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Wilfred Benitez

Titles: Junior welterweight champion 1976-1977, welterweight champion 
        1979, WBC junior middleweight champion 1981-1982.

Record: 53-8-1 (31 K.O's)
Born: September 12, 1958 in Bronx, New York (USA)
Years active: 1973-1990
Nickname: None

Perhaps no champion with the exception of Pernell Whitaker or Willie Pep 
have ever possessed the reflexes and natural defensive skills of this Puerto 
Rican prodigy. It is mind boggling to think just how good Benitez could have
benn if he would have trained for fights instead of enjoying the party
lifestyle. It seems almost unbelievable but he probably never reached his 
full potential. A brilliant counterpuncher and defensive fighter, the 5'10" 
Benitez often spoke of his "radar" which allowed him to avoid punches by
millimeters much less inches. In 1973 he turned pro at the age of 15 in 
Puerto Rico. In 1976 Benitez made history by becoming the youngest fighter
to ever win a world title. He was 17 when he dethroned legendary jr. 
welterweight Antonio Cervantes in a 15 round decision victory. He made 3 
successful defenses of the title before moving up in weight and beating 
Carlos Palomino in San Juan. He lacked discipline and almost never trained, 
but it still took the talents of Sugar Ray Leonard to stop his unbeaten 
run at 40 fights. In 1981 he again rose in weight and destroyed super 
welterweight champ Maurice Hope with one single right hand. Fighting during 
the golden age of the welterweight and Junior middleweight divisions, 
Benitez lost close decisions to Sugar Ray Leonard and Thomas Hearns while 
pulling of perhaps the finest fight of his career, in frustrating Roberto 
Duran for 15 rounds and winning a easy decision over him. He tried to 
campaign at the middleweight level but faded badly after losing to Mustafa 
Hamsho in 1983, and a knockout loss to Davey Moore. Although he engaged 
in several comebacks his skills had left him and made many wonder what had 
happend to his brilliance in such a short period of time. 

Wilfred Benitez
Career record: 53 W, 8 L, 1 D (31 K.O's)


22 Nov    Hiram Santiago      Puerto Rico         KO 1
30 Nov    Jesse Torres        St. Martin          KO 2


7 Jan     Hector Amadis       Puerto Rico         KO 4
26 Jan    Joe "Hawk"  York    St. Martin          KO 2
18 Feb    Roberto Flanders    Puerto Rico         KO 4
1 Apr     Victor Mangual      Puerto Rico         W 8
30 Apr    Juan Disla          Puerto Rico         KO 3
11 May    "Easy Boy" Lake"    St. Martin          KO 1
21 Jun    Ives St. Jean       St. Martin          KO 1
26 Jun    Carlos Crispin      St. Martin          KO 3
31 Aug    "Easy Boy" Lake"    St. Martin          KO 5
16 Sep    Al Hughes           NY                  KO 6
25 Oct    Terry Summerhayes   NY                  KO 6
2 Dec     Lawrence Hafey      NY                  W 8


4 Jan     Francisco Rodriguez Puerto Rico         KO 7
8 Feb     Santiago Rosa       Puerto Rico         KO 4
31 Mar    Wilbur Seales       Puerto Rico         KO 4
5 May     Santos Solis        Puerto Rico         W 10
9 Jun     Angel  Garcia       Puerto Rico         W 10
28 Jun    Joe Henry           Puerto Rico         KO 8
1 Aug     Eyue Jeudy          St. Martin          KO 4
19 Aug    Young Woodall       St. Martin          KO 4
1 Sep     Marcelino Alicia    Puerto Rico         KO 2
20 Oct    Omar Piton          NY                  KO 6
13 Dec    Chris Fernandez     Puerto Rico         W 10


6 Mar     Antonio Cervantes   Puerto Rico         W 15
          (Won World & WBA Jr. Welterweight Title)
31 May    Emiliano Villa      Puerto Rico         W 15
          (Retained World & WBA Jr. Welterweight Title)
16 Oct    Tony Petronelli     Puerto Rico         KO 3
          (Retained World & WBA Jr. Welterweight Title)


2 Feb     Harold Weston        NY                  D 10
6 Mar     Mel Dennis           OH                  W 8
2 Jun     Roberto Gonzalez     St. Thomas          KO 1
1 Jul     Easy Boy Lake        St. Thomas          KO 1
3 Aug     Jose Guerrero Chavez  NY                 TKO 15 (1:41)
          (Retained World Welterweight Title)
18 Nov    Bruce Curry         NY                   W 10


4 Feb     Bruce Curry         NY                   W 10
25 Aug    Randy Shields       NY                   KO 6
5 Dec     Verno Lewis         NY                   W 10


14 Jan    Carlos Palomino     Puerto Rico          W 15
          (Won World & WBC Welterweight Title)
25 Mar    Harold Weston       Puerto Rico          W 15
          (Retained World & WBC Welterweight Title)
30 Nov    Ray Leonard         NV              TKO by 15
          (Lost World & WBC Welterweight Title)


9 Mar     Johnny Turner       FL                   KO 9
1 Aug     Tony Chiaverini     NV                   KO 8
12 Dec    Pete Ranzany        CA                   W 10


23 May    Maurice Hope        NV                   KO 12
          (Won WBC Jr. Middleweight Title)
13 Nov    Carlos Santos       NV                   W 15
          (Retained WBC Jr. Middleweight Title)


30 Jan    Roberto Duran       NV                   W 15
          (Retained WBC Jr. Middleweight Title)
3 Dec     Thomas Hearns       LA                   L 15
          (Lost WBC Jr. Middleweight Title)


18 May    Tony Cerda          NV                   W 10
16 Jul    Mustafa Hamsho      NV                   L 12


11 Feb    Stacey McSwain      MI                   W 10
14 Jul    Davey Moore         Monte Carlo          KO by 2


30 Mar    Mauricio Bravo      Aruba                KO 2
7 Jul     Danny Chapman       WA                   KO 7
21 Aug    Kevin Moley         NY                   W 10


15 Feb    Matthew Hilton      Canada               KO by 9
1 Jul     Paul Whittaker      LA                   W 10
17 Sep    Henry Daniels       MD                   W 10
28 Nov    Carlos Herrera      Argentina            KO by 7


8 Mar     Ariel Conde         Phoenix, AZ          KO 7 
23 May    Pat Lawlor                  AZ           L 10
24 Aug    Sam Wilson          Denver               W 10
18 Sep    Scott Papsadora     Canada               L 10