Once upon a time, Nicky Booth was one of the best prospects in British boxing. The most talented of two Nottingham boxing brothers who both won British titles, Nicky’s career was almost over when it started and lost to drug addiction. Now, at the age of only 40, Booth is dead.
The story of Nicky Booth is without a doubt tragic. Two decades ago, Booth and big brother Jason were regular headliners at Sky Sports, on bills promoted by Matchroom in the days before Eddie Hearn took over and after his father Barry lost enthusiasm for the sport. Saturday night from the Harvey Hadden Leisure Center was a staple. Jason was the one with the right mindset, Nicky was the one they said had all natural abilities.
He was good enough that he won bantamweight titles in the UK and Commonwealth when he was just 20 years old and defeated Tommy Waite in Liverpool. He would hold the title for the rest of his career.
He had 23 professional fights, won 17th, lost five, and drew one. He boxed for the IBO bantamweight title in 2001 and was stopped in nine rounds by Jose Sanjuanelo at the Wembley Conference Center. He lost his Commonwealth title to Steve Molitor (who later defeated Jason in the fight for the IBF super bantamweight title), but in his last fight in 2009 he lost to Nathan Sting for the WBU title, which was a shadow of a saw him earlier selves.
This career ended at the age of 24 when he was sentenced to two years in prison for burglary and theft. By then, his abilities were already beginning to wane and he was admitting problems with crack cocaine. The fight against drugs was something he would fight for the rest of his life.
Jason had his fights against alcohol too. His impressive career, however, lasted until 2016 when he won British flyweight and super bantamweight titles as well as an IBO super flyweight title and his brother’s old Commonwealth bantamweight belt.
When Booth first got out of jail, he was he is still a young man. There was talk of a comeback, he talked about bringing his life back together. Nicky was often present at Jason’s fights, but the comeback conversation faded.
Over the decade after he fought. In 2017 he was in court for beating a security guard in the supermarket who caught him stealing four cans of coffee. Although he was only 37 years old, his defense attorney Chris Saunders painted a painful picture of the former boxer for magistrates. « He seems like a frail character these days, » he said. « You can see he’s having trouble getting his words right.
» You saw him almost shuffle when he comes to court. He hasn’t had any problems in ten years and the problem is class A drugs. When I spoke to him, he said, « I need help. » At the moment he has various diseases. His immune system is currently attacking his antibodies. «
His best win was probably his first defense of his British and Commonwealth titles against Ady Lewis in 2001, when Nicky and Jason came out on top together for the first time at the Harvey Hadden Center. It was exciting while it lasted when the smaller Lewis, the former champion, took the fight to the bigger, smoother stance. But Booth ended up crucially in seventh with a vicious left hook on his body. Tonight would be the best way to remember him.
Ron Lewis is a senior writer for the boxing scene. He was a boxing correspondent for The Times, where he worked for four Olympics and numerous world title fights around the world from 2001 to 2019. Since the 1980s he has written for a variety of Publications around the world on boxing.
[QUOTE = The D3vil; 21016429] Man, how many people are still smoking crack at this late stage?
I mean, how has anyone looked at crack since 1991 and said, « Well, that’s a good idea » [/ QUOTE]
Unfortunately, there are many worse options …
Imagine you have Lawrence Taylor, Dwight Gooden, Darryl Strawberry and Bobby Brown as your clients. You could only get rich from them. If you toss Oscar « Fishnet / Fish Scales » Delahoya you are eating really well
man, how do so many people smoke crack at this late stage?
I mean, how has anyone seen crack since 1991 and said, « Well, that’s a good idea. »