The Story of a fallen star – Ike Ibeabuchi

Ike Ibeabuchi

The date was June 7th 1997, at the Arco arena in Sacramento California, United States. Two undefeated prospects faced each other. On one corner stood a Samoan born fighter David Tua who was the betting favorite, Short, stout and undefeated  he was being hyped as the next Mike Tyson.

On the other corner stood Ike Ibeabuchi a Nigerian born fighter nicknamed the “President”, until this point previously unknown, weighing about 240 pounds and standing at 6ft2 he was indeed a heavyweight specimen.

By the end of the fight, records and bones had been broken Tua had surgery a week later to remove bone chips from his left elbow. Ibeabuchi set the Individual record for the most punches thrown in a fight by a  heavyweight with 975 punches with an average of 81 per round. A heavyweight normally averages at around 50 per round.  Both fighters also set a combined record for the most punches thrown in a heavyweight fight with 1,730 punches thrown, The fight was voted “Fight of the month”.

Ike Ibeabuchi won that fight by unanimous decision; the world had been introduced to a man deemed as the definition of a Zulu warrior. He had it all – Speed, Endurance, Power, Physique and a great chin.  After beating other notable fighters such as future world champion Chris Byrd, Ibeabuchi was well on his way to super stardom and becoming one of the greatest athletes ever to come out of Nigeria and Africa. Boxing pundits and analysts got excited and began comparing him to boxing greats such as Tyson and Foreman. Holyfield and Lennox Lewis who were champions at the time were already being pressured to face Ibeabuchi.

But all that was about to change, Ibeabuchi began to complain of serious headaches after his fight with Tua, he was taken to the hospital where he underwent an MRI scan but nothing was identified as a problem. Soon after, Ike began to hear voices and started acting irrational.

Displaying signs of schizophrenia the once promising fighter began to have numerous run ins with the law. Disturbingly enough, he attributed his irrational behavior to evil demons and spirits. In a meeting with HBO officials on a financial deal for his next fight, Ike wielded a knife in front of the officials ranting senseless sentences which contained a combination of paranoia and delusion.

Fast-forward to 2013, Ike Ibeabuchi currently sits in a prison cell at the Lovelock correctional center in Lovelock,Nevada. He has been incarcerated since 2001 stemming from an attempted sexual assault on a Las Vegas call girl in 1999. According to the call girl, she was contracted only to strip for Ibeabuchi and he “attacked” by trying to initiate sexual intercourse with her when she asked to be paid upfront.

Ike is serving a 2-10 year sentence and a consecutive 3-20 year sentence and he has been denied parole more than 3 times. He was eligible for parole last month (May 2013) details on the results of that parole hearing are yet to be released to the public.  In his time in prison he has earned two college degrees and a considerable amount of facial hair and body fat. Ibeabuchi was 26years old at the time of his conviction if he is released this year he will be 40years old and facing likely deportation to Nigeria.

Some people hope that he gets released this year so that he can continue to compete as a boxer. The question on the lips of most boxing fans are ” if he can be able to become world champion at 40 with up to 14 years of ring rust? “.

However the more important question should be why Ike Ibeabuchi has been locked up for so long? 14years for attempted sexual assault whilst Mike Tyson (my favorite boxer) who was convicted of rape only served 3 and a half years?

I love Mike Tyson and i personally believe that he was innocent. But the fact still stands that he was convicted for rape and he only served 3.5years.

Ibeabuchi’s offence is wrong and that behavior is not accepted anywhere in the world, But hasn’t he paid his dues? 14years is a lot of time. Why punish one of Africa’s greatest prospects? He has already been robbed of his youth and prime. Give this Nigerian hero a break. Iam sure he regrets the actions he took in the hotel room in Las Vegas.

So the question remains, How long will he be locked up for? And can he (if released anytime between now and 2014) become world champion at his age?

There is a lesson to be learnt here, whatever you do,  do not put yourself in a position where you stand a chance of being mistreated.

Feel free to voice your opinions in the comment box below.

 

 

 

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  • tome

    is just certin that they want to end him is just bad that somebody could end up like this but guess what america? he is my uncle and am come up start from were he stoped

  • Ray Pissed

    “Robbed” of his youth and prime? Would you consider this being robbed if that was your daughter or sister he assaulted? NO. So Fuck You.

    • Dap Sijuwade

      Evil and unforgiving person u are. The crime should fit the punishment. Turn the question around, would you want your son locked up and deprived of his dream for such relatively minor crime? The problem was about payment to a hooker, not rape.

  • enlightened one

    I was at the Byrd-Ibeabuchi fight and Chris is a friend so I asked him what happened after it was over. He told me the man was too big and strong for him. I think that sums it up quite nicely. The punch he was caught with wasn’t a clean punch either, he didn’t get hit flush and I’m thankful it wasn’t because it was a murderous shot. I also remember thinking at the weigh-in when they both stepped on the scales “ut ohhh,” this guy looked like a tank next to Chris. I give him credit for fighting Ibeabuchi, he had the heart of a Champion and took a chance; these days some fighters won’t step up to face the toughest in their weight class. Chris lost but at least he fought Ike.

    • I totally agree with you, Chris wasn’t even a true heavyweight to start with but he stepped up and tried to get the job done.

  • Chip Mitchell

    First of all, no hooker does outcall just to dance. That’s her story so she didn’t get popped for prostitution. Let’s start there. She negotiated a dummy price. She got there and tried to change up and dude got mad and tripped out.

  • me

    I work in the facility where he is housed, He is still locked up waiting deportation, he still hears those voices, he’s in segregation because he asked to be there, just stares doesn’t say a word, unless it’s to himself, because he talks to himself a lot, this guy is not right in the head

  • James Townes

    This may get some flake from the women out there.. But as I understand it, the female Ike raped was a prostitute, who agreed to strip for Ike.. Then Ike, being a man with a HO with a naked women standing before him lost control of himself… understandable.. She was a merchant, and her product was here body and sex.. If I had been his lawyer, I would have made a motion that the charges be reduced to shoplifting…

  • James Townes

    James Townes

    2 minutes ago

    This may get some flake from the women out there.. But as I
    understand it, the female Ike raped was a prostitute, who agreed to
    strip for Ike.. Then Ike, being a man with a HO and a naked women
    gyrating before him lost control of himself… understandable.. She was
    a merchant, and her product was her body and sex.. If I had been his
    lawyer, I would have made a motion that the charges be reduced to
    shoplifting…

  • Mark Connolly

    Ike got f*ck*d because his legal defense was sh*t…he earned two college degrees in jail, for example, what did Tyson earn? Free Ike and let him fight.