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Sting Like a Bee

  • Najib Benouar

We’ve already declared it boots season here on Kempt.

And here’s a late-breaking addition: these boxer boots from Tod’s capsule collection No_Code (inspired by legendary editor Jefferson Hack). They’ve taken the classic shape of boxing boots but cut them in the same buttery-soft leather their driving shoes have become famous for—resulting in the most comfortable-looking boots we’ve seen this side of a sneaker hybrid. Plus the zipper down the back means you won’t even have to spend time lacing them—or fiddling with a shoehorn.

Kate Upton’s Zipper Is Stuck

  • Kempt Staff

Well-Cut and Dry: Cool Hunting takes the new Dri-Fit enhanced oxford from Nike for spin and they’re pleasantly surprised with the looks and the moisture wicking. [Cool Hunting]

Light Knight: Vulture hypothesizes that the moments of comedic relief in director Chris Nolan’s gritty movies could be better. Cue the laugh track. [Vulture]

Punch Out: This year the US will field our first women’s boxing team. Which is a major feat in and of itself. [Deadspin]

Un-Required Reading: A good read on the beach is a time honored summer tradition—but you should choose your material wisely. [LA Times]

The Very Best Nicknames in Sports

Lawrence Berra was nicknamed “Yogi” by Bobby Hofman, who thought Berra resembled a Hindu yogi—solemnly seated with arms and legs crossed—after losing a game.

When Kansas City Athletics owner Charlie Finley saw Jim Hunter pitch for the first time in 1965, he knew he’d signed a legend. The only problem, according to Finley, was the name—“Jim Hunter” didn’t sell tickets. The next morning, Finley called Hunter into his office and informed him that his name was now “Catfish.” Jim was understandably confused, and while the conversation was not recorded, we’re almost positive his response was, “Um... why’s that?”

That’s because baseball players, like all professional athletes, are first and foremost entertainers—and entertainers aren’t named “Jim.” Unfortunately, guys like Charlie Finley are a bit of a dying breed. The perfect nickname used to be steeped in lore, metaphorically connected to athletic prowess, an inside-out joke that made children of all ages—particularly the nickname-ee—grin. Now, it seems, the “-Rod” generation simply resorts to hyphenated pig latin of sorts.

As Hunter left the office, he asked his new owner what he should say if and when people asked about the origin of his new nickname. Finley replied, “You came back from the river on your 10th birthday having caught six catfish and handed them to your old man. Sell it. Goodbye.” On that note, we now present the very best nicknames in sports...

And the nominees are...»

The Memorial MOTH: Bert Sugar

Raise a glass, men. One of the most iconic gentlemen of our time passed away last night, the boxing writer Bert Sugar. He was the platonic ideal of a sportswriter—rarely seen without an unflipped fedora, a cigar and some of the loudest ties ever seen in a newspaper. He was larger than life from the beginning, looking and dressing as if he’d just walked out of His Girl Friday. And given that he covered both Sugar Rays and all three Ali-Frazier bouts, the nostalgia was well earned. He’ll be missed.

A few more Bert Sugar pics, for the road»

The Welterweight Tie

We don’t usually choose our ties based on boxing matches…but there’s a first time for everything.

WBO Welterweight World Champion Manny Pacquaio is coming up for his third bout against Juan Manuel Marquez this Saturday, and in certain circles, it’s a very big deal. Enough of a big deal that Italophile tie-maker Vittorio J is commemorating the occasion with a limited-edition necktie. The pattern's modeled after the flag of the Phillipines, where Pacquaio was born, but it’s safe to say the only people who’ll get the reference will already be fans.

That makes it one of the more dignified ways to show your allegiance to a fighter—at least compared to screaming from the front row. Let’s just hope the trend slows down before Ochocinco gets involved.

Sylva Koscina Does Not Share Melon

Sylva Koscinavia WBE

Behind the Window: The latest behind-the-scenes style blog comes out swinging with an insider analysis of Paul Stuart’s latest bloggy moves. [The Coe Journal]

Mickey Returns: Mickey Rourke gives a touching tribute to Brad Renfro, without going so far as to remember Brad Renfro’s name. [GQ]

O Snap: The world’s most expensive photograph sold for $4.3 million at Christie’s last night. Strangely, there is no nudity. [The Atlantic Wire]

The Boxer: George Foreman opens up about our most recent Icon, Joe Frazier. [Deadspin]

The Hard Knocks of Joe Frazier

Life is hard for the underdog.

Imagine, for example, a world-class boxer who spends his whole career—his whole life, even—in the shadow of one of the most flamboyantly gifted individuals in the history of organized sport.

But now that the dust has settled on the taunts and the hype and the politics, we’re ready to join the chorus saying it: Joe Frazier was a fascinating guy.

The iconic Mr. Frazier...»