Greg Page (boxer)

Greg Page (October 25, 1958 – April 27, 2009) was an American professional boxer who competed from 1979 to 2001, and held the WBA heavyweight title from 1984 to 1985. He was also a regular sparring partner for Mike Tyson, famously knocking down the then-undefeated world champion during a 1990 session.

Greg Page
Height6 ft 2 in (188 cm)
Reach81 in (206 cm)
Born(1958-10-25)October 25, 1958
Louisville, Kentucky, U.S.
DiedApril 27, 2009(2009-04-27) (aged 50)
Louisville, Kentucky, U.S.
Boxing record
Total fights76
Wins by KO48

Amateur careerEdit

Page, after a brief stint with a Southern Indiana trainer, started amateur boxing at age 15 under the tutelage of Leroy Emerson at the Louisville Parks Department gym in the Cherokee Triangle neighborhood.

He first came to the public's attention by sparring several rounds with the iconic Muhammad Ali.

In 1976, at the USA–USSR Duals at the Caesars Palace, Las Vegas, Page scored a major victory when he defeated Igor Vysotsky, a top-ranked heavyweight amateur boxer in the world, who never has been knocked down,[1] the big punching Russian who twice beat the legendary Cuban and three-time Olympic Gold Medalist Teofilo Stevenson.[2] Page also beat James Tillis, Tony Tubbs, Mitch Green, and Marvin Stinson.

By that time he was the #1 ranked amateur heavyweight in the United States.[2]

At the USA vs. socialist countries duals held in 1977-1978 Page defeated Polish Antoni Kuskowski on points (3–0), lost a 1–2 points decision to Cuban Angel Milián, stopped Romanian Mircea Șimon in the third round, defeated East German Juergen Fanghaenel on points.

Page won the National AAU Heavyweight Championship in 1977. The following year, he repeated as the National AAU Heavyweight Champion and won the National Golden Gloves Heavyweight Championship.

Amateur highlightsEdit

  • 1975 National Golden Gloves Quarterfinalist, losing a decision to John Tate.
  •   1976 Ohio State Fair Champion, upsetting National AAU Champion Marvin Stinson.
  •   1976 National Golden Gloves Semi-Finalist, losing a decision to Michael Dokes.
  •   1977 National AAU Heavyweight Champion, defeating Woody Clark. Page avenged an earlier loss to Clark, and was named the tournament's outstanding boxer.
  •   1977 National Golden Gloves Finalist, losing to Jimmy Clark.
  •   1978 National AAU Heavyweight champion.
  •   1978 National Golden Gloves Heavyweight Champion, stopping William Hosea at 2:38 of the second round
  • Defeated Igor Vysotsky, the man who twice beat Cuban legend Teofilo Stevenson.
  • Defeated Tony Tubbs six out of seven times while in amateurs.
  • Finished amateur career having 105 fights under his belt, with a record of 94–11.

Professional careerEdit

Early yearsEdit

Page turned pro in February 1979, knocking out Don Martin in two rounds before a crowd of 7,500 at the Commonwealth Convention Center in Louisville. He put together 13 straight wins, 12 by knockout. The only fighter to go the distance with Page was George Chaplin, whom he defeated by a ten-round majority decision. Afterwards, Page was ranked in the top ten by the WBA.

USBA heavyweight championEdit

Page won the vacant USBA Heavyweight title on February 7, 1981 with a seventh-round TKO of Stan Ward.

After knocking out Marty Monroe and Alfredo Evangelista, Page had a rematch with George Chaplin and won by a twelve-round split decision. He followed the Chaplin win with a fourth-round knockout of Scott LeDoux.

Page retained the USBA belt with a unanimous decision over Jimmy Young on May 2, 1982. The following month, on the undercard of the Larry Holmes/Gerry Cooney fight, Page fought Trevor Berbick. Fighting with a broken right thumb from the second round, Page lost for the first time as a professional, dropping a ten-round unanimous decision to Berbick.

Page returned to defend the USBA belt against contender James "Quick" Tillis in November 1982. After suffering the first knockdown of his career in the second round, Page came back to KO Tillis in the eighth round.

World title fights and becoming WBA heavyweight championEdit

According to a New York Times article, Butch Lewis had Page set up to fight the winner of Mike Weaver-Randy Cobb WBA world title fight in mid-to-late 1982, but Page had switched his allegiance from Lewis to Don King. In addition, Page had contacted his lawyer in March of that year to drop his ranking in the WBA from #2 to #3, behind Michael Dokes.

In 1983, Page retained the USBA title again, beating Renaldo Snipes over twelve rounds and taking his WBC #1 ranking. WBC heavyweight champion Larry Holmes, claiming the $2.55 million purse he was offered to fight Page wasn't enough, vacated the WBC title.

In March 1984, Page fought Tim Witherspoon for the vacant WBC belt. Incensed over money troubles with promoter Don King, Page had gone on strike in the gym and arrived out of shape for the bout. Witherspoon, who had lost a disputed decision to Holmes the previous year, pulled off an upset and took the title with a twelve-round majority decision. After the fight, Page fired Leroy Emerson as his trainer.

Page returned in August with new trainer Janks Morton, and fought undefeated David Bey. Page lost his second fight in a row when Bey took a twelve-round unanimous decision.

When Bey refused to fight reigning WBA heavyweight title holder Gerrie Coetzee in Sun City, South Africa due to Apartheid, Page stepped in. Page knocked Coetzee down twice before knocking him out in the eighth round to win the title, in a round that was unusual as it overran by a minute.

Page made his first title defense against Tony Tubbs in Buffalo, New York on April 29, 1985. Page had beaten Tubbs six out of seven times in the amateurs and was the favorite to win, but Tubbs upset the odds and won by a fifteen-round unanimous decision. To make matters worse, Page's hotel room in Buffalo was burgled. Taken was Page's championship belt, a $13,000 watch, and a $10,000 mink coat belonging to his road cook.[3]

Downward spiralEdit

Page returned to face James "Buster" Douglas in January 1986. Douglas stunned Page and took a unanimous decision. Frequently out of shape, Page also lost to Orlin Norris in a title fight and even to the journeyman Mark Wills.

Page became a regular sparring partner for reigning World Heavyweight Champion Mike Tyson in the late 1980s and boxed on several of his undercards. Before Tyson's upset loss to Buster Douglas in February 1990, Page decked Tyson in a public sparring session. He was believed to be in line to fight Tyson when he lost to Wills.[4]

Page continued to fight and, in 1992, fought the Jamaican Donovan "Razor" Ruddock. Ruddock was returning after two big fights with Tyson that, due to the subsequent incarceration of Tyson, had established Ruddock as arguably the world's best heavyweight. Page gave Ruddock a hard time before being rocked by a series of big shots in the eighth round, which caused the referee to stop the contest.[5]

After defeating former WBA Heavyweight Champion James "Bonecrusher" Smith by a unanimous decision, Page was matched with former WBO Heavyweight Champion Francesco Damiani in September 1992. In a close contest, he lost two points for repeatedly losing his mouthpiece. The point deductions cost Page a draw: All three judges had Damiani winning by two points. In August 1993 Page boxed future WBA Heavyweight Champion Bruce Seldon and was stopped in the ninth round. He retired after the fight.


After retiring, Page started training boxers. He worked with Oliver McCall and was in McCall's corner when he stunningly scored a second-round knockout of Lennox Lewis to win the WBC World Heavyweight Championship in London on September 24, 1994[6] and was also present for McCall's infamous breakdown in the rematch with Lewis.

He trained boxers for several years, but grew restless. "I was training boxers to fight guys I could beat myself," Page said.[7]

Page returned to the ring in May 1996. He went 16-0-1 with 15 knockouts before taking on Monte Barrett in October 1998. Barrett, 18-0 with 12 knockouts, won by a lopsided unanimous decision.

After dropping a dubious decision to journeyman Artis Pendergrass, Page had a rematch with Tim Witherspoon in June 1999. The 40-year-old Page scored a first round knockdown and won when the 41-year-old Witherspoon tore a muscle in his back and couldn't come out for the eighth round.[8]

Page went 2-2 in his next four fights. He was well past his prime, but he continued to fight because he needed money. In 1998, Page filed for bankruptcy, claiming a $50,000 debt. By 2000, he was working his first 9-to-5 job, painting dental equipment at Whip-Mix Corp. in the South End of Louisville.[9]


On March 9, 2001, Page fought Dale Crowe at Peel's Palace in Erlanger, Kentucky for $1,500. Page appeared to be holding his own with Crowe until the tenth round. Crowe said, "The timekeeper smacked the mat with his hand toward the end of the fight to indicate ten seconds were left, and that's when I went after Greg with one last flurry." Crowe hit Page with a flush left to the chin and then pushed him back. Page fell against the ropes, slid down, and was counted out by the referee.[citation needed]

What followed was chaos. There was no ambulance, no team of paramedics, nor oxygen, all of which were required by law. The ringside doctor, Manuel Mediodia, wasn't licensed in Kentucky and was under suspension in Ohio. At the time of the stoppage, Mediodia had already left and had to be brought back into the building. Twenty-two minutes passed before an ambulance arrived.[10]

Before the fight, Page's trainer, James Doolin, complained to several members of the state commission about the conditions, including the lack of oxygen. He then wrote his complaints on a piece of paper and sealed it inside an envelope. Doolin gave it to the commission chairman, Jack Kerns, who then gave it back to Doolin. "Mail it to me," Kerns said.[11]

Page was taken to the emergency room at St. Luke's hospital, where a CT scan revealed a huge mass being formed by the bleeding inside his head. He was then transported to University Hospital in Cincinnati.[12] During post-fight brain surgery, he suffered a stroke and was left paralyzed on the left side of his body. Page was in a coma for nearly a week.[13]

For the rest of his life, Page suffered many complications from his injury. He was hospitalized numerous times for such ailments as pneumonia, acute respiratory failure, sepsis, hypothermia, and seizures.[14][15][16]

Page filed a lawsuit against the state of Kentucky and settled out of court for $1.2 million in 2007. As part of the settlement, boxing safety regulations the state enacted the previous year were named the "Greg Page Safety Initiative."


In the early morning hours of April 27, 2009, Page died at home in Louisville.[17] His death was consistent with positional asphyxia, an inability to breathe because of body position. "He had a hospital bed at home, and he slid out, which he has done before," said Jim Wesley, a Jefferson County deputy coroner. "His head was lodged between the rail and the bed."[18]

About 100 friends, family and admirers gathered at Our Lady of Mount Carmel for his funeral, which ran more than two hours. Amid tears, gospel music and emotional speeches, messages were read from State Senator Gerald Neal, who praised Page's "gallant fight," and Louisville Mayor Jerry Abramson, who said Page's legacy would live on.[13]

Professional boxing recordEdit

76 fights 58 wins 17 losses
By knockout 48 6
By decision 9 11
By disqualification 1 0
Draws 1
No. Result Record Opponent Type Round, time Date Location Notes
76 Loss 58–17–1   Dale Crowe KO 10 (10), 1:56 Mar 9, 2001   Peels Palace, Erlanger, Kentucky, U.S. For vacant Kentucky heavyweight title
75 Win 58–16–1   Mark Bradley TKO 1 (10), 1:20 Oct 9, 2000   Longhead's Bar & Grill, Louisville, Kentucky, U.S.
74 Loss 57–16–1   Robert Davis TKO 8 (10) Jun 29, 2000   Hammerstein Ballroom, New York City, New York, U.S.
73 Win 57–15–1   Terrence Lewis KO 7 (10), 2:01 Feb 9, 2000   Ramada Inn, Rosemont, Illinois, U.S.
72 Loss 56–15–1   Jorge Luis González UD 10 Nov 14, 1999   Rose Garden, Portland, Oregon, U.S.
71 Win 56–14–1   Tim Witherspoon RTD 7 (10), 3:00 Jun 18, 1999   Crown Coliseum, Fayetteville, North Carolina, U.S.
70 Loss 55–14–1   Artis Pendergrass UD 10 Apr 1, 1999   Coeur d'Alene Casino Resort Hotel, Worley, Idaho, U.S.
69 Win 55–13–1   Harry Daniels KO 2 (10), 1:37 Mar 27, 1999   Genesis Convention Center, Gary, Indiana, U.S.
68 Loss 54–13–1   Monte Barrett UD 10 Oct 23, 1998   Trump Marina, Atlantic City, New Jersey, U.S.
67 Win 54–12–1   George Harris TKO 1 (10) May 19, 1998   Nashville, Tennessee, U.S.
66 Win 53–12–1   Marion Wilson UD 8 Mar 27, 1998   Trump Marina, Atlantic City, New Jersey, U.S.
65 Draw 52–12–1   Jerry Ballard PTS 10 Jan 31, 1998   Ice Palace, Tampa, Florida, U.S.
64 Win 52–12   Rocky Bentley TKO 1 (8) Dec 16, 1997   Music City Mix Factory, Nashville, Tennessee, U.S.
63 Win 51–12   Harry Daniels PTS 4 Dec 9, 1997   Nashville, Tennessee, U.S.
62 Win 50–12   James Holly TKO 1 (8) Dec 2, 1997   Nashville, Tennessee, U.S.
61 Win 49–12   Nate Jones KO 1 (8) Sep 23, 1997   Nashville, Tennessee, U.S.
60 Win 48–12   Moses Harris TKO 3 Sep 9, 1997   Nashville, Tennessee, U.S.
59 Win 47–12   Robert Boykin KO 1 Aug 19, 1997   Nashville, Tennessee, U.S.
58 Win 46–12   Wes Black TKO 1 Jun 24, 1997   Nashville, Tennessee, U.S.
57 Win 45–12   Frankie Hines KO 1 Jun 17, 1997   Nashville, Tennessee, U.S.
56 Win 44–12   Jerry Barnes TKO 1 Jun 10, 1997   Nashville, Tennessee, U.S.
55 Win 43–12   Armando Turrubiartes KO 1 May 20, 1997   Nashville, Tennessee, U.S.
54 Win 42–12   Frankie Hines TKO 1, 1:06 Jul 23, 1996   Blakely's Restaurant & Lounge, Chesapeake, Virginia, U.S.
53 Win 41–12   Tyrone Miles KO 1 (10) Jun 15, 1996   National Guard Armory, Wentworth, North Carolina, U.S.
52 Win 40–12   James Burch TKO 1 (10), 1:54 Jun 12, 1996   The Ritz, Raleigh, North Carolina, U.S.
51 Win 39–12   Robert Jackson TKO 1 (4), 2:57 May 16, 1996   Elks Lodge, Norfolk, Virginia, U.S.
50 Loss 38–12   Bruce Seldon TKO 9 (12), 0:49 Aug 6, 1993   Coliseo Rubén Rodríguez, Bayamón, Puerto Rico For IBF Inter-Continental heavyweight title
49 Win 38–11   Mike Faulkner RTD 7 (10) May 7, 1993   Sands Hotel and Casino, Paradise, Nevada, U.S.
48 Win 37–11   Dan Murphy TKO 3 (10) Jan 30, 1993   The Pyramid, Memphis, Tennessee, U.S.
47 Win 36–11   Kevin P Porter TKO 8 (10) Dec 13, 1992   The Mirage, Paradise, Nevada, U.S.
46 Loss 35–11   Francesco Damiani UD 10 Sep 12, 1992   Thomas & Mack Center, Paradise, Nevada, U.S.
45 Win 35–10   James Smith UD 10 Jun 26, 1992   CSU Convocation Center, Cleveland, Ohio, U.S.
44 Loss 34–10   Donovan Ruddock RTD 8 (10), 3:00 Feb 15, 1992   The Mirage, Paradise, Nevada, U.S.
43 Win 34–9   Joey Christjohn TKO 1 (10) Nov 29, 1991   The Mirage, Paradise, Nevada, U.S.
42 Win 33–9   Fred Whitaker KO 2 Jun 8, 1991   Civic Arena, St. Joseph, Missouri, U.S.
41 Win 32–9   Mark Young TKO 3 (8), 2:28 Mar 18, 1991   The Mirage, Paradise, Nevada, U.S.
40 Loss 31–9   Mark Wills TKO 6 (10), 1:34 May 19, 1990   Caesars Palace, Paradise, Nevada, U.S.
39 Win 31–8   Martis Fleming TKO 1 (10), 1:36 Mar 17, 1990   Las Vegas Hilton, Winchester, Nevada, U.S.
38 Win 30–8   Charles Woolard KO 2 Jul 21, 1989   Convention Hall, Atlantic City, New Jersey, U.S.
37 Win 29–8   Harry Terrell TKO 2 (10) May 12, 1989   Fieldhouse, Struthers, Ohio, U.S.
36 Loss 28–8   Orlin Norris UD 12 Apr 25, 1989   Showboat Hotel and Casino, Las Vegas, Nevada, U.S. For NABF heavyweight title
35 Win 28–7   David Mauney KO 1 Mar 24, 1989   Louisville, Kentucky, U.S.
34 Loss 27–7   Joe Bugner UD 10 Jul 24, 1987   Entertainment Centre, Sydney, Australia
33 Win 27–6   James Broad MD 10 May 30, 1987   Las Vegas Hilton, Winchester, Nevada, U.S.
32 Win 26–6   Jerry Halstead KO 8 Nov 22, 1986   Las Vegas Hilton, Winchester, Nevada, U.S.
31 Loss 25–6   Mark Wills RTD 9 (10), 3:00 Jun 12, 1986   Forum, Inglewood, California, U.S.
30 Win 25–5   Funso Banjo DQ 8 (10) Apr 30, 1986   Picketts Lock Stadium, London, England
29 Loss 24–5   Buster Douglas UD 10 Jan 17, 1986   Omni Coliseum, Atlanta, Georgia, U.S.
28 Loss 24–4   Tony Tubbs UD 15 Apr 29, 1985   Memorial Auditorium, Buffalo, New York, U.S. Lost WBA heavyweight title
27 Win 24–3   Gerrie Coetzee KO 8 (15), 3:03 Dec 1, 1984   Superbowl, Sun City, Bophuthatswana Won WBA heavyweight title
26 Loss 23–3   David Bey UD 12 Aug 31, 1984   Riviera, Winchester, Nevada, U.S. Lost USBA heavyweight title
25 Loss 23–2   Tim Witherspoon MD 12 Mar 9, 1984   Las Vegas Convention Center, Winchester, Nevada, U.S. For vacant WBC heavyweight title
24 Win 23–1   Rick Kellar TKO 2 Oct 15, 1983   James L. Knight Convention Center, Miami, Florida, U.S.
23 Win 22–1   Renaldo Snipes UD 12 May 20, 1983   Dunes, Paradise, Nevada, U.S. Retained USBA heavyweight title
22 Win 21–1   Larry Frazier UD 10 Feb 12, 1983   Public Hall, Cleveland, Ohio, U.S.
21 Win 20–1   James Tillis TKO 8 (12), 0:43 Nov 26, 1982   Astrodome, Houston, Texas, U.S. Retained USBA heavyweight title
20 Loss 19–1   Trevor Berbick UD 10 Jun 11, 1982   Caesars Palace, Paradise, Nevada, U.S.
19 Win 19–0   Jimmy Young UD 12 May 2, 1982   Playboy Hotel and Casino, Atlantic City, New Jersey, U.S. Retained USBA heavyweight title
18 Win 18–0   Scott LeDoux TKO 4 (12), 0:10 Dec 11, 1981   Queen Elizabeth Sports Centre, Nassau, Bahamas Retained USBA heavyweight title
17 Win 17–0   George Chaplin SD 12 Aug 22, 1981   Steel Pier, Atlantic City, New Jersey, U.S. Retained USBA heavyweight title
16 Win 16–0   Alfredo Evangelista KO 2 (10), 0:40 Jun 12, 1981   Joe Louis Arena, Detroit, Michigan, U.S.
15 Win 15–0   Marty Monroe RTD 5 (12), 3:00 Apr 11, 1981   Concord Resort Hotel, Thompson, New York, U.S. Retained USBA heavyweight title
14 Win 14–0   Stan Ward RTD 7 (12), 3:00 Feb 7, 1981   Steel Pier, Atlantic City, New Jersey, U.S. Won vacant USBA heavyweight title
13 Win 13–0   Dave Johnson TKO 6 (10), 1:51 Oct 2, 1980   Madison Square Garden, New York City, New York, U.S.
12 Win 12–0   Leroy Boone TKO 6 (10) Sep 12, 1980   Louisville Gardens, Louisville, Kentucky, U.S.
11 Win 11–0   Larry Alexander KO 6 (10) May 16, 1980   Rupp Arena, Lexington, Kentucky, U.S.
10 Win 10–0   George Chaplin MD 10 Apr 5, 1980   Louisville Gardens, Louisville, Kentucky, U.S.
9 Win 9–0   Clayman Parker KO 1 (10), 3:09 Mar 8, 1980   The Aladdin, Paradise, Nevada, U.S.
8 Win 8–0   Victor Rodriguez KO 3 (8), 2:45 Feb 1, 1980   Louisville Gardens, Louisville, Kentucky, U.S.
7 Win 7–0   Ira Martin TKO 1 (6), 1:03 Dec 14, 1979   Convention Hall, Atlantic City, New Jersey, U.S.
6 Win 6–0   James Reid KO 1 (8), 1:52 Nov 24, 1979   Metropolitan Sports Center, Bloomington, Minnesota, U.S.
5 Win 5–0   Frank Brown TKO 3 (8), 0:50 Oct 18, 1979   Convention Hall, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, U.S.
4 Win 4–0   Oliver Philipps TKO 4 (8), 2:11 Sep 22, 1979   Memorial Sports Arena, Los Angeles, California, U.S.
3 Win 3–0   James Knox KO 2 (4) Aug 19, 1979   Metropolitan Sports Center, Bloomington, Minnesota, U.S.
2 Win 2–0   Jerry McIntyre KO 1 (4), 0:52 Jun 1, 1979   Commonwealth Convention Center, Louisville, Kentucky, U.S.
1 Win 1–0   Don Martin KO 2 (6), 0:36 Feb 16, 1979   Commonwealth Convention Center, Louisville, Kentucky, U.S.


  1. ^ Russian Boxers Meet Americans By Tim White (AP Sports Writer), Yuma Sun, November 14, 1975, p. 14.
  2. ^ a b Against Russians U.S. spirit 'high' for fight card By Steve Sneddon, Sports Editor, Reno Evening Gazette, December 8, 1977, p. 25.
  3. ^ "Greg Page's career:a timeline". Retrieved 2010-07-16.
  4. ^ PHIL BERGER, Special to The New York Times (1990-05-20). "New York Times 20 May 1990". Retrieved 2010-07-16.
  5. ^ "Ruddock beats Page to start new era". 1992-02-16. Retrieved 2010-07-16.[dead link]
  6. ^ Hugh McIlvanney (1994-10-03). "A Sudden Leap To The Top". Retrieved 2010-07-16.
  7. ^ "Former Heavyweight Champ Greg Page Passes at 50". Retrieved 2010-07-16.
  8. ^ "Battle of Aged". 1999-06-19. Retrieved 2010-07-16.
  9. ^ Adams, Jim (2005-06-17). "Prodigy Greg Page adapts to life with brain injury". Retrieved 2010-07-16.
  10. ^ "Greg Page Story Can't Be Forgotten". 2009-05-13. Retrieved 2010-07-16.
  11. ^ "Greg Page in the Fight of His Life". Retrieved 2010-07-16.
  12. ^ "Driven from the ring by injury, Page battles a new foe - his body". Retrieved 2010-07-16.
  13. ^ a b Kenning, Chris (2009-05-04). "Page remembered for tough fights in and out of the ring". Retrieved 2010-07-16.
  14. ^ "Former WBA Heavyweight Champion Greg Page in Jewish Hospital". Archived from the original on 2012-02-27. Retrieved 2010-07-16.
  15. ^ "Ex-heavyweight champ Page improving in Louisville hospital". 2006-02-27. Retrieved 2010-07-16.
  16. ^ "Ex-heavyweight champ out of hospital after falling ill". ESPN. Associated Press. 2006-12-26.
  17. ^ Martin, Douglas (April 28, 2009). "Greg Page, Heavyweight Champion, Dies at 50". The New York Times. Retrieved April 29, 2009.
  18. ^ "Ex-champ Greg Page slips from bed, dies". Retrieved 2010-07-16.

External linksEdit

Sporting positions
Amateur boxing titles
Marvin Stinson
U.S. heavyweight champion
1977, 1978
Tony Tubbs
Regional boxing titles
Title last held by
Mike Weaver
USBA heavyweight champion
February 7, 1981 – August 31, 1984
Succeeded by
World boxing titles
Preceded by WBA heavyweight champion
December 1, 1984 – April 29, 1985
Succeeded by
Tony Tubbs