Boxing: Oliver McCall Needs Help Or He'll Be Dead Within Five Years

Colin LinneweberSenior Writer IFebruary 17, 2010

17 Nov 2001:   Oliver McCall during his fight against Henry Akinwande at the Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino in Las Vegas, Nevada.   McCall won with a tenth round knockout. DIGITAL IMAGE   Mandatory Credit:  John Gichigi/ALLSPORT
John Gichigi/Getty Images

Former WBC heavyweight champion Oliver “The Atomic Bull” McCall was arrested on Saturday night for possession of cocaine and a crack pipe in Fort Lauderdale.

McCall (54-9, 37 KOs), who upset Lennox Lewis (41-2-1, 32 KOs) by second round TKO for his title in September 1994, was scheduled to fight Zuri Lawrence (24-15-4-1, 8 KOs) this week at the Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino in nearby Hollywood, Florida.

Raised on the South Side of Chicago, McCall has amassed an extensive criminal record outside of the ring, and last weekend’s infraction is a direct violation of his probation.

Inside the ring and at his peak, McCall was a slightly above-average pugilist who possessed formidable power in both fists.

Unfortunately, the two-time Golden Gloves champion from the Windy City is a longstanding dope fiend whose emotional state has made him a pathetic laughingstock.

More than two years after McCall shockingly knocked Lewis onto Queer Street, the combatants fought in a February 1997 rematch in Las Vegas.

The first three rounds between McCall and Lewis were nine minutes of uneventful and lackluster “action.”

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When the fourth round began, McCall flatly refused to defend himself against Lewis.

If McCall’s lack of guard and retaliation wasn’t bizarre enough, he subsequently started to uncontrollably bawl like a woman watching Beaches as the round came to a close.

Ultimately, McCall’s loopy behavior forced referee Mills Lane to stop the match and award Lewis with a fifth round TKO victory.

“In the third round, he (McCall) got in close, and then seemed frustrated, and then he just backed off and put his arms down,” said Lane. “I thought he was playing possum but then I saw his lips started to quiver and I thought, ‘My God, is he losing it?’ I wanted to fix the fight for him, but he started crying, so I had to stop the fight.”

At an old 44-years-old, McCall has absolutely zero business trying to box again.

Oliver McCall is an unstable man who is in dire need of both psychological and substance abuse rehabilitation centers.

Impressively, McCall has never been knocked down as a professional prizefighter.

However, if he doesn’t receive immediate help, Oliver McCall will never rise and survive the count of life.

Make sure to check out Boxing-Examiner">these other stories on the world of boxing.


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