Blog

17 Jul

Careful where you walk in Albuquerque

cozzone / drugs, new mexico, Photos / / 0 Comments

If you’re looking for someplace to take a stroll, you might want to rule out Robinson Park, downtown Albuquerque. Hell, you might want to skip downtown altogether – unless you’re looking to score a bag of dope or you actually enjoy stepping over the dozens of homeless folk napping on the sidewalks or storefronts. The shot above was taken on a Friday night just after 9:30 – but you can catch the action any time of day or night.

09 Jul

Where have I been?

No one really retires, when it comes to boxing. 

No one really retires, when it comes to photography. 

One of those statements tell my story. 

It’s been three years since I shot my last boxing match. There was nothing special about it. Maybe that’s why, later that night,after 17 years — 14 of those spent as a ringside (& Octagonside) fixture for most major fights — the time had come. 

There were many factors. Things had gotten stale. Shooting for what amounted to less pay every year, watching what (still) appears to be a declining sport, feeling like you’ve gotten every type of shot at least once, if not a hundred times, and feeling unchallenged, all led to my decision. 

There were other major factors, as well. 

As far as boxing goes, I told myself that when the time came when clinging to a ringside position meant shooting for pennies, it would be time to go. As far local boxing goes, I always said that when Johnny Tapia was done (he passed away in 2012) and when Holly Holm moved on (to bigger, better things), I, too, would go. 

So I did. 

I got married the same year I divorced myself from boxing. I also made a new commitment to what had been, through the 90s, 00s and early 10s, a secondary profession for me—teaching. 

This, then, is what I’ve been up to since ’14. Well, that, and more writing, though in fields that have nothing to do with chronicling who’s getting clobbered, what coddled champ picked up what new pretty belt, what pug was too old now, what youngster was on the rise, etc. 

What went on the back burner was the shooting, at least full-time shooting. 

Flash forward 2017. 

Several missions accomplished, feeling like I’m where I want to be – a teacher, now an administrator, for an awesome high school embedded in jail, I’ve come back to the camera. 

Life’s a spiral. You always come back to the things you’re driven to do. For me, that’s always been wrestling, wrangling and juggling my images, my words and teaching. 

Armed with new gear, a fresh perspective that has me feeling like I did when I finished journalism school, I’m hitting the streets and keeping my calendar open for clients. You might not see the once-familiar bald head on the apron at a major fight (though you never know), but you will see me walking the streets again, or shooting the occasional wedding. You’ll definitely see me photographing students when they graduate.

It’s good to be back. 

14 Apr

Coverage: Pacquiao vs. Bradley

cozzone / feature story, fight coverage, las vegas / / 0 Comments

Ringside report: You could make a case that the third man in the ring with Manny Pacquiao and Timothy Bradley, Saturday night at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas, was referee Kenny Bayless. It was obvious, I mean, he was right there, the man in blue, doing such a good job you hardlynoticed he was there.

But you could also make the case that Juan Manual Marquez, recently defeated by one, after having knocked out cold, the other, was also present.

Standing tall and unseen would be a fifth shadow, that of Floyd Mayweather, untoppled from his hill and less-than-gently reminding the 15,601 in attendance – not to mention the promoter – just whose house they were brawling in, whose city, and whose sport . . . More

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Post-fight:  You can’t go to a Manny Pacquiao post-fight press conference and not ask what it’s going to take the Powers That Be to put together the only fight that matters in this day and age – Pacquiao vs. Floyd Mayweather, for those who may have forgotten . . . More

29 Jun

local fights in albuquerque

cozzone / fight coverage, new mexico / / 0 Comments

Fight card June 28, 2013 at the Convention Center in Albuquerque.

Proving no cat’s paw for undefeated Cristian “El Puma” Cabral, veteran Joe “Ironman” Gomez wielded a heavy, iron hand last night in Albuquerque. Silencing Cabral’s cabal and taming the wildcat that had gone undefeated in six bouts, Gomez showed a loud crowd of 500 at the Convention Center the value of experience, by stopping his younger, faster foe inside five frames . . . |more|

05 Jun

story: return of “the atrisco kid”

cozzone / fight coverage, new mexico / / 0 Comments

Fidel Maldonado, aka "The Atrisco Kid"

You’re not likely to find a community as stubborn as the town of Atrisco, which hugs Albuquerque’s west side just south of Route 66. Settled by Spaniards in 1598 and fortified by a 1692 land grant that still continues to legally challenge the system, Atrisco is a living, breathing throwback of a town. Within its winding streets, over and around the ditches for which it is known, lives and trains another throwback, with a throwback name . . . More

01 Jun

local fight coverage: albuquerque 5.31.13

cozzone / fight coverage, new mexico / / 0 Comments

DSCF1130

Biologist Thomas Huxley once wrote, “Misery is a match that never goes out.”

Huxley was, of course, referring to the sort of match that lights a candle or a powder keg, and definitely not a boxing match, but, lacking any sort of potential pop and with bouts unending, uneventful, last night’s local smoker at Crowne Plaza in Albuquerque just plain bombed.

That’s bombed, as in tanked, and not in any sense of a word related to a display of fireworks . . . More

12 May

leaving holm – holly holm’s final fight

cozzone / fight coverage, new mexico / / 0 Comments

Boxing

 

Boxing

Bidding adios to boxing after more than a decade and marking the end of an era, on both local and global fronts, Holly Holm left an emotional sold-out crowd, last night at Route 66 Casino in Albuquerque, with a final-but-furious victory.

Relinquishing all claims to pound-for-pound supremacy, Holm securely stepped down from her throne in a safe scrap by dominating oversized, overwhelmed Mary McGee, of Gary, Ind., through ten rounds. It might not have been the showdown fans have been clamoring for – Holm vs. Cecelia Braekhus, of course – but the 3,000 in attendance at the Fresquez-promoted card wholeheartedly cheered on the champ that has reigned at the local box-office since 2005 . . . More

07 May

book review of “Boxing in New Mexico”

cozzone / etcetera, new mexico / / 0 Comments

Cozzone_978-0-7864-6828-7B

Book review by David Finger of Fightnews.com:

Boxing fans can be forgiven if the idea of another regional boxing history book doesn’t excite them right off the bat. Most tend to fall into two categories: an overglossed pamphlet that rehashes well known boxing stories or a book long on facts but short on drama. A book that people buy only to look in the index to find what page “Uncle Charlie” appears on. But to lump the newest regional boxing book in that category would be a tremendous mistake. Boxing in New Mexico 1868-1940 isn’t just the best regional boxing history book to come out this century…it may very well be the best boxing history book period . . . |more|

05 May

fight coverage: mayweather vs. guerrero

cozzone / fight coverage, las vegas / / 0 Comments

Not a “Ghost” of a chance with Mayweather:

Ringside by Chris Cozzone

Thirty-six-year-old Floyd “Money” Mayweather may yet grow old.

But last night was not his time to do so.

Needing just two rounds to expel the specters of rust and age, Mayweather proved the naysayers wrong, yet again, by defending his pound-for-pound crown and one of the welterweight belts with a one-sided spanking of Robert “Ghost” Guerrero. The challenger proved dreadfully ineffectual against the drearily masterful, transforming what was a hoped-for war, into something of a sparring session, which evoked sporadic waves of boos from an anxious crowd.

The fight, billed as “May Day,” became less about a billing and more of a distress signal for Team Guerrero, as the rounds progressed. Despite two rounds of effective aggression behind an eager left hand, the Gilroy southpaw mounted a charged attack. That lasted as long as it took Mayweather to perfect a flawless plan. Once that happened, faith, family, not even the firearm that got him in hot water in New York last month, was going to stick a victory in Guerrero’s pocket, Floyd’s crown upon his head and another belt around his waist . . . More

05 May

fight coverage: Mares-DeLeon, Santa Cruz-Munoz, Rosado-Love

cozzone / fight coverage, las vegas / / 0 Comments

“MayDay” undercard coverage in Vegas

In what should cement him a high pound-for-pound ranking, and the man to beat in the 120s, three-division world champ Abner Mares, 26-0-1, 14 Kos, moved up to 126 to dethrone WBC Featherweight Champ Daniel Ponce De Leon, 44-5, 35 Kos. Weathering the champ’s battering ram of a left hand, Mares unraveled his sparmate and friend, dropping him not once but twice en route to a knockout win in round nine . . . More