L.A. spies report Marty Cohen, the 92-year-old manager of Michael Dokes, was furious with an overweight Dokes' lethargic performance against Lionel Washington Monday night. Dokes, who weighed 253 1/2, stopped Washington in the eighth, but was cut badly in two places and dropped in the seventh. According to earwitnesses, Cohen, whom Dokes calls "Popsy," told Dokes, "I won't let you fight again if you ever get this out of shape." Luckily for Dokes, his poor effort was seen only on L.A.'s Prime Ticket cable network. Otherwise he may have lost all hope for a shot at Tyson.
It was lights, camera, distraction for Tommy Morrison Tuesday night in West Orange, N.J. Morrison, the 20-0 heavyweight who is John Wayne's grandnephew, agreed to allow Sylvester Stallone, Burt Young and Co. to invade his dressing room and corner before and after his bout with Lorenzo Canady at the South Mountain Arena to film scenes to be used in "Rocky V," Stallone's next excursion into phony pugilism in which Morrison will co-star as Stallone's protege.
The whole thing turned into a giant pain for Morrison when 25 Hollywood types crowded his dressing room before the bout, disrupting his prefight concentration. As a result, Morrison turned in a subpar performance against Canady, suffering a cut under his right eye and getting nailed repeatedly by a fighter who was stopped in less than a minute by Tyson in 1985.
John Brown, Morrison's trainer and co-manager, was said to be equally perturbed about the intrusion and regretted allowing it to take place. But still, Cayton and Brown will allow the 20-year-old Morrison, following a fight against washed-up Quick Tillis on Dec. 7, to put his career on hold for three months to complete the film. "It's a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity that will in no way detract from Tommy's boxing development," Cayton said. "It will pay him more money than he has made in all his fights put together and give him more worldwide recognition than has been enjoyed by any fighter with the exception of Ali and Tyson."
Funny P.S.: The last time celluloid boxing expert Burt Young was at the South Mountain Arena, he was collecting the limp form of Dave Sears, a Howard Beach light-heavyweight he managed who had just been KOd in 66 seconds by champion Bobby Czyz. "I don't understand this kid," Young said of Sears. "In the gym, he's the greatest fighter I ever seen. But in a fight, he just falls apart."