By: Sean Crose
“We are excited to bring back our Premiere Tournament to the ‘Mecca of Boxing’,” says Ray Cuadrado, President of USA Boxing Metro on the eve of New York’s biggest amateur competition, “and New York City with a history of featuring action packed boxing cards and future superstars to welcoming crowds of spectators from all walks of life.” Sure enough, this year’s Tournament will be something of a return to form for USA Boxing Metro. Although the competition ran last year, Covid-19 impacted the proceedings. “All the boxing was done outside the city,” Vice President Sonya Lamonakis says. “It was tough, but we made it work.”
This year the Tournament will take place in and around the city itself. This is a far cry from last year, or 2020 when Covid cut the Tournament short. “We opened back up last year, and it’s been good. We did Covid testing in every tournament,” says Lamonakis. “In the beginning it was a little hard to get boxers.” Still, even during the pandemic, fighters ended up competing. “By the time they opened up,” she says, everybody had already been vaccinated.” With that in mind, Boxing Metro is looking forward to this year’s Tournament schedule.
“I would say it’s really our third year,” says Lamonakis. “We just kicked off registration. We have 14 events scheduled at various locations.” Lamonakis goes on to point out there will be “double elimination for the open class.” What’s more, the Tournament will be offering more opportunities for participants this year. “We’re going to offer a novice division for our tournament,” says Lamonakis, “because we don’t want to discourage anyone.” After a rough few years, it appears things are finally going to start running smoothly. “We’re expecting a huge turnout. We have a lot of active members again,” Lamonakis says. “We also have out streaming with Smoker Talk with Ticketlyfe.com. All shows will be streamed.” The price? $9.99, which certainly isn’t bad in a world of expensive pay per views.
Aside from being back in New York, the Tournament will end during one of the city’s biggest weekends. “Our finals will be in June, MSG again,” says Lamonakis. “We usually coincide with the Puerto Rican Day parade.” The Tournament, of course, offers opportunities not only for the contestants but for those who like watching the big names of the future first make their mark in the ring.
†Boxing Insider is pleased to be a sponsor of USA Boxing Metro’s 2022 Tournament