Back in 1994, British boxer Joe ‘Lethal Weapon’ Savage was making a lot of noise. He was a legend on the underground bare-knuckle boxing circuit, claiming the heavyweight crown after 42 knockouts. Joe was a big bruiser of a man who looked the part with his shaven head, big arms and numerous tattoos. Many thought he would not have looked out of place on the Victorian bare-knuckle scene. Back then, Savage claimed he was unbeatable, and regularly tried to get the opportunity to prove it by calling out and challenging some of the biggest names in pro boxing at that time. Names such as Mike Tyson and Lennox Lewis. Indeed, he once challenged Lewis and fellow heavyweight world champion Frank Bruno to a fight in one night. “I challenge Lennox Lewis and Frank Bruno,” Savage said at the time, “in the same night. I’ll knock them out.”
The big names refused to step in the ring with this old-school bruiser, such was their fear of Savage’s vicious reputation and legendary one punch knockouts. After all, who wants to go toe-to-toe with a man whose catchphrase is, ‘I’ll kill everybody.”?
Step forward former world heavyweight title challenger, Smokin’ Bert Cooper. Fresh off a humiliating knock-out defeat at the hands of Larry Donald, Cooper had nothing to lose. “F*ck it,” he told a friend at the time. “If I die, I die.” The two would clash at the Civic Arena, Nanaimo, British Columbia, Canada on the 22nd August 1994. The bout would indeed be decided by knockout, but who would deal the decisive blow?
Watch the video to find out.