Thursday, February 19, 2009

Styles Make Fights Part 1

Dear Friends of Boxing,

There is an adage in boxing that styles make fights. What does this mean? The style that each boxer has in a fight determines the tempo, activity, and even the probable outcome. I use the word "probable" for two reasons. As in any rule, there are exceptions to that rule. Secondly, there are several factors which must come into play before the rule has any consistency to it. I'll get to these factors below.

To better explain styles, I'll use some examples. Winky Wright is the prototypical boxer. Focusing more on defense and counter-punching, with a good jab and good foot movement, boxers can put you asleep, not with their power but with their boring style. Shane Mosley is the prototypical power-boxer. Focusing on power punches, this boxer also has the foot work and speed to get the respect of his opponent and often knock the opponent out in an exciting way. Oscar de la Hoya is the prototypical puncher. Focusing on the power and quality of their power shots these boxers often have less than average defense and basic footwork. Jorge Arce is the typical brawler. Whether or not they have the power or defense to do so, these boxers get in close and bang away until either they or their opponent falls. Obviously there is more to the analysis, but you get the point.

So what style wins over another? For a consistent answer --that is, one that makes sense over time, several factors must first be met. Age and experience must be basically equal (experience more important) as well as activity and preparation. Basically if you are too young or old or inexperienced or inactive or ill-prepared relative to your opponent, styles don't mean as much.

Part 2 of this post to follow soon. Add this blog to your reader.

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