Wednesday, December 11, 2002



Posted By on Wed, Dec 11, 2002 at 4:00 AM

Thomas "Hitman" Hearns
Michael Jordan isn’t the only veteran who has made the transition from sports hero, to retired superstar, and back to the arena again. Boxing legend Thomas “Hitman” Hearns is coming out of retirement to prove that he’s still got what it takes to be a champion.
Just six years from getting his AARP membership card, Hearns, 44, will begin his quest for success January 17th, at the DeSoto Civic Center in Southaven. His post-retirement debut pits the 6-foot-1-inch Hearns against 5-foot-10-inch Thomas Reid in a 10-round cruiserweight fight.
“I’ve been working for six months to get [the fight] together,” said promoter Randy Fielder of the Hearns camp. “We were here for the Lewis-Tyson fight in June. .... We couldn’t afford the Pyramid, but we chose the Civic Center because it was the best venue and deal for the money [available].” Fielder also said Hearns, who is a native Memphian, wanted to begin his quest in the South.
The World Boxing Association lists Reid’s last fight in October against Julio Cesar Gonzalez. Reid lost the light heavyweight bout with a technical knockout in the third round.
Although this fight is not a championship match, it could be the first of a trilogy of fights leading to the 190-pound cruiserweight division title. If successful, Hearns will be the only fighter to hold eight world titles in seven different weight classes.
According to Fielder, Hearns has been in training with longtime and legendary manager and trainer Emanuel Steward. Steward has not only coached Hearns to several previous title victories but is also the trainer for Lennox Lewis, who defeated Mike Tyson for the heavyweight title earlier this year.
Hearns has held world titles as welterweight, junior middleweight, middleweight, and light heavyweight. Four career losses have come against Sugar Ray Leonard, “Marvelous” Marvin Hagler, and twice to Iran Barkley. Hearns holds a professional record of 59 wins, four loses, and one tie, with 46 knockouts.

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