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43 years ago

Thomas Hearns vs Randy Shields

Thomas Hearns vs Randy Shields

Date: 25th April 1981

Venue: Veteran's Memorial Coliseum, Phoenix, Arizona

Title: WBA World Welterweight Title

Promoter: Bob Arum

Tv: ABC World of Sport

Thomas Hearns
( 30 - 0 - 0 )
Weight: 146 lbs

Randy Shields
( 38 - 6 - 1 )
Weight: 146 1/2 lbs

The Veteran's Memorial Coliseum in Phoenix, Arizona was the venue for the WBA World Welterweight Title fight between Thomas Hearns and Randy Shields on the 25th of April 1981. The fight was promoted by Top Rank, with Robert Ferrara as the referee. This was Hearns' 2nd defense of his title, with a record of 29 wins and no losses. Shields, from North Hollywood, California, had a record of 38 wins, 6 losses and a single draw going into this fight.

There was Interest in how Hearns would deal with the crafty Shields who had taken Hearn's great rival, Sugar Ray Leonard the distance in a 10-rounder 3 years earlier. A crowd of about 8,500 in attendance knew the Leonard vs Hearns bout was to be announced soon. The fight started with Hearns taking control, using his longer reach to keep Shields at bay. Shields was game and tried to work his way inside, but Hearns' combination punching was too much for him. The fight was rough all the way, with both fighters being warned frequently by the referee for fouls.

In the eighth round, Hearns cut Shields above the right eye, and in the ninth, he cut him above the left eye. These cuts would prove to be a major factor in the outcome of the fight. Shields continued to be game and fought on, but by the end of the twelfth, he couldn't see due to the blood in his eyes, and the fight was stopped.

There were no knockdowns in the fight, but Hearns was in complete control throughout, and it was evident that Shields was outclassed. Hearns' combination punching, footwork, and defence were all on display, and he showed why he was the champion. Shields was game and fought with heart, but he just couldn't overcome Hearns' superior skills.

Thomas Hearns vs Randy Shields on YouTube

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