Donovan "Razor" Ruddock (born December 21, 1963) is a Canadian former professional boxer who competed from 1982 to 2001, and in 2015. One of the best exhibitions of his left hand power was his knockout of former WBA heavyweight champion Michael Dokes in 1990. Ruddock is also known for his two fights against Mike Tyson in 1991, and Lennox Lewis in 1992.

Professional career

Early years

As an amateur, Ruddock had a win over Lennox Lewis.[1] He turned pro in 1982, but his career started slowly, having only 11 fights between 1982 and 1985. He won eight of his first nine fights, but drew his fifth. More controversy would follow in April 1985 when he lost to journeyman David Jaco, who would be KO'd by a young Mike Tyson the next year. After eight rounds Ruddock's corner threw in the towel when he complained of breathing problems. Jaco was awarded a TKO victory. It was discovered Ruddock had a rare respiratory illness and doctors told him his career would be over.

Return to the ring

After taking 10 months off after rehabilitation Ruddock made a full recovery to the doctors' surprise and resumed his boxing career winning 9 straight fights, 8 of them by KO also picking up an impressive decision win over former WBA heavyweight title-holder Mike Weaver before winning the Canadian heavyweight championship by a first-round knockout against Ken Lakusta in 1988

In 1989, after two more wins by KO, a fight with another former WBA heavyweight title-holder was made, against the hard-hitting James "Bonecrusher" Smith. In the round 2, Ruddock was floored heavily by Smith but showed his heart by getting up, coming back in the round, and impressively knocking out Smith in round 7.

A title bout was made with undisputed heavyweight champion Mike Tyson, scheduled for November 1989 in Edmonton, Alberta.[2] Tyson, claiming illness, cancelled and opted instead to fight James "Buster" Douglas in Tokyo. Tyson would go on to lose in one of the biggest upsets in boxing history.

Ruddock vs Dokes

1990, Ruddock fought former heavyweight champion Michael Dokes. Ruddock went into the fight as underdog but put on one of the best performances of his career knocking out Dokes in the 4th round. Dokes appeared to be seriously stunned on the ropes after taking Ruddock's famous "Smash" left hook. A right hand followed, which appeared to put Dokes out, but Ruddock threw another two hooks and Dokes was knocked out cold for minutes.

Difficulty finding opponents

After another KO win over Kimmuel Odum in 1990, Ruddock had difficulty finding a marquee opponent.[3] Ruddock hoped to fight Evander Holyfield (fresh from a KO win over James "Buster" Douglas for the heavyweight championship). Instead, Holyfield opted to fight 42-year-old George Foreman.[4]

Mike Tyson

With no big name opponent, Ruddock took a warm up fight against Mike Rouse in December 1990 winning by 1st round knockout. The boxing world[who?] was calling for Holyfield, Bowe and Tyson to fight Ruddock and prove who was the best heavyweight. Ruddock would finally get his big fight in 1991 after it was announced in January that Ruddock would fight Mike Tyson in March after Tyson accepted Ruddock's challenge. Both fighters were praised in the boxing world[who?] for making the fight happen and it was seen by many as the fight between the two best heavyweights in the world as Evander Holyfield was still lightly regarded as champion. It would pit Tyson, the number #1 contender, against Ruddock who was number #2, for the right to fight the winner of Holyfield-Foreman.

Tyson vs Ruddock

Tyson-Ruddock happened on March 18, 1991. The fight received much attention and at the time was one of the biggest pay-per-view fights to date. The fight was brutal with Tyson scoring a knockdown in round 2 and then knocking Ruddock down toward the end of round 3. The fight went back and forth with Ruddock showing incredible heart and determination. Ruddock had his big moment in round 6 after connecting with some big shots and an uppercut that stunned Tyson before the bell sounded. Tyson started Round 7 charging at Ruddock and catching him with numerous big shots. Referee Richard Steele controversially stopped the fight even though it appeared Ruddock, although staggering, was healthy enough to continue. The premature stoppage caused tempers to boil over with people angry at the decision. Fighting broke out between both camps in the ring. Steele had to be escorted out of the ring after the angry protests. The only people who seemed calm through it all were the two fighters who both praised each other after the fight with Tyson saying "He punches like a fucking mule kick", stating it was the hardest he'd ever been hit, something he still says to this day.

Tyson vs Ruddock II

After such a controversial first meeting, a rematch was called for. The second Tyson-Ruddock fight took place on June 28, 1991.

The rematch went the distance, a full 12 rounds. Tyson knocked Ruddock down twice during the bout, and won by unanimous decision. The severity of the struggle was evident on both fighters after the fight: Ruddock had a broken jaw and Tyson suffered a perforated eardrum. Sports Illustrated reported that Ruddock's jaw may have been broken as early as the fourth round.[5] Tyson was magnanimous after his triumph, praising Ruddock as a great heavyweight: "Man this guy is tough, he'll be champion of the world one day if he stays dedicated and doesn't slip up."

After Tyson

After losing to Tyson for the second time, Ruddock picked up victories over former heavyweight champion Greg Page and got a win over undefeated hope Phil Jackson; both fights again were won by KO. Those victories set up a bout with Lennox Lewis in London on Halloween 1992. The bout was an official WBC Final Eliminator and seen as an elimination bout for the opportunity to face the winner of the upcoming Bowe - Holyfield match.[6] Ruddock was knocked out in the second round.[citation needed]

After more than two years out after the Lewis defeat Ruddock came back in 1994 with a points win over Anthony Wade which led to a fight with Tommy Morrison in 1995. In the first round he put Morrison down, but let the opportunity for an early stoppage slip, and was given a count himself in the second round after grabbing the ropes after being caught by a Morrison uppercut. Again, like the first Tyson fight, Ruddock was controversially stopped on his feet in the 6th round.[citation needed]


After the loss to Morrison, Ruddock disappeared for 3 years until he returned once again in 1998. Ruddock was scheduled to challenge Vitali Klitschko for the WBO heavyweight title in April 2000, yet was forced to withdraw at late notice due to injury.[citation needed] After building up a winning streak against journeymen opponents, Ruddock won the Canadian heavyweight title for a second time with a tenth round win over Egerton Marcus in October 2001, then retired with a record of 38 wins (28 KOs), 5 losses and 1 draw.[citation needed]

On March 28, 2015 Ruddock returned to the ring with a fifth round knockout win over Raymond Olubowale.[7]


Ruddock was ranked 70th on Ring Magazine's list of "100 Greatest Punchers Of All-Time".[8]

Life after boxing

In the late 1990s Ruddock had filed for bankruptcy as a number of failed investments, including $1 million that he lost when his Fort Lauderdale nightclub "Razor's Palace" went under; had left him cash poor. A contract dispute ruined a close relationship with his brother and former manager, Delroy.[9]

In 2006 Ruddock invented a non-electrical garbage compacter called The Boxer which he hoped would become a success. Ruddock marketed the device he designed one day after becoming increasingly frustrated with the amount of waste his family was creating,[10] and sold it from his website Razorruddock.com. As of November 2013, the site is no longer online and the product is listed on Amazon as unavailable with no indication for future availability.[11]

Professional boxing record

Professional record summary
47 fights 40 wins 6 losses
By knockout 30 5
By decision 9 1
By disqualification 1 0
Draws 1
No. Result Record Opponent Type Round, time Date Location Notes
47 Loss 40–6–1 Canada Dillon Carman KO 3 (8), 2:05 Sep 11, 2015 Canada Ricoh Coliseum, Toronto, Ontario, Canada For Canada heavyweight title
46 Win 40–5–1 Canada Eric Barrak MD 6 May 22, 2015 Canada Colisée Isabelle-Brasseur, Saint-Jean-sur-Richelieu, Quebec, Canada
45 Win 39–5–1 Canada Raymond Olubowale TKO 5 (6), 1:00 Mar 28, 2015 Canada Hershey Centre, Mississauga, Ontario, Canada
44 Win 38–5–1 Canada Egerton Marcus TKO 10 (12), 2:48 Oct 12, 2001 United States Convention and Civic Center, Niagara Falls, New York, U.S. Won vacant Canada heavyweight title
43 Win 37–5–1 United States Harold Sconiers SD 10 Apr 27, 2001 United States Convention and Civic Center, Niagara Falls, New York, U.S.
42 Win 36–5–1 Cuba Jose Ribalta KO 1 (10), 1:40 Oct 8, 1999 United States Turning Stone Resort Casino, Verona, New York, U.S.
41 Win 35–5–1 Mexico Mike Sedillo TKO 8 (10), 1:19 Jul 20, 1999 Canada Casino Windsor, Windsor, Ontario, Canada
40 Win 34–5–1 United States Derek Amos TKO 1 (10) May 27, 1999 United States Mountaineer Casino Racetrack and Resort, Chester, West Virginia, U.S.
39 Win 33–5–1 United States Anthony Willis TKO 6 (10), 2:40 Feb 19, 1999 United States Turning Stone Resort Casino, Verona, New York, U.S.
38 Win 32–5–1 United States Tony LaRosa TKO 3 (10) Jan 21, 1999 United States Grand Casino Avoyelles, Marksville, Louisiana, U.S.
37 Win 31–5–1 Puerto Rico Rodolfo Marin TKO 8 (10) Aug 11, 1998 United States Miccosukee Resort & Gaming, Miami, Florida, U.S.
36 Win 30–5–1 United States Tony Bradham KO 2 (10), 2:31 Jun 26, 1998 United States DePaul Alumni Hall, Chicago, Illinois, U.S.
35 Win 29–5–1 United States Brian Yates TKO 4 (10) Apr 16, 1998 United States North Vernon, Indiana, U.S.
34 Loss 28–5–1 United States Tommy Morrison TKO 6 (12), 2:55 Jun 10, 1995 United States Municipal Auditorium, Kansas City, Missouri, U.S. For vacant IBC heavyweight title
33 Win 28–4–1 United States Anthony Wade UD 10 Jan 29, 1994 United States MGM Grand Garden Arena, Paradise, Nevada, U.S.
32 Loss 27–4–1 United Kingdom Lennox Lewis TKO 2 (12), 0:46 Oct 31, 1992 United Kingdom Earls Court Exhibition Centre, London, England For Commonwealth heavyweight title
31 Win 27–3–1 United States Phil Jackson KO 4 (12), 2:12 Jun 26, 1992 United States CSU Convocation Center, Cleveland, Ohio, U.S. Won vacant IBC heavyweight title
30 Win 26–3–1 United States Greg Page RTD 8 (10), 3:00 Feb 15, 1992 United States The Mirage, Paradise, Nevada, U.S.
29 Loss 25–3–1 United States Mike Tyson UD 12 Jun 28, 1991 United States The Mirage, Paradise, Nevada, U.S.
28 Loss 25–2–1 United States Mike Tyson TKO 7 (12), 2:22 Mar 18, 1991 United States The Mirage, Paradise, Nevada, U.S.
27 Win 25–1–1 United States Mike Rouse KO 1 (10), 2:37 Dec 8, 1990 United States Convention Hall, Atlantic City, New Jersey, U.S.
26 Win 24–1–1 United States Kimmuel Odum KO 3 (10), 2:58 Aug 18, 1990 United States Broadway by the Bay Theater, Atlantic City, New Jersey, U.S.
25 Win 23–1–1 United States Michael Dokes TKO 4 (12), 0:53 Apr 4, 1990 United States Madison Square Garden, New York City, New York, U.S. Won WBA Inter-Continental heavyweight title
24 Win 22–1–1 United States James Smith KO 7 (10), 2:18 Jul 2, 1989 United States Cumberland County Memorial Auditorium, Fayetteville, North Carolina, U.S.
23 Win 21–1–1 United States James Broad TKO 1 (10), 2:58 Dec 6, 1988 Canada Metro Centre, Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada
22 Win 20–1–1 United States Reggie Gross TKO 2 (10), 1:36 Jun 27, 1988 United States Convention Hall, Atlantic City, New Jersey, U.S.
21 Win 19–1–1 Canada Ken Lakusta KO 1 (12) May 28, 1988 Canada Saskatchewan Place, Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, Canada Won vacant Canada heavyweight title
20 Win 18–1–1 United States Larry Alexander KO 2 (10), 2:08 Apr 26, 1988 United States The Showplace, Camden, New Jersey, U.S.
19 Win 17–1–1 United States Eddie Richardson KO 4 (10), 1:42 Nov 24, 1987 Canada Forum, Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada
18 Win 16–1–1 United States Juan Quintana TKO 2 (10), 0:51 Aug 9, 1987 United States State Theatre, Easton, Pennsylvania, U.S.
17 Win 15–1–1 Cuba Carlos Hernandez DQ 7 (10), 0:27 Jun 15, 1987 United States Convention Hall, Atlantic City, New Jersey, U.S. Hernandez disqualified for attempting to punch the referee
16 Win 14–1–1 United States Robert Evans TKO 5 (10), 0:58 May 16, 1987 United States State Theatre, Easton, Pennsylvania, U.S.
15 Win 13–1–1 United States Mike Weaver SD 10 Aug 23, 1986 United States Cumberland County Memorial Auditorium, Fayetteville, North Carolina, U.S.
14 Win 12–1–1 United States Al Houck TKO 1 (8), 1:30 Jul 8, 1986 Canada Forum, Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada
13 Win 11–1–1 United Kingdom John Westgarth KO 7 (8) May 28, 1986 United Kingdom Alexandra Palace, London, England
12 Win 10–1–1 United States Carlton Jones KO 1 (6), 2:04 Feb 26, 1986 Canada St. Lawrence Market, Toronto, Ontario, Canada
11 Loss 9–1–1 United States David Jaco RTD 8 (10), 3:00 Apr 30, 1985 Canada Sportsplex, Dartmouth, Nova Scotia, Canada
10 Win 9–0–1 United States Oscar Holman UD 8 Oct 20, 1984 Canada Dartmouth, Nova Scotia, Canada
9 Win 8–0–1 United States Ricardo Peterson UD 8 Jul 31, 1984 Canada Sportsplex, Dartmouth, Nova Scotia, Canada
8 Win 7–0–1 Canada Cedric Parsons TKO 7 (8) Feb 28, 1984 Canada Sportsplex, Dartmouth, Nova Scotia, Canada
7 Win 6–0–1 Canada Conroy Nelson UD 10 Sep 25, 1983 Canada CNE Coliseum, Toronto, Ontario, Canada
6 Draw 5–0–1 United States Phil Brown SD 6 Apr 26, 1983 Canada Paul Sauvé Arena, Montreal, Quebec, Canada
5 Win 5–0 United States Bill Hollis UD 6 Apr 8, 1983 Canada St. Lawrence Market, Toronto, Ontario, Canada
4 Win 4–0 United States Al Williams KO 1 (6), 1:53 Aug 13, 1982 Canada Welland Arena, Welland, Ontario, Canada
3 Win 3–0 United States Arthur Hall MD 4 Jun 1, 1982 United States Tropicana, Atlantic City, New Jersey, U.S.
2 Win 2–0 United States Garland Tipton KO 2 (6) Apr 24, 1982 Canada Columbus Event Centre, Toronto, Ontario, Canada
1 Win 1–0 Canada Wes Rowe TKO 4 (6) Mar 20, 1982 Canada Columbus Event Centre, Toronto, Ontario, Canada Professional debut


  1. ^ Nack, William (1993-02-01). "The Great Brit Hope". Sports Illustrated. Time Warner. Retrieved 2007-03-22. 
  2. ^ Fernandez, Bernard (1991-01-27). "Rugged `Razor' Ruddock Aims For World Title". Seattle Times. The Seattle Times Company. Retrieved 2008-06-20. 
  3. ^ Starkman, Randy. 1990, August 17. Good foes hard to get for Razor, The Toronto Star, F5.
  4. ^ Starkman, Randy. 1990, October 31. Holyfield doesn't faze Razor: Toronto boxer unimpressed by third-round KO of Douglas, The Toronto Star, D8.
  5. ^ "Smash Dance". CNN. 1991-07-08. Retrieved 2010-05-01. 
  6. ^ J. Golden. "Lewis - Ruddock, Lennox's Big Gamble". Retrieved 2010-04-08. [permanent dead link]
  7. ^ "Razor Ruddock survives knockdown to win comeback at the age of 51", Boxing News, March 30, 2015. Retrieved March 30, 2015
  8. ^ "The 100 Greatest Punchers of All-Time!". boxrec.com. 
  9. ^ "For Razor Ruddock, boxing's wounds won't heal". LasVegasSun.com. 
  10. ^ "Gelf Magazine Razor Ruddock, Inventor". gelfmagazine.com. 
  11. ^ "Amazon.com: BOXER COMPACTOR: Appliances". amazon.com. 

External links

Sporting positions
Regional boxing titles
Title last held by
Willie de Wit
Canada heavyweight champion
May 28, 1988 – September 1989
Title next held by
Tony Morrison
Title last held by
Michael Dokes
WBA Inter-Continental heavyweight champion
April 4, 1990 – August 1990
Title next held by
Wladimir Klitschko
Title last held by
Trevor Berbick
Canada heavyweight champion
October 12, 2001 – 2004
Title next held by
Patrice L'Heureux
Minor world boxing titles
Title last held by
Phil Jackson
IBC heavyweight champion
June 26, 1992 – December 1994
Title next held by
Tim Puller