Jean Pascal is on the home stretch of an exciting career that has won him fans all over the world.
He faces the end of the road if he loses to WBA World Light-Heavyweight Champion Dmitry Bivol on Saturday night.
The former WBC and lineal Light-Heavyweight ruler insists he can use his experience to cause a huge upset in the Atlantic City showdown, being shown live on BoxNation.
The Canadian is up against it, but he can look up to boxing heroes of years gone by who have turned it on when perhaps least expected.
Here Steve Lillis looks at five other stars who managed to roll back the years. There have been shocks, boxers defying age and while some were not unexpected, the performances reminded fans of their greatest nights.
[Image credit: Ken Regan]
‘The Greatest’ turned back the clock in epic style when he faced supposed human monster George Foreman in the historic ‘Rumble in the Jungle’ in Zaire in 1974.
Few expected Ali to win, especially after Foreman had ruined Joe Frazier in two rounds lifting his rival off his feet. Ali soaked up everything adopting his famous ‘rope a dope’ tactic and it paid off winning by KO in eight.
SUGAR RAY LEONARD
[Image credit: CBS Sports]
If Pascal wanted to look at a boxer who revisited his greatest years, Sugar Ray Leonard’s epic victory over Marvin Hagler in April 1997 is a shining example.
Hagler had been unbeaten for 11 years and Leonard had been out of action for three years. He also had eye and cocaine issues. Leonard deployed rapid fire combinations and, although controversial, took the decision as rediscovered some of his finest form.
JUAN MANUEL MARQUEZ
[Image credit: USA Today Sports]
The Mexican great was in vintage form in his fourth fight against Manny Pacquiao. He gave a performance that reminded the world why he is a modern great and perhaps doesn’t get the recognition deserved. He had controversially lost to Pacman 11 months earlier and was the underdog.
He ended a fight of the highest quality by knocking the Filipino great out towards the end of round six, rendering him unconscious for two minutes. Pacquiao won two of the meetings after first fight ended in a draw, but Marquez’s win was the sweetest. It was the 2012 Fight of the Year. Many believe Marquez deserved the nod in the other three meetings.
[Image credit: Pro Boxing Fans]
The ring relic proved that age was just a number when aged 48 years, and 53 days, he won the IBF World Light-Heavyweight Title, defeating Tavoris Cloud to become the oldest World Champion in boxing history in March 2013
Cloud was no great, but Hopkins was ancient and had lost his previous fight against Chad Dawson. The record he broke was the one he actually owned for defeating Pascal aged 46.
SUGAR RAY ROBINSON
[Image credit: boxing.com]
Britain's Randy Turpin showed that Sugar Ray Robinson wasn’t invincible by stunning him in a London upset way back in 1951.
In a New York rematch 64 days later the American showed what great champions can do. Robinson was in trouble again, but showed just why his moniker is used by so many, hammering Turpin in the tenth round before Ruby Goldstein stopped the contest.