Wilfred Benitez's bout-by-bout career pro boxing record.
He turned pro at the young age of 15 and by the age of 17, Puerto Rican "Boy Wonder" Wilfred Benitez became the youngest fighter in boxing history to win a world title. The date was March 6, 1976 when Benitez made boxing history when he won the WBA Jr. Welterweight title over Antonio "Kid Pambele" Cervantes by a split decision. Benitez's triumph over Cervantes made him a world champion at the age of 17 years, 5 months and 23 days. Now, at the age of 37 years, 9 months, he is the youngest person elected to the Boxing Hall of Fame. That honor was formerly held by Michael Spinks.
Benitez showed his defensive wizardry along with sneaky punching power to successfully defend his WBA title three more times.
Becoming known in the boxing world as "The Bible of Boxing" and "The Radar", Benitez moved up in weight and won his second title, the WBC Welterweight Championship on January 14, 1979 from Carlos Palomino. After one successful defense over Harold Weston, Benitez went 15 rounds with the legendary Sugar Ray Leonard in a grueling battle among the best two young fighters in the world. The affair was a fistic duel as the young Welterweights match speed and artistry. Blow to blow, head to head these two warriors withstood each others punishment until the 15th and final round. Leonard threw quick combinations at the start of the round and dropped Benitez. The referee moved in and stopped the contest.
Despite the loss, Benitez was not discouraged and moved up in weight again and captured his third title by stopping Maurice Hope on May 23, 1981 with a one-punch knock out. At the time he was only the seventh man in boxing history to win 3 titles in three different weight classes.
As the WBC Junior Middleweight Champion, Wilfred Benitez defended his belt twice, including a decision victory over Roberto "Manos de Piedras" Duran on January 30, 1982.
On December 3, 1982, Thomas "The Hitman" Hearns won a close 15 round decision over Benitez and ended the championship reign of Wilfred Benitez.
Benitez retired from Boxing in 1990, but had one more glorious moment in 1996 when he was inducted into the International Boxing Hall of Fame. Benitez was only the 6th boxer to win enshrinement in their first year of eligibility.
At the ceremony, Benitez could barely contain himself when his time came. With his mother at his side, Benitez sprang to his feet, both arms outstretched and clenched fists. Benitez said "This is the best and the most prestigious honor of my career."
Puerto Rico's Governor Pedro Rosello declared Benitez a National hero and called the induction of Benitez "Something that while pleasing to all of us, most Puerto Ricans saw it coming a long time ago."
Benitez fought from 1973-1990 and held titles as a junior welterweight, welterweight and super welterweight. He finished his boxing career with 53-8-1 record (with 31 KOs).
Clemente | Lefty Gomez | Martin
Dihigo | Wilfred
Benitez | Sammy Sosa
Chi-Chi Rodriguez | Orlando Cepeda | Eusebio Pedroza | Anthony Muñoz | Adrian Fernandez
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