WATCH: Reuniting with former contestant Bryant Brannon

TRENTON, NJ — No discussion of the New Jersey capital’s boxing history can take place without mentioning Bryant Brannon.

The former Trenton super middleweight contender fought professionally between 1992 and 1999, before returning for singles bouts in 2002 and 2005. He is best remembered for his 1996 title challenge from a debuting Roy Jones Jr ., giving a spirited effort before being knocked out in two rounds at Madison Square Garden.

Brannon, now 56, was among former professional boxers who were celebrated at an amateur boxing show on Saturday September 10 for their contributions to Trenton boxing history. Brannon, along with 1996 Olympic bronze medalist Terrance Cauthen and others received awards from event organizer Robert Smarr of Knuckle Game Boxing in Trenton, to commemorate their inductions into the New Jersey Boxing Hall of Fame.

Brannon worked his way up the rankings the hard way and lists his finest moment as the night he beat Frank Rhodes in 1995 to win the NABF super middleweight title. Brannon suffered a severe cut in the first round, but was able to fight back in the fourth round, when he won a technical decision.

“My proudest moment as a fighter was when I won my first national title, which was the NABF championship. I had suffered a headbutt in the first round and it was a really bad headbutt and the ref wanted to stop the fight but I encouraged him to give me a few punches,” Brannon told The Ring.

Brannon then beat future super middleweight titleholder Eric Lucas in his next fight, but his career never really rebounded from the loss to Jones. He fought until 1999, when a knockout loss to James Butler derailed his dreams of returning to world title level.

Brannon says he hopes to dedicate time at local gyms to helping boxers, and he has a few lessons he can teach boxers — and almost anyone else — about the importance of avoiding kicks. distractions outside the ring. He had been shot multiple times and turned his life around after serving time for robbery, and advises other young boxing aspirants to stay away from trouble that can cut short their boxing dreams.

“I would let them know that their worst opponent and their opponent is definitely themselves,” Brannon said.

“If a fighter wants to be a great fighter, the best thing they can do is say no to drugs, say no to alcohol, crime and gang activities. And they can do whatever they want to do. in the sport of boxing.

Comments are closed.