Wednesday, July 22, 2009

No Holds Barred: Johnny Bos on the Cruel Business of Boxing

On this edition of No Holds Barred, host Eddie Goldman speaks with the legendary fight agent and boxing personality, Johnny Bos.

There are few if any people alive who know more about boxing than Johnny Bos. But instead of prospering from that knowledge and wisdom, last year Johnny Bos, the quintessential New Yorker, had to leave this faded but still sometimes active center of boxing for a town not known for being a pugilistic capital: Clearwater, Florida. The main reason was that he could no longer find work in this alleged sport.

Johnny's fortunes in boxing seemed to head swiftly downhill after an incident whose consequences, ironically, brought him back to the Big Apple this week. His fighter, former world champion Joey Gamache, was slated to fight the late Arturo Gatti in Madison Square Garden Feb. 26, 2000. At the weigh-in the day before, however, Bos and many others said that Gatti hopped on and off the scale without making the contracted weight of 141 pounds. While he objected to this, officials from the New York State Athletic Commission declared that Gatti had indeed made weight, and that the fight was on.

Gatti, who reportedly weighed 160 pounds on an unofficial HBO scale the day of the bout, proceeded to score a brutal second-round knockout. Gamache had to be taken to a hospital after it, nearly died there that night, and suffers from permanent brain damage. His career, of course, was over, although he does still train fighters.

Gamache then sued the New York State Athletic Commission for negligence for allegedly permitting Gatti to fight well over the contracted weight. After years of legal wrangling, that case was finally heard this past week, and this was why Johnny Bos returned to New York, in an unusual role as a witness on behalf of Joey Gamache.

We had a chance while he was still in New York, and after the trial itself was over, to speak with Johnny Bos. (A verdict by the trial judge is expected in several months.)

In our lengthy discussion, Johnny explained what went on at this botched weigh-in, how it affected the Gatti-Gamache fight, and what it all indicated about the quality of the regulation of boxing. He also gave us some ideas on what major changes are needed in boxing, and just who may be starting to make them. And, as always, he did so in a style and tone reflective of the long gone glory days of boxing in America.

So join us on this edition of No Holds Barred for a rare behind-the-scenes look at what really goes on in the world of boxing.

You can play or download No Holds Barred here. You can also download No Holds Barred here. If one link does not work, please try another. The show is in MP3 format, so may take some time to download.

The No Holds Barred theme song is called "The Heist", by Ian Carpenter.

Make sure to visit the official boxing forum for No Holds Barred, the MySpace Boxing Forum.

No Holds Barred is free to listen to and is sponsored by:

Gladiator Magazine, for in-depth coverage of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, submission grappling, and MMA, as well as lifestyle articles on surfing, cars, movies, and more. Gladiator Magazine is available at any major bookstore and online at or Jiu Jitsu Pro Gear.

American Top Team. Whether you're a beginner or a champion, train with the champions in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, boxing, wrestling, grappling, and mixed martial arts at American Top Team. Check out their web site at, your premier source for all Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu gear, videos, books, and much more.

Wrestling 411, providing coverage of the sport of wrestling on TV, the Internet, and radio. Wrestling 411 is produced by Media Sports Productions, whose sole mission is the marketing and promotion of the sport of wrestling., for news, results, interviews, and free exclusive videos from the worlds of boxing and mixed martial arts.

Labels: , , , , , , ,