Jim Lampley

Jim Lampley

Infobox journalist
name = Jim Lampley

caption =
birthname = James Lampley
birth_date = birth date and age|1949|4|8
birth_place = Hendersonville, North Carolina, USA
age =
death_date =
death_place =
education =
occupation = Television journalist
alias =
gender = Male
status = Divorced
title =
family =
spouse = Bree Walker (former)
children = three daughters, one son
relatives =
ethnic =
religion =
salary =
networth =
credits = "HBO World Championship Boxing" Anchor and Co-Host (1988-present)
"Olympic Games" Reporter and Anchor (1984-present)
agent =

Jim Lampley (born April 8, 1949) is an American sports broadcaster, news anchor, movie producer, and restaurant owner. He has been in several television shows, but is better known for his participation in the "HBO Boxing" series (officially "HBO World Championship Boxing"). He currently works alongside Larry Merchant and Emanuel Steward in that series. Lampley has anchored a record 14 Olympic Games U.S. television broadcasts, most recently the 2008 Summer Olympics in Beijing.


Early life

Lampley was born in Hendersonville, North Carolina. His father died when he was five. His mother immersed him in sports to make up for what she felt his father would have done. He was raised in Hendersonville and Miami, Florida.

He graduated from the University of North Carolina in 1971 with a degree in English and finished coursework in 1974 for a master in Mass Communications also at UNC but never wrote his thesis because his career took off.

Early career

In 1974 while in graduate school, he was chosen along with Don Tollefson in what ABC called a "talent hunt". ABC executives thought that Lampley's youthful looks would make him endearing to the college crowds they looked to attract for their college football games. At ABC, he covered such events as baseball games, the 1986-1987 Indianapolis 500, five Olympics, as well as the program "Wide World of Sports".

In 1985, Lampley along with Al Michaels served as anchors for ABC's coverage of Super Bowl XIX, the first ever Super Bowl that ABC televised. Lampley would subsequently preside over the postgame trophy presentation ceremony.


In 1987, Lampley not only began a two year reign as anchor of ABC sports' coverage of the Indianapolis 500, but moved to CBS, where he took over duties as news co-anchor on the daily news show in Los Angeles, and also was a correspondent. That same year, he began working for HBO, covering boxing and HBO's annual telecast of Wimbledon. He also attended the Albertville Olympics in 1992, as a news anchor for KCBS-TV.


In 1992, Lampley moved to NBC, where he helped cover the 1992 Barcelona Olympics and the 1996 Atlanta Olympics. In 1993, Lampley took over studio hosting duties for Bob Costas on "The NFL on NBC". Lampley would move to play-by-play duties for NBC's NFL telecasts the following year and was subsequently replaced by Greg Gumbel. Before the Atlanta games, in 1995, he began working at the "Real Sports with Bryant Gumbel" HBO series. For his participation in that show, he has earned three Emmy awards. In 1998, he covered the Nagano Olympics and the Goodwill Games for Turner, and in 2000, he covered the Sydney Olympics, again for NBC.

In 2004, Lampley was the daytime anchor for NBC's Olympics coverage for the 2004 Summer Olympics, as well as anchoring the USA Network's coverage of the Games. In 2006, Lampley served as a central correspondent for the 2006 Winter Olympics which aired on the networks of NBC Universal. Torino 2006 was the 13th Olympics Lampley covered, surpassing the record set by America's original voice of the Olympics, Jim McKay. Lampley was again called upon to anchor for the 2008 Summer Olympics in Beijing, China, Lampley's 14th Games.


Most casual fans, however, probably know Lampley more than anything else, for his work on "HBO World Championship Boxing" show, and on the HBO pay-per-view telecast. As commentator in these shows, he has had the opportunity to call some of boxing's most famous moments, such as Thunder Meets Lightning, when Julio César Chávez saved himself from a decision defeat by knocking out Meldrick Taylor (who was leading the fight on two of the three official scorecards) with only two seconds to go in the last round; James "Buster" Douglas's upset of Mike Tyson for the World Heavyweight championship; and the first Riddick Bowe-Andrew Golota fight at Madison Square Garden, where a riot occurred following the "Foul Pole's" disqualification for low blows, and the famous "It happened...IT HAPPENED!" call of George Foreman's miracle comeback against then heavyweight champion Michael Moorer when a single straight right ended Morer's reign. Lampley is criticized by some viewers for allegedly being biased in favor of certain HBO "house fighters", while most enjoy his charisma and magnetic voice. In 1992, he won the Sam Taub Award for excellence in boxing broadcasting journalism. [ [http://www.ibhof.com/ibhfbwaa.htm Internantional Boxing Hall of Fame / BWAA Awards ] ]

Lampley also hosted a series called "Legendary Nights" in 12 installments in honor of HBO's three decades covering boxing in 2004, recounting 12 memorable fights broadcast on HBO in that timespan.


*Olympics Host: 1984 (Sarajevo), 1984 (Los Angeles), 1988 (Calgary), 1988 (Seoul), 1992 (Albertville), 1992 (Barcelona), 1994 (Lillehammer), 1996 (Atlanta), 1998 (Nagano), 2000 (Sydney), 2002 (Salt Lake City), 2004 (Athens), 2006 (Torino), and 2008 (Beijing)
*Boxing, Play by Play: HBO World Championship Boxing, HBO Pay-Per-View, HBO Boxing After Dark (from premiere to April 2006 and sporadically afterwards)

Film and producing career

Lampley's movie production company, "Crystal Spring Productions", has produced a handful of movies, including 2000's "Welcome to Hollywood". The company has plans of producing a movie about tennis player "Pancho Gonzalez", with Benjamin Bratt in the leading role.

In addition to several minor credits as an announcer in films, in 2006, Lampley portrayed himself in the movie "Rocky Balboa" covering the new events in Rocky's career as well as the final match against Mason Dixon. He also appeared in the 2007 sports comedy films "Blades of Glory" starring Will Ferrell and Jon Heder, and "Balls of Fury", with Christopher Walken.

Political views and other hosting

In 2005 after Bush's re-election, Lampley began to avidly express his political views and began posting on "The Huffington Post" website, where he revealed his belief that George W. Bush stole the 2004 election via vote tampering in Ohio. [ [http://www.huffingtonpost.com/jim-lampley/the-biggest-story-of-our-_b_576.html Jim Lampley: The Biggest Story of Our Lives - Entertainment on The Huffington Post ] ] Also on "The Huffington Post", Lampley retracted a claim that American deaths in Iraq are several times higher than official reports after finding out his source was fraudulent. [ [http://www.huffingtonpost.com/jim-lampley/the-ultimate-deception_b_2838.html Jim Lampley: The Ultimate Deception? - Politics on The Huffington Post ] ] [ [http://www.huffingtonpost.com/jim-lampley/a-poor-choice-of-sources_b_2891.html Jim Lampley: A Poor Choice of Sources - Politics on The Huffington Post ] ]

Lampley was one of the first program hosts on New York's sports talk radio station WFAN. More recently, Lampley can often be heard on "The Jim Rome Show" as a substitute host. Rome has stated on several occasions that "Jim Lampley is the smartest guy in the Jungle." Lampley has also filled in for nationally-syndicated liberal talk radio host Ed Schultz.

Personal life

Lampley married and divorced news anchor Bree Walker, with whom he has a son. He also has two older daughters from a previous marriage. Walker has a daughter from a previous marriage. Lampley lives in the San Diego, California area near his son. [ [http://www.hbo.com/boxing/bios/jim_lampley.html HBO Boxing Bios] ] Lampley is the former owner of two restaurants in Utah, both of which were named the "Lakota Restaurant and Bar". Lampley runs a production company with his ex-wife. In 2004, they announced on the "Larry King Show" that they were planning to remarry, but they never have.

On January 3, 2007, Lampley was arrested for domestic abuse against fiancée Candice Sanders, Miss California USA 2003, by the San Diego County Sheriff's Department. [cite news|title=Jim Lampley Arrested For Felony Domestic Violence|url=http://www.alaskareport.com/z45214.htm|publisher=Alaska Report|date=2007-01-05|accessdate=2007-01-05] A restraining order was obtained, but in February 2007, he was charged with violating the restraining order by being within 100 yards of his apartment; Lampley pleaded no contest and was sentenced to three years' probation, a fine, a domestic violence counselling program and 40 hours' community service. The DA's office investigated and Lampley will not face charges for the alleged attack itself. Investigators found "insufficient evidence to prove it". [cite news|title=Jim Lampley pleads no contest, gets probation |publisher=North County Times|url= http://www.nctimes.com/articles/2007/02/22/sports/professional/21_31_732_21_07.txt|date=2007-02-21|accessdate=2007-04-21|last=Figueroa |first=Teri]

Former spouse and news anchor Bree Walker said her relationship with Lampley led her to believe that "he's not capable of physical violence against anybody." "Jim has been a wonderful father to all four of his kids, and has been a generous husband and ex-husband", Walker said, "Any charges of battery would surprise me.".cite news|title=Lampley arrested for violating order|date=2007-01-05|accessdate=2007-04-21|url=http://www.signonsandiego.com/uniontrib/20070105/news_1s5lampley.html|publisher=The San Diego Union-Tribune|last=Jiménez|first=Jose Luis ]


External links

* [http://www.huffingtonpost.com/jim-lampley/ Jim Lampley at the Huffington Post]
* [http://www.hbo.com/boxing/bios/jim_lampley.html Biography at HBO Boxing]

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