"Prince" Naseem Hamed ( born February 12, 1974 in Sheffield as Naseem Salom Ali Hamed ) is a former British professional boxer of Yemeni descent. He is a former European champion EBU Bantamweight International Champion of the WBC super bantamweight, and former world champion of the WBO, IBF, WBC and IBO featherweight.
He gained worldwide fame through his spectacular fighting style and his imaginative choreography of the entry into the ring. Due to its extraordinary reflexes and high speed he fought mostly without coverage, provoked his opponents by gestures and punched it almost " dance " from.
Between 1999 and 2006 he carried the honorary title of Member of the Order of the British Empire.
Hamed was already at a young age as Boxwunderkind. Already at the age of 12 he was one of the best amateur boxers in the UK and Europe, with 18 he signed his first professional contract already. Hamed's famous fighting style, in which the fighters hands, instead of using them to cover, let loose dangling beside the body ( " Hands -down style" ), was developed in Ingle 's famous gym in Wincobank in Sheffield. Also Naseem Hamed was the boxer Herol 'Bomber ' Graham, a boxer who was active in the 80s, heavily influenced.
Hamed's athletic rise was meteoric, the number of his fans ( and opponents ) grew rapidly.
In 1994, he struck the Italian bantamweight European champion Vincenzo Belcastro.
In 1995, he then won his first featherweight championship fight against the Welsh WBO title holder Steve Robinson ( with streaky record of 21-9-1 ) by knockout in the eighth round before his home crowd in Cardiff. Robinson was nowhere recognized in the other Boxverbänden as a real number 1, but was rated at least in the U.S. expert circles in the top 10 of the best featherweight.
His first title defense was the shortest world title fight that was ever held in Scotland, when he hit the unknown challenger Said Lawal in 45 second knockout. Hamed then defended his title against Puerto Rican Daniel Alicea. The fight was broadcast by Showtime in the United States. Hamed was first reflected in this fight in his career in the first round. To pause Hamed was instructed in the corner to doff his usual hands- down -style and conventional fighting. He won the fight in the second round by KO
He beat the former ( and future ) Mexican IBF title holder Manuel Medina in round 11 KO's, but got bad reviews from the press, mainly because of its lack of balance. The next opponent, IBF Champion Tom Johnson, was defeated in a unification fight in London. Johnson was out in the Ring Magazine before Hamed to 1, but in the betting underdog. The fight was stopped by the referee in the eighth round.
The first fight in the United States took place in 1997 against former WBC featherweight champion Kevin Kelley at Madison Square Garden instead. In this the first gong to very hard-fought battle, Hamed was beaten the same in the 1st round to the ground. His previous habit to box with open cover and avoid only because of the quick reflexes hit the opponent, Naseem Hamed seemed to be the undoing for the first time in his career. After he had repeated to the ground in the second round, Hamed struggled from the time with conventional cover what some observers saw as a turning point in his career. Could he dominate the opponent easily and ridicule by far superior speed, mobility and striking power, the quality of these skills decreased evidently. In the fight with Hamed Kelley was three times sent on the boards before he could defeat in the fourth round after the third precipitation by knockout Kelley on his part.
In 1998, he beat Wilfredo Vasquez KO, until shortly before the reigning WBA champion, who had to resign his title only from boxpolitischen reasons, and scored the former title holder of the WBC bantamweight Wayne McCullough. In 1999, he knocked out the unbeaten European champion ( and later IBF title holder ) Paul Ingle. Later in the same year he defeated Cesar Soto for the WBC title on points. In 2000, he beat the reigning champion of the IBF featherweight, Vuyani Bungu, KO and defeated Augie Sanchez, who had him on the ground.
Increasing criticism, defeat and preliminary End of career
To contend with casual and provocative nature Hamed enjoyed at the height of his career, an enormous media attention in the otherwise rather neglected featherweight. While he was hailed for his alleged " invincibility " of a large fan base, he was increasingly criticized by the press for his lack of technique and its poor coverage work and partly ridiculed. It was said, for example, he was doing in the ring everything wrong, except to lose. His fighting style trust too much on agility and reflexes, this would not eventually be enough against stronger and technically superior opponents.
The first defeat Hamed, the Marco Antonio Barrera inflicted on him in 2001 on points, gave his critics right. Already in previous fights Hamed had gone several times to the ground and had won concise point victories. Against the experienced Barrera, who had previously become WBO world champion in the light featherweight, Hamed was one after the other ausgekontert times, while his own attacks on the strong covering Barreras fizzled.
Hamed returned to the ring in 2002, but seemed untrained and could not build on his old qualities despite a victory. Since then, Hamed denied no longer, without officially end his career fights.
In May 2006 he was sentenced to 15 months in prison for negligent injury (car accident). On 4 September 2006, he was, however, released early from prison in Doncaster / South Yorkshire. As part of the sentencing him his order of knighthood Member of the Order of the British Empire has been revoked by the Queen in 2006, again, as he proved by his misconduct as unworthy to hold this honorary distinction on.
Balance sheet as an amateur: 67 fights, 62 wins, 17 by knockout, 5 losses, no draws
Balance sheet as a professional: 37 fights, 36 wins, including 31 by knockout, 1 loss, no draws.
- September 30, 1995: World Champion WBO featherweight (15 title defenses )
- February 8, 1997: World Champion IBF featherweight (2 title defenses )
- October 22, 1999: World Champion of the WBC Featherweight
- May 18, 2002: World Champion of the IBO Featherweight