Boxing great Marvelous Marvin Hagler dead at 66

Boxing legend Marvelous Marvin Hagler, a middleweight whose 1985 defeat of Tommy Hearns capped a dominant career, has died, his wife said Saturday. He was 66.

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“I am sorry to make a very sad announcement,” Hagler’s wife, Kay G. Hagler, wrote in a Facebook post on her husband’s fan club page.

“Today, unfortunately my beloved husband Marvelous Marvin, passed away unexpectedly at his home here in New Hampshire. Our family requests that you respect our privacy during this difficult time.”

Hagler, who was inducted into the International Boxing Hall of Fame in 1993. went 62-3-2 with 53 knockouts during his boxing career, which spanned from 1973 through 1987. He was the undisputed middleweight champion from 1980 to 1987 and made 12 title defenses. Hagler also was inducted into the World Boxing Hall of Fame in 1993.

I am sorry to make a very sad announcement. Today unfortunately my beloved husband Marvelous Marvin passed away...

Posted by Marvelous Marvin Hagler FAN CLUB on Saturday, March 13, 2021

The fierce-hitting left-hander won the middleweight title by knocking out Alan Minter in 1980. He went on to defeat challengers such as Vito Antuofermo, Mustafa Hamsho, Roberto Duran, Juan Roldan, John “The Beast” Mugabi, and Hearns.

Hagler’s third-round knockout victory against Hearns is regarded as one of the best fights of all-time.

The victory against Hearns in Las Vegas was one of Hagler’s two key victories in Las Vegas. He also outpointed Roberto Duran in 1983 to win a unanimous decision, also at Caesars Palace.

Hagler was named the 1980s Fighter of the Decade by Boxing Illustrated. The magazine tapped him as Fighter of the Year twice.

Hagler’s last fight was in 1987 when Sugar Ray Leonard came out of retirement and won a controversial 12-round split decision for the WBC middleweight title. Hagler retired after Leonard would not give him a rematch.

Fifty-two of Hagler’s career victories were by knockout, and he was only knocked down once in his career, Sports Illustrated reported.

Marvin Nathaniel Hagler was born May 23, 1954, in Newark, New Jersey. He moved with his family to Brockton, Massachusetts in the late 1960s, according to The Associated Press.

He legally changed his name in 1982 to Marvelous Marvin Hagler. After his boxing career ended, Hagler became an actor in Italy, Sports Illustrated reported.