Pensacola’s Roy Jones Jr. paved his own way to Boxing Hall of Fame

FILE - World Boxing Commission light heavyweight champion Roy Jones, Jr. holds onto two belts after winning a unification bout with World Boxing Association light heavyweight champion Lou Del Valle at Madison Square Garden in New York, Saturday, July 18, 1998. Jones won a clear-cut unanimous 12-round decision. Roy Jones Jr. was inducted into the Boxing Hall of Fame in Canastota, N.Y., on Sunday, June 12, 2022.

Roy Jones Jr. was set on doing it his way 33 years ago when entering the professional boxing world.

His way landed him on boxing’s pantheon.

One of Pensacola’s greatest athletes, among the most revered in his sport, Jones, 53, received the highest honor Sunday when he was inducted into the International Boxing Hall of Fame in Canastota, New York.

He is part of a nine-member 2022 class which includes James Toney, also 53, who Jones defeated in 1994 – a 12-round unanimous decision for a super middleweight title.

The Hall of Fame ceremony Sunday, which ends a four-day set of events at this venue, is billed as a “Trilogy,” since it will also enshrine classes from 2020 and 2021 – events cancelled by the ongoing coronavirus.

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