Andrew Golota

From Academic Kids

Andrzej Gołota (born January 5 1968) is a professional boxer from Poland who has been involved in many controversial fights.

Golota had 111 wins in a stellar amateur career, that culminated in his winning a bronze medal at the 1988 Seoul Olympics. Golota won other international amateur tournaments, but in 1991, he and his wife decided to move permanently to the city of Chicago, where she had lived on and off since the age of nine.

In 1992, he turned professional, knocking out Roosevelt Shuler in three rounds. He had three more knockouts and then went the distance for the first time, when Robert Smith took him six rounds. Then, he went into a 16-fight knockout win streak, including wins over Bobby Crabtree and Jeff Lampkin. It was after the Crabtree win that Golota was featured on Ring Magazine's new faces section. Then, he faced tough contender Maron Wilson, winning by a decision in ten. Golota then went on another knockout streak that extended to five wins in a row, including defeats of Samson Po'hua and Darnell Nicholson, both of whom were considered fringe contenders back then.

Perhaps trying to earn a little more general respect for their fighter, Golota's management put their fighter in against former world Heavyweight champion Riddick Bowe at the Madison Square Garden, on an HBO Boxing event. Though far ahead on points, Golota suffered his first loss when Bowe went to the floor in round seven, claiming he had been hit with a low blow and leading to Golota's disqualification. What ensued was a dramatic riot that left a large number of civilians and policemen injured, including Golota himself, who was hit by a Bowe entourage man and required 11 stitches to close a cut on his head. Golota's trainer, Lou Duva, who has a heart condition, was taken to a hospital as a precaution.

The fight made all the sports shows, including SportsCenter, and the public immediately wanted to see Bowe and Golota go at it again. The rematch was on Pay Per View and Golota once again dominated Bowe only to be disqualified in the ninth round. Despite not having another riot, this fight also proved to be controversial and a protest was filed by Golota's camp to try to overturn the fight's result.

Despite two losses in a row, Golota's stock among the Heavyweights had risen so much that the WBC decided to make him their number one challenger, and so on October 4, 1997, he received a shot at the world's Heavyweight championship against Lennox Lewis, once again on HBO's Pay Per View branch. Golota was knocked out in the first round.

Golota went on with boxing, and he beat former 2-time world champion Tim Witherspoon by decision before losing to Michael Grant by a knockout in ten in one of The Rings 1999 fights of the year. Golota had dropped Grant twice in the first round and was far ahead on all scorecards, but in the tenth he himself was knocked down. When asked by referee Randy Neuman whether he wanted to continue, he shook his head twice and then haltingly answered "No."

In 2000, Golota fought in China's first professional boxing event ever, beating Marcus Rhodes by a knockout in three, and then, he faced Mike Tyson, in a fight that was later declared a no contest by the Michigan Boxing Commmision as Tyson tested positive for drug use.

Following the Tyson fight, Golota was inactive for nearly three years before making his return to the ring on August 14, 2003. He scored a technical knockout of journeyman Brian Nix in the seventh round. A few weeks later, he signed a promotional deal with Fight Academy, based in England, and announced he would pursue the European heavyweight championship. Golota then returned again, on November 15, knocking out Terrence Lewis in six rounds at Verona, New York.

Golota then received a second world title shot, fighting IBF world Heavyweight champion Chris Byrd at the Madison Square Garden on April 17, 2004. In what can perhaps be called an upset, he held Byrd to a draw (tie) after twelve rounds.

On November 13 of that year, he received his second world title try in a row: despite dropping WBA world champion John Ruiz twice, he lost by a unanimous decision in twelve rounds at the Madison Square Garden, in New York, although the vast majority of boxing experts felt that he was deserving of the win.

On May 21, 2005, Golota received his third world title try in a row, and fourth overall; being knocked out in the first round by WBO world champion Lamon Brewster.

His record stands at 38 wins, 6 losses, one no contest, and one draw, with 31 knockouts.

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