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Friday, 25 April 2014 04:00

Aaron Pryor: Bizarre KO in comeback; What happened? (VIDEO)

Written by
Bobby Joe Young KO 7 Aaron Pryor
August 8, 1987

Location: Sunrise Musical Theatre, Fort Lauderdale, Florida, USA

Referee: Bernie Soto

Division: Welterweights

Pryor vs Young Stats & Facts
  • Aaron Pryor (36-0) vs Bobby Joe Young (29-6-1)
  • Boxing great Aaron Pryor was on the top of his game before a serious addiction to cocaine ruined what would have likely been a legendary career.
  • Seemingly sober and after a 2 1/2 year hiatus from boxing, the then-undefeated former jr welterweight champion got his first taste of defeat against the unheralded Bobby Joe Young in the former's first comeback bout.
  • The KO was quite unique; Pryor took a hard, flush right to the head and staggered a bit before falling to the canvas. Pryor arose quickly but with his back to the referee. And then, the former champ dropped to one knee, crossed himself and remained on the canvas until the count reached ten.
  • "He was dazed," said Walter Alvarez, Pryor's promoter. "He thought he hadn't been down. He thought he had more time."
  • This was a very different Aaron Pryor than what fans were accustomed to. Although only 31, Pryor looked "old." His timing and balance were poor and his body lacked the lean muscle tone it once had.
  • Even before the knockout, Pryor had suffered a knockdown and was staggered several times.
  • Young later insisted Pryor, during the bout, was at least 90 percent of the fighter he used to be. (Ummm... No. Nice try Bobby Joe)
  • Apparently Team Pryor filed a protest after the fight, insisting Young's corner used ammonia capsules to enhance the performance of their fighter between rounds. If fact, a representative of the Florida State Athletic Commission, said: "An ammonia capsule was found around ringside. But it's going to be hard to prove how it was used. Nobody saw it being used. We'll see if anything shows up in the post-fight tests."
  • Pryor would KO his next three "modest" opponents before officially leaving the game in 1990 with an outstanding  record of 39-1, 35 KOs
  • Before the fight, former rival and fight superstar Arguello visited Pryor's dressing room, pleading with the seemingly unfit Pryor to cancel the fight