The other day marked 10 years since James Toney tried MMA and was easily choked out by Randy Couture, who would never win another fight again. We’re here to relive Toney’s days as one of the best boxers in the world.
On July 29th, 1994 at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas, Toney took on “Prince” Charles Williams for James’ IBF super middleweight title. Williams was a former champion at light heavyweight and decided to move down from 175 lbs to 168, where he’d be up against a defensive master who packed a wallop.
This was a pretty entertaining bout, with Toney losing a point for hitting Williams after the bell in the first round. Williams’ physicality and workrate made for a lot of action throughout the contest, and he just about closed Toney’s left eye shut, but Toney was ultimately ahead on the scorecards entering the final round. In the final minute, Williams threw a jab that missed and he had his left arm down, providing the opportunity for Toney to counter with a vicious right hand that had Williams doing the stanky leg. Williams didn’t beat the count and that was that.
Watch the video at the top of the page.
Toney (77-10-3-2 NCs, 47 KOs) lost to Roy Jones Jr in the very next fight, ending his undefeated record. He’d eventually go all the way up to heavyweight and indeed at cruiserweight he won the IBF title in a thriller against Vassily Jirov. “Lights Out” retired in 2017, way past his best but with the distinction of never being KO’d. Williams (37-7-3, 28 KOs) never had another relevant fight and retired in 1996.