Category: Archive

McLoughlin, Toliaferro will finally settle feud

February 16, 2011

By Staff Reporter

By Jay Mwamba

Eddie McLoughlin may only have one leg, but he’s convinced that he’ll still be able to generate enough power in his fists to flatten rival boxing trainer John Toliaferro, who has two artificial hips, when the two meet in a $20,000 winner-take-all challenge match at the Elks Club in Queens on Friday night.

"I’m in terrific shape and as mean as a snake," the 42-year-old Mayo-born contractor, who lost his right leg in a motorcycle crash at age 19, said last weekend.

McLoughlin’s trainer, Alo Kelly, gave his gutsy charge the thumbs up after some 10 weeks of preparation. "If he [Toliaferro] can’t dance, he doesn’t have a chance," the young amateur prospect, who is normally trained by McLoughlin, said.

McLoughlin himself offered a 100 percent guarantee of victory, "as sure as night follows day," he added, even while conceding that he’d probably "sacrifice" the first two rounds of the scheduled three-rounder to Toliaferro, on account of the latter’s speed.

"The guy’s fast," he noted. "But it’s a matter of being in shape, which I am, and cutting off the ring, which I will [do]."

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And the 44-year-old Toliaferro, a former pro who retired in 1989 with a 35-6 record, is likely to spot McLoughlin nearly 40 pounds.

He said last Sunday that he was down to 144 pounds but was likely to tip 147 pounds (welterweight) on fight day. McLoughlin expects to peak in the 180s for the challenge match, which has no weight stipulation.

"I don’t see him lasting three rounds," Toliaferro said, adding that he was in good condition himself.

Without divulging his sources, the Harlem resident said: "I know that he hasn’t really been training, because he has a hard job. He’ll probably tire in the second round."

Still, Toliaferro, who had an Irish stepfather, said McLoughlin should be inspired by his Irish pride, and would be a worthy foe.

"I’ll be looking for him to be throwing a left hook and to be real aggressive," Toliaferro said.

The father of five children whose ages range from 22 to 12, Toliaferro is favored by Gleason’s Gym members to win on points.

It’s at Gleason’s where the little feud, which has led to their match, developed.

"It’s a silly thing, like all feuds are, between two guys that should know better," Gleason’s proprietor, Bruce Silverglade, has said.

The McLoughlin-Toliaferro fight will follow an amateur show featuring some members of McLoughlin’s Queens-based Irish Ropes BC boxers. The first bout is scheduled for 7:30 p.m.

For further information on the show, call (718) 326-1652 or (718) 429-8870.

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