Since Jess Willard defeated Jack Johnson in 1915 through to Floyd “Money” Mayweather’s retirement in 2015, black fighters have continued to face challenges and obstacles to financial security. The same forces that push black men into the ring--poverty and a quest to assert their manhood in a society that tries to deny black masculinity--remain. But he also wants to be recognized for his manhood beyond the ring. To this end, he tries to take care of his family financially, and he invests his money in businesses or property. But when the fighter receives his earnings, he also buys the things he always wanted, the items that make him stand out in sporting society and give him an air of financial autonomy: cars, clothes, and jewelry.
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