The Wild Card Boxing Club in Hollywood, California is known more as the home of Manny Pacquiao and Freddie Roach’s stable of World Chamion fighters. What many people don’t know from how this gym is portrayed on HBO’s 24/7 or any other show on which it is featured, is that there are other world class trainers there as well. Chris Strait, of www.convictedartist.com sat down with Eric Brown, to discuss the journey he has taken to from the Motor City to becoming a top-notch boxing trainer at the World’s most famous boxing gym.
CS: How did you get involved in boxing?
EB: I came to it from martial arts. I started doing martial arts in Detroit the early 1970’s, and came to boxing in 1976. I took a break from it in 1985, and started working at GM.
CS: What took you away from boxing?
EB: I had to feed my family, my children were young at the time.
CS: Did you come from a boxing family?
EB: No, I was the only athlete period. I was into music as well, and when I expressed interest, my father introduced me to martial arts. Looking back, I wish he would have gotten me straight into boxing, but it was ok that I did martial arts first.
CS: So, music, boxing, and General Motors… living the full Detroit experience? (laughs)
EB: I guess, yeah. (laughs)
CS: What brought you back?
EB: Well, I started wanting to get back into it, but was already 35 years old at the time, so I decided to give training fighters a try.
CS: How long have you been training fighters?
EB: I started in 1991 in Detroit. I was just helping Bill Miller with his fighters at first.
CS: Like James Toney?
EB: I worked with James primarily, and we brought Bronco McKart up to that area… we had gyms for Jackie Kallen’s fighters in Southfield and Redford, Michigan. The first fight I worked with James for was the Merqui Sosa fight.
CS: What brought you to Los Angeles?
EB: I came out to work with James, and when he started working with Freddie, that started our relationship.
CS: When was that? Almost at the beginning for Freddie?
EB: In 1996. Freddie’s first fighter was Virgil Hill, but I joined him only a few years after that. I moved out here in 1999.
CS: There are fighters like Zachary Wohlman that both you and Freddie work with, but tell us about some of the top fighters for whom you are currently the primary trainer.
EB: Well, you know about Paulie Malignaggi, and I’m also working with “Kid Chocolate” (Peter Quillin), and “Lucky Boy” (Wale Omotoso), David Clark, and I’ve pretty much taken over for Zachary. Both Paulie and Kid Chocolate have big world title fights coming up on Showtime so it is a busy time right now.
CS: Where can fans see you?
EB: I am on Facebook, but other than that, they can always look for me in the corner.
World Champion trainer Eric Brown has two fighters competing on Hollywood Fight Night at the Florentine Gardens card in Hollywood, California on Thursday, September 20, 2012 at 7pm. For tickets and more information, go to www.hollywoodfightnight.com or www.bashboxing.com, or call (626) 388-8888.