Boxer Scott “Cujo” Sigmon retired from the sport earlier this year.
But he isn’t through fighting.
Instead of a ring, Sigmon’s next bout will be a meeting room with the Virginia Department of Professional and Occupational Regulation, who oversees 18 regulatory boards and programs.
One of those is the Professional Boxing, Martial Arts and Professional Wrestling advisory board.
It’s that board that Sigmon has a beef with and the two will square off on June 28.
He said the panel has created a hostile environment for boxing promoters in the state. And since he has hung up his gloves, he’s turning his focus to promoting bouts, especially featuring his 19-year-old phenom Austin Deanda, who recently improved to 8-0 with a knockout win in Rock Hill, S.C.
“A lot of business owners have been constantly asking me why we can’t run these events in Lynchburg,” Sigmon said. “I actually have a meeting with the commission and I’m going to take some of the evidence to prove beyond a reasonable doubt the DPOR’s incompetence. I think the state’s going to listen because I have a lot of expert testimony, letter’s written on my behalf. I’m going to quantify the incompetence they’ve had in their office.”
According to its website, the The Pro Boxing, Martial Arts and Professional Wrestling advisory board offers guidance to the DPOR director for regulation of promoters and events involving professional boxing, martial arts and professional wrestling. The advisory board is composed of representatives of each discipline and two citizen members.
Kate Nosbisch is the executive director of the board and Bonnie Davis is the operations administrator. Roze Merditaj and Daniel Hardy are citizen members and Mark D’Attilio and Delvis McCadden are the boxing representatives.
Members are appointed by DPOR Director Mitch Melis, who was appointed by Gov. Glenn Youngkin in January.
“I think it’s very likely we’ll be seeing Austin in Lynchburg soon,” Sigmon said. “If I can win my fight with the state.”
Sigmon said he’s had 50 consecutive bouts shot down by the Virginia Commission. And he’s not the only one. Sigmon said James Hogan, who he called the most prolific promoter in the state, has been forced to take his bouts to West Virginia. Hogan will be accompanying Sigmon to the meeting. He cited other examples of promoters taking their shows out of Virginia.
“In this meeting, I’m going to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the current state of the DPOR is inept and incompetent,” he said. “And furthermore I’m going to quantify statistically and inarguably and prove the damages they’ve caused to myself and other promoters.”
One stat he plans on pointing out is the difference between South Carolina and Virginia since the pandemic shutdown in 2020.
“Something that wasn’t expected, since the pandemic, boxing has actually exploded across the nation, the number of shows,” he said. “So in 2021, South Carolina had 24 shows, eight times what they normally have done, but inexplicably Virginia only had three. To date, South Carolina has already had 10 shows and they’ve got seven more scheduled. Virginia has only had three.
“We don’t have to put up with this (expletive), bro. They work for me. The way they are killing it is really hard to explain to a non-boxing person. But I’ve got about 15 business owners and they’re ready to get some people removed.”
If he prevails, Sigmon said there will more boxing events in the area across the state. Good news for fans of Deanda, the Amherst native who is winning fans with every KO.
“I think most people can see he’s really turned the corner. … If I win, we’re going to be fighting in Virginia almost exclusively,” he said. “If they meet my criteria in the meeting, (Deanda) will probably be in the ring in September in Lynchburg.”