The ‘Mad Boxer’ Hank Lundy Finally Gets His Shot on the Big Stage

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untitledHank Lundy is not your average boxer. When you think of a boxer, you think of someone who can move, but can’t crack an egg – this is not the case with Lundy. Lundy now gets his shot on the big stage as a lifetime underdog fighting on the little cards taking the hard fights will get a chance on HBO against a foe, Thomas Dulorme, who is essentially the junior welterweight boogeyman.

Lundy has fought a who’s who of dreaded foes mostly on European only television or Friday Night Fights. In 2012, Lundy conducted an interview with me and stated that he wanted to bring a title to Friday Night Fights. Let’s take a pause and explain for those who do not speak boxing politics and clarify that statement. Friday Night Fights is viewed as the highest level of developmental, but developmental nonetheless. Why does his matter, well, money – most Friday Night Fight card fighters get paid at the least three times less than a premium cable main card match.

In late 2013 prior to Adrien Broner vs. Marcos Maidana, Lundy’s views had changed. Lundy who had been in the Adrien Broner camp leading up to the fight and spoke praises of the outspoken fighter talked about how he was hoping for a big fight on a major network. The business aspect had wised up Lundy a bit as he appeared from the outside looking in, one of a few fighters on a short list to fight LaMont Peterson for the IBF Junior Welterweight Title.

Lundy faced a list of tough guys who no one ever really wanted to face and the big problem with Lundy may have been what makes him endearing to fight fans – he just wants to fight. I often joke that Hank Lundy would fight Godzilla and only ask what the catch weight was and how was Godzilla looking this week. Lundy is a blue collar fighter coming from Philly, a place known for its hard work ethic and defense acumen. Lundy never complains, he just fights.

Once again, this Saturday Lundy faces a guy no one is eager to face as he faces Thomas Dulorme, a man coming off the biggest win of his career against Karim Mayfield in a fight that sort of fell flat on all accounts. Dulorme is just an odd match up for anyone; tall with absurd length as well as real power. Let’s also talk about how Dulorme also is able to stymie foes on the onside with holding that makes it hard to create offense in close.

That leads to the final act; the one that has some confused on this fight is the ability to take a punch. Both fighters suffered knockout losses that will seemingly haunt their careers for the short term and maybe long term, but here is a caveat – neither guy has been knocked out in this weight class. Lundy was knocked out at lightweight by John Molina Jr. with reports surfacing he had a cold during the fight and Delorme at welterweight at the hands of heavy handed Luis Carlos Abregu after controlling a majority of the fight.

So is this a storyline people are reading between the lines and not looking at the facts? Dulorme looked unsettled versus Mayfield, but I do not think he was on the way out. Meanwhile Lundy faced heavy punchers Viktor Postol, Olusegun Ajose and Angelo Santana getting dropped a total of zero times. My guess, probably, but boxing is full of groupthink. Let’s just look at classic examples of people just making absurd assumptions based off loud voices in boxing media, middle aged bloggers unhappy with their life, controlling the discourse i.e. Golovkin and Andre Ward.

Yes, this is sport, but it is also the circus. It is about how much money do you draw and do people care about your fight. Dulorme versus Lundy is a throwback fight, it is two fighters who had been castoffs regaining position by taking hard fights. When we talk about the negative more often than not, probably because it is easier, sort of like when people complain about boxing journalism, but offer no solutions. Dulorme and Lundy will get a shot, a shot to position into some sort of a title position, maybe the potentially vacated WBO junior welterweight title if WBO upholds its decision to strip Chris Algieri. Nonetheless, tune in a little bit earlier this weekend to see a fight that highlights the lifeblood of the sport, guys coming up the hard way and earning a shot, rather than being gifted one.