The tradition of boxing is a storied one, with countless tales of epic performances atop the squared circle through decades.
Needless to say, the sport has produced a litany of excellent fighters throughout its long history – generations of incredible fighters, imbued with pugilistic knowledge and experience that has been passed down from fathers to sons. But while not all children of legends have been as successful as their fathers who came before them, the next generation does their best.
Their fathers are beacons of the sport throughout time, and the fighters on this list are young and represent the future of boxing. Whether they turn out like their predecessors, only time will tell.
While this is not an extensive list, and there are many more out there, these boxers are honoring the generation before them by carrying on their legacies in the ring. Today, Evolve Daily shares five young boxers who are following in their father’s footsteps.
1) Nico Ali Walsh (2-0, 2 KO’s)
Former undefeated world champion Laila Ali, Muhammad Ali’s daughter, is considered by many as one of the greatest female boxers of all time. She is hands down the most famous and the most successful of the late legend’s children. But Muhammad Ali’s grandson, Nico ‘The Ghost’ Ali Walsh, is certainly trying to follow the family tradition and keep the family legacy alive.
After a solid amateur career, Walsh turned professional a few months ago, and has since gone a perfect 2-0 to start as a prizefighter. Back-to-back technical knockout victories over Jordan Weeks and James Westley II this year showed Walsh wields great power in his fists.
Of course, whether or not “The Ghost” lives up to the Ali name, only time will tell. The jury is still out on that, but there’s no denying the 21-year-old has talent, and that boxing runs through his veins.
Regardless of how he ends up when his career is over, Walsh is an excellent prospect today, and one fans should follow closely.
2) Tim Tszyu (20-0, 15 KO’s)
Tim Tsyzu, son of former undisputed light welterweight boxing world champion Kostya Tszyu, is Australia’s top-ranked super welterweight. He is of Russian, Korean and Mongolian descent.
Tim currently boasts of an unblemished 20-0 professional record, including 15 knockouts. His most recent win, however, looks to be his most impressive. Just last November, Tim scored a unanimous decision victory over highly regarded Japanese fighter Takeshi Inoue to retain his WBO Global Light Middleweight Title and add the WBO Asia Pacific Light Middleweight Title to his trophy cabinet.
Tim’s father, Kostya is an Australian national sports hero. He is one of a very few boxers in history to have unified the light welterweight world titles. In 2011, the elder Tszyu was inducted into the International Boxing Hall of Fame in 2011.
Kostya may be the better Tszyu right now, but Tim isn’t too far behind and is nipping at the heels of his legendary father.
3) Shane Mosley Jr. (17-4, 10 KO’s)
Shane “Sugarman” Mosley Jr., son of legendary multiple-division world champion “Sugar” Shane Mosley is carving out his own legacy in boxing. The 30-year-old from Pomona, California is currently 17-4, with 10 knockouts to his name, and is consistently improving his skills as a professional.
He has currently won four of his last five fights, including an impressive stoppage win over Cristian Olivas in February. Shane Jr. is looking at making his own name in the sport, but the family name is no doubt a massive weight on his shoulders.
His father is a multiple-time world champion across three weight classes, having previously held the IBF Lightweight World Title, the WBA (Super) and the WBC Welterweight World Titles, and the WBA (Super), WBC, and Ring Magazine Light Middleweight Titles.
Big shoes to fill? Undoubtedly. Can Shane Mosley Jr. pull it off? Absolutely. But he has to start picking up the pace. At age 30, there isn’t much time left.
4) Arturo Gatti Jr. (Amateur)
These next two boxers are young and on the rise. Arturo Gatti Jr., son of the late Arturo “Thunder” Gatti, appears like a shadow of his father in the ring, with the same penchant for showmanship. Looks like the little guy is having a lot of fun in there, especially given the circumstances.
After an illustrious career, Arturo Gatti Sr. was found dead in a hotel room in Brazil while on vacation attending his sister’s wedding. Gatti’s widow, Amanda Rodrigues, was charged with first degree murder after giving investigators conlicting stories of what happened. Ultimately, the charges were dropped and Brazilian authorities concluded Gatti’s death was by suicide.
It’s a sad story, indeed. Gatti was a world champion in two weight divisions, having previously held the IBF Junior Lightweight World Title and the WBC Super Lightweight World Title. He is considered to this day one of the most exciting fighters in the history of the sport.
Here’s to hoping Arturo Gatti Jr. has the same level of success his father did.
5) Jimuel Pacquiao (Amateur)
Last but not least is Jimuel Pacquiao, son of boxing’s only eight-division world champion, Manny “Pacman” Pacquiao and his wife Jinkee.
Obviously, there isn’t a boxing fan in the world who doesn’t know the name Manny Pacquiao. The former pound-for-pound king who is now running for President of his native Philippines, offers one of the greatest rags-to-riches stories in all of sports.
Manny started off selling donuts on the poverty-stricken streets of Manila before discovering boxing and rising to superstardom. Throughout his career, he has faced and defeated some of the biggest names the sport had to offer.
Jimuel lived a comfortable life, financially secure under his father’s life earnings. Manny is now valued at $200-$300 million according to reputable sources. Still, that hasn’t stopped Jimuel Pacquiao from trying to follow in his father’s footsteps.
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