World Boxing Association

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The World Boxing Association (WBA) (Spanish: Asociación Mundial de Boxeo) is a boxing organization that sanctions official matches, and awards the WBA world championship title at the professional level. It was previously known as the National Boxing Association before changing its name in 1962. It is the oldest of the major organizations recognized by IBHOF which sanction world championship boxing bouts, alongside the International Boxing Federation, the World Boxing Council and the World Boxing Organization.



The original sanctioning body of professional boxing, the World Boxing Association can be traced back to the original National Boxing Association, organized in 1921; the first bout recognized by the organization being the Jack Dempsey-Georges Carpentier Heavyweight Championship bout in New Jersey, USA.

The NBA was formed by representatives from thirteen American states to counterbalance the influence the New York State Athletic Commission (NYSAC) wielded in the boxing world. This often meant that the NBA and the NYSAC crowned different world champions in the same division, leading to confusion about who was the real champion.[1]

The International Boxing Research Organization describes the early NBA in this way: "Originally more comparable to the present American Association of Boxing Commissions than to its offspring and successor, the NBA sanctioned title bouts, published lists of outstanding challengers, withdrew titular recognition, but did not attempt to appoint its own title bout officials or otherwise impose its will on championship fights. It also did not conduct purse bids or collect 'sanctioning fees.'"[2]

In 1962 the NBA, with the growth of boxing's popularity worldwide, changed its name to the World Boxing Association. The organization remained mainly American until 1974, however. In that year, two Panamanian boxing figures named Rodrigo Sanchez and Elias Cordova manipulated the WBA rules to give a majority of votes to nations in Latin America.[3]

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