Boxer Tommy Morrison dies — supposedly not from AIDS

The 6-foot-2, 235-pound Tommy Morrison was quite the physical specimen in his day. Credit: Getty Images
The 6-foot-2, 235-pound Tommy Morrison was quite the physical specimen in his day.
Credit: Getty Images

If you followed the saga of boxer Tommy Morrison, you might not be surprised to hear that the former heavyweight champion died Sunday night at just 44 years old.

Morrison beat the legendary George Foreman on June 7, 1993 to win the vacant WBO Heavyweight title. Foreman was well past his prime at that point, attempting one of his many comebacks, at age 44.

Morrison lost the title just four months later to Michael Bentt, who knocked him down three times — and out — in the first round.

But Morrison’s fame was also established in 1989 when he starred in “Rocky V” as the main character’s protege, Tommy “The Machine” Gunn (what a fortuitous last name!) The two eventually end up in a street brawl and (24-YEAR-OLD SPOILER ALERT!) Rocky beats the crap out of him. Please, enjoy:

Morrison’s life got a lot more complicated when he failed an HIV test in 1996 before fighting Arthur Weathers. He admitted to living a “reckless” lifestyle. The fight was canceled and Morrison never fought a noteworthy bout again. (He fought two more in 2007 and 2008, though both are questionable in legitimacy; one was in Mexico.)

But Morrison claimed, right up until his death, that the result was a false positive. He even took multiple HIV tests in 2007, all of which were negative. It’s a whole lot more complicated though, with reports the blood wasn’t actually his and that he failed not just one test in 1996, but multiple tests after that. The New York Times did an in-depth story on Morrison when he tried to make a comeback in 2007, and ESPN’s “Outside the Lines” did as well.

His wife said he had Guillain-Barre Syndrome, not AIDS. Like I said, complicated. All we know now is that Morrison was bed-ridden for months and died of major organ failure. An autopsy will reportedly be done.

Follow Metro New York Sports Editor Mark Osborne on Twitter @MetroNYSports. Rocky throws quite the uppercut, doesn’t he? He can knock someone out just by whiffing by a foot.


News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
Local

Brighton women indicted in scam involving care of…

A pair of Brighton women were due in Suffolk Superior Court Thursday morning after being indicted for allegedly stealing from an elderly woman whose trust…

Local

Florida man tied to Aaron Hernandez charged with…

Oscar Hernandez, a man tied to former New England Patriots Player Aaron Hernandez, was arrested Wednesday evening in Florida on federal charges out of Boston for obstruction of justice, witness…

International

Putin fields question from NSA fugitive Edward Snowden

Edward Snowden, the fugitive former U.S. spy agency contractor who leaked details of intelligence eavesdropping, asked Russian President Vladimir Putin a question on Thursday during…

Local

Crews battle fires in Dorchester, Cambridge overnight

Fires ripped through homes in Dorchester and Cambridge overnight causing injuries and displacing scores of residents.

Music

Both feet on the ground with Aimee Mann…

What began with a cool double-bill of Ted Leo opening for Aimee Mann morphed into a full-fledged collaborative project that they're calling The Both. “There…

The Word

Lawsuit accuses 'X-Men' director Bryan Singer of raping…

A new lawsuit accuses director Bryan Singer of sexual assault against a minor.

Movies

The Cannes Film Festival announces its 2014 lineup

The lineup of the 2014 Cannes Film Festival was announced this morning, promising the latest from a slew of usual (and some unusual) suspects.

Television

‘Survivor: Cagayan’ recap: Episode 8

Sure, it's called Survivor. But this season should really be called 'The Tony Show.'

NBA

Fantasy basketball: Finding next year's NBA studs

Before we put the 2013-14 fantasy basketball season to bed, it’s worth thinking about next year’s breakouts while they’re fresh in our mind.

MLB

MLB video highlights: Red Sox beat White Sox…

Red Sox walk 15 times in extra innings win

NBA

Kris Humphries on free agency, future with Celtics:…

Kris Humphries on free agency, future with Celtics: 'I hope to be back'

NBA

Celtics turn attention to NBA Draft, improve lottery…

Celtics turn attention to NBA Draft, improve lottery odds with loss

Parenting

Star-studded summer camps

Give your child the star treatment this summer with a celebrity-endorsed camp.

Parenting

How to parent without gender stereotypes in a…

Christia Spears Brown, Phd. author of "Parenting beyond Pink & Blue" gives advice on raising kids free of gender stereotypes.

Wellbeing

This Week in Health News: breastfed infants trying…

Are breastfed infants trying to prevent mom from having another baby? Theory: The act of breastfeeding not only brings mom and baby closer together –…

Wellbeing

This Week in Health: chocolate may prevent obesity…

Can chocolate prevent obesity and diabetes? Location of study: U.S. Study subjects: Mice Results: The positive health benefits of chocolate have been studied increasingly more…