Irish Thunder: The Hard Life and Times of Micky Ward

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The true story of a boxer’s unlikely road to becoming a world champion

 

"Irish” Micky Ward was always the underdog—one able to stage a stunning comeback late in a fight. After a fifteen-year pro career followed by a string of defeats and three years of retirement, the Lowell, Massachusetts, native defeated Arturo Gatti in 2002, capturing the world light welterweight title. The grueling battle—named "Fight of ...

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Irish Thunder: The Hard Life and Times of Micky Ward

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Overview

Now in paperback!

 

The true story of a boxer’s unlikely road to becoming a world champion

 

"Irish” Micky Ward was always the underdog—one able to stage a stunning comeback late in a fight. After a fifteen-year pro career followed by a string of defeats and three years of retirement, the Lowell, Massachusetts, native defeated Arturo Gatti in 2002, capturing the world light welterweight title. The grueling battle—named "Fight of the Year” by Ring magazine and "Fight of the Century” by boxing fans around America—was broadcast live on HBO, made Ward famous, and launched two legendary rematches.

 

In Irish Thunder, Bob Halloran recounts Ward’s rise to hero status, his rivalry with his imprisoned brother, and the negotiations, betrayals, and drugs that shaped a wild youth who ultimately became a nationally respected boxer. This is a story about a boxer from a boxing family and a boxing town—and it is a wrenching account of life in blue-collar America. Ward’s dramatic victories inside the ring are recounted in gripping detail, but it is his victory outside the ring that inspires.

 

***

 

Author Bob Halloran is a consultant on a major motion picture due in 2010, The Fighter, that tells the Micky Ward story and stars Mark Wahlberg and Christian Bale.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
“The themes in Micky’s . . . story of family, betrayal, brotherly love, tragedy, triumph, being an underdog, perseverance, and redemption, set against a boxing backdrop, resonate with nonboxing fans. Think ‘Rocky’ for the new millennium.” —Boston Globe “Bob Halloran does a remarkable job in describing the actual key bouts of Lowell’s champion boxer. You can almost feel the punches and intensity of the brutal sport."—The Sun (Lowell, MA) “[T]errific. . . . compellingly powerful. . . . Ward was a fighter who was hard to keep down. Irish Thunder is a book that is hard to put down."—thesweetscience.com
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781441776631
  • Publisher: Blackstone Audio, Inc.
  • Publication date: 11/1/2010
  • Format: CD
  • Pages: 8
  • Product dimensions: 6.50 (w) x 6.20 (h) x 1.20 (d)

Meet the Author

Bob Halloran is the weekend news and sports anchor at WCVB-TV in Boston, Massachusetts. He is also a former ESPN anchor and columnist for espn.com. Halloran has worked as a news and sports anchor in New England for over twenty years, and he writes a weekly column for the Boston Metro newspaper. He is also the author of Breakdown: A Season of Gang Warfare, High School Football, and the Coach Who Policed the Streets (Lyons Press, forthcoming). 

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Read an Excerpt


A dozen bellies cozied up to the bar. Shooters all around. Shots and beers for a small group of men, some of whom had just gotten off work, others who were on their way to work, and the rest who had no work at all. It was nine o’clock in the morning, and for those with nowhere else to go, drinking seemed like a good idea, and for those in no hurry to get where they were supposed to be, drinking also seemed like a good idea. It had been this way at the Highland Tap for the better part of three decades, and if it stayed that way for three more, that would suit these men just fine.
The Tap was their comfort zone. It was dark and it was quiet. The faces were as familiar as the conversations. It was a no frills bar, uncluttered with only the essentials, a handful of tables and enough wooden stools to surround a small, oval bar. The walls were adorned with pictures of fighters, boxers, local guys whose photos served to fill these patrons with a sense of parochial pride. If you grew up in Lowell, you were tough, because Lowell made you that way. There were times in Lowell’s history when it was a good place to raise a family. The rest of the time, it was a good place to raise a little hell. Most of the men who ventured into the Highland Tap had done both.

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Recipe



“Irish” Micky Ward grew up in the 1970s and 80s as a tough kid from Lowell, Massachusetts—a town where boxers were once bred as a means of survival. A hard worker who overcame bad luck, bad management, and chronic pain in his hands, he avoided the pitfall of poverty and dead-end work that plagued Lowell to become a Golden Gloves junior welterweight.

 

Ward participated in street fights from an early age and was forever known by his opponents and spectators as the underdog. But with his incredible ability to suddenly drop an opponent late in a fight with his trademark left hook, he kept proving everyone wrong.

 

After fifteen years of boxing, a string of defeats, and three years of retirement, Micky battled Arturo Gatti in 2002 in the battle that was later named “Fight of the Year” by Ring magazine and dubbed “Fight of the Century” by boxing writers across the country. Ten rounds of brutal action ended with Micky winning by decision, and reviving enthusiasm for a sport that had been weighted down by years of showboating and corruption. ESPN and Boston television reporter Bob Halloran recounts Micky’s rise to hero status, his rivalry with his imprisoned brother, and the negotiations, betrayals, and drugs that ultimately shaped a wild youth into a nationally respected boxer.
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Sort by: Showing all of 15 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted August 13, 2009

    Great book!! And I am not a boxing Fan, Halloran leaves nothing out.

    First of all I just started reading this because I was an Unpaid extra in the movie The Fighter. I Just wanted to know more about Micky Ward, Well I was very happy to find this book. You will find yourself cringing and cheering for this amazing man.
    Its a great read even for a woman not into boxing, Now i think I am ready to see one of the fights on DVD.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 29, 2008

    a true champion

    a true story of a young man who never gave up!!a great read.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted March 25, 2011

    Excellent read

    I am not a boxing fan but grew up in Lowell. You just want to know what happens next it is a supurb read

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
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