One of boxing’s most charismatic and exciting fighters for over two decades.
Vinny Pazienza has won five world titles in three different weight classes: lightweight, junior middleweight and super middleweight. Over time, he fought all the top names of the 1980s and 1990s, including Roberto Duran, Brett Lally, Lloyd Honeyghan, Robbie Sims, Dana Rosenblatt and Greg Haugen.
The most impressive aspect of his career, though, may have come midway through his career, when a serious auto accident sent him to the hospital for a three-month stay. Against doctor’s orders, “The Paz” began working out in the gym – while wearing a stabilizing halo. His first opponent was former WBC super welterweight champ Luis Santana, a win for Paz. He would go on to fight Duran and Rosenblatt in title bouts.
A fine ambassador for the sport, Pazienza is quick to take time with fans and has been serving as a TV color man on boxing broadcasts in recent years.
He was elected to the National Italian American Sports Hall of Fame in 2002.