Highlight 4 | Issue | Opinion | Premium | Jul 16 2019

Paying tribute to the brilliant Pernell Whitaker

The genius of his art is undeniable. Nigel Collins on Pernell Whitaker, who has died aged just 55
Pernell Whitaker
Action Images/Reuters

CHARLES DICKENS’ Artful Dodger had nothing on Pernell Whitaker, the four-division former champion, whose defensive wizardly made him nearly impossible to hit during his prime.  

The Artful Dodger picked pockets for a living. “Sweet Pea” picked apart the best fighters of his generation, winning world titles in four divisions—lightweight, super-lightweight, welterweight and super-welterweight.

Sadly, Whitaker, 55, was hit and killed by a car last Sunday as he walked across an intersection in Virginia Beach, a paradoxical ending for a man who had eluded the dangers of the ring so successfully for so long.


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