WBN looks back at when heavyweight Tim Tomashek sat ringside supping beers before getting the call to fight world champion Tommy Morrison, the same night.
Tomashek will remain in history books forever for the unheard-of way he challenged Morrison for the coveted belt.
Much gets written about the meaning of the top division title in recent years. And the ongoing concern regarding what more versions have done to dilute its magnitude.
But what happened on August 30th of 1993 would have threatened the status of the greatest prize in the sport if it happened today.
Tommy Morrison opponent
As Morrison prepared for the first belt defense after he took it from George Foreman in his hometown of Kansas City, opponent Carl Williams refused to make his way to the ring.
This unimaginable scenario left Morrison in a tough spot with just over an hour to go until the first bell. Luckily for “The Duke,” he had a backup plan.
Luckily, Tim Tomashek was present just in case something happened to threaten the main event.
Now, tales from some journalists at that time would have you believe Tomashek was just some random guy pulled out of the crowd to fight. But we know the then 28-year-old was aware this possibility could happen.
“Doughboy” – as he was affectionately known, still didn’t believe Williams would be unable to compete. Due to this, Tomashek participated in the “drinking of a few brewski’s” as he settled in to watch the fight.
In researching the contest, World Boxing News could find no evidence to back up claims that Tomashek had ties to work the corner of Williams. He was simply the arranged substitute, as far as what we could gather.
Tim Tomashek called up
Nonetheless, Morrison called him upon very late in the day, but Tomashek looked happy to be in the arena.
As the first bell rang, a shout wailed from the crowd. “Tommy, don’t hurt him” as Morrison landed a first jab of the bout.
Tomashek then reeled off a combination to the delight of those cheering for the underdog. It was a crazy situation to find yourself in, especially with a belly full of beer.
In the end, the fight went the way it was supposed to. As he walked to the wrong corner after a knockdown, Tomashek was seated and surrounded by a concerned entourage.
Threats to pull him out of his big moment followed. The challenger protested to carry on by saying, “oh, come on!”
He wanted his moment in the spotlight to last a bit longer. However, Morrison got the job done at the end of the fourth.
Detrimental to his health, his corner made the correct call. Tomashek wasn’t allowed out for the fifth.
All the fun and games at the time got seen as an event-saving decision to bring Tomashek in. But we know something like this would never happen in this day and age.
Rumors the WBO pulled their sanctioning afterward cannot be backed up by records. They still show the bill-topper as a bonafide title fight.
Can you image heavyweight rulers Tyson Fury, Oleksandr Usyk, or ex-champ Deontay Wilder being allowed to do similar today? – It simply wouldn’t happen.
Tomashek got his twelve minutes of fame, though. Boxing fans will fondly remember him for his guts in taking a beating from Tommy.