Lewis, Lennox

Lewis, Lennox
in full Lennox Claudius Lewis

born Sept. 2, 1965, London, Eng.

British boxer.

His professional career began in 1989 in England. He won the World Boxing Council (WBC) heavyweight title in 1992, lost it in 1994, and recaptured it in 1997. In 1999 he faced American Evander Holyfield, who held the heavyweight titles of the World Boxing Association (WBA) and the International Boxing Federation (IBF). In a controversial decision, the fight was called a draw. In the rematch that same year Lewis emerged as the undisputed champion, thereby unifying the heavyweight title. (The IBF and WBA portions of the title were later taken from Lewis because of disputes concerning mandatory fights, but he retained the WBC title and was still considered the undisputed champion by many in boxing.) In his 2002 bout with American Mike Tyson, Lewis knocked Tyson out in the eighth round.

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▪ 2000

      With his unanimous decision over Evander Holyfield in a bout on Nov. 13, 1999, in Las Vegas, Nev., boxer Lennox Lewis became the first British undisputed world heavyweight champion of the 20th century. Although his performance in the history-making bout was not a memorable one, Lewis was content to escape with the victory—this time. Earlier in the year, he had fought and apparently beaten Holyfield in a match at New York City's Madison Square Garden, but in a decision that prompted outrage from the fans in attendance and an investigation by boxing's governing bodies, the fight was called a draw.

      Lewis was born on Sept. 2, 1965, in London. As a boy, he moved to Kitchener, Ont., with his mother, and by his teens he was boxing regularly at a police gym. By the age of 15, Lewis was an exceptional fighter. An all-around athlete, he also played fullback for his high-school football team and forward for the basketball team and was a shot-putter on the track team. He focused on boxing, however, and developed into one of Canada's best amateur fighters. After losing in the quarterfinals of the 1984 Olympic Games to American Tyrell Biggs, Lewis set his sights on the 1988 Olympics in Seoul, S.Kor., where he beat American Riddick Bowe for the gold medal.

      Lewis's professional career began in 1989. He returned to his native England, where he began racking up victories. Undefeated in 21 professional fights, the 1.95-m (6-ft 5-in), 104-kg (230-lb) Lewis met Donovan (“Razor”) Ruddock in October 1992 and knocked him out in the second round. This appeared to set up a showdown with Bowe, who had become the undisputed heavyweight champ, but fearing the challenge, Bowe's manager set the fighter up with other, easier opponents in order to cash in on his status as the champ. This move led the World Boxing Council (WBC) to strip Bowe of his title, which was awarded to Lewis. Lewis defended the title three times before losing to American Oliver McCall in London in September 1994—the only loss of his professional career. In February 1997 Lewis beat McCall in a rematch to regain the WBC title. He defended his title four more times during the following two years before the March 1999 fight against Holyfield, who held the titles of the World Boxing Association and the International Boxing Federation. Those in attendance were sure that Lewis had won the fight, and the announcement of the draw elicited boos from the crowd. Ironically, many observers thought that Holyfield staged the better fight in the November rematch, but Lewis landed more punches and emerged, finally, as the undisputed champ.

Anthony G. Craine

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▪ British boxer
in full  Lennox Claudius Lewis 
born September 2, 1965, London, England
 first British boxer to hold the undisputed heavyweight world championship since Bob Fitzsimmons (Fitzsimmons, Robert) held the title in 1899.

      Lewis was born to Jamaican parents, spent his early childhood in England, and then moved with his mother to Canada. An all-around athlete in high school, he excelled in several sports but soon focused on boxing and developed into one of Canada's best amateur fighters. At the 1988 Olympic Games in Seoul, South Korea, Lewis beat American Riddick Bowe to earn the gold medal in the superheavyweight division.

      Lewis returned to his native England in 1989 to pursue a professional career. He was undefeated in his first 22 professional fights and earned a title bout with Bowe, who had become the heavyweight champion. The 6-foot 5-inch (1.96-metre), 230-pound (104.3-kg) Lewis was exceptionally large for a boxer, and his size posed special problems for the average heavyweight. Not surprisingly, Bowe and his manager chose to pursue lucrative fights against easier opponents. The World Boxing Council (WBC) stripped Bowe of his title and awarded it to Lewis, who defended the title three times before losing in an upset to American Oliver McCall in London in September 1994.

      For the next few years Lewis won all his fights and worked to secure another championship fight. In 1997 American boxer Mike Tyson (Tyson, Mike) held the WBC heavyweight title but was unwilling to face the much taller Lewis. When a court order demanded that Tyson defend his crown against Lewis, he surrendered the title. On February 7, 1997, Lewis again faced McCall for the vacant WBC crown and won by technical knockout in the fifth round after McCall refused to fight. A unification bout in March 1999 at New York City's Madison Square Garden against American Evander Holyfield (Holyfield, Evander), who held the heavyweight titles of the World Boxing Association (WBA) and the International Boxing Federation (IBF) ended in a controversial draw. The November rematch in Las Vegas, Nevada, was another closely scored fight, but Lewis landed more punches and emerged, finally, as the undisputed champion of the heavyweight division.

      In April 2000 Lewis was stripped of the WBA portion of his title after a legal dispute with the promoter Don King (King, Don) prevented a timely defense of his title against an acceptable opponent. That same year Lewis went on to defeat Michael Grant, Franz Botha, and David Tua to retain his IBF and WBC heavyweight titles. In a surprising outcome in April 2002, Lewis lost to underdog Hasim Rahman in a fifth-round knockout. In the November rematch Lewis reclaimed his title from Rahman, knocking him out in the fourth round. After much legal and business wrangling, a bout with Tyson was finally set for June 8, 2002, in Memphis, Tennessee. Lewis knocked Tyson out in the eighth round. In the fall of 2002, Lewis relinquished the IBF portion of his heavyweight title. While still recognized as the legitimate heavyweight world champion, Lewis announced his retirement in 2004 with a record of 41 wins (32 by knockout), 2 losses, and 1 draw.

      Lewis was awarded the Member of the British Empire (MBE) in 1999 and the Commander of the Order of the British Empire (CBE) in 2002. In 2008 he was selected for induction into the International Boxing Hall of Fame.

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Universalium. 2010.

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Look at other dictionaries:

  • Lewis, Lennox — p. ext. Lennox Claudius Lewis (n. 2 sep. 1965, Londres, Inglaterra). Boxeador británico. Comenzó su carrera profesional en 1989, en Inglaterra. Ganó el título mundial de la categoría peso pesado del Consejo Mundial de Boxeo (CMB) en 1992, lo… …   Enciclopedia Universal

  • Lennox Claudius Lewis — Lennox Lewis Daten Geburtsname Lennox Claudius Lewis Kampfname(n) The Lion …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Lennox Lewis — Daten Geburtsname …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Lennox — bezeichnet die folgenden Orte: Lennox (Kalifornien) Lennox (South Dakota) Lennox, Picton und Nueva, chilenische Insel Lennox (Schottland), Region in Schottland Lennox ist der Familienname folgender Personen: Annie Lennox (* 1954), schottische… …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Lennox Lewis — Nombre Lennox Cla …   Wikipedia Español

  • Lennox Lewis — Pour les articles homonymes, voir Lewis. Lennox Lewis Fiche d’identité Nom complet Lennox Claudius Lewis Surnom …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Lewis — El nombre Lewis puede hacer referencia a las siguientes personas: ● Arthur Lewis, Sir William Arthur Lewis, economista británico (Santa Lucía, 1915 Barbados, 1991). Premio Nobel de economía en 1979. ● Carl Lewis, Carlton McHinley Lewis, atleta… …   Enciclopedia Universal

  • lewis — /looh is/, n. a device for lifting a dressed stone, consisting of a number of pieces fitting together to fill a dovetailed recess cut into the stone. [1730 40; perh. after the surname of the inventor] * * * (as used in expressions) Ferdinand… …   Universalium

  • Lewis — /looh is/, n. 1. C(ecil) Day, 1904 72, British poet: poet laureate after 1968. 2. C(live) S(taples) /stay peuhlz/, ( Clive Hamilton ), 1898 1963, English novelist and essayist. 3. Gilbert Newton, 1875 1946, U.S. chemist. 4. (Harry) Sinclair, 1885 …   Universalium

  • Lewis — Cette page d’homonymie répertorie les différents sujets et articles partageant un même nom. Lewis à l origine est un prénom anglais correspondant en français à Louis. Son origine est mal connue : anglicisme de Louis, dérive de l allemand… …   Wikipédia en Français

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