Ravens Cut Rice But Former Running Back Will Not Go Down For The Count
Ray Rice’s Knock-out Punch Might Have Ended His NFL Career, But It Might Have Launched A New One In Boxing
By TRAVIS MOORE
Published September 7, 2014
Former Baltimore Ravens running back Ray Rice lost his contract with his team yesterday after a video emerged of him punching his then-fiancee in an Atlantic City hotel elevator. Rice, however, may indeed have nine lives because while the video cost him a job it might have earned him a new one. In a press statement released at 6 p.m. EST, Don King Productions announced that Rice signed a five-bout contract worth over $2 million.
Not just football fans – but also boxing fans – marveled at the quickness of Rice’s straight left in the closed confines of an elevator. “It was so fast, the frame rate could not even pick it up,” said former middleweight champion and boxing commentator Sugar Ray Lewis. “All you can see is the [woman] go down like someone just tased her.”
Another boxing analyst said what many other pugilist enthusiasts had on their minds after seeing the video. “I’ve got two words for you: Mike Tyson,” said Tony Atlas, the famed trainer of two heavyweight champions and current boxing commentator. “Of course, you can say that his wife is not a trained fighter but I haven’t seen an off-balance punch do that to anybody — male or female — since Iron Mike,” he said.
All this kid needs is a little fine tuning and he is going to be something.”
Rice does have the makings of a promising heavyweight contender in the same mold as Tyson. He is fast and has enough upper body strength to throw a knock-out punch in a blink of an eye. He is short compared to modern heavyweights, but could use his compactness to fire rapid upper cuts and hooks. “He didn’t even have his feet planted when he took her down,” said Atlas. “Let’s see what he can do when he gets some leverage in his punches.”
The “Fight Doctor” Bernie Hoenig was particularly effusive in his praise. “I just love what we see in this entire sequence,” said Hoenig. “They exchange light jabs in the far corner and he catches her with almost a left-cross as she is coming at him and he is back-peddling,” he said. “All this kid needs is a little fine tuning and he is going to be something.”
Unfortunately or not for Rice, he will have the time to develop his boxing skills. The NFL followed the Ravens contract termination by suspending Rice from the NFL indefinitely, which would prevent another team from bringing him on. Rice has not been interviewed since launching his boxing career, but he did send a tweet trying to make light of his strange predicament: “I’m excited for a new beginning in a sport I loved as a kid. Wife says I need to find a new sparring partner!”