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Rare Alan Blyweiss Interview: Double Broken Nose Bloodbath Bout with Tommy Morrison

By Robert Brizel, Head Real Combat Media Boxing Correspondent

 

You heard it right. Former Washington D.C. Golden Gloves champion Alan Blyweiss of Pennsylvania, in an exclusive Real Combat Media interview, tells of the unbelievable time, several decades ago, when he fought the one and only Tommy ‘The Duke’ Morrison in an amateur AAU National Golden Gloves 175 open class four round bout. Morrison won the four round decision, as Blyweiss took him on a double broken nose bloodbath trip through living hell. The bloody bout probably should have been stopped, but as both combatants were a bloody mess of equal measure, the bout was allowed to continue on till its four round conclusion.

 

Robert Brizel: “Alan, it is wonderful to get your telephone call. How is your health today?”

 

Alan Blyweiss: “I had two falls today. I fell punch drunk, but my mind is a little better today than it has been (overall, more recently). You know, it’s funny, like those Rocky movies. Towards the end, Rocky would have flashbacks of his fights, and I have been having flashbacks from my bouts.”

 

Robert Brizel: “Had this happened to you before?”

 

Alan Blyweiss: “Not as often as they come (the bout flashbacks occur) now.”

 

Robert Brizel: “Tell me about your health diagnosis, your future prognosis, and your plan of recovery at Mount Sinai Hospital in New York City.”

 

Alan Blyweiss: “It’s called (I have been diagnosed with) Dementia Pugilistica. I am going to be treated by Dr. Barry Jordan of the New York State Athletic Commission. He is taking care of (going to supervise) all of my care, and he’s hooked up with my immediate plan of treatment. He feels the impression (level) of my treatment could be higher than they think (have recommended for me previously).”

Robert Brizel: “I’m delighted you called tonight! What a wonderful surprise to get your call and hear your voice!”

 

Alan Blyweiss: “You too! I have a respect for you as a boxing writer. If anyone can tell a story, it’s you. Thing have to be changed in boxing, or there will be many more like me.”

 

Robert Brizel: “It was a surprise when you contacted me over Facebook, and I responded, and then you called. I had spoken to your wife since your illness, and she said you mentioned me and my boxing writing for Real Combat Media at some point after you took ill.  You’ve been in the black for several months, and the boxing community was worried you might never come out of it. Alan, how long have you existed in a black hole with loss of short term memory? How much time have you lost?”

 

Alan Blyweiss: “I have lost parts of my memory going back eight years. For example,, I know who my children are, but I cannot remember certain sport events with them, cherished memories they told me about. I know who everyone in my family is, it is just pieces of my memory are forever missing. It may gradually get worse, I do not know. As soon as I came out of where I was, my wife told me you had spoken with her, and I saw you had contacted me on my Facebook, so I reached out to you. I have no memory of your call to me several months ago after I became ill. My wife has made me aware you did reach out to me.”

 

Robert Brizel: “You remember when I came to cover a boxing match with you two years ago?”

 

Alan Blyweiss: “Amazingly, I do remember everything about you! The captain and his gold chains. I remember picking you up at the train station, you staying with my family, talking with me at the kitchen table, and the boxing match you covered I was involved with in Lebanon, Pennsylvania at the Masons Hall…..but…..I cannot tell you what I had for breakfast, lunch or dinner today.”

 

Robert Brizel: “What was your amateur record? Where did you train?”

 

Alan Blyweiss: “Wow. My memory is working perfectly when you talk with me. Good moment. I trained at the Hillcrest Boxing Gym. It is a legendary gym in Washington D.C., where I was trained by Vandel McKann. I had 88 total amateur bouts. All of them were AAU and PAL (Police Athletic League bouts). I had 66 wins and 12 losses. I fought mostly between 178 pounds and 185 pounds novice and open class.”

 

Robert Brizel: “Do you still have goals in boxing?”

 

Alan Blyweiss: “I’m not done with boxing. I want to do training. That’s what I am thinking about the most. That’s where I excel. I can train fighters.”

 

Robert Brizel: “Alan, when did you cross paths with Tommy Morrison?”

 

Alan Blyweiss: “I turned pro in 1989. I fought Tommy, I want to say in 1984. It was the year he won the national AAU tournament. It was an open class bout, three rounds, and it went to a three round decision. Tommy won the decision. We fought a bloodbath.”

 

Robert Brizel: “How bloody was it?”

 

Alan Blyweiss: “My nose was bleeding pretty bad. So was his. They kind of wanted to stop it (the referee and the ringside officials), but, given both of our noses were broken, they were reluctant to stop it. They let the fight go its bloody way until its bloody conclusion.”

 

Robert Brizel: Were you and Tommy Morrison friends?”

 

Alan Blyweiss: “I never knew him until then.”

 

Robert Brizel: “After your bout, was Tommy friendly?”

 

Alan Blyweiss: “Yeah. Afterwards he came up to me and said ‘Damn! I thought I was the only white boy!’ We were the only white kids there (in the national AAU tournament).”

 

Robert Brizel: “What was Morrison like personally to fight?”

 

Alan Blyweiss: “He was a heavy hitter. Man did he have a hook! Tommy spoke well. Tommy was a class act kid. He knew he was gonna be something but was not cocky. Tommy was very humble.”

 

Robert Brizel: “In your entire amateur and professional career, was your bout with Tommy Morrison the one you remember the most?”

 

Alan Blyweiss: “Oh absolutely. (By the way) I never saw him again (after that day).”

 

Robert Brizel: “Years later, your father got an HIV/AIDS letter of inquiry on your behalf regarding your amateur fight with Tommy Morrison. What happened after your family got the letter from the Center for Disease Control?”

 

Alan Blyweiss: “They gave us a list of doctors we could go to get the bloodwork done done at no charge to get tested for HIV/AIDS.”

 

Robert Brizel:” Did you go?”

 

Alan Blyweiss: “Of yeah, absolutely. It was probably in 1997 or 1998 when I went for the blood testing. It was a couple of years after it was out (Morrison went public with his HIV diagnosis).”

 

Robert Brizel: “What happened with your HIV/AIDS blood test results? Were you relieved?”

 

Alan Blyweiss: “Yes, I was relieved, but for other reasons then, not just because of Tommy Morrison. I was pretty promiscuous at that time.”

 

Robert Brizel: “Do you think Tommy Morrison actually had HIV? For years before he made his successful comeback, he claimed Nevada had a false positive test, and stated he was HIV negative and had more recent blood tests to prove it. Your opinion of all this.”

 

Alan Blyweiss: “You know, when we all first heard about it (Morrison testing HIV positive), you heard statements Tommy made about his promiscuous lifestyle while he was a pro (during his career as a professional boxer). I think the Nevada HIV test result against Tommy Morrison was incorrect (however) if there was anything he got, Morrison got it from using unsterilized needles. You don’t go from light heavyweight to heavyweight like he went up in weight without using steroids to bulk up. Based on the Tommy Morrison I fought in the ring all the years ago, there is no way he could have gone up in weight like that, and emerge as a full-fledged heavyweight contender unless he was taking something.”

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Robert Brizel - Head Boxing Correspondent
Robert Brizel - Head Boxing Correspondent
Robert is the Head Boxing Correspondent for Real Combat Media Boxing since 2013. Robert is also a photographer and ringside reporter for the RCM Tri State region which includes NJ, NY and PA. Robert conducts exclusive interviews, provides historical boxing articles and provides editorial ringside coverage of major boxing events. You can contact or follow Robert on Facebook and by email at robertbrizel@realcombatmedia.com.