By Tommy D
A boxing legend among the stars…
Okay fight fans today we have boxing royalty and a real legend of the game with us today, two time welterweight champion Marlon “Magic Man” Starling. This mans name holds more weight than the water in Niagra so learn about him. Tomorrow is his birthday so lets wish him a happy 53rd.
TD: Hey what you say there Marlon, How you doing?
MS: Am doing just fine, and thanks for having me.
TD: Now Marlon, you were recognized as one of the best if not the best welterweights of your time. Two time welterweight champion of the world. Now did you do anything different than the pros today in preparation for the big fights?
MS: Well I don’t know what the pros do today, but I worked hard. I worked hard and did what I needed to get done for each bout.
TD: Now you have a beautiful resume, fought some very good professionals in your career, do you ever wish you had one of them fights back?
MS: No not really, it turned out the way it turned out. I always tried my best and gave it my best when I walked away from the sport of boxing I was satisfied. You got to understand that for each and every opponent you face conditioning is 95% of the game.
TD: True. Yes today some guys don’t make weight or don’t come mentally ready for the big event.
MS: Well these guys today, I honestly don’t really know what they do?
TD: Right and today conditioning is such a big factor in the sport of boxing. Guys not making weight or losing a percentage of the purse if not titles on the scale. What would you say to a guy who is showing signs of having trouble?
MS: Cancel the fight!
TD: Cancel the fight?
MS: Yup, if your not ready your not ready. You won’t be at your best in a couple of hours that it takes to make the weight.
TD: Not many pros can say that they finished their careers in the top ten either and that is a very big accomplishment itself. Is there a pro out there today at welterweight that would give you a run for your money?
MS: Well I don’t see anybody out there that would give me a lot of problems.
TD: How about Floyd Mayweather Jr?
MS: Well Floyd Mayweather, I fought his father and I beat him twice. Floyd Jr. fights similar to his father. I think it would be a good fight but I think I have too much power and my hands well they speak for themselves.
TD: Ha!Ha! Oh man, thats awesome. You fought Floyd Sr, and twice. I know the guy is very sharp, but his son today Floyd Jr, is the pound for pound king. Besides you, how well would he do in your era of boxers?
MS: I don’t think he’d be pound for pound king, there were too many good fighters in my era, Floyd wouldn’t be undefeated.
TD: So he wouldn’t have the “O” in your day huh?
TD: Yeah its a taste test with Floyd, some people hate him just because he’s on top and some people love him because inside the ring and has the skill.
MS: No he’s good, a very good fighter no question about it. He’s sharp, very sharp he has to be ready, It’s best to keep Floyd in the middle of the ring.
TD: So what would be your blueprint on fighting Floyd Mayweather Jr and winning?
MS: I would give him a lot of faints’ and work the body.
TD: Work the body?
MS: Yup work the body, and the rest will come.
TD: Ok, now I gotta ask you this, there is another guy with the same Moniker as you, I’m talking about Paulie Malignaggi. Do you think he’s worthy of this handle he has acquired?
MS: Well there was only one Magic Man when you look at it that was Marlon Starling and also Antonio Tarver was the magic man also.
TD: There’s only one, oh thats right Tarver too..
MS: Thats right! Only one…
TD: I can’t argue that you have a beautiful resume my man. So true.
TD: Now as famous as you were inside the ring you’ve also been known to be quite a man outside the ring as well. You drove a limo and ran a restaurant. You also worked with special needs kids and still do through Christian Charities and youth groups. I mean wow! If thats all I knew about you Marlon you’d be ok with me but the fact that you were a professional prize fighter and the best welterweight of your time is just like the icing on the cake if you ask me. Can you talk about your blue collar life after you retired?
MS: Well I was raised by great parents. They raised me to be hard working and respectful and to love each one of the human beings that we come upon. I look at it as, “treat everyone the way you wanted to be treated”.
TD: I totally agree. That is brilliant philosophy Marlon. Ok so you were actually the only boxer in your family. I know your son has done very well for himself being associated with films and the music industry I read somewhere he is the co-founder of UrbanYupie.com. Did he ever want to box or did you ever encourage him to box?
MS: I never encouraged him and he never wanted to box, I mean I was a kid with a kid I was a father learning how to be a parent plus he had been to a lot of my training camps it just wasn’t the thing for him.
TD: Cool so he actually seen what you went through on the regular before big fights and what not. If he wrote a book on life, would it be a top seller?
MS: Well maybe, he likes boxing sort of but being associated with it anything more than a fan is as far as it goes.
TD: Marlon what message would you give to the up and coming star pro boxers of the future?
MS: The message I’d convey is that, “Don’t worry about the money just box and train hard if your good they’re going to have to pay you.
TD: Right, so basically do what you love?
MS: Yes, just do what you love and the money will come.
TD: Amen to that. That’s what you call that good oil Marlon! It has truely been an honor Marlon you’re a legend man, just sitting here talking with you no doubt about it is an honor.
TD: Before you go I have a few fight predictions if you would. Now I know your cool with Chad Dawson you spoke to him several times seen him train, and…
MS: I sparred with him before.
TD: Oh you actually sparred with him? Hahah!!!
TD: How do you feel about his upcoming bout with Andre Ward?
MS: I don’t know too much about Andre Ward but he has to be on his P’s an Q’s cause when Chad is sharp Chad is SHARP! I wish him all the luck, great kid.
TD: Any predictions on the outcome?
MS: I just hope its a good fight I can’t predict which way it will go?
TD: How about Sergio Martinez against Chavez Jr?
MS: Umm, I really couldn’t say. I just know that Julio Chavez Jr has to be in shape talking about conditioning its’ 95% of the game if he isn’t in shape, Sergio will beat him.
TD: Yeah Sergio is on his game right now. He just figures out ways to beat guys that is what I admire about him. I don’t think Chavez Jr. has been through too much adversity up to this point you know? Maybe spoon fed a bunch of guys who never belonged in the ring with him to begin with.What do you say about that?
MS: Well he hasn’t fought the caliber of opponents as Sergio fought but I think that Chavez can also be special its a big test for him.
TD: Now Saul “Canelo” Alvarez vs. Josesito Lopez. He is facing Josesito Lopez who actually got the fight by upsetting Victor Ortiz and even broking his jaw. Do you think Lopez is being rushed into the 154 division to soon?
MS: Umm, I really don’t know it depends what weight he walks the street around. If he walks the street around 154, I think he’s ready for the jump up in class other than that I think its a very decent fight he’ll be alright.
TD: Well I was recently schooled by his trainer Henry (Ramirez). So just for all the fans out there and people who don’t know, I believe he walks around probably around 170. He is also taller Canelo and 28 years old. NOT a little kid, he is a grown man I think he’ll be alright.
TD:So I know its your birthday or for the fans out there who didn’t know its your birthday.
MS: My birthday is the 29th.
TD: Would you like to give any birthday shout outs or say hello to some of your friends or fans?
MS: Well I just want to say, I want to thank everybody for wishing me a happy birthday and wish you good luck with any and every endeavor that you got planned. God bless.
TD: Hey I appreciate it Marlon. I wish you all the best it was a pleasure really and I hope to hear from you soon…
MS: You too thanks.
*This is one of the better moments of my short journalistic career. Sincerely, to meet and interview Marlon “the Magic Man” Starling, what a treat! I’ve talked to Manny Steward, Larry Merchant, Burt Sugar, and now Marlon Starling. I’ve been blessed.
Starling was a 2 time world welterweight champion who fought the best of his time such as Floyd Mayweather Sr, Johnny “Bump City” Bumphus, Donald “the Cobra” Curry, Mark Breland, Simon Brown, Loyd Honeyghan and Michael “2nd to Nunn” just to name a few. He is truly a legend and a hero in many people’s hearts and lives.
Starling has touched people outside the ring as well. His story is an inspirational, and he is a well respected fighter and father.
“So How’d ya do that there Marlon?”
“It’s just magic,” he replies.
This is a man that had a blue collar working class job after the glitz and glamor of the big lights and main event championships fights, and shows his well taught hard working ethics. Sporting supremely good hearted principals and morals, he wasn’t only taught, but teaches us through his actions as a human being and as an ex-champion. Thanks a lot boxing maniacs, this is Tommy D until next time.