Also in this playlist...
This transcript is automatically generated
And welcome back to good friend of the show Mark -- one of the finest was journalist in America today.
And the author of the good son -- life of ray boom -- and -- fresh off his -- -- -- and fresh off the life of -- and an Arabic -- -- over the NFL network now.
But you know marketing know but I I actually love boxing is it for me was the first sport that that I came across the personalities is they were that are a part of it.
The guts it takes even get in the ring let alone thrive in the ring which you have to overcome in the styles.
But this guy was my childhood.
This is ray boom boom and.
Nancy -- one of the things about boxing is there.
All the other sports are metaphors for what boxing actually years -- is combat so if if you're in.
From my business is a writer it's hard to screw that up as as far as.
Ray boom boom Mancini is concerned it's it's difficult I'm finding it difficult to convey to younger people.
How big this guy was and how much civil apart.
Television played good old fashion network TV broadcast TV -- I read anything you pack.
On a Saturday afternoon how big a part that played.
In this story in the know in in the light photo of a boom boom Mancini he was.
Been in many respects.
A creature not just of of television the way we think of it today.
But old school network.
Sports TV his life was produced.
As a fable.
-- us a serial.
For CBS sports I don't know would do I'm going to have the background of -- All right now ME ST here's another thing that just before we -- to begin to this another reason I like boxing is it is emblematic with having America at the time.
And you also talk about the ethnic struggles in the Irish in the Italians in the African Americans.
With you going through his society and how they have to work their way up a lot of times literally by put on the gloves don't get in the right.
Re re also raise Cole was ray's story.
Also became emblematic of something else that was that was going on -- -- time which was.
Industrial recession the country is changing the steel mills -- from Youngstown Ohio the steel mills -- going -- And there -- reserved -- general is hungry you -- that did a generation of Americans who had been a custom you know couple generations of Americans who'd grown up with the idea of the mill.
As always being there.
In their town that no matter what happens.
You'll be able to get a job at the same way year old man got a job in the -- 1977.
The big -- Youngstown Ohio shuts down.
And it's known as black Monday.
And in many respects that informs the whole -- seen the saga so there it.
As life gets tougher and rougher in places like Youngstown Ohio.
Ray Mancini boom boom Mancini comes up as as a representative of something.
Something that's good out of coming out of a place it's it's really -- like a lot of places at that time.
In ray's case in in Youngstown and particularly young stars and a funny place -- always been known nationally.
As a very rough tough violent city it's -- In between Cleveland and Pittsburgh and there's -- -- distance between Cleveland Pittsburgh and -- always this sense of who's mob Stanley doesn't belong.
Out and win win the meals go -- when when.
There's this huge economic downturn and played in in in Youngstown.
The mob -- -- -- have been fighting over the spoils now fight for the scraps and life becomes even -- And out of this rises this great story of boom boom Mancini.
And for those who don't know his father also came out -- Youngstown.
Hum had been a number one contender in 1941.
Lost a bad decision in -- Cleveland -- us.
Goes off to war.
November 10 1944.
A couple of days after he sees.
A vision of the virgin Mary hovering over his trench.
He takes a German mortar shell.
And basically -- that's the end of him.
As a fighter he'd fought as a lightweight now he'd spend a year and a and an army hospitals a year -- even as an outstanding Boxee you go fight the war.
I mean you know you don't do any show show fights some means some guys it was I don't wanna say publicity stunt but you know.
Sugar Ray Robinson.
Guys like that never saw.
Combat you know.
-- Mancini was drafted.
He had hopes that he was fighting at the -- basically some exhibitions.
During you're station in Fort Hamilton Brooklyn.
But -- it came -- time -- Get over -- -- are gonna walk again after the February -- you know at first.
They didn't think that he would be a live.
Then they didn't think if you would walk and ray tells the very very to news to very poignant story.
Of you know snuggling in with his father.
On the couch.
As a kid and the father only had one -- who turn.
To the right so that his left side would be -- watching TV.
And -- could feel in his father's on.
The bits of metal bits of shrapnel still there and hole also from -- Johnson from from the from the German -- -- And one of the things that they're -- does is the the basement of the family home.
-- the scrapbook of his father's career.
And as a as a kid 5678910.
Years old rate goes through the scrapbook.
And checks out the the newspaper clippings and the photographs some of them -- publicity stills some of them pretty brutal shots of his old man.
After he's been beat -- and some of them in the book isn't a mess and raised thinks of that.
Almost as a kind of religious construct he says my dad's beautiful I -- I wanna be that I wanna finish that job now another kid would say.
She's my dad it's it's terrible I don't want any part of that I'm gonna go.
You're on undergo bake cakes and Adobe college professor ray sees it.
And he says I'm good to win the title for my -- -- becomes.
A quest on all levels most kids who have that that inkling outgrow it pretty fast -- actually does it and doesn't -- national TV.
Right he it becomes his champion he became the contender any fault with such.
You so determined to take some punishment was so aggressive and was a good guy.
He did great -- interview after he pours -- out to you.
And people like to interview room after they got to -- outside the ring and the way he -- would endear anyone even when he lost to Livingston rambler anybody else -- what a great guy.
But -- being elected to bring into the -- is said when ray Mancini was was fighting along the way.
I think it was ABC just sold the story.
They would get you involved in the story -- even if you didn't like boxing where it was NBC was -- CBS CBS.
They would go well I like that story in so people would gather round.
If you just throw to guys in the ring it's hard to like that unless you're boxing -- it's impossible likely yet.
You need to know very -- autumn there and that's what they used to show and that's what -- -- Mancini sold back.
That's exactly right -- they were there were two elements here one is the style.
He -- with I think resonate with guys of of RH.
On it was very theatrical is very violent he never he never gave you less than everything he had.
The other thing is that and this is more important as far as developing fighters or any narrative.
He had a great story to talent CBS evoked it as a serial he was doing this to win the title that his dad could not and that.
Drew you back on any number of successive.
And you saw the father there.
And he looked like the it looked like -- -- could be my dad.
And even when ray gets his butt kicked by Lexus.
He fought gallantly for if you ask what she did was you know get a little -- it was maybe one of the greatest -- is -- of all time heat.
He gets knocked out.
He has every one shocked everyone says it's too early to fight someone like Alexis -- -- -- result.
He's 20/20 one years old.
That's when he is old actually what what business you have pairing him with Lexus our -- -- just because it's good TV and through ten rounds.
It's -- even -- yet to everyone's.
Finally knocks him out and raise despondent after the fight means just about -- apologizing to his father didn't see it on camera.
Our Quayle who's stately.
Attrition and in his in his bearing demeanor.
Turns to him and says that you have with your father that's the most important thing that's beautiful.
And in defeat.
You know this is national TV now there's no ESPN.
There's no Internet this is the main event this is what guys our age -- seen and our fathers -- are seeing.
And in defeat he resonates as as heavily as he as he ever did.
-- the name of the book is the good son the life for ray boom boom Mancini Mark Kriegel you're talking about is just out today you gotta go scramble to get it.
There's going to be a best seller Dell in this story.
You also have a -- that fails his first time but yet he's -- still very marketable afterwards.
In his quest to get that championship that he would eventually get -- get it.
He gets it off to a -- through the auspices of thoroughly corrupt organization the -- -- -- day.
And as a bunch of stuff in the book about.
The match nations they needed to.
Do was this promoter and Bob -- to get him a title shot.
But mostly CBS is driving -- they need they need him to be successful and he he merits.
The irony was ready is that he gets the title he is huge -- again it's difficult to think of as he is the most marketable athlete.
-- at -- bill Cosby's at ringside Stallone wants to do the movie of his -- and eventually does -- the movie of his life.
Wherever he goes people no enemies almost as -- as Jordan.
Ray Leonard had had just retired.
A couple of days before the -- the fatal fight with du -- Kim.
And that leaves ray Mancini -- loan again it is the most arguably the most marketable athlete in America.
And at the moment when everything should go right.
Sinatra happens to be fun Sanderson Majoli ringside at the moment everything goes right he kills an --
Filter by section