Audley Harrison retires from boxing

By Boxing News - 03/26/2015 - Comments

harrison564By Scott Gilfoid: In a not so surprising move, 43-year-old British heavyweight Audley Harrison (31-7, 23 KOs) has announced his retirement from boxing. Harrison made the announcement on his official website.

It’s not earth-shattering news though, because Harrison hasn’t fought in two years since being brutally knocked out in the 1st round by knockout artist Deontay Wilder in April 2013 in Sheffied.

This was before the 6’7” Deontay captured the WBC heavyweight title. For Harrison, this isn’t the first time that he’s retired from the sport, but it might the last time. At his age it’s not likely that he’ll be able to come back and make any kind of impact in the sport.

Besides being flattened in the 1st round by Deontay, Audley was knocked out in the 1st round by David Price in October of 2012, and the 3rd round by David Haye in November 2010.

Harrison had a moment of success late in his career when he captured the Prizefighter tournament 29 with a win over American Derric Rossey in February 2013. Harrison showed that he was still good enough to beat a number of 2nd tier heavyweights.

Unfortunately, Harrison returned to the ring two months later and was blasted out in just one round by Deontay Wilder. It was obviously too big of a jump up in class to go from beating up on 2nd tier guys to getting in the ring with a talent like Deontay. If Harrison been in there with someone that couldn’t punch like Tyson Fury, he might have done okay and given him problems. It was just a case of him fighting someone too good, too powerful and too young.

“My boxing career has come to an end,” Audley said. “I am no longer a professional boxer. I looked at the latest research into concussions and Traumatic Brain Injuries (TBI). After years of denial and sticking to my guns, I’m finally getting out of my own way. As tough as it is to say this, it’s time to stop. I’ve suffered a few TBIs and will have to work hard to reverse some of the effects taking punches to the head has brought about to my overall health.”

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Audley’s knockout losses to Price, Haye and Wilder were fights in which he took some big shots to the head from those guys. In each case, he was on shaky legs after getting hit hard. I mean, he tried his best in each of those fights, but he finished off quickly. In the Price and Haye fights, Audley kind of froze up and didn’t throw hardly any punches. It was kind of strange to watch him in those fights, because he didn’t even lets his hands go in any real way.

“I have vision problems, vestibular injuries that leads to balance disturbances, and have bouts of serious irritability and moodiness that comes with TBI recovery,” Audley said.

It’s hard to imagine Harrison staying retired on a permanent basis. I think we might see him again in the future if he gets an offer for good payday. Harrison still has a name, and that makes him appealing for some of the younger lions to face him in order to add his name to their resume.

In 2000, Audley captured the gold medal in the Olympics in the Super heavyweight class. He defeated Alexei Lezin (Russia), Alexey Mazikin (Ukraine), Paolo Vidoz (Italy) and Mukhtarkhan Dildabekov (Kazakhstan). None of those heavyweights has accomplished anything at the pro level.

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