Elite athletes sometimes struggle to cope with defeat in many sports, and boxers are certainly no different.
In the ultimate form of selfish one-on-one competition, it can be hard to accept that another guy is just better than you.
Over the years, this has led to some rather notable post-fight apologies…
Deontay Wilder’s Long List
Where to start with this one? In the wake of his defeat to Tyson Fury in their 2020 rematch, Wilder blamed the demise of his unbeaten record on just about everything he could think of.
First, the Bronze Bomber claimed his ringwalk suit was too heavy and said it weakened his legs.
He then accused Fury of tampering with gloves and insisted that the gypsy king put egg weights in them that left a dent in his head.
Wilder went on to say that he had been given a muscle relaxant and fired his assistant coach Mark Breland who he thought might be involved.
And finally, he accused referee Kenny Bayless of unfairly handling the match.
Admittedly, when the pair met again in their trilogy fight, Wilder showed himself much better, although he was eventually KOd and beaten again, with no apologies this time.
George Foreman’s Fake Friend
46 years before Wilder, Foreman was the ruthless heavyweight world champion who came out with a few excuses after losing his undefeated record.
Foreman’s 1974 ‘Rumble in the Jungle’ defeat to Muhammad Ali remains one of boxing’s most famous shocks to this day
The American insisted the ropes had been loosened from the ring to allow Ali to lean away from his punches, suggested he had eaten poisoned monkey fillet at the training camp and added that his water bottle had been punctured.
However, the main bizarre excuse followed in Foreman’s autobiography when he claimed to have seen a friend of his in the crowd cheering for Ali during the fight and this affected his concentration as he saw it as betrayal.
Years later, Foreman thought, “I wish I hadn’t made those excuses because it’s almost like scarring a big name.”
“The man beat me fair and square. He beat me up and I should have bathed him in his victory rather than come up with excuses to make him smaller.”
Carl Froch .’s Volcanic Ash Cloud
When Mikkel Kessler’s undefeated run came to an end in 2010, the Briton insisted a break in his fight preparation had played a big part.
A volcanic ash cloud from Iceland’s Eyjafjallajokull volcano at the time canceled several flights, including the one from Froch to Denmark a week before the fight in his opponent’s homeland.
He finally reached it via private jet on Wednesday, just three days before the fight.
After Kessler won by unanimous decision, Froch revealed he suffered a perforated eardrum while sparring and also blamed the ash cloud slowing down.
“There’s nothing more boring than listening to excuses, but I’d have been better off if that volcano hadn’t put all that ash in the air,” he said, “My flight was canceled, so I had a barbecue and had some burgers and popsicles.” .”
David Haye’s Broken Toe
After several years of hype and boasting, Haye was unable to make a dent in Wladimir Klitschko when they finally met in 2011.
The much anticipated clash played out in the typical fashion for heavyweight title fights at the time, when Klitschko took a dominant, unpleasant points win.
In the aftermath, the smitten Briton said he was prevented from pushing off on his back foot to make his biggest punches due to a pre-fight injury.
Fans weren’t too happy to find out it was just a broken little toe.
Haye showed the injury to the media during the post-fight press conference and as a result, he faced many years of ridicule.
Mike Tyson’s Broken Back
Unlike most on this list, Tyson’s odd excuse came after a win.
After what would turn out to be the last win of his career in 2003, ‘Iron Mike’ explained why he wasn’t at his best despite KOing Clifford Etienne in one round.
Interviewer Jim Gray asked, “Mike were you really sick this week, what was the problem?”
To which Tyson replied, “I broke my back, my back is broken.”
A stunned Gray added: “What do you mean by that? Which part? A vertebra?”
Tyson just hilariously responded, “Spinal.”
Years later, he explained that he actually suffered from back problems, but was not “eloquent” enough to express himself properly.
Manny Pacquiao’s Shoulder Injury
Pacquiao’s 2015 encounter with Floyd Mayweather remains the richest fight in boxing history to this day.
The globally anticipated showdown was finally made after years of hype and speculation about who would take the win.
When the pair finally got into the ring together, Mayweather completely destroyed Pacquiao and won a comfortable, disappointing unanimous decision.
At the post-fight press conference, the Filipino said he injured his right shoulder during training and had a recurrence during the fourth round.
He later had surgery to repair a torn rotator cuff, but gained little sympathy when he took on the biggest fight in boxing without telling the world he wouldn’t be at 100 percent.
The Bad Smell of Alexander Povetkin
Povetkin was a highly regarded undefeated heavyweight in 2012, en route to a title fight with Wladimir Klitschko.
When he faced Marco Huck, he came out victorious by majority decision, but his performance was hugely disappointing.
His trainer Alexander Zimin remarkably claimed that the reason for this was that Huck smelled so bad that it seriously affected Povetkin.
Zimin is quoted as saying, “On round five, I noticed Sasha’s eyes getting dull. When I asked him what was going on, he said that Huck’s body emitted such a bad stench that my fighter’s head went round and round…
“I don’t think Huck’s body happened to produce such a strong stench… I trained fighters in Japan for years and I must say that such methods are quite the norm in the Japanese professional boxing world. People have even lost their license due to such misdeeds.”
Vaseline by Wladimir Klitscho
Klitschko famously suffered three defeats in the relatively early stages of his career before reigning as heavyweight world champion for nearly a decade.
The third of these saw him astonishingly defeated by Lamon Brewster against all odds.
At this point, few could have predicted that Klitschko would have such a storied heavyweight career and all seemed lost for the Ukrainian.
As he struggled to come to terms with this, Klitschko claimed that his cornerman Joe Souza had applied too much petroleum jelly to his skin on all parts of his body, which clogged his pores and prevented him from sweating.
Souza and the Klitschkos never worked again.
888Sport: Liam Smith wins at 1/5 OR Hassan Mwakinyo wins at 66/1* – CLAIM HERE
Deposit min £/$/€10 using promo code 888ODDS • Bet up to £/$/€5 on your selection at regular odds in the regular market • If your selection wins we will pay you at the regular price and any additional winnings from the advertised increased prize will be paid to you in free bets • Free bets are awarded within 72 hours and expire after 7 days • Free bets are not included in returns • Deposit balance can be withdrawn at any time • Restrictions apply to withdrawals , payment methods and countries & full terms and conditions apply 18+ Begambleaware.org
View all free bets here