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Author Topic: Michael Dokes battling cancer  (Read 369 times)
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« on: July 07, 2012, 11:27:29 AM »

Heard something on Ringside about him but wasn't sure what they were on about, had a quick search and found this, sad times.


Former world heavyweight champion Michael Marshall "Dynamite" Dokes is fighting the good fight but his opponent may be unbeatable.

Dokes, who will turn age 54 in August, is said to be in "the later rounds" of a debilitating battle with stomach and liver cancer. The one-time WBA champion, who compiled a 53-6-2 record with 34 KOs and who lost by a single point to three time Olympic gold medalist Teofilo Stevenson of Cuba in the 1975 Pan American Games, is living with a sister in his hometown of Akron, Ohio.

Dokes' lifelong buddy, manager and cornerman Sterling McPherson, also from Ohio by birth, confirmed Dokes' medical situation.

"I'm going back to Akron soon," Las Vegas resident and ex-pro lightweight McPherson said by phone on Monday. "Mike's been sick for a while. I got into the Ohio Hall Of Fame last fall and he showed up. A month or so ago, we had a good phone conversation but when it gets bad for him, it gets bad.

"Look at Michael Dokes at age 17 and you saw tremendous ability, natural ability, him nearly beating the great Stevenson on ABC's Wide World Of Sports. They saw the next Muhammad Ali when they saw Michael then. He had tremendous hand speed and punching power. He was the guy and expectations for him were so high."

Before cocaine took over his ring career and his life, Dokes was a superb boxer and a wicked puncher whose nickname was not to be taken lightly.

"Michael just steered off the right path," McPherson said. "But oh, he could fight. He had an amateur resume that Holmes did not have. Larry was an undisclosed guy who became a great champ. Dokes was a known product as a teenager in the amateurs. Dokes had the validity of beating guys like Greg Page and Big John Tate."

Three of his six career losses were to heavyweight champions Riddick Bowe, Evander Holyfield and awesome puncher Gerrie Coetzee, the fourth was to formidable Razor Ruddock and the final two were to palookas in his final pro ring appearances in 1990.

It was "Mac" as Dokes refers to McPherson who jumped into a Ceasars Palace ring and wrapped his arms around Dokes, stopping the Holyfield bout as Evander was battering him.

"I beat (referee) Richard Steele to stopping it, I had to do that," McPherson said.

Dokes was given a 4-15 year Nevada prison sentence in 1999 for assaulting a woman and wound up serving a decade behind bars.

Dokes, who spent his early pro career in the big shadow of also Don King handled heavyweight champ Larry Holmes, was one of the most accomplished American amateur boxers ever. For a long while, King was content to control the WBC heavyweight crown with Holmes and the WBA belt through Dokes. At 6-3 and 238 pounds, Dokes looked unbeatable early on.

At age 15, a year too young to legally compete, Dokes lost in the National Golden Gloves to Leon Spinks and to Bobby Stewart, who was the juvenile prison official who later brought a kid named Mike Tyson under the protective wing of Cus D'Amato.

http://www.boxingscene.com/?m=show&opt=printable&id=54587
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