The biography of Ike Ibeabuchi, the former Nigerian boxer

The biography of Ike Ibeabuchi, the former Nigerian boxer

Claudia Kogi
updated at December 9, 2023 at 5:08 PM

Chances are pretty good that if a boxing fan is asked to name a hugely talented heavyweight champion who has reigned for the last 2 or 3 decades and made it look easy, then names such as Ike Ibeabuchi would pop right up. The success he has showcased since his debut has been more than clear that it was what he was meant to do.

Ike Ibeabuchi's record
Ike Ibeabuchi poses for a portrait on 18 June 1999, in New York. Photo: The Ring Magazine (Modified by author)
Source: Getty Images

Who is Ike Ibeabuchi, though? Ikemefula Charles Ike Ibeabuchi is a Nigerian-based former professional boxer who competed from 1994 to 1999 in the heavyweight division—one of his notable moments occurred when he defeated a previously undefeated highly ranked contender, David Tua, in 1997. This article deets more information about the Nigerian boxer, including his net worth, whereabouts, and personal details.

Ike Ibeabuchi's profile summary

Full name

Ikemefula Charles Ike Ibeabuchi

Date of birth

2 February 1973


50 years as of December 2023

Place of birth

Isuochi, Nigeria






Patricia Ibeabuchi


6 feet 2 inches or 188 centimetres


245 pounds or 111 kilograms


Former professional boxer

Net worth

Approximately between $1 million and $4 million

Ike Ibeabuchi's bio

The former professional athlete, Ike Ibeabuchi (age 50 years as of December 2023), was born on 2 February 1973 in a small village in Isuochi, Nigeria, to Patricia Ibeabuchi. Although there are not many details about his family and childhood, the player is said to have had a difficult childhood, from not being raised by his father to being the only breadwinner in the family.

Regarding his physical stats, Ike Ibeabuchi's weight is 245 pounds or 111 kilograms. He stands at 6 feet 2 inches or 188 centimetres, his reach is 76 inches or 193 centimetres, and he has black hair and brown eyes.

Ike Ibeabuchi's career

Ike began his journey to stardom when he planned on joining the Nigerian military before witnessing Buster Douglas knock out Mike Tyson in 1990. While he did not have a specific side to cheer on, he still got inspired by the fight, and sooner or later, he started boxing as an amateur.

His boxing skills were on another level, and he defeated countryman and eventual 1996 Olympic Bronze medalist Duncan Dokiwari twice. This then forced him to move with his mother to Dallas, the United States of America. The two had barely settled when Ike won the Dallas and Texas State Golden Gloves tournaments at heavyweight in 1994.

His name was now roaming across the Dallas streets, and he began boxing in various tournaments professionally. Under the guidance of the former world welterweight champion, Curtis Cokes, the Nigerian boxer made his professional debut at heavyweight with a second-round knockout of Ismael Garcia.

Ike Ibeabuchi's record

After winning 16 straight fights since his debut, the former professional athlete made a big step in his career when he encountered the undefeated prospect David Tua for the WBC International Heavyweight title in 1997. More like a battlefield, the two champions threw bombs, and neither took a backward step all night.

That night alone, they set a CompuStat heavyweight division record with 1,730 punches thrown. Ike also set the individual CompuStat record by throwing 975 punches and averaging 81 per round. (Keep in mind that the heavyweight average is around 50).

Additionally, Ibeabuchi won a unanimous 12-round decision over Tua with scores of 117-111, 116-113, and 115-114. As a result, it established him as the top contender for the world heavyweight title.

What happened to Ike Ibeabuchi?

Well, a couple of months after encountering David Tua, Ike found himself on the wrong side of the law and paparazzi. This was after he allegedly abducted the 15-year-old son of his former girlfriend and slammed his car into a concrete pillar on Interstate 35 north of Austin, Texas.

Reportedly, the boy suffered numerous severe injuries from the accident that resulted in him never walking normally again. After a court hearing, the judge concluded that the professional athlete was trying to commit suicide, and he was sentenced to 120 days in jail after pleading guilty to false imprisonment.

After serving that sentence, it was hardly one year when he got himself on the wrong side of the law again. This time, he faced trial over several sexual assault charges in Las Vegas and Arizona. This subsequently forced him to enter an Alford plea, pleading guilty, and sentenced to two to ten years for battery with intent to commit a crime and 3 to 20 years for attempted sexual assault.

His mother went public pleading with the law and claiming that his son was pardoned. She wrote,

My name is Patricia Ibeabuchi, and I am a registered nurse. I am the mother of Ike Ibeabuchi. Ike and I are originally from Nigeria in Africa- I have been in the United States since 1990, and my son joined me here in 1993. I am writing this letter in hopes that I might receive your assistance in some way regarding the situation with my son Ike.

In the letter, she explained how hard and rough it had been for her and Ike since migrating to the United States of America. She goes ahead and reveals;

The hate, abuse, and violation of human rights that my son and I are facing in this country is wrong because we do not know what caused it or how it started in this country. We came to seek the American dream, and in our country, we treat everybody with love and help when necessary. In my country, people go to jail when they commit serious crimes, not accusations with no proof of evidence or because of race, appearance, colour, country of origin, or career.

Where is Ike Ibeabuchi now?

After his release in September 2020, the Nigerian former professional boxer has since maintained a low profile. He has not disclosed any details about his whereabouts and what he is up to.

Ike Ibeabuchi's net worth

According to WikiaBio, the former professional boxer has an estimated net worth ranging between $1 million and $5 million.

Interesting facts about Ike Ibeabuchi

Despite his controversial life in and out of prison, he is regarded among the most influential and skilled boxers in the sport's history. Here are some interesting facts about him.

Who are Ike Ibeabuchi's parents?

Ike Ibeabuchi's net worth
Ibeabuchi poses for a portrait on 18 June 1999, in New York. Photo: The Ring Magazine (Modified by author)
Source: Getty Images

The former professional boxing athlete was born to Patricia Ibeabuchi. Unfortunately, there are no details regarding his father or siblings.

What is Ike Ibeabuchi's nationality?

The professional heavyweight champion is a Nigerian national of a mixed ethnic background.

Is Ike Ibeabuchi married?

As of December 2023, the former professional heavyweight champion has not disclosed any information regarding his relationship or marital status.

Is Ike Ibeabuchi on Instagram?

Unfortunately, the former boxing athlete is not dynamic on social media platforms.

Final word

Ike Ibeabuchi is one sought-after personality who, despite his controversial life, is renowned for defeating a previously undefeated highly ranked contender, David Tua, in 1997. As a result, he made a name for himself in his home country, Nigeria, and the whole of the United States of America.

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Claudia Kogi
Claudia Kogi is a Kenyan content creator with over 3 years of experience. Claudia joined as a writer in January 2022, covering sports and relatable content.