Posted by Don Smith on Feb 9, 2014
Goossen On The Record, Iron Boy 11 & More

Goossen On The Record, Iron Boy 11 & More

Goossen On The Record, Iron Boy 11 & More
Arizona Boxing News & Notes with Don Smith

Boxing Fans,

Boxing Promoter Dan Goossen and I met years ago when he was promoting James “Lights Out” Toney for an upcoming fight. I don’t remember the time and place, but I do remember a smiling Goossen working the event and very much in control. His hands on promotional skills were readily evident and it was easy to see how he could discover Mr. T and turn him into a very successful television personality in the late 1970’s.

In the 80’s he founded Ten Goossen Boxing, named in honor of the ten Goossen siblings. Over the years he has handled and promoted an impressive array of boxing superstars including Gabe and Rafael Ruelas, Mike Tyson, Hopkins and countless others.  Some scribes describe the 67 year old Goossen as a “Boxing Icon.”

In March of 2002, Goossen and construction magnate Ronald Tutor founded Goossen-Tutor and together the dynamic duo has turned Goossen-Tutor into a powerful and influential promotional company. Their current client list includes Andre “S.O.G.” Ward, Cristobal “The Nightmare” Arreola, Malik Scott, Vanes “The Nightmare” Martirosyan and   Shawn “Mos De Oro” Estrada. There is some speculation that Arizona prospect Abel Ramos (8-0-1) may soon become a member of the Goossen Team.  Ramos is scheduled to fight March 21 at the Morongo Casino Resort & Spa in Cabazon California on the Martirosyan vs. Cuelo Card.

I called Mr. Goossen last month to inquire about Ramos and the rumor that Arreola would be coming to Arizona to train for his upcoming WBC Heavyweight Title bout with Bermane Stiverne. He wasn’t available, so I left a message with one of his staff members.

Goossen called me back within hours and confirmed that Goossen –Tutor was interested in signing Ramos and yes, Team Arreola is planning on setting up training camp in Arizona.

I brought up the issue of Andre Ward taking legal steps to end his ties with Goossen-Tutor. The promoter believes their contract with the super middleweight champ will be honored. We didn’t discuss the circulating gossip that Bob Arum and Top Rank Boxing  were instigating the potential break-up.. Arum has denied any wrong doing, but would consider signing Ward if his contract is revoked.

After our 2-3 minute chat, we said goodbye out of respect for pending appointments. The next day, I emailed a request for an interview with him and included questions with my communiqué and he graciously accepted my written request. As customary with my previous Q&A sessions this printed text remains true to its’ original content. I did remove one question because I thought it was weak and repetitive; therefore, it was deleted.

ABNN: Why and how did you become a boxing promoter?

DG: Boxing had been a staple in the Goossen household since I can remember. My dad, a former LA Police Detective, dabbled in the management of  boxers in the 50’s and 60’s. Coming from a family of 8 boys and 2 girls, my dad would regularly move the family room furniture to the back walls, and would put on gloves on his sons and teach us how to defend ourselves. Once one brother got a little edge on another brother, my dad would stop there, and put the next two kids up. He wanted us to know how to handle ourselves without being bullies.  During those years, no sport was bigger than boxing and we seemed to watch every fight that was televised. One of my brothers boxed professionally, another brother played for the Dodgers and during the off season would work-out and spar with heavyweights. Two other brothers would work-out daily and they too boxed in the gym for many years. It was in our blood.  Some great memories.

ABNN: What is the #1 misconception about a promoter?

DG: That we’re all dishonest. I’ve always acted as if I’m on the same team of the boxer and not in an adversarial position. I instituted the Ali Act before it was a thought in anyone’s head, much less when it became law. Back in the early 80’s I would  disclose all of the revenue/profit to our boxers so there was nothing they could ever come back with that they didn’t know. I’ve always said the best sales pitch is the truth, because nobody believes it.

ABNN: You testified before Congress in 1999 during the Muhammad Ali Boxing Reform Act hearing if my memory serves me correctly…any regrets? Did the passing of the legislation help the welfare of boxers and do we need to revisit the issue? And were you the only major promoter to testify on this issue?

DG: I have no regrets in testifying. I was hoping that this would lead to establishing a “commissioner” overseeing our sport as in the other major leagues, but that goal seemed to wane after the Ali Act became law. As for helping the boxers, I don’t believe I’m the one that can answer that. And yes, I was the only one (promoter) to testify on this issue.

ABNN: What piece of advice would you give someone who is thinking about becoming a promoter?

DG: It’s hard work and you have to have a good team with you, and don’t forget it can be very costly until you reach the upper levels.

ABNN: If you were boxing commissioner for one day; what changes would you make?

DG:  Unfortunately, not having a sole commissioner to oversee our sport, i.e. baseball, football, etc., the commissioners job is restricted to an individual state. But if there was one thing I would love to have is a penalty system for any participant in our sport, fighters, promoters, managers, trainers, etc. that speaks badly of our sport or blatantly accuses officials of wrongdoing. Like the other major sports, this type of behavior is not tolerated and is punishable with fines to suspensions. I’m tired of our sport being denigrated by its’ own people.

ABNN: What business advice would you give to an amateur boxer about to turn professional?

DG:  Try to make the Olympic team before turning professional. Young men turning professional that have participated in the Olympics have cachet moving forward in the pros. If they’ve tried to reach the Olympics and believe their style is more conducive to the professional ranks, then turn pro.

ABNN: What % of your shows has lost money?

DG: In the developmental stages of promoting the lower level events and building your young fighters, I have what we call are investments into the fighters; sounds much better than losses.

ABNN: Do you support the ordering of mandatory MRI testing after a knockout result?

DG: I support anything and everything that protects the health of the fighter.

ABNN: Will the recent focus on concussions in the NFL affect the sport of boxing?

DG:  Boxing, through its’ commissions, has recognized concussions that occur during fights for many years. Ringside doctors will suspend a fighter from training or fighting for a minimum period of thirty days up to ninety days, with some to have clearance from a doctor depending on the extent of the concussion. Fight Fax, the official record keeper of boxing, keeps tabs for all the concussions worldwide of all suspended fighters.

ABNN: Mr. Goossen thank you for your cooperation!

Boxing Noise:  Veteran Match Maker Tony Esquer has a call out for fighters in the super featherweight division. He is looking for an opponent for Pedro “Little Pete” Duran in a 4 round February 15 contest in Los Angeles.  Short notice is normally a bad omen. Duran’s record stands at 4-0 with 3 knockouts. Call 602-299-5665 and ask for Tony. More Boxing Noise:

  • Light welterweight Ray (Lightning Jr.) Lampkin moved to Arizona from Portland, Oregon to restart his boxing career which was stalled in neutral. He staked out United Central Gym as his training headquarters then moved to Phoenix Boys Center and now he has moved back to Portland. According to sources, the 30 year old boxer (4-0) was granted permission to train in Portland by his handlers; but was scheduled to return some time ago. His disappearing act has cost him a spot on the 2/22 Iron Boy X1 Card at the Celebrity Theater in Phoenix. Burning bridges won’t ignite a career or win friends in the Arizona boxing community.

Iron Boy X1 Update:

  •  Defending WBC USNBC bantamweight champion Alexis Santiago (15-3-1) fighting out of Phoenix, Arizona takes on tough Hanzel Martinez from Tijuana Mexico in a marquee title match on the 2/22 Iron Boy X1 show at the Celebrity Theater in Phoenix.
  •  Former Heavyweight Champion Siarhei Liakhovich fighting out of Scottsdale, Arizona shares the co-main with Chad Davis from Phoenix Arizona.  A defeat could very well spell the end for the former champ who suffered a crushing 1st round knockout loss at the hands of highly regarded Deontay “The Bronze Bomber” Wilder on 8/9 of last year.
  •  In other scheduled action on  the Iron Boy X1 card, rising prospect Francisco C. De Vaca meets Alan Garcia, Joachim Alcine vs.  Jovan Ramirez, Edgar Brito vs. Christian Cartier, Brandon Riddell (Riddell Gym)  vs. Misael Chacon (Arizona Fight Club) Alexis Zazuets (managed by Cameron Dunkin)  vs. Jesus Sandoval. Joey Ruelas, Andrew “Hurricane” Hernandez and Keenan Carbajal are aboard, but waiting for opponents. Ticket prices range from $25.00-40.00 and there are no bad seats at the celebrity theater.  Doors open at 5:p.m., Saturday 2/22/14/.

More Boxing News: The rocky relationship between Phoenix boxer Mario Esparza and Fan Base Promotions could end soon. Both want out and that may happen sooner than later. Mario (1-0-1) and his team of overly optimistic handlers think Mario has the potential to become a boxing superstar while Fan Base believes the kid lacks the punch, maturity and heart to become a contender….  “The War”- Arizona USA vs. Sonora Mexico promises the best amateur competitors from both sides of the border on 2/8 in Nogales, Mexico. For tickets and more details call Coach Sergio Zaragoza at 520-907-5546….Arizona amateur fighters Alfonso Olvera and Kathy McPherson brought back Bronze medals from the Elite Nationals held in Spokane, Washington last month….8 year old Jameel Maldonado and 10 year old Hyrum Correa   won top honors at the Silver Gloves FightkingsglovesTournament in Kansas City, February 1. 2014. Both young men train at Azteca Gym in Phoenix…. Veteran civil servant Valenzuela has replaced retiring Dennis O’Connell as Executive Director of the Arizona State Boxing & MMA Commission. Perks include bigger office, bump in salary and free enormous sized headaches. Right man for the job. Dennis will hang around as a consultant until the checks stop….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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