Tom Sorensen

Best female boxer of her time promoting ‘statement’ card in Charlotte

When boxing comes to Charlotte, some of us embrace it. It’s coming on Saturday.
When boxing comes to Charlotte, some of us embrace it. It’s coming on Saturday. WWW.MICZEKPHOTO.COM

We don’t get much boxing in Charlotte. But when it comes, some of us embrace it. NODA’s CenterStage will accommodate only 620 fans on Saturday, and all the tickets have been sold. Doors open at 6 p.m., and fights start at 7.

Pink Promotions will put on the fight. Pink Promotions is Christy Salters. When she boxed, she was Christy Martin, the most popular women’s boxer anywhere as well as the most successful. Don King signed her.

Salters lives in Charlotte, and is a substitute teacher at Vance High. I remember her in the ring. She was ferocious. A West Virginia native, she was the Coalminers Daughter. An opponent never had to guess where she’d be. She was coming forward and, as her nickname suggests, digging in.

When I met Salters last week at Central Coffee, I didn’t recognize her. Her hair is lighter and she’s only 5-4. Also, she was supposed to wear pink. As a boxer, she always did.

At 48, Salters is never going to fight again. But her passion for the sport has not left her.

Pink Promotions promoted a card, with Pretty Girl Promotions, on Oct. 19 at Grady Cole Center. The crowd was small but the fights were great. Salters would like to help turn Charlotte into a fight town, and she gets excited as she talks about the possibilities.

I don’t know if Salters can do that. But I hope she does. A crowd of 620 wouldn’t mean much to most sports. But that is an excellent turnout for Charlotte boxing.

“It’s a statement,” Salters says.

Tom Sorensen is a retired Charlotte Observer columnist. Sign up for his newsletter, and follow him on Twitter: @tomsorensen

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