Roman Greenberg [see page 32] isn’t the only heavyweight contender to fall short of high expectations
1. IKE IBEABUCHI
Known as ‘The President’, Ibeabuchi appeared to represent the future of the division during the late nineties, as he went toe-to-toe with David Tua and knocked out Chris Byrd. A lengthy prison sentence, however, meant the Nigerian’s pro career was cut short.
2. ODLANIER SOLIS
Solis was a three-time world champion as an amateur and the 2004 Olympic gold medallist. Yet, as a pro, he flattered to deceive, was knocked out in a round by Vitali Klitschko, twice beaten by Tony Thompson, and never came close to the same kind of success.
3. MICHAEL BENNETT
Bennett won the World Amateur Championships in 1999 and was the US team captain at the 2000 Olympics. He turned pro in 2001 as a small heavyweight and was knocked out four times in 14 fights. He retired in 2003.
4. AUDLEY HARRISON
Harrison, the 2000 Olympic gold medallist at superheavyweight, was considered Britain’s heir apparent to Lennox Lewis. He won the EBU title and fought for the WBA title, but promised so much more.
5. DUANE BOBICK
Bobick’s outstanding amateur career included wins over Teófilo Stevenson at the 1971 Pan American Games and Larry Holmes en route to a spot on the 1972 US Olympic team. He won 38 consecutive fights as a pro before Ken Norton knocked him out inside a minute.
6. DAVID IZON
Nigerian Izon scooped the heavyweight silver medal at the 1992 Olympics, turned pro the following year, won plenty of fights in France, and was then outhustled by talented journeyman Maurice Harris over eight rounds.
7. DENIS BOYTSOV
A decorated amateur with a record of 115-15, Boytsov won 33 fights pro fights in a row, was compared to Mike Tyson, but then lost to Alex Leapai in 2013.
8. DOMINIC GUINN
Dubbed America’s next great heavyweight hope during a 24-fight unbeaten run, Guinn eventually came unstuck against Monte Barrett in 2004.
9. DAVID DEFIAGBON
Defiagbon won gold for Nigeria as a welter at the 1990 Commonwealth Games and then won silver for Canada as a heavyweight at the 1996 Olympics. As a pro, he won 21 fights and then lost a decision to Oleg Maskaev.
10 DAVID RODRIGUEZ
Though softly matched, Rodriguez romped to 36-0 as a pro, with 35 knockouts to his name, before a knife attack curtailed his progress. After that, he was upset first by Darnell Wilson and then by Raymond Ochieng.