Evander Holyfield is an American former professional boxer. He competed from 1984 to 2011. He was the first undisputed champion at cruiserweight in the 1980s and heavyweight in the 1990s. He remains the only boxer in history to win undisputed champion in two weight classes. During his career, he made more than $560 million. But what is Evander Holyfield net worth in 2020?
After a long and successful boxing career, Holyfield did not manage to continue his success. At one point, his net worth was more than $200 million. He lived in a 54,000 square feet on 234 acres house worth more than $1 million. Now, his net worth is little over $500,000. He declared bankruptcy in 2008. How he got there?
Boxing Career and Records
Holyfield started his career as a light heavyweight. He represented the United States at the 1984 Olympics and won a bronze medal. He turned professional at the age of 21, moving up to cruiserweight in 1985 and winning his first world championship the following year.
He defeated Dwight Muhamad Qawi for the WBA title. The Ring described the fight as “the best cruiserweight bout of the 1980s”. He defeated Qawi by a narrow 15 round split decision. In 1987, he defended his title against former Olympic teammate Henry Tillman. He won in the seventh round with a knockout. He then unified his WBA belt with the IBF belt by defeating Ricky Parkey.
In 1988, he became the first universally recognized World Cruiserweight Champion. He did it after defeating the Lineal and WBC Champion Carlos De Leon. After that, he moved up in weight to pursue the World Heavyweight Championship held by Mike Tyson.
He won fights against James Quick Tillis, Pinklon Thomas, Michael Dokes, Adilson Rodrigues, and Alex Stewart. In 1990, promoters promised him a fight with Tyson. But that was the year an unknown Buster Douglas defeated Mike Tyson in 20 rounds. Instead of fighting Tyson, Holyfield went on to fight Douglas.
Buster had to defend his title on October 15, 1990, but he was out of shape. Evander knocked him out to become the heavyweight champion. Holyfield signed a deal to defend his crown against Mike Tyson in 1991. Mike delayed the fight claiming he got injured and was then convicted for rape. He spent six years in prison. Evander and Mike had their first fight in 1996. Holyfield won by a TKO in the 11th round. Their rematch in 1997 is the famous Bite Fight.
By the time he finished his boxing career, Holyfield held a record of 44 wins, 10 loses, 2 draws, and 1 no contest. He won 29 fights by a knockout. Evander was the first undisputed world Cruiserweight champion. He was also the first 4-time Heavyweight champion.
In 2017, Holyfield entered the International Boxing Hall of Fame. In 1996, he carried the Olympic torch on its way to his hometown o Atlanta.
Evander Holyfield Net Worth in 2020
In 2020, despite being one of the best boxers in history, his net worth is roughly $500,000. That is far less than his accomplishments would suggest. For his rematch in 1997 with Tyson, he earned $30 million. So how he lost all the money? What happened?
His Name is Worth More
Boxing was not the only source of income for Holyfield. By 1992, he was a household name. He endorsed many products on television. For example, he endorsed Coca-Cola and Diet Coke. He released a video game for the Sega Genesis and Sega Game Gear, named Evander Holyfield’s Real Deal Boxing.
In 2007, he released the Real Deal Grill cooking appliance via TV infomercials. Cirtran Corp manufactured the cooking appliance. In 2008, he was among the celebrities doing ads for the restaurant chain Zaxby’s.
Some other television appearances include:
- 1990 Christmas Special for the Fresh Prince of Bel-Air
- Minor Roles in Summer of Sam, Blood Salvage, and Necessary Roughness
- Guest Appearance on Nickelodeon GUTS in 1994
- Dancing with the stars in 2005, finishing in fifth place with Edyta Sliwinska
- Appearance on the original BBC Strictly Come Dancing “Champion of Champions”
- Participated in a boxing match at World Wrestling Entertainment’s Saturday Night’s Main Event in 2007
- Appeared as himself in the 2011 remake of Arthur
- He entered the 13th series of Celebrity Big Brother in 2014
- In 2016, he entered the Argentine dancing reality show Bailando 2016
How he Lost His Money
For a guy who earned $34 million for a single fight (the famous bite match in 1997 vs Tyson), you have to be nuts to lose your money. He earned more than $560 million during his long boxing carrier. He earned some money from advertising and television as well.
But, athletes often indulge when they are at the top of their game. They fail to save money for rainy days and often end up with massive debt. The same thing happened to Evander Holyfield. He was under 40 years old when he was still generating millions.
But paying for the luxurious mansion and child support takes its toll. According to the New York Times, he paid more than $16,000 for Christmas lights only. The electricity bills were as high as possible.
He was also another victim of shady promoters and poor business deals. Don King was his promoter after his knockout of Mike Tyson in 1996. He was his client for five to six years. Tyson once said, “Don King would kill his own mother for a dollar”.
The biggest problem with Holyfield was his pricey divorces and child support. He had three pricey divorces. He pays child support for 12 kids, and that would drain any wallet.
Evander had to sell his 234-acre mansion in June 2012 for $7.5 million. And he didn’t see any of that money. His home got foreclosed. He owed more than $14 million. He also owed more than $200,000 worth of back taxes.
He did not petition for bankruptcy, either Chapter 7 or Chapter 13. What he did is try to sell his belongings. He put his 1984 Olympic Bronze medal up for auction. He also put the trunks he wore for the historic 1991 battle with George Foreman. He also sold 20 pairs of fight gloves, championship rings, belts, and 25 match robes.