Feature | Feb 09 2020

The name’s Hearns, Thomas Hearns

Thomas Hearns, one of the most thrilling fighters in the history of boxing, looks back on a truly incredible career with Thomas Gerbasi

FIRST, a little myth busting. It was once said that the only thing worse for your health than challenging Thomas Hearns to a fight was calling him “Tommy.” But the man who also went by the “Hitman” and “Motor City Cobra” monikers admits that such rumors were just that.

“My name is Thomas ‘Hitman’ Hearns and some people just shortened it to Tommy, but I didn’t have a problem with it,” he said with a chuckle. “It’s still my name. As long as you called me.”

Oh, they called him, all right. And whenever presented with a fight, Hearns answered, to the tune of 61 wins, just five losses, and one draw. Along the way, he earned world titles in six weight classes from welterweight to light heavyweight during a pro career that began in 1977 and ended in 2006, making it no surprise that the calls the 60-year-old gets these days are for various boxing halls of fame.