Contact NYSAC:

Tom Hoover, Chairman
David Berlin, Executive Director

New York State Athletic Commission
123 William Street, 2nd Floor
New York, NY 10038

E-mail the Athletic Commission
Telephone: (212) 417-5700
Fax: (212) 417-4987

Deaf, hard of hearing and speech-disabled callers, please use 7-1-1

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2015 New York State Athletic Commission Licensees

Special Notice

*   *   *   S P E C I A L   N O T I C E   *   *   *

The New York State Athletic Commission will hold testing for Seconds, Managers, and Matchmaker licenses at
10:00 am at 123 William Street, 2nd Floor, New York, NY on the following date:

Monday, September 14, 2015 Monday, November 9, 2015
Tuesday October 13, 2015 Monday, December 14, 2015

These are BY APPOINTMENT ONLY. To schedule an appointment, call 212-417-5692 or email

*2015 Licensing Period lasts from October 1st, 2014 through September 30th, 2015.
*2016 Licensing Period lasts from October 1st, 2015 through September 30th, 2016.

NYSAC Congratulates Keisher McLeod Wells

The New York State Athletic Commission would like to congratulate Keisher “Fire” McLeod Wells on winning the New York State Female Flyweight Championship on May 30, 2015 at the Resorts World Casino in Jamaica, Queens. McLeod Wells, who hails from Brooklyn, NY, scored a unanimous decision over Patricia Alcivar to claim the vacant title. Her professional record stands at eight wins and two losses.

Action Shots from Barclays Center, June 6, 2015

Action Shots from Madison Square Garden, April 25, 2015

An Open Letter from David Berlin, Executive Director, New York State Athletic Commission

May 1, 2015

To The Boxing Community,

David Berlin, Executive Director, New York State Athletic CommissionToday marks my one-year anniversary at the New York State Athletic Commission.  It has been a productive year for the Commission and a year that has witnessed the growth of professional boxing in New York. 

New York is looking to have its busiest year in decades in 2015.  Already, there have been 17 boxing cards in New York State, small and large, downstate and upstate.  Madison Square Garden, the world’s most famous boxing venue and the one most closely tied to boxing’s rich history, and the Barclays Center, one of the top modern venues for the sport, are each looking to host several important boxing events during the year, events that bring the energy and excitement of big-time boxing to New York.

Behind the scenes and out of the spotlight – a spotlight that rightfully belongs only to the men and women who climb into the ring to fight – the Commission has been hard at work.  The Commission’s core functions are to regulate the sport, to oversee boxing events, and to make certain that medical and safety precautions are in place to protect the health of fighters.  We have developed, and continue to develop, a competent and professional staff to undertake these functions.  In the past year we have built a small but efficient office staff to handle the daily work of the Commission and we have added substantially to our event-day staff.  Inspectors received a pay increase for the first time in 25 years, putting their compensation in line with the high demands of the job; they are our eyes and ears in the dressing rooms and in the corners, making sure that regulations are followed, that the fighters are clean and that the sport is conducted in a fair and safe manner.  In addition, several workshops were held for inspectors, and clear protocols were developed for both inspectors and ringside physicians.  These protocols ensure that the Commission is consistent in its practices so that boxers and their teams will know what to expect when they come to New York to fight.

What the boxers and their teams can expect in New York is a transparency and consistency that ensures that the sport is run in an open, honest and fair manner.  Toward that end, we have worked to make sure that the Commission website provides up-to-date information to the public, including a calendar of upcoming boxing shows, all forms that boxers and their teams require in New York, bulletins describing current Commission practices, and New York’s boxing rules.  In addition, a Boxer Information Sheet is provided to boxers and their teams at weigh-ins so that they have easy access to New York’s basic rules and practices and will know what to expect on fight night. 

With the boxer as our focal point, we have developed a new Bout Contract that uses clear, straightforward language to describe the agreement between boxer and promoter, and that puts boxers on notice of what, if any, deductions will be made from the fighter’s purse.  This allows boxers to know, at the time a contract is signed, exactly what they can expect to earn for the fight, and it avoids the misunderstandings that stem naturally from finding out only after a fight is complete that money is being deducted.  In a departure from past practice, we have also worked with promoters to conduct weigh-ins at or near the venue where the event will be taking place in order to save boxers from the burden of traveling to the Commission and allow them time to rest for the next day’s fight.

All of our new practices are developed with the fighter in mind, and there is nothing more important than making sure that the boxer who earns the victory in the ring has his or her hand raised at the end of the fight.  That means having qualified, competent officials in place who will exercise proper judgment.  We have held referee and judge seminars in order to make sure that our officials are following consistent standards.  These seminars also give referees and judges an opportunity to share ideas and to compare approaches toward sometimes difficult situations; in this way, they are prepared for the many scenarios that may arise in the ring.  In addition to seminars, I have frequent conversations with individual judges and referees to discuss their work in a particular fight as I believe that open and constructive dialog gives all of us a chance to grow as professionals.

Other new practices also serve our goals of clarity, transparency and fairness:

  • We have put in place a selection process for referees and judges in world title fights that gives the boxer and his or her team a voice in who is selected.

  • We have created a clear set of criteria defining who is eligible to fight for the New York State Championship title, criteria that are in keeping with the significance of the title.

  • We have changed the boxer license application to provide for the possibility of drug testing at any time during the licensure period and not only on the night of a fight.

  • We have developed a clear and consistent process for weigh-ins that makes the official scale available to the boxers prior to the official weigh-in but provides just one chance for boxers in non-title fights to step on the scale at the official weigh-in.  In title fights, boxers who weigh in heavy are given two hours to make weight.

  • We have required that promoters provide the same brand and model of gloves to both boxers in a bout.  If a boxer wants to wear a different brand or model, then the boxer or his team must supply two pairs of the gloves (or four in a title bout) so that the other boxer will have the option of wearing either the gloves provided by the promoter or the same gloves that his or her opponent is wearing.

  • We encourage the boxer’s trainer to have a representative watch the opponent wrap and glove up prior to a bout. 

In addition to our efforts to create a professional environment that protects boxers and advances the integrity of the sport, I am particularly proud of our program to promote boxer health through the NYSAC Health Insurance Initiative.  Through a series of open houses at the Commission, at boxing gyms and at weigh-ins, the Commission has arranged for boxers to receive one-on-one assistance in enrolling in health insurance plans through the New York State of Health Marketplace.  Our success is measured in the number of enrollees.  Sixty-nine boxers and other boxing people who did not previously have health coverage (and 90 individuals in total when family members are included) are now enrolled in health insurance plans.  Boxers who are injured in the gym can now go to a doctor and know that they will be covered, and they can maintain their good health by going for an annual check-up.

There is, of course, much work to be done, work that includes updating and modernizing New York’s boxing rules to bring them in line with current accepted practices in boxing.  Toward that end, New York has abolished the three-knockdown rule, properly leaving the appropriate moment of a stoppage to the judgment of qualified referees.  Continued work on New York’s rules is a project that we plan to move forward on in the coming year. 
Just as we will work on the rules to bring them in line, where appropriate, with other jurisdictions, New York is committed to working with our fellow Commissions in order to bring uniformity to the sport in many other areas.  This shared goal of bringing uniformity to the sport will help to ensure the long term health of boxing and will benefit the boxers who will be able to compete according to the same rules and practices wherever they ply their trade.

We have made great progress in the past year but of course the work continues.  I look forward to the challenges ahead as we do our part to make sure that boxers are protected, that the integrity of the sport is maintained, and that boxing continues to thrive in New York State.

David Berlin
Executive Director

Injury Awareness

CONCUSSION: Let's Knock Out Brain Injuries in Boxing!

DEHYDRATION: Stay Hydrated and Avoid Injury Inside and Outside The Ring

Approved Gloves

See what brands, models and weights of boxing gloves are currently approved by the New York State Athletic Commission.

September in New York State
Boxing History

On September 8, 1897, at The Alhambra in Syracuse, NY, Tommy Ryan, who was born in Redwood, NY, fought to a NO Contest against Charles (Kid) McCoy in a middleweight bout. No contests were not unusual for the era, but this one was one of the strangest occurrences in the squared circle in the State of New York at the time. The Syracuse Evening News reported that Ryan, although at his best at 145lbs, surprisingly agreed to enter the ring at 154lbs with McCoy, who came in at 158lbs. Politics and police interference saw the fight halted during the fifth round with neither man badly hurt, despite Ryan suffering damage to his left eye. Press reports stated that it was rumoured prior to the fight that the police would enforce a stoppage in the fifth or sixth rounds, but that could not be substantiated. When asked why he stopped the fight, Police Inspector O’Brien said that he had seen Ryan beginning to land heavy blows to McCoy’s kidney region and felt that those punches were unacceptable. Referee George Siler said there was no reason for the police to have intervened in the bout. It was generally thought that Ryan was ahead at the time of the stoppage and would have gone on to win.

On September 17, 1950, at New York’s Yankee Stadium, Ezzard Charles retained his World Heavyweight title with a fifteen-round unanimous decision over former world champion and one of the greatest heavyweights ever, the Brown Bomber Joe Louis. Although Charles was officially the World Heavyweight champion at the time (he had held the title since June 21, 1949) of this defense, many boxing fans still viewed Louis, for sentimental reasons, as the real world Heavyweight champion. Charles was recognized universally after defeating Louis. Charles finished his career with 93 Wins (52 Knockouts), 25 Defeats (7 knockouts), and 1 Draw.

On September 18, 2001, two-time former World Featherweight Champion Sandy Saddler and best known for his four-bout series with Willie Pep, passed away at a nursing home in New York State. Although born in Boston, Saddler fought over 45 times in the Empire State during his career, including in Buffalo, Long Beach, Schenectady and New York City. He finished with a career record of 144 wins (103 by KO), 16 losses and two draws.

On September 21, 1955, at Yankee Stadium in The Bronx, World heavyweight Champion Rocky Marciano came off the canvas to score a ninth round knockout of Moore, the Light Heavyweight Champion who had moved up in weight. This marked the final bout in Marciano’s career and to this day he remains the only Heavyweight Champion to retire undefeated, finishing at 49-0.

On September 27, 1956,undisputed Middleweight Champion Tony Zale defended his title against New York’s own Rocky Graziano at Yankee Stadium in the first of their three fights, one of the more sensational trilogies in boxing history. This bout, widely regarded as the Fight of the Year in 1946 by many boxing aficionados, ended when Zale knocked out Graziano in the sixth round. In the third round, Graziano sent Zale through the ropes. Later, on the verge of defeat and ready to collapse, Zale managed to drop Graziano with a body shot. Then in the sixth round Zale caught Graziano with a left hook that dropped him hard to the canvas; this time Rocky wasn’t able to cover from the punch in time to beat the count and Tony Zale retained the title.

On September 29, 2001, Bernard “The Executioner” Hopkins squared off against Felix Trinidad at Madison Square Garden in a matchup that caught the world’s eyes for many reasons. First, the fight would crown the first undisputed middleweight champion since Marvelous Marvin Hagler in 1987, as both Hopkins and Trinidad held respective middleweight titles, so the hype had been explosive from the time the bout was first announced. The fight, originally scheduled for Sept. 15, 2001, was the most anticipated event of the boxing year, and due to Hopkins’ taunts and derisive actions against the younger Trinidad, tension was high as fight week began. And then, on the morning of Sept. 11, everything changed as New York City suffered the worst terrorist attack in its history. Suddenly, sports were an afterthought. But as New York and the nation attempted to get back to normal, or at least a semblance thereof, the fight was rescheduled for two weeks later for the 29th, and by the time it got under way, the tension generated by the bout's promotion and the events of the previous two weeks was palpable. In the ring, the old master Hopkins dominated, before finally dropping Trinidad midway through the 12th, at which point the Puerto Rican's father-trainer Felix Sr. entered the ring to stop the fight. Hopkins is still active and his record stands at 53 Wins (32 Knockouts), 6 Defeats (0 knockouts), and 2 Draws.

More Boxing History