Scotland Wales Northern Ireland
BBC Homepage feedback | low graphics version
BBC Sport Online
You are in: Sports Talk  
Front Page 
Results/Fixtures 
Football 
Cricket 
Rugby Union 
Rugby League 
Tennis 
Golf 
Motorsport 
Boxing 
Athletics 
Other Sports 
Sports Talk 
Football Talk 
Forum 
In Depth 
Photo Galleries 
Audio/Video 
TV & Radio 
BBC Pundits 
Question of Sport 
Funny Old Game 

Around The Uk

BBC News

BBC Weather

Friday, 27 April, 2001, 15:40 GMT 16:40 UK
Butterbean: boxing's nemesis?
Butterbean: disaster for boxing?
Eric Esch, otherwise known as Butterbean, is to fight at the Wembley Conference Centre.

America laps up the 25 stone factory worker turned boxing champion, but many British fight enthusiasts feel he is turning boxing into a freak show.

We asked you: Is Butterbean debasing the noble art? Or are you in on the joke?


Ten years ago a 31 stone factory worker from Alabama entered Toughman, a televised street fighting competition - and won.

Now down to a svelte 25 stone thanks largely to a butterbean diet, Eric Esch has made an estimated $1m from professional boxing.

Stateside he's a comic hero. In Britain, one newspaper labelled him The Raging Blanchmange.

The British press fear Butterbean could be the clown that completes the boxing circus.

We wanted your opinions of Butterbean. Is reducing boxing to farce? Or should he be viewed as an entirely separate comic turn?

Scroll down to view your responses.


I can name few former and current heavyweight champions Butterbean can beat over four rounds.
Ndoda, South Africa

If he can fight within the rules, that's all that matters. Who cares If physically he looks like a bodybuilder or a tub of lard, as long as he wins his fights fair and square?
C, France

Boxing is a farce and butterbean, while a likeable character, personifies the farce. He simply uses his weight to bully and beat the pulp out of his opponents. Very sporting, I don't think.
Adam Edwards, Australia

A sport that allows any size and shape at international level is great. Good on Butterbean for getting this far and may he continue to do well.
Pete Milmine, uk


He may not be elegant but he can fight, and will give value for money
  Stephen Moses, Canada
I watched the Lewis v Rahman fight which was enough to know that boxing is already farcically bad - at least at heavyweight.
Jel, England

Butterbean looks in better shape than Lennox did last week.
Alec, UK

I've seen this guy fight and he's good. Sure, conditioning is an important factor, but it's mainly about technique. I've seen this guy K.O. fast and agile musclemen with ease.
Aziz, half English/half Kuwaiti (in USA)

Last week I watched a tape of Ali and Frazier, the thriller in manilla. What a joy to watch. I've seen Butterbean fight, he may not be elegant but he can fight and will give value for money and will bring some fresh air to a sport that has gone very stale. Welcome to Wembley Butterbean.
stephen moses, canada

Butterbean has a solid record of 62-1-2. So he can fight. Besides, he is the Superheavyweight Champion. Its about time a Superheavyweight division is made and recognised universaly, since these days there are bigger and bigger heavyweights. And Butterbean is the greatest of them all.
Finnegan, USA


Last week I watched a tape of Ali-Frazier. What a joy to watch. I read today the daughters of these 2 great fighters are getting it on in a supposed sequel.Together with the latest Lewis and Prince Naseem farce it seems difficult to drag the sport down any further.


Butterbean reducing boxing to a farce? Surely Don King did that years ago!
  Bruce, USA
I've seen Butterbean fight, he may not be elegant but he can fight and will give value for money and will bring some fresh air to a sport that has gone very stale. Welcome to Wembley Butterbean.
Stephen Moses,Canada

How refreshing to see someone with little or no athletic ability making a success of himself in a physical sport (I wouldn't call darts particulatly physical.

I agree with Bruce, but can also add the names of Mike Tyson, Andrew Golota, Henry Akinwade & I'm sure there are others I can't think of at the moment
Samir, UK


I've never seen him box but you at least expect a boxer to be able to move around
  Carl Tams, UK

Butterbean is not that bad. Boxing is not about weight alone, it's equally about skill.
OBI WOBO, NIGERIA

Doesn't anyone remember Foreman fighting a few years ago at the age of 45? He was 20 stone+, so in terms of weight we cannot moan. I've never seen him box but you at least expect a boxer to be able to move around. At 25 stone I doubt it....
Carl Tams, UK

Butterbean reducing boxing to a farce? Surely Don King did that years ago!
Bruce, USA

Search BBC Sport Online
Advanced search options
Internet links:


The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites

Links to top Sports Talk stories are at the foot of the page.


Links to other Sports Talk stories

^^ Back to top