Trevor Berbick

Last updated

Trevor Berbick
Trevorberbick.jpg
Statistics
Weight(s) Heavyweight
Height6 ft 2 in (188 cm)
Reach78 in (198 cm)
NationalityJamaican
Born(1954-08-01)1 August 1954
Norwich, Port Antonio, Jamaica
Died28 October 2006(2006-10-28) (aged 52)
Norwich, Port Antonio, Jamaica
Stance Orthodox
Boxing record
Total fights61
Wins49
Wins by KO29
Losses11
Draws1

Trevor Berbick (1 August 1954 – 28 October 2006) was a Jamaican professional boxer who competed from 1976 to 2000. He won the WBC heavyweight title in 1986 by defeating Pinklon Thomas, then lost it in his first defense in the same year to Mike Tyson. Berbick was also the last boxer to fight Muhammad Ali, defeating him in 1981.

Contents

As an amateur, Berbick won a bronze medal in the heavyweight division at the 1975 Pan American Games. In both his early and late professional career he held the Canadian heavyweight title twice, from 1979 to 1986 and 1999 to 2001.

Amateur career

At 21, Berbick represented his native Jamaica in the 1976 Summer Olympics in Montreal, Quebec, Canada as a heavyweight boxer, despite having had only 11 prior amateur bouts. His lack of experience was evident as he lost to the eventual silver medalist, Mircea Şimon of Romania. However, he still displayed a lot of promise as a young heavyweight boxer. The previous year, in his only bout at the Pan American Games in Mexico City, Berbick lost a decision to future heavyweight champion Michael Dokes in the semi-finals, winning a bronze medal. [1]

Leroy Caldwell, a boxer who fought almost all notable top-ranked heavyweights of the 1970s and early 1980s, including several world champions, recalled that Berbick was his most talented opponent. [2]

Professional career

Berbick left Jamaica after the Olympics. He opted to settle in Montreal and fight professionally out of Halifax. He won his first 11 fights (10 by knockout) before suffering his first pro loss to another rising contender, Bernardo Mercado, on 3 April 1979. As an amateur, Berbick had soundly beaten Mercado. However, with 10 seconds remaining in the first round of their only professional meeting, Berbick walked into a punch and was knocked out. Nevertheless, he remained in contention for the heavyweight title.

A 1980 upset of ex-champ John Tate (9th-round KO) secured a title shot against Larry Holmes on 11 April 1981, but Berbick lost a 15-round unanimous decision. In his second fight after the loss, he beat 39-year-old Muhammad Ali in the final fight of Ali's career.

In 1982 he beat undefeated prospect Greg Page, and in 1984 he moved to Miramar, Florida and signed with promoter Don King. Wins over undefeated Mitch "Blood" Green and David Bey scored him another title fight, and he won the WBC world heavyweight title by upsetting Pinklon Thomas with an easy unanimous decision on 22 March 1986. However, his reign as champion would be brief.

On 22 November, in his first defense of the title, Berbick took on Mike Tyson, who was looking to break Floyd Patterson's record and become, at the age of twenty, the youngest ever heavyweight champion. In the second round, Tyson dropped Berbick with a quick knockdown. Berbick was quickly overwhelmed by his opponent and late in the round, he went down again. The champion rose to his feet, but immediately stumbled backward and fell back to the canvas. Berbick tried twice more to make it to his feet but fell both times, and referee Mills Lane stopped counting and waved the fight off to end Berbick's reign as champion.

Berbick is the only man in professional boxing history to have fought Muhammad Ali, Larry Holmes, and Mike Tyson.

In 1991, he traveled to the UWFi promotion in Japan to fight Nobuhiko Takada in a "boxer vs. wrestler" bout. Berbick claimed that he had been double-crossed and that he had expected the fight to be like American kickboxing, but it turned out that the rules allowed Takada to kick Berbick below the belt. Berbick refused to mount any offense, instead repeatedly complaining to the referee as Takada kicked him repeatedly in the legs. Takada claimed victory by default when Berbick exited the ring. [3]

Berbick resumed his boxing career in 1994, frequently fighting on the USA Tuesday Night Fights. He would score a mild upset over Melvin Foster but would go on to lose to prospects such as Jimmy Thunder and Hasim Rahman. He eventually fought his last bout in 2000 against Canadian journeyman Shane Sutcliffe, winning a 12-round unanimous decision. Afterwards, a CAT scan revealed a blood clot in his brain and his boxing license was revoked. His final professional record was 49 wins (33 by knockout), 11 losses, and 1 draw.

Outside the ring

Berbick was a preacher at the Moments of Miracles Pentecostal church in Las Vegas.

Rape conviction

Berbick was arrested on a number of occasions throughout his life and was sentenced in Florida to 5 years in prison for raping his children's babysitter in 1992. He served only 15 months. In 1997, he violated his parole and was deported from the United States to Canada. Due to his legal issues, he also had problems staying in Canada, losing his landed immigrant status and being ordered back to Jamaica in 1999. [4] Later in 1999 he won the right to remain in Canada. [5]

Feud with Larry Holmes

Berbick had a well-publicized feud with Larry Holmes, whom he fought in the ring in 1981. Their feud culminated in a public confrontation and brawl in 1991, which was caught on tape. After a verbal altercation indoors, Berbick was outside complaining about being kicked and punched by Larry Holmes when Holmes climbed atop a parked car and launched himself at Berbick. Holmes was furious with Berbick badmouthing his family. The footage ends as the two are separated by police and others. [6]

Retirement

Berbick retired in Florida to be with his wife and four children (he had three children with his first wife in Montreal) and started to train boxers at Kenny Barrett's Gym in Tamarac, Florida. Berbick's problems escalated. He was again deported from the U.S. on 2 December 2002.

Death

On 28 October 2006, Berbick was murdered at a church in Norwich, Jamaica by an assailant wielding a 2-inch-diameter (51 mm) steel pipe. He sustained repeated blows to the head and died at the scene. [7]

Police arrested two men, one of whom was Berbick's 20-year-old nephew Harold Berbick, [8] in connection with the murder. They were interrogated at the Port Antonio police station in Portland early on the morning of 29 October. [9] Local residents indicated that the suspect was involved in a land dispute with Berbick. [10] On 3 November it was reported that Berbick's nephew, 20-year-old Harold Berbick, and an unidentified 18-year-old man had been charged with his murder by Jamaican police. [11] On 20 December 2007, Harold Berbick was convicted for the murder of his uncle. His alleged accomplice, Kenton Gordon, was convicted of manslaughter and both men were sentenced on 11 January 2008. [12] Harold Berbick was sentenced to life in prison; Kenton Gordon was sentenced to fourteen years in prison. [13] Trevor Berbick's body was buried at the Berbick Family Plot Norwich, in Portland, Jamaica.

Professional boxing record

Professional record summary
61 fights49 wins11 losses
By knockout332
By decision169
Draws1
No.ResultRecordOpponentTypeRound, timeDateLocationNotes
61Win49–11–1 Flag of Canada (Pantone).svg Shane Sutcliffe UD1226 May 2000 Flag of Canada (Pantone).svg PNE Agrodome, Vancouver, British Columbia, CanadaRetained Canada heavyweight title
60Loss48–11–1 Flag of the United States.svg Tony LaRosaSD812 Aug 1999 Flag of Canada (Pantone).svg Slave Lake, Alberta, Canada
59Win48–10–1 Flag of the United States.svg Iran Barkley UD829 Jun 1999 Flag of Canada (Pantone).svg Molson Centre, Montreal, Quebec, Canada
58Win47–10–1 Flag of Canada (Pantone).svg Shane Sutcliffe TKO12 (12), 0:445 Feb 1999 Flag of Canada (Pantone).svg Centre Pierre Charbonneau, Montreal, Quebec, CanadaWon Canada heavyweight title
57Win46–10–1 Flag of Canada (Pantone).svg Ben PerliniUD106 Aug 1998 Flag of Canada (Pantone).svg Slave Lake, Alberta, Canada
56Loss45–10–1 Flag of the United States.svg Lyle McDowellSD1215 Sep 1997 Flag of Canada (Pantone).svg Shaw Conference Centre, Edmonton, Alberta, CanadaFor vacant IBO Inter-Continental heavyweight title
55Loss45–9–1 Flag of the United States.svg Hasim Rahman UD1015 Oct 1996 Flag of the United States.svg Circus Maximus Showroom, Atlantic City, New Jersey, U.S.
54Win45–8–1 Flag of the United States.svg Louis MonacoUD1018 Sep 1996 Flag of the United States.svg Westbury Music Fair, North Hempstead, New York, U.S.
53Win44–8–1 Flag of the United States.svg Ken SmithTKO4 (10), 1:0526 Apr 1996 Flag of the United States.svg Westbury Music Fair, North Hempstead, New York, U.S.
52Win43–8–1 Flag of the United States.svg Bruce JohnsonTKO3 (10)25 Aug 1995 Flag of the United States.svg Columbus, Ohio, U.S.
51Loss42–8–1 Flag of New Zealand.svg Jimmy Thunder UD1215 Mar 1995 Flag of the United States.svg Mystic Lake Casino Hotel, Prior Lake, Minnesota, U.S.For vacant WBC Continental Americas heavyweight title
50Win42–7–1 Flag of the United States.svg Melvin Foster SD1013 Sep 1994 Flag of the United States.svg Westbury Music Fair, North Hempstead, New York, U.S.
49Win41–7–1 Flag of the United States.svg Marselles BrownKO2 (10)10 Aug 1994 Flag of the United States.svg Lakefront Arena, New Orleans, Louisiana, U.S.
48Win40–7–1 Flag of the United States.svg Paul PhillipsKO4 (10), 1:1430 Jul 1994 Flag of the United States.svg Myrl H. Shoemaker Center, Cincinnati, Ohio, U.S.
47Win39–7–1 Flag of the United States.svg Danny WoffordPTS814 Mar 1994 Flag of the United States.svg Spartanburg, South Carolina, U.S.
46Win38–7–1 Flag of the United States.svg Garing LanePTS82 Aug 1991 Flag of France.svg Palais des Festivals et des Congrès, Cannes, France
45Win37–7–1 Flag of the United States.svg Bobby CrabtreeKO5 (10), 2:0014 Dec 1990 Flag of the United States.svg The Diplomat, Hollywood, Florida, U.S.
44Win36–7–1 Flag of the United States.svg Jeff SimsTKO6 (10), 2:1518 Jul 1990 Flag of Canada (Pantone).svg Varsity Arena, Toronto, Ontario, Canada
43Loss35–7–1 Flag of the United States.svg Buster Douglas UD10 25 Feb 1989 Flag of the United States.svg Las Vegas Hilton, Winchester, Nevada, U.S.
42Win35–6–1 Flag of the United States.svg O T DavisKO3 (10)20 Sep 1988 Flag of the United States.svg Central Plaza Hotel, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, U.S.
41Loss34–6–1 Flag of the United States.svg Carl Williams UD12 27 Jun 1988 Flag of the United States.svg Convention Hall, Atlantic City, New Jersey, U.S.For USBA heavyweight title
40Win34–5–1 Flag of the United States.svg Robert EvansUD1024 Nov 1987 Flag of Canada (Pantone).svg Forum, Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada
39Win33–5–1 Flag of the United States.svg Lorenzo BoydTKO3 (10), 1:4829 Oct 1987 Flag of the United States.svg Musical Theater, Sunrise, Florida, U.S.
38Win32–5–1 Flag of the United States.svg Art TerryTKO5 (10), 1:3331 Jul 1987 Flag of the United States.svg Lee County Civic Center, North Fort Myers, Florida, U.S.
37Loss31–5–1 Flag of the United States.svg Mike Tyson TKO2 (12), 2:35 22 Nov 1986 Flag of the United States.svg Las Vegas Hilton, Winchester, Nevada, U.S.Lost WBC heavyweight title
36Win31–4–1 Flag of the United States.svg Pinklon Thomas UD1222 Mar 1986 Flag of the United States.svg Riviera, Winchester, Nevada, U.S.Won WBC heavyweight title
35Win30–4–1 Flag of the United States.svg Mike PerkinsTKO10 (10)17 Jan 1986 Flag of the United States.svg Omni Coliseum, Atlanta, Georgia, U.S.
34Win29–4–1 Flag of the United States.svg Mitch Green MD1210 Aug 1985 Flag of the United States.svg Riviera, Winchester, Nevada, U.S.Retained USBA heavyweight title
33Win28–4–1 Flag of the United States.svg David Bey TKO11 (12), 2:3015 Jun 1985 Flag of the United States.svg Riviera, Winchester, Nevada, U.S.Won USBA heavyweight title
32Win27–4–1 Flag of the United States.svg Walter SantemoreUD1028 Nov 1984 Flag of the United States.svg Broadway by the Bay Theater, Atlantic City, New Jersey, U.S.
31Win26–4–1 Flag of the Bahamas.svg Andros Ernie BarrTKO4 (12)1 Sep 1984 Flag of the Bahamas.svg Nassau, BahamasRetained Commonwealth heavyweight title
30Win25–4–1 Flag of the United States.svg Mark LeePTS1013 Mar 1984 Flag of the United Kingdom.svg Wembley Arena, London, England
29Win24–4–1 Flag of the United States.svg Mike CohenKO4 (10)19 Feb 1984 Flag of the United States.svg Hyatt Regency, Tampa, Florida, U.S.
28Win23–4–1 Flag of Canada (Pantone).svg Ken LakustaKO10 (12), 1:529 Sep 1983 Flag of Canada (Pantone).svg Northlands Coliseum, Edmonton, Alberta, CanadaRetained Commonwealth and Canada heavyweight titles
27Loss22–4–1 Flag of the United States.svg S. T. Gordon UD1028 May 1983 Flag of the United States.svg Showboat Hotel and Casino, Las Vegas, Nevada, U.S.
26Loss22–3–1 Flag of the United States.svg Renaldo Snipes UD102 Oct 1982 Flag of the United States.svg Sands, Atlantic City, New Jersey, U.S.
25Win22–2–1 Flag of the United States.svg Greg Page UD10 11 Jun 1982 Flag of the United States.svg Caesars Palace, Paradise, Nevada, U.S.
24Win21–2–1 Flag of Canada (Pantone).svg Gordon RacetteTKO11 (12)5 Mar 1982 Flag of Canada (Pantone).svg Frank Crane Arena, Nanaimo, British Columbia, CanadaRetained Commonwealth and Canada heavyweight titles
23Win20–2–1 Flag of the United States.svg Muhammad Ali UD10 11 Dec 1981 Flag of the Bahamas.svg Queen Elizabeth Sports Centre, Nassau, Bahamas
22Win19–2–1 Flag of Canada (Pantone).svg Conroy NelsonKO2 (15), 2:4921 Jul 1981 Flag of Canada (Pantone).svg Metro Centre, Halifax, Nova Scotia, CanadaRetained Canada heavyweight title;
Won vacant Commonwealth heavyweight title
21Loss18–2–1 Flag of the United States.svg Larry Holmes UD1511 Apr 1981 Flag of the United States.svg Caesars Palace, Paradise, Nevada, U.S.For WBC, The Ring , and lineal heavyweight titles
20Win18–1–1 Flag of the United States.svg Chuck GardnerTKO4 (10), 1:1231 Jan 1981 Flag of Jamaica.svg Kingston, Jamaica
19Win17–1–1 Flag of Canada (Pantone).svg Chuck FindlayKO1 (10), 2:4711 Nov 1980 Flag of Canada (Pantone).svg Metro Centre, Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada
18Win16–1–1 Flag of Canada (Pantone).svg Ron RouselleKO1 (12), 0:3327 Aug 1980 Flag of Canada (Pantone).svg Northlands Coliseum, Edmonton, Alberta, CanadaRetained Canada heavyweight title
17Win15–1–1 Flag of the United States.svg John Tate KO9 (10), 0:2220 Jun 1980 Flag of Canada (Pantone).svg Olympic Stadium, Montreal, Quebec, Canada
16Win14–1–1 Flag of the United States.svg Johnny WarrSD1011 Mar 1980 Flag of Canada (Pantone).svg Metro Centre, Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada
15Win13–1–1 Flag of Nigeria.svg Ngozika Ekwelum TKO5 (10), 0:0111 Dec 1979 Flag of Canada (Pantone).svg Metro Centre, Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada
14Draw12–1–1 Flag of the United States.svg Leroy CaldwellPTS1014 Jun 1979 Flag of Canada (Pantone).svg Convention Centre, Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada
13Win12–1 Flag of Canada (Pantone).svg Earl McLeayTKO7 (12), 2:0726 May 1979 Flag of Canada (Pantone).svg Glace Bay, Nova Scotia, CanadaWon vacant Canada heavyweight title
12Loss11–1 Flag of Colombia.svg Bernardo Mercado KO1 (12), 2:553 Apr 1979 Flag of Canada (Pantone).svg Metro Centre, Halifax, Nova Scotia, CanadaFor vacant WBC Continental Americas heavyweight title
11Win11–0 Flag of the United States.svg Greg SorrentinoTKO1 (10), 1:278 Oct 1978 Flag of Canada (Pantone).svg Metro Centre, Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada
10Win10–0 Flag of the United States.svg Gregory JohnsonKO4 (10), 2:4912 Sep 1978 Flag of Canada (Pantone).svg Metro Centre, Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada
9Win9–0 Flag of the United Kingdom.svg Tony MooreTKO6 (10), 0:011 Aug 1978 Flag of Canada (Pantone).svg Metro Centre, Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada
8Win8–0 Flag of Canada (Pantone).svg Horst GeislerKO1 (10), 1:2128 Jun 1978 Flag of Canada (Pantone).svg Metro Centre, Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada
7Win7–0 Flag of the United States.svg Eugene GreenUD108 Dec 1977 Flag of Canada (Pantone).svg Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada
6Win6–0 Flag of the United States.svg Eddie OwensTKO5 (10), 2:348 Sep 1977 Flag of Canada (Pantone).svg Forum, Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada
5Win5–0 Flag of the United States.svg Willie MooreKO4 (10), 2:0418 Aug 1977 Flag of Canada (Pantone).svg Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada
4Win4–0 Flag of the United States.svg Joe MayeTKO7 (10), 2:5025 Jan 1977 Flag of Canada (Pantone).svg Metro Centre, Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada
3Win3–0 Flag of the United States.svg Michael LucasTKO2 (6), 2:219 Jan 1977 Flag of Canada (Pantone).svg New Glasgow, Nova Scotia, Canada
2Win2–0 Flag of the United States.svg Bobby Halpern TKO3 (6), 2:0523 Nov 1976 Flag of Canada (Pantone).svg Forum, Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada
1Win1–0 Flag of Canada (Pantone).svg Wayne MartinTKO5 (6)27 Sep 1976 Flag of Canada (Pantone).svg Festival Arena, Shediac, New Brunswick, Canada

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References

  1. "7.Panamerican Games - Ciudad Mexico, Mexico - October 12-26 1975". amateur-boxing.strefa.pl. Retrieved 29 March 2019.
  2. Did Earnie Shavers or George Foreman hit harder? Leroy Caldwell, who fought both, gives his take, an interview by Jeff Mayweather, Las Vegas, Nevada (7 July 2016).
  3. Quebrada.net
  4. "Trevor Berbick Ordered from Canada". AP News Archive. Associated Press. 18 February 1999. Retrieved 4 June 2016.
  5. CBC News (5 December 1999). "Boxer Berbick wins deportation fight". Canadian Broadcasting Corporation . Retrieved 5 June 2016.
  6. Canada. "Sports - The Globe and Mail". Globesports.com. Retrieved 13 August 2012.
  7. "Former heavyweight boxing champion found dead". London: The Guardian. 28 October 2006. Retrieved 28 October 2006.
  8. Sun Sentinel [ permanent dead link ]
  9. "Former heavyweight boxing champion found dead". Casper Star-Tribune. 29 October 2006. Retrieved 29 October 2006.[ permanent dead link ]
  10. "Jamaican police make arrest in slaying of ex-boxing champ Trevor Berbick". Canadian Broadcasting Corporation. 30 October 2006. Retrieved 30 October 2006.[ dead link ]
  11. "Nephew Charged With Berbick's Slaying". New York Times . 3 November 2006. Retrieved 3 November 2006.[ dead link ]
  12. "Berbick's nephew one of two convicted in boxer's murder - boxing - ESPN". Sports.espn.go.com. 21 December 2007. Retrieved 13 August 2012.
  13. "Berbick Killer Gets Life". Archived from the original on 3 October 2009.
Sporting positions
Regional boxing titles
Vacant
Title last held by
George Chuvalo
Canada heavyweight champion
26 May 1979 – 1986
Vacated
Vacant
Title next held by
Ken Lakusta
Vacant
Title last held by
John L. Gardner
Commonwealth
heavyweight champion

21 July 1981 – 1986
Vacated
Vacant
Title next held by
Horace Notice
Preceded by
David Bey
USBA heavyweight champion
15 June 1981 – March 1986
Vacated
Vacant
Title next held by
Tony Tucker
Preceded by
Shane Sutcliffe
Canada heavyweight champion
5 February 1999 – October 2001
Retired
Vacant
Title next held by
Donovan Ruddock
World boxing titles
Preceded by
Pinklon Thomas
WBC heavyweight champion
22 March 1986 – 22 November 1986
Succeeded by
Mike Tyson