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September 28, 2012     Post-Gazette
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September 28, 2012

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Page16 BOSTON POST-GAZETTE, SEPTEMBER 28, 2012 I ,3 Rocky Marciano Statue Dedication September 23, 2012 at Champions Park Brockton, Massachusetts is a spectacular city, where on September 23, 2012 fight fans gathered to attend the "Rocky Marciano Statue Dedication" at Champions Park in Brockton. On September 23, 1952, Rocky Marciano made his- tory by knocking out World Heavyweight Champion Joe Walcott and claiming the world heavyweight champi- onship. He went on to be- come the only heavyweight to retire undefeated, at 49-0. Now, 60 years to the day, he made history again, as a record-size statue was raised in his honor. It seemed as if all of Brockton was on hand to be a part of the unveiling of this huge statue created by Mexican sculptors Mario Rendon and Victor Gutierrez. Fans filled the stands to pay tribute to the Brockton Blockbuster and see the statue, a $250,000 gift to the city from the World Boxing Council. Peter Marciano. Rocky's younger brother, and Rocky Marciano Jr. also spoke. "This is for all of you, Brockton. You did this, and now Rocky is home where he belongs," said Peter Marciano. Rocky Jr. spoke of the pride he's always felt as the son of the Champ. "Growing up as Rocky Marciano Jr., I always had people telling me what a great father I had, how special my dad was. I've always felt that, but this really shows it -- the love and effort shown by so many people to make this happen. To President Sulaiman, Thank you, Thank you, Thank youl  Some of the attendees to this All-Star event included: Brother Peter Marciano, Rocky Marciano, Jr., Perry Marciano, Steven Marc- iano, Nickalos Marciano, Lou Marciano, Rich Cap- in Brockton, MA piello and Mike "Little Rock" Cappiello. World Champion greats, and stars of the boxing world; Tony DeMarco, Vinnie Paz, Larry Holmes, John Ruiz, Tony Petronelli, Sucra Ray Oliveira, Robbie Simms, Vinnie Marino, Mr. "Only in America" Don King, Hank Tuohy, Paul Doyle, Bob Dudley, Larry Siskind, Denis Marrese, Mike George, John Pires, Attic Dias, City Councilor Todd Petti, Mark D. Petti. Charlie Tartaglia, Hank Tartaglia, Dick Flaherty, Tom Martini, Chris Sarno, and many others. Catozi of this great monu- ment Mario Rendon and victor Gutierrez. (Photos by Rosario Scabin, Ross Photography) and Reinaldo Oliveira, Jr. Hank Tartaglia and Brother Charlie Tartaglia. The great Lou Duva, in attendance. Larry Holmes, World Heavyweight Champion (1978- 1985), legendary boxing promoter Don King, Mayor of Brockton Linda M. Balzotti and World Boxing Council President Jose Sulaiman. Peter Marciano addresses fans and speaks of his beloved brother. Mayor of Ripa Teatine, Italy, Mauro Petrueci (center). It was only the fourth day of fall outside the TD Gar- den on Tuesday. Indeed, it seemed as if the summer of 2012 had gone into overtime, the sunny skies and pleas- antly warm temperatures providing a lure for a lei- surely lunchtime stroll. But inside the Garden it was a different story, for that fourth day of fall was really the first day of winter. It was the day that the Hockey East Association, arguably the best college hockey con- ference in the country, held its annual Media Day at Legends Restaurant. A brief stop at the en- trance, up a couple of flights of stairs, followed by a short escalator ride and we were there -- and the coming months of activity were de- scribed in terms of skaters, goalies, lines, defensemen and penalties. All i0 men's head coaches were there as well as men- tors of several of the women's teams, eager to answer questions about how their squads will fare in the up- coming season. Jerry York, the head coach of the defending national champion Boston College Eagles, spent a good 20 min- utes talking with a small group of media, going into great detail about his team. He looked just fine, like he had just spent a few months in the warm summer sun. But now it was time to retum indoors, to resume his rounds at the rink and to be getting his team ready to defend its national title. Indeed, members of the Hockey East Writers and Broadcasters Association dis- tributed a press release in- dicating that Boston College was the membership's pick to repeat as regular season champion. The Eagles received 21 first place votes out of a pos- sible 25 to far outdistance second place choice UMass- Lowell. Interestingly UML was the runner-up to BC in Hockey East last season. The 29 m season of play in Hockey East will officially open on Saturday, October 6 as Maine hosts Quinnipiac and Merrimack travels to New York State to face Union, an ECAC team. Openers for the three local colleges in Hockey East follow within a week as Northeast- ern hosts Merrimack on October 10, Boston Univer- sity meets Providence at Agganis Arena on October 13 and Boston College travels to Matthews Arena to face Northeastern on October 13 as well. Each team will play 27 games against conference opponents in addition to sev- eral non-conference match- ups scheduled throughout the season. During the course of the season some 56 games will be telecast from October through March with several shown nationally over the NBC Sports Network, the CBS Sports Network and Fox Col- lege Sports. Regional cover- age will be provided by NESN. In addition, Hockey East schools will stream most of their games over the Internet. TV coverage will culminT ate with the Hockey East semifinals and Champion-. ship game. The semis are slated for Friday, March 22 at the Garden followed by the Championship game the next night (March 23) at 7:00 p.m. One of the highlights of media day is the presenta- tion of the media award to a member of the Fourth Estate. This year's recipient was Jim Connelly who works for U.S. College Hockey Online. His main beat is Hockey East, although he also co- writes a national column Tuesday Morning Quarterback and serves as a co-host on USCHO's weekly radio show USCHO Live. A 1996 graduate of UMass-Lowell and pres- ently a resident of Waltham, Connelly began his writing career in 1999. He has cov- ered the NCAA Regionals and the NHL Draft since 1999 and every Frozen Four since 2000. This will be his 15 th season covering college hockey. He becomes the 21 st recipi- ent of the prestigious award, which was renamed in honor of long-time Boston Globe sportswriter Joe Concannon, who died in 1999. Concannon covered the Olympics, road racing, golf, and college hockey, giving almost exclu- sive attention to the college ice game during the winter months. Started in 1992, the award was renamed in his honor in 2001. By ,the way, this year marked the third time that the award has been presented to a writer with Internet af- filiations. Dave Hendrickson of USCHO was the recipient in 2001 while Mike Machnik of Merrimack Radio and USCHO was honored last year. One item that did not generate discussion was the current lockout situation in the NHL. Most people in- volved with Hockey East have friends in the NHL and are not happy to see how things have transpired in the pro ranks. There's no gloating or try- ing to fill the void left by the ongoing lockout. If it per- sists, some fans may choose on their own to take in a few college hockey games, but there won't be an active campaign that focuses on pro hockey fans. If they choose to come to some games, that's fine, but there won't be a campaign that actively recruits them to do so. The annual event ended on time at I:00 pm. There wasn't any overtime on this day. That will be saved for future days as the season progresses. Then it was out the door into a splendid early fall day, knowing full well that the winter game would be fully under way within a fortnight's time.