Teddy Atlas obtained his distinctive facial scar from a street fight during his troubled youth. The incident occurred in Stapleton, Staten Island, where he was involved in a confrontation. During the fight, he was slashed with a “007” flick knife, resulting in a significant facial injury that required hospitalization.
The “007” flick knife was a type of folding knife associated with New York City in the 1970s. Described as a flick knife, folding knife, or gravity knife, it had the characteristic that, when held in a closed position, the weight of the blade should be enough to allow it to open due to gravity or a flick of the wrist.
Teddy Atlas needed a total of 400 stitches to close the wound, with 200 stitches on the outside of his face and 200 on the inside. Reflecting on the incident, Atlas acknowledged that his attitude during the fight wasn’t right and that he was fighting more than one person. The use of the flick knife inflicted a serious injury, leaving him with a lasting scar.
In his autobiography titled “Atlas,” Teddy Atlas described the attack, stating, “I threw the guy with the blackjack to the ground, and then saw the driver coming at me, saw the flash of a knife in his hand. It was this kind of knife called an 007, a flick blade. I remember thinking, That’s a double-oh-seven… It was too late. He stepped back and spun, like a matador, slashing the side of my face. The blade was so sharp, I barely felt it.”