Foreman's take on boxers in trouble

March, 19, 2013
3/19/13
11:26
AM ET
Not long after I chatted with George Foreman about the new boxing promotion he is forming with his sons, and we touched on how Big George might handle a fighter under the Foreman umbrella who shows troublemaker tendencies outside the ring, word got out that Adrien Broner had been arrested in Miami.

The 23-year-old Cincinnati resident, who holds the WBC lightweight title, is slated to fight WBA welter champ Paul Malignaggi on June 22 at Barclays Center in Brooklyn. Both fighters are promoted by Golden Boy, which has an exclusive deal to put on pro fights at Barclays.

Broner posted his mug shot and booking info on his Instagram account, tweeted that link, and subsequently scrubbed the Instagram post. The Miami-Dade report, first pointed out and confirmed by David Greisman of Boxing Scene, said Broner was booked on a battery charge on Monday. He was released after a $1,500 bond was paid.

In an interview with Ring TV's Lem Satterfield, Broner made light of the arrest. He accused, jokingly I think, that Malignaggi "sent the police to arrest me for nothing." Satterfield said Broner wouldn't part with details of his arrest.

Foreman touched on how he'd handle a Foreman fighter who seems to be going off the rails, or dealing with self-imposed drama, in his personal life. The ex-fighter is an ordained minister who has been giving sermons in churches for decades. "That (background) will get me an edge with fighters," he said. "I've got all the stories you can tell them. But I will not preach too much, I'll save the preaching for Sunday morning. You've got to let them be an American, let the guys get the foolishness out of their system. If boxing can't knock the foolishness out of their system, I sure can't."

He pointed to the stunning turnaround enjoyed by Mike Tyson, the former Baddest Man on the Planet who did time for rape and has since seemed to reform himself to be a gentle soul who adheres to a vegan diet. The message is clear: never give up hope that anyone, even someone who seems to be lost in a fog of self-destruction, will see the light, and find the narrower path of rightness.
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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