My favorite boxing quotes; some witty, some insightful, some just plain stupid.
“Lay down so I can recognize you” – Willie Pep to some guy claiming to be one of his opponents.
“I try not to take too close an interest in my personal life.” – Mike Tyson when asked about his failed relationship with Robin Givens.
“He’s a diamond in the raw.” – Don King about Mike Tyson; yet another incoherent mixed metaphor.
“It’s better to deal with Arum, he will only rob you.” – Steve Wynn of the Mirage, on dealing with Bob Arum and Don King.
“What’s the point of being Irish if you can’t be stupid?” – Billy Conn on why he chose to trade with Joe Louis despite the fact he was leading on the score cards.
“I swear I didn’t see anything.” – Jake La Motta after being approached by a Jehovah’s Witness who tried to force on him a copy of the Watchtower, asking “Would you like to witness for Jehovah?”
“You need to understand, his business involves using your hands, and he likes to bounce around a lot.” – Hector Camacho’s lawyer trying to explain why the Macho Man assaulted two police officers while resisting arrest.
“How did you expect to hold it for six months when you couldn’t hold it for 13 rounds” – Joe Louis to Billy Conn, after Conn said to Louis: “Joe, why didn’t you let me have the title, I could have run down to the corner store and told my guys, ‘hey I’m heavyweight champion of the world’, and then you could have won it back from me six months later.”
“A bike, a purse, a car” – Rocky Graziano explaining how in his youth he stole only things that began with the letter “A”
“Honey, I forgot to duck.” – Jack Dempsey after the first Tunney fight, trying to explain his face to his wife Estelle Taylor.
“He can run, but he can’t hide.” – Joe Louis on his fight with Billy Conn, after Conn announced he wouldn’t bulk-up for the fight, but would instead use his speed to befuddle the champ.
“Boxing is like a ballet, except there’s no music, no dancing, and people hit each other” – Saturday Night Live’s ‘Deep Thoughts.’
“I can lick any son of a bitch in the house.” – The Great John L. Sullivan in just about any room he ever walked in to.
“Whomever he fights has a home planet advantage” – A sports’ writer trying to explain Livingstone Bramble.
“When I see two ladies kiss hello, I always think of two fighters touching gloves.” – H.L. Mencken
“I had the best seat in the house, and I failed to show up.” – Virgil Hill on why he lost his title to Tommy ‘Hit Man’ Hearns.
“See this one, this one is six months in the hospital – this one, sudden death” – My Uncle Tom (Tommy Johnson) half yelling at us for screwing around when we were kids. First he would show us his left fist, and then show us his right.