Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Big Man and the Contender

Another hot night in the gym, although the temps had gone down a little outside.  JJ stopped by and talked about his adventures in Colorado.  The fight he lost there was the first one he had.  If he had won, he would have had three or four more to get the championship.

I took a quick break to fill up the water bottles, as Jamil and Eric got ready to spar.  Walking up the hallway, I spotted Leon at the front desk.  "Oh, no!" I thought, knowing that JJ was in the gym. I still remember that intense sparring session they had that left Leon hanging over the ropes.  But JJ was just visiting, and Leon cut his workout short.

JJ told me why he and Gio were not working together anymore.  It was just a matter of JJ feeling that Gio's training style didn't match his.  He said that Gio's been cool about the break-up, but he suspects that the older man may still be disappointed that JJ didn't continue with him. 

"There's no one for Hillari to spar with," Alan smiled.  None of the other women (Evangelina, Shay, Joan) were there.  "That's okay; I'm trying to avoid hot flashes," I said. 

JJ and I talked about people we knew who used to hang around Loyola Park.   I told him about running into Sam some time ago, and Igor coming in.  He was surprised to learn that Danny -- who wasn't there that evening -- had come back around.  "I haven't seen Montrell in a long time," I said, referring to the kid who was the star of the youth boxing program.  JJ hinted that Montrell might have gotten into some trouble with the law.  I hope that's not true. 

James, or Professor, as he likes to be called, came in again.  He has trained over at Seward Park, which is near where my late dad lived.  Professor would like to do some sparring in the future.  "I'm a good fighter," he said.  "I see that you're modest," Alan grinned. 

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