Paul Brown is a former funeral home director, so he knows a little about dead bodies. Tonya Harding's manager-trainer says he didn't want himself or his client to end up in a body bag, thus the withdrawal from the Portland pugilist's recent scheduled fight in Oakland, Calif.
Brown, who has been involved with the boxing business for 36 years, says he has never been in a situation like the one at the weigh-in for the scheduled fight with Tracy Carlton. Carlton's racist-laden trash talk at the weigh-in, along with death threats from Carlton's trainer, convinced Brown that they should pull out of the bout, he says.
"I have never seen personal threats like this at a weigh-in," says Brown, who is black. "It -wasn't just the normal intimidation factor. The commissioner even jumped up and told (Carlton) to knock it off. There were a lot of people milling around, black people we didn't know, and it was a menacing situation. Tonya wanted to leave then, she was so frightened, but it was me who made the decision."