History | Dec 07 2018

On This Day: Sugar Ray Leonard and Roberto Duran left us bitterly disappointed

Sugar Ray Leonard took the money and ran! Roberto Duran, once a snarling lion in the ring, went out like a lamb as witnessed by Harry Mullan
Sugar Ray Leonard vs Roberto Duran

‘Superfight is just a mirage’ wrote Harry Mullan, in this, our original fight report from Leonard-Duran III on December 7, 1989 in Las Vegas.

THE decade went out with a whimper rather than a bang as the third super fight between Ray Leonard and Roberto Duran became the most disappointing major match-up since Muhammad Ali flopped against Larry Holmes in 1980.

Leonard won a landslide unanimous points decision, but will not look back on it with any great satisfaction. The pair earned a fortune – Leonard was guaranteed $17.6m, Duran $7.5m – but forfeited their reputations in the process.