The sport of boxing has claimed a lot of victims over the years. Some have died brutally in the ring, some have lost the majority of their brain cells, and others have become the victims of substance abuse after retiring from the only thing they knew how to do.
Unfortunately, a few turned to crime. In the case of the great Alexis Arguello, some ended up taking their own lives.
The list is long when looking at some of boxing’s most tragic tales and a few of the more prominent names include Rubin ‘Hurricane’ Carter, Sonny Liston, Muhammad Ali, Mike Tyson, Wilfredo Benitez, Duk-koo Kim, Davey Moore, Johnny Owen, and Michael Watson. And if they aren’t careful, Ricky Hatton and Floyd Mayweather Jr. may also find their names on that sad, list.
Hatton, who has arguably been Britain’s greatest boxer over the past decade, recently had is boxing and manager’s licenses stripped and was fined about $31,000 by the British Boxing Board of Control after the former world champion admitted to recreational drug use.
The official reason for the punishment was for bringing the sport into disrepute. Hatton didn’t have much of a choice really as British newspaper the News of the World posted an internet video that showed the boxer snorting cocaine and also published a front-page article and photos about it.
The 31-year old Hatton always liked a drink or two between fights and one of his favorite hangouts was the local pub. However, he soon found it harder to get into shape for fights and he paid the price in the ring by getting knocked out by Floyd Mayweather Jr. in 2007 and Manny Pacquiao in 2009.
With an excellent record of 45-2 (32KOs), those have been the Englishman’s only pro losses. Since the News of the World broke the story, Hatton has entered rehab to try and get his life back on track.
Hatton released a video and said: "I am currently in the Priory (clinic) dealing with depression due to the fact I have not been able to cope with my retirement from boxing. I have been binge drinking heavily and dabbling in other daft and silly things. But it will be the toughest fight of my life and I am here to win it."
The board said it’s concerned with keeping boxing free from all types of drug use as well as identifying and dealing with the problems of alcohol abuse. However, Hatton was allowed to keep his promoter’s license -- he operates his own company called Hatton Promotions.
As for Mayweather, it looks like you can take the boxer out of the 'hood, but you can’t take the 'hood out of the boxer. This guy has more than enough money for several lifetimes, but repeatedly continues to act like a jackass.
The 33-year-old Mayweather’s next fight will be in a courtroom on Nov. 9 instead of the ring, as he’s facing four felony charges including domestic violence stemming from an incident on Sept. 9. If convicted, he’s facing up to 34 years in the slammer.
Mayweather allegedly assaulted the mother of two of his children after stealing her iPhone and threatening to kill her after. He’s also looking at three harassment charges as well as misdemeanor domestic battery. The same woman accused Mayweather of beating her in 2003 and he was facing felony battery charges, but she retracted her testimony and the charges were dropped.
Out of the two, I give Hatton a better chance of recovering than Mayweather. You can always kick drugs and booze, but changing your personality is a lot tougher.
Thanks to our friends at Paddy Power Sportsbook for this article.