Last Saturday I went to a screening of a documentary film called Toy Tiger and if you're a fan of boxing I suggest you find a way to see it.
Hafey was a terrific fighter from Nova Scotia, Canada who moved to Los Angeles during one of the greatest periods in boxing history. He was a number one contender in the ultra-competitive Featherweight Division throughout much of the 1970's.
I loved learning about Hafey who was one of the biggest hitters in boxing even though he was only 5-2 and gave up tremendous reach to almost everyone he fought. But the best part of the film was the history of the great Featherweights that Hafey fought and who were also featured in the film. They included the great Ruben Olivares, Art's pal "School Boy" Bobby Chacon, Danny "Little Red" Lopez, Alexis Arguello and Ruben Castillo.
Hafey fought all of them except Castillo, although Ruben was featured prominently in the film because he fought all of these guys and was a good friend of Hafey. (Somebody get this guy back on TV, he's funny, smart and a great guy to boot!)
That was a truly great time for boxing in Los Angeles and around the world. Crowds in the tens of thousands watched bouts every week at the Forum and the Olympic Auditorium as well as venues in Sacramento and San Diego as well.
At the screening many of these greats were in attendance and it was a real privilege to get to meet and shake hands with most of them.
The director Brad Little did extensive research to re-create the period and tell the story of all of these boxing greats and I recommend it highly to anyone who is a true boxing fan.
Here is a link to the website where you can find out about screenings or buy a copy of the DVD online.
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