Ted Whitfield began boxing at a Buffalo Police Athletic League gym at the age of 13 because as he put it, “all the kids in my neighborhood were doing it.” The Bennett High School graduate would win two Buffalo Golden Glove titles in the early 1960s before he re-located to Massachusetts. There he would win 2 more Golden Glove titles before he joined the army. Ted’s amateur record was 122-3 with 90 of those bouts coming while serving in the armed forces. He was the All-Army 118-pound champion in 1962 and won the All-Army 126-pound title the following year. Teddy won his last 15 amateur fights by knockout and he would carry that streak into his professional career, which started in 1964. Whitfield won his first six professional fights and eight of his first nine by the knockout route. Teddy was 13-0 when he met the 8th rated welterweight in the world, Gaspar Ortega, who had 131 wins going into the fight. Ted won an easy 10-round decision to dent the top ten rankings, reaching as high as third in the world. For his impressive start he was chosen the top ring prospect for 1965 by the Police Gazette magazine and Ring magazine selected him with a similar honor. Boxing promoter, Sam Silverman, said at the time, “At this stage of his career he is as good as Pep or Robinson. Whitfield said he learned his style, often compared to Sugar Ray Robinson, from Tommy Maddox and Jimmy Watkins while training at Singer’s gym on Washington St. in downtown Buffalo.
Whitfield lost his first two close fights in November of 1966 after winning his first 23 straight and in early 1967 was matched in a non-title fight against new welterweight champion and IBHOF member, Curtis Cokes, in Dallas. Cokes stopped Teddy in the third round. Whitfield suffered two more losses in 1967, one, a very close decision to Marcel Cerdan, Jr. in France. After a decision win in 1968 Ted decided to hang up the gloves. He returned to Buffalo after retiring and was a boxing instructor at the Willert Park PAL in the early 1970s.
Theodore Franklin Whitfield named after the two Roosevelts, passed away on _______ at the age of _______.
Tonight Ring 44 is proud to induct Ted Whitfield into its Buffalo Boxing Hall of Fame.