Posted by Don Smith on Sep 11, 2014
Boxing Memorabilia, Domestic Violence & More

Boxing Memorabilia, Domestic Violence & More

Arizona Boxing News & Notes with Don Smith
Boxing Memorabilia, Domestic Violence & More

Boxing Fans,

Colorful Sports Collector and Hall of Fame Collectible store owner Mike Weber called me the other day and asked if I would be interested in looking at some of his boxing items posted on EBay. I told him I didn’t know Montego Bay from EBay; he laughed. Donnie, he said, it’s easy and I stopped him right there in his verbal tracks. The less I use a computer, the better I feel about myself and the world in general.

Truth of the matter is I don’t know how to get on EBay and I have no interest to learn. My column doesn’t sell or seek advertisements, but I am aware boxing treasures are hard to come by and it sounds like “Uncle” Mike is holding goods well suited for my boxing crazy readers to look at and perhaps own; collectibles can be a good investment.

I did think it would be in the form of a public service message to inform my readers that the Mesa businessman was selling, at a very reasonable price, some rare signed 8×10 boxing photos, and sets of boxing cards and other items of interest to serious boxing aficionados. Sorry, I couldn’t get a comprehensive list of available items list but he did mention Joe Louis, John L. Sullivan, Rocky Graziano and Tony Zale to mention a few of the early historical boxing figures to grace the sport of boxing.

If interested, Mr. Weber has a store located in Mesa, Arizona at 2665 E. Broadway Road. Hall of Fame Collectibles has an active and updated website or boxing fans can call the affable proprietor at 480-644-9518 for more details.

Copper Gloves: Boxing fans, the annual Copper Gloves Tournament (October 15-16) falls son Wednesday & Thursday, circle your calendar. Boxing starts at 7 PM each night. The Copper Gloves Tournament presents various quality fighters from across the state of Arizona representing the best of Arizona Boxing Clubs. In recent years, the event has cut back on the number of fights, but smart consumers can take advantage of “We Care” Wednesday on October 15 before 6 PM and make a small donation (check Arizona State Fair website) and enter free and watch boxing and Darius Rucker in concert for free. The following night (tournament final) Weezer take the concert stage The fair is a good entertainment value if fans adhere to the discount special which also apply to rides and food. The Arizona State Fair far is open Wednesday through Sunday and opens officially on Friday October 10 and concludes on Sunday November 2.

The Arizona Golden Gloves was directed by Al Fenn since 1972 until his death in 2009. Mr. Fenn was a decorated World War II hero and boxing fans can read about his legacy and exploits by going online to the Phoenix boys and Girls Center website. Kelly Fenn, Mr. Fenn’s daughter, is the current CEO of the Copper and Golden Gloves. Kelly also manages the Phoenix Boys & Girls center which one of the few gyms in America that doesn’t charge a membership fee, part of the extraordinary legacy of Al Fenn. See you at the Copper Gloves.

Phoenix Fight Night: Here is the latest skinny on where to get tickets for the upcoming September 26 Phoenix Fight Night boxing show presented by Ben Miranda Boxing Promotions at the Phoenix Convention Center. Tickets can be purchased online at or by dropping by the promotion company office at 3614 N. 15th Avenue in Phoenix. GA ducats are $28.00 and floor seating (available at 15th Avenue) is priced at $40.00. Also some of the fighters are selling tickets, so if fans know some of the boxers; buy from their stash. Ringside and table seating is available, but I don’t have a clue as to the cost. Doors open at 6 PM and first bell chimes at 7 PM. The headline event features Rollin Williams vs. Andrew “Hurricane” Hernandez in a super middleweight contest. Since his ring comeback two fights ago, Rollin senses a lack of respect. He says he felt victorious in his last two contests, but the judges scored him trailing in both bouts. Against Hernandez, he promises a surprise. At 48; how many surprises does he have left? Rollin is a truly nice guy.

Donald Update: After my mention of boxer Terrell Donald training with five time world champion Michael Carbajal; two local boxing mentors called me to offer their opinion that the 21 year old from Chicago wasn’t dedicated enough to ever wear a boxing crown. I passed the criticism to him and it didn’t sit well. The two nameless critics went on say that Terrell was muscle bound and too big to fight at 123 lbs. Terrell admits to currently weighing 133 lbs., but scoffs at the notion he can’t scale down and win big at 123 lbs.

The native Chicagoan trains six days a week works at AMC Theatres in Phoenix and is a helping member of a large family consisting of 7 siblings and a mother and father. His boxing goal is double edged. On one hand he wants to fight two more amateur fights before turning professional or he wants to stay mean and lean and gun for the 2016 Olympics.

At 21 he has time to think about his future and he wants to remain single because of the time needed to train and prepare for boxing. Relationships are time consuming and the starving athlete syndrome doesn’t bode well in dating situations. So, for now, marriage and children will have to wait.

Terrell arrived in Phoenix when he was 12 and took up boxing at age 16 and fought 13 times as an amateur winning most of them, but was unclear about his record. He also stated that he could meet and defeat highly regarded Francisco C. De Vaca in the near future. He did specify a time and place, but he didn’t stutter. Donald said the two young fighters almost met as amateurs, but Francisco (aka Panchito) got cold meet. Confidence is one thing fighters must have and Terrell seems to have a full supply.

His plan is to enter and win the Copper Gloves Tournament in October (15-16) at the Arizona State Fair. If he doesn’t, fight fans might find it hard to believe the rest of his story.

Boxing News: Phoenix fighters David Benavidez, Julio Sarinana and Emmanuel Nieves are penciled in for the Iron Boy XVI show in El Paso Texas on October 11. David is scheduled to fight in Mexicali , Mexico on September 27, so he plans to make it a quick night in Mexico….stellar boxing brother Jose Benavidez Jr. fights somewhere on the 29th of September against an unannounced opponent. BoxRec doesn’t give a clue.

The El Paso show has been beset with various problems and the state of Texas and its’ attitude towards “outsiders” is part of the problem. I lived in Texas for more than a dozen years and the welcome mat to outsiders is coarse until you understand the Texas way of doing business. It takes a while.

Years ago a young pretty lass corrected me when I asked her if Texas was a state. I was messing with her and she responded with this bold one liner: “No honey, Texas isn’t a state, it’s a Country.” Remember, Texas is a state that changed its’ history books to conform to their way of thinking and natives are proud to boast: “Don’t Mess with Texas.” Good luck to match maker Mike Sanchez in securing the show. It would be a major coup for Iron Boy to produce a successful show outside of Arizona. Hopefully, Texas is the place. …Heavyweight Andy Ruiz (22-0- 16 knockouts) has agreed to meet former heavyweight Champion Siarhei Liakhovich in the main event on the 9/20 Iron Boy XV card at the Celebrity Theater in Phoenix. I’m looking forward to seeing Ruiz for the first time.

Farewell Kyle: Approximately 250 people (friends and family members) gathered at the American Legion Post 108 off Houghton Road in Vail, Arizona (South East of Tucson) to bid a loving farewell to Kyle Edward Smith who passed away in a halfway house on August 26 from an apparent drug overdose. He was 27 and he leaves behind loving parents (Donna & Eddie), 2 brothers (Chris & Jimmy), doting Grandparents, cousins, uncles, aunts and nieces. If I left anyone out I am truly sorry, relatively speaking. Kyle was and my nephew. My brother Virgil helped raise Kyle and like all of his true friends and relatives was stunned to hear the news. Needless to say, my brother spoke with a heavy heart breaking down on several occasions.

I mention Kyle’s death in my column because his passing wasn’t noted in the obituary section of his local newspaper (Tucson Daily Star) because his parents feared that his drug using friends would show up “Dirty” and make a mockery of his memorial service which was held on Saturday August 6 inside the American Legion dining hall. They didn’t!

A scrumptious pot luck food offering was served after the memorial service which featured speeches, slide presentation and an outpouring of emotion that produces tears and numerous heartfelt hugs. It was a memorable and joyous memorial.

Special thanks to Squadron Commander Matthew Griffis for the use of the facility and the participation of his Post 109 members and community volunteers. Solid job, Commander and your welcome introduction was very touching.

Every life has a meaning and every death has a cause. It is my sincere wish that law enforcement and society, in general, get a grip on drug addiction. America is losing too many people to an affliction that we either ignore or lock up people and hope they cure themselves; that strategy isn’t working. Farewell Kyle and this is your official obituary, sorry it had to be written so soon and sorry I wasn’t there to save you. LOL!,

Uncle Don!
Golf Tournament: Television Sportscaster Felipe Corral, one of the few men I would trust alone with my vivacious girlfriend, needs our help with his 4th Annual “Drive for the Future” Scholarship Golf Tournament. The event will be held at the Legacy Golf Course, 6808 S. 32nd Street in Phoenix, Arizona. Donors can help by playing, becoming a sponsor or donating money or surrender a nice item to the silent auction. Register at: or call Felipe direct at 602-232-3562. Good humanitarian cause!

Domestic Violence: In light of the recently exposed episodes of domestic violence exhibited by players in the National Football League, I would like to challenge Boxing to start addressing the issue. There are good guys in the sport like Sergio Rodriguez, Ray Beltran and Jose Benavidez Jr. who champion the issue but the rate of domestic violence incidents in the sport are astronomical and we can’t even estimate how many acts go unreported.

On the record, there is a local case awaiting continuance in the Maricopa County Superior Court and the Police Report reads like a natural segment for 48 hours or dateline. Authorities have cautioned me to let the process take its’ course; unfortunately the process and the preventable measures miss their mark more often than they remedy the situation.

When it becomes a he said she said situation, the woman sometimes feels like a cat on a hot tin roof and she recants her story to protect herself from being attacked again by the same perpetrator; in other words, it’s a catch 22 situation.

The NFL Commissioner (Roger Goodell) has announced a new strict policy to combat domestic policy and I hope boxing will take a cue. Unfortunately Boxing doesn’t have a single strong willed commissioner or director. I shudder when I think about more women being beaten, dragged by their partners, lovers or spouses. Isn’t it time to act;? Please write your local boxing commission and simply ask to stop the violence. Anyone can start a petition or make a phone call!

Short Jabs: Super Featherweight Noe Lopez Jr. (Nogales, Sonora, Mexico) is training at Power MMA in Gilbert with Jose Benavidez Jr. and he has a pending fight in Mexico later this month…..WBC USNBC Bantamweight Champion Alexis Santiago still looking for a challenger in his 9/20 title bout at the Celebrity Theatre. Also on the bill, Carlos Castro is still looking for a foe……Iron Boy Gym will host an open media workout on Tuesday, September 16 at 2 PM at their facility which is located at 4238 S. 37th Street (Near Broadway) in Phoenix; 4 days ahead of the Iron Boy XV Show.

Most of the scheduled local fighters are expected to show and food will be available for the working press. I doubt if Shane Mosley Jr. and his Dad or Andy Ruiz will appear. In journalistic terms, these events are a crap shoot on who elects to show up. The mandatory official weigh-in will be held at the Crescent Crown Distributors in Mesa on Friday , September 19 at 2 PM. Iron Boy XV takes place at the Celebrity Theater on Saturday. September 20. Boxing patrons are encouraged to buy tickets early. The last event was a sell out and scalpers had a field day… Madison boxing Gym will host a smoker at Greenfield School (7009 S. 10th Street in Phoenix; show starts at 2PM ….circle your calendar for the Tucson Amateur Boxing Show in Tucson. Call Jesse Haro at 520-631-6900 for details…..Until Next Time!

About Don Smith

Don Smith has written 79 post in this blog.

Don Smith became interest in boxing from age 8 when his Dad gave him a pair of gloves, he eventually wore them out. During his Don Smith served in the US Army as a Military Police Desk SGT. The skills he learned while writing reports laid the foundation for him becoming a journalist. According to Don “I didn’t really flip the switch to journalism until I was detained in Belfast Ireland for taking pictures during my vacation in Ireland. I made the questionable mistake of trying to albii my way out of the situation by claiming to be a journalist, wrong move. No diplomatic immunity, ha ha. II returned to college in Texas, wrote for my college paper as a paid staffer”. He grew up during the Friday Night Era, and In his role as a sports writer, he has rubbed elbos with Leonard, Norton, Ali, Mancini, Cokes, Paez and other champion boxers. His his works have been high lighted and published by Community Newspapers in Texas, Sports Stringer, Dallas Morning News, WRR Radio Critic Dallas Texas, KCHU Radio Talk Show Host Dallas, Texas, Talk Shoow host, Plano Texas, Interviewer for OPUS & STARSHINE Networks, Interviewed more than 1,000 celebrities including 7 US Presidents, Athletes, Movie Stars, etc.

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