard "The Executioner" Hopkins and "Bad" Chad Dawson. I was in a very relaxed and almost getting into bed until I was enraged with what I saw. Bernard Hopkins, known to be the oldest World Boxing Champion was supposed to defend his Light Heavyweight Championship belt after winning convincingly against Jean Pascal. Chad Dawson on the other hand, had a loss against Pascal, and is now into his comeback into regaining the Championship that was once his. That was the template of the match-up so far, entering into the match. The earlier fights were great, but this fight spoiled everything.

The early rounds were a toss-up. Chad Dawson using range and spearing his punches into Hopkins. The older Hopkins, looked to get Dawson into a hold and hammering him on a semi-clinch. Dawson looked frustrated as he was unable to hit Hopkins on the inside, because he immediately clinches. Ultimately, as Hopkins got close to Dawson on round two, Dawson immediately lifts Hopkins and throws him down on the canvass. Bernard Hopkins clearly unable to continue, as he may have dislocated his left shoulder after being thrown. The referee warns to give a Technical Knock-out if Bernard was unable to continue, which he did. Chad Dawson wins by Technical Knock-out by round two.

I thought this match was the most craziest thing I have seen in boxing. The Mayweather-Ortiz fight was alright, but the Hopkins-Dawson? Come on. I would have understood if Mike Tyson would bite the ears of Holyfield again, but that is not the point. I have seen the imperfections in the sport of boxing, and to some extent, I have come to enjoy them. Just like when a slip gets called a knock-down or a knock-down turns into a slip. This is what a champion faces in the ring, and he must appear to be unfazed by it, and overcome obstacles.

In the case of the Hopkins-Dawson showdown. I was very disappointed. I mean, you could use the privilege to judge a knock-down without the replays, but to judge a fight because you were not sure what just happened? That to me, is an abuse of privilege, and things must change in boxing as well. I also would like to give emphasis, that this is BOXING, not MMA. Take-downs are not a part of boxing, and if you ask me, you are not supposed to judge the fight as a TKO with that. It almost looked more of an MMA bout rather than a boxing match.

This is what kills boxing.. what destroys it, and I don't want to be put up to this pressure. I too, am an aspiring fighter, and with the kind of reputation that boxing builds today, it makes me have serious doubts if I would be interested to get inside a sport with so much confusion and issues. It all comes down to the judgment of the referee. For me, personally, I blame the ref' for that wrong call. I could pass out a loosely judged knock-out, but to decide the fight is over on a take-down? You must be out of your freaking mind.

The people who watched the fight know that this fight should be judged as a No Contest rather than a Technical Knock-out. People who watched the fight must be really disappointed too, since they paid a fortune to get their seats into this fight, but it ended up short and disappointing. To state it, overall, it sucks! I would want it to be called a No Contest, and let them have a rematch, not because they need it or want it, but for the honor of boxing. It's hard to win fans back into boxing when this sort of things happen.

My Proposal:
It is high time that we should change certain aspects in the sport of boxing. In the old times, fighters would go unlimited rounds until one quits. It changes, and rounds would reach until fifteen. After the death of Duk Koo Kim in their match with Ray Mancini, championship rounds were then cut to twelve. What I want to propose, is the use of replays in boxing matches. For the longest time in sports history, boxing is a sport that do not rely on replays, they resort to the referee's judgment.

It affects all common sense. This is the age of  High Definition LCD screens, Cyber-internet communication, Digital-age, and a lot. Times have past, and so, the sport of boxing must adapt to it as well. I mean, why should we continue with the old? when common sense tells us, there is a replay. This is high time for change, especially with the Bernard Hopkins and Chad Dawson debacle. It just kills the sport, if we are blindly going out through our ways. I know it must be a miracle for me to give everyone a heads-up, I'm just a blogger, but I am a person too, and I say my opinions when things get ugly.

Picture: Bernard Hopkins after a take-down from Chad Dawson.

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Learn how to "Berserk"

We all know what it means, or do we not?

According to Wikipedia, Berserk is..

"A status effect in a variety of role-playing games, which generally causes the affected individual to attack recklessly and with increased power, and with no concern for personal safety or the safety of the individual's party." (

You would wonder, why in the world am I talking about role-playing games? What is its relation to the sport of boxing, or fighting, in general?

It all happened when I rested in my bed while listening to some feel-good music, that practically, of course. makes me feel great. I was full of optimism, as if nothing in life could ever go wrong. I felt carefree and body felt so light like the great feeling I have is taking me so high. It was a relaxing evening. As I switched my feel-good music to some angry work-out music, there was some change that occurred inside of me. I somehow felt alerted, and seemingly pulling out the inner warrior inside of me. Almost as if a dose of adrenaline is jacked into my system gradually. The once was a relaxing and happy mood, turned into a temporary feeling of aggressiveness and inner heaviness that felt as if consisted with hate, anger, revenge, intertwined in one. It builds up inside of your chest making it feel heavy. I call this the "Berserk Effect."

The term "berserk" is known to me, for I too have been a gamer. I then realized that this must be the same thing, although in reality rather than in fictional games. The feeling is really quite extraordinary, its as if you want to do something and release what is inside. For me, I release tension through displacement and sublimation, and that is why I get a good work-out in the punching bag. I relieve stress through it. I guess, the feeling of "berserk", may as well vary among people. People are used to using other coping strategies to get over stress, but for me, as a fighter, I fight. It must be true to some fighters too who are using this feeling of being berserk and using it in order to be a more effective fighter.

After feeling "berserk" for a couple of minutes, it felt very inconvenient for me for it happened at night. I can't train on the heavy bag especially when people are sleeping, because it makes a loud thudding sound every time I train. So I relieved my stress through deep-breathing exercises, think of happy thoughts, and listened back to the feel-good music. It went away in a few minutes, and I feel lighter after I relieved myself from it. The heaviness dissipated into emptiness, and I gradually put myself back into feeling great. I had to share it, because when I train, I feel more energy, passion, and determination when I feel "berserk", in comparison to training without it. There must be this aspect that makes fighters look invincible, because the feeling they have  inside them, helped brought about the greatness in their performance.

How to be in the Berserk state?
Few of the things I've experienced through training, taught me how to unleash the inner warrior inside of us, in seconds. Just remember though, that there are some serious consequences when you are in this state. So I discourage people who are using this in a bad way, but I do encourage it in sports. It makes you work harder, train harder, and play harder.

3 ways to Unleashing the inner Warrior:

1. When you feel hatred or anger towards anything around you. You usually feel Berserk in an instant. This is the long-term type of effect. As you resolve your issues this feeling will gradually subside, but its long-term effects make it very suitable for people who want to lose weight or build muscles. You will get in a somewhat, possessed state, like a warrior spirit has taken over your body. Take advantage of it and exercise. You will surely reach lengths you never thought you could.

2. Watch some boxing, wrestling, mixed martial arts, or etc. This will bring you in the mood to fight. Although it is not as powerful as a full berserk, this feeling is a somewhat, easy, small, and a safe dose from your regular berserk. You don't need to feel angry. All you have to do is bring yourself in the same wavelength of the fighters mindset, and Bingo!, you got it. Onset is slow, but effect varies until interest subsides. Intensity is also lesser.

3. Listen to pump-up music (Berserking). Preferably something that makes you feel aggressive. Position yourself into controlling your actions, as you listen to the music. Your unexpressed feelings will slowly build inside of you, like a volcano ready to explode. When the feeling is too much, you will feel like unleashing it, and that is the right time to do it. You get the full berserk, but effect is temporary. You build up about five minutes, and explode for ten minutes or more.

How to relieve the Berserk State*:

1. Do some INTENSE exercises. Small exercises won't work. Use displacement and sublimation and destroy the heavy bag. Go out and do some running, not jogging. It depends in what kind of exercise you want as long as its intense.

2. Shout, sing, talk, or etc. It is the verbal manifestation of your unexpressed feelings, thus, it works. Talk to a friend and express yourself. The more you express yourself, the more the feeling will be gone.

3. Listen to feel-good music. This is a mechanism called sublimation. You change your focus to a less-stressful stimuli.

4. Think good thoughts. Positive thinking kills the negative emotions.

5. Eat Serotonin-rich food. Serotonin is a neurotransmitter released in the body to give us the feeling of happiness and well-being. Serotonin-rich food includes: chocolates and bananas.

*Of course, there are lots of ways to relieve stress. It's in the science of psychology.

Berserking is a powerful yet dangerous tool. It must be used with caution. People who stay berserk would appear dysfunctional in the society, and that is why it must be used only in certain situations, like in sports. I have seen fighters who use this to their advantage, although successful, they have failed to return to being functional human beings. They tend to be aggressive in the society, breaks up rules, and do all the bad things we don't want to happen. Again, being berserk is a risk. You may end up hurting your loved ones if you did not learn to control it. A person who is practitioner on this must learn to not only bring himself to the state, but more importantly, learn to let it go.

One thing, being berserk is one way of bringing you into that adrenaline rush, or what I call, "The Zone." That feeling of being superhuman, is unavoidable.

Formula for Adrenaline Rush:
Berserk + Training = Endorphin + Adrenaline = 
The Zone/Adrenaline Rush = Temporary Superhuman

This is one reason why training is addicting, because you get a high into it. A natural high, without side effects. But of course, too much is too bad. Your body may get used to all these endorphin and adrenaline, that once you stop training, you will have a withdrawal symptom. Depression. So be careful, and use at your own risk. It's best to gradually stop training, rather than instantly stopping it. Let your body adapt to its internal and external changes.