Burton Steps Back Into the Boxing Ring

By Beacon Staff

Five years to the day after she fought Laila Ali in Madison Square Garden in New York City, Shelley Burton is back in the boxing ring in Kalispell.

The famous former professional boxer has started a new gym in her hometown and will step into the ring for the first time since she took on Ali for the WBC and WIBF Super Middleweight belts in 2006.

Burton has organized an event for Nov. 11 at the fairgrounds with six fights scheduled. Doors open at 7 p.m. and fights start at 8 p.m. inside the Expo Building at the fairgrounds. Burton hopes to make Friday night fights a regular occasion.

“I want to get people excited about boxing,” Burton said. “I want to give back to the community. They gave to me when I was trying to become professional. I needed help to do it. The whole county, everybody pitched in and helped. That’s what I’m trying to do now.”

The current fight card features five men fights and a main event bout between Burton and six-year pro DJ Morrison, who has fought Burton in the past. Morrison could win $1,000 with a win. Win or lose, Burton will donate $700 to the local food bank. Burton is asking attendees to bring a can of food for the local food bank.

A press conference gathering is at the Scoreboard Pub on Nov. 8 at 8 p.m. For more information, call 871-4131.

Burton has a storied career that took her across the country fighting professionally for years. Her success culminated in 2006 when she fought Muhammad Ali’s daughter Laila. Ali TKO’d Burton in the fourth round and Burton retired afterward with an 8-3-1 (2 KO’s) professional record.

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