Former undisputed world heavyweight champion Lennox Lewis has told Russian promoters he could make a sensational return to the ring to fight one of the Klitschko brothers.
The Daily Mail reports that the 48-year-old boxer, who retired ten years ago, was offered $50 million (£31.3m) in Moscow at the weekend while at the venue of Wladimir Klitschko’s defence of his WBA, IBF and WBO world heavyweight titles against Alexander Povetkin.
He says he would return to the ring for, $100m (£62.6m) the biggest prize money in boxing history.
“That is my price tag and it is under discussion,” Lewis insists while the promoters were considering doubling their bid. I have told them I can be ready in six months and I am in provisional training.
Lewis, who still is the most recent undisputed heavyweight champion said he was recently offered half the amount to return to boxing.
“I said at the time that it will take $50 million to get me out of my pyjamas but now I have to consider the value of my legacy of having retired as undisputed champion. That will cost them $100 million.”
The Englishman believes that in a fight next spring he can surpass George Foreman, who regained the title at the age of 48, as the oldest world heavyweight champion of all time.
Lewis, in 2003, won the eldest of the Klitschko brothers, Vitali, 42, on cuts in Los Angeles and it is believed the Russians are projecting a rematch of the fabled bout between the duos, but Lewis will prefer to fight Wladimir, 37.
“I beat Vitali so I would like to fight the other brother but we’ll see how it works out. I want to bring back the sweet Science to heavyweight boxing.”
The physical demand is obviously a bone of contention for Lewis, who reports himself to be “already well under 300lbn”. It would be difficult to drill out the 245lb he weighed in his prime, he says:
“I will go back to the mountains and into isolation. With the Russians involved I am thinking of training in Siberia.”
After watching the younger Klitschko’s somewhat criticized victory over Povetkin he added:
“In a way this fight confirmed my disappointment with the state of heavyweight boxing right now. The best I could find to challenge Wladimir was a kid who is not fully developed either physically or in terms of experience.
“People paid a lot of money in expectation of a great fight but Povetkin was not properly prepared for the most important fight of his career.”
During the October 5 battle, which marked the Russian’s 15th defences in his second spell as champion, Klitschko put his challenger down on three occasions in the seventh round and was ducked a point in the eleventh round for apparently pushing Povetkin to the canvas for the second time.
“Wladimir should have gone for the knockout after putting him down four times but I think he missed having (the late) Manny Steward in his corner. Manny would have told him what he told me when I fought Vitali- to go and finish him,” he joked.
“I suspect Wladimir had a problem his right hand because as the fight went on he didn’t use it that often. But having said that he showed great movement, was very light on his feet and was never in danger of losing.”
Lewis is definitely sure of beaten the younger generation boxers like Tyson Fury and David Haye.
Meanwhile Lewis took to Twitter on Thursday to dismiss reports that he is preparing to make a comeback to fight Wladimir Klitschko if he is paid $100m (£62.6m).
” A hypothetical answer to a hypothetical question does NOT equal reality #NoComeback”, Lewis wrote on his Twitter feed.
“I’m not stepping back in the ring but I AM looking for the next crop of new talent.”
He is in London to launch his new training academy for potential world heavyweight champions and running in Hyde Park each morning.