It was a sad, sorry day for Lucas ‘Big Daddy’ Browne but the 42 year old has vowed to fight again despite calls for him to hang up the gloves.
One of Australia’s greatest-ever heavyweights, and the first to ever hold a world championship belt, Browne looked a shadow of his former self as he was battered in just a couple of minutes by Paul Gallen.
Rocked by an early Gallen right hand above the year, his balance was gone. So too was the once-formidable chin that allowed him to recover from a knockdown to win his world-title bout with Ruslan Chagaev in 2016.
This time, there would be no miraculous comeback. He got up once, but swarmed by the smaller man, he crashed to the canvas again – and was lucky to be spared further punishment by staying down.
Former world champion Barry Michael declared on Main Event: “His resilience is gone. When a fighter’s shot, a fighter’s shot. Lucas Browne should never consider venturing into a ring again.”
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But the fighter himself later today media he’s not done in the ring.
“Definitely not my last fight,” he said.
“It’s been a year and a half since my last fight so I want to try and stay as active as I can.
“I want to have another fight in the next couple of months.”
Browne, once a fearsome competitor, has never looked the same since his 2018 defeat to Dillian Whyte. In that bout, where victory would have handed him a shot at undefeated WBO Heavyweight champion Joseph Parker, Browne was monstered – knocked out cold in the sixth round.
Doctors rushed into the ring to administer oxygen as the Australian giant lay prone, more like a felled tree than a fearsome warrior. He was sent to hospital.
Main Event host Warren Smith said: “As it turns out, maybe that fight three years ago in London against Dillian Whyte where he was absolutely manhandled; devastating the way he was knockout by Dillian Whyte … that took a lot obviously out of Lucas Browne, because he has not been the same fighter ever since.”
After that first defeat, Browne rebounded by coming home to face a couple of outmatched rivals in Julius Long and Junior Pati.
But when he tried to return to the world stage, he was a far sight from the boxer who stunned the world to become Australia’s first heavweight world champion.
He beat Polish journeyman Kamil Sokolowski in a highly controversial decision victory, despite a second-round knockdown and fading horribly in the final two rounds.
But he was smashed Brit David Allen shortly afterwards. Victory over John Hopoate only masked his decline. Now, finally, he might hang up his gloves.
There appears little he has to offer promoters except memories of a world title that he held so briefly before being stripped for doping.
He gamely showed up to face the media after his loss, and vowed to fight on. He shouldn’t.