By Christopher P. Cook / www.FLBOXING.com
As the year comes to an end, the Tampa Bay area has been blessed with a strong showing of boxing and excitement. The year began early as both local promoters, StarFight Productions and One Punch Productions, both showcased their top talents in numerous exciting and eventful shows. The Bay Area grew even more excited on March 13, when Winky Wright took a unanimous decision victory of “Sugar” Shane Mosley to capture the light middleweight crown. It would be only two months later that Tampa was able to celebrate another belt coming home, as Antonio Tarver shocked the world in his knockout victory of once-unbeatable Roy Jones Jr. Now home to both the light middleweight and light heavyweight crowns, Tampa is looking to become another Mecca for boxing. Boxing has grown much in this region and could be seen when powerhouse Warrior’s Promotions brought four title fights and an eliminator match to the Florida State Fairgrounds in Tampa. Headlined with WBO Light Middleweight champion Daniel Santos, the region was able to witness the biggest show since 2001 when Roy came to town. Finishing off the title gathering in Tampa Bay, Jeff “Left Hook” Lacy TKO’d Syd Vanderpool October 2, to claim his first belt, the IBF Super Middleweight title.
The last show for this year will be One Punch’s show on November 19 (see preview below). A perfect example of boxing staying alive in Tampa, StarFight Productions has released its 2005 schedule and will start the year off on January 21 with its first show. Other dates they have schedules are March 11, May 13, June 24, August 26, and October 7.
With all the action happening in Tampa, the region has many things be proud of and look towards a bright future. Lastly, I am proud to announce that retired professional boxer Tyrone Booze (Clearwater, FL) was released from the hospital this past week after a terrible work-related accident. On September 15, Tyrone was hit by a backing truck around 8 AM. The truck driver did not notice the hit until he heard Tyrone’s yell after the truck had run over his body. He was then transported to Bayfront Medical Center and had remained there the past six weeks recovering. No charges have been filed due to it being an accident. The Tampa-based sanctioning body, National Boxing Association, is going to be donating money to Tyrone to aid in the medical bills associated and will be happy to help collect any donations anyone may wish to send to aid one of our fellow retired boxers. Booze was a professional fighter for 16 years before he retired in 1998. He fought the likes of Evander Holyfield and Bert Cooper during his career, amassing a record of 22 wins, 12 losses and two draws. To contact the National Boxing Association, please visit www.NBABoxing.com.