Former World Heavyweight Champion Leon Spinks Dead At 67


2021-02-07 03:26:11




Former world heavyweight boxing champion Leon Spinks, who took the crown from Muhammad Ali in 1978 before losing a rematch, died on Friday, according to his publicists. He was 67. Spinks had been hospitalized in December at Las Vegas before losing a five-year battle with cancer with his wife, Brenda Spinks, at his side, according to a statement from The Firm PR to Las Vegas television station KVVU. “His final fight was fought with the same skill, grace and grit that had carried him through so many lifetime challenges,” the statement said.

Newsbeep

“Leon fought his battle with numerous illnesses resiliently, never losing his trademark smile. Showing true Spinks determination, he never threw in the towel.”

Spinks finished his career 26-17 with three draws and 14 knockouts, but struggled to try and recapture the fame that came early in his career in one of the most shocking upsets in boxing history.

With a trademark gap-toothed grin, Spinks fought his way to Olympic gold in 1976 as a US light heavyweight in Montreal and turned professional six months later at age 23.

After only eight professional fights, seven wins and a draw, Spinks was sent into the ring against iconic Ali on February 15, 1978 at the Las Vegas Hilton.

Spinks captured a 15-round split decision over a 36-year-old Ali, who lost world crowns in the ring for the only time in his career, falling to 55-3 as Spinks claimed the heavyweight title in the shortest time of any fighter in history, only 13 months after his pro debut.

It would be the greatest moment of his career.

Seven months later, in a rematch before 70,000 at the Superdome in New Orleans, a fit and formidable Ali won a unanimous 15-round decision in what would be the final victory of his legendary career, making Ali the first three-time champion in heavyweight history.

Spinks had been stripped of the World Boxing Council crown for taking the rematch with Ali rather than face mandatory challenger Ken Norton, so the second fight was only for the World Boxing Association title.

Spinks lost his next fight as well but earned another shot at the crown in 1981 against Larry Holmes only to be stopped in the third round.

It took nearly five years for Spinks to gain another chance at a world crown but he fought for the WBC crusierweight title in 1986, stopped in the sixth round by Dwight Muhammad Qawi.

That began a run where he managed only one win and one draw in 10 fights. He lost five of his final eight fights before retiring in 1995.

Promoted

Spinks’s son, Cory, was an undisputed welterweight champion from 2003-2005 and had brief junior middleweight reigns in 2007 and 2009.

Spinks’s younger brother Michael was a 1976 Olympic middleweight champion who was the undisputed light heavyweight champion from 1983-1985 and a heavyweight champion from 1985-1986.

Topics mentioned in this article



Source link

47 Comments

  1. hauttter February 8, 2021
  2. googueDef February 10, 2021
  3. werruipse February 11, 2021
  4. Smisttofs February 12, 2021
  5. Smisttofs February 13, 2021
  6. Smisttofs February 13, 2021
  7. Smisttofs February 14, 2021
  8. Smisttofs February 14, 2021
  9. Brampums February 15, 2021
  10. NatoeratT February 19, 2021
  11. NatoeratT February 19, 2021
  12. Croffeave February 21, 2021
  13. Croffeave February 21, 2021
  14. Croffeave February 22, 2021
  15. psysfurdy February 24, 2021
  16. fromssott February 25, 2021
  17. Tofpeeddy February 26, 2021
  18. Tofpeeddy February 27, 2021
  19. Tofpeeddy February 27, 2021
  20. Tofpeeddy February 28, 2021
  21. deersassy February 28, 2021
  22. actuapync March 4, 2021
  23. actuapync March 4, 2021
  24. EPIDEWHOW March 5, 2021
  25. EPIDEWHOW March 7, 2021
  26. poggeld March 12, 2021
  27. poggeld March 14, 2021
  28. poggeld March 15, 2021
  29. poggeld March 16, 2021
  30. Advomma March 17, 2021
  31. Pagebact March 21, 2021
  32. Pagebact March 23, 2021
  33. Insesia March 29, 2021
  34. Insesia March 30, 2021
  35. Insesia March 31, 2021

Leave a Reply