Top 25 Montreal Sports Moments Of 2014: 10-6

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7. Bermane Stiverne Wins WBC Title

Sportsnet Magazine called it the most overlooked Canadian accomplishment in 2014, and they aren’t wrong.

Stiverne, who was born in Haiti but raised in Montreal, won the WBC Heavyweight title in May. Stiverne dropped Chris Arreola twice in the sixth round and the referee stopped the fight with under a minute remaining in the round.

The title is the title in boxing when you think of the heavyweight title. It was the one won by Muhammad Ali, Joe Frazier, Lennox Lewis and Mike Tyson. It was vacated by Vitali Klitschko – who had successfully defended the title nine times – as he retired and went into politics in his native Ukraine.

Stiverne is the second Canadian to win the title after Trevor Berbick in 1986. Of course, Lennox Lewis was also raised in Canada but was chose to box professionally as a Brit. Lewis boxed at the Olympics as a Canadian.

Stiverne is 24-1-1 in his career with 21 knockouts. He is 35 years old and is considered a late bloomer. He has won his last 13 fights.

Stiverne’s first title defence comes January 17 against American Deontay Wilder.

Boxing has fallen behind UFC in the last little while and has lost some of the popularity it had in the 1960s and 1970s and regained with Tyson, Holyfield and even Lewis in the 1980s up until the early 2000s. It’s a major part of the reason this story flew under the radar.

There are now two Canadian WBC title holders. Adonis Stevenson has held the WBC Light Heavyweight title since 2013.

-Jared Book

Next: No. 6: An Important Announcement