This weekend in Canastota N.Y., some of boxing’s best will have their names cemented in history when they are officially inducted into the International Boxing Hall of Fame (IBHOF). Among this year’s Hall-of-Fame induction class is ESPN.com boxing columnist and ESPN boxing contributor Nigel Collins. Collins joins ESPN Deportes boxing analysts Joe Cortez and Julio Cesar Chavez as well as former ESPN boxing commentator Al Bernstein as HOF inductees.
Collins, who joined ESPN in 2011, is one of the most respected boxing journalists and historians of all time. Prior to ESPN, he served as editor-in-chief of The Ring Magazine. In addition to his ESPN.com responsibilities, Collins contributed to ESPN’s long-standing Friday Night Fights series, providing social media content, insight and analysis. He will continue in the same role when Premier Boxing Champions on ESPN (PBC on ESPN) debuts on Saturday, July 11 (ESPN, 9 p.m. ET).
Front Row caught up with Collins to discuss being inducted into the HOF and more.
How do you feel being inducted into the IBHOF?
It’s wonderful to know your peers think you are worthy of the highest honor that anyone in boxing can achieve. But none of it would have been possible without the boxers. They are the heroes, the ones who take the blows and suffer the consequences. My role has been tangential, an observer who chronicles the deeds of others.
What does it mean to you to be part of ESPN’s extensive boxing coverage?
I love working for ESPN. It has given me an opportunity to broaden my horizons and do things I’ve never done before, such as being the social media person for Friday Night Fights.
What has been your favorite ESPN boxing piece/assignment so far?
I wrote and narrated a brief history of Chicago boxing in August 2013, when Friday Night Fights took place at U.S. Cellular Field, that I thought turned out very well. It’s difficult to pick one column from the many I’ve written, but my aim is usually to examine the human condition through the lens of boxing. When I manage to pull it off, I’m always very pleased.
EDITOR’S NOTE: ESPN’s Brian Campbell also caught up with Collins to discuss his Hall of Fame career.