Ten-Count for Brett Lally

By Robert Ecksel on August 30, 2011
Ten-Count for Brett Lally
"Just to get to a world title is something," said Bradd. "Brett climbed that mountaintop.’’


Brett ‘‘The Irish Hawk’’ Lally passed away Tuesday night at Oakwood Hospital in Dearborn, Michigan. He was only 48.

Known for his brawling and aggressive style, he first laced ‘em up at the Livonia Boxing Club and captured the 1980 National Golden Gloves 119-pound title at Detroit’s Cobo Arena as a teenager.

Lally turned professional in 1983 and won his first eight bouts.

In 1989 he hit the big time at Bally’s Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas when he lost on a second-round TKO to highly-regarded Donald Curry. Lally bounced back the next year to score a TKO over Robert “Bam Bam’’ Hines to earn the vacant NABF junior middleweight title.

“That was probably Brett’s biggest accomplishment,” said Bradd Lally, Brett’s older brother, himself a former boxer who took over as Brett’s manager in 1988. “He was a huge underdog in that fight. Just to get to a world title is something. Brett climbed that mountaintop.’’

Lally fought “Terrible” Terry Norris in a WBC light middleweight title bout in 1991. In 1992 he lost the NABF junior middleweight title to Wayne Powell. The contender’s contender got it on with Vinny Pazienza in March 1993, and fought Otis Grant for the NABF middleweight crown five months later.

Lally’s last fight was against Chad Dawson in 2003, and he retired with a record of 32-12 (19 KOs).

“I wouldn’t say Brett was an A-plus fighter by any means,” his brother said, “but he gave people their money’s worth. He was a mean guy in the ring, but outside he’d give you the shirt off his back. Whether you were white, black, Hispanic, everybody loved Brett.’’

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  1. John Wilkinson 01:42am, 04/05/2014

    Remember his TV fight against my chum, John Scully. Scully was undefeated at the time. I watched it with boxer friend ~AL HUNT~ at his home in Meriden, CT.
    A few years later I was up at Worcester, Mass. sitting down inside Jimbo’s Restaurant talking w/ friend Sean Fitzgerald, a protégée at the time (whom I had fought earlier, losing dec. 4)& Sean is telling me this FABULOUS STORY of meeting Brett in HARD FIGHT; Knocking him out in the 5th r. (Not sure if that time, he CAME CLEAN IN END, or not!). Funny he will pick Brett Lally…..but, in New England live-wire scene back then he had fab reputation after handingScully like he did.

  2. dennis crimboli jr 05:16pm, 02/07/2013

    brett was a heck of a guy—he was larger than life—when he would enter the room you knew he was somebody! we are very proud of his accomplishments as a proffessional boxer and a heck of a landscaper!! you will be missed. dennis jr.

  3. Ken Morris 01:57pm, 06/02/2012

    I agree.  Brett was a great guy.  He had more heart than anyone I knew in the ring.  He was my main sparing partner at the Livonia Boxing Club as an amateur.

    Ken Morris

  4. Matt 08:03am, 09/01/2011

    Outside the ring, Brett would give you the shirt of his back if he knew it would help someone.  He was a good guy.

  5. The Thresher 04:12pm, 08/30/2011

    R.I.P. to a good guy.

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