American boxing legend “Marvin Hagler”, the undisputed world middleweight champion from 1980 to 1987, has died, his wife said. He was 66.
According to a post on the famed fighter’s Facebook page, Kay G Hagler said her husband has passed on,
“I am sorry to make a very sad announcement. Today unfortunately my beloved husband Marvellous Marvin passed away unexpectedly at his home here in New Hampshire,” she wrote. “Our family requests that you respect our privacy during this difficult time.”
“Marvellous” Marvin Hagler fought from 1973 to 1987 and delivered some epic bouts in a golden era of the sport, finishing with a record of 62-3 with two drawn and 52 knockouts.
The southpaw’s most heralded triumph came in a 1985 matchup at Caesars Palace in Las Vegas against Thomas “Hitman” Hearns, which lasted just over eight minutes but was regarded as a classic that became known simply as “The War”.
After a first round filled with power punches in which Hearns suffered a broken right hand, Hagler suffered a cut to the head early in the second.
A ringside doctor examined Hagler in the third round and the fight went on. Hagler wobbled Hearns with a powerhouse right and sent him to the canvas moments later, Hearns rising only to collapse into referee Richard Steele’s arms.
Hagler won the World Boxing Council and World Boxing Association middleweight titles in 1980, stopping Britain’s Alan Minter in the third round at London’s Wembley Arena, and added the International Boxing Federation’s inaugural title in 1983.
Marvin Hagler was inducted into the International Boxing Hall of Fame in 1993 [Juma
Hagler defended the undisputed crown 12 times, including a 15-round unanimous decision victory over Panama’s Roberto Duran in 1983 and his final triumph, an 11th-round knockout of unbeaten Ugandan John Mugabi in 1986.
“Marvelous Marvin Hagler was among the greatest athletes that Top Rank ever promoted,” legendary US promoter Bob Arum said. “He was a man of honour and a man of his word, and he performed in the ring with unparalleled determination.”