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Category: Rants

Mr. Gary Russell Jr. Handling his Business

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Mr. Gary Russell Jr. - http://facebook.com/pages/Gary-Russell-Jr/102035963184348Being a Steelers fan of the late ’70s into the ’80s, hard-nosed defense is what I like.

Being a fan of the underdog, and hard-nosed running, the Redskins’ Doug Williams and John Riggins come to mind…

Mr. Gary Russell Jr. is a classy, well-groomed Prize fighter out of the Maryland-D.C. area, and I think he resembles both of these teams with a touch of the Dallas Cowboys of the ’90s, along with the modern-day, gritty, dirty birds of Baltimore – Ray Lewis and those Championship Ravens.

Gary Russell Jr. is speed, power, a touch of pizazz, with a lot of – even though it’s not shown in public – that “dog” in him.

Read article: Critics Question Quality of Gary Russell Jr.’s Boxing Opponents

His last fight displayed his defensive genius. It reminded me of Marshall Faulk’s coming-out performance against the university of Hawaii in ’91-’92, when he scored 7 touchdowns, and all the critics said was, “But it was against Hawaii,” disregarded he came off the bench as a freshman. He is a soon-to-be Hall-of-Famer. He is a multiple Superbowl champion, I believe, and is currently a well-spoken commentator in his previous profession, which is football. (Have you heard Mr. Gary Russell Jr. speak as of late? He is very well-versed.)

What I’m saying is, men like Al Haymon and Oscar de la Hoya, and Gary Russell Sr. see the prestige of the athlete. Unlike Doug Williams, unfortunately, who won the Superbowl and was the M.V.P., the very next year, was traded.

Gary has a life after Boxing, yet still in Boxing. His skill in the ring, hasn’t been rushed because there is no need to pawn in the “cash-cow”. He doesn’t need gimmicks like Manny Pacquiao did. He doesn’t need to be loud and rambunctious like Adrien Broner because of his amateur pedigree. At the end of the day, this is business. Mr. Gary Russell Jr. makes for good business.

He has been ready for world-class, and has been fighting world-class, such as the “Gamboas,” since he was 17 and traveling the world.

Personally knowing Gary, if it were up to him, he would try and unify every belt from every weight division, from every champion because he is truly a fighter that wants to be the best. This is where great management, great team, great coaching, in a word, handling comes into effect, saving the athlete from themselves.

As Mr. Russell Sr. said,

“There is no need for him to dance around, and jump around after a knockout or a win. He is doing what he is trained to do.”

Gary is a throwback of old Motown artists, in that they would be groomed and nurtured before stardom – The Jackson 5s, Diana Ross & the Supremes. If you know Al Haymon, which most of us don’t, then you would know why, what, and where Gary Russell Jr. is about to blossom.

Intelligent men make intelligent moves. If you ever wonder how Mayweather went from being a $2 million fighter a bout, into a $50 million+ fighter a bout, look at the company that has chosen Mayweather as client and friend. Then, look at who Mr. Gary Russell Jr. has also been befriended by, as far as business movements go.

As far as the opponents go, Mr. Russell Jr. has done what others we call great fighters have done. He was a 118 lb fighter at the Olympics. He has been campaigning at 126 lbs, has looked to fight at 130 lbs, and is willing to go down to 122 lbs to challenge and make a super fight with Donaire, so the talk is.

The next few opponents, I think, for Gary Russell Jr., should go as such:

  • A durable, competitive fighter to test his hands.
  • Depending upon the recovery of his recent hand injury from fight with Vyacheslav Gusev on Mar. 2nd, a title fight.
  • A title fight, again pending recovery of his hand injury…who he fights at this point is irrelevant because everyone knows how the fight will go. You have to press Gary Russell Jr. You cannot out-speed him. Ultimately, everyone wants to see, which they haven’t seen yet, which those who really, truly know Gary Russell Jr., already know that dog, that mean-streak, that “killer”, and the person who presses him will find that out. We will all have our final answers to the Gary Russell Jr. “question”.

Boxing is about T.E.A.M., “Together Eliminating All Mistakes.”  That being said, don’t look for Gary Russell Jr. to take any losses any time soon, due to both his skill and his T.E.A.M., and his team’s skill.

This is B.A.M.


Critics Question Quality of Gary Russell Jr.’s Boxing Opponents?

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GaryRussellJrJamieWorldChampsDespite Mr. Gary Russell Jr.‘s fresh victory over Vyacheslav Gusev on Mar. 2nd, 2013, some critics question the quality of the opponents he has recently been fighting.

Gary did not make weigh-ins at the 2008 Olympics. This is a key point when looking at this topic because his father was not the main person preparing him for the Games. Since then, Gary has been with his father and has made weight for every fight.

Mr. Russell Jr.’s last 3 opponents all had winning records. What we are looking at is another Michael Jordan, Larry Bird or Magic Johnson in caliber of athlete. Guys like this did not need an opponent to make them great. They stayed self motivated. So, it didn’t matter if they were fighting the worst, or playing the worst, or the best; they always came out their best, and performed at their best. That’s what Gary Russell Jr. does.

So, we are always looking for someone to test them, so we can be sure they are as good as we see they are. Gary’s greatest asset is he loves being in the gym with his family, and his family loves being in the gym with him. That is their sanctuary…the place they receive joy! So, the question shouldn’t be, can he beat these champions that hold belts right now. The question is, “Will these champions be able to stay motivated long enough to be champions when Gary’s ready to test them?”

If you haven’t seen Mr. Russell in action, imagine Barry Sanders running the ball, Usain Bolt running the 100 meter dash, and Mike Tyson catching Trevor Berbick to become the youngest heavyweight champion of all time, accompanied by the genius of Tiger Woods’ placement in his long-game, “collaged” into one Super-Athlete…You have Mr. Gary Russell Jr..

Great performers aren’t just born, they are nurtured and cultivated. Mr. Gary Russell Sr. has done, is doing, and I believe will continue being the “agriculturalist” that will bring Gary Jr. to his full potential, and I believe that exceeds being a World Champion. The kid has the potential to be one of the best who “ever done it.” How do I know this? Because all of those ever considered, or are known to be the best who had ever done it, always had critics trying to find someone to test them. Just like Mr. Gary Russell Jr.

Therefore, take note to your Blessings and your Joy of Mr. Russell Jr., and his dad, and brothers, to be enjoyed…to be viewed for your pleasure.

This is B.A.M.

Author: James Phelps

Adrian Peterson: Raised by Love & Loyalty

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AdrianPetersonFatherPeople find it hard to believe that Adrian Peterson has had this astonishing comeback and recovery, accompanied with a great season.

When you know who a person is and where they come from, and how they were raised, answers to questions often appear to be obvious.

I read that when he was in school, Adrian Peterson…that is, his university coach, a highly respected man, had advised him to stay away from his father when he got out of prison.

In a way, I can see why the man said what he said, but I also understood the man wasn’t from or raised the way his superstar running back had been raised.

A man should never tell another man to turn his back on his father. That was his mistake…

…His father was the reason he was who he is, both physically and mentally. Without his father, his coach wouldn’t have had the success and accolades he had with Adrian’s career at Oklahoma.

This is what loyalty and love raises…Champions in life, to his team, to his teammates, to his coaches, to his community, to his family, and most of all, to himself.

Is his comeback really that surprising? I think not.

Once again, God is demonstrating the foundation of family through trial, scrutiny and exile. Real Family, real Love, real Loyalty will always prevail.

This is B.A.M.


The Coming of the Snow: Physical Fitness & Mother Nature

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Snow-BonnieHarrisGoing to school in California, in certain places, you can see the mountains and snow…

It often made me think about or remind me of Belvedere Hill in Quebec that we would walk up everyday to go to school.  The snow was so pure, pretty, but it was a test of will.

The snow reminded me of being a teen in Rochester, NY wearing a bubble jacket and some “Tims” hanging in the staircases in Gateway…

The snow reminded me of being a youth in Niagara Falls, Canada playing street football with no jacket, street lights on…where the sidewalks of Armoury St., at least 6 days a week, turned into screaming stands of Pasadena’s Rose Bowl Stadium.

Snow has always been a stimuli where the air is fresh & brisk, it’s difficult to run in…

…This makes it a great workout too. It’s great for strength, balance, conditioning and builds your lung strength & capacity. You’ll never find anything better than nature.

People often state that it’s genetics that allow myself to be agile, quick and durable. To me, that’s only 10% of the equation.

I tend to believe that the elements that Mother Nature provides us with, played a much bigger part in my physical & mental development.

When it’s 2nd & 10, and you realize you’re covering the fastest dude on the field, and you still have 59 minutes to play the game…the snow is deep, thick, heavy, slick, unknowing, and everyone is on the banks watching to see how you’re going to maneuver, survive or excel, this is where and how character is built.

The snow built me for the heat of California.

Go on and enjoy that snow out there!

This is B.A.M.


Hope you enjoyed this Rant on B.A.M. Niagara Boxing.

photo: Bonnie Harris

Observations of Eating Over the Holidays

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HolidayGoodiesThis Holiday season, I have been observing how I eat, and how people eat in general during holidays like this.

For instance, I attended a family gathering where the food looked and smelled amazing. I’m sure it tasted wonderful too, but I didn’t partake in enjoying the food by tasting it. Why? Well, my body just didn’t really feel like it.

Conversely, some people get so down on themselves and others, and are so worried about overeating over the Holidays. What I want to tell you is this…

…Your body will only physically take in what it is able to take in. Food is energy, and we need energy.  You are in the “positive” or the “green” when you take in that energy from food. We need energy to perform everyday body functions, and activities.

RoastedTurkey2010Furthermore, when you’re gathering with family and loved ones over the Holidays, and this may be most important of all, you’re also soaking in that positive energy from them. So, it’s all good.

What we all need to remember, then, is that we should burn the extra fuel or energy off.

It is possible to enjoy the Holidays, with family, with food, and take it all in…but just take care afterward too.

This is B.A.M.!