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USA Boxing Partners With Golden Gloves VR!

(May 15th) Golden Gloves VR, a virtual reality boxing game created by Tulsa-based tech company Engine Room VR, is the official esports boxing game of USA Boxing, the governing body for Olympic-style boxing, Mike McAtee, USA Boxing Executive Director, announced today. Under a partnership agreement that extends through 2028, the organizations will explore the application of virtual boxing for adaptive, fitness and competition boxing.


Esports are enormously popular and have experienced exponential growth over the last decade. The value of the Global Esports Market is projected to reach $2,396.9 million by the end of 2024. In 2021, the International Olympic Committee (IOC) embraced a dedicated agenda for nurturing virtual sports and engaging with gaming communities. Last year, the IOC established the Olympic Esports Series, with the first event held in Singapore.


“The 2024 Olympic Games in Paris represent the 120th year that the sport of Olympic-style boxing has been a part of the Olympics,” says McAtee. “Esports is such a rapidly growing area with huge potential. We believe it’s important to explore this space and the possibilities it holds for the future of Olympic-style boxing. Our coaches see the potential for this as a training tool for their boxers, as well as an avenue to expand the reach of our sport in so many other areas, such as adaptive sports, esports competitions, and fitness boxing.”

Golden Gloves VR has completed closed alpha testing of multi-player/PVP, a game feature that allows two human players to compete via their avatars in the same virtual game environment. Open beta testing will be available in the game beginning June 1. Amateur boxers from across the world, including members of the 2024 USA Boxing Olympic Team, had the opportunity to demo the game and the multiplayer feature at the 2024 USA Boxing International Invitational and World Boxing Cup in Pueblo, CO in April.


“USA Boxing and Golden Gloves VR will be establishing an official ranking system for e-boxers based on online game play and tournaments,” says Aaron Sloan, a USA Boxing certified coach and owner of Engine Room VR. “Qualifying players will be invited to compete at USA Boxing National Championships and at Golden Gloves of America’s National Tournament of Champions right alongside our real-world boxers. Our e-boxers will box live in virtual reality and be awarded their own rankings and titles.”


USA Boxing is the National Governing Body for Olympic-style boxing in the United States. USAB is a non-profit corporation and a member of the United States Olympic and Paralympic Committee. Responsible for training, competition and development for its sport, as well as nominating athletes to the U.S. Olympic, Youth Olympic, and Pan American Teams, USAB is also recognized by World Boxing as the national federation responsible for the governance of the sport of Olympic-style boxing in the United States. With over 60,000 members, including athletes, coaches, officials, physicians and administrators, USA Boxing sanctions all Olympic-style boxing competition in the United States.


National Golden Gloves began in 1923 when Chicago Tribune Sports Editor Arch Ward conceived the idea of a newspaper sponsored citywide amateur boxing tournament. Champions were awarded a miniature golden glove. Many great professional boxers have launched their early athletic careers participating as amateurs in Golden Gloves tournaments. Golden Gloves continues to play a major role in the selection of representatives for the U.S. team in the Olympic Games. Former National Golden Gloves champions include outstanding boxers like Muhammad Ali, Sugar Ray Leonard, Oscar De La Hoya, Mike Tyson, and Richard Torrez Jr.


Golden Gloves VR was designed by Tulsa-based tech company Engine Room VR for Meta Quest virtual reality headsets. Endorsed by Golden Gloves of America, a world-renowned name in amateur boxing, GGVR was developed in consultation with professional and amateur boxers and coaches to provide a realistic, immersive and progressive boxing experience where players can train and compete in a variety of virtual settings.


USA Boxing was the first National Federation to leave IBA in April of 2023 after its 77-year relationship as a charter member, and was the first to submit a completed application for membership to World Boxing. USA Boxing membership and the mission of World Boxing have been supported by the United States Olympic and Paralympic Committee (USOPC) every step of the way as the Olympic boxing crisis persisted. As a Founding Member of World Boxing, USA Boxing worked to ensure that the robust statutes were rooted in strong governance principles. Our support for World Boxing’s mission is not solely driven by the threat of boxing’s exclusion from the Olympic Program, but primarily by the unwavering belief that our boxers deserve an International Federation that operates according to strong governance, financial transparency, and fairness in the field of play. We are committed to working with World Boxing leaders to ensure that the organization upholds these principles and recognizes that being part of the Olympic Movement is a privilege rather than a right.


President Bach and IOC leadership cannot be any clearer—IBA’s failures in governance are not isolated to the boxing community. These failures impact sports representatives throughout the world, including but not limited to leaders of NOCs, other NFs and IFs, brand representatives, and the IOC itself. Continued support for an organization possessing such a track record of governance failures is inexcusable and fails our athletes.


We call on leaders of not just boxing National Federation leaders, but leaders of NOCs and other International Federations to stand up for our athletes by supporting boxing’s new International Federation and working together to ensure adherence to best-in-class governance principles.


USA Boxing Alumni Association

Created to champion a lifelong, mutually beneficial relations between USA Boxing and its alumni, --boxers, officials, coaches and boxing fans -- The Alumni Association connects generations of champions, inspiring and giving back to USA Boxing’s future boxing champions, in and out of the ring.


The USA Boxing Alumni Association is open to anyone who has a love for boxing and would like to stay connected with amateur boxing. Members are granted access to a wide variety of special events hosted by the Alumni Association, including its annual USA Boxing Alumni Association Hall of Fame reception.


To join the Alumni Association, simply register at for a $40.00 per year membership fee. New members will receive a T-shirt, keychain and e-wallet.


“Eric continues to be a great ambassador for USA Boxing,” said Chris Cugliari, USA Boxing Alumni Association Director. “Whether it’s through teaching and mentoring youth through the sport of boxing, or pursuing his countless ventures outside of the ring, he relentlessly pursues his passions and gives back to the next generation. It wouldn’t surprise me if he ran for President someday. We’re excited to witness the next chapters of his journey and appreciate everything he has given to our sport.”


Eric Kelly is now on the Silver Screen and a trip to Los Angeles for next year’s 96th Academy Awards may be in the stars.



USA Boxing is the National Governing Body for Olympic-style amateur boxing in the United States. USA Boxing is a non-profit corporation and a member of the United States Olympic and Paralympic Committee, responsible for training, competition and development of the sport, as well as nominating athletes to the U.S. Olympic, Youth Olympic and Pan American Games Teams. With over 50,000 members, including athletes, coaches, officials, physicians and administrators, USA Boxing sanctions all Olympic-style boxing competitions in the United States and has a mission to promote and grow Olympic-style amateur boxing in the United States and to inspire the tireless pursuit of Olympic gold and enable athletes and coaches to achieve sustained competitive excellence. Additionally, USA Boxing endeavors to teach all participants the character, confidence and focus they need to become resilient and diverse champions, both in and out of the ring. USA Boxing is one team, one nation, going for gold!

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