Lakusta recalls LeDoux's toughness

Scott LeDoux, left, and Ken Lakusta do the staredown prior to their Edmonton charity match in 1983....

Scott LeDoux, left, and Ken Lakusta do the staredown prior to their Edmonton charity match in 1983. (QMI Agency)

MURRAY GREIG, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 7:14 PM ET

EDMONTON - When he was informed that former world title challenger Scott LeDoux died last week after a long battle with Lou Gehrig’s disease, Ken Lakusta sadly shook his head.

“He was a real original ... one of the nicest guys I ever met in boxing,” Edmonton’s two-time Canadian heavyweight champ said of LeDoux, who was 62.

“Me and Scott probably sparred 300 rounds together back in the early ’80s, and we had a charity match here in ’83. He fought to a draw with Ken Norton and lost a split decision to Ron Lyle — but he put both those guys on the floor. He got stopped by Larry Holmes in 1980, but he put up a hell of a fight.

“What I remember most about Scott was how physically tough he was. He was a great puncher and he could really take a shot, too. He always told me: ‘Don’t take no prisoners.’ ”

Nicknamed ‘The Fighting Frenchman,’ LeDoux cracked the world’s top 10 after battling to a draw with Leon Spinks just a few months before Spinks wrested the title from Muhammad Ali in 1978.

The previous year, after losing a controversial decision to Johnny Boudreaux in a bout televised on ABC’s Wide World of Sports, LeDoux attempted to kick Boudreaux while he was doing a ringside interview — but instead he knocked the toupee off Howard Cosell’s head.

“I still watch that tape whenever I need a good laugh,” LeDoux said in a 2008 interview. “Howard never knew what hit him.”

LeDoux retired in the summer of 1983, four months after stopping Larry Ware in Edmonton. His career mark was 33-13-4 (22 KOs).

murray.greig@sunmedia.ca


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