• King of the Ring


    Stories, Technical Analysis, Commentary, Fight Predictions, and Evaluations Emphasizing the Finer Points of Boxing
    To arrange for written, audio, or video commentary, to get a quote for a boxing story, or to acquire assistance with a fighter's training, sparring, or corner work,

    contact Mark Connor at: writingboxer@gmail.com or (612) 369-3778

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Emmett Joseph Yanez, great trainer, great man

On Saturday, December 3, 2016, Emmett Joseph Yanez died. He taught me to box when I was 10 years old and was a presence in my life for 37 years. I knew that when he died it would hit me hard, but it hurt a lot more than I expected.…

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About King of the Ring

This page is named for the last man to train me as a boxer, Dennis Presley. He also trained my contemporary, Will Grigsby, who eventually became International Boxing Federation (IBF) World Junior Flyweight Champion twice, and World Boxing Organization (WBO) World Junior Flyweight Champion once. That’s quite an accomplishment, considering…

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White Collar Brawlers guided by Country and Blimp

In early March I visited Gleason’s Gym in Brooklyn, NY to speak with James ‘Country’ Thornwell and Delen ‘Blimp’ Parsley, the world class professional boxing trainers featured in the Esquire Channel’s White Collar Brawlers series. Every episode of the series chronicles two white collar professionals in a friendly office rivalry,…

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Literary Pugilist no longer at rest

Literary Pugilist no longer at rest  (An additional explanation for a writer’s return to the ring) It’s time to publish another update on my return to the ring with further elaboration on why I choose to fight at this time. As I prepare to compete after a 19 year layoff…

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Mike Evgen, Dennis Presley watch Lee-Chavez, Jr. with Boxers and Writers at Ol Mexico

John Pavlik, left, with former IBO Junior Welterweight Champion Mike Evgen, World Class trainer Dennis Presley, and Mark Connor at the Pavlik family’s Ol Mexico restaurant in Roseville, MN.  Copyright 2012, Mark Connor. John Pavlik, left, with former IBO Junior Welterweight Champion Mike Evgen, World Class trainer Dennis Presley, and…

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David Lawerence, the King of White Collar Boxing

David Lawrence relaxes in his office at Gleason’s Gym, Brooklyn, NY. Copyright Mark Connor, 2007 Last June I sat down at Gleason’s Gym in Brooklyn, New York to talk with David “Awesome” Lawrence, the poet, boxing coach and ex-professional boxer who helped start the White Collar Boxing movement, about his…

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Presley and Truax generally correct on Pacquiao – Mosley predictions

[Image.   Hover tag: Caleb Truax is currently training in Las Vegas for his May 27 fight with Andy Kolle at the St. Paul Armory Copyright 2011, Mark Connor] Last night’s fight between Manny “Pac-Man” Pacquiao and “Sugar” Shane Mosley produced few surprises, aside from the unreasonable astonishment experienced by those…

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Winners Never Quit

Jim Glancey, beloved Minnesota Boxing Mentor, Photographer, Coach dies at 83 On Thursday, August 19, I attended the funeral of Jim Glancey, a St. Paul boxing photographer and mentor to youth for over thirty years. Born James Ronald Glancey on February 26, 1927, he died on Saturday, August 7, 2010.…

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St. Paul Boxing figure, Joe Azzone, dies of Heart Attack at 79

Former Secretary of the Minnesota State Boxing Commission, Board Member of International Boxing Federation, and founder of great boxing gym of the past died on July 3 St. Paul Boxing figure, Joe Azzone, dies of Heart Attack at 79.Josep J. Azzone, Sr., a St. Paul native who was an integral…

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Boxers and Writers Reports on former contender Olajide, Jr. and Aerospace Boxing Fitness Gym

Former Middleweight Contender Michael Olajide, Jr., right, poses with Mark Connor. In late February I traveled to New York City on business for the National Writers Union/UAW Local 1981 (www.nwu.org). Because there are so many opportunities in both the literary and the pugilistic worlds in New York, the city the…

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