Al Bernstein stood in front of a thousand fans as he accepted his commemorative ring, and then took the podium at the 23rd International Boxing Hall of Fame's induction ceremony on Sunday. Behind him sat a ''who's who'' of boxing legends.
But on this day, the stage belonged to six in particular that made up the 2012 class: Thomas ''The Hitman'' Hearns, Mark ''Too Sharp'' Johnson, trainer Freddie Roach, ring announcer Michael Buffer, writer Michael Katz and Bernstein, the noted boxing analyst for Showtime.
As he began his speech, Bernstein glanced at the greats behind him and was humbled.
''This Hall of Fame is essentially for the great boxers you see on this stage,'' Bernstein said. ''It is built for them. It is their house. This Hall of Fame is very generous in the way it welcomes those of us who filled another function for boxing. I take this as a supreme honor that I'm allowed to be a part of this place that is so special.''