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Below the belt: Ranking boxing’s 5 nastiest ever cheap shots

25 May | BY Betway | MIN READ TIME |
Below the belt: Ranking boxing’s 5 nastiest ever cheap shots

After Andre Dirrell's uncle sucker punched Jose Uzcategui, we relive the snidest strikes the sweet science has ever seen...

5. Anthony Joshua v Dillian Whyte (2016)

Anthony Joshua and those around him have worked hard to cultivate his clean-cut image over the course of his career.

Dillian Whyte was the first – and only – fighter to question the heavyweight champion’s character, and Joshua – whose incredible diet we recently revealed – was actually the instigator of this cheap shot.

He was riled up after being called fake by Whyte in the build-up to their fight, and threw an unnecessary hook after the first-round bell.

Whyte snapped.

The Jamaican-born heavyweight shoved the referee aside and launched at Joshua’s corner, arms windmilling at the back of his opponent’s head.

The ring quickly filled with members of both teams, and after things calmed down Joshua won by seventh-round knockout.

4. Floyd Mayweather v Zab Judah (2006)

Zab Judah is one of the few fighters to really trouble Floyd Mayweather – who is {ODDS:132156579:1/12} to beat Conor McGregor in the latest boxing odds – having matched his arch rival for speed in the first four rounds of their meeting.

He then caused Mayweather a problem of a different kind, with a well-placed uppercut to the groin.

Judah followed that low blow up with a blow to the back of the head, and as Mayweather hobbled around like a duck and then sunk to the ground, his uncle Roger entered the ring in a rage.

Roger was confronted by Judah’s father, Yoel, and a full-on melee started between both camps.

The Sheriff’s department then moved in, the ring was cleared, gloves were touched and the remaining two rounds were fought.

And Mayweather won. Obviously.

3. Riddick Bowe v Andrew Golota (1996)

From one low blow to several more. 

Andrew Golota took on former heavyweight champion Riddick Bowe, and the Polish underdog dominated.

Then, in the seventh round, he got himself disqualified by taking repeated shots at Bowe’s groin.

If the low blows were cheap, then what followed was an absolute bargain.

A riot started, as several of Bowe’s security team entered the ring and exchanged punches with Golota, before a member of Big Daddy’s entourage cracked the Pole over the head with a walkie-talkie from behind.

A rematch was agreed upon, which Golota lost by disqualification.

What for? Yep, you guessed it: repeated low blows.

2. Floyd Mayweather v Victor Ortiz (2011)

Protect yourself at all times.

It’s boxing’s No. 1 rule, and one that Victor Ortiz forgot in the fourth round of his welterweight unification fight with Mayweather.

Ortiz was behind on the scorecards when he landed a couple of decent shots, followed by a deliberate headbutt.

He immediately seemed repentant for the foul, touching gloves, hugging and even kissing Mayweather on the cheek.

But after one apology too many the pound-for-pound king caught his young opponent off-guard, cracking Ortiz with a one-two that put him out for the count.

Whether it was really a cheap shot is debateable, given that Mayweather didn’t technically break any rules.

His real crime was donning those black and orange trunks, though.


1. James Butler v Richard Grant (2001)

The gloves were off – quite literally – when James Butler landed this cheap shot on Richard Grant.

Butler was beaten on points in a close second meeting between the two fighters, and offered his hand to bump fists after his opponent’s arm was raised by the referee.

It was a con, though, as he cocked his fist back when Grant approached and landed a bare-knuckle hayemaker flush on the Jamaican’s jaw.

Butler was suspended and charged with aggravated assault for the punch.

He later went to jail for the murder of Sam Kellerman – the brother of American boxing analyst Max Kellerman.

Not a nice man.