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Wednesday, November 19, 2003
Leonard marvelous on this night
By Larry Schwartz
Special to

April 6, 1987

Not having fought in almost three years, Sugar Ray Leonard comes out of retirement to challenge Marvelous Marvin Hagler for his WBC middleweight title in Las Vegas. A 3-1 underdog, the 30-year-old Leonard defies the odds, showing he's more marvelous than Hagler.

For most of the 12-round fight, he circles and counters, confusing and confounding Hagler, the aggressor. While the champ rallies in the last few rounds, it's not enough to overcome Leonard's big early lead and Sugar Ray wins the fight on a split decision. It's Hagler's first loss in 11 years and he takes exception with the decision.

"I can't believe it, man," Hagler says. "They stole my title. I feel in my heart I'm still the champion. I really hate the fact they took it away and gave it to Sugar Ray Leonard, of all people."

After raising his record to 34-1, Leonard says, "It was a good fight, a tough fight, but the best man won."

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