It’s no secret that casinos and boxing go hand in hand. The gambling industry quickly saw the benefits of partnering with famous boxers.
Famous boxers have immortalized their names in neon in Las Vegas and Atlantic City, where some of the greatest fights have occurred on casino resort grounds.
Do you remember the Lennox Lewis–Wladimir Klitschko fight that took place at a Las Vegas casino? So Ocean’s Eleven never actually fought each other; that was just Hollywood imagination. Yet, many other exciting matches have taken place at casinos like Caesar’s Palace and the MGM, to name a few.
The connection between Sin City and boxing is evident, especially considering that many major fights have occurred on casino land, primarily in Las Vegas. While other cities and venues have made claims to the noble art, Las Vegas continues to draw superstars like Tyson Fury and Canelo lvarez.
The following is a list of the most notable and significant casino fights that have taken place over the years.
How Long Have Casinos Been Hosting Boxing Matches?
Las Vegas first hosted professional bouts in 1955, although the first significant fight didn’t occur in a casino but rather in a baseball stadium. Although, something was set off in Las Vegas and the casinos after the battle between Archie Moore and Nuno Valdez.
You can now enjoy the List of new Canada online casinos and wager on boxing events at a nettikasinot. Of course, if you wanted to see some of the biggest fight nights in history, you would have had to travel to a physical casino in the twentieth century.
Some of the biggest battles have happened far from the bright lights of Las Vegas or Atlantic City. The fights between Joe Louis and Max Schmelling are remembered as two of the greatest in boxing history. In the 1970s, however, Las Vegas became the site of major fights, with 1976’s Foreman vs. Lyle being remembered as one of the year’s greatest.
Casinos saw the potential in adding boxing to their lineup of entertainment options, and the ensuing bouts were often infamous, memorable, and even spectacular.
Michael Moorer vs George Foreman
This fight, which took place at the MGM Grand, which one many people thought would never occur. To begin with, there was a significant age disparity among the combatants. While Foreman was in his mid-40s, Moorer was just 26. The World Boxing Association (WBA) also tried to stop the match by threatening to take Moorer’s belt away if it continued. Combined with Foreman’s defeat at the hands of Tommy Morrison, it was clear that the fight wasn’t going to go down.
Foreman’s relentless pressure and devastating short right in the tenth round are what many remember most about the battle. But this battle is on the list because, in it, Foreman won back the Heavyweight Championship of the World, which he had lost to Muhammad Ali 20 years before.
Foreman’s final bout was against Shannon Briggs, and it took place in a casino. Foreman was so upset that he declared the bout to have been manipulated after he lost because he thought the judges had scored the fight incorrectly. The famous fighter never fought again after that.
Roy Jones Jr vs Montell Griffith I
Though it may not have been Jones’ best bout, the one at the Trump Taj Mahal Casino Resort will go down in the annals of boxing history. Jones looked untouchable in his prime thanks to his God-given powers, but in the ninth round, calamity struck.
Griffin took another powerful blow from the champion and appeared to have had enough, dropping to one knee. However, Jones lost control while down and tagged Griffin with two more punches, leading to his first career loss and disqualification.
Even after 75 fights, Jones Jr. still wants to continue competing. At the time of this writing, his record stood at 66 wins, 45 by knockout, and nine losses. The Welshman’s final fight was a decision loss to Joe Calzaghe, one of his nine defeats.
Mike Tyson vs Evander Holyfield II
The in-ring events of this battle have gained notoriety, but the drama was also occurring off the mat.
Tyson’s defeat in this bout, broadcast at the MGM Grand, brought in $1 billion for the pay-per-view industry. The former champion bit Holyfield, leading to his disqualification and eventual license suspension.
Sugar Ray Leonard vs Thomas Hearns
At no point in his brilliant career did Leonard shy away from taking on the heavy hitters in the ring. He took on boxing greats such as Hagler, Duran, and Hearns. As the champion and a proven performer, he entered the bout as a slight favorite.
However, Leonard was on the losing end of the fight for the most part. On day five, he started having trouble seeing out of his bulging eye. After four rounds of nonstop action, Hearns eventually took control of the bout by dominating the middle rounds.
Leonard’s trainer told him angrily that he was about to lose the championship, which sparked a fire in the champion. The fight was stopped in the 13th and 14th rounds when Hearns was hurt and pinned against the ropes.
Floyd Mayweather vs Manny Pacquiao
One way boxing and casinos are alike is in the enormous amount of money either may generate. The MGM Grand Garden Arena was the site of one of the highest-grossing fights ever. Following his bout against Manny Pacquiao, Floyd Mayweather walked away with an estimated $250,000,000.
Even while the fight itself wasn’t very memorable, the massive sums of money made from pay-per-view, ticket sales, merchandise, casinos, and bookmakers will ensure that it is forever remembered.
Holyfield vs. Bowe was one of the best fights ever in Las Vegas, but because it wasn’t held in a casino, it doesn’t cut here. But if there were slot machines with a boxing theme, they would undoubtedly be centered on bouts of that size.
Because of its age, Caesar’s Palace is no longer as glamorous as it once was and did not attract as many visitors. However, Las Vegas can still draw major fights, and casinos like MGM are helping to keep boxing relevant and successful.