Holyfield's hard lefts hammer Savarese in 10-round unanimous decision

Updated: July 2, 2007, 1:30 PM ET
Associated Press

EL PASO, Texas -- Evander Holyfield outworked and outclassed Lou Savarese on Saturday night, winning a 10-round unanimous decision to remain undefeated in his latest comeback.

Holyfield, the 44-year-old former heavyweight champion, started and ended the fight with a hard left to the head of the 41-year-old Savarese. In between, Holyfield was in control.

CLASSIC REPLAY
Watch a replay of Holyfield-Savarese Saturday, July 7 at 8 p.m. ET on ESPN Classic.

The judges scored it 98-90, 99-87 and 96-91.

Savarese, a former title contender himself, held his own for the first eight rounds before being knocked off his feet with a hard left to the chin.

Holyfield (42-8-2) knocked Savarese (46-7) to the mat again in the 10th, with Savarese looking as though he was hoping to just stay upright.

Holyfield came in weighing 219 pounds, giving Savarese a 23-pound advantage that wasn't all that tough to overcome.

"Lou hurt me with an upper cut [in the third]...but I got away from the next one," Holyfield said after the fight.

That was about the only stunning shot for Savarese, who himself had been on the comeback trail.

Holyfield said after a quick try at fighting the taller Savarese on the inside, he moved to the outside and did his best to land some quick, hard left jabs.

Savarese did a good job of dodging second hits, Holyfield said.

Savarese, looking swollen and battered, said that the fight was his last.

"I fought hard," he said. "I gave it my all."

It was Holyfield's fourth bout since returning to boxing after a two-year layoff. His goal is to win an unprecedented fifth heavyweight title and unify the belts in the messy division before retiring for good.

Saturday's result was a big step toward possibly getting another crack at one of the many fighters holding a heavyweight championship belt.

For his part, Holyfield said he believes a title shot will be next.

"I will be the five-time undisputed heavyweight champion of the world," Holyfield said.

Holyfield last held the undisputed championship after a 1990 win against James "Buster" Douglas.

Holyfield started his comeback in Texas last year. Despite his wins, Holyfield is just three years removed from losing his license to fight in New York, where boxing officials cited diminished skills shortly after losing an ugly 12-round decision to Larry Donald.

Holyfield's professional career dates to 1984, and he's hoping to become the oldest heavyweight champion ever, surpassing George Foreman's record.


Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press