Time to wake up, Tarver

Updated: April 9, 2008, 12:38 PM ET
By Dan Rafael
Your weekly random thoughts …

Is anyone else tired of the delusional Antonio Tarver talking as though he is still a force in boxing? At one time, he was the true light heavyweight world champion and one of the very best in the world. He beat Roy Jones convincingly in the second and third fights of their trilogy, once by massive knockout and once by lopsided decision. You can't ever take that away from him. But he's not that fighter anymore. He just can't see it. Some of the stuff that comes out of his mouth is absolutely mind-numbing. During a recent conference call to discuss his Saturday night fight on Showtime against titleholder Clinton Woods, Tarver continued his ludicrous ramblings. Among them: "No one can say they whooped me." Tarver, apparently, has forgotten that June 2006 fight with Bernard Hopkins, who battered him pillar to post, knocked him down, won a near-shutout decision and took the world title. Later, when addressing the loss, Tarver added, "But I've never made excuses." Again, he obviously forgot about the absurd one he came up with after the fight, when he made unsubstantiated claims that he had been drugged.

Chad Dawson, the outstanding young titleholder who defends his version of the title against former champ Glen Johnson on the same card (because Tarver ducked him) sees right through Tarver, who was not impressive in his two comeback wins against club fighters Elvir Muriqi and Danny Santiago. "In Tarver's last two fights, he has shown nothing," Dawson said during his portion of the call. "He's like a dead fighter to me. Clinton Woods is not going to back up and he's not going to back down. Like I said, Tarver looks like a dead man to me." At least Dawson speaks the truth. Tarver could learn a lesson from him.