Ten for 2011: One Man's Ballot for IBHOF Induction
By Lyle Fitzsimmons,
Contributing Boxing Editor
Ocala, FL (Sports Network) -
So, the third time's a charm?
Perhaps...but I wouldn't count on it.
In fact, when it comes to this time of year in my incarnation as a boxing writer, I pretty much expect the next couple of days to be filled with myriad message-board potshots and the random "you're an idiot" lambasting via e-mail inbox drive-by.
Comes with the territory, I suppose.
And it sure beats working for a living.
The mid-autumn topic matter that so stirs up the masses is the annual ballot of fighters submitted for induction into the International Boxing Hall of Fame, tucked away in the timeless upstate hamlet of Canastota, N.Y.
I took my first crack at ballot-preparation two years ago and was an immediate rookie phenom, correctly endorsing the candidacy of all three modern-era Class of 2009 inductees -- Orlando Canizales, Lennox Lewis and Brian Mitchell.
The sophomore batting average plummeted from 1.000 to .500, however, when just one of the trio's eventual 2010 classmates -- South Korean 108-pounder Jung- Koo Chang -- was checked off as a "yes" vote on the ballot I submitted last October.
The majority of the voting population liked Danny "Little Red" Lopez just as much.
As for me...not so much.
Julio Cesar Chavez held titles at 130, 135 and 140 pounds between 1984-96.
That said, with this year's laundry list, I'm figuring sheer quantity will yield more quality.
No fewer than 45 boxers active for at least one fight since 1943 are again on the ballot for 2011 recognition, with voting done through Nov. 1 by BWAA members and select non-members chosen by the Hall's board of directors.
Each "modern" voter chooses from one to 10 boxers, with the top three vote- getters punching a ticket. The IBHOF board chooses hall-worthy observers, non- participants, pioneers and old-timers.
I'm going for capacity this time around, pulling a virtual lever for exactly 10.
Other inductees last year included manager Shelly Finkel, referee/commissioner Larry Hazzard, promoter Wilfried Sauerland, matchmaker Bruce Trampler and journalist Ed Schuyler.
The official induction ceremony is set for June 12, 2011.
Here's one writer's look at the men who ought to be booking flights:
Georgie Abrams -- Floored champion Tony Zale in failed 1941 middleweight title bid; lost decisions to Ray Robinson, Marcel Cerdan and Fred Apostoli. Vote: NO.
Horacio Accavallo -- Seventy-five wins in 83 career fights; held WBA flyweight title in 1966-67. Vote: NO.
Joey Archer -- Defeated Ray Robinson in Robinson's final fight; two failed bids against middleweight champion Emile Griffith in 1966-67. Vote: NO.
Jose Becerra -- Seventy-two wins in 79 career fights; held world bantamweight title in 1959-60. Vote: NO.
Johnny Bratton -- Held NBA welterweight title in 1951; went 0-2-1 in three bouts with Kid Gavilan. Vote: NO.
Jimmy Carruthers -- Held world bantamweight title from 1952-54; went 2-4 over six-fight comeback in 1961-62. Vote: NO.
Julio Cesar Chavez -- Held titles at 130 (WBC), 135 (WBA/WBC) and 140 pounds (WBC/IBF) between 1984-96; Won first 87 bouts through 1994. Vote: YES.
Donald Curry -- Held WBA, IBF and WBC welterweight titles between 1983-86; subsequently won WBC title at 154 pounds. Vote: NO.
Hiroyuki Ebihara -- Held WBA/WBC flyweight titles in 1963-64; later held WBA championship in 1969. Vote: NO.
Tommy Farr -- Won 81 of 126 career bouts; dropped 15-round decision to heavyweight champion Joe Louis in 1937. Vote: NO.
Tiger Jack Fox -- Won 153 of 191 career bouts; fought professionally from 1928-50. Vote: NO.
Ceferino Garcia -- Won 102 of 142 career bouts; held NYSAC world middleweight title in 1939-40. Vote: NO.
Betulio Gonzalez -- Won 75 of 91 career bouts; three flyweight title reigns between 1972-79. Vote: NO.
Yoko Gushiken -- Won WBA junior flyweight title in ninth career bout; made 13 successful title defenses. Vote: NO.
Naseem Hamed -- Held WBO, IBF and WBC flyweight titles between 1995-2001; went 17-1 with 14 knockouts in 18 career championship bouts. Vote: YES.
Carlos Hernandez -- Held WBA/WBC junior welterweight titles in 1965-66; lost subsequent WBA title bout in 1969. Vote: NO.
Rafael Herrera -- Won WBA/WBC bantamweight titles from Ruben Olivares in 1972; subsequently held WBC championship in 1973-74. Vote: NO.
Al Hostak -- Two reigns as WBA world middleweight champion; stopped twice in title bouts by Tony Zale. Vote: NO.
Harry Jeffra -- Won 94 of 122 career bouts; held world titles at bantamweight and featherweight. Vote: NO.
Peter Kane -- Held world flyweight title in 1938-39; won 88 of 99 career bouts. Vote: NO.
Cocoa Kid -- Won 176 of 244 career bouts; held "colored" welterweight and middleweight world championships. Vote: NO.
Pone Kingpetch -- Three flyweight championship reigns; won six of nine career title bouts. Vote: NO.
Santos Laciar -- Two title reigns at 112 pounds, one at 115; won 12 of 16 career title bouts. Vote: YES.
Tippy Larkin -- Won 136 of 153 career bouts; won world junior welterweight title in 1946. Vote: NO.
Jose Legra -- Two reigns as WBC featherweight champion; won 134 of 150 career bouts. Vote: NO.
Miguel (Happy) Lora -- Held WBC bantamweight title from 1985-88; lost WBO championship tries in 1991 and 1993. Vote: NO.
Raul (Raton) Macias -- World bantamweight champion between 1955-57; won one- fight comeback in 1962. Vote: NO.
Ernesto Marcel -- Retired as WBA featherweight champion in 1974; defeated Alexis Arguello in final title defense. Vote: NO.
Freddie Mills -- Won 76 of 101 career bouts; captured world light heavyweight title in 1948. Vote: NO.
Rinty Monaghan -- Won all four career title bouts; retired as world flyweight champion in 1950. Vote: NO.
Masao Ohba -- Won final 19 bouts; held WBA flyweight title from 1970-73. Vote: NO.
Sven Ottke -- Retired as IBF super middleweight champion in 2004; Won all 22 career title fights. Vote: YES.
Ken Overlin -- Won 135 of 165 career bouts; held world middleweight title in 1940-41. Vote: NO.
Gustave Roth -- Won 113 of 137 career bouts; held European welterweight, middleweight and light heavyweight titles. Vote: NO.
Lou Salica -- Held world bantamweight titles in 1935 and again between 1939-42; lost to fellow nominee Harry Jeffra in final bout. Vote: NO.
Dave Sands -- Won 97 of 110 career bouts; held Australian middleweight, light heavyweight and heavyweight titles. Vote: NO.
Petey Scalzo -- Won 90 of 112 career bouts; held world featherweight title in 1940-41. Vote: NO.
Samuel Serrano -- Two reigns as WBA super featherweight champion; went 15-2-1 in 18 career title bouts. Vote: YES.
Yoshio Shirai -- Held world flyweight title between 1952-54; lost two subsequent title tries against Pascual Perez. Vote: NO.
Kostya Tszyu -- Two title reigns at 140 pounds between 1995-2005; Won 14 of 16 career title bouts. Vote: YES.
Kid Tunero -- Won 97 of 148 career bouts; went 1-6-2 in final nine bouts before retirement at age 38. Vote: NO.
Mike Tyson -- Won WBC heavyweight title at age 20 in 1986; Went 12-4 in 16 title bouts through 2002. Vote: YES.
Wilfredo Vazquez -- Held WBA titles at 118, 122 and 126 pounds; went 16-3-2 in 21 career title bouts. Vote: YES.
Myung-Woo Yuh -- Two reigns as WBA light flyweight champion; won 20 of 21 career title bouts. Vote: YES.
Hilario Zapata -- Two reigns as WBC light flyweight champion and one as WBA flyweight champion; went 18-5-2 in title bouts. Vote: YES.
Vote early and vote often.
And let's try to remember, folks...it's just boxing.
* * * * *
This week's title-fight schedule:
SUNDAY WBC super bantamweight title -- Tokyo, Japan Toshiaki Nishioka (champion) vs. Rendall Munroe (No. 1 contender) Nishioka (36-4-3, 23 KO): Fifth title defense; Winless in first four title fights (0-2-2, 0 KO) Munroe (21-1, 9 KO): First title fight; Unbeaten since 2006 (11-0, 5 KO) Fitzbitz says: "Light-hitting Brit taking too big a step with streaking incumbent." Nishioka by decision
Last week's picks: 4-0
Overall picks record: 239-81 (74.6 percent)
Lyle Fitzsimmons is a veteran sports columnist who's written professionally since 1988 and covered boxing since 1995. His work is published in print and posted online for clients in North America and Europe. Reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org or follow him at www.twitter.com/fitzbitz.