One on One With The Amazing Edison Miranda
07.12.06 - By Scoop Malinowski: Someday they're going to make a movie about Edison Miranda. They have to. Though he's just 25, his life story is already one of the most amazing, event-filled dramas you will ever hear about any sportsman.
Article posted on 07.12.2006
If you didn't already know, Edison was abandoned by his family at one-month old. He later escaped the dubious parental supervision of other family members and by age nine, Edison Miranda was living completely on his own in Colombia. Sometimes he was forced by necessity to eat road kill in order to survive. By age 12 he was working a full-time man's job in construction. At 14 he was a cattle butcher.
At a recent New York City show, on the way back to my seat, I spotted a man standing inconspicuously in front of a wide column, watching the action. Hey, wait a minute, that looks like EDISON MIRANDA! I thought to myself. I stopped in my tracks. I love Edison Miranda, just on seeing that brief ESPN2 promo before the Howard Eastman fight..
Are you Edison Miranda? He smiled politely.
We talked for a while, his broken English, just good enough to communicate somewhat effectively. I could tell immediately that despite barely any formal schooling or education, Edison is a very intelligent man. And despite ascending from practically the gutter, Edison has an aura of class and dignity about him. Shouldn't a guy like Edison Miranda be recognized by, like, Time magazine as one of the most fascinating people in the world?
Wow, what a surprise to see Edison Miranda at a club show in the middle of winter in New York City. I've wanted to meet and interview him since that Eastman fight. My friend David Rivera helped with translation (here are some excerpts):
Edison's heroes? "First and foremost, God is my hero. Because I had a dream and during an epiphany God spoke to me and so I became a fighter (age 15)."
Early boxing memory? "My first memory was my natural trainer saying, He's good. But with practice he'll be better than everybody else."
His pre-fight feeling? "The same way you see me here - nice and relaxed. Because I'm the best. And the best don't worry."
His most painful boxing moment? "Was the beginning of my career, when I had epiphany from God to join boxing (age 15). It was a very low grade gym, they had a lot of bugs and mosquitos and when I joined the gym I was sleeping on the street. I had no other place to live. So I lived in that particular gym. That's my most painful moment ever."
I asked Edison about his lasting memories from the controversial decision loss to IBF champ Arthur Abraham in Wetzlar, Germany?
"Just recently on the 23rd of September there was a fight in Germany that left me a bit emotional. Because it brought to focus on the fact of people in their materialisms and not their emotions. So that left me somewhat ashamed."
When asked if the experience in Germany had taught him anything or altered him in any way, Miranda became philosophical.
"From the last fight I don't feel so much different. You gotta find time to smile. You can't just smile when you win, you have to smile when you lose. Because even when you lose, there's a lesson. It's nothing. I just learned I'm gonna work better, I'm gonna try harder. I'm not gonna go in there and give 80%, you gotta give 100% every time. And this is how I'm gonna win the people over.
You gotta remember, I started at the bottom and worked to the top. I can fall back to the bottom but I'm always gonna make it back to the top. And when I make it to the top, I gotta try harder to get above that. Always do your best no matter what. Try your hardest. I go out there and sacrifice myself. I'll die in that ring before I let my fans down."
Miranda is one of those athletes who truly and sincerely appreciates each and every one of his supporters, like Roberto Duran, Kassim Ouma, Vinny Pazienza, Tito Trinidad to name a few.
"I get highly upset with other boxers like Miguel Cotto when fans approach them and ask for autographs and they say, No, they don't have time. I'm here for my fans. I fight for my fans. And it's all about the fans.
Edison Miranda will return to the ring on December 16th in South Florida against Willie Gibbs. The bout will be televised on HBO.
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