I ONLY TALK WINNING by Angelo with Mike Winters Dundee


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Sunny talk of a rough-and-tumble life. As the manager and/or trainer of ten world-champion boxers, Dundee doubtless has a story to tell--but there's only a bloodless outline here. The son of Italian immigrants who settled in South Philadelphia, he discarded the family name Mireno when he followed two brothers into boxing after WW II service. Working for tightwad Chris in Miami, Angelo made his own name with three Cuban champs: Luis Rodriques, Sugar Ramos, and Jose Napoles. Along the way he picked up Willie Pastrano, a likable pug who reigned briefly as light-heavyweight champ despite active pursuit of women and little interest in training. In Louisville for a 1957 Pastrano bout, Dundee was approached by Cassius Clay, then an outgoing teenager with dreams of Olympics glory. After winning a gold medal at the 1960 games, Clay (backed by local businessmen) hired Dundee as his manager; but--the book's major disappointment--Dundee contributes no ringside-seat intelligence on Muslim-convert Clay's Vietnam-War draft resistance or any other part of the Ali saga. (Commenting on his replacement by Herbert Muhammad, Dundee only says judiciously that he can understand Ali's ""desire to have the guidance of his religious leaders in his career."") Also passed over or glossed over are: Dundee's association with racketeer Frankie Carbo, which led to non-renewal of his New York State license; the ring death of a Ramos opponent; a running feud with Ray Leonard's financial backers; Sonny Liston's links to organized crime; and the divisive rivalries of boxing's governing boards. In fact, there's lots more detail on Dundee's dining adventures in London, Tokyo, and other stops on the global boxing circuit than the bouts that took him there. A dull business, even for avid fans.

Pub Date: April 1st, 1985
Publisher: Contemporary