Lost Wbc Title
Lewis's reputation as a boxer took a big hit in 1994 when he lost his WBC title to Oliver McCall in an upset. Lewis wanted the fight, but lost by technical knockout. McCall was the underdog, and a former sparring partner of heavyweight champion Mike Tyson. McCall got Lewis with his use of a quick overhand right.
For his next fights, Lewis looked to put himself in a position to be eligible at another shot at a heavyweight title and perhaps at a fight with Tyson. He again switched trainers, hiring the legendary Emanuel Steward, who trained a number of winning boxers, in 1995. Steward added more punches to Lewis's repertoire including a left hook, uppercuts, and the jab, but could not give Lewis the aggression many fight experts believed Lewis lacked.
To be eligible for a chance at the title, Lewis fought Ray Mercer in 1996. Though Lewis won by split decision, many who saw the fight did not believe that he deserved the victory. One judge scored it as a draw, while the other two gave it to Lewis by a small margin.
Lewis's next goal was WBC heavyweight champion Tyson. A deal could not be reached between the boxers, and Tyson gave up the belt rather than fight Lewis. Lewis sued him to force a fight, but it did not happen. Lewis then regained the WBC title by defeating McCall in 1996.
In 1997, Lewis defended his WBC title by defeating Andrew Golota. Lewis only took thirty-six punches in the first round to win. He knocked Golota down twice before knocking him out. This was one of his best fights, showing Lewis's power. Richard Hoffer wrote in Sports Illustrated, "Lewis's swarming knockout of challenger Golota was so swift and conclusive that it was impossible not to be encouraged by his emergence as a force in the sport." This fight gave Lewis the test that he needed and his British handlers had avoided. He also defended his WBC title by defeating Shannon Briggs and Zelijko Mavrovic in 1998.
- Lennox Lewis - Controversial Fight With Holyfield
- Lennox Lewis - Chronology
- Other Free Encyclopedias