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Ricky Hatton is a legend!
Drug problem or no drug problem, Hitman deserves respect for his boxing career
Posted Sep 15, 2010 by Jeff Dawson
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I’ve going to stick me neck out here and defend Ricky Hatton despite his recent bad publicity. I’m even going to go as far as say that he is a legend of the sport that he has now disgraced with his cocaine-fuelled benders out on the town.
And the reason I’m going to do this is because no sportsman should be labelled for what they did off the pitch, canvas, oche or wherever it is they perform.
Hatton is a legend for one reason and one reason only. In the ring he was an entertainer. He helped propel the sport back to the big time. He was box office. He drew massive crowds and sold tickets just because he was fighting.
Ok he may have lost a few fights, notably against Floyd Mayweather Jnr and Manny Pacquiao, the two best pound-for-pound boxers on the planet. He may have enjoyed many rampages through bars when he wasn’t training. He may have been found out for snorting the white stuff.
But there aren’t many boxing fans out there whom wouldn’t be happy if he turned around tomorrow and said he was clean and was going to give it another crack. If you say you would then you don’t love the sport.
Fair enough he has fallen off the wagon in a big way since his retirement but look at how many other professional sportsmen have fallen foul of drink and drugs or other problems after hanging up their gloves or their boots.
George Best. Joe Calzaghe. Mike Tyson. Paul Gascoigne. Frank Bruno. Maradona. The list goes on.
Ricky Hatton was one reason I love boxing. He’s one fighter I would always watch and pay to watch. He’s a character. He’s a legend of boxing and that’s what people should remember when we see him struggling to cope with retirement.
For the sake of his family and friends, as well as boxing, I hope he gets clean and I wish him all the best in his pursuit of this. If his career is anything to go by, the Hitman, will knock the habit out!