|Height||6 ft 3+1⁄2 in (192 cm)|
|Reach||78 in (198 cm)|
|Born||December 27, 1957|
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, U.S.
|Wins by KO||38|
Tim Witherspoon (born December 27, 1957) is an American former professional boxer who competed from 1979 to 2003. He was a two-time world heavyweight champion, having held the WBC title in 1984, and the WBA title in 1986. He beat Heavyweight World Champions Greg Page, James Smith, Tony Tubbs, Frank Bruno and Cruiserweight World Champions Alfonzo Ratliff and Al Cole. He is best known for his fight against undefeated Heavyweight World Champion Larry Holmes in which he lost by Split decision. Witherspoon also worked as a regular sparring partner for Muhammad Ali.
Witherspoon had six amateur bouts, losing the last to Marvis Frazier on decision after getting knocked down.
Making his professional debut with a first-round TKO over Joe Adams on October 30, 1979, Witherspoon quickly rose through the ranks. In 1981, he participated in his first high-profile fight, knocking out future world cruiserweight champion Alfonzo Ratliff, after which he was signed by Don King. Witherspoon was a sparring partner of Ali as he was training to fight Larry Holmes and Trevor Berbick. Ali also gave Witherspoon his complimentary ring alias of "Terrible" Tim Witherspoon.
In 1982, he was matched with Renaldo Snipes, who had just given champion Larry Holmes a fair challenge (and knocked Holmes down), and outpointed him over 10 rounds, setting up his own challenge to Holmes.
On May 20, 1983, Witherspoon would have his first attempt at earning a world title by taking on the recognized top man in the division World Boxing Council champion Larry Holmes at the Dunes Hotel in Las Vegas. Witherspoon gave Holmes all he could handle, including rocking him badly in the ninth round, before losing a disputed twelve round split decision.
He returned later in the year to outpoint Floyd "Jumbo" Cummings, who had drawn with Joe Frazier in Smokin' Joe's last fight, and win the NABF title with a first-round knockout of James "Quick" Tillis.
In December 1983, Holmes relinquished his WBC title rather than defend against Greg Page, and chose to accept that of the newly formed IBF (International Boxing Federation).[ citation needed ]
Witherspoon was matched with Page for the vacant title on March 9, 1984. Page, in constant war with promoter Don King, turned up overweight and was outpointed.[ citation needed ]
Witherspoon's reign as champion would not be long however, as soon he himself was in constant war with King, and on August 31 of that year he was outpointed by Pinklon Thomas via majority decision.[ citation needed ]
In 1985 Witherspoon regained his NABF belt by beating James Broad in two rounds and made a successful twelve round defense against James "Bonecrusher" Smith in his first defense of the belt. This earned him another chance at a heavyweight title and he signed to fight reigning WBA champion Tony Tubbs on January 17, 1986 in Atlanta. Witherspoon won a close fight by majority decision, winning by only one point on one of the scorecards and three on another with one even, to become champion for a second time.
In his first defense of his newly won championship, Witherspoon traveled to London and fought a young up-and-coming English heavyweight and future world champion Frank Bruno at Wembley Stadium, as part of the heavyweight unification series. In the eleventh round of a scheduled fifteen, Witherspoon recorded a technical knockout and did something he had not done when he was champion the first time: make a successful defense of the title after winning it. After defeating Bruno, a rematch with Tony Tubbs loomed but Tubbs pulled out of the fight.
Needing to make a title defense, Witherspoon accepted a second fight with Bonecrusher Smith. Since dropping a lopsided decision in their first matchup (losing every round but one on all three scorecards) Smith had fought four bouts and recorded three wins, all against fringe contenders and journeymen.[ citation needed ] The fight was scheduled for December 12, 1986 at Madison Square Garden and Witherspoon a heavy favorite against the 17-5 Smith.[ citation needed ] With fifty seconds remaining in the first round, Witherspoon hit the canvas a third time and Rivera ended the proceedings. At ringside, HBO commentators Barry Tompkins, Larry Merchant, and Sugar Ray Leonard expressed disbelief at the outcome, with all three calling the bout a major upset.[ citation needed ]
Following the end his second title reign, Witherspoon spent years in litigation against Don King.[ citation needed ] In 1991 won the USBA heavyweight title by defeating fellow contender Carl "The Truth" Williams but lost a points decision to Everett Martin.[ citation needed ] Ring magazine called this inexplicable loss the low point of his career.[ citation needed ]
In 1993 Don King settled out of court and paid Witherspoon a million dollars. By 1994 Witherspoon had won five fights in a row by knockout.[ citation needed ] Aged 38 he was signed by HBO and matched in high-profile fights with cruiserweight champion Al Cole and the Cuban amateur Jorge Luis González, both of whom he defeated.[ citation needed ] Later in the year he was matched with Ray Mercer but lost a 10-round decision.[ citation needed ]
After that loss Witherspoon laid off a year, and when he came back he was outpointed by Larry Donald on HBO, and, in 1998, lost a close decision when outworked by New Zealander Jimmy Thunder before travelling to Poland to be outpointed by Andrew Golota.[ citation needed ]
The 43-year-old Witherspoon resurfaced in 2001, knocking out the prospect David Bostice in one round, outpointing Cuban southpaw contender Eliecer Castillo and Syrian Ahmed Abdin, before his revival was ended by Lou Savarese, who stopped him in five rounds.[ citation needed ]
Witherspoon also competed in Cedric Kushner's 2003 Thunderbox Heavyweight Tournament, "Fistful of Dollars," but lost in the opening stages.[ citation needed ]
Witherspoon resides near Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, where he trains boxers, including his son, lightweight Tim Witherspoon Jr. and many others. He has also trained Light Heavyweight champion Clinton Woods in the U.K.
In 2014, Witherspoon published his book with the help of British entrepreneur Kevin Baker and ghost writer Ryan Danes.
|69 fights||55 wins||13 losses|
|69||Loss||55–13–1||Brian Nix||SD||10||Mar 15, 2003||45 years, 78 days||Grand Casino, Gulfport, Mississippi, U.S.|
|68||Loss||55–12–1||Lou Savarese||TKO||5 (12), 2:42||Sep 22, 2002||44 years, 269 days||Table Mountain Casino, Friant, California, U.S.||For vacant WBO Inter-Continental heavyweight title|
|67||Win||55–11–1||Ahmed Abdin||UD||10||May 18, 2002||44 years, 142 days||Silver Star Hotel & Casino, Choctaw, Mississippi, U.S.|
|66||Win||54–11–1||Darroll Wilson||KO||2 (10), 1:02||Mar 10, 2002||44 years, 73 days||Green Valley Ranch, Henderson, Nevada, U.S.|
|65||Win||53–11–1||Ed White||TKO||1, 1:10||Jan 18, 2002||44 years, 22 days||Entertainment & Sports Arena, Raleigh, North Carolina, U.S.|
|64||Win||52–11–1||Cleveland Woods||KO||1 (10), 2:30||Jul 29, 2001||43 years, 214 days||Palace Indian Gaming Center, Lemoore, California, U.S.|
|63||Loss||51–11–1||Monte Barrett||SD||10||Jun 28, 2001||43 years, 183 days||Turning Stone Resort Casino, Verona, New York, U.S.|
|62||Win||51–10–1||Danny Wofford||TKO||3 (10)||Apr 13, 2001||43 years, 107 days||University, Hampton, Virginia, U.S.|
|61||Win||50–10–1||Elieser Castillo||MD||10||Mar 31, 2001||43 years, 94 days||Bally's Park Place, Atlantic City, New Jersey, U.S.|
|60||Win||49–10–1||David Bostice||TKO||1 (10), 2:21||Feb 22, 2001||43 years, 57 days||Zembo Shrine Building, Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, U.S.|
|59||Win||48–10–1||David Smith||TKO||2 (10), 2:12||Jul 8, 2000||42 years, 194 days||Monroe, Louisiana, U.S.|
|58||Draw||47–10–1||Mike Sedillo||PTS||12||Apr 29, 2000||42 years, 124 days||St. John's, Antigua and Barbuda||For NBA heavyweight title|
|57||Win||47–10||Joe Ballard||KO||1||Feb 25, 2000||42 years, 60 days||Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, U.S.|
|56||Loss||46–10||Greg Page||RTD||7 (10), 3:00||Jun 18, 1999||41 years, 173 days||Cumberland County Crown Coliseum, Fayetteville, North Carolina, U.S.|
|55||Loss||46–9||Brian Nielsen||TKO||4 (10)||Apr 16, 1999||41 years, 110 days||K.B. Hallen, Copenhagen, Denmark|
|54||Loss||46–8||Andrew Golota||UD||10||Oct 2, 1998||40 years, 279 days||Centennial Hall, Wrocław, Poland|
|53||Loss||46–7||Jimmy Thunder||UD||10||Apr 7, 1998||40 years, 101 days||Harrah's Hotel and Casino, Cherokee, North Carolina, U.S.|
|52||Loss||46–6||Larry Donald||UD||12||Dec 13, 1997||39 years, 351 days||Foxwoods Resort Casino, Ledyard, Connecticut, U.S.||For WBC Continental Americas heavyweight title|
|51||Win||46–5||Levi Billups||TKO||1 (10), 1:44||Nov 4, 1997||39 years, 312 days||Grand Casino, Tunica, Mississippi, U.S.|
|50||Loss||45–5||Ray Mercer||UD||10||Dec 14, 1996||38 years, 353 days||Convention Hall, Atlantic City, New Jersey, U.S.|
|49||Win||45–4||Jorge Luis González||TKO||5 (10), 2:54||May 10, 1996||38 years, 135 days||Madison Square Garden, New York City, New York, U.S.|
|48||Win||44–4||Al Cole||UD||10||Jan 12, 1996||38 years, 16 days||Madison Square Garden, New York City, New York, U.S.|
|47||Win||43–4||Tim Puller||TKO||2 (10), 0:45||Nov 14, 1995||37 years, 322 days||Casino Magic, Bay St. Louis, Mississippi, U.S.|
|46||Win||42–4||Everton Davis||TKO||7 (10), 1:34||Oct 31, 1995||37 years, 308 days||Veterans Memorial Coliseum, Phoenix, Arizona, U.S.|
|45||Win||41–4||Jesse Shelby||TKO||1 (10)||Mar 24, 1995||37 years, 87 days||Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, U.S.|
|44||Win||40–4||Nathaniel Fitch||TKO||6 (10)||Dec 17, 1994||36 years, 355 days||Etess Arena, Atlantic City, New Jersey, U.S.|
|43||Win||39–4||Sherman Griffin||TKO||3 (10), 2:58||Aug 12, 1994||36 years, 228 days||South Padre Island, Texas, U.S.|
|42||Win||38–4||Tony Willis||UD||10||Aug 25, 1992||34 years, 242 days||Harrah's Marino Resort, Atlantic City, New Jersey, U.S.|
|41||Loss||37–4||Everett Martin||SD||10||Jul 21, 1992||34 years, 207 days||The Palace, Auburn Hills, Michigan, U.S.|
|40||Win||37–3||James Pritchard||UD||10||Mar 23, 1992||34 years, 87 days||Harrah's Marina Resort, Atlantic City, New Jersey, U.S.|
|39||Win||36–3||Jimmy Lee Smith||KO||1 (10), 2:27||Feb 4, 1992||34 years, 38 days||Trump Plaza Hotel and Casino, Atlantic City, New Jersey, U.S.|
|38||Win||35–3||Art Tucker||TKO||3 (12), 1:33||Sep 10, 1991||33 years, 257 days||The Blue Horizon, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, U.S.||Retained USBA heavyweight title|
|37||Win||34–3||Carl Williams||SD||12||Mar 8, 1991||33 years, 71 days||Etess Arena, Atlantic City, New Jersey, U.S.||Won USBA heavyweight title|
|36||Win||33–3||José Ribalta||MD||10||Jul 19, 1990||32 years, 204 days||Kingdome, Seattle, Washington, U.S.|
|35||Win||32–3||Greg Gorrell||TKO||3 (10), 1:00||Mar 12, 1990||32 years, 75 days||Gelora Senayan Main Stadium, Jakarta, Indonesia|
|34||Win||31–3||Jeff Sims||RTD||5 (10), 3:00||Jan 11, 1990||32 years, 15 days||Trump Plaza Hotel and Casino, Atlantic City, New Jersey, U.S.|
|33||Win||30–3||Anders Eklund||KO||1 (10), 1:11||Oct 19, 1989||31 years, 296 days||Trump Plaza Hotel and Casino, Atlantic City, New Jersey, U.S.|
|32||Win||29–3||Larry Alexander||SD||10||Jan 27, 1989||31 years, 31 days||Bally's Las Vegas, Paradise, Nevada, U.S.|
|31||Win||28–3||Mauricio Villegas||TKO||9 (10)||Feb 17, 1988||30 years, 52 days||York Hall, London, England|
|30||Win||27–3||Mike Williams||SD||10||Oct 14, 1987||29 years, 291 days||Steel Pier, Atlantic City, New Jersey, U.S.|
|29||Win||26–3||Mark Wills||TKO||1 (10), 1:15||Aug 4, 1987||29 years, 220 days||Steel Pier, Atlantic City, New Jersey, U.S.|
|28||Loss||25–3||James Smith||KO||1 (15), 2:12||Dec 12, 1986||28 years, 350 days||Madison Square Garden, New York City, New York, U.S.||Lost WBA heavyweight title|
|27||Win||25–2||Frank Bruno||TKO||11 (15), 2:57||Jul 19, 1986||28 years, 204 days||Wembley Stadium, London, England||Retained WBA heavyweight title|
|26||Win||24–2||Tony Tubbs||MD||15||Jan 17, 1986||28 years, 21 days||Omni Coliseum, Atlanta, Georgia, U.S.||Won WBA heavyweight title|
|25||Win||23–2||Sammy Scaff||TKO||4 (10), 1:04||Oct 12, 1985||27 years, 289 days||National Exhibition Centre, Birmingham, England|
|24||Win||22–2||Larry Beilfuss||TKO||1 (10), 1:35||Sep 6, 1985||27 years, 253 days||Tamiami Park Auditorium, Miami, Florida, U.S.|
|23||Win||21–2||James Smith||UD||12||Jun 15, 1985||27 years, 170 days||Riviera, Winchester, Nevada, U.S.||Retained NABF heavyweight title|
|22||Win||20–2||James Broad||KO||2 (12), 2:35||Apr 29, 1985||27 years, 123 days||Memorial Auditorium, Buffalo, New York, U.S.||Retained NABF heavyweight title|
|21||Win||19–2||Mark Wills||TKO||9 (10), 1:13||Mar 25, 1985||27 years, 88 days||The Forum, Inglewood, California, U.S.|
|20||Loss||18–2||Pinklon Thomas||MD||12||Aug 31, 1984||26 years, 248 days||Riviera, Winchester, Nevada, U.S.||Lost WBC heavyweight title|
|19||Win||18–1||Greg Page||MD||12||Mar 9, 1984||26 years, 73 days||Las Vegas Convention Center, Winchester, Nevada, U.S.||Won vacant WBC heavyweight title|
|18||Win||17–1||James Tillis||TKO||1 (12), 2:16||Sep 23, 1983||25 years, 270 days||Coliseum, Richfield, Ohio, U.S.||Won vacant NABF heavyweight title|
|17||Win||16–1||Floyd Cummings||UD||10||Jul 16, 1983||25 years, 201 days||Dunes, Paradise, Nevada, U.S.|
|16||Loss||15–1||Larry Holmes||SD||12||May 20, 1983||25 years, 144 days||Dunes, Paradise, Nevada, U.S.||For WBC and The Ring heavyweight titles|
|15||Win||15–0||Renaldo Snipes||MD||10||Jun 5, 1982||24 years, 160 days||Caesars Palace, Paradise, Nevada, U.S.|
|14||Win||14–0||Luis Acosta||KO||2 (10), 0:42||Mar 30, 1982||24 years, 93 days||Playboy Hotel and Casino, Atlantic City, New Jersey, U.S.|
|13||Win||13–0||Alfonzo Ratliff||TKO||7 (10), 2:25||Dec 5, 1981||23 years, 343 days||Sands, Atlantic City, New Jersey, U.S.|
|12||Win||12–0||Curtis Gaskins||KO||2 (8)||Nov 17, 1981||23 years, 325 days||Playboy Hotel and Casino, Atlantic City, New Jersey, U.S.|
|11||Win||11–0||Jerry Williams||TKO||8 (10)||Jul 30, 1981||23 years, 215 days||Martin Luther King Arena, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, U.S.|
|10||Win||10–0||Bobby Jordan||KO||4 (10)||Jun 17, 1981||23 years, 172 days||Martin Luther King Arena, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, U.S.|
|9||Win||9–0||Dave Johnson||UD||8||Apr 11, 1981||23 years, 105 days||Concord Resort Hotel, Thompson, New York, U.S.|
|8||Win||8–0||Marvin Stinson||PTS||10||Feb 7, 1981||23 years, 42 days||Steel Pier, Atlantic City, New Jersey, U.S.|
|7||Win||7–0||Ed Bednarik||TKO||1, 2:06||Jan 24, 1981||23 years, 28 days||Martin Luther King Arena, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, U.S.|
|6||Win||6–0||James Reid||TKO||6 (8)||Dec 11, 1980||22 years, 350 days||Martin Luther King Arena, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, U.S.|
|5||Win||5–0||Oliver Wright||TKO||2 (8)||Oct 24, 1980||22 years, 302 days||Martin Luther King Arena, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, U.S.|
|4||Win||4–0||Charles Cox||KO||5||Jul 20, 1980||22 years, 206 days||The Great Gorge Playboy Club Hotel, McAfee, New Jersey, U.S.|
|3||Win||3–0||Robert Evans||UD||6||May 9, 1980||22 years, 134 days||Long Island Arena, Commack, New York, U.S.|
|2||Win||2–0||Robert Ritchie||KO||1||Apr 26, 1980||22 years, 121 days||Lynchburg, Virginia, U.S.|
|1||Win||1–0||Joe Adams||TKO||1, 1:58||Oct 30, 1979||21 years, 307 days||Forum, Upper Darby, Pennsylvania, U.S.|
Larry Holmes is an American former professional boxer who competed from 1973 to 2002 and was world heavyweight champion from 1978 until 1985. He is often considered to be one of the best heavyweight boxers of all time. He grew up in Easton, Pennsylvania, which led to his boxing nickname of the "Easton Assassin".
Osvaldo "Ossie" Ocasio is a Puerto Rican former boxer who held the World Cruiserweight Championship from 1982 to 1984. He was also a Top Contender and Heavyweight Challenger in 1979. He scored notable wins against Former Cruiserweight Champion Dwight Muhammad Qawi as well as beating Top Heavyweight Contender Jimmy Young and Heavyweight Contender Pierre Coetzer, as well as drawing with Future Heavyweight Champion Michael Dokes. Nicknamed "Jaws", his peculiar nickname was the result of him accidentally biting another boxer during a sparring session.
Gerhardus Christian Coetzee was a South African professional boxer who competed from 1974 to 1986, and in 1993 and 1997. He was the first African in history to ever fight for, and win, a world heavyweight championship, having held the WBA title from 1983 to 1984. He held notable knockout wins against WBA world heavyweight champion Michael Dokes and undisputed world heavyweight champion Leon Spinks, as well as a draw with future WBC world heavyweight champion Pinklon Thomas and wins over top contenders Ron Stander, Scott LeDoux and James Tillis.
Boxing in the 1980s was filled with important fights, events and personalities that shaped the sport. Boxing in the 1980s was shaped by many different situations, such as the continuous corporate battles between the different world sanctioning organizations, the void left by Muhammad Ali as the sport's ambassador and consequent search for a new boxing hero, the continuous presence of Don King as the sport's most famous promoter, the surge of rival promoters as Bob Arum, Butch Lewis and Murad Muhammad, and major rule changes. In 1986, Mike Tyson emerged as a fresh new face in the heavyweight division, which had seen a decline in champion quality level after Ali's retirement and, later on, after longtime WBC ruler Larry Holmes' prime. In addition, the IBF and WBO began operating.
Larry Holmes vs. Gerry Cooney was a heavyweight boxing match that took place on June 11, 1982, in Las Vegas, Nevada, United States. It was one of the most highly anticipated fights of the early 1980s.
Pinklon Thomas is an American former professional boxer who competed from 1978 to 1993. He was boxing's first 'Centennial Champion' (1886-1986) and held the WBC heavyweight title from 1984 to 1986. He is often regarded as One of the Best Boxers of His Generation. He Scored Notable Victories Over Former Heavyweight Champions such as Mike Weaver, Tim Witherspoon, James Tillis and Future Cruiserweight Champion Alfonso Ratliff. Thomas' distinguishing characteristics were his pink boxing trunks and a powerful left jab.
Jesse Ferguson is a retired American boxer who was a Heavyweight Title Challenger and Top Contender who Beat Undisputed Heavyweight World Champion Buster Douglas, Heavyweight World Champion Ray Mercer and Cruiserweight World Champion Tyrone Booze. His professional career is filled with matches with champions and contenders and his name is linked with numerous boxing stars of the 1980s and 1990s.
James "Bonecrusher" Smith is an American former professional boxer who competed from 1981 to 1999 and held the WBA heavyweight title from 1986 to 1987.
Greg Page was an American professional boxer who competed from 1979 to 2001, and held the WBA heavyweight title from 1984 to 1985. He was also a regular sparring partner for Mike Tyson, famously knocking down the then-undefeated world champion during a 1990 session.
Tony Tubbs is an American former professional boxer who competed from 1980 to 2006, and held the WBA heavyweight title from 1985 to 1986.
Bruce Samuel Seldon is an American former professional boxer who competed from 1988 to 1996, and 2004 to 2009. He held the WBA heavyweight title from 1995 to 1996, most notably losing to Mike Tyson via knockout in his second defense.
Bertram Cooper, nicknamed Smokin' Bert Cooper, was an American professional boxer who competed between 1984 and 2012. He fought Evander Holyfield, George Foreman, Riddick Bowe, Michael Moorer, Chris Byrd, Ray Mercer, and Corrie Sanders, among others. Cooper challenged three times for a world title, and was known for being in several wild fights, including his world title bouts with Holyfield and Moorer.
Mitch Green is an American former professional boxer who competed from 1980 to 2005. He is best known for having gone the distance with Mike Tyson in 1986, who was undefeated at the time, and had won 20 matches in a row, 19 of them by knockout. Two years later, in 1988, Green ended up fighting Tyson again in a notorious street brawl. A toothpick dangling between his lips became his trademark at any public appearance.
Orlin Levance Norris is an American former professional boxer who competed from 1986 to 2005. He held the WBA cruiserweight title from 1993 to 1995. As an amateur, he won the National Golden Gloves title. He is the brother of retired former champion Terry Norris.
James Broad was an American heavyweight boxer who was a Notable Contender throughout the 1980s, who beat Future World Champion James Smith and gave Heavyweight Champion Greg Page a very tough fight only losing by Majority Decision. He won the NABF heavyweight title and was a regular sparring partner of a peak Mike Tyson. He fought the likes of James Smith, Razor Ruddock, Tony Tucker, Tim Witherspoon, Johnny du Plooy, Francesco Damiani, and Greg Page.
Mike Tyson vs. Tony Tucker, billed as The Ultimate, was a professional boxing match contested on August 1, 1987 for the WBA, WBC, and IBF heavyweight championships.
Mike Tyson vs. Pinklon Thomas, billed as Hard Road to Glory, was a professional boxing match contested on May 30, 1987, for the WBA and WBC heavyweight championships.
The heavyweight unification series, also known as the Heavyweight World Series, was a sequence of professional boxing matches held in 1986 and 1987 to crown an undisputed champion of the heavyweight class. The series was produced by HBO Sports and promoted by Don King. It ended with Mike Tyson as undisputed champion, holding the championship belts of the International Boxing Federation (IBF), World Boxing Association (WBA), and World Boxing Council (WBC).
José Manuel Ribalta is a Cuban former professional boxer who competed in the heavyweight division from 1982 to 1999. He is best known for his fight against Mike Tyson in 1986.
The second fight between Tim Witherspoon and James “Bonecrusher” Smith took place on December 12, 1986, at Madison Square Garden in New York, New York, USA. The fight was contested for Witherspoon’s World Boxing Association heavyweight championship, and was Witherspoon’s second defense of the championship he had won from Tony Tubbs in January 1986.