night in Boston, Vince Martinez knocked out a little-known fighter named Mario
Terry in the third round. The fight was unimpressive, but Columnist Gillooly
was intrigued by the fervor of the new relationship between Martinez and his
manager, Bill Daly.
Martinez, recently returned from the cruel penal island of Boycott, a moated
fortress somewhere off the Jersey shore, dropped into town yesterday to
declare, in harmonious chorus with his manager, that he wasn't really exiled at
all and that he has no Napoleonic complexes.
collected at the Como on Friend St. for scrapple (naturally the fight mob's
favorite breakfast is scrapple) and Martinez, quite possibly the best
welterweight in the world, and his reconciled pilot, Honest Bill Daly, were
Daly is known
far as well as wide as Honest Bill because he is treasurer of the International
Boxing Managers Guild, or Guilt in pugdom's parlance; because he keeps saying:
"Well, we might as well be honest about this"; and because, any time
that he takes the empty bottles to the supermarket for rebate, he always turns
over the full amount to the Mrs. The latter calls for sterling character,
It turns out
that Martinez didn't spend 15 months on barren but inescapable Boycott. It was
another colony entirely; a pleasant retreat known as Friendship Vineyard.
made no move to boycott this boy," said Daly with an endearing glance at
Martinez. "It was friendship. In 35 years in The Game, I've made a lot of
friends: promoters, managers, sportswriters. They all figured I got a bad deal
and they just wouldn't give him any action out of sympathy to me."
Daly winced at
each mention of boycott, which has a conspiratorial ring, and the tone of
intrigue. The dictionary says it derived from a situation in County Mayo,
Ireland in 1880 when a Captain Boycott, a land agent, got the total snub. It
means to combine against a person in a policy of nonassociation especially for
political reasons and next trip to the dictionary I must get around to fettle
as in "fine fettle" and petrel as in "stormy petrel" to find
out what in h—l they are.
While Daly and
Martinez were on the outs—Daly figures it was a $100,000 spat—Martinez was
practically at leisure with only a few bouts. He couldn't even pick a fight on
the street. Each time he put on his kid gloves (and "he's a dandy) there
was a tug at Ms heart because there was no padding in the knuckles. He was
taboo, fib doubt about it, doing his light training in a figurative
Once a Canadian
fighter was smuggled in, ostensibly to give Martinez a go somewhere south of
the Mason-Dixon line, far from the big gold of New York. At the last moment the
Canadian excused himself. Friendship for Daly had raised its loyal head.
Another time vassal Vince was to have gone against Irvin Steen in Akron. The
day of the bout it was canceled and the promoter gave "lack of
interest" as the reason. There had been a violent storm in the vicinity
that day; the excuse had merit.
A wrangle with
Martinez' family caused the $100,000 cleavage and set Martinez back a full
year. It cost him possibly the best year of his strife, for he was named Rookie
of the Year for 1952 and experts saw him soon shelling Johnny Saxton from the