Washington boxer Jerry Ballard was stabbed to death Tuesday morning in Northwest Washington in what friends said was a dispute with another man.

Ballard, 32, of the 5700 block of 8th Street NW, had been stabbed multiple times when police found him at 8:25 a.m. Tuesday in an alley in the 5500 block of 7th Street NW, said Sgt. Joseph Gentile, a police spokesman.

Ballard was taken to Washington Hospital Center and pronounced dead at 9:31 a.m., Gentile said.

Police had not made any arrests by late yesterday and were continuing to investigate the stabbing, Gentile said.

Ballard, a heavyweight promoted by Don King, had a record of 21-2-1, with all his wins coming via knockout. King frequently called Ballard one of the sport's up-and-coming heavyweights and included him in the last show King promoted here, at MCI Center on April 24.

Ballard won that fight, his last, with a second-round knockout of Garing Lane.

Local boxing coaches remembered Ballard as a tough fighter with a combative personality. Jim Finley, owner of Finley's Gym in Northeast Washington, said Ballard trained there for about seven years. He recalled a boxer with a lot of raw talent but also a volatile temper.

"He was pretty good," Finley said. "He thought he could beat anybody in the world."

Victor Davis, a fellow boxer and instructor at Round One Fitness Center in Capitol Heights, said he did not know much about Ballard outside the ring.

"He could have been a world champion one day if he had got his act together and worked hard," Davis said.