All in the Family: Boxing ring has been like home to Daleys

By By Warren Arceneaux / American Press

Boxing has been in Daley’s family blood for four generations.

The family, which runs Daley’s Gym on Common Street, recently earned some notoriety when Scott, a retired pro fighter who

now helps dad Phil run the gym, appeared on a Ring magazine list of fighters with most wins who never lost.

Scott ranked ninth on the list with 24 wins – all by knockout. The list is headed by the legendary Rocky Marciano and includes

current fighter Floyd Mayweather and encompasses all weight classes.

“That’s for all weight classes, all the countries, a world list,” Scott said. “Someone Googled me and told me I should look it up. Some of the guys that train here bring me stuff sometimes. When that magazine came

out, we started getting calls from all over. I am honored to be among the boxers on that list.”

Scott takes pride in another streak.

“As proud as I am to be on that list, I am equally proud that in over 300 amateur fights, 24 pro fights and thousands of rounds

of sparring, I have never been knocked down, never been knocked out,” he said.

“I don’t know if you can attribute that to a good equilibrium, a good set of whiskers or whatever. I have never been on my

back and I am proud of that. It means a lot to me because everybody has been down. I have been rocked and I had a standing

8-count before, but never even took a knee.”

Scott grew up in his family’s gyms. He and younger brother Kirk both boxed professionally.

“My grandfather Richard Daley was

boxing coach at Landry (now St. Louis),” he said. “I started at 3. I was

fighting at 55

pounds, my little brother Kirk at 40 pounds. My dad fought in the

Marine Corps. A bunch of different guys trained here. Hector

Camacho, Jr., Alexis Arguello, Thomas Hearns trained at our gym up

in Ragley.”

Scott lost only seven times in his 14-year amateur career.

“Back in those days, we could fight at

three years old, now it is eight,” he said. “I won the Junior Olympics

when I was 13.

I won the state Golden Gloves, Diamond Gloves, Silver Gloves, Gulf

States, any kind of tournament. I went to the USA training

center in Colorado Springs. I came back from that and turned pro

when I turned 18. I was probably 15 when I knew I would turn

pro. I had won Golden Gloves seven times.”

Scott said he kept it simple in the ring.

“I came straight at you,” he said. “My

best punch was a rolling left hook. I could feel it in my hand when it

landed. When

I got the feeling, I could throw my hands up and walk around. Not

too many guys got up from that, less than a handful of times.

If someone did, I know it was going to be a long night. The first

time I felt it was when I was 13. Every fight after that,

I was looking for that feeling.”

Kirk came to the rescue when Scott came closest to losing his streak.

“My most memorable fight was in Des

Moines, Iowa, against a veteran, Anthony Campbell,” Scott said. “We had

decided that Kevin

Rooney, who trained Mike Tyson, would do the talking in the ring

for this fight instead of my father. I was looking for some

strategic feedback from him. He was a great conditioner, but he

had no strategic advice at all in this fight. It was a 10-round fight, I had knocked him down a few times, but he kept

coming. I was looking for Dad in the corner, but he was looking

away so Rooney could do the talking.

“My brother kept my knockout streak

alive. About the sixth round, he hollered ‘Hey man, he is switching on

you.’ Campbell

was going from an orthodox stance to southpaw, and I was not

seeing it. I just knew that I was throwing monster shots that

were landing on nothing. After that I started waiting on him and

started catching him. I knocked him out in the eighth round.”

While living in Las Vegas and Los Angeles during his fighting days, Scott rubbed shoulders with some stars.

“I had the same agent as the guys from 'Star Trek',” he said. “We used to go to parties together. George Takei (who played Sulu)

and Walter Koenig (who played Chekov) are friends of mine.”

After retiring, Scott attended McNeese.

“I got a bachelor’s from McNeese, I was tired of the stereotype — ‘you are just a boxer, a knucklehead.’ I didn’t want to

be just a boxer, so I went to school to prove I wasn’t. I wish I could get all my kids to do that. I should have done that

from the very beginning.”

Scott now cares for his children and helps Phil around the gym.

“I pretty much come around and assist

my dad,” he said. “I like seeing the fast progression. They are like

sponges. I help

out when Dad needs me. I do whatever I can. I found out four years

ago I have Parkinson’s disease, so I can’t get in the ring

any more.”

Scott said he is unsure if the disease was caused by his boxing career.

“Everybody asks me that,” he said. “I don’t know. You have guys like Michael J. Fox who probably has never had a fight in

his life. I don’t know if I am just one of the people who got it. The doctors don’t specify that. They just tell me not to

be in the ring, don’t get hit on, no sparring, they told me to put all that behind me. That was the toughest thing for me,

I can’t get in the ring to help the young guys.”

Scott fathered 12 kids and now has two grandkids. Most have an interest in boxing.

“I never pushed them in that direction,” he said. “It is impossible to keep them away. My oldest is 26, youngest is 2. Even

the 2- and 4-year-olds, if they just hear ‘boxing’ they are putting their guard up. It is incredible, it is like it is

just in them.”

Scott said he is happy with where he is in life.

“With my kids, my family, I feel like I am one of the lucky ones,” he said. “I got that education. Walking across the stage

at Burton Coliseum felt as good as any knockout.”

Warren Arceneaux writes a weekly column on interesting people in Southwest Louisiana each Monday. Have a story idea about

someone in Southwest Louisiana? Call him weekdays at 494-4087. Email him at warceneaux@americanpress.com.