BLUES FOR JUMBO CUMMINGS
by Tony Fitzpatrick
Jumbo Cummings was a hard-luck guy. He'd done 12 years on a murder beef in Joliet when, in the late 1970s, he rose to some prominence as a heavyweight fighter. Boxing had just finished its golden age of great heavyweights -- Muhammad Ali, Joe Frazier, Jimmy Young, Ronnie Lyle, Earnie Shavers -- the list goes on and on. The early ‘70s had perhaps the greatest line-up of heavyweights in the history of the sport. If you take a look at the top ten heavyweight fighters of that period, you quickly realize that the clowns wearing those belts today would not have gotten employment sparring with those guys.