Lance Pugmire Is The BWAA's 50th Nat Fleischer Award Winner
The Boxing Writers Association of America would like to proudly announce that Lance Pugmire is the 50th recipient of the Nat Fleischer Award for Excellence in Boxing Journalism that was first presented by the Boxing Writers Association of America in 1972.
A 30-year newspaperman who grew up reading daily dispatches by prior Fleischer winners Norm Frauenheim in Phoenix and Jim Murray and Mark Whicker in Southern California, Pugmire kept the sport alive on the printed page during a near-20-year career at the Los Angeles Times, following that with stints at The Athletic and USA TODAY Sports.
After covering Shane Mosley fights for The Times’ satellite office east of Los Angeles and then contributing to The Times’ Pulitzer Prize-winning coverage of massive wildfires in 2003, Pugmire inherited the boxing beat from Fleischer winner Steve Springer in 2007, taking press row in his new role for the first time to cover the first of the epic Israel Vazquez-Rafael Marquez series, moving on to his first pay-per-view with Floyd Mayweather Jr.’s seminal triumph over Oscar De La Hoya.
Covering the fertile boxing ground of Southern California placed Pugmire close to the sport’s top newsmakers and its biggest fights. Manny Pacquiao’s rise to global stardom, Canelo Alvarez’s U.S. debut, the drumbeat for Mayweather and Pacquiao to fight and a slew of classic bouts at the “War Grounds” in Carson were among the compelling storylines, along with Andy Ruiz Jr.’s heavyweight-title upset of Anthony Joshua after Pugmire’s reporting swayed editors to sign off on the expense of Joshua’s BWAA fight of the year against Wladimir Klitschko at Wembley Stadium two years earlier.
At The Athletic, Pugmire produced back-to-back BWAA first-place longform pieces on heavyweight champion Deontay Wilder and promoter Kathy Duva while detailing the career and life of powerful manager Al Haymon’s first fighter, Vernon Forrest.
Pugmire, 55, resides in Upland, Calif., with his sons, Tyler and Nathan, and his daughter, Katie Ruzich, gave birth in December to his first grandchild, Bella.
Pugmire will be honored along with ESPN's Mark Kriegel, The BWAA's 49th Nat Fleischer Award Winner, at the BWAA 97th & 98th Annual Awards Dinner on Thursday, June 8, 2023, at the Edison Rooftop.