Evander Holyfield brutally floored by Vitor Belfort in early comeback loss

Evander Holyfield was knocked down and stopped inside the first round of his comeback fight against Vitor Belfort on Saturday night.

Holyfield climbed through the ropes for the first time in a decade to replace Covid-stricken Oscar De La Hoya on the Florida card.

But questions will rightly be asked about how, at 58 years of age, the former undisputed cruiserweight champion was allowed to lace up the gloves professionally once more.

Because inside the opening round of his clash with Belfort he found himself on the canvas twice, succumbing to the 44-year-old's relentless waves of pressure before the referee saved him from any further punishment.

Unsurprisingly, Holyfield looked a shadow of his former self 13 years on from his last world-title contest.

The boxing legend was beaten comprehensively by Belfort, a former MMA champion whose only previous professional boxing outing came 15 years ago.

However, after the defeat he protested the referee's decision to stop the fight.

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“I think it was a bad call," Holyfield said.

“I don’t think the referee should have stopped the fight that quick.”

Belfort, meanwhile, is desperate to lock horns with YouTuber turned boxer Jake Paul next and wasted no time in calling him out after the victory.

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"Hey, Jake Paul, stop running from me, man. I'm going to teach you a lesson," he said.

"You can be my kid, you're going to meet daddy over here at Triller. Stop running."

Elsewhere on the card, another former undisputed cruiserweight champion, David Haye, picked up a unanimous points win over Joe Fournier.

  • Fans fear for Evander Holyfield after "depressing" training video emerges before return

Haye followed up the triumph by revealing his intention to make a genuine boxing comeback, throwing down the gauntlet to WBC heavyweight champion Tyson Fury.

Anderson Silva also secured a big knockout victory in his showdown with fellow UFC superstar Tito Ortiz.

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