Best Boxer

Alex Love

Seattle certainly has its share of big-city problems. But the punishing childhood factors that often produce great pugilists-poverty, parental abandonment, and then a little more poverty- are harder to find here than in, say, Depression-era Detroit (Sugar Ray Robinson) or a Brooklyn housing project (Mike Tyson). Alex Love didn't grow up poor, hungry, or desperate for a father figure. What the 5-foot-1, 21-year-old did become, however, is Seattle's best boxer, and potentially the world's first female gold-medal winner. (The 2012 Summer Olympics in London will be the first to recognize women's boxing as a sport.) Love, a 112-pound flyweight from Monroe, took up the sweet science as a high-school sophomore in an effort to be a better point guard. Basketball may have won her heart first, but boxing won the battle-and has now given her an opportunity to make history. CALEB HANNAN

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