The Battle of the Badges Gets Set To Rumble As NYPD, FDNY Lace Up Gloves For Bout at MSG

NY Daily News - October 07, 2009

by Lisa Colangelo

The Battle of the Badges returns to Madison Square Garden on Friday night, and some major bragging rights are on the line for the Fire and Police departments' boxing teams.

This is the 27th year FDNY and NYPD boxing teams have faced off - and there is a special tie-breaking twist.

Each team has 13 wins under its belt.

"It's going to be a great night of boxing," said Bobby McGuire, a retired firefighter who is the head coach and president of the FDNY Bravest Boxing Team. "It's very fitting to have the tiebreaker at the mecca of boxing."

For the first time since 1986, the matches will be held at the Garden - in the WaMu Theater, to be exact.

Proceeds from ticket sales will help fund two worthy causes: a youth boxing program at Flatlands Gardens in Brooklyn called "Firefighters, Cops N Kids," as well as the Wounded Warriors Project.

The youth program will provide a safe haven for kids five days a week from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m.

"Boxing teaches them self respect, especially for their own bodies," said McGuire, a 22-year FDNY veteran who worked at Ladder 143 and Ladder 173 in Queens before retiring in 2002. "It keeps them in the gym and keeps them off the streets."

McGuire said Friday's event is not just for police officers and firefighters but for all boxing fans.

"These guys trained long and hard on their own time," he said. "There will be some excellent competition."

Doors open at 7 p.m. and the first bout is scheduled to start at 8 p.m. Ticket prices range from $30 to $65. For more information and ticket sales go to www.wamuatmsg.com