When you think Don King, you immediately think: tiny American flags, boxing, flash, crazy-ass hair, and pizzazz (and let's face it, how often does something conjure up "pizzazz" just by looking at it?)
But lately, the sheen on the Don (or is it The King?) has begun to wear down, as pointed out by our sister alt weekly, Riverfront Times, in a piece about the boxing promoter's epic fail as a boxing promoter.
Ryan "The Irish Outlaw" Coyne was set and ready for his title fight -- the one thing every boxer dreams of and aspires to.
And when you have Don King in your corner, things are supposed to be monkeys and balloons and roses and sunshine.
If only this were 1991.
Coyne was booted from the fight days before it was supposed to go down and was subsequently tagged with litigation and lawyers and things a boxer isn't supposed to be fighting.
King ganked Coyne of not only a title shot but of his life-long dreams (not to mention the legal fees he's going to have to pony up), according to the Irish Outlaw.
The two are now squaring off in court.
And, as it goes, King looks like the favorite to win this bout, which is screwed up on so many levels.
In 2000, Senator John McCain's Muhammad Ali Boxing Reform Act added language to existing federal law meant to protect fighters from exploitative promoters. And though his name is nowhere in the language of the bill, the kinds of abuses enumerated in the act have Don King written all over them. The law makes it illegal for a promoter to also act as a boxer's manager; it also forces promoters to give fighters a detailed breakdown of the costs and payout of a bout before the match takes place. The act, however, has proven to be utterly toothless. To this day, not a single case has been prosecuted under the law.
It's a fascinating and tragic look into the seedy world of boxing, promoting, meaningless laws, and another showcase of how the sport is just riddled with corrupt and greedy dudes like King.
Only in America!
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