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Michael Lee Moorer (born November 12, 1967) is an American former professional boxer who competed from 1988 to 2008. He is a multiple-time world champion in two weight classes, having held the WBO light heavyweight title from 1988 to 1991; the WBO heavyweight title from 1992 to 1993; the unified WBA, IBF and lineal heavyweight titles in 1994; and the IBF heavyweight title again from 1996 to 1997. He became the world's first southpaw heavyweight champion after defeating Evander Holyfield.
Moorer in 2009
|Height||6 ft 2 1/2 in|
|Reach||78 in (198 cm)|
|Born||November 12, 1967|
Brooklyn, New York City, New York, U.S.
|Wins by KO||40|
Moorer was born in Brooklyn and raised in the small town of Monessen, Pennsylvania. From an early age, Moorer began playing football and was raised by a single mother, who noticed Moorer's unusual hyperactivity. At age 10, Moorer's, grandfather, a former New York Golden Gloves Champion who sparred with greats such as Archie Moore, encouraged Moorer to begin training at age 11. Moorer is naturally right-handed, but fought the entirety of his career as a southpaw. Moorer graduated from Monessen High School in 1987, where he starred in football as a linebacker and tight end.
As his amateur career developed, Moorer moved to Detroit, Michigan to train with the legendary Emanuel Steward. In 1986, Moorer was a National Champion for the 156 lb (light middleweight) weight class. At Steward's Kronk Gym, Moorer was known for beating professionals while still an amateur. Moorer also won a bronze medal at the Goodwill Games, and finished his amateur career with a record of 48-16.
Moorer had a fast rise through the professional boxing ranks. He debuted on March 4, 1988, knocking out Adrian Riggs in the first round. Before the year's end, he was undefeated in eleven bouts (winning all by way of early round knockouts) and fighting for the world title for the first time. He acquired the newly created WBO light heavyweight title with a five-round knockout of Ramzi Hassan.
In 1990, he retained the title three times before the end of the year, beating Mario Melo and former Michael Spinks challenger Jim McDonald, among others.
1991 saw Moorer move up to the heavyweight division. He rolled through the competition en route to securing an opportunity to fight for the vacant WBO heavyweight championship the following year against Bert Cooper. Moorer stopped Cooper in the fifth round after both fighters were down and hurt during the bout.
He did not defend the lesser regarded WBO heavyweight belt. Moorer and trainer Emanuel Steward parted ways after the Cooper fight. Moorer eventually joined Lou Duva's team, and was trained by Georgie Benton for three fights in 1993, including a 10-round decision win over former champion James "Bonecrusher" Smith.
Moorer then parted ways with the Duvas and Benton, and hired New York-based trainer Teddy Atlas in late 1993. Moorer closed the year with a 10-round decision over Mike Evans.
Unified heavyweight championEdit
On April 22, 1994, Moorer challenged Evander Holyfield for the lineal, IBF, and WBA title belts. In round 2 Holyfield sent Moorer down on the canvas, but Moorer overcame and went on to win a majority decision. As a result, he became the first-ever southpaw heavyweight champion.
In his first defense of those belts, on November 5, 1994, Moorer faced 45-year-old George Foreman, who lost his last fight for the vacant WBO heavyweight title to Tommy Morrison. For nine rounds, Moorer easily outboxed him, hitting and moving away, while Foreman moving forward, seemingly unable to "pull the trigger" on his punches. Moorer was ahead on all three judges' scorecards entering the 10th round, when Foreman hit him with a number of long-range jabs. Then, suddenly, a short right hand caught Moorer on the tip of his chin, gashing open his bottom lip, and he collapsed to the canvas. Moorer was knocked out and lost the world championship. He also lost his undefeated record. Foreman, at age 45, became the oldest fighter ever to win the world heavyweight title.
The following year, Moorer re-grouped by winning against fringe contender Melvin Foster. Meanwhile, Foreman retained the title with a close and controversial decision against German fighter Axel Schulz.
Because of the controversial nature of the Foreman-Schulz bout, the IBF ordered Foreman to travel to Germany for a rematch, but Foreman refused, choosing to leave the IBF belt vacant instead. South African Francois Botha travelled to Germany instead and beat Schulz with another close decision to claim the title, but he was stripped of it when he tested positive for illegal substances shortly after.
Third heavyweight title reignEdit
Moorer was then given the opportunity to fight Schulz for the vacant crown in Berlin. On June 22, 1996, Moorer won the IBF heavyweight crown once again, beating Schulz by a 12-round split decision.
He became a three-time heavyweight champion; WBO (1992), WBA/IBF (1994) and IBF (1996–1997). When Moorer held the WBO heavyweight title, it wasn't considered an authentic heavyweight title. Ironically, Moorer has always been recognized as a former light heavyweight champion despite only ever holding the WBO title at that weight.
Moorer's first defense came against Botha on November 9, 1996. In a brutal one-sided bout, Moorer, leading on the cards going into the 12th, ended with a flourish, knocking Botha out with 18 seconds left in the bout.
In March 1997, Moorer retained his belt with a 12-round decision over previously undefeated Vaughn Bean before parting ways with trainer Teddy Atlas, with whom he'd been experiencing increasing tension since the beginning of their professional relationship. He replaced him with Freddie Roach.
Holyfield vs. Moorer IIEdit
On November 8, Moorer lost his IBF title in a unification match with WBA champion Evander Holyfield. Moorer was knocked down five times before ringside doctor Flip Homansky advised referee Mitch Halpern to stop the bout in round eight.
After this, he retired from boxing for three years before returning with a knockout of journeyman Lorenzo Boyd. Moorer had begun drinking heavily and weighed 270 pounds. During his comeback, he won three more fights, then seemingly retired again when he was knocked out only 30 seconds into round one by David Tua on August 17, 2002. However, he returned to the ring once again on March 29, 2003, beating Otis Tisdale on points over 10 rounds. On August 23, 2003, he beat Brazil's Rodolfo Lobo by knockout in only 64 seconds.
After a layoff of almost a year, he returned on July 3, 2004, losing a ten-round unanimous decision to Eliseo Castillo in Miami, Florida. In December of that year, Moorer rallied from a severe deficit on the scorecards to hand former cruiserweight champion Vassiliy Jirov his first knockout loss. He continued fighting, winning all of his bouts against limited opposition. His last fight was a KO win over Shelby Gross in 2008. Following the fight, Moorer retired from professional boxing.
Moorer was arrested in 1989 for taking part in a brawl in Charleroi, Pennsylvania.
In 1991, just days after his win over Alex Stewart, Moorer was arrested for assaulting a police officer. Moorer had reportedly been intoxicated at the time of his arrest. The officer he punched suffered a broken jaw. Moorer later was placed on probation and settled the case out of court.
Professional boxing recordEdit
|57 fights||52 wins||4 losses|
|57||Win||52–4–1||Shelby Gross||KO||1 (10), 0:32||Feb 8, 2008||Sheikh Rashid Hall, Dubai, UAE|
|56||Win||51–4–1||Roderick Willis||SD||10||Oct 31, 2007||José Miguel Agrelot Coliseum, San Juan, Puerto Rico|
|55||Win||50–4–1||Rich Boruff||TKO||1 (8), 1:34||Aug 16, 2007||Figali Convention Center, Panama City, Panama|
|54||Win||49–4–1||Sedreck Fields||UD||10||Mar 16, 2007||Hard Rock Live, Hollywood, Florida, U.S.|
|53||Win||48–4–1||Cliff Couser||KO||1 (10), 1:36||Dec 9, 2006||Hard Rock Live, Hollywood, Florida, U.S.|
|52||Win||47–4–1||Vassiliy Jirov||TKO||9 (12), 2:08||Dec 9, 2004||Pechanga Resort & Casino, Temecula, California, U.S.||Won vacant WBA–NABA and WBC Continental Americas heavyweight titles|
|51||Loss||46–4–1||Eliseo Castillo||UD||10||Jul 3, 2004||American Airlines Arena, Miami, Florida, U.S.|
|50||Win||46–3–1||Jose Arimatea da Silva||TKO||7 (10)||Jan 17, 2004||Seminole Casino, Coconut Creek, Florida, U.S.|
|49||Win||45–3–1||Rogério Lobo||KO||1 (10), 1:04||Aug 23, 2003||Seminole Casino, Coconut Creek, Florida, U.S.|
|48||Win||44–3–1||Otis Tisdale||UD||10||Mar 29, 2003||Seminole Casino, Coconut Creek, Florida, U.S.|
|47||Loss||43–3–1||David Tua||KO||1 (10), 0:30||Aug 17, 2002||Etess Arena, Atlantic City, New Jersey, U.S.|
|46||Win||43–2–1||Robert Davis||UD||10||Feb 16, 2002||Mohegan Sun Arena, Montville, Connecticut, U.S.|
|45||Win||42–2–1||Terry Porter||TKO||4 (10), 1:11||Dec 9, 2001||Great Plains Coliseum, Lawton, Oklahoma, U.S.|
|44||Draw||41–2–1||Dale Crowe||TD||5 (10), 0:35||Jul 27, 2001||Soaring Eagle Casino, Mount Pleasant, Michigan, U.S.||TD after Crowe cut from accidental head clash|
|43||Win||41–2||Terrence Lewis||TKO||2 (10), 2:42||Jan 12, 2001||Lucky Star Casino, Concho, Oklahoma, U.S.|
|42||Win||40–2||Lorenzo Boyd||TKO||4 (9), 1:22||Nov 17, 2000||Memorial Auditorium, Burlington, Iowa, U.S.|
|41||Loss||39–2||Evander Holyfield||RTD||8 (12), 3:00||Nov 8, 1997||Thomas & Mack Center, Paradise, Nevada, U.S.||Lost IBF heavyweight title;|
For WBA heavyweight title
|40||Win||39–1||Vaughn Bean||MD||12||Mar 29, 1997||Las Vegas Hilton, Winchester, Nevada, U.S.||Retained IBF heavyweight title|
|39||Win||38–1||Francois Botha||TKO||12 (12), 0:18||Nov 9, 1996||MGM Grand Garden Arena, Paradise, Nevada, U.S.||Retained IBF heavyweight title|
|38||Win||37–1||Axel Schulz||SD||12||Jun 22, 1996||Westfalenstadion, Dortmund, Germany||Won vacant IBF heavyweight title|
|37||Win||36–1||Melvin Foster||UD||10||May 13, 1995||ARCO Arena, Sacramento, California, U.S.|
|36||Loss||35–1||George Foreman||KO||10 (12), 2:03||Nov 5, 1994||MGM Grand Garden Arena, Paradise, Nevada, U.S.||Lost WBA, and IBF heavyweight titles|
|35||Win||35–0||Evander Holyfield||MD||12||Apr 22, 1994||Caesars Palace, Paradise, Nevada, U.S.||Won WBA, and IBF heavyweight titles|
|34||Win||34–0||Mike Evans||UD||10||Dec 4, 1993||Convention Center, Reno, Nevada, U.S.|
|33||Win||33–0||James Pritchard||TKO||3 (10), 2:46||Jun 22, 1993||Etess Arena, Atlantic City, New Jersey, U.S.|
|32||Win||32–0||Frankie Swindell||TKO||3 (10), 1:42||Apr 27, 1993||The Palace, Auburn Hills, Michigan, U.S.|
|31||Win||31–0||James Smith||UD||10||Feb 27, 1993||Showboat, Atlantic City, New Jersey, U.S.|
|30||Win||30–0||Billy Wright||TKO||2 (10), 1:26||Nov 13, 1992||Thomas & Mack Center, Paradise, Nevada, U.S.|
|29||Win||29–0||Bert Cooper||TKO||5 (12), 2:21||May 15, 1992||Etess Arena, Atlantic City, New Jersey, U.S.||Won vacant WBO heavyweight title|
|28||Win||28–0||Everett Martin||UD||10||Mar 17, 1992||The Palace, Auburn Hills, Michigan, U.S.|
|27||Win||27–0||Mike White||UD||10||Feb 1, 1992||Caesars Palace, Paradise, Nevada, U.S.|
|26||Win||26–0||Bobby Crabtree||RTD||1 (10), 3:00||Nov 23, 1991||Omni Coliseum, Atlanta, Georgia, U.S.|
|25||Win||25–0||Alex Stewart||TKO||4 (10), 1:54||Jul 27, 1991||The Scope, Norfolk, Virginia, U.S.|
|24||Win||24–0||Levi Billups||TKO||3 (10), 2:49||Jun 25, 1991||The Palace, Auburn Hills, Michigan, U.S.|
|23||Win||23–0||Terry Davis||TKO||2 (10), 1:52||Apr 19, 1991||Convention Hall, Atlantic City, New Jersey, U.S.|
|22||Win||22–0||Danny Stonewalker||TKO||8 (12), 0:11||Dec 15, 1990||Civic Arena, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, U.S.||Retained WBO light heavyweight title|
|21||Win||21–0||Jim MacDonald||TKO||3 (10), 0:55||Aug 21, 1990||The Palace, Auburn Hills, Michigan, U.S.|
|20||Win||20–0||Mario Oscar Melo||KO||1 (12), 1:52||Apr 28, 1990||Etess Arena, Atlantic City, New Jersey, U.S.||Retained WBO light heavyweight title|
|19||Win||19–0||Marcellus Allen||RTD||9 (12), 3:00||Feb 3, 1990||Convention Hall, Atlantic City, New Jersey, U.S.||Retained WBO light heavyweight title|
|18||Win||18–0||Mike Sedillo||TKO||6 (12), 2:07||Dec 12, 1989||The Palace, Auburn Hills, Michigan, U.S.||Retained WBO light heavyweight title|
|17||Win||17–0||Jeff Thompson||KO||1 (12), 1:46||Nov 16, 1989||Steel Pier, Atlantic City, New Jersey, U.S.||Retained WBO light heavyweight title|
|16||Win||16–0||Leslie Stewart||TKO||8 (12), 2:05||Jun 25, 1989||Convention Hall, Atlantic City, New Jersey, U.S.||Retained WBO light heavyweight title|
|15||Win||15–0||Freddie Delgado||TKO||1 (12), 2:39||Apr 22, 1989||The Palace, Auburn Hills, Michigan, U.S.||Retained WBO light heavyweight title|
|14||Win||14–0||Frankie Swindell||TKO||6 (12), 2:50||Feb 19, 1989||High School Gym, Monessen, Pennsylvania, U.S.||Retained WBO light heavyweight title|
|13||Win||13–0||Victor Claudio||TKO||2 (12)||Jan 14, 1989||The Palace, Auburn Hills, Michigan, U.S.||Retained WBO light heavyweight title|
|12||Win||12–0||Ramzi Hassan||TKO||5 (12), 2:37||Dec 3, 1988||Brook Park, Ohio, U.S.||Won inaugural WBO light heavyweight title|
|11||Win||11–0||Glenn Kennedy||KO||1, 0:36||Nov 4, 1988||Las Vegas Hilton, Winchester, Nevada, U.S.|
|10||Win||10–0||Carl Williams||TKO||1, 1:15||Oct 17, 1988||Tucson, Arizona, U.S.|
|9||Win||9–0||Jorge Suero||TKO||2||Oct 7, 1988||The Palace, Auburn Hills, Michigan, U.S.|
|8||Win||8–0||Jordan Keepers||TKO||2||Aug 12, 1988||The Eagles Club, Milwaukee, Wisconsin, U.S.|
|7||Win||7–0||Terrence Walker||RTD||5 (10), 0:01||Aug 6, 1988||Showboat Hotel and Casino, Las Vegas, Nevada, U.S.|
|6||Win||6–0||LaVelle Stanley||TKO||2||Jun 25, 1988||Cobo Arena, Detroit, Michigan, U.S.|
|5||Win||5–0||Keith McMurray||TKO||2 (4)||Jun 6, 1988||Las Vegas Hilton, Winchester, Nevada, U.S.|
|4||Win||4–0||Dennis Fikes||TKO||2||May 10, 1988||Phoenix, Arizona, U.S.|
|3||Win||3–0||Brett Zwierzynski||KO||1 (6)||Apr 29, 1988||Detroit, Michigan, U.S.|
|2||Win||2–0||Bill Lee||TKO||1||Mar 25, 1988||Cobo Arena, Detroit, Michigan, U.S.|
|1||Win||1–0||Adrian Riggs||TKO||1 (4), 2:26||Mar 4, 1988||Las Vegas, Nevada, U.S.|
- "Michael Moorer". Cyber Boxing Zone. Retrieved November 20, 2016.
- "Roach fires Moorer--report". ABS-CBN News and Current Affairs. June 22, 2009. Retrieved October 6, 2016.
- Boxing record for Michael Moorer from BoxRec
- CBZ Profile
- Michael Moorer: Then and now at Pittsburgh Tribune-Review
|Amateur boxing titles|
| U.S. light middleweight champion
|Regional boxing titles|
Title last held byLance Whitaker
| WBA–NABA heavyweight champion
December 9, 2004 – March 2005
Title next held byTaurus Sykes
Title last held byJames Toney
| WBC Continental Americas
December 9, 2004 – April 2005
Title next held byDaVarryl Williamson
|World boxing titles|
|Inaugural champion|| WBO light heavyweight champion
December 3, 1988 – April 1991
Title next held byLeeonzer Barber
Title last held byRay Mercer
| WBO heavyweight champion
May 15, 1992 – February 2, 1993
Title next held byTommy Morrison
| WBA heavyweight champion
April 22, 1994 – November 5, 1994
| IBF heavyweight champion|
April 22, 1994 – November 5, 1994
Title last held byGeorge Foreman
| IBF heavyweight champion
June 22, 1996 – November 8, 1997