During his 15-year career as a professional boxer, Chris Byrd won two heavyweight title belts. But he wasn't big enough to fight the biggest heavyweights, so he decided to lose about 30 pounds and fight at light heavyweight.
His first light heavyweight fight was last night, and it went so badly that it will also be his last. Fighting a mediocre boxer named Shaun George, Byrd was pummeled mercilessly, and after the fight, his wife made clear that his career is over. From Tim Smith of ESPN.com:
"I'm not letting him fight anymore," said Tracey Byrd, choking back tears in a telephone conversation from Valley Hospital in Las Vegas late Friday night. "It's almost a relief to know that he's not going to do it anymore. It probably isn't a relief to him because he's so competitive. But for those around him, it's a relief."The TV cameras caught Byrd apologizing to his family in the ring after the fight, but he has nothing to be sorry for. He's just a 37-year-old with nothing left. Every athlete gets there eventually.
And what if Byrd refuses to give it up? "He would have to try to do it without my support," she said. "And I don't think he wants to do that."