Former Times Sports Editor Bill Dwyre wins top boxing writing honor – Los Angeles Times
Longtime former Times Sports Editor Bill Dwyre, who later turned to column writing with a knack for superb boxing coverage, won the prestigious Boxing Writers’ Assn. of America Nat Fleischer Award, which recognizes career excellence.
Dwyre is scheduled to receive his award March 16 at the BWAA dinner in New York.
Dwyre, a former national editor of the year honoree by the National Press Club who oversaw The Times’ 24 special sections averaging 45 pages during the 1984 Summer Games in Los Angeles, was selected for the BWAA award in a vote exclusively among past Fleischer winners, including former Times boxing writer Steve Springer.
“This means a lot to me, because my career was chopped into two parts, one as an editor for so long, and now it’s nice to be recognized for the writing side,” said Dwyre, who retired from The Times in 2015. “I’ve had a great career, but I’m probably more proud of the things that I did as a writer.”
He told the BWAA, “I began getting interested in his success and got up from behind my desk and went to the De La Hoya-Felix Trinidad fight [in September 1999]. I remember that well. I was outraged by the decision. I decided that the Monday after the fight, I coerced Oscar to come to one of those swanky Times offices and we sat down and replayed the tape of the fight. I think the whole staff filled the room.
“We felt Oscar won the fight. The tape showed it. From that point on, I felt compelled to cover more boxing. I always liked the fact that there was a lot of honesty in the fighters.
“The first time I was truly introduced to boxing live was when I was here probably a month as a young sports editor. Every promotional guy in town was trying to get my ear, and I remember John Beyrooty [the BWAA’s 2016 Good Guy award winner] got my attention and convinced me to go the fabled Olympic [Auditorium] to watch a fight.
“It was great. It was a decision the crowd didn’t like, and bottles went flying everywhere. Someone grabbed me and pulled me in the back to avoid being hit, but I’ll always remember the passion of the crowd.”
After capturing that passion so eloquently for years, Dwyre now steps deservedly into more hallowed journalism ground.
The BWAA also announced Friday other winners:
Fighter of the year: Carl Frampton.
Fight of the year: Francisco Vargas-Orlando Salido, June 4 at StubHub Center.
Trainer of the year: Shane McGuigan.
Manager of the year: Egis Klimas.
Sam Taub Broadcasting Award: Showtime’s Gordon Hall of “ShoBox” fame.
Bill Crawford Award for courage in overcoming adversity: Top Rank publicist Lee Samuels, whose son, Eddie, died unexpectedly of a heart attack.
Barney Nagler Award for long and meritorious service: Golden Boy Promotions publicist Bill Caplan.
Marvin Kohn Good Guy Award: Boxing publicist and former Los Angeles Herald Examiner sports writer John Beyrooty.
Follow Lance Pugmire on Twitter @latimespugmire