21st ANNUAL HALL OF FAME INDUCTION CELEBRATION IN
BOXING'S HOMETOWN - CANASTOTA, NEW YORK
CANASTOTA, NY - JUNE 13, 2010 - Thousands of boxing fans from around the world congregated at the Hall of Fame's Events Pavilion to see the Class of 2010 join boxing immortals when they were enshrined into the Hall of Fame during the Official Induction Ceremony on Sunday, June 13th.
The ceremony capped four days of activities in “Boxing’s Hometown” celebrating the new class of inductees. The weekend featured many exciting events including a golf tournament, cocktail party, banquet and boxing autograph card show. Also, there were a variety of activities on the Museum Grounds including the popular "ringside lecture" question and answer sessions, book signings, silent auction and celebrity workout sessions.
This year's living inductees were junior flyweight champion Jung-Koo Chang, featherweight champion Danny “Little Red” Lopez, manager Shelly Finkel, referee / commissioner Larry Hazzard, promoter Wilfried Sauerland, matchmaker Bruce Trampler and journalist Ed Schuyler. Living honorees received the official Hall of Fame Induction Certificate and gold Hall of Fame ring symbolizing their status as Hall of Famers.
Only the second German inducted, promoter Wilfried Sauerland proudly accepted his Hall of Fame ring. “In the name of German boxing, I am honored to be the second after Max Schmeling to be a member of the Hall of Fame. Thank you.”
Bruce Trampler, who has been matchmaker for Top Rank since 1981, was next. “When I got out of college, my mother warned me, ‘please don’t go work for the Dundees (Angelo & Chris), you’re going to meet fast woman and gangsters.’ Eventually I did, but not through the Dundees!”
Manager Shelly Finkel remembered those who helped him in boxing. “I want to thank some people who are not with us today, but were instrumental in my growth in the sport – Ray Arcel, Jim Jacobs, Dan Duva and Joey Fariello, who told me, ‘In life, as in boxing, the most important thing is character. At some point in life, you’re going to be tested. Always go with the person who has character. He’ll come out on top.’”
Referee and long-time New Jersey State Athletic Control Board commissioner Larry Hazzard next delivered a heartfelt speech. “We are all in the race against time. Tomorrow is not promised to any of us. There are so many people in the boxing world who are worthy of this recognition and for me to be standing here today, in front of many of them, is only by the grace of God."
“Boxing was and always has been a writing sport. If you can’t write about boxing, you should be selling shoes!” said veteran Associated Press boxing writer Ed Schuyler upon accepting his gold Hall of Fame ring.
The first Korean inducted into the Hall of Fame, Jung-Koo Chang, traveled 20 hours from Seoul, South Korea to collect Hall of Fame honors. “I want to thank you for your heart warming welcome. From now on, Canastota is my hometown. I’ll come back every year."
Featherweight king Danny “Little Red” Lopez was next to take his place among boxing immortals. “Getting inducted is a big honor, getting the ring and the whole shot.”
Lopez was amazed to see so many copies of his 1979 Sports Illustrated cover throughout the weekend. He joked, “I think I’m outdoing the swimsuit edition.”
Posthumous inductees of the Class of 2010 honored were Lloyd Marshall in the modern category; Young Corbett II, Rocky Kansas and Billy Miske in the old-timer category; Paddington Tom Jones in the pioneer category; and broadcaster Howard Cosell in the observer category.
Kansas’ grandson Kenneth Tozzo accepted Hall of Fame honors for his grandfather.
Miske’s grandsons Bill and Dick Miske, were also on hand. “It is a great honor for the Miske family,” said Bill. “We’ve been waiting for this for a number of years and it finally came to fruition. We’re thrilled.”
Cosell’s grandson Colin accepted his grandfather’s award. “The boxing world was very good to us. With his trademark modesty, I’m sure Howard would say he was very good to the world of boxing as well…tongue in cheek, of course. We’re humbled and thankful to know that the work that he loved doing continues to be recognized and thanks to the International Boxing Hall of Fame his legacy lives on.”
Among the boxing stars on hand for the weekend were Hall of Fame Alumni: Carmen Basilio, Carlos Ortiz, Emile Griffith, Ruben Olivares, Aaron “The Hawk” Pryor, Ken Norton, Gene Fullmer, Nino Benvenuti, Don Chargin, J Russell Peltz, Bert Sugar, Angelo Dundee, Emanuel Steward, Lou Duva, Daniel Zaragoza and Bob Arum.
Other boxing celebrities in attendance included Livingstone Bramble, Marlon Starling, Leon Spinks, Micky Ward, Vito Antuofermo, Ron Lyle, Earnie Shavers, Tony DeMarco, Billy Backus, Dickie DiVeronica, George Chuvalo, Gerry Cooney, Buddy McGirt, Buster Douglas, Al Bernstein, Tommy “The Duke” Morrison, Joe Cortez, Kenny Bayless, Riddick “Big Daddy” Bowe, James “Bonecrusher” Smith, Jay and Don Fullmer, Troy Ross and Arthur “Golden” Johnson.
Also during Weekend activities, the Hall celebrated many of todays’ top stars including Mexico’s Rafael Marquez, fresh off his May 22nd win over Israel Vazquez, newly crowned IBF cruiserweight champion Steve “USS” Cunningham, WBO cruiserweight champion Marco “Captain” Huck, IBF super middleweight champion Lucian Bute and WBC middleweight champion Sergio “Maravilla” Martinez.
As 2010 marks the Village of Canastota’s bicentennial, the Hall was proud to have hometown heroes Basilio and Backus share grand marshal duties for the Parade of Champions.
MSG Night – The Hall of Fame celebrated the proud boxing legacy at Madison Square Garden with a special “MSG Night.” The evening featured video highlights and speeches from such luminaries as Al Bernstein, George Chuvalo, Gerry Cooney, Carlos Ortiz, Buddy McGirt, Vito Antuofermo, Angelo Dundee, Lou Duva, Emile Griffith and Nino Benvenuti. Larry Torres, MSG director of public relations, and Dan Schoenberg, MSG VP of public relations, were on hand and graciously provided Mecca of Boxing DVDs to fans in attendance.
Martinez Training Headquarters – WBC middleweight champion Sergio “Maravilla” Martinez held daily workout sessions on the Hall of Fame grounds. Along with trainer Gabriel Sarmiento, Martinez, shadow boxed, jumped rope and did mitt work.
Also, undefeated up-and-coming middleweight Willie Monroe, Jr. of Ithaca, NY prepped for his upcoming July 28th bout with an entertaining workout on the Museum Grounds.
Anniversary Celebrations – During the weekend many boxers were celebrating anniversaries. Among them were: Carmen Basilio and Tony DeMarco’s 55th Anniversary of 1955’s “Fight of the Year;” Billy Backus’ 40th anniversary of his welterweight title win over Jose Napoles; Aaron “The Hawk” Pryor’s 30th anniversary of his junior welterweight win over Antonio Cervantes and James “Buster” Douglas’ 20th Anniversary of his heavyweight title upset over Mike Tyson.
Artifact Donations – Many celebrity boxers donated historic memorabilia to the Hall while in Canastota. New Hall of Famer Danny “Little Red” Lopez donated the famous headdress he wore throughout his career. Sergio Martinez donated the boxing trunks he wore in his classic battle with Paul Williams (Martinez embroidered Vernon Forrest’s name on the trunks as a tribute to the late champion). Rafael Marquez donated the trunks he wore in his IBF bantamweight title win over Tim Austin. Wilfried Sauerland presented Hall director Ed Brophy with a giant gold glove autographed by many of Team Sauerland’s champions and an Arthur Abraham fight worn boxing robe.
ALSO IN ATTENDANCE for the 21st Hall of Fame Weekend festivities were Top Rank president Todd DuBoef, Top Rank VP of Boxing Operations Carl Moretti, Top Rank publicist Lee Samuels, NYSAC chairperson Melvina Lathan, international matchmaker Sampson Lewkowicz, trainer Stephan Larouche, Nisse and Kalle Sauerland, Four Kings author George Kimball, Cy Young Award winner Dean Chance and NBA Hall of Famer Dolph Schayes.