|Lennox Lewis Enjoying Retirement; Speaks on Heavyweight Division
Interview by Dan Horgan (Nov 20, 2006) Photo © LennoxLewis.com
Lennox Lewis is enjoying retirement. After a fourteen year, forty-four fight career, the two time heavyweight champion called it quits in 2004, and has yet to even hint of a comeback. Now the expert commentator for HBO’s ‘Boxing After Dark’, Lewis has happily adapted to life after boxing, and is truly content being ringside rather than in the ring.
Since Lewis’s departure from the sport, the heavyweight division has completely collapsed. In three years, there have been zero unification bouts and only one Ring Magazine Champion (a highly questionable one at that). Many people have been calling for ‘The Lion’ to come back and possibly mend the mess he left behind, but Lewis is far too at ease with his new life, and realizes he has already reached the pinnacle of his athletic career.
“There’s no need for me to come back,” said Lewis. “I’ve become the undisputed heavyweight champion of the world, and you can’t get any higher than that.”
Other than glory, a significant factor for many fighters to come out of retirement is the inability to resist one last payday something Lewis could easily obtain. However, he has a paying job which he enjoys immensely, and he simply doesn’t need the money.
“I could come back and make a lot of money, but I’m getting paid announcing, and I love it. I know what I’m
commentating on. I’m good for the job because people know I’ve been in the ring. That life is a lot better for me right now.”
For Lewis, becoming a commentator also meant becoming one of boxing’s analytical vanguards. Obviously, he has kept a close eye on the heavyweight division where much has happened in the past few weeks. So what are Lewis’s thoughts on the recent performances of Wladimir Klitschko and Shannon Briggs?
“I thought Klitschko had an easy time Saturday night. I don’t think he has much competition right now, and if you don’t have that you can’t be considered great. Also, Klitschko hasn’t really been hit yet. The guys he’s been facing have all yet to really catch him on the chin, and until someone does that, it will hard to tell how good he really is. As for Briggs, he worked very hard to become champion. Against Lyakhovich, he fought a smart fight, but if he can remain a champion remains a question.”
With the lack of unification bouts in heavyweight boxing, many fans are beginning to wonder if we will ever see another undisputed champion. Lewis believes unification could happen, but recognizes the obstacles in the way.
“It’s a possibility, but promoters don’t want it. If there’s a unified champ, they won’t make money. They’re happy collecting purses from their champions fighting number one contenders.”
So what is Lewis doing when he’s not announcing?
“I have a six month old girl and a two year old boy. That’s the future right there. My son may have boxing in his blood we’ll have to see when he gets older, but I want him to be a lawyer. I also have a chance to be in two movies.”
And Lewis would want to fight again why?
Writer’s note: As I had mentioned in my previous article, Myspace.com could be boxing’s savior because of its easy contacting system. This interview was the perfect example. Lewis, who has a Myspace account, posted a bulletin telling fans to give him their number so he could call them. I happened to read the bulletin and was able to secure the interview. Also, special thanks goes out to Lewis who may have been the most friendly boxer I’ve interviewed to date.
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