Born March 4, 1961 in Youngstown, OH. The son of former prizefighter Lenny “Boom Boom” Mancini, Ray followed his father into boxing, determined to capture the world title that eluded his father, who was injured while serving in World War II.
He turned pro in 1979 and behind a relentless, all-action style began a meteoric rise to the top of the lightweight division. Mancini captured the NABF lightweight title in 1981 from Jorge Morales (TKO 9) and defended against Jose Luis Ramirez (W 12) before unsuccessfully challenging Hall of Famer Alexis Arguello (TKO by 14) in a spirited WBC world title go. On May 8, 1982, “Boom Boom” defeated Arturo Frias (TKO 1) to win the WBA lightweight strap and fulfill his father’s dream. A string of successful defenses over Ernesto Espana (TKO 6), Deuk-Koo Kim (KO 14), Orlando Romero (KO 9) and Hall of Famer Bobby Chacon (TKO 3) followed before losing the title to Livingstone Bramble (TKO by 14) in a memorable scrap on June 1, 1984. Unsuccessful in the rematch (L 15) the next year, Mancini retired in 1992 following a 1989 bout with Hector Camacho (L 12) for the WBO junior welterweight title and a 1992 contest with Greg Haugen (TKO by 7) for the NABF junior welterweight title.
Mancini was beloved by fans and network television audiences for his whirlwind, energetic style. With a pro record of 29-5 (23 KOs), the pride of Youngstown remains one of boxing’s most popular figures. Since his retirement Mancini has found success acting and producing motion pictures.
Born: March 4, 1961