2002-06-08 Lennox Lewis w co 8 Mike Tyson, The Pyramid, Memphis, Tennessee, USA - WBC/IBF/The Ring
2002-06-08 Lennox Lewis w co 8 Mike Tyson, The Pyramid, Memphis, Tennessee, USA - WBC/IBF/The Ring. Referee: Eddie Cotton. This was the one everybody had been waiting for; the defining fight in Lewis’ career and the one that would tell us whether Tyson (234½) was a spent force. Once the fight was underway it was clear that all the questions were going to be answered as Tyson, unable to respond to the Lewis (249¼) left jab and with his right eye cut in the third, was beginning to be gradually taken apart. Pushed over in the fourth, the former ‘great’ was becoming desperate as he was, by now, being completely outboxed with no idea of how to handle it. Nearly taken out in the seventh, with the bell coming to his rescue, a left uppercut smashed all remaining resistance out of him in the eighth and he took a count of eight before a tremendous right hand from Lewis landed right on the jaw smashing him to the canvas where he was counted out at the 2.25 mark.
Lewis gave up the IBF belt on 5 September rather than defend against Chris Byrd, who was then selected to meet Evander Holyfield to decide the vacancy, On 1 June Holyfield had won a WBA eliminating contest when beating Hasim Rahman, thanks to an eight-round technical decision.