Adam Kownacki was genuinely touched, he said, at receiving the Fighter of the Year Award at the annual Ring 8 (NY) gala, which unfolded Sunday, and saw the Polish born heavyweight graciously thank his family and team.
Meeting “Terrible” Tim Witherspoon was a pleasure, he related. “That was pretty dope. The honor was amazing. A humbling experience. I hope the first of many rewards!”
Can you see how that can happen? Get those titles, get all that money, could that happen to him?
“I think it’s a life-style,” said the 20-0 boxer, who lives on Long Island. And who could snap him out of it?
He chuckled. “With my family and trainers and manager there is NO WAY they would allow that,” he said.
Kownacki is rated highest by the IBF; he’s No. 3, two is open, and Kubrat Pulev is ranked No. 1 by the New Jersey based sanctioning body. The Pole, age 30, is No. 8 in the WBC, No. 4 WBA and No. 5 as determined by the WBO, for the record.
Here is a release touching on that Ring 8 fete, which helps raise funds for an organization which spotlights and helps out veteran fighters:
NEW YORK (December 10, 2019) – The 33rd annual Ring 8 Holiday Event and Awards Ceremony was held this past Sunday at Russo’s On The Bay in Howard Beach, New York. There were 354 attendees.
The New York State Boxing Hall of Fame, sponsored by Ring 8, announced its Class of 2020 (see below):
Headlining Ring 8’s 2019 Awards Ceremony were Fighter of the Decade, Amanda “Real Deal” Serrano (37-1-1, 27 KOs), of Brooklyn by way of Puerto Rico; undefeated heavyweight contender (Fighter of the Year) Adam “Babyface” Kownacki (20-0, 15 KOs), of Brooklyn by way of Poland; Legend Award winners three-time, three-division world champion Iran “The Blade” Barkley (43-19,1 27 KOs), of Bronx, and two-time, two-division world champion Junior “Poison” Jones (50-6, 28 KOs), of Brooklyn; and two-time world heavyweight champion “Terrible” Tim Witherspoon (55-13-1, 28 KOs), of Philadelphia, the Muhammad Ali Humanitarian Award winner.
Below is a complete list of the 2019 award winners:
2019 RING 8 Award Winners
Fighter of the Decade: Amanda Serrano
Fighter of the Year: Adam Kownacki
Legends Award: Iran Barkley & Junior Jones,
Muhammad Ali Humanitarian: Tim Witherspoon
Sam Kellerman Media Award: Gerry Cooney & Randy Gordon
Long & Meritorious Service: Daryl Peoples
Uncrowned Champion: John Capobianco
Prospect of the Year: Left “2 Gunz” Gonzalez
Member of the Year: James Monteverde
NYS Official of the Year: Waleska Roldan
Trainer of the Year: Scott Lopeck
Manager of the Year: Keith Connolly
Community Service Award: Michael Corleone
Amateur of the Year: Nisa Rodriguez
Amateur Official of the Year: Michael “Biggie” O’Conner
Good Guy Award: Peter Frutkoff
Twenty-eight new NYSBHOF inductees were announced (see below):
NYSBHOF CLASS OF 2020
Jorge Ahumada Soldier Bartfield
Alfredo Escalera Steve Belloise
Freddie Liberatore Jimmy Goodrich
Dennis Milton Tami Mauriello
Lou Savarese Davey Moore
Merqui Sosa Freddie Welsh
Don Ackerman Lester Bromberg
Bobby Cassidy Jr. Dan Daniel
Rick Glaser Bobby Gleason
Jack Hirsch Flash Gordon
Max Kellerman A.J. Liebling
Dr. William Latham Tony Mazzarella
Julie Lederman Dan Morgan
The seventh annual New York State Boxing Hall of Fame induction ceremony will be held, Sunday, April 19, 2020, at Russo’s on The Bay.