The 20 lowlights from 'Celebrity Boxing'
By Kevin Jackson
Page 2 editor

If you missed "Celebrity Boxing" on Fox on Wednesday night, you didn't miss much actual boxing. But you did miss a production that might have set a record on The Sports Guy's Unintentional Comedy Scale.

Paula Jones and Tonya Harding
Tonya Harding, right, finally gets close enough to the retreating Paula Jones to land a punch.
As for the three-fight card, Danny Bonaduce ("Danny Partridge") whipped Barry Williams ("Greg Brady") into submission with a second-round TKO, former child actor Todd Bridges won a unanimous decision from Rob Van Winkle (ex-rapper "Vanilla Ice"), and disgraced figure skater Tonya Harding pummeled scandal queen Paula Jones repeatedly before Jones quit in the third round.

We can't recap the comedic moments nearly that quickly, but here's Page 2's list of the 20 most embarrassing moments from Wednesday's event:

20. The promoters were only able to get one of The Backstreet Boys to sing the national anthem ... and it wasn't the dude with the weird goatee or either of the blond guys that we can't tell apart.

20a. That lone Backstreet Boy, Howie Dorough, brought along his sister so he'd have someone to duet with. ... and her name is Polyanna, which we're assuming isn't a stage name.

19. In his intro for the show, Fox's Chris Rose referred to Vanilla Ice as "a legend." We don't even have a joke here.

18. Believe or not, that wasn't Rose's biggest overstatement of the evening. In the next sentence, he referred to the show as "one of the most anticipated sporting events of 2002." Was it even more anticipated than Wednesday's spring training game between the Astros and the Marlins' split squad?

17. Three of the boxers (Bonaduce, Bridges and Harding) had ads for a gambling website temporarily tattooed on their backs. What do they think this is ... real boxing?

Paula Jones
Although the weigh-in was an event, Paula Jones wouldn't reveal her weight.
17a. Not coincidentally, those three all won their bouts. Hey, maybe it is real boxing!

16. As Ice ... er, Van Winkle ... paraded to the ring, he was followed by someone holding a cardboard sign that read "It's a Thrilla with Vanilla." Somewhere, even Don King was embarrassed.

15. Rose claimed that Bridges "has knowledge" about boxing because he met Muhammad Ali on the set of "Diff'rent Strokes" when he was 13. If that's the case, then where was Gary Coleman?

14. Harding entered the ring wearing shorts with a U.S. flag pattern ... thus ruining all of our fond memories of "Apollo Creed."

13. At least Harding knew how to get into the ring. When Jones' trainers split the ropes for her, she paused as if she had no idea what she was supposed to do. Fox analyst Ray Mancini later helped enhance Jones' boxing résumé by saying she had "gone toe-to-toe with the most powerful man in the world." (No, we're not making that up.)

12. Spotted in the crowd: A fan holding up the sign "Tayna is terrific" ... apparently spelling isn't the strong suit for the "Springer" crowd.

11. Harding and Jones exercised their "female prerogative" to not reveal their weight. All we can tell you is that Tonya looks a few pounds heavier than she did in Lillehammer, and Jones has dropped 2-3 pounds in the nose area.

10. Hey, the has-beens in the ring weren't the only ones trying to make a comeback ... yep, that was indeed "Alf" in a 10-10-220 commercial with Terry Bradshaw.

Danny Bonaduce, Barry Williams
It didn't take long for Danny Bonaduce, left, to plant Barry Williams on the canvas.
9. After a flurry of punches by Van Winkle, Rose compared the sequence to Ice's "gangsta rap" days. Uh, Chris, did you ever listen to Vanilla's music?

8. Actor Mario Lopez, a k a "A.C. Slater" from "Saved By the Bell," was one of the cornermen for Bonaduce ... and he didn't even get introduced on the broadcast.

8a. Speaking of "saved by the bell," Williams, Van Winkle and Jones all benefitted from the timely end of a round when they were on the canvas. Apparently, the producers knew they had a full hour to kill.

7. Every boxer has to have a nickname -- even Paula "The Pounder" Jones (we're holding back on a Clinton joke here). The others: Tonya "TNT" Harding, Todd "Mad Dog" Bridges, Rob "Bi-Polar" Van Winkle, Greg "Da Butcher" Williams and Danny "Boom Boom" Bonaduce.

6. Mancini claimed he had given Bonaduce permission to use "Boom Boom" as his nickname as long as he didn't lose. ... how much were they paying you again, Ray?

5. Williams was knocked to the canvas less than 10 seconds into his fight with Bonaduce and went down a half-dozen times in all. Maybe the promoters should have signed up Marcia Brady instead. At least she's proven that she can take a football to the face.

4. After taking a series of blows in the opening round, Jones tried to call a timeout ... somewhere, Chris Webber was smiling.

3. After chasing a backpedaling Jones for two rounds, Harding -- whom Rose referred to as the only "world-class athlete" on the card -- needed to take a puff off her inhaler in the corner. That moment was quickly topped by Harding's cornerman saying, "Throw straight punches and you'll knock this b...., this chick, out."

2. After her victory, Harding told ring announcer Michael Buffer "this wasn't a catfight." Then she pulled off her gloves to reveal her brightly painted red fingernails.

1. Page 2 wasted an hour of its time watching this fiasco, so we could produce this list.




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