Norris anything but 'Terrible'

MURRAY GREIG, SUN MEDIA

, Last Updated: 8:34 AM ET

He earned the nickname 'Terrible' for the surgical way he busted up or knocked out the world's best junior middleweights in a 12-year Hall of Fame career that ended more than a decade ago.

But the Terry Norris who whipped the likes of Sugar Ray Leonard, John (The Beast) Mugabi, Donald Curry and Meldrick Taylor during three separate reigns as world champion is more of a pussycat than a predator these days as he crisscrosses the continent in support of disadvantaged youth.

Norris's Terrible T's Youth Boxing Foundation is an extension of the champ's soft spot for the amateur side of the sport. And it's that affinity that has drawn him to Edmonton this week to be part of Friday night's pro-am card at The Palace banquet hall.

"We're thrilled to have Terry coming in for our show and to be able to help him publicize his foundation," said promoter Sheldon Hinton.

"He's going to be at the official weigh-ins at the Beverly Bronx Gym tomorrow (Thursday) night at 6, and he'll be a special guest at the fights on Friday.

"We're inviting every boxing fan in the city to come and meet one of the greatest pound-for-pound junior middleweights of all time."

A star baseball player growing up in Lubbock, Texas, Norris passed up numerous scholarship offers to pursue his boxing career.

After compiling an astounding amateur record of 291-4, he turned pro in 1986 and won the NABF title in just his 21st fight.

In his first crack at the world championship Norris was knocked out by Julian Jackson in 1989, but two years later he claimed the WBC crown by starching the hammer-fisted Mugabi in the first round. That marked the first in a string of victories over some of the division's all-time greats, including Leonard (UD 12), Curry (KO 8) and Taylor (KO 4).

Norris lost his title to Simon Brown in 1993, but regained it by decisioning the slick Jamaican in a rematch the following year. His last reign as world champ began in 1995 when he KO'd Luis Santana for the WBC and IBF crowns before being stopped by Keith Mullings in 1997.

Norris was inducted into the International Boxing Hall of Fame in 2005.

"Terry personifies what every world champion should be -- a guy who genuinely cares about the sport and where it's going," said Hinton.

"His foundation supports community-based organizations and provides alternatives for kids who might be at risk for drifiting into gangs or other bad stuff. That's the same kind of thing we're doing at Beverly Bronx Boxing, so we're really happy to have the opportunity to work with him."

After attending Friday's pro-am card here, Norris is scheduled to appear at an amateur show in Calgary on Saturday.


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