Nicknamed "The Real Deal," Evander Holyfield is the only four-time world heavyweight champion and held unified WBA, WBC and IBF titles from 1990 to 1992, the WBA and IBF titles from 1993 to 1994 and between 1996 and 1999, and the WBA title for a fourth time from 2000 to 2001.
He reigned as the undisputed champion at cruiserweight in the late 1980s before earning the same status at heavyweight in the early 1990s. He remains the only boxer in history to win the undisputed championship in two weight classes.
Having fathered eleven children it was inevitable that one of the Holyfield clan would make their way in to the sport and this weekend sees 21-year-old Evan Holyfield make his professional debut in Las Vegas. Holyfied is undaunted by the legacy created by his father. In fact, he believes it is his birth right to eclipse the legacy his father created in the sport.
“Life is always better when you have a dream you can strive and work towards every day. I'm eager to get started and excited to begin this next chapter.”
Evan announced he was turning pro after 80 amateur contests, Holyfield is a 6ft 1in super-welterweight described as a box-puncher with lightning fast speed and hard-hitting power.
Several top US promoters were out to sign him but, unsurprisingly, he signed for Main Events, who guided Evander to fame and fortune. They have been responsible for the success of a host of elite fighters including Pernell Whitaker, Lennox Lewis, Meldrick Taylor, Arturo Gatti and more recently Sergey "Krusher" Kovalev.
Evan will be trained and managed by Maurice ‘Termite’ Watkins, a hard-hitting world title contender from the 1970's in Houston - 800 miles from his Dad's home in Atlanta.
"I have been boxing (as an amateur) for 10 years and it is time to go to the next level," Holyfield said.
"All through high school, while my friends were going to football and basketball practice, I was going to the gym every day. I realise the time is now for that dedication to pay off."
It's certainly a rarity when a son wins a world title like his father with Leon Spinks’ offspring Cory being one of the few that springs to mind. Most attempts in boxing history have ended in failure. Most notably Joe Frazier's son Marvis who lost to both Larry Holmes and Mike Tyson in the 1980s.
Holyfield makes his debut on the undercard of this weekend’s super fight between Canelo Alvarez & Sergey Kovalev against Nick Winstead (0-1). Inevitably as soon as he throws his first punch critics and fans will make instant comparisons between father and son.