BBN discovered 10 interesting facts about Travis Reeves (17-3-2) who faces Anthony Yarde in his 18th professional contest at the Royal Albert Hall on March 8 after original opponent Mehdi Amar was forced to withdraw due to injury.
In honour of the 38-year-old's first fight in the UK, BBN found out some interesting facts about the Baltimore boxer.
1. The second youngest of three children, Travis Anton Reeves was born October 27, 1980, in Baltimore, Maryland. His parents, Stacy and Murline Reeves, were strict on education and, by the age of 7, a young Reeves was selected to represent the State of Maryland in the Math Olympics.
2. Before boxing was his profession, a dedicated teenaged Travis would take the metro from Owings Mills to Broadway Street and then walk to the Baltimore Boxing Club in Fells Point. It was 1997 when his older brother Stacy took him to the gym for the first time. He was rough and undisciplined, but his unpolished talent caught the eye of trainer Jake Smith and after just three weeks in the gym he won his first amateur boxing match at the Arbutus Fire Hall, aged 17. A natural sportsman, Reeves excelled in athletics throughout his high school career and was given an opportunity to play football at North Carolina A&T State University, but he turned it down in favour of employment.
3. His gym is uncharacteristically and rather sweetly named the Honeycomb Boxing Gym in Baltimore, owned by Lamont Farmer, who attends all of his fights.
4. In 2004, following a loss in the amateur Maryland State Golden Gloves championship, amateur Reeves decided to turn over but nothing came to fruition. He signed a contract to a fight in Philadelphia that fell through, his camp started to break down and his boxing career was finished for a short while. He has since looked back and realised that he didn't have the right team surrounding him at the time. Reeves, nicknamed 'Seveer', eventually turned pro at the advanced age of 32, but claimed that the timing was perfect, stating, "I'm glad I didn't turn pro earlier".
5. Reeves graduated from Morgan State University in 2004 where he earned a bachelor’s degree in Electrical Engineering and went on to receive a Master’s degree in Engineering Management. He began working as an electrical engineer for Phoenix International, a marine services contractor, and eventually became their top electrical engineer. Reeves now does the same job for the U.S. Coast Guard. The savvy college graduate likes to invest in real estate and other ventures. His intelligence, good schooling and dedication earned him a good occupation and wages, but his love for fighting and fear of regret brought him back to boxing.
6. Reeves is signed to Shabazz Brothers and Shawstyle Productions, which have put professional boxing on the map in Baltimore. However, his debut in March 2013 was on the road, as were his first few fights, even fighting all the way down in Florida, until April 2014 in his eighth fight when he appeared in front of his home city for the first time and went on a 12-fight winning streak.
7. Aged 36, he won the United States Boxing Organizations' light-heavyweight championship at their sixth Baltimore Boxing Renaissance event in November 2016 at the DuBurns Arena against a previously undefeated Aaron Quattrocchi (10-0-1) by KO. It was his second professional title having won the Maryland State cruiserweight belt in his previous fight six-months prior.
8. 72-year-old Vernon Mason is Reeves' trainer at the Honeycomb Boxing Gym, who was a professional fighter himself between 1967- 1976, finishing with a record of 22-8-4. He too came to the UK to fight when he opposed Bethnal Green's most famous boxer John H Stracey in 1974 and was KO'd in the fourth-round, ironically in the very same venue at the Royal Albert Hall. He took an interest in Reeves when he witnessed him knocking out a professional boxer in a sparring session in 2010. "He reminded me of me. I saw the devious mind," Mason said.
9. Travis has fought for a world title before, albeit the largely unrecognised IBO World light-heavyweight title, in Germany in March 2018, but was halted by Armenian KO artist Karo Murat (31-3-1) in the final round.
10. He has since bounced back with two straight wins against Devin Butcher (6-2) in September 2018 and Lanell Bellows (18-3-2) in January this year at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas on a Mayweather Promotions show. He comes to the UK with a record of 17 wins from 22 bouts, racking up 113 rounds so far in his six-year pro career.