Boxing gloves
Boxing gloves | Pic: Emanuel Rudnicki

The spread of coronavirus (COVID-19) forced almost all major sporting events scheduled for the next few months to be postponed or cancelled. This also includes the International Boxing Hall of Fame in Canastota, NY, which is closed until the ended of March. Yet, IBHOF is in hopes to still host its annual ceremony scheduled for the weekend of June 11-14.

“Hall of Fame weekend is still on for mid June, IBHOF executive director Ed Brophy recently told New York Post. “But we’ll continue to follow the rules and regulations of the county and the state and monitor all the different guidelines and watch what happens day-by-day and week-by-week as we go through March.”

The ban on public gatherings of more than 10 people is currently in place in the United States in order to help fight COVID-19 outbreak.

The list of this year’s inductees into IBHOF includes former two-division champion (middleweight and light heavyweight) Bernard Hopkins, multi-weight champions Juan Manuel Marquez and “Sugar” Shane Mosley. The class of non-participants features promoters Lou DiBella, Kathy Duva and the late Dan Goossen, as well as journalist Bernard Fernandez, and author Thomas Hauser.

In addition, this year will make history when the first class of female boxers will be inducted into the International Boxing Hall of Fame. Christy Martin and Lucia Rijker will be inducted in the modern era category. 90-year-old Barbara Buttrick, who competed in the 50s will be inducted into the trailblazer category.

“It’s an historic class with the first females to be enshrined and have their plaques in the museum,” said Brophy said. “Ticket sales for the weekend had been good since the fall when we made the announcement of the inductees. We’re still right on target for have a special weekend.”

“We’re going to continue to monitor the next week and a half and the beginning of April and determine what is happening. Everything is day-to-day. It’s hard to forecast out to June. But the best position we can be in is to maintain our plans that are well underway and keep moving forward.”

The museum has been closed to the public since March 17. The induction dinner has been postponed from April 19 to September 20 at Russo’s On The Bay in Queens.

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