Please note that the URL for the WBAN site was originally incorrectly 
specified in this issue as www.wban.com instead of www.wban.net. 
The WBAN site can also be accessed at www.womenboxing.com.



TTTTT H   H  EEEEE
  T   H   H  E
  T   HHHHH  EEEEE
  T   H   H  E
  T   H   H  EEEEE

PPPP   OOOO  RRRR  TTTTT L       A   N   N DDDD  I   A   N   N TM
P   P O    O R   R   T   L      A A  NN  N D   D I  A A  NN  N
PPPP  O    O RRRR    T   L     AAAAA N N N D   D I AAAAA N N N
P     O    O R   R   T   L     A   A N  NN D   D I A   A N  NN
P      OOOO  R   R   T   LLLLL A   A N   N DDDD  I A   A N   N

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The Portlandian, the Internet's premier source of Tonya News

June 13, 2003 Edition - BLACK FRIDAY EDITION
(C) 2003 Portland Ice Skating Society
http://www.geocities.com/portice
*****************************************************************

Today, June 13th, will see Tonya participate in her fourth 
professional boxing match, this time at the Chinook Winds casino 
in Lincoln City, Oregon, a fight that will mark Tonya's boxing 
debut in her home state. Her opponent for this match is Emily 
Gosa, a first timer from Sulligenta, Alabama. It will be noted 
that the bout will occur on Friday the 13th, or "Black Friday", 
the traditional day of bad luck. We suspect it will turn out to 
be a bad day indeed for Gosa once Tonya gets stuck into her.


TONYA MOVES FROM VICTORY TO VICTORY

It's been an eventful three months since our last edition as 
Tonya continues in her new career. It's a period that has seen 
two victories and a change of trainer. March 15th saw Tonya win 
her first bout in professional boxing, in a match that was only 
her second fight. Her peformance against Shannon Birmingham in 
the four round match Gulfport, Miss, won her a unanimous 
decision from the judges. Tonya's Godmother, Linda Lewis, gave 
this account of Tonya's reaction:

  Dear Tonya fans:
  I just got off the phone with Tonya. She's back home from her
  first win in pro boxing in Gulfport Mississippi. She won with a
  4 point unanimous decision from the judges. Needless to say,
  she is very happy. Tonya wants you to know that she is feeling
  great, and is training hard for the next event. Once again she
  sends her love and thanks for all the support from you, her
  fans.

  Take care,
  Linda Lewis


Reports of the fight in the mainstream media have been relatively 
hard to find. The main newswires such as Reuters & the AP seem 
not to have picked it up at all (I guess they're only interested 
in stuff that makes Tonya look bad). However, we did come across 
a brief item in one of Tonya's hometown papers, the Portland 
Tribune, which featured this description of the fight from 
Tonya's trainer, Jeff Hargis:

    "Tonya did real well," says her trainer, Jeff Hargis. "She 
    landed a whole lot of right hands. She staggered (Birmingham) 
    several times but couldn't finish her off. That's just a lack 
    of ring experience."
    Hargis says a standing-room-only crowd of about 3,000 was on 
    hand for the card, which featured heavyweight Tim Witherspoon 
    in the main event.
    "The amazing thing was, we dressed after our fight and came 
    out to watch the Witherspoon fight, and I'll bet more than 
    2,000 people had left the building," Hargis says. "I guess 
    they came to watch Tonya fight."

As far as general coverage of Tonya's new career goes, The 
Tennessean has another interesting article about Tonya's training 
regime, and an interview with Hargis:

http://www.tennessean.com/sports/localsports/archives/03/03/29932
229.shtml

Finally, "Blades on Ice" had a relatively lengthy piece on 
Tonya's first fight (and probably the first time a boxing match 
has ever been covered by a figure skating magazine). As you'd 
expect from a mainstream skating site there's the usual snide 
anti-Tonya air about the article, plus the usual errors (Tonya 
had her plastic surgery way back when she did "Breakaway", not 
recently as the article suggests), but still some interesting 
stuff, particularly the fact that Tonya still skates. 
Unfortunately this has now disappeared from their web site and 
appears to be not included in the print edition.

Of his impressions of working with Tonya so far, Hargis is quoted 
as saying:

"The Tonya I know is very cooperative, very receptive to 
constructive criticism. She is her own worst critic; that's the 
biggest problem we have. She gets frustrated at herself and loses 
focus a little bit. She has great upper-body development and 
transfers energy real well. I have been surprised with her body 
structure. Typically, the longer, leaner fighters have the better 
jab; she has a tremendous jab. She has great aptitude in picking 
up technique and footwork. I think she can be a champion in 12 to 
18 months."

Tonya is reported as saying of skating and boxing: "There 
are a lot of similarities between the two. You have to work on 
smoothness of movement, endurance and you have to pay attention 
and be able to react. It's a raw sport. It's all about power."

Thanks to "Leo", who posts on the tonyaharding.org forum, for 
finding alot of this stuff.


IT'S ALL OK IN OKLAHOMA - TONYA BLOODIED BUT UNBOWED

Tonya's next bout was to be at the Creek Nation Gaming Center in 
Tulsa, Oklahoma on March 28th. In the leadup to the fight, 
Tonya's press agent sent us this release about her career so far:

  Tonya Harding entered the boxing arena as a celebrity easily
  defeating lesser celebrity, Paula Jones, in a TKO. The next 
  time she entered the ring it was for real, up close and 
  personal. In her first wild bout on Saturday, February 22, fans 
  howling vociferously, Tonya lost a split decision by a one-
  point margin to Samantha Browning, another novice also in her 
  pro debut. No excuses, no sympathy with crimson face soaked 
  with sweat, Tonya smiled as she posed for the cameras and vowed 
  she would train even harder, endure the pain and seek to become 
  a Champion once again. It was important that she not crawl back 
  into her room with her tail between her legs; she had to keep 
  reminding herself that she merely lost, but she did not fail.

  Tonya Harding has plenty of heart; she does not recognize the 
  word defeat; she also understands the posturing and the 
  psychological warfare indigenous to boxing. She remained 
  undeterred. Immediately afterwards she began training in 
  earnest for the next fight which would take place on March 15th 
  in Gulfport Miss. With deafening sounds from her new calling, 
  she trained intensely, a determined and willing pupil with a 
  highly competent and dedicated staff. Running to improve her 
  endurance, shadow boxing, sparring, and visualizing in deep 
  states of relaxed meditation, she envisioned her next opponent: 
  Shannon Birmingham, only this time the results were totally in 
  her favor: in a four round match, Tonya seriously overwhelmed 
  her adversary in a unanimous decision.

  But there was no time to waste; no reason to gloat; back into 
  the gym to train and learn and progress was her trainer Jeff 
  Hargis' advice to her, for in only ten days on March 28th, 
  Tonya would be in the ring warring against Alejandra Lopez. 
  Tonya is a scrapper or "Spunky" as Mike Tyson described her. 
  She knows what she has to do and resolute to do it. The next 
  nine months are completely booked with tougher matches, 
  unrelenting training sessions and many hours of intensive 
  meditation. This bad girl will undoubtedly prove to all those 
  "legitimate" boxing pundits and nay-sayers that Tonya Harding 
  is a determined contender who deserves a right to start 
  somewhere and strive to become a world champion.

Proving that her Gulfport win was not a fluke, Tonya then 
proceeded to follow up her earlier victory with another win, this 
time against 18 year old Alejandra Lopez of Fort Smith, Arkansas, 
another inexperienced newbie who had been boxing for about one or 
two months. Lopez was reported as being supposedly very 
enthusiastic about the fight and was quoted as saying she "wants 
to come into the sport with a bang." Tonya obliged, though not in 
the way Lopez would have hoped.

Linda Lewis reports thus:

> It's 11:20 PM here, and I just got a phone call with our little 
> friend from Tulsa. She called me and was very excited to report 
> that she won again. She wanted me to write to you so you could 
> let the fans know. It was another unanimous decision ( 4 point 
> spread ) by the judges. Needless to say, she's very happy. She 
> said she's not hurt, and that her opponent was very gracious to 
> her. She ( Tonya ) signed autographs for over an hour.
> So this was FYI from me.
> Best to you as always,
> Linda

By all accounts this was not an easy fight for Tonya with the 
WBAN site (www.wban.net) describing a bloody contest. Tonya 
sustained a nosebleed in the first round and by the second round 
Lopez was bleeding too. Unfortunately, in a tabloidy style that 
appears to be typical of the site, it cites reports by un-named 
"insiders" to rubbish Tonya's efforts, describing the match as "a 
cat fight" and "pretty bad". They did, however, describe the 
venue as sold out with a 900 strong crowd.

Fortunately a more positive and objective report came from the 
"Tulsa World" newspaper, which ran a short item on the match:

> Purists might view former Olympic figure skater Tonya Harding's 
> venture into boxing as a lark, but it would be hard to deny her 
> determination. 
> 
> Seconds into her match against Alejandra Lopez, Harding was on 
> the receiving end of a shot to her nose. Blood leaked from her 
> right nostril, but it only served to spur her aggression. 
> 
> She unleashed a combination to the face of Lopez that also drew 
> blood. By the time the four-round bout ended, the white satiny 
> top Lopez was wearing was heavily splattered with blood. 
> 
> Harding (2-1) earned $10,000 for her unanimous four-round 
> decision over Lopez, making her pro debut, in the women's 
> super featherweight bout. 
> 
> "She is a gladiator at heart," trainer Jeff Hargis said. 
> "That's something you have to have. You can't train that." 
> March 28, 2003 - Tulsa, Oklahoma


For an inside view of the fight, this press release of 31 Mar 
2003 gives a behind the scenes look:

  On Friday, March 28, Tonya Harding sat in the dressing room of 
  the Creek Nation Casino in OK with her trainer Jeff Hargis & 
  Will Massie. She had already worked up a stiff sweat in 
  preparation for her third professional battle against Alejandra 
  Lopez. Tonya was very nervous, but confident that she would 
  prevail. Then suddenly she leaped toward the rest room and 
  retched. Seconds later she was led into the ring amidst the 
  mixed cheers and jeers of 2000 fans, an over capacity crowd. 
  She immediately asked Jeff Hargis to "take her down." 

  His words to her were soft and reassuring. In milliseconds the 
  roar of the crowd hushed into a distant hum. Deep solid breaths 
  brought on increased relaxation and with that, the realization 
  that she had become a savage predator with only one intention: 
  to go after her prey. Jeff gave her suggestions of 
  invincibility and impenetrability; that she could not be hurt; 
  she could almost see the lightening rays emanating from the 
  tips of her gloves. It was as though a veil had dropped across 
  her face changing and morphing her. The sound of the first bell 
  produced the desired Pavlovian response. 

  Tonya's nose had already been broken during her last fight, yet 
  she went after Lopez with the grace and cunning of a stalking 
  cat. Tonya began to throw swift left jabs, bobbing and weaving, 
  when a wild blow struck her nose causing her to bleed. Tonya 
  took her glove, wiped it across her nose, and momentarily 
  glanced at the blood; she lunged toward Lopez, checked and 
  suppressed both of her hands, then hit her with a right and 
  broke her nose. With blood pouring from both nostrils and a 
  split lip, Alejandra Lopez kept slugging as Tonya drove her 
  backwards with devastating right hands; until the bell sounded.

  In her corner Tonya Harding was unusually silent; that tell 
  tale shroud still frozen across her face while Jeff worked on 
  her bloodied nose. "Ouch, that hurt!" is all she said. At that 
  moment Lopez had one foot out of the ring ready to quit when 
  her trainer told her no; she had to see it through. But 
  throughout the rest of the fight Alejandra threw solid punches 
  and fought with dignity and distinction.

  At the sound of the second bell both fighters rushed out with 
  Tonya making use of the strong right hand that she had been 
  perfecting for months. Lopez was stunned and staggered and had 
  it not been for a local ruling, she would have been given a 
  standing eight count. With both fighters covered in blood and 
  punching continuously the crowd screamed violently; calling for 
  Tonya to "kick her ass." Tonya still in predatory mode drilled 
  down the center and followed up with punishing body punches 
  that staggered Lopez once again; but the bell saved her.

  The fourth round belonged to Tonya exclusively as she 
  unrelentingly hit Alejandra with right crosses and body shots. 
  At the sound of the bell, both fighters hugged in the middle of 
  the ring and Tonya held her hands up to the audience as they 
  cheered loudly for her. With her gloves removed, the look on 
  Tonya's face changed dramatically as she smiled and told Lopez 
  how much she enjoyed the match. The unanimous decision was in 
  Tonya Harding's favor 40-36.

  The roar of the crowd didn't cease until Tonya emerged from her 
  dressing room only to find an endless line of people waiting 
  for her autograph. Two hours later and 2,000 signed photos, she 
  was still not finished; the whole time she was holding a tissue 
  up to her nose to abate the bleeding. Finally she was pulled 
  away and taken out.

  In the minds of both trainers Tonya Harding is no longer a 
  skater; she is a bona fide boxer; or as Will says: she has a 
  "heart from hell." This girl truly wants to be a champion; and 
  people identify with that. Tonya is turning her life around by 
  training hard, which convince all onlookers that she is not a 
  joke or a freak. When a competitor signs a four-year contract, 
  it's no longer lighthearted; and certainly not a circus act. 
  Tonya Harding is a professional boxer. She obeys her trainers 
  and does exactly what she is told to do. The days of temper
  tantrums and prima dona antics are gone. Her effectiveness and 
  ability has surpassed that of any fighter Jeff Hargis has ever 
  trained. All of her past indiscretions adds to the value of her 
  name and, as she constantly advises interviewers: "do not dwell
  on my past; but evaluate me for what I am doing now; and if I 
  get beat I'll get back up again. Just show me some respect for 
  my efforts."


Tonya's next two fights were to have been May 2nd in Tulsa, OK 
and May 9th in Iowa. Unfortunately these had to be canceled due 
to the broken nose. The exact details are unclear - some reports 
say it was because of damage in her last fight and others say it 
was broken during sparring, but either way it seems that on the 
advice of her doctor Tonya pulled out. "She has been at home, 
taking some time off to recuperate," trainer Hargis said.


TONYA HIRES NEW TRAINER

Then, a bombshell development. In an article from the Portland 
Tribune on May 16, Tonya announced she had fired Hargis as a 
trainer and hired his assistant, Will Massie:

http://portlandtribune.com/archview.cgi?id=18198

According to the article, Tonya ditched Hargis after learning 
unsavory things about his past, such as alleged convictions for 
gun possession and prostitution, which Hargis denies. For his 
part, Hargis claims he was fired by Tonya for being too strict, 
accusing her of being uncooperative and partying too hard. 

According to Hargis, Tonya "needs to cut back on her night-life 
activity," and "She wants to eat once a day. She needs to eat 
five or six small meals a day. Things like that we would disagree 
on; it's like pulling teeth to get her to do what you need to 
do." All of this is quite an about-face from what he told "Blades 
on Ice", where he said "the Tonya I know is very cooperative, 
very receptive to constructive criticism". He also claims that 
Massie has been using drugs and plying Tonya with booze, which 
Massie and Tonya deny.

It appears there was also disagreement over where Tonya would 
train, with Hargis reluctant to travel to Vancouver where there 
are no proper boxing facilities. Hargis believes that Massie is 
not qualified to be a trainer.

Concerning the upcoming fight, Massie promises a better, more 
seasoned fighter than before, and is quoted as predicting a 
knockout. He also says that Tonya has switched to training in a 
real gym as opposed to the hotel rooms she has been using in the 
past.


END OF AN ERA - TONYA'S OLD RINK CLOSES

It is with sadness that we report that according to an article in 
the "Oregonian", Tonya's former home rink during her time as 
champion, at the Clackamas Town Center Mall, closed on April 
20th. 

The rink has had a checkered history since the mall opened in 
1981. In 1988 there was a proposal to close the rink and replace 
it with an antique carousel, but this fizzled largely after a 
plea to save it by Tonya, who was 17 at the time and already a 
nationally ranked skater. In recent years the rink operators have 
had financial difficulty, such as Ice Chalet and Dorothy Hamill's 
failed venture. Its heyday was in early 1994 when thousands 
thronged to watch Tonya practice for the Olympics. It even once 
bore a large banner about Tonya, provided by her fan club.

Ironically, the very boom in skating that the Tonya/Nancy 
incident caused has in fact contributed to the Clackamas rink's 
demise. There are now simply too many ice rinks in the Portland 
area according to those in the skating rink industry. In addition 
to the Lloyd Center rink where Tonya currently skates, Sherwood 
Ice Arena opened in July 2000 and Mountain View Ice Arena, which 
has two full-size rinks, opened in Vancouver in 1998. Valley Ice 
Arena in Beaverton is yet another rink in the greater Portland 
area and there has been talk of a $10 million ice rink being 
developed in Pioneer Courthouse Square. Believing that the money 
needed to upgrade the Clackamas mall rink to a competitive 
standard with these new rinks would be better spent elsewhere in 
the mall, the mall management have decided to close the rink 
down, and in doing so have ended an era in Portland's skating 
history.


COMPULSORY FIGURES: ICE WARS HEAT UP OVER JUDGING REFORM

Now that Tonya's not doing much skating anymore, some of the 
Tonyaphobic squares on rec.sport.skating.ice.figure are 
complaining that our e-zine is off-topic in that group. 
Accordingly, we hereby introduce "compulsory figures", a new 
section in which we engage in one of our favorite activities, 
namely hacking into the croooks and incompetent bozos who run ice
skating these days. The way things are going, there should be 
plenty of material to keep this section filled up for quite some 
time.

The past few months have not only been busy ones for Tonya but 
also for skating fans as well. The first few months of the year 
saw the formation of a new skating lobby group, Skatefair, a 
group of skating fans dedicated to opposing Speedy's secret 
judging "reforms". This group now has a web site, 
www.skatefair.org, and has organized a successful protest at 
Worlds in Washington DC on March 29 that got considerable media 
attention. Photographs of the protest can be seen on the web 
site.

Now another new player has stepped up to the plate, if you'll 
pardon the mixed metaphors: the World Skating Federation, an 
organization founded by disaffected skating judge Ron Pfenning, 
will cover only figure skating, retain the old 6.0 scoring system 
and promises to adopt a zero-tolerance approach to cheating. Most 
controversially, however, is its stated aim of ultimately 
replacing the ISU itself as the official Olympic skating body. 
Such a vision may at first seem ridiculously optimistic, but a 
quick run-through of the list of the WSF's supporters on the WSF 
web site (at www.worldskating.org) shows there's some heavy 
hitters involved, including lots of former skating champions and 
several names familiar to readers of r.s.s.i.f., so this can't 
just be dismissed as someone's idle fantasy.

How have the ISU and their toadies reacted to this blatant 
challenge to their crummy rotten system? Why, the same way they 
always do when someone has the guts to speak up for what's right 
- with threats, abuse & intimidation, off course. The ISU quickly 
issued a statement that judges or referees endorsing the WSF 
could be removed and national bodies suspended. The USFSA, 
initially supportive of the new organization's aims, then issued 
a statement making it clear it did not support the Federation 
itself, and warned delegates to its recent annual conference not 
to endorse the Federation for fear of endangering their athletes. 
Skate Canada went further, denouncing the Federation and 
threatening expulsion for any member endorsing or supporting its 
activities. It appears that like Microsoft, the ISU won't 
tolerate any competition.

We say these guys need to stick "backbone" on their next shopping 
list. Firstly, the reality is that figure skating will never get 
a fair deal from speedskaters at the ISU, who don't understand 
figure skating, and never will. Even if by some miracle they 
clean up the corruption (which doesn't look likely) this will not 
change. In addition, the speedskaters at the ISU are in fact 
heavily subsidized by figure skating's revenue, so expecting them 
to let figure skaters control their own destiny is like expecting 
turkeys to vote for an early Thanksgiving. The only solution is 
for figure skating to get its own federation and the WSF seems 
the best candidate to emerge in a long time.

As for who should be playing the heavy, it's the USFSA that 
should be threatening the ISU, not the other way around. The 
USFSA controls the US ladies, who are the jewel in the crown of 
the Winter Olympics. As Christine Brennan pointed out in a recent 
article, given that the Olympics are largely funded by the US TV 
networks that puts the USFSA in the drivers seat as far as giving 
orders, no matter what the ISU or the IOC say about dumping 
"rogue" federations from the Olympics.

NBC has paid billions for the rights to cover the Winter Olympics 
all the way up to 2010. They aren't going to be at all happy if 
there's no Sarah's, Sasha's & Michelle's gliding around come 2006. 
We suspect they'd be having a little chat with Mr. Rogge if he 
insisted on siding with Speedy and not recognizing the New World 
Order in skating that's unfolding. They might like to remind him 
of the 1980 Moscow Olympics, which turned into a joke when the 
Americans didn't show up (he'll need to be reminded, as just 
about everyone's fogotten about Moscow - it was that big a 
failure). The outcome would be that it would be Speedy - not the 
USFSA - that would be getting suspended, and probably out of a 
10th floor window by a bunch of Russian mafioski given the way 
skating is run these days.


GILLOOLY IS NANCY-BASHING AGAIN

No, not that Nancy, fortunately. 

The Oregonian has reported that "Stone Cold" Jeff Gillooly, the 
man responsible for the destruction of Tonya's skating career, 
has been arrested for domestic violence against his ex-wife 
Nancy. This is the second time Gillooly has been in trouble for 
this (he was arrested for the same thing 3 years ago - shortly 
afterwards they divorced), so it comes as no surprise. Officers 
with the Portland Police Family Services Division arrested 
Gillooly, now known as "Jeff Stone", at his Southeast Portland 
home last month. He was booked into Multnomah County jail on a
charge of fourth-degree assault and released on $10,000 bail. 

Sgt. Brian Schmautz, Portland Police Bureau spokesman, is quoted 
as saying Gillooly is accused of striking his ex-wife while she 
was holding one of their children during a visit to Gillooly's 
home in April. Schmautz said the charge against Gillooly will be 
a felony because a child was present, so hopefully this loser 
will finally be going down for some serious time in the Big House 
at last - which is what he should have got for the Kerrigan 
business.

If nothing else these events back up Tonya's claims that Gillooly 
was a violent man who abused her and shows she had good reason to 
fear retribution for not revealing his involvement in the 
Kerrigan affair earlier.


PORTLAND PORN PIRATE HITS AN ICEBERG

And while on the subject of people who never seem to learn, long 
time readers will recall that back in 1999 we chronicled the 
strange case of "Roy Edwards", the former Tonya webmaster who 
turned out to be in fact Jim Maxey, one of the Pacific 
Northwest's most notorious cyberporn dealers. For those of you 
who came on the scene since then, you can read all about it at 
http://www.geocities.com/portice/maxey.htm

Back in the early 90's Maxey got sued by Playboy for trade mark & 
copyright infringement, something that eventually cost him half a 
million dollars. Well, it looks like Maxey-pad (as we Tonyaphiles 
call him) is up to his old tricks: a source in the Portland area 
informs us that he's now in trouble with Paramount Pictures for 
the doing same thing. It appears he spliced a whole pile of his 
porn footage into about 15 minutes of "Titanic" without asking 
their say-so, always a bad idea given Hollywood's hard-nosed 
attitude towards on-line pirates these days. Now it looks like 
he'll be made to walk the plank by Paramount's lawyers. Hopefully 
he will follow in the wake of that famous ocean liner and sink 
without trace, something that all Tonya supporters will welcome.

We guess it just goes to show that a leopard really can't change 
its spots. Once a rip-off artist, always a rip-off artist.


P.S.: And by the way, happy birthday to former "Skater" editor 
Joe Haran! We hope that he didn't have a Black Friday.

*****************************************************************
VISIT THESE GREAT TONYA WEB SITES:

PortIce - http://www.geocities.com/portice
David House - http://www.tonyaharding.org
Charlie Main - http://www.charliesweb.com/tonya/tonya.html
Puppetboy - http://www.puppetland.com/mirrortony2.html
Valerie Smith - http://www.olywa.net/radu/valerie/LilHam.html
Swan Lake - http://members.tripod.com/~TonyaHarding/index.html
Blades of Gold - http://members.tripod.com/tmhfan/index.html
Pegasus Times - http://www.pegasustimes.com/harding/
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