Today, the announcement came down from the International Boxing Hall of Fame and Museum of the new inductees to their hallowed class. It included Bernard Hopkins, Juan Manuel Marquez, and Shane Mosley in the modern category for men, Christy Martin and Lucia Rijker in the modern category for women, and Barbara Buttrick for the Trailblazer category for women. The IBHOF also added promoters Lou DiBella, Kathy Duva, and Dan Goossen plus journalists Bernard Fernandez and Thomas Hauser. Former lightweight champion Frank Erne will be honored in the Old Timer category and Paddy Ryan will be inducted in the Pioneer category.
The induction weekend will take place from June 11th to June 14th in Canastota, New York.
Hopkins, who has won world titles in the middleweight and light heavyweight division, had one of the longest runs as middleweight champion during his career. He recorded wins over Felix Trinidad, William Joppy, Roy Jones, Antonio Tarver, and Jean Pascal. Upon hearing the news of him being chosen, he was very thankful. “I’m glad I’m entering the house of greatness past and present,” Hopkins said. “Thanks to boxing I became a greater inspiration to the world.”
Juan Manuel Marquez was a three division world champion and had some of the most memorable fights against the likes of Joel Casamayor, Juan Diaz, Michael Katsidis, and Marco Antonio Barrera. His rivalry with Manny Pacquiao will be remembered by many in the boxing world, culminating in the fourth encounter when Marquez won by knockout. He was ecstatic to receive the news of his induction. “This is great. I feel very happy and excited to receive this news. I am looking forward to being in Canastota for my induction. I am so happy.”
In Mosley’s 23 year boxing career, he won titles in the lightweight, welterweight, and super welterweight divisions. He scored wins over Oscar De La Hoya, Antonio Margarito, Fernando Vargas, and Ricardo Mayorga. He was considered as one of the best pound-for-pound fighters in the world during his time at lightweight, and was known for fighting the best while at the welterweight and super welterweight divisions.
“I’ve worked my whole life for this,” Mosley said after receiving news of being inducted to the 2020 class. I have accomplished my goals to be one of the greats and go into the Hall of Fame, so this is a great honor.”
Christy Martin is regarded by many as a “pioneer” in women’s professional boxing. Her career spanned 23 years which included a 9 year unbeaten streak and fights against Mia St. John, Holly Holm, and Laila Ali. She won the WBC light middleweight title in 2009. She will be part of the first group of women to be inducted into the Hall of Fame as a boxer.
“I just wanted to be a fighter and fit into the world of boxing and this is a dream come true,” Martin stated in reaction to her announcement. ‘I’m always excited to come back to Canastota but to come back this year will be very special.”
Joining Martin in the inaugural class for women’s boxing is Rijker, who was nicknamed “The Dutch Destroyer”. She finished her eight year career undefeated and stopped all but three of her opponents. As she got word of her induction, she reflected on her time as a boxer.
“There is really a strong connection I have to that era and I am really honored to be reminded of that time because sometimes there is a time in your life where everything comes together – mind, body and spirit – and definitely my boxing career aligned all three of them to be the best I could be on all levels. I’m very grateful for that and grateful to be recognized.”
Edward Brophy, who is the executive director of the IBHOF, made comments after the announcement was made. “We’re extremely excited about the Class of 2020 and are very much looking forward to honoring the newest class of inductees, which includes the first ever female boxers to be enshrined,” Brophy said.