The bell sounds Wednesday for the nation’s premiere annual boxing tournament, and it’s worth its weight in gold.
Registration is opening for the 91st Annual Daily News Golden Gloves Tournament, a 10-week elimination contest to determine New York’s best amateur boxer.
The triumphant men — and women — will join the ranks of such celebrated champs as Sugar Ray Robinson, Floyd Patterson, Riddick Bowe and Zab Judah.
Along with Big Apple bragging rights, winners get their tickets punched to boxing’s big time.
“They get a chance to be in the same conversation as some of the greats,” said Daily News Golden Gloves Director Brian Adams.
“They also get a sense of respect in the neighborhood. You walk around with a Golden Gloves chain around your neck, you’re going to get a lot of respect.”
Before Adams was director of the Daily News Golden Gloves, he was a competitor who made his presence known in the 132-pound weight class in the early ’90s. The New York native reached five straight finals, capturing three titles.
Among Adams’ mentors was five-time Golden Gloves champ Mark Breland.
“Everyone knew about the Daily News Golden Gloves,” Breland, an Olympic gold medalist and professional welterweight champ, said recently.
“All anyone would talk about was getting to the Gloves. It was the big thing.”
The Golden Gloves was the brainchild of Daily News sports editor and amateur boxing enthusiast Paul Gallico in the 1920s.
To this day, The News hopes to promote the sport of boxing and provide youth an opportunity for sportsmanship, competition, self-improvement and skill development.
“All of the competitors are fantastic athletes who bring big hearts into the ring,” said Daily News Publisher and Editor-in-Chief Arthur Browne.
“They have worked incredibly hard to hone their skills. Win or lose, they are an inspiration to watch.”
The winner receives a necklace featuring a pair of golden gloves holding a diamond.
Golden Gloves champs from 2017 included Michael Ayeboafo, who won the 152-pound novice title.
Ayeboafo also won the Mark Breland Award as the tournament’s best novice boxer.
Justin Biggs won the 165-pound open title, and Jillian Bliss won the 132-pound women’s crown.
Other women winners included Krystal Dixon, who took home the 165-pound title, and Juliette La Disa, who won the 106-pound crown.
The 2018 tournament begins Feb. 5 at B. B. King Blues Club in Times Square.
Among the scheduled participants will be two-time Golden Gloves champ Bruce Carrington Jr. and seven-time champ Nisa Rodriguez.
Golden Gloves registration is open through Dec. 29. Entries can be emailed to [email protected]
Required signup information includes complete name, date of birth, address, club affiliation and preferred weight class.
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