STARS AND STRIPES

Mark Bre­land was just one of many Amer­i­can Olympic gold medal­lists to then win a world ti­tle as a pro

Boxing News - - THE PANEL -

1. MUHAM­MAD ALI

Later known as ‘The Great­est’, Muham­mad Ali’s jour­ney be­gan with a gold medal as a light-heavy­weight at the 1960 Olympics. He then de­feated Sonny Lis­ton in 1964 to be­come world heavy­weight cham­pion and starred in some of the most iconic heavy­weight fights of all time.

2. RAY LEONARD

The gifted Leonard was a light-wel­ter­weight gold medal­list at the 1976 Olympics in Mon­treal. He then be­came the world wel­ter­weight cham­pion with a win over Wil­fred Benítez and se­cured his le­gacy with vic­to­ries against the likes of Du­ran, Ha­gler and Hearns.

3. GE­ORGE FORE­MAN

Hard-hit­ting Fore­man won his gold medal at the 1968 Olympics in Mex­ico City and then fa­mously blitzed Joe Fra­zier in two rounds to be­come world heavy­weight cham­pion in 1973.

4. JOE FRA­ZIER

Fra­zier had his gold medal mo­ment at the 1964 Olympics in Tokyo and won the world heavy­weight ti­tle in 1970 with a fourth-round stoppage of Jimmy El­lis. Less than a year later, he beat Muham­mad Ali in one of the di­vi­sion’s great 15-rounders.

5. FLOYD PAT­TER­SON

Com­pet­ing as a mid­dleweight, Pat­ter­son won his Olympic gold medal at the 1952 Games in Helsinki. He then beat Archie Moore to win the world heavy­weight ti­tle four years later.

6. PERNELL WHI­TAKER

‘Sweet Pea’ Whi­taker grabbed his light­weight gold medal at the 1984 Olympics in Los An­ge­les. He’d go on to win world ti­tles as a light­weight, ju­nior­wel­ter­weight, wel­ter­weight and su­per-wel­ter­weight.

7. OS­CAR DE LA HOYA

De La Hoya was a light­weight when he won his gold medal at the 1992 Olympics in Barcelona. As a pro, he se­cured world ti­tles as a ju­nior-light­weight, light­weight, light-wel­ter­weight, wel­ter­weight, light­mid­dleweight and mid­dleweight.

8. MICHAEL SPINKS

Spinks won an Olympic gold medal as a mid­dleweight in 1976 and reigned as world light-heavy­weight cham­pion from 1981 to 1985. He then moved to heavy­weight, win­ning the IBF ti­tle from Larry Holmes.

9. AN­DRE WARD

Ward was the light-heavy­weight gold medal­list at the 2004 Olympics in Athens and would go on to win a bevy of world ti­tles as a pro su­per-mid­dle and light-heavy.

10. LEON SPINKS

A light-heavy­weight gold medal­list at the 1976 Olympics in Mon­treal, Spinks, two years later, de­feated Muham­mad Ali in just his eighth pro fight.

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