The results of the voting for the World Boxing Council's 1996 
awards are as follows:

BOXER OF THE YEAR:  Ricardo Lopez, Mexico.

For only the seventh time in the WBC's thirty-four year 
history, there was a unanimous vote for Boxer of the Year.  
The other unanimous choices were Muhammad Ali, Mike Tyson, 
Julio Cesar Chavez, Roberto Duran, Sugar Ray Leonard, and 
Larry Holmes. 

Lopez defended his title four times in 1996, and knocked out 
all four opponents.  He now has nineteen championship fights, 
with eighteen successful title defenses, a new record for 
the smaller weight divisions.  He has held the championship 
for six years and three months.

He also moved into sixth place on the all-time list of the 
longest time without a defeat - twelve years.  The leaders 
are Julio Cesar Chavez, Jack McAuliffe, Carlos Monzon, Joe 
Louis, and Larry Holmes.

Honorable Mention:  Oscar De La Hoya, USA.

De La Hoya won the super lightweight world title by defeating 
champion Chavez on June 7.

CHAMPION REVELATION OF THE YEAR:  Luisito Espinoza, Philippines.

Espinoza successfully defended the featherweight world title 
three times.  His mandatory defense in Manila reportedly drew 
over 300,000 fans.

Honorable Mention:  Saman Sorjaturong, Thailand.

Saman made five successful defenses of the light flyweight world 
title in 1996.

FIGHT OF THE YEAR:  Mike Tyson, USA, vs Evander Holyfield, USA.

The WBC world title was vacant.  Tyson fought as a WBC Lifetime 
Honorary Champion.


Oscar De La Hoya, USA, vs Julio Cesar Chavez, Mexico.

Honorable Mention:  Luisito Espinoza, Philippines, vs Alejandro 
Gonzalez, Mexico.


Ramos, lightweight world champion in 1969, 1970, and 1972, 
untiringly visits schools in an exemplary campaign against 
drug abuse.

Upcoming Fights

January 18  Las Vegas   
Super Lightweight World Championship
Champion Oscar De La Hoya (22-0, 20 kos) vs 
Miguel Angel Gonzalez (41-0, 31 kos)

January 24  Atlantic City 
Welterweight World Championship
Champion Pernell Whitaker (39-1-1, 16 kos) vs 
Diobelys Hurtado (20-0, 16 kos)

February 7  Las Vegas   
Vacant Heavyweight World Championship
Lennox Lewis (29-1, 24 kos) 
vs Oliver McCall (27-6, 19 kos)

March 1  Paris  (New date for mandatory title defense)
Lightweight World Championship
Champion Jean Baptiste Mendy (49-5-2, 30 kos) vs 
Steve Johnston (19-0, 13 kos)
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