Tis a night to look forward, and to have a look back, and savor time with loved ones, am I correct, Badou Jack?

We will look back on 2016 as a fairly shitty year, we lost too many greats, Ali's last shuffle had us shedding many a tear.

But to dwell on sad matters, and stay stuck in matters blue, prevents us from lauding the NYF Fight of the Year, Yamanaka-Moreno 2.

Or wait… So hard to choose, I cannot lie, I pick also Vargas v Salido, and call it a tie.

Congrats, you warriors majestic, in the ring you were lords, and now you can boast winning NYFIE AWARDS!

Yes, the world keeps turning, and fate sometimes offers a soul testing plan, but hard times didn't deter the NYF Fighter of the Year, a most stellar common man.

A boring name, yes, but such claims to fame! Beating Fonfara and stopping Hopkins the sage, means Joe Smith's exploits leaped off the page.

We must choose a tutor, one Trainer of the Year, and we are on it right now, have no fear. We like Smith's teacher, Jerry Capobianco for the win, his teaching and motivating sent Hopkins to the dust bin.

Other memories we shall cherish unfolded in Brooklyn, where at Barclays masses gave cheer, and lead us to tap that building as Venue of the Year.


To be sure the absence of Mayweather made the sport a bit smaller, but we appreciated other talents, like Heather Hardyimage, the Brookyn Brawler. Yes, women started getting buzz and attention, it's about time they got proper media mention.

Hardy is a grinder, no one works as hard, she soon will be enjoying topping the card. For now, an award she can hold and cherish so dear, gaining a NYFIE as Female Fighter of the Year.

This next award, it goes to a character unlike any other, it's for Entertrainer of the Year, to my more tanned brother. Eric Kelly, so profane and witty, happy to bust on Wall Streeters, exhibiting form beyond shitty!

We look forward, with optimism and hope, with a fervent desire that Trump is no dope. He's acted without tact and insulted guys and gals, and what's up with him and Putin being best pals? But back to boxing, the best metaphor for life, the theater of the unexpected, and distraction from strife.

We watch these ring heroes, and marvel at their strength of will, we gain courage from their showcases of super human skill. New days and months beckon, and we ponder the whims of fate, but to question the unknowable is to face a locked gate.

Instead, I choose to herald the citizens who've I've come to know, for whom my thankfulness continues to grow. The NY Fights crew, Laura, Gatling and Morrie the Scot, their hard work and dedication, I appreciate more than a lot.

This year NYF will see expansion and an enlargened cast, for that we thank advertisers, like Gleason's and Everlast!


We look to the horizon with podcast TALKBOX and are excited to know, we see massive momentum and room to grow.


There will be missteps and losses and cuts along the way, but in 2017, our age-fueled wisdom allows us to say:

If history and nature are the most worthy to guide, it behooves one and all, to look on the bright side.

The year will provide monumental feats and thrills, pugilistic potency that offers innumerable thrills…

So I thank you all for reading, and bid to you with good cheer, blessed days to you all, to all happy new year!



ADVERTISERS, MESSAGE WOODS at [email protected] to join Gleason's and Everlast and company!

Founder/editor Michael Woods got addicted to boxing in 1990, when Buster Douglas shocked the world with his demolition of the then-impregnable Mike Tyson. The Brooklyn-based journalist has covered the sport since for ESPN The Magazine,, Bad Left Hook and RING. His journalism career started with NY Newsday in 1999. Michael Woods is also an accomplished blow by blow and color man, having done work for Top Rank, DiBella Entertainment, EPIX, and for Facebook Fightnight Live, since 2017.