Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
In the 1970s, he opened his highly-popular Joe Diaz Top Level Boxing gym in Phoenix. The gym has proven to be a popular training and hang-out center for famous boxers, and Salvador Sanchez trained there in 1980 before defeating Danny Lopez for the world's Featherweight title.
Joe Diaz had a feud with Dodge Theater boxing director Tom Gaffney ; this feud made headlines in Phoenix. Diaz sent Mary Rose Wilcox , an important political figure in Arizona, a letter explaining his concerns about Gaffney operating as director of boxing at the theater. As it turns out, Gaffney had faced trouble with other state boxing commissions before, and he had no license to perform as boxing director of any venue in Arizona. Gaffney's license to be a boxing director had been revocked in two other states before. Diaz says that Gaffney never paid two of Diaz's fighters their full purses after fights at the Dodge theater.
Diaz has trained many world champions at his gym, including Sanchez, Yori Boy Campas, Jorge Castro, Mia St. John, Vassiliy Jirov and a number of others. Other notables who have trained there include Hector Camacho Jr., Zora Folley and Jesus Gonzales.
On January 14, he and some of his boxers staged a rally in front of the Arizona State athletic commision. Diaz told "The Arizona Republic" that he plans to do so every other friday, until their fighters become famous and self-managed boxers.
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