Howard Davis, Jr.
|Full name||Howard Edward Davis, Jr.|
February 14, 1956 |
Glen Cove, New York
|Height||1.78 m (5 ft 10 in)|
|Weight||60 kg (130 lb)|
|Rated at||Lightweight and Featherweight|
Howard Edward Davis, Jr. (born February 14, 1956) is a retired world-class American amateur and professional boxer. Growing up on Long Island as the eldest of 10 children, Davis first learned boxing from his father. After being inspired by a movie about Muhammad Ali, Davis embarked on his amateur career. He won the 1976 Olympic gold medal one week after his mother died. He was also awarded the "Val Barker Trophy at the Olympics, beating out such boxers Sugar Ray Leonard, Michael Spinks and Leon Spinks.
He turned professional after the Olympics and went on to a professional record of 36–6–1 with 14 knockouts. He retired in 1996. As of 2009, he works as boxing director at American Top Team in Coconut Creek, Florida, where he trains both amateur and professional boxers and MMA fighters. He is also a motivational speaker and a musician.
As an amateur, Davis was trained by his father, a former boxer. He had an outstanding amateur career. In 1976, Davis won the Olympic gold medal in the lightweight division in Montreal, Canada. Davis was also named the Outstanding Boxer of the 1976 Olympics and given the Val Barker Trophy. His Olympic teammates included Sugar Ray Leonard, Michael Spinks and Leon Spinks.
His Olympic victory came just one week after his mother died of a heart attack.
Davis had an amateur record of 125–5.
Amateur accomplishments include:
- 1973 National AAU Champion (125 lb)
- Defeated Leroy Veasley of Detroit in the final
- 1974 World Championships (125 lbs) in Havana, Cuba
- 1976 National AAU Champion (132 lbs)
- Defeated Thomas Hearns on points.
- 1976 Olympic Trials
- Defeated Aaron Pryor to qualify at 132 pounds
- 1976 Summer Olympics – Gold Medal (132 lbs) and Val Barker Award winner for Most Outstanding Boxer of the Games
Davis turned professional in 1977. After winning his first thirteen fights, he challenged Jim Watt for the WBC lightweight title in 1980. Watt won by a fifteen-round unanimous decision. In 1984, with a record of 26–1, Davis fought Edwin Rosario for the WBC lightweight title. Rosario retained his title with a twelve-round split decision. His final attempt to win a world title came in 1988. Davis was stunningly knocked out in the first round by IBF junior welterweight champion Buddy McGirt. He retired after the fight. In 1994, Davis launched a comeback as a middleweight. He retired for good after a second-round knockout loss to Dana Rosenblatt. He finished with a professional record of 36–6–1 with 14 KO's.
In July 2009, Glen Cove honored Davis by naming a street after him. The Mayor also proclaimed July 10 as Howard Davis Day in honor of both father and son.
Life after boxing
Currently, Davis is serving as a boxing trainer to MMA fighters, including Chuck Liddell and fighters from American Top Team. He also works as a sports commentator, a public speaker, and a promoter for Fight Time Promotions.
Davis was a boxing coach/trainer for Chuck Liddell on The Ultimate Fighter 11.
Davis' wife Karla Guadamuz-Davis serves as his Publicist and Business Manager. (www.kgcmarketingteam.com)
Muhammad Ali and Joe Frazier
|BWAA Fighter of the Year
shared award with Sugar Ray Leonard, Leo Randolph,
Leon Spinks and Michael Spinks