Boxer dies in motorcycle crash |

Boxer dies in motorcycle crash

AP Photoeferee Tony Weeks, right, steps in to stop the fight as WBO/WBC lightweight champion Diego Corrales lands a flurry of unanswered punches on Jose Luis Castillo, left, of Mexico, in the 10th round of their unification bout in this May 7, 2005 file photo at the Mandalay Bay Events Center in Las Vegas. Corrales, who won titles in two weight classes and was involved in one of the most memorable fights in recent times, died Monday, May 7, 2007 in a motorcycle accident, his promoter said. He was 29.

LAS VEGAS ” Diego Corrales, who won titles in two weight classes and was involved in one of the most exciting fights in recent years, died in a motorcycle accident a few miles from the Las Vegas Strip. He was 29.

His promoter, Gary Shaw, said Corrales was driving his motorcycle at a high rate of speed when he ran into the back of a car Monday night. Shaw said Corrales, whose career had faltered the past two years, recently bought a racing motorcycle and apparently was riding it the time he was killed.

“He fought recklessly and he lived recklessly,” Shaw said. “That was his style.”

Las Vegas police spokesman Jose Montoya said the victim in the accident was wearing a helmet, and police were investigating if drugs or alcohol was involved.

Corrales, who fought most of his career at 130 pounds, was a big puncher best known for getting up after two 10th-round knockdowns to stop Jose Luis Castillo on May 7, 2005, in what the Boxing Writers Association of America and numerous boxing publications called the fight of the year.

Corrales, though, was knocked out by Castillo in the rematch and then had three straight fights undermined at the weigh-in.

Castillo couldn’t make weight twice against Corrales, and the second time Corrales refused to fight him at the higher weight, costing himself a $1.3 million payday. And then Corrales weighed in a whopping 5 pounds over the weight limit for his WBC 135-pound title defense against Joel Casamayor, and went on to lose the fight.

He lost his last three fights, including his last one April 7 against Joshua Clottey in Springfield, Mo. He had moved up two weight divisions to welterweight for that fight.

Corrales was born in Sacramento, Calif., and lived in Las Vegas in recent years. He won his first 33 fights and held a piece of the 130-pound title before he was stopped by Floyd Mayweather Jr. in a unification fight in January 2001.

Corrales was sent to jail on a domestic abuse charge after that fight, and didn’t fight again for two years. He came back to fight a trilogy against Casamayor, losing two of the three fights, and split a pair of fights with Castillo.

“He always cared about the fans and gave them their money’s worth,” Shaw said. “He was a true warrior. He was what boxing stood for, and what boxing is all about.”

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