By: Sean Crose
Langston Hampton is an ambitious man. Only 33 years old, this product of some of Memphis’ toughest streets is on his way to making his mark on the sport of boxing through his Lank Promotions. Unlike many in what is considered the red light district of sports, Hampton is about as clean as they come. “I don’t drink,” he tells me. “I don’t smoke.” He doesn’t do drugs, either. What’s more, after earning himself a degree around ten years ago, Hampton got himself into the boxing business. It’s an endeavor he truly has a passion for.
“I love what I do,” he says. While admitting that boxing is “a real political sport,” Hampton believes his youth helps him connect with fighters, who tend to be closer to his age than, say, the age of Bob Arum. Not that Hampton is ageist. To the contrary, the man is open of the debt he owes to legendary promoter Don King, who took Hampton under his wing when the Tennessean was a novice. “I learned a lot from him,” Hampton says of King. “He’s an icon. He’s a legend.” The experience helped give Hampton the confidence and skill to form Lank Promotions, which the promoter describes as a “new boxing/entertainment” enterprise “that’s designed for the world.”
In other words, the man’s looking beyond the traditional boxing fans base. For instance, Floyd Mayweather himself is part of the whirlwind surrounding Lank Promotions’ card this weekend at the FedEx Forum in Memphis. “He’s hosting an after party,” says Hampton. The card, which will feature former Mayweather opponent DeMarcus Crowley, will be live streamed on http://lanktheking.com/. It’s one of numerous events Hampton has planned. “We have four dates as far as this year,” he says. With things moving along smoothly, Hampton declares that “everything is looking marvelous.”
Sure enough, Hampton is working alongside Affiliation Management, which itself is affiliated with Mayweather’s The Money Team. Along with having effective connections, Hampton clearly believes a positive attitude brings success to one’s endeavors. As Lank Promotion’s homepage states, Hampton’s “unique approach to Sports & Entertainment can be attributed to having tackled his own personal struggles, transforming them into a positive philosophy and making him the youngest and one of the most sought-after professional boxing & entertainment promoters in the United States.”
Aside from Crowley, Saturday’s card, called “The Big Pay Back,” will showcase such fighters as Lanell Bellows and Charvis Holified. If all goes as planned, Hampton will more than live up to his nickname, “Lank the King.”
Langston Hampton can be followed on Twitter, @TheKingLilLank, and on Instagram at Instagram.com/LankTheKing