By: Hans Themistode
After watching an older former boxing legend in Evander Holyfield suffer a brutal knockout defeat at the hands of Vitor Belfort, there was public outcry surrounding Riddick Bowe’s return to the ring. The 54-year-old former heavyweight champion was set to end his 13 year retirement on October 2nd, in a celebrity boxing match against 41-year-old former NBA star, Lamar Odom. However, after careful consideration, Bowe has been yanked from the card.
Although Bowe will no longer take part in the event from a boxing participant standpoint, he’ll still play a key role in promoting the show.
“This is entertainment,” said Damon Feldman, CEO of Celebrity Boxing during a recent interview. “I’m trying to put on a show. I’m not trying to get anyone’s head knocked off.”
Public outcries to have Bowe removed from the card began once Holyfield succumbed to a first-round stoppage defeat just a few short weeks ago. While he appeared to be in terrific shape, Holyfield simply wasn’t the same Hall of Fame fighter many had grown accustomed to seeing over the course of his career.
Holyfield’s unfortunate demise, coupled with recent workout footage of Bowe, forced Feldman to reconsider the main event on the night. While Bowe will no longer enter the ring, Odom is still expected to remain on the card. Currently, a replacement opponent is now being sought after.
Following a decade and a half playing career in the NBA, Odom is now trying his hand at boxing. After months of working on his craft, Odom stepped into the ring to take on singer/celebrity Aaron Carter in an exhibition contest. With the former ballplayer holding a ten-inch reach advantage, he had little to no trouble dealing with his man on the night, scoring the first-round stoppage win.
Also making an appearance on Odom’s upcoming card will be social media star Corey B, as he looks to put his long-standing feud with former two-division boxing champion, Paulie Malignaggi, to rest.