By Barry Janoff
August 17, 2014: During a boxing career that covered more than 20 years, Vinny Paz — who was born Vinny Pazienza, aka The Pazmanian Devil — amassed a 50-10 record, including 30 KOS. Along the way he earned such titles as the IBF World Lightweight crown, WBA World Light-Middleweight crown, IBO World Super-Middleweight crown, IBC World Super-Middleweight crown and the WBC International Super-Middleweight crown.
In late 1991, Paz was involved in a car accident in which he broke his neck. Although he said that doctors told him he would never walk, let alone fight, again, he was back in the ring, working with trainer Kevin Rooney, just over a year later. His boxing career continued for another decade but wound down after 2001, with only one fight in 2002 and one in 2004, which became his 50th and final career win.
Since then, Paz has largely been out of the public spotlight. But now, Paz is coming back on several fronts.
A movie based on his life, Bleed For This, is currently being filmed with release scheduled for 2015. It stars Miles Teller as Paz and Aaron Eckhart as Rooney, under the auspices of executive producer Martin Scorsese.
Paz also is at the center of a multi-media campaign for Wocket, a next-generation smart wallet from NXT-ID designed to replace all the cards in your wallet.
According to the Shelton, Conn.-based company, Paz is part of a celebrity ad campaign, "Get to Know Wocket," where he will explain how the product is designed to "protect your identity and replace all the cards in your wallet, with no smart phone required."
"We are delighted that notable celebrities from movies, music and sports are excited about the Wocket and are willing to lend their support to get the word out."
The Wocket can hold information for more than 10,000 cards (such as credit, debit, ATM, loyalty, gift, ID, membership, insurance, ticket, emergency, medical, business) and coupons and 100 voice commands. NXT-ID said it "works anywhere credit cards are accepted and only works with your biometric stamp of approval."
Singer/actor Joey Fatone ('N Sync) has appeared in previous marketing.
"We are delighted that notable celebrities from movies, music and sports are excited about the Wocket and are willing to lend their support to get the word out about putting a wocket in your pocket!" Gino Pereira, CEO for NXT-ID, said in a statement. "They certainly give a level of comfort and familiarity to a consumer that is still learning about the Wocket in our current advance ordering phase. We look forward to putting Wockets in the consumer's pocket this fall."