Larry Holmes is considered by most to be one of the greatest heavyweight boxers of all time. During his prime in the early 1980s, Holmes defended his title 19 times en route to a 48-0 record. He retired in 2002 with a 69-6 record. Where is Larry Holmes today, and what is his net worth?
Larry Holmes and his special friendship with Muhammad Ali
Before Larry Holmes ever made a name for himself, he learned the ropes against some of boxing’s best. Holmes regularly sparred against champions, including Earnie Shavers, Jimmy Young, and the great Muhammad Ali.
“Ali is my friend. I’ve known him since he gave me a job as his sparring partner,” Holmes said back in 2009 when talking about the ESPN documentary Muhammad and Larry. “He gave me an opportunity. Just having the opportunity to work with him and to learn from him and to get paid was a helluva thing.”
After Holmes defeated Ken Norton in June 1978 to claim the WBC heavyweight title and improve his record to 28-0, Holmes took on his former sparring partner and friend two years later for the vacant The Ring and lineal heavyweight titles. Holmes dominated Ali, who had come out of retirement, winning every round on every scorecard. Ali’s trainer, Angelo Dundee, stopped the fight in the 10th round.
For years Holmes heard numerous reasons as to why Ali lost. Holmes said the reason was simple. “Ali was a great champion and a great fighter. I beat him up. But I didn’t beat him up because he couldn’t fight. I beat him up because I could fight.”
Holmes dominates heavyweight division for years
The defeat of Ali was Larry Holmes’ eighth title defense of his WBC belt. For the next five years, Holmes stood alone atop the heavyweight standings defending his titles a total of 12 more times against the likes of Trevor Berbick, Leon Spinks, and Carl Williams.
On September 21, 1985, Holmes took on Michael Spinks, who was the undisputed light heavyweight champion. A victory by Holmes would have secured his place in history by tying him with Rocky Marciano for the most consecutive wins without a loss at 49-0.
Instead, it was Spinks who made history defeating Holmes by unanimous decision to become the first-ever reigning light heavyweight champion to win the heavyweight title. Holmes and Spinks met in a rematch seven months later. Once again Spinks won, this time by a controversial split-decision. Holmes retired later in 1986.
Larry Holmes makes multiple comebacks
Almost two years after retiring, Larry Holmes was lured back into the ring with a chance to reclaim the title belts. Only problem was the man holding those titles was Mike Tyson. Tyson dispatched of Holmes in just four rounds, which sent Holmes back into retirement.
Three years later, the ring called again. Holmes achieved much better results in his second comeback, and it lasted much longer. Over the next decade Holmes fought 24 times, which included three title fights. The biggest coming in 1992 when Holmes challenged the champion Evander Holyfield. Holmes took Holyfield the distance but lost by unanimous decision.
In 2002, Holmes fought for the last time and defeated Eric “Butterbean” Esch. He retired for good later that year and finished with a 69-6 record. He was inducted into the International Boxing Hall of Fame in 2008.
Where is Larry Holmes today, and what is his net worth?
Each time Larry Holmes retired, including the last time in 2002, he returned to his roots in Easton, Pennsylvania. Holmes, whose nickname was “The Easton Assassin,” has stayed in Easton all these years. He’s opened a variety of businesses through the years, including restaurants, a nightclub, a training facility, and an office complex. He’s a regular around town.
The 70-year-old Holmes, who has a reported net worth of $18 million, has seen recent headlines about former foes, including Mike Tyson making a return to the ring. Holmes and former fighter and friend Gerry Cooney have discussed the possibility of a playful charitable exhibition, but with the pandemic have put those thoughts on the back burner.
Whether or not Holmes makes a third comeback to boxing remains to be seen. One thing is certain—Holmes established his legacy long ago as one of the greatest heavyweights ever, and nothing will ever change that.