The ballots have all been counted. The 2008 award winners as determined by the members of the “Boxing Writers Association of America” are as follows:
For the second time, Manny Pacquiao has been voted the BWAA's Edward J. Neil award for “Fighter of the Year.” Pacquiao also won it in 2006.
Joining Pacquiao in the winner's circle is his trainer Freddie Roach, who took home the Futch-Condon award for “Trainer of the Year.” Roach previously won this award in both 2003 and 2006.
Joe Calzaghe was runner-up to Pacquiao in “Fighter of the Year” honors, but did not end up empty-handed. The Welshman who retired undefeated earlier this year won the Al Buck award for “Manager of the Year.” Calzaghe's victory is not without precedent. Two other self-managed world champions have had this honor bestowed upon them: George Foreman in 1994 and Bernard Hopkins in 2004.
ShoBox commentator Steve Farhood won the prestigious Walker Award for “Long and Meritorious Service.” For Farhood this is the second major award he has won. In 2002 he was voted the Sam Taub Award for “Excellence in Broadcast Journalism.”
This year's Taub recipient is HBO's Harold Lederman. Lederman, known as boxing's unofficial judge, was a 2005 award winner in the “Good Guy” category.
The “Good Guy” Award, named after Marvin Kohn, will be bestowed upon Alan Hopper of Don King Productions.
The closest race was for the Crawford Award, awarded for “perseverance in overcoming adversity.” It was a tie between world renowned journalist George Kimball and former world champion Genaro Hernandez. Both will be honored.
The “Fight of the Year” was the rubber-match barnburner between Israel Vazquez and Raul Marquez. It was 12 rounds of sustained fury in which Vazquez won a close decision.
Various writing awards will make up the rest of the program. The 84th Boxing Writers Association of America's annual awards dinner will be held June 12, 2009 at the Capitale located at 130 Bowery, New York City, N.Y. Additional information such as price and hotel availability, will be made known in the coming weeks. Remember to check the bwaa.org on the Web for the latest BWAA announcements and updates.
Jack Hirsch, BWAA President