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SUE TL FOX - NOV. 11, 2000

"Dakota Stone was interviewed at the Lucky Eagle Casino in Rochester, Washington. She was to fight Patricia Minton, but Minton was a no show. Stone did not get to fight..."
No Show Story

TL Fox: When were you contacted by Benny Georgina to fight at the Lucky Eagle Casino on today's card?

Stone: Even before the last card, six weeks ago, he had been trying to get me a fight with Kelly Whaley but it fell through and several others fighters fell through.

TL Fox: So did you train hard for this fight?

Stone: I trained really hard for this fight. There was talk of getting me a title fight eventually, and so I was working toward that.

TL Fox: So when did you find out your opponent was a "No Show?" What was your first reaction when you found out?

Stone: I was initially very angry about that.

TL Fox: You say that you had to get a full time job, so between working full time and training I assume you have been working extremely hard?

Stone: All I do is sleep, eat and train, 24 hours a day that is all I do.

TL Fox: So who told you that your opponent was a "no show" this morning?

Stone: I called Benny when I checked into the hotel last night (Nov. 10) and called him and told him that I was checked in.  I asked if he wanted me to come down and weigh in, which is what I have done before. He told me no and to call him in the morning. I felt like something was a little bit fishy, but disregarded it. I ended up calling Benny this morning before the weigh-in and asked him about the weigh-in and that was when he told me, "No, honey we have some bad news – that girl did not show up at the airport." It takes a lot to get ready for a fight---- emotionally, mentally, getting everything organized taking everything to the dry cleaners, attending to the little things, getting my robe cleaned. Picking out a new outfit, talking to the press and all the people, and selling the tickets, and making the arrangements. There is so much that goes into a fight, than just showing up. The fight is just the last piece of it actually to get in the ring. The fight is all that happens before you get here. Showing up and getting in the ring is the easy part. Once you get in the ring it is all instinct and it just happens and it's just eight minutes. You know I have eight weeks to get ready for a fight, there's hours of time and training and everything else that goes into it. And now I have to face all my fans that bought tickets, they are expecting to see me fight and they are not going to see it. I need to call people now, and tell them it is their choice to come out or not.

TL Fox: So with the fact that you come here your ready to weigh in, your ready to do it tonight, how does that make you feel as a woman boxer?

Stone: It makes me want to quit. Like it's not worth it. And it makes me feel like I should have stayed an amateur. Because you show up and they show up. It's not about your great winning record, perfect winning record and all that crap—it's about competition. That is the one thing I find that I don't like about professional boxing, especially about women's boxing, it's not about the record, not about the competition. And the Amateur fighting was great. You just show up and you fight the best. You widdle it down until you are fighting the best, and then if you win you know you are the best. I'm a very competitive person, and I love this sport.

TL Fox: Does it feel like an uphill battle in women's boxing? Because of the trouble getting matches, and when you do get matches, then you have a no show, or you find you have a match and the person won't follow through with the match?

Stone: It's just feels like it's never going to happen. It is getting to a point that I don't get excited about my fights anymore, I don't get motivated. It's hard to get up and go running, it's hard to show up on the days to the gym on the days I want to show up because there feels like there is no pay off at the end. When I was an amateur, there were fights when the winter time came, you know every weekend there were fights, there were always fights, you stay in shape and stay ready to compete. It's not that way in pros, it has been six months....

TL Fox: I know I was wondering what was going on, and thought that you may have quit boxing.

Stone: No. I have been scheduled on the last 2 or 3 cards that he has had here, and he hasn't been able to put anything together. I was scheduled to fight Kelly Whaley, and she supposedly had gotten pneumonia. Then I was suppose to fight another girl, and apparently she got in a fight with her girlfriend and went on a drunk binge and couldn't show up. He then tried to get Marsha Valley, and she couldn't make the weight. I'm like thinking, "Does anyone out there want to fight?" He tried to get me with Summer DeLeon. I have been wanting to fight since we have both been in amateurs. I don't know why some fighters bother to take a fight if they don't plan to show up. You know, just don't put the rest of us through this, if you (other women boxers) think you are going to chicken out, don't take the fight.

TL Fox: I know what you are going through-- getting ready for a fight.

Stone: It is a huge, HUGE let down. To get ready, pump myself up. Getting mentally prepared. It makes it harder to get the in the ring next time. It is hard to stay motivated when the fights keep falling through. Like I said, I understand the fear, not wanting to follow through, but just don't put it out there in the first place. Give the promoter 3-4 days to get another opponent. Here I am, I'm sick. I have caught a cold three days ago, I'm dealing with all this—I'm still here. I didn't back out, because I was afraid I was going to hack out in the ring. I would have fought with a broken arm, I would fight with one hand. This is why I do it. I do it because I love it Because I WANT to fight. I don't do it because I want to stay in the gym and train—that's the hard part. I love to fight, I love the crowd. I like to put on my shiny shorts and do my thing. I love the competition, and the best fights were when I didn't know if I won it or not, but I would go back to my corner and say, damn that was ....... fun. That was great. When I lose, I really don't care. You know, the crowd cares, and my coaches care. But I don't really care about the winning and losing, I really love to fight.

TL Fox: Let's talk about Laila Ali. I remember when we spoke before you said that you would like to have her on your agenda for fighting, any progress in that department?

Stone: No, and her fiancée (Johnny McClain is now Ali's husband) , saw me sparring down in Hollywood, at the Wild Card in about August. I was sparring with Danielle Doobenman. Danielle is actually the one who got me into boxing. After I  sparred Danielle,  he asked who else I had fought. I told him  Marsha Valley, Stacey Taylor.   I asked him if there was any chance of me getting a fight with Laila. He shook his head no. I knew that was the answer so I just walked away from him.

TL Fox: What do you think of the daughters with famous boxing legends in the sport.

Stone: I do get upset about the daughters, but the flip side of the good is people are talking about the daughters. They are talking about women's boxing, people are being forced to watch it, because the daughters are on the cards. And even if they are saying negative things about them, the flip side of that is they have to know in their mind that there are good female boxers out there. I think it is more household conversation to talk about women's boxing, now that the daughters are in it.

TL Fox: So you are looking at it as a positive?

Stone: Right, I'm not going to cash in on them. I may though in the long run cash in on them bringing women's boxing into the limelight. They may not be promoting women's boxing, they're promoting themselves. If they had wanted to promote women's boxing, they would have gone amateur. But they are not promoting anybody but themselves, but that's fine, because I am going to find a way to ride in on their coat tails and find a way for it to work for me. People see them and then they say, "Dakota could have beat her". And that's what they always say, and so that's bringing me up. Regardless of whether I ever fight Ali, people know that I could beat her. So it is really building my image and giving me strength.



So what DOES hurt women’s boxing, beside fighters ducking each other, or fighting tomato cans? You got it…. NO SHOWS…..

I left early this morning to cover the Dakota Stone / Patricia Minton four-rounder in Rochester, Washington, about an hour and one half drive from where I live. I wanted to make sure that I could cover this fight, so I took Friday off from work to insure that I would not get called in for overtime…. That is one of the downsides of being a cop… you work all kinds of crazy hours.

I was looking forward to covering this fight as I try to cover any and everything on women’s boxing, especially if the fight is within driving distance. I have been asked by many how I can cover so many fights and be so many places… some think I do this full time. I don’t. I use my vacation time, holiday time, and days off to cover boxing---most of the time I support this coverage with my own finances.

My life right now is pretty much 24-7 in not only providing the latest in the sport, but hopefully the best and most indepth. So you see…. When I try to give boxing fans what they want, and that is great "behind the Scenes" coverage… it gets just a little under my skin to see a fighter not show up.

I arrived at the weigh-in a half hour before it was to begin. The first person I saw was Patricia Minton’s manager, Greg Aldred. I asked him where Patricia was,  and after Greg gave a big sigh, he told me that he was embarrassed to say that "Pat" was a no-show. I asked Greg what happened, and he said to me that we could sit down and talk. (I was feeling a scoop coming on any minute!)

We found a comfortable place to sit and talk.  Greg told me that Pat contacted him about four months ago, and that she had to jump through a lot of hoops to get licensed in The state of Texas. Pat being 39 years old, she had to have a lot of medical testing in order to qualify. 

Greg said that about a month ago, he contacted  the Lucky Eagle Casino, and was able to get Pat a shot at coming to the Lucky Eagle, to not only have a great opportunity to fight Stone, but that he was sure that WBAN would be there to get her the exposure that she needed. He said that the weight agreement on the matchup with Stone was 159, plus one pound. 

Greg said that on  November 10, he made his journey to the State of Washington. Greg who lives in Utah, first drove by car to Las Vegas, Nevada, which is about an hour and one half from where he lives. He then flew from Las Vegas, Nevada, to Salt Lake City, Utah, and  then to Portland, Oregon--final destination:  Portland International Airport (PDX).

Greg, not thinking for one minute that Pat was "NOT" coming, waited for her flight to arrive from El Paso, Texas. He was excited about her fighting and waited anxiously for her to deplane the aircraft. When the last passenger got off the jetway, Greg thought that maybe Pat changed the flight plans to include her friend Irma to also come to Washington. After two hours of frustration and a series of unanswered phone calls he made to Pat, he found out that Pat had canceled her flight.

Greg came to Rochester, Washington, and had to tell the promoter that his fighter was not coming. And basically the promoter lost out too, financially speaking.

In the meantime, Greg’s wife continued to call Pat, but there were no return calls.  

Greg went to his hotel room that the promoter provided, and did not hear a thing from Pat, until today, November 11, at about 9:15 am in the morning. No, it was not Pat who called. It was her friend, Irma. Irma told Greg that Pat was not coming because Irma’s grandmother passed away.

What I found a bit odd is that Pat did not make the "one hour and 45 minute before weigh-in phone call." Irma made the phone call… Irma’s relative is the one that passed on. In fact, Greg has yet to have spoken to Pat since she canceled her flight and fight. Another thing, is if Pat could not make it, why not some forewarning, like even a day could have made a difference in finding a replacement fighter for Stone. She knew that Greg was in Washington since yesterday, and not even a "courtesy" call was made….I guess only Pat knows for sure. . . . ..

I interviewed Dakota Stone at the weigh-in today and that interview will be posted soon.  Dakota talks about her feelings about this last minute "ditch" no show, and her response from Johnny McClain, when she asked him about fighting Laila Ali.  She talks about her frustration of being a pro and not getting fights, and wishing she had stayed in the amateurs! 

I also met up with Mike Morton, and his past World-class boxer from the past, Ray Lampkin. (Lampkin is the fighter that fought Roberto Duran in Panama and was seriously injured in the 1970's.)   I knew Morton when he was managing Lampkin and he was also one of the boxing managers that had wanted to manage me when I was boxing.   He told me that if I had signed with him in the past that I would have made a lot of money..... hmmm... I wonder about that! Reporting from Rochester.... be on the lookout "BOLO" for my behind the scenes report tomorrow with photos! Sue TL Fox 11/11/00

The fight between Dakota Stone, a local from Seattle, and Ann Wolfe, from Waco, Texas,  was one of the most exciting bouts on the card! 

Stone was making her pro debut, after having earned a 12-1 amateur record and winning the 1999 national junior middleweight championship, just losing one amateur bout.  Come to find out, her only loss was to none other than Ann Wolfe!

Ann Wolfe, a 28-year old, 5'9", 155-pounder, with two little girls, was very impressive with her power and skills. Wolfe was a very subdue fighter when interviewing her, and she said that, "I respect any woman who gets in the ring to fight."  Wolfe said that she would fight anybody, anytime, and is anxious to fight again.

Wolfe, who knocked Stone down with a clear right hand,  won by a Unanimous Decision, and is now 2-0.  She had her pro debut over a year ago, in September of 1998.  Stone  fell to  0-1.  These are definitely going to be two up and coming fighters to look out for!

All of the male bouts were very well matched and there were some close calls in a couple of them.  The main event, Martin O'Malley, finished his opponent, Tito Tovar off in the 4th round by a TKO.  O'Malley remains undefeated at now 11-0, with 10 KO's.  

In the mixed match, between Margaret MacGregor vs. Loi Chow, it was well-matched as far as skill level with MacGregor appearing to be more seasoned and in better physical condition.  The crowd was very  "hyped" about this fight, and is probably the reason why the arena was sold out at over 2,700 tickets.  Although I don't believe that mix-matches will be a positive for women's boxing, I was relieved to see that neither fighter was capable of hurting each other.



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