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Outside of a fight being cancelled or a fighter getting cut during a fight, there is nothing more frustrating than when a referee calls for a boxer to be disqualified from a bout due to their antics. Last Saturday night in Las Vegas, Brandon Rios comeback Argentinian opponent Diego Chaves was disqualified after being warned several times for unsportsmanlike conduct in the tenth round. Rios himself was deducted a point in the fifth for handling Chaves to the canvas. Other fouls in the fight included rubbing the glove against the face, excessive clinching and butting, continuing a disappointing run of bad fortune for Rios, who was also caught after his fight with Manny Pacquiao for using a banned performance enhancer.
The history of the sport consists of some anticipated and memorable fights concluding with disqualifications. This is what is going to be analyzed today.
Mike Tyson vs Peter McNeeley
Not having fought in four years after being incarcerated for a rape conviction in Indiana, Mke Tyson started his quest for boxing dominance in 1995. The Brooklyn bomber hooked up with promoter Don King once again who wasted no time in organising a Pay Per View fight with the obscure Peter McNeeley. The Pay Per View would go on to set a record for being the most successful PPV event, but this achievement would be bettered just over a year later when Tyson faced Evander Holyfield. The colourful McNeeley ran out of his corner at Tyson, throwing whatever he could but a right hook from Tyson floored him. Unceasing, McNeeley continued after making it to his feet but was put on his behind again after an uppercut connected upstairs. This time McNeeley was on unsteady legs and the smug grin he wore during referee Mills Lane's instructions now disappeared. A moment later his trainer, Vinnie Vecchione jumped into the ring to save his guy and Lane had no choice but to end the fight in Tyson's favour of a disqualification.
Riddick Bowe vs Andrew Golota
Andrew Golota was already known for fouling, after biting Samson Po'hua but it seems that Riddick Bowe either didn't know or did not care as he came into the ring to face Golota overweight after only lightly training for the fight. It was a move that he almost paid the price for as he was staggered by Golota's surprisingly fast hands. However, the only man that would receive a loss on this particular occasion would be the Pole as he continuously punched Bowe low. In the seventh Golota was told to pack his bags as he was disqualified. A few moments later one of Bowe's cornermen jumped into the ring and hit Golota on the head with his mobile phone, a move that initiated one of the worst violent crowd frenzies associated with boxing. The two fighters fought in a rematch which ended with the same result, this time in the ninth round and the winner, Bowe, finished the fight lying on his back.
Roy Jones vs Montell Griffin
Jones was riding high during the mid 1990's, showing off his skills and his always relaxed composure to his opponent and the crowds, but he did not have it his own way in 1997 when Montell Griffin gave Jones a grinding fight. The challenger commanded the early part of the fight but by the midway point Jones was clawing his way back. In the ninth round Jones hurt Griffin with a right to the head. Griffin went down on one knee but Jones followed up with a right and left combination upstairs. Jones experienced his first defeat in the form of a disqualification. He redeemed himself in their rematch, knocking Griffin out in the first round and continued his reign of dominance.
Marco Antonio Barrera vs Junior Jones
People often say that styles make fights in boxing and perhaps this rung true for the fight between Barrera and Jones. Barrera was making his ninth defense of the WBO super-bantamweight crown and could not cope with the awkward angles, the jab and footwork of Jones who evidently was too athletic for the Mexican. Bleeding and down in the fifth round, Barrera got up to take more blows but his cornerman jumped into the ring to save him from being hurt further, a move that is illegal in boxing and is a straight disqualification for their fighters. Barrera also lost the rematch to Jones on points but did reinvent himself in the early 2000's with his epic fights with Erik Morales and giving Naseem Hamed a humbling experience.
Mike Tyson vs Evander Holyfield II
The then biggest heavyweight fight in history, all eyes were on the mega rematch to see if Tyson could rip back his WBA crown from Holyfield. But rather than let his fists do the talking, Tyson bit Holyfield when the two came together in a clinch in the third round. Holyfield showed an oblivious Mills Lane the grisly sight on the side of his head and a couple of points were deducted from Tyson. The action was allowed to continue but Tyson bit down on Holyfield's ear once again and was promptly disqualified, bringing a gutting conclusion. Tyson was suspended from boxing for one year and Holyfield went on to try and unify the heavyweight titles and capturing a piece of the crown for a fourth time, making him the first heavyweight boxer to do so.
Lennox Lewis vs Henry Akinwande
Although not a fight that people were particularly aware of, it boggles the mind how a fighter can be given a shot at the heavyweight title only for them to not grasp it with both hands. Literally. Well, that was the case with Henry Akinwande as he immoderately clinched champion Lennox Lewis until he was disqualified in the fifth round by Mills Lane. At his own insistence, Lane begged Akinwande's trainer Don Turner to talk some sense into him but it was to no avail and there was no other option but to award the win to Lewis. This was Lane's second consecutive disqualification ruling after having supervised the Tyson vs Holyfield II fight a month earlier.