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January 27, 2012

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Page16 BOSTON POST-GAZETTE, JANUARY 27, 2012 00-00ORNER TALK by Ro,n00l00o Jr. "Fighters are the Best!" "Boxers & Mixed Martial Artist!" Make Reservations for June 7-10 th, Rip Valenti to be Inducted into the World Boxing Hall of Fame Along with Freddie Roach and Jake Kilrain in Canastota, New York A Message to New England Promoters with Fight Teams Great Work and Compliments to Dan Couco, I.B.R.O. and Staff. "Fight Family Happy Birthdays!" There'd be More "Fights! & Fighters!" Sucra Ray Oliveira. He's a many time champion. IBF Inter- Continental Light-welterweight Champion, NABF Light-welterweight Champion and IBU Welterweight champion with son and budding prospect Ray Jr. I'm watching U.F.C., Mixed Martial Arts fights. January 14, 2012 in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. These fights were very entertaining. A fight that really caught my atten- tion was a bout between M.M.A. Fighter Gabriel Gonzaga of Ludlow, MA bat- tling a guy called Ednaldo Oliveira. Something about that name? "DingI" Heavy- weight Gabriel Gonzaga is rough and tough. Defeating Oliveira in an action packed bout. In another great battle, Yuri Alcantara defeated Michihiro Omigawa. International World of Boxing Hall of Fame Inductee Rip Valenti. One of the greatest pro- moters in professional box- ing history is Rip Valenti, who is being inducted into The International-World Boxing Hall of Fame in Canastota, New York, June 7- I0 th. Remember to keep those dates open to honor this great promoter. I would like for US, to get together, discuss and ana- lyze ideas. At the end of sea- sonal years. Have Award Banquets. That's right. Ban- quets with an "S", each gym representing their town, city or league can have their own celebration, to pay tribute to their accomplishments. Then league or division championship banquets. Team and individual recog- nition. Also a league ban- quet in cities or towns of the championship team. Kind of a framework for this idea, is in the next paragraph. "Ding!" Let's discuss the idea of "Fight-Teams" in New En- gland. Many fight teams can exist. Where would you want your team? Who knows, where else teams might de- velop? Different leagues. There's plenty of other rough tough cities and towns in New England. Some areas might have two or three gyms. Think about it? My Compliments to Dan Cuoco, I.B,R.O,, and staff. I'm looking at information published by I.B.R.O. They've done a great job. Check Denis Marrese, Juan "Butcherboy" Botta, World Champion Tony DeMarco, Joe Angelo and Tony Petronelli. That's Matt Troiani. them out. Pound for pound rankings, Rankings of all weight classes and many other researched informa- tion. They're great and infor- mative. World Champion Tony DeMarco and wife Dottie recently arrived back in Boston from their trip to Florida. World Champion Tony DeMarco said they had a great time and attended the Golden Glove fights in Florida. Great gentlemen Bill Spadafora was in Florida too. Fight photographer and Fight Family member Rich- ard Hand advised me of an upcoming function by the Brockton Historical Society in Celebrating History on Sunday, February 12% More information to follow. On May 19  at Foxwoods, Denis Marrese will have "Battle of the Badges." Many tough guys with badges wear and have worn law enforcement and fire uniforms with badges: "Bob Benoit. Paul Doyle, Leo Gerstel, Sean Gannon, Gerry Grealish, Johnny Hasson, Anthony Lamonica, Danny Long, Patrick Long, Jim McNally, World Cham- pion Paul Pender, Tyrone Smith and Tim Stanton." I did too. Ding! 1981 to 2001. Fight Family Happy Birthdays: January 14 th World Champion Tony DeMareo and Ed Imondi; 15 th Michael George and Honey Melody; 16 th Juan "Butcher Boy" Botta and Matt Godfrey; 17 th World Heavy- weight Champion Muham- mad AIi; 17 th Missy Fioren- tino; 22 nd Peter Santoro; 27 th Bobby Franklin and Bob Hanna; February 2 nd Rich Cappiello; 9 th Jake Kilrain; 10 th Bob Treiger; II  Jerry Colton; 12 th Mark DeLuca, Jr., and Sam Langford; 13 th Ray DeLicio; 19 th Mugsy Mullen; 20 th Charlie Tartaglia; 21 st Bobby Gould and Tom McNeeley. *Fights January 28 th -- Brian Minto vs. Tony Grano in Oneida, New York. He gazed down upon it, he did, surveying the domain that he once roamed. It was so near, yet so far away. Not only in space but in time. Had it really been a year? Yes, for Marc Savard it has been twelve long months since he last graced the ice at the TD Garden as an ac- tive player with the Bruins. But now, seated in a luxury suite about 100 feet above the playing level, that was the closest he could come to an NHL game in progress, to a sport he loved. For it was on January 22, 2011 that the B's center suf- fered a concussion -- his sec- ond in 10 months in a game against the Colorado Avalanche. The fact that it was delivered by former Bruin Matt Hunwick only made the scenario worse. It probably was the last game for the man who scored 207 goals and amassed 706 points in 807 contests over 14 NHL seasons. The shot followed a similar situation on March 7, 2010 when he took a severe hit from Matt Cooke in a game against Pittsburgh. And, in a lengthy press conference, Savard revealed there prob- ably was a third instance. "I don't think the Colorado hit was bad but there was a hit a week before that in a home game against Pitts- burgh. He (Deryk Engelland) hit me in the corner and he just got my head. I was a little rattled from that." The hit in Colorado came a week later. He went to Colo- rado and it wasn't that severe of a hit. "I think it had to do with the hit I received the week before more than any- thing and it just kind of set me way back. And then, obviously the first hit was horrible. Those were some really tough days." The shots, coming so fairly close together, have for all intents and purposes ended the Ottawa native's playing career. Bruins GM Peter Chiarelli put it succinctly in late "August when he an- nounced that Savard would not play this season and added: "Based upon what I see, what l hear, what I read and what I'm it's very un- likely that Marc will ever play again." So there you have it. Done at age 34 -- less than two years after he signed a seven year contract extension for a reported $28 million. Yes, Marc Savard can conie back to the Garden but it can never be the same -- and he knows it. Returning for the Bruins-Rangers game on January 21, he noted that he purposely didn't enter the B's locker room prior to the con- test "because I knew it was a big game. I know how that works so I just didn't bother." And he may have come to accept his fate in life. "Right now, the way I'm still feeling and the daffy issues I'm feel- ing, it's tough to see a bright future right now. I still have my days where I want to get back and play but at the end of the day I know if I possibly got hit again what could hap- pen. It's a day-by-day thing and I'm still hoping that something happens. But if I feel like this I still couldn't play." Yes, it's frustrating but he feels that he did have a good career even though it was cut short. "It was tough last year (the Stanley Cup Cham- pionship season) not to be a true part of being there be- cause I thought I could have helped at times. But I was excited and when I sit back and look at it right now; if I don't ever play again I am happy. I guess I went out a winner too." In part, what allows him to feel that way is because on the eve of this year's training camp Chiarelli an- nounced that Savard would have his name included with the others on the Stanley Cup. "I'm on the Stanley Cup, I got a ring and a lot of credit goes to Peter Chiarelli and the organization for doing that for me. That was unex- pected but very nice. So, at the end of the day, I had a decent career even if I don't play again. I'm enjoying what I'm doing right now." What he is doing now is coaching little league hockey in Canada. He admits he does get on the ice now and then. "I do go on the ice a little bit. I'm not wheeling around or anything. My best buddy's the head coach and I'm the assistant coach so I'm just helping out and learning a lot of stuff." And what's the biggest thing he's learned? "That l never want to be an NHL coach." So there. You can cross that career move off your list of possibilities for Marc Savard. Of course, remember that he said he didn't want to be an NHL coach. There are other levels of coaching so one never knows. One of the youngsters he coaches is his own son Zachary. He says the kids are learning to avoid; injuries as much as possible. I see some situations where they cut to the middle like I did and you worry about them (the kids). But at our practices we're trying to get them to learn to take the puck wide and to protect themselves when getting hit." Savard says he hasn't talked with Pittsburgh star Sidney Crosby -- who has been out of action from the effects of a concussion. "I can definitely sympathize with him. I know what the issues are and how he's feel- ing on most nights, so I wish him the best." He says he'll be back -- he's rented the suite through the 2013-2014 season but you'll hiave to look for Savard in that location, not down with the team on the ice. It's a shame but HOCKEY LIFE wasn't fair to Marc Savard. Maybe future years will be.