Sat04192014

Sports

Boxing, ‘bloodline’ and business

Moynette Flowers

 

There is no known DNA test that can detect boxing in the blood. Moynette Flowers and his brothers don’t need one. They know it’s true.

There is no known DNA test that can detect boxing in the blood. Moynette Flowers and his brothers don’t need one. They know it’s true.

“My dad, he fought. My granddaddy fought. I started when I was six, so it’s in the bloodline, said Flowers. “My whole family fought really. My sisters, I’ve got two sisters that fight too.”

 
 Moynette Flowers

On Tuesday (April 10), Flowers will be fighting again, this time in the main event of a promotion dubbed “Boxing on Beale’s ‘Unfinished Business’” at the Omni New Daisy Theatre at 330 Beale Street.

Tuesday’s boxing card is a product of CDA Promotions in conjunction with Flowers Power Boxing. The conjunction makes this more than a boxing story. It’s also a saga of family, escape, desires, entrepreneurial spirit and a determination to give back.

Flowers Power links Flowers with his brothers – Emmanuel, Nicholas and Duran – in a budding effort to promote up and coming fighters, giving them chances they did not have. Brothers Emmanuel and Nicholas will be featured on the fight card. Brother Duran is a trainer.

“Nobody didn’t really give us a chance, nobody really tried to help us out,” said Flowers, asked to shed light on the expansion from boxers to businessmen. “So we just studied and learned out what we had to do, and just went from there.”

Eighteen months or so into it, things are going great, said Flowers.

“A lot of people in Memphis are helping us out now, a lot of support. People are showing up for the fights. It’s been a good little journey,” he said.

Clift Dates of CDA Promotions is among those who have made their support known.

“I came to meet them at the last fight they had in Memphis (in February). I was so overwhelmed with the style of fighting, the way they fought and they have a good following,” said Dates.

A conversation yielded the history of the Flowers family and word of a give-back-to-the-community effort the Flowers’ were anchoring in the Southbrook Mall in Whitehaven. Dates decided to hook up with Flowers Power.

Over in the Southbrook Mall, the Flowers Power project is taking shape.

“We are trying to help the youth, help them in the way we didn’t get help,” said Flowers. “We have a boxing gym in the new part of the Southbrook Mall and we are working on an arena right now so we can have kids come around and do all kinds of activities, like football, baseball, soccer; just doing something for them….anything that they like, we are trying to do it for them.”

Where does a notion like that come from?

“I played pee-wee football and stuff when I was growing up,” said Flowers, adding that such activity, along with boxing, “kept me out of trouble, out of the streets. So I felt like they needed to be open to something like that.”

The financing mostly is coming out of the Flowers’ pockets ($50k to $100k so far), he said. “We’re just trying to help. We’re making our money back with boxing.”

The Southbrook center is expected to be open in about two months. Construction is underway.

Flowers Power is based out of Tampa, Fla., which is where the boxing trail led, said Flowers, quickly adding, “We’re from Memphis.”

That translates into raised in the Westwood and Whitehaven areas, said Flowers. His mother, Sweetie, and his father, Michael, live in Memphis and raised a large family. “There’s ten of us,” said Flowers.

“Childhood, it was OK. My dad was real strict and I didn’t understand why until I got older, as far as running around with the wrong crowd. Boxing really kept me out of harm’s way and I kind of kept my brothers and sisters on track.”

On track now involves traveling broadly, with the Flowers Power crew having recently returned from Asia. It’s a far cry from thoughts he had as a 15 year old.

“Thirteen years ago, I thought living in the projects was the way to be,” said Flowers, who grew up in the Graves Manor and Indian Hills projects in the Westwood area. “That’s why I want to help the kids out, because they think that’s the way you supposed to be, so they don’t ever look for something better. When you come up, that’s what you think.”

Interviewed by The New Tri-State Defender on the 44th commemoration of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s assassination in Memphis, Flowers obliged a request to reflect on that event and what lesson he might fashion for the children who will frequent the Flowers-powered center in Whitehaven.

“I would say that everybody has a chance. Everybody has a future,” said Flowers. “All you’ve got to do is wake up. Wake up and open your eyes. You can really do what you wanna do.”


 

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