Open main menu

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.[1]

Michael Moorer
Statistics
Real nameMichael Lee Moorer
Nickname(s)Double M
Weight(s)
Height6 ft 2 in (188 cm)
Reach78 in (198 cm)
NationalityAmerican
Born (1967-11-12) November 12, 1967 (age 51)
Brooklyn, New York City, New York, U.S.
StanceSouthpaw
Boxing record
Total fights57
Wins52
Wins by KO40
Losses4
Draws1

Since retiring from the sport, Moorer has worked as a boxing trainer. In 2009, he worked alongside Freddie Roach at the Wild Card gym in Los Angeles.[2]

BackgroundEdit

Moorer was born in Brooklyn, New York and raised in Monessen, Pennsylvania, a small mill town in southwestern 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.[3]

Amateur careerEdit

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.

Professional careerEdit

Light HeavyweightEdit

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 1989, he retained the title six times, beating Freddie Delgado, Frankie Swindell, Mike Sedillo and former WBA champion Leslie Stewart, among others.

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.

HeavyweightEdit

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.

Second 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 thus technically 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.

ComebackEdit

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.

Personal lifeEdit

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.[4]

Professional boxing recordEdit

Professional record summary
57 fights 52 wins 4 losses
By knockout 40 3
By decision 12 1
Draws 1
No. Result Record Opponent Type Round, time Date Location Notes
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 was cut from an 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, IBF, and lineal heavyweight titles
35 Win 35–0   Evander Holyfield MD 12 Apr 22, 1994   Caesars Palace, Paradise, Nevada, U.S. Won WBA, IBF, and lineal 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.

See alsoEdit

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ "Michael Moorer". Cyber Boxing Zone. Retrieved November 20, 2016.
  2. ^ "Roach fires Moorer--report". ABS-CBN News. ABS-CBN Corporation. June 22, 2009. Retrieved October 6, 2016.
  3. ^ http://tss.ib.tv/articles-of-2005/1979-michael-moorer-a-paradoxical-hall-of-fame-career
  4. ^ http://tss.ib.tv/articles-of-2005/1979-michael-moorer-a-paradoxical-hall-of-fame-career

External linksEdit

Sporting positions
Amateur boxing titles
Previous:
Tim Littles
U.S. light middleweight champion
1986
Next:
Joe Bir
Regional boxing titles
Vacant
Title last held by
Lance Whitaker
WBANABA heavyweight champion
December 9, 2004 – March 2005
Vacated
Vacant
Title next held by
Taurus Sykes
Vacant
Title last held by
James Toney
WBC Continental Americas
heavyweight champion

December 9, 2004 – April 2005
Vacated
Vacant
Title next held by
DaVarryl Williamson
World boxing titles
Inaugural champion WBO light heavyweight champion
December 3, 1988 – April 1991
Vacated
Vacant
Title next held by
Leeonzer Barber
Vacant
Title last held by
Ray Mercer
WBO heavyweight champion
May 15, 1992 – February 2, 1993
Vacated
Vacant
Title next held by
Tommy Morrison
Preceded by
Evander Holyfield
WBA heavyweight champion
April 22, 1994November 5, 1994
Succeeded by
George Foreman
IBF heavyweight champion
April 22, 1994 – November 5, 1994
Lineal heavyweight champion
April 22, 1994 – November 5, 1994
Vacant
Title last held by
George Foreman
stripped
IBF heavyweight champion
June 22, 1996 – November 8, 1997
Succeeded by
Evander Holyfield