Thursday, December 24, 2015

19-year-old boxer dies after collapsing in first pro fight (VIDEO)

A 19-year-old boxer, brimming with every young fighter's dream of being the next Muhammad Ali, died after suffering injuries in his first professional fight.

Ohio Athletic Commission executive director Bernie Profato said Hamzah Aljahmi of Dearborn, Michigan died Tuesday at a Youngstown hospital after undergoing brain surgery following Saturday's fight.

Profato said Aljahmi collapsed at the end of the fourth and final round in a flyweight bout against Anthony Taylor — a boxer from Ohio who was also making his pro debut.

Profato says Aljahmi was knocked down three times in the first round but rallied to win the second and third rounds based on the judges' scorecards.

Video from the 114-pound match shows the competitors battling back and forth, failing to land punches before Aljahmi punched Taylor with a sweeping hook in the fourth round. Taylor responded by backing Aljahmi into the ropes and struck his competitor with a flurry of blows right before the final bell. Aljahmi staggered and fell, trying unsuccessfully to stand in the center of the ring.

Taylor raised his arms in celebration as officials checked Aljahmi.

"He dead. He don't want to get back up," someone in the crowd reportedly said as Aljahmi slipped into a coma.

A relative of Aljahmi, Ibrahim Aljahim, said his cousin fell in love with boxing as a child and previously fought at the 2013 National Golden Gloves tournament in the 108-pound weight class.

"He was one of the most talented and respected people in the community,"Aljahim told the Detroit Free Press. "He was very generous, loved everyone. He cared about the whole family ... His goal in life was to be the future Muhammad Ali. He loved boxing. From the age of 10, he was into boxing, he watched boxing. That was his main sport."

The boxer identified himself as a good Muslim of Yemeni descent on his Instagram account, posting images of himself in boxing gear, wearing designer clothes, playing the piano and spending time with relatives.

"I'm a boxer gonna be the best in my division," he wrote.

Sadly, boxing loses another young warrior. R.I.P.

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