WBN Spotlight: Underdog victories

WBN 11/07/2016
George Foreman


Boxing may not be the most popular of fighting sport in the world at the moment, but diehard fans know that following it is still as rewarding forever.

One reason for this is the unpredictable upsets that occur seemingly every year across all weight classes. and yearly in whatever your weight class of choice is to follow. Below are some of our favorite big boxing wins by the underdog that anyone who watched live will always remember, no matter if you placed a big bet on the underdog or were just watching as a neutral boxing fan.

1983: Roberto Duran over Davey Moore

A prolific fighter if there ever was one, Roberto Duran fought 119 fights in his professional career, but one of his most memorable was against Davey Moore, who had already successfully defended his WBA Light Middleweight title three times. Despite being in front of a home New York crowd, it was Moore that was booed and the Panamanian Duran that was cheered when the fighters entered the ring.


That set the tone for the rest the fight as “Stone Hands” Duran gave Moore such a bad beating that the fight was stopped with the latter still somehow standing in the 8th. Nearly ever boxing pundit had picked the much-younger Moore to win the fight over Duran, who had turned 32 that day and was serenaded with “Happy Birthday” by the New York crowd as he lifted a title belt once again.

2004: Antonio Tarver over Roy Jones Jr.

After defeating John Ruiz in 2003 for the WBA Heavyweight Championship, Roy Jones Jr.’s light heavyweight titles were vacated and then won by Antonio Tarver. Wanting to reclaim his,, Jones and Tarver met for the first time in 2003, with Tarver winning an extremely close bout by decision.


However Jones had dropped 24 pounds in a short amount of time to get ready for that fight, leaving him at less than optimal strength. A re-match was in order, and the boxer named Fighter of the Decade for the 1990s was predicted by many to reclaim his titles easily. However Jones seemed as surprised as the viewing and betting public when he caught a big left hand shot from Tarver in the second round, marking the first time Junior had ever been KO’d.

Its fights like these that makes boxing great! Fans love the unpredictability factor that boxing offers, you can never know if the underdog will get knocked out or produce a knock out to his opponent. That is also why boxing and betting go hand in hand, fans that have placed bets on the underdog have won some big money. If you think you can win big and want to know how to get started this sports betting page is a great place to start. – Get involved and see if you can win big!

1994: George Foreman over Michael Moorer

Even though he was considered one of the “meanest” fighters of his time, few thought George Foreman would be able to tap into his former boxing self when he tried to return to the sport after a 10-year break. But the star fighter and entrepreneur went on a 24-match unbeaten streak, earning himself an opportunity to face Michael Moorer for the WBA, IBF, and Lineal Titles.

Moorer was the first southpaw to be heavyweight champion, a title he won by defeating Evander Holyfield just 7 months earlier in 12 rounds. Almost 20 years younger, the house’s money was on  Moorer despite the crowd backing the underdog Foreman. Most thought that if the match was a long one it was Moorer’s fight to lose, but the opposite happened: a mean combo in the 10th knocked Moorer to the canvas, making Foreman the oldest heavyweight champion ever.

1964: Cassius Clay over Sonny Liston

Both Clay/Ali-Liston fights were some of the most anticipated the sport had or has ever seen. The first fight was particularly memorable, as it was the bout that saw the transformation of a cocky 22-year old into perhaps the most popular boxer of all-time. For Liston, it was the beginning of the end for a man that was once feared more than any other in the ring.


Muhammad Ali had won gold at the 1960 Olympic games as a light heavyweight, but his chances were widely dismissed by the media, who weren’t fond of his boisterous style. But the 7:1 underdog shocked the world when he beat Liston into such a pulp that he wasn’t able to answer the bell for the 7th round, making Liston the new heavyweight champion of the world.

1990: Buster Douglas over Mike Tyson

The (undisputed?) greatest boxing upset of all-time wasn’t even supposed to be a “real” match. At the beginning of 1990, Mike Tyson had had only one fight in his entire 37-match career go longer than six rounds. His knockout power was unlike anything the boxing world had ever seen, and he had never even been knocked down before. Pitted against a 29-4-1 fighter named Buster Douglas, the early 1990 fight was thought to be a tune-up match for a prize fight with Evander Holyfield later in the year. Key word: was.


Even though Tyson knocked down Buster in the 8th and seemingly threw everything he had at him in the 9th, the 42:1 underdog would not fall. A combination on an increasingly winded-looking Tyson sent the champ down for the first time and the news shocked the world when The Baddest Man on the Planet.