List of world heavyweight boxing champions

  (Redirected from World Heavyweight Champion)
Map of countries, number of current and former world heavyweight boxing champions per country (as of February 2020). Note: interim titles, as well as WBA's secondary belts (Regular, Gold etc.) are not included

Current status of prominent championship titlesEdit

International Boxing Federation

World Boxing Association

  • Anthony Joshua is the organization's currently recognized 'super' world champion, having won the title on December 7, 2019 over Andy Ruiz Jr.
  • Manuel Charr is currently recognized as the organization's 'regular' world champion.[1] His next defence of this title is scheduled to be against WBA 'interim' champion Trevor Bryan. Agreement for the bout was reached on May 28, 2019, but details have not been announced.
  • Trevor Bryan is currently recognized as the organization's 'interim' world champion,[2] having being awarded that distinction on August 11, 2018 by defeating B.J. Flores. Why the WBA awarded an interim championship title when it already had active boxers holding its 'super' and 'regular' world championships is unclear. His next bout will be against WBA 'regular' champion, Manuel Charr for Charr's title, at which time win or lose his 'interim' championship will be vacated. Agreement for the bout was reached on May 28, 2019, but details have not been announced.

World Boxing Council

  • Deontay Wilder is the organization's currently recognized world champion.[3] His last defence of this title was a rematch against Luis Ortiz on November 23, 2019. winning by 7th round knockout. He is scheduled to meet former champion Tyson Fury in a rematch on February 22, 2020.
  • Dillian Whyte was recognized as the organization's 'interim' world champion having been awarded that distinction on July 20, 2019 by defeating Oscar Rivas via a 12 round unanimous decision. As with the WBA's championship title, at the time of Whyte's recognition as "interim" champion, their recognized world champion was not inactive, so why this recognition was bestowed is unclear. This recognition was suspended from July 30, 2019 to December 11, 2019, however, after it was reported a post-bout UKAD gathered urine sample "yielded an adverse finding." On December 6, 2019, UKAD exonerated Whyte of any wrongdoing and five days later the WBC announced it was reinstating Whyte as its 'interim' champion.

World Boxing Organization

There are also titles that aren't considered major but play a significant role in legitimizing the heavyweight champion:

The Ring

List of championsEdit

No. Champion Nationality Recognition Reign Began Reign Ended Title defenses Opponents Additional recognition Notes
1 John L. Sullivan
def. Dominick McCaffrey
  United States Universal August 29, 1885 September 7, 1892 0 0 25,4 First recognized heavweight champion
2 James J. Corbett   United States Universal September 7, 1892 March 17, 1897 1 1 5
3 Bob Fitzsimmons   United Kingdom Universal March 17, 1897 June 9, 1899 0 0 First three-division champion and lightest heavyweight
4 James J. Jeffries   United States Universal June 9, 1899 May 13, 1905 7 5 2,6
5 Marvin Hart
def. Jack Root
  United States Universal July 3, 1905 February 23, 1906 0 0 1
6 Tommy Burns   Canada Universal February 23, 1906 December 26, 1908 11 8
7 Jack Johnson   United States Universal December 26, 1908 April 5, 1915 8 8 First black heavyweight champion 7
8 Jess Willard   United States Universal April 5, 1915 July 4, 1919 1 1
9 Jack Dempsey   United States Universal July 4, 1919 July 2, 1921 3 3
9 Jack Dempsey
def. Georges Carpentier
  United States NBA July 2, 1921 July 24, 1922 0 0 The Ring
awarded the title in 1922
9 Jack Dempsey   United States NBA and NYSAC July 24, 1922 September 23, 1926 2 2 The Ring
10 Gene Tunney   United States NBA and NYSAC September 23, 1926 July 31, 1928 2 2 The Ring 2
11 Max Schmeling
def. Jack Sharkey
  Germany NBA and NYSAC June 12, 1930 January 7, 1931 0 0 The Ring 1,8
11 Max Schmeling   Germany NBA and IBU January 7, 1931 June 21, 1932 1 1 The Ring 1,10 Longest living champion
12 Jack Sharkey   United States NBA and NYSAC, IBU June 21, 1932 June 29, 1933 0 0 The Ring
13 Primo Carnera   Italy NBA and NYSAC, IBU June 29, 1933 June 14, 1934 2 2 The Ring 1,10 Most career wins by KO
14 Max Baer   United States NBA and NYSAC, IBU June 14, 1934 June 13, 1935 0 0 The Ring 9
15 James J. Braddock   United States NBA and NYSAC, IBU June 13, 1935 June 22, 1937 0 0 The Ring
16 Joe Louis   United States NBA and NYSAC, IBU June 22, 1937 March 1, 1949 26 21 The Ring 2 Longest single reign
Most title fight wins
17 Ezzard Charles
def. Jersey Joe Walcott
  United States NBA June 22, 1949 September 27, 1950 3 3 - 1,10 Most career wins
- Lee Savold   United States IBU June 6, 1950 June 16, 1951 0 0 - 1,10 Most fights and most losses
17 Ezzard Charles
def. Joe Louis
  United States NBA and NYSAC September 27, 1950 June 16, 1951 5 5 The Ring 1,10
17 Ezzard Charles   United States NBA and NYSAC, IBU June 16, 1951 July 18, 1951 0 0 The Ring
18 Jersey Joe Walcott   United States NBA and NYSAC July 18, 1951 September 23, 1952 1 1 The Ring
19 Rocky Marciano   United States NBA and NYSAC September 23, 1952 April 27, 1956 6 5 The Ring 2 Retired undefeated
20 Floyd Patterson
def. Archie Moore
  United States NBA and NYSAC November 30, 1956 June 26, 1959 4 4 The Ring 1,11
21 Ingemar Johansson   Sweden NBA and NYSAC June 26, 1959 June 20, 1960 0 0 The Ring
22 Floyd Patterson (Second reign)   United States NBA and NYSAC June 20, 1960 September 25, 1962 2 2 The Ring
23 Sonny Liston   United States NYSAC and WBA September 25, 1962 July 22, 1963 1 1 The Ring
23 Sonny Liston   United States NYSAC, WBA and WBC July 22, 1963 February 25, 1964 0 0 The Ring
24 Cassius Clay   United States NYSAC, WBA and WBC February 25, 1964 June 19, 1964 0 0 The Ring 12
24 Muhammad Ali   United States NYSAC and WBC June 19, 1964 February 6, 1967 8 8 The Ring
25 Ernie Terrell
def. Eddie Machen
  United States WBA March 5, 1965 February 6, 1967 2 2 - 1
24 Muhammad Ali   United States NYSAC, WBA and WBC February 6, 1967 April 29, 1967 1 1 The Ring Unified NYSAC, WBA and WBC titles.13
26 Joe Frazier
def. Buster Mathis
  United States NYSAC March 4, 1968 February 16, 1970 5 5 - 1
27 Jimmy Ellis
def. Jerry Quarry
  United States WBA April 27, 1968 February 16, 1970 1 1 - 1,14
26 Joe Frazier
def. Jimmy Ellis
  United States WBA and WBC February 16, 1970 January 22, 1973 4 4 The Ring
def. Muhammad Ali on Mar 8, 1971
Unified WBA and WBC titles.15
28 George Foreman   United States WBA and WBC January 22, 1973 October 30, 1974 2 2 The Ring 1,10 Oldest living champion
29 Muhammad Ali (Second reign)   United States WBA and WBC October 30, 1974 February 15, 1978 10 10 The Ring
30 Leon Spinks   United States WBA and WBC February 15, 1978 March 18, 1978 0 0 The Ring 3
30 Leon Spinks   United States WBA March 18, 1978 September 15, 1978 0 0 The Ring
31 Ken Norton
awarded the title
  United States WBC March 18, 1978 June 9, 1978 0 0 - 16
32 Larry Holmes   United States WBC June 9, 1978 December 11, 1983 16 16 The Ring
def. Muhammad Ali on Oct 2, 1980
2
33 Muhammad Ali (Third reign)   United States WBA September 15, 1978 April 27, 1979 0 0 The Ring 2
34 John Tate
def. Gerrie Coetzee
  United States WBA October 20, 1979 March 31, 1980 0 0 - 1
35 Mike Weaver   United States WBA March 31, 1980 December 10, 1982 2 2 -
36 Michael Dokes   United States WBA December 10, 1982 September 23, 1983 1 1 -
37 Gerrie Coetzee   South Africa WBA September 23, 1983 December 1, 1984 0 0 -
32 Larry Holmes
awarded the title
  United States IBF December 11, 1983 September 21, 1985 3 3 The Ring 17
38 Tim Witherspoon
def. Greg Page
  United States WBC March 9, 1984 August 31, 1984 0 0 - 1
39 Pinklon Thomas   United States WBC August 31, 1984 March 22, 1986 1 1 -
40 Greg Page   United States WBA December 1, 1984 April 29, 1985 0 0 -
41 Tony Tubbs   United States WBA April 29, 1985 January 17, 1986 0 0 -
42 Michael Spinks   United States IBF September 21, 1985 February 19, 1987 2 2 The Ring 3
43 Tim Witherspoon (Second reign)   United States WBA January 17, 1986 December 12, 1986 1 1 -
44 Trevor Berbick   Jamaica
  Canada
WBC March 22, 1986 November 22, 1986 0 0 -
45 Mike Tyson   United States WBC November 22, 1986 March 7, 1987 1 1 - Youngest to ever win the heavyweight championship
46 James "Bonecrusher" Smith   United States WBA December 12, 1986 March 7, 1987 0 0 -
45 Mike Tyson   United States WBA and WBC March 7, 1987 August 1, 1987 2 2 - Unified WBA and WBC titles.
47 Tony Tucker
def. Buster Douglas
  United States IBF May 30, 1987 August 1, 1987 0 0 - 1 Shortest reign
45 Mike Tyson   United States IBF, WBA and WBC August 1, 1987 February 11, 1990 6 6 The Ring
def. Michael Spinks on Jun 27, 1988
Unified IBF, WBA and WBC titles.
48 Francesco Damiani
def. Johnny du Plooy
  Italy WBO May 6, 1989 January 11, 1991 1 1 - 1
49 James "Buster" Douglas   United States IBF, WBA and WBC February 11, 1990 October 25, 1990 0 0
50 Evander Holyfield   United States IBF, WBA and WBC October 25, 1990 November 13, 1992 3 3 Most reigns with four
51 Ray Mercer   United States WBO January 11, 1991 December 24, 1991 1 1 - 3
52 Michael Moorer
def. Bert Cooper
  United States WBO May 15, 1992 February 3, 1993 0 0 - 1,2
53 Riddick Bowe   United States IBF, WBA and WBC November 13, 1992 December 14, 1992 0 0 2
53 Riddick Bowe   United States IBF and WBA December 14, 1992 November 6, 1993 2 2
54 Lennox Lewis
awarded the title
  United Kingdom
  Canada
WBC December 14, 1992 September 24, 1994 3 3 - 18
55 Tommy Morrison
def. George Foreman
  United States WBO June 7, 1993 October 29, 1993 1 1 - 1
56 Michael Bentt   United Kingdom
  United States
WBO October 29, 1993 March 19, 1994 0 0 -
57 Evander Holyfield (Second reign)   United States IBF and WBA November 6, 1993 April 22, 1994 0 0
58 Herbie Hide   United Kingdom WBO March 19, 1994 March 11, 1995 0 0 -
59 Michael Moorer (Second reign)   United States IBF and WBA April 22, 1994 November 5, 1994 0 0
60 Oliver McCall   United States WBC September 24, 1994 September 2, 1995 1 1 -
61 George Foreman (Second reign)   United States IBF and WBA November 5, 1994 March 4, 1995 0 0 3
61 George Foreman   United States IBF March 4, 1995 June 28, 1995 1 1 2
62 Riddick Bowe (Second reign)   United States WBO March 11, 1995 May 1, 1996 1 1 - 3
63 Bruce Seldon
def. Tony Tucker
  United States WBA April 8, 1995 September 7, 1996 1 1 - 1
64 Frank Bruno   United Kingdom WBC September 2, 1995 March 16, 1996 0 0 -
65 Mike Tyson (Second reign)   United States WBC March 16, 1996 September 7, 1996 0 0 -
66 Michael Moorer (Third reign)
def. Axel Schulz
  United States IBF June 22, 1996 November 8, 1997 2 2 - 1,19
67 Henry Akinwande
def. Jeremy Williams
  United Kingdom WBO June 29, 1996 February 17, 1997 2 2 - 1,2
65 Mike Tyson   United States WBA and WBC September 7, 1996 September 24, 1996 0 0 - Unified WBA and WBC titles.2
65 Mike Tyson   United States WBA September 24, 1996 November 9, 1996 0 0 -
68 Evander Holyfield (Third reign)   United States WBA November 9, 1996 November 8, 1997 2 2 -
69 Lennox Lewis (Second reign)
def. Oliver McCall
  United Kingdom
  Canada
WBC February 7, 1997 November 13, 1999 6 5 1
70 Herbie Hide (Second reign)
def. Tony Tucker
  United Kingdom WBO June 28, 1997 June 26, 1999 2 2 - 1
68 Evander Holyfield   United States IBF and WBA November 8, 1997 November 13, 1999 2 2 - Unified IBF and WBA titles.
71 Vitali Klitschko   Ukraine WBO June 26, 1999 April 1, 2000 2 2 -
69 Lennox Lewis   United Kingdom
  Canada
IBF, WBA and WBC November 13, 1999 April 29, 2000 0 0 Unified IBF, WBA and WBC titles.3
72 Chris Byrd   United States WBO April 1, 2000 October 14, 2000 0 0 -
69 Lennox Lewis   United Kingdom
  Canada
IBF and WBC April 29, 2000 April 22, 2001 3 3
73 Evander Holyfield (Fourth reign)
def. John Ruiz
  United States WBA August 12, 2000 March 3, 2001 0 0 - 1
74 Wladimir Klitschko   Ukraine WBO October 14, 2000 March 8, 2003 5 5 - Longest combined reign
Most opponents beaten in title fights
75 John Ruiz   United States WBA March 3, 2001 March 1, 2003 2 2 -
76 Hasim Rahman   United States IBF and WBC April 22, 2001 November 17, 2001 0 0
77 Lennox Lewis (Third reign)   United Kingdom
  Canada
IBF and WBC November 17, 2001 September 5, 2002 1 1 The Ring
awarded the title in 2002
2
77 Lennox Lewis   United Kingdom
  Canada
WBC September 5, 2002 February 6, 2004 1 1 The Ring 2
78 Chris Byrd (Second reign)
def. Evander Holyfield
  United States IBF December 14, 2002 April 22, 2006 4 4 - 1
79 Roy Jones Jr.   United States WBA March 1, 2003 February 20, 2004 0 0 - 2
80 Corrie Sanders   South Africa WBO March 8, 2003 October 9, 2003 0 0 - 2
81 John Ruiz (Second reign)
def. Hasim Rahman for interim title
  United States WBA February 20, 2004 December 17, 2005 3 3 - 20
82 Lamon Brewster
def. Wladimir Klitschko
  United States WBO April 10, 2004 April 1, 2006 3 3 - 1
83 Vitali Klitschko (Second reign)
def. Corrie Sanders
  Ukraine WBC April 24, 2004 November 9, 2005 1 1 The Ring 1,2
84 Hasim Rahman (Second reign)
def. Monte Barrett for interim title
  United States WBC November 9, 2005 August 12, 2006 1 1 - 21
85 Nikolai Valuev   Russia WBA December 17, 2005 April 14, 2007 3 3 - 1,10 Tallest and heaviest champion
86 Siarhei Liakhovich   Belarus WBO April 1, 2006 November 4, 2006 0 0 -
87 Wladimir Klitschko (Second reign)   Ukraine IBF April 22, 2006 February 23, 2008 4 4 -
88 Oleg Maskaev   United States
  Russia
WBC August 12, 2006 March 8, 2008 1 1 -
89 Shannon Briggs   United States WBO November 4, 2006 June 2, 2007 0 0 -

Most first round knockouts

90 Ruslan Chagaev   Uzbekistan WBA April 14, 2007 June 20, 2009 2 2 - 22
91 Sultan Ibragimov   Russia WBO June 2, 2007 February 23, 2008 1 1 -
87 Wladimir Klitschko   Ukraine IBF and WBO February 23, 2008 July 2, 2011 6 6 The Ring
def. Ruslan Chagaev on Jun 20, 2009
Unified IBF and WBO titles.
92 Samuel Peter   Nigeria WBC March 8, 2008 October 11, 2008 0 0 -
93 Nikolai Valuev (Second reign)
def. John Ruiz
  Russia WBA August 30, 2008 November 7, 2009 1 1 - 1,22
94 Vitali Klitschko (Third reign)   Ukraine WBC October 11, 2008 December 15, 2013 9 9 - 2
95 David Haye   United Kingdom WBA November 7, 2009 July 2, 2011 2 2 -
87 Wladimir Klitschko   Ukraine IBF, WBA "Super" and WBO July 2, 2011 November 28, 2015 8 7 The Ring Unified IBF, WBA and WBO titles.
- Alexander Povetkin
def. Ruslan Chagaev
  Russia WBA "Regular" August 27, 2011 October 5, 2013 4 4 - 1,23
96 Bermane Stiverne
def. Chris Arreola
  Canada WBC May 10, 2014 January 17, 2015 0 0 - 1
- Ruslan Chagaev (Second reign)
def. Fres Oquendo
  Uzbekistan WBA "Regular" July 6, 2014 March 5, 2016 1 1 - 1
97 Deontay Wilder   United States WBC January 17, 2015 Present 10 8 -
98 Tyson Fury   United Kingdom IBF, WBA "Super" and WBO November 28, 2015 December 8, 2015 0 0 The Ring 3
98 Tyson Fury   United Kingdom WBA "Super" and WBO December 8, 2015 October 12, 2016 0 0 The Ring 2
99 Charles Martin
def. Vyacheslav Glazkov
  United States IBF January 16, 2016 April 9, 2016 0 0 - 1
- Lucas Browne   Australia WBA "Regular" March 5, 2016 May 12, 2016 0 0 - 24
100 Anthony Joshua   United Kingdom IBF April 9, 2016 April 29, 2017 3 3 -
- Ruslan Chagaev
awarded the title
  Uzbekistan WBA "Regular" May 12, 2016 July 25, 2016 0 0 - 3
101 Joseph Parker
def. Andy Ruiz Jr.
  New Zealand WBO December 10, 2016 March 31, 2018 2 2 - 1
100 Anthony Joshua
def. Wladimir Klitschko
  United Kingdom IBF and WBA "Super" April 29, 2017 March 31, 2018 2 2 - Unified IBF and WBA titles.1
- Manuel Charr
def. Alexander Ustinov
  Lebanon WBA "Regular" November 25, 2017 Present 0 0 - 1
100 Anthony Joshua   United Kingdom IBF, WBA "Super", WBO and IBO March 31, 2018 June 1, 2019 1 1 - Unified IBF, WBA and WBO tiles.
102 Andy Ruiz Jr.   United States
  Mexico
IBF, WBA "Super", WBO and IBO June 1, 2019 December 7, 2019 0 0 -
103 Anthony Joshua (second reign)   United Kingdom IBF, WBA "Super", WBO and IBO December 7, 2019 present 0 0 -

FootnotesEdit

  1. Won vacant championship title.
  2. Voluntarily relinquished championship title.
  3. Championship recognition withdrawn by sanctioning organization upon his refusal to fight an opponent of the organization's designation.
  4. In 1882, Sullivan defeated Paddy Ryan to win the bare-knuckle championship of America. A lack of legitimate challengers elsewhere gradually resulted in Sullivan earning worldwide recognition. On August 29, 1885, he defeated Dominick McCaffrey in a bout described as "the Marquess of Queensberry glove contest for the championship of the world."
  5. Corbett announced his retirement from boxing in 1895, nominating Steve O'Donnell as his successor. As tradition demanded the title be won in the ring, O'Donnell was matched against Peter Maher on November 11, 1895 at Maspeth, New York. Maher won via first-round knockout, but the public generally didn't accept Maher and Maher himself expressed a desire to fight Corbett for the "real" title. In Maher's next bout, Bob Fitzsimmons defeated him via first-round knockout on February 21, 1896. Fitzsimmons in turn was defeated by Tom Sharkey of Dundalk on December 2, 1896, in a contest billed as for the heavyweight title. Corbett announced his return to the ring shortly thereafter, at which time the championship claims of Maher, Fitzsimmons, and Sharkey were for the most part dismissed. Sharkey's title claims lapsed when he was defeated by Jeffries in May 1898.
  6. Jeffries announced his retirement, relinquishing the title and promoting a match between Marvin Hart and Jack Root for the championship. Jeffries returned to the ring to challenge Jack Johnson.
  7. The British National Sporting Club withdrew its recognition of Johnson as champion when he refused to defend his title against the British champion William "Iron" Hague. The NSC matched Hague with Canadian Sam Langford for its title on May 24, 1909. Langford won via fourth-round knockout but never pursued a championship claim.
  8. Schmeling earned championship recognition by defeating Jack Sharkey by controversial disqualification. The New York State Athletic Commission withdrew its recognition of Schmeling when he refused to grant Sharkey an immediate rematch. The NYSAC did not recognize a champion until Sharkey defeated Schmeling in 1932.
  9. In late 1934, the International Boxing Union (IBU) ordered Baer to defend his title against European champion Pierre Charles of Belgium. When Baer refused, the IBU sanctioned a bout between Charles and American George Godfrey for their title on October 2, 1935. Godfrey won via fifteen-round decision but never pursued a championship claim. The IBU ultimately recognized Baer's successor James J. Braddock as champion.
  10. Two months after Louis' retirement announcement, the International Boxing Union sanctioned a bout between British champion Bruce Woodcock and American Lee Savold for its version of the title. The bout was not staged until June 1950, however, due to delays caused by injuries suffered by Woodcock in an automobile accident. Meanwhile, Ezzard Charles defeated Jersey Joe Walcott to win the vacant National Boxing Association championship title. Savold defeated Woodcock in four rounds to win the IBU title, while Charles gained New York State Athletic Commission recognition and wide public acclaim as champion upon defeating former champion Joe Louis in September 1950. On June 15, 1951, Joe Louis defeat Savold via sixth-round knockout, after which the IBU withdrew its recognition of Savold and proclaimed Ezzard Charles as champion.
  11. Following Marciano's retirement, Patterson was matched against Tommy "Hurricane" Jackson in a championship eliminator on June 8, 1956. Winning via controversial split decision, Patterson then faced light heavyweight titleholder Archie Moore for the vacant title. Upon defeating Moore, Patterson fought (and defeated) Jackson a second time on July 29, 1957.
  12. The World Boxing Association withdrew their championship recognition of Clay (by then known as Muhammad Ali) upon agreeing to an immediate rematch against former champion Sonny Liston, in violation of WBA rules. The newly founded World Boxing Council and other sanctioning groups continued to recognize Ali as champion.
  13. The World Boxing Association, World Boxing Council, New York State Athletic Commission and others withdrew their championship recognition of Ali following his refusal to be inducted into the United States Army subsequent to his conscription.
  14. To fill its vacant championship title, the World Boxing Association organized a single-elimination tournament involving eight of their ranked contenders (Joe Frazier, who was ranked No. 2, declined to participate): Oscar Bonavena, Jimmy Ellis, Leotis Martin, Karl Mildenberger, two-time former champion Floyd Patterson, Jerry Quarry, Thad Spencer, and former WBA champion Ernie Terrell. In first round matches, Ellis defeated Martin, Quarry defeated Patterson, Spencer defeated Terrell, and Bonavena defeated Mildenberger. In the semi-finals, Ellis defeated Bonavena while Quarry defeated Spencer; and Ellis defeated Quarry for the championship title. Frazier, meanwhile, was matched against Buster Mathis for a championship recognized by the New York State Athletic Commission together with the commissions of Illinois, Maine, Massachusetts and Pennsylvania. Similar "world" championship recognition was bestowed upon him by the Texas Athletic Commission following a victory over Dave Zyglewicz on April 22, 1969.
  15. Frazier defeated Ellis to unify the heavyweight championship, but did not gain universal public acclaim as champion until defeating Muhammad Ali on March 8, 1971.
  16. In an unprecedented move, upon withdrawing its recognition of Leon Spinks as champion, the World Boxing Council immediately recognized Ken Norton as champion, based on an earlier victory over Jimmy Young. As a condition of being named champion, Norton was ordered to face the WBC's new mandatory challenger, Larry Holmes within 120 days.
  17. Holmes relinquished his World Boxing Council championship and accepted championship recognition bestowed by the newly organized International Boxing Federation.
  18. Following its 1978 precedent, upon withdrawing championship recognition from Riddick Bowe, the World Boxing Council immediately awarded championship recognition to Lennox Lewis, on the basis of his victory in an October 31, 1992 "championship eliminator" over Donovan Ruddock.
  19. Following its withdrawal of recognition from George Foreman, the International Boxing Federation sanctioned a December 9, 1995 match between FFrancoi and Axel Schulz for its championship. Botha won the bout by split decision, but the bout result and Botha's championship title were vacated after Botha's post-fight drug test revealed he had taken illegal anabolic steroids. A subsequent bout between Schulz and Michael Moorer was sanctioned for the IBF championship.
  20. Upon defeating John Ruiz, Roy Jones, Jr. simultaneously held the World Boxing Association's heavyweight and light heavyweight titles. At his request, the WBA suspended its rule prohibiting simultaneous title holding. It later declared Jones its "Champion in Recess," and sanctioned a December 13, 2003 bout between Ruiz and Hasim Rahman for its "interim" championship. Ruiz won the bout. On February 20, 2004, Jones relinquished his heavyweight title to resume boxing as a light heavyweight, at which point Ruiz was elevated to full championship recognition. On April 30, 2005, Ruiz was defeated by James Toney in a championship defense, but post-fight drug testing determined Toney had taken Nandrolone, an anabolic steroid. The bout's result was subsequently changed to a "no contest," whereupon the WBA reinstated Ruiz as champion.
  21. Following repeated injuries to champion Vitali Klitschko, the World Boxing Council sanctioned an August 13, 2005 bout between Hasim Rahman and Monte Barrett for its "interim" championship. Rahman won the bout, and when Klitschko relinquished his title three months later, the WBC elevated Rahman to full championship recognition.
  22. Following repeated injuries which prevented him from defending his title, the World Boxing Association designated Chagaev a "Champion in Recess," sanctioning an August 30, 2008 bout between former champions John Ruiz and Nikolai Valuev for its "interim" title; a bout won by Valuev. Upon his recovery however, Chagaev opted to face Wladimir Klitschko rather than Valuev, whereupon the WBA withdrew championship recognition.
  23. The World Boxing Association modified its championship structure, creating a new "Super Champion" status to be awarded to champions who hold multiple titles simultaneously. Now subordinated to this was the status of "World Champion," commonly referred to as the "Regular" champion. The organization then sanctioned a bout between Povetkin and former champion Ruslan Chagaev for this "regular" title. Povetkin's reign as the WBA's "regular champion" ended upon a loss to "Super Champion" Wladimir Klitschko, at which point the "regular" title was vacant.
  24. Browne defeated Ruslan Chagaev for the World Boxing Association's "regular" championship title, but Browne subsequently tested positive for Clenbuterol, a banned substance. Following confirmation of the positive result, the WBA withdrew its recognition of Browne's "regular" championship.
  25. On October 29, 1877 a fight between British fighters Tom Allen and Tompkin Gilbert at the Sadler's Wells Theatre, London was billed as for the World heavyweight title under Marquess of Queensberry Rules. Allen won in seven rounds.

List of combined reignsEdit

As of March 5, 2018.

Keys:

     Active title reign
     Reign has ended
WBO heavyweight title bouts before August 1997 are not included[5]
Pos. Name Combined reign Days as champion Number of reigns Title recognition Cumulative title wins Opponents beaten
1.   Wladimir Klitschko 12 years, 0 months, 0 days 4 382 2 IBF, WBA, WBO 25 23
2.   Joe Louis 11 years, 8 months, 8 days 4 270 1 NYSAC, NBA 27 22
3.   Muhammad Ali 9 years, 5 months, 5 days 3 443 3 NYSAC, WBC, WBA 22 21
4.   Lennox Lewis 8 years, 5 months, 13 days 3 086 3 WBC, IBF, WBA 15 15
5.   Vitali Klitschko 7 years, 5 months, 28 days 2 735 3 WBO, WBC 15 15
6.   Larry Holmes 7 years, 3 months, 12 days 2 661 1 WBC, IBF 20 20
7.   Jack Dempsey 7 years, 2 months, 19 days 2 638 1 NYSAC, NBA 6 6
8.   John L. Sullivan 7 years, 0 months, 10 days 2 566 1 Universal 5 5
9.   Jack Johnson 6 years, 3 months, 11 days 2 292 1 Universal 7 7
10.   Evander Holyfield 6 years, 1 month, 1 day 2 223 4 WBA, WBC, IBF 11 10
11.   James J. Jeffries 5 years, 11 months, 4 days 2 156 1 Universal 8 6
12.   Deontay Wilder 4 years, 10 months, 25 days 1 790 1 WBC 10 8
13.   Joe Frazier 4 years, 10 months, 18 days 1 785 1 NYSAC, WBA, WBC 10 10
14.   Floyd Patterson 4 years, 10 months, 0 days 1 765 2 NYSAC, NBA 8 7
15.   James J. Corbett 4 years, 6 months, 10 days 1 652 1 Universal 2 2
16.   Jess Willard 4 years, 2 months, 29 days 1 551 1 Universal 2 2
17.   Chris Byrd 3 years, 10 months, 22 days 1 421 2 IBF, WBO 5 5
18.   Mike Tyson 3 years, 10 months, 16 days 1 415 2 WBA, WBC, IBF 12 11
19.   John Ruiz 3 years, 9 months, 21 days 1 390 2 WBA 4 4
20.   Rocky Marciano 3 years, 7 months, 5 days 1 312 1 NYSAC, NBA 7 5

List of individual reignsEdit

The list includes The Ring belt. Career total time as champion (for multiple time champions) does not apply.

Keys:

     Active Title Reign
     Reign has ended
The WBO heavyweight title bouts before August 1997 are not included
Pos. Name Title Reign Title recognition Successful Defenses Opponents beaten
1.   Joe Louis 11 years, 8 months, 8 days Universal 26 21
2.   Wladimir Klitschko 9 years, 7 months and 6 days IBF (+WBA, WBO, The Ring) 18 17
3.   Larry Holmes 7 years, 3 months, 12 days WBC-to-IBF (+The Ring) 19 19
4.   Jack Dempsey 7 years, 2 months, 19 days Universal 5 5
5.   John L. Sullivan 7 years, 0 months, 9 days Universal 5 5
6.   Jack Johnson 6 years, 3 months, 10 days Universal 8 8
7.   Muhammad Ali 5 years, 11 months, 9 days The Ring, (+WBA, WBC stripped) 9 9
8.   James J. Jeffries 5 years, 11 months, 4 days Universal 7 6
9.   Vitali Klitschko 5 years, 2 months, 4 days WBC 9 9
10.   Deontay Wilder 5 years, 1 month and 2 days WBC 10 8
11.   Joe Frazier 4 years, 10 months, 18 days NYSAC (+WBA, WBC) 9 9
12.   James J. Corbett 4 years, 6 months, 10 days Universal 1 1
13.   Jess Willard 4 years, 2 months, 29 days Universal 1 1
14.   Lennox Lewis 4 years, 2 months, 15 days WBC (+IBF, WBA stripped, The Ring) 9 8
15.   Rocky Marciano 3 years, 11 months, 29 days Universal 6 5
16.   Chris Byrd 3 years, 4 months, 8 days IBF 4 4
17.   Mike Tyson 3 years, 2 months, 20 days WBC (+WBA, IBF, The Ring) 9 9
18.   Anthony Joshua 3 years, 1 month and 23 days IBF (+WBA, WBO) 6 6
19.   George Foreman 3 years, 0 months, 17 days (+WBA, IBF stripped) 2 2
20.   Evander Holyfield 3 years, 0 months, 4 days WBA (+IBF) 4 4

By nationalityEdit

Country Total Boxers by Name
  United States 56 John L. Sullivan, James J. Corbett, James J. Jeffries, Marvin Hart, Jack Johnson, Jess Willard, Jack Dempsey, Gene Tunney, Jack Sharkey, Max Baer, James J. Braddock, Joe Louis, Ezzard Charles, Lee Savold, Jersey Joe Walcott, Rocky Marciano, Floyd Patterson, Sonny Liston, Muhammad Ali, Ernie Terrell, Joe Frazier, Jimmy Ellis, George Foreman, Leon Spinks, Ken Norton, Larry Holmes, John Tate, Mike Weaver, Michael Dokes, Tim Witherspoon, Pinklon Thomas, Greg Page, Tony Tubbs, Michael Spinks, Mike Tyson, James Smith, Tony Tucker, Buster Douglas, Evander Holyfield, Ray Mercer, Michael Moorer, Riddick Bowe, Tommy Morrison, Michael Bentt, Oliver McCall, Bruce Seldon, Chris Byrd, John Ruiz, Hasim Rahman, Roy Jones Jr., Lamon Brewster, Shannon Briggs, Oleg Maskaev*, Deontay Wilder, Charles Martin, Andy Ruiz Jr.*
  United Kingdom 8 Bob Fitzsimmons, Lennox Lewis*, Herbie Hide, Frank Bruno, Henry Akinwande, David Haye, Tyson Fury, Anthony Joshua
  Canada 4 Lennox Lewis*, Tommy Burns, Trevor Berbick*, Bermane Stiverne
  Russia 3 Nikolai Valuev, Oleg Maskaev*, Sultan Ibragimov
  Italy 2 Primo Carnera, Francesco Damiani
  South Africa 2 Gerrie Coetzee, Corrie Sanders
  Ukraine 2 Vitali Klitschko, Wladimir Klitschko
  Germany 1 Max Schmeling
  Sweden 1 Ingemar Johansson
  Belarus 1 Siarhei Liakhovich
  Uzbekistan 1 Ruslan Chagaev
  Nigeria 1 Samuel Peter
  New Zealand 1 Joseph Parker
  Mexico 1 Andy Ruiz Jr.*
  Jamaica 1 Trevor Berbick*

See alsoEdit

Further readingEdit

  • Florio, John; Shapiro, Ouisie (2013). One Punch from the Promised Land: Leon Spinks, Michael Spinks, and the Myth of the Heavyweight Title. Lyons Press. p. 279. ISBN 978-0-7627-8300-7.

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ "Boxing champions list". ESPN.com. February 23, 2015.
  2. ^ "Boxing champions list". ESPN.com. February 23, 2015.
  3. ^ "Boxing champions list". ESPN.com. February 23, 2015.
  4. ^ https://www.telegraph.co.uk/boxing/2018/02/01/tyson-fury-stripped-ring-magazine-heavyweight-title/
  5. ^ James B. Roberts, Alexander G. Skutt: The Boxing Register: International Boxing Hall of Fame Official Record Book, p. 331–32. The record of Ricardo Lopez indicates his opponent Alex Sanchez as WBO "World Champion" on August 23, 1997, meanwhile Michael Carbajal's opponent Josue Camacho (fought on July 15, 1994) didn't receive the same recognition, thus suggesting that WBO title hadn't been viewed by IBHOF as a major title prior to (at least) August 1997, when Herbie Hide (won the title on June 28, 1997) was WBO heavyweight champion

SourcesEdit