Two of boxing's biggest stars of the 1990s are going into the Boxing Hall of Fame. It was no surprise that Mike Tyson and Julio Cesar Chavez, who combined for 157 wins, got the nod. Tyson was the undisputed heavyweight champ while Chavez was a title winner in three divisions.
The day's shocker, though, was that the name Sylvester Stallone appeared alongside the boxing legends.
That's right, Stallone is going into the BHOF for his contributions to the sport through film. Stallone gained worldwide fame between 1976-2006, playing the fictional character "Rocky Balboa" in six movies.
Some critics like Larry Brown Sports are upset over Stallone's inclusion:
Stallone is an actor. He played a boxer in a fictitious movie. Sure, he played in a series of movies, and they were great, but none of it was actually real. Itís an insult to guys like Tyson, Chavez, and [Kostya] Tsyzu who all actually were beat up on the ring and administered beatings, that someone who did nothing gets in.
Meanwhile, Entertainment Weekly's Jeff Labrecque called Stallone's Oscar-winning movie "Rocky" and the lead character "great ambassadors for the sport."
I have to ask, What took them so long? Rocky Balboa has been an American hero since he went the distance with Apollo Creed in 1976; he went on to win the Cold War in 1985 when he chopped down the big Russian, Ivan Drago. Do you really think the stogie-wielding Boxing Writers Association of America voters were on the fence about Stallone until the fifth Rocky sequel pushed him over the top?
Inductees were voted on by members of the Boxing Writers Association of America.
Also going into the Hall, which is located in Canastota, N.Y., are Tszyu, trainer Ignacio "Nacho" Berastain and referee Joe Cortez.