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Lewis (2561/2) Never Bigger

June 20, 2003|Steve Springer and Paul Gutierrez | Times Staff Writers

Heavyweight champion Lennox Lewis stepped on the scales in front of Staples Center on Thursday afternoon, and a murmur went through the crowd.

And not because his chest looked sculpted.

Just the opposite.

Lewis weighed in at 256 1/2 pounds for Saturday's title defense against Vitali Klitschko, the heaviest Lewis has been in a 15-year career. That is 7 1/2 pounds heavier than he was a year ago when he knocked out Mike Tyson in Memphis, Tenn.

Lewis' heaviest weight previously was 253 for his first fight against Hasim Rahman in 2001, when Lewis was knocked out in the fifth round.

Klitschko weighed in at 248, a pound less than his previous high.


When Diego Corrales was told that one of the stops on his comeback trail would be at an outdoor tennis stadium at the Home Depot Center, the former International Boxing Federation junior-lightweight champion furrowed his brow.

"Where?" he wondered aloud. "What's that?"

It's where Corrales (36-1, 30 knockouts) will fight Damian Fuller (21-3, 10 KO's) tonight in a scheduled 10-round lightweight bout as the main event of ESPN's "Friday Night Fights" series.

Corrales, 26, got acclimated with the Carson facility Thursday morning, though.

"It's a beautiful place," he said. "Really nice."

Definitely more aesthetically pleasing than the Tracy prison, where Corrales spent more than a year after being convicted of felony spousal abuse against his ex-wife.

"This is what I've been waiting for, to get back to my shows," Corrales said.

Corrales, of Sacramento, won the IBF 130-pound title on Oct. 23, 1999, with a seventh-round technical knockout of Roberto Garcia and successfully defended his belt three times.

But he was beaten soundly by Floyd Mayweather Jr. on Jan. 20, 2001, getting knocked down five times before losing on a 10th-round TKO.

Tracy was next for Corrales, who, since his release, has a new manager (James Prince), trainer (Kenny Adams) and wife (Michelle). He also has a spotless record.

Corrales had a fifth-round TKO of Michael Davis on Jan. 25, knocked out Roque Cassiani in the first round Feb. 22 and stopped Felix St. Kitts in the third round April 24.

Also on the six-bout card: Unbeaten welterweight Ishe Smith (11-0, six KO's) of Las Vegas will meet Sal Lopez (18-4-2, 10 KO's) of Puerto Rico in a 10-rounder; and Zahami Gracia (4-0, four KO's) of Westminster will fight Danny Laborin (0-2) of San Jose in a four-round welterweight bout.

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