After More Than a Quarter-Century, Pro Boxing Returns to Nashua

Nashua, NH [July 9, 2019] – When the bell rings to signal the start of the first bout on August 16, it will have been 27 years and 78 days since the last time a professional boxing match took place in Nashua.  Boston Boxing Promotions is scheduled to present the first professional card in the city since May 1992. The event, to be held at the gymnasium at Nashua Community College, will be a fundraiser for The Scars Foundation – a charity started by Godsmack frontman Sully Erna.  Erna will be in attendance on August 16.

While it has been more than a quarter-century since Nashua’s last professional boxing event, the city has a rich history when it comes to the “sweet science.”  The first recorded professional bout in Nashua took place in December 1889 when John Descelle (1-0, 1 KO) knocked out Lowell, Massachusetts journeyman Joe Flaherty (10-22-13, 5 KO’s) in a local barn.

Three years later, on Thanksgiving night 1892, a bout at the Nashua Theatre was ruled a no-contest when police intervened.  Such occurrences were common in the prizefighting world in the days before state regulatory bodies.

In April 1895, Nashua would get its first major professional event.  The card featured four bouts and was headlined by legendary Lowell pugilist and trainer Martin Flaherty (29-15-32, 13 KO’s).  Flaherty was one of the most well-known boxers to come out of New England in the 19th century.  By 1895 he had already fought on the national scene, including a bout with world featherweight champion George Dixon (68-30-57, 36 KO’s) in Chicago, Illinois.

During the Roaring Twenties, Nashua experienced the professional boxing boom that took hold in many cities around the country.  Live boxing was a preferred form of entertainment in post-WWI America and crowds were coming out in droves.  Monthly, and at times weekly, cards were presented at the Nashua Theatre, the Franklin Opera House, the Pine Street Arena, and O’Donnell Hall throughout the decade.

Regular cards continued to take place in Nashua into the 1930s and 40s.  By the end of the 40s, however, as national events began to be televised several nights each week from arenas in Chicago, New York City and Los Angeles, the local cards became few and far between for smaller markets like Nashua.  Fans were choosing to stay home and watch the national boxing events for free from the comfort of their living rooms.

Only a handful of pro boxing events took place in Nashua in the second half of the twentieth century.  The May 1992 card, the last to be held in the city, featured a young Edwin Santana (27-5-6, 7 KO’s) in his tenth pro fight.  Santana, fighting out of nearby Lawrence, Massachusetts, was victorious that evening and later went on to challenge Joel Cassamayor (38-6-1, 22 KO’s) for the WBA Super Featherweight Championship of the World on a nationally-broadcast Showtime card.

The event on August 16th will feature a plethora of local fighters.  They will arrive in Nashua and, like the prizefighters over a century earlier, look to build a career in the ring for themselves.  Boston Boxing Promotions has made itself known as the regional promotion  dedicated to helping regional fighters reach the next level of the sport.

“Our goal since starting this promotion in 2013 has always been, first and foremost, to bring the regional boxing scene in New England back to prominence,” said Boston Boxing Promotions President Peter Czymbor.  “Places like Nashua, that had once been hotbeds for professional boxing, can be once again.  The talent is there.  The boxers need a place to showcase their abilities and hone their craft, and that’s what we’re providing them.  We hope the community in and around Nashua will come out to support this event and support the athletes.”

Ryan Dibartolomeo (1-0-1, 1 KO), who trains in Nashua at the Police Athletic League under the guidance of coach Muhammad Brooks will enter the ring for the third time.  In May, he set an all-time record for “fastest knockout” in Boston Boxing Promotions, needing just 18 seconds to down his opponent.  Dibartolomeo previously competed in mixed-martial-arts (MMA), but has transitioned to professional boxing in the past year.   He will take on a fellow MMA-to-pro boxing convert in the form of Cape Cod’s Fernando Perez.  The bout will be Perez’s pro boxing debut.

Chelmsford’s Brandon Higgins returns after a successful pro debut in May.  Also on the card will be Haverhill’s Harry Gigliotti and New Hampshire’s own Jose Medina, as well as Revere’s Kimberly Wabik and Travis Gambardella, among many other local athletes.  Wabik is scheduled to face Wakefield’s Fernanda Araujo who will be making her pro debut.

“Scars for Scars” is an evening of professional boxing to benefit The Scars Foundation, a charity established by Godsmack lead singer Sully Erna to raise awareness of mental health issues and provide resources and tools to educate and empower people on a global level that struggle with burdens such as bullying, addiction, abuse, depression and more. Sully Erna will be in attendance as a special guest that evening.

Tickets for the August 16, 2019 “Scars for Scars” fight night event in Nashua, NH are on sale now at

Boston Boxing Promotions was founded in 2013 and is dedicated to the resurgence of professional boxing at the regional level, particularly in the New England area. Since that time, it has presented professional boxing events in places like Boston, Cape Cod, New Hampshire and New Bedford. To learn more about the promotion, you can follow them on Twitter @BostonProBoxing, join the promotion’s official Facebook page “Boston Boxing Promotions,” and visit the promotion’s website