Philly’s Naim Nelson Returns and Remains Unbeaten
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Philly’s Naim Nelson Returns and Remains Unbeaten
By Ken Hissner, Doghouse Boxing (March 11, 2014)

Naim Nelson
Naim Nelson
They say “you have to watch the quiet one”. Well West Philly’s 23 year-old Naim Nelson fills the bill. At 11-0 (1) he returned to action on January 31st after a 10 1/2 month layoff to win a split decision over Christian Steele, 4-8-2, formerly of Staunton, VA, now out of West Philly over 8 rounds at Harrah’s Philadelphia. Steele had defeated Philly’s then unbeaten Lonnie Jackson, Jr., in his most recent fight.

Nelson won the PA lightweight title back in 2012 defeating Victor Vasquez. “Up until then it was the toughest fight I had,” said Nelson. Since then he posted a win over the “Haitian Prince” Osnel Charles, 9-4-1 and Georgian Georgi Kevlishvili, 12-4 in a pair of 8’s.

“In terms of Naim the person/fighter: He is extremely humble, quiet and very respectful. He is an ardent student of the game and a very good tactician. He is a great student to train and an eager learner. As he progresses he’s meeting fighters with different styles and doing what it takes to overcome the challenges they present. He works hard and is a quasi – boxing historian. He is also a warrior. What most people don’t realize is that you will almost have to kill Naim to beat him. He has one of the best attitudes I have ever seen in a fighter. We are very proud of what he has accomplished so far and look forward to a good 2014,” said John Howell, co-manager. In asking Naim about John he said “Great guy. I have even stayed at his house”.

Nelson is under the D&D Management banner of Dave Price and Doc Nowicki. He is managed by Nowicki, Jim Williams and John Howell since June of 2011. “I think he’s (Naim) a nice person. He is very polite and you couldn’t ask for a nicer person. He’s a nice boxer and though he fights at times like a puncher but doesn’t have that much power. Rory has done a good job with him as a trainer,” said Jim Williams, co-manager. “He’s the best cut-man in the business. When I fought Victor Vasquez the cut was so bad and Jim kept me in the fight. He is a nice guy and I cannot think of anything bad about him,” said Nelson. Williams was released as cut man by Doc Nowicki.

Nowicki and Dave Price formed D&D Management which they made Nelson part of though Price is not a manager of record. “Doc is cool. I have no issues with Doc. Dave helps out by locating fights. I’m now training at Mitch Allen’s gym since U. Darby is being renovated,” said Nelson.

Peltz Boxing is his promoter. Nelson has fought 4 times in Atlantic City, NJ, out of his 11 fights. He trains out of the Upper Darby Gym over a fire house just outside of West Philly. His trainer is Rory Bussey with Greg Roberts assisting. Nelson is a 4-time PA Golden Gloves champion and a 2-time Mid-Atlantic champion. His amateur record was 70-7 or 70-10.

“I started at age 13 under Thomas Davis at U. Darby PAL. I didn’t fight for 3 years until Rory (Bussey) joined us. I fought Arturo Trujillio (2011 #152 GG champ) 5 times. We started at #132 then up to #141. He won the first 4 and I the last,” said Nelson.

Naim Nelson is a very likeable soft spoken person and very humble. When he enters the ring he leaves that behind and in spite of only 1 stoppage he comes to rumble. One of the key boxers he spars with is DE’s Omar “Super O” Douglas, 11-0 (9), a super featherweight. “Naim has been a good friend and has helped us prepare for just about all our fights as we have helped him with his. He is very disciplined and sincere about his crafts and is always in fantastic shape,” said Omar Douglas.

This time last year the Philly, DE and NJ area had many lightweights. Since then Tevin Farmer, 15-4-1, winner of his last 8 fights, dropped down to featherweight, while Omar Douglas, 11-0, Frank Santos DeAlba, 11-1-2, Frank Trader, 10-1-1 and Jason Sosa, 11-1-3, dropped down to super featherweight joining Teon Kennedy, 19-2-2, leaving Victor Vasquez, 16-8-1, Ryan Belasco, 18-6-3, and Karl Dargan, 14-0, at lightweight. So you can see the area is full of good boxers from featherweight including Anthony Burgin, 5-0, to lightweight for Nelson’s management to choose from.

Nelson was scheduled to fight the 8 round main event tentatively April 4th at the Valley Forge Casino in King of Prussia which now has to be re-scheduled due to another boxing event on the same day later approved by Executive Director Greg Sirb. Both shows are about 30 minutes from one another and it would hurt both shows attendance running on the same night.

It also happened on January 31st and one of the shows promoters later put back their date due to Sirb’s decision. Also scheduled for Nelson is May 16th at the newly renovated and re-named 2300 Arena in an 8 round bout.

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