Maddalone will soldier on

July, 11, 2012
7/11/12
12:55
PM ET
Throwback fighter Vinny Maddalone, never afraid to take two to try to give one, always cognizant that people are paying good money to watch him fight and thus always wanting to give people their money's worth, didn't have a good night on Saturday night, against Brit Tyson Fury. The 6-9 heavyweight kept Maddalone (now 35-8-0; 4-4 in his last eight fights) from getting in close, with a persistent jab, and used enough movement to maintain a safe distance from Maddalone's overhand rights. The Flushing, Queens boxer was saved further punishment from the ref midway through the fifth round, when the fight was stopped, in England.

One had to wonder, watching the bout, seeing that Maddalone wasn't having much luck ... was this his last call, or would he soldier on?

We know fighters are stubborn souls, and that serves them well when they do the early AM road work which most of us with regular reservoirs of willpower would like to do, but blow off. That stubbornness can suit boxers well on the way up, but on the way down, it can be counterproductive. Because there is a fine line between faith in self, and self delusion. So, Vinny, is that it?

On Sunday, Maddalone sat down and chatted with wife Kathy, he told me. They've been married since 2007. Kathy told Vinny she thought it might be a good time to hang up the gloves. Vinny didn't have to think too long before he nodded his head, no.

No, he said, I'm not going out that way.

"This is all I know," he told NYFightBlog. "Everyone says as you get older as a fighter you lose a half step," said the 38-year-old hitter, "and I've lost a little step. But I need to fight a guy that's gonna be in front of me, gonna make for a fun fight. My body still feels good. I gotta keep going. My wife understands me. She met me as a fighter. I'll know when it's gonna be time."
Michael Woods, a member of the board of the Boxing Writers Association of America, has been covering boxing since 1991. He writes about boxing for ESPN The Magazine and is the news editor for TheSweetScience.com.

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