Boxing has been a very lucrative game, especially in the West, and the sport has helped several champion boxers accumulate millions of dollars. Unfortunately, several boxers, couldn't manage their wealth and eventually went broke.
Some lost their wealth to gambling while some to insensitive girlfriends, some to lavish lifestyles, and some to gold digging.
Here are few champion pugilists who went broke:
Joe Louis was a heavyweight champion between 1937 and 1949. During his playing career he earned $4.6 million. An American hero for his service during World War II, he was owed $ 100,000 in taxes.
He was a WBC Middleweight, IBF Super Middleweight and WBA Light Heavyweight champion. During his playing career he amassed around $5 million. He was homeless in 2010 and was surviving off meals provided by friends.
He is the youngest world champion in boxing history. When he was just 17-years-old he won a split decision over 30-year-old Antonio Cervantes for the WBA light welterweight championship. Sadly, today he is confined to a wheelchair and relies on government assistance to survive. His father mismanaged most of the money his son earned. Benitez had earned more than $3 million during his playing years.
During his career, Thomas "The Hitman" Hearns earned $40 million and won eight world titles in six different divisions. Unfortunately in 2010, "The Hitman" was forced to auction many of his possessions to pay tax debts of $250,000.
Dariusz Michalczewski earned around 30 million euros in his career. A former WBA, WBO and IBF light heavyweight champion and WBO cruiserweight champion, this Polish-German boxer's two divorces cost him more than 15 million euros.
He is former undisputed heavyweight champion and earned $50 million during his playing career. But his wealth was mismanaged by his advisors. He was reportedly seen trying to sell his own autographed memorabilia at a flea market in New Jersey.
Throughout his playing years this former undisputed cruiserweight and heavyweight champion earned $250 million. The only four-time world heavyweight champion owes thousands of dollars in child support. His suburban Atlanta estate was reportedly auctioned off on July 1, 2008.
Mike Tyson earned more than $350 million during his fighting years. This former undisputed heavyweight champion holds the record as the youngest boxer to win the WBC, WBA and IBF heavyweight titles.
He retired from professional boxing in 2006 and had declared himself bankrupt in 2003. As per Tyson, he claimed his promoter Don King robbed him. In 2003 he sued the promoter, but decided to settle out of court for $14 million. His current net worth is estimated at $1 million.