The Icon Teddy Atlas
Icon is defined as “a person or thing regarded as a representative symbol or as worthy of veneration”. In combat sports we see lots of Icons as athletes, but how many trainers can be considered an Icon? Or voices are instantly linked to a sport?
If you were to make a list of non athlete icons in the world of boxing there could only be a few names on that list. Without a doubt or question, Teddy Atlas would be on that list. If only for his years being a commentator for ESPN Boxing.
Teddy has called some of the biggest fights to ever to be held within the ropes of the ring. Live commentating for ESPN for 21 years takes a special personality. Mr. Atlas Certainly has that going for him. Not to mention the wealth of knowledge a lifetime training some of the best boxers on the planet will earn you.
Teddy started off boxing with the hall of fame trainer Cus D’Amato in New York. Yes the very same Cus that was Mike Tysons head coach. In fact Teddy and Mike shared training space and time together until 1982 when Teddy parted with Cus and his gym.
Teddy began a career in training boxers that has been four decades in the making. It has cemented him as one of the top trainers in the world if not of all time.
In the 1980’s He was responsible for Chris Reids run at the Super Middleweight title going 20-2 as a career. Chris surged up the rankings quickly and lost his only attempt the title, then calling it a career.
Teddy had a hand that pushed Donny “Golden Boy” Lalonde toward his Light Heavyweight title but ultimately the two parted ways. Under Atlas, Donny went undefeated in eight fights, but much like Cus, Teddy ran a tight ship. That wasn’t Donny’s style as he was more of a “Free Spirit”.
In the 1990’s Atlas was training Micheal Moorer. With the help of atlas Moorer did something that Mike Tyson never did, Beat Evander Holyfield for the Heavyweight Championship of the world. Moorer lost the title to George Foreman, but regained the title once again before Atlas and more parted ways.
In the early 2000’s Micheal Grant brought in Atlas to help with his camps. In 9 fights together Grant had only lost two fights during that 11 fight period that Atlas was on board. Not bad when you are in the top 10 in the world in all three major promotions.
In the 2010’s Atlas showed he is more than your average trainer. He began working with Heavyweight Alexander Povetkin. Povetkin was the 2004 Olympic Heavyweight champion and had won several pro championships in Europe. During that time Alexander had yet to face the best the boxing world had to offer.
It was at this time that Atlas had stepped in and urged Alexander from fighting then Champion Wladamir Klitchko. Atlas didn’t believe he was ready and betted his trainer’s cut on the fact. After this Povetkin won the WBA Heavyweight title from Ruslan Chagaev.
Alexander out struck his opponent by double. Alexanders 152 to Ruslans 72 strikes landed.
Now going into 2020 a fresh new decade, Teddy Atlas still has top boxers under his tutelage. He is Currently training The Russian Nail Oleksandr Gvozdyk who is the former WBC light heavyweight Champion.
Fine tune your fundamentals with Teddy Atlas!
So going into his fifth decade of training what makes him so good? A couple things stand right out. His tactical mindset is second to none. No one can help fighters make adjustments to top level opponents like Teddy does.
So much so his long rants are legendary. Just look up “Teddy Atlas Corner” in any search engine and you will get some of his classic speeches. At one point Atlas took the corner stool from a fighter. He got criticism for the move but that fighter came back and won the fight. So was it crazy or was it as Atlas said, Exactly what he needed to get it done.
The other reason Teddy is so good is his knowledge of the basics. Both movement and striking in the context of Boxing. He knows how to blend the two together into a seamless system where your offense becomes your defense and vice versa.
Check out how passionate Teddy is with that Peekaboo system with a bonus history lesson thrown in.
Teddy took the time to outline what he believes are the keystones of boxing fundamentals. He isn’t just going over the jab cross he is in true Teddy Atlas style taking a deep dive into the subject.
Literally taking the time to show how to properly Stretch and Wrap the hands, the big do’s and don’ts of boxing.
One of the more interesting concepts Teddy goes over is how to set traps. This is something that is not often talked about, almost like it is a secret in the world of boxing. Teddy doesn’t believe it is something fancy, it is closer to “fishing” then magic.
Check out this quick video from the current instructional on how to set traps.
Capping off his instructional are concepts behind good shadow boxing and working the heavy bag with a purpose.
So even if you are new to boxing or a veteran of the ring who doesn’t have something to learn from the man who has trained 9 World Champions?
Take a look at his series on fundamentals here!