Father-son combo marks first for Hall

Tracy Harris Patterson, left, and boxing great Floyd Patterson will make Hall of Fame history. AP Photo/Ron Frehm

The third class of the New York State Boxing Hall of Fame has been announced, and for the first time, a father-son combination will gain entry.

Two-time heavyweight champion Floyd Patterson (55-8-1, 40 KOs) of Brooklyn will be inducted posthumously, along with his adopted son, boxing trainer and former WBC/IBF super featherweight champion Tracy Harris (63-8-2, 43 KOs) at an induction dinner on Sunday, March 30.

"This is another very strong class of inductees," Ring 8 and NYSBHOF president Bob Duffy said. "We are honoring New York's finest in our sport. This is all about recognizing great fighters, as well as others involved in boxing, from the state of New York."

Other boxers heading into the NYSBHOF include former WBC/WBA welterweight champion Billy Backus (49-20-5, 23 KOs) of Canastota, former WBC featherweight champion Kevin Kelley of Flushing, Queens, former WBC featherweight champion Juan LaPorte (40-17, 22 KOs) of Brooklyn, Huntington's heavyweight title challenger Gerry Cooney (28-3, 24 KOs), Brooklyn's two-time middleweight title challenger Mustafa Hamsho (44-5-2, 28 KOs) and Glen Cove's Howard Davis, Jr. (36-6-1, 14 KOs), a 1976 Olympic gold medalist and a three-time world title challenger.

Other participants being inducted include lightweight Champion Lou Ambers (91-8-7, 28 KOs) of Herkimer, three-time welterweight Champion Jack Britton (239-57-44) of Clinton, and featherweight champion Terry McGovern (55-8-1, 40 KOs) of Brooklyn.

Living non-boxer inductees are ESPN boxing commentator and trainer Teddy Atlas of Staten Island; promoter Lou DiBella of Brooklyn, boxing historian and Showtime analyst Steve Farhood of Brooklyn, trainer and Sunnyside Gardens matchmaker Gene Moore of Queens, and boxing writer/historian Angelo Prospero of Rochester.

"I'm honored, and you know I'm a Brooklyn, N.Y., kid!" DiBella said. "It means a lot to me to be in the same class as Steve and Teddy, two friends and men of integrity."

Farhood, too, was touched. "For better or worse, I consider myself as true and pure New Yorker as there is, so it's with great pride that I enter the New York State Boxing Hall of Fame. And to be inducted with so many fighters that I covered and now consider friends, such as Gerry Cooney, Mustafa Hamsho and Howard Davis Jr. is a real thrill."

Deceased non-boxers in the Class of 2014 are trainer/cutman Whitey Bimstein of Manhattan's Lower East Side, legendary trainer Cus D'Amato (Bronx and Catskill), who launched the career of "Iron" Mike Tyson, Floyd Patterson and Jose Torres, trainer William Muldoon (Belfast/Caneadea and Westchester County), who was also the first chairman of the New York State Athletic Commission, and manager Tom O'Rourke of New York City.