Cruiserweight champion Denis Lebedev has officially announced his retirement from the sport of boxing.
Lebedev posted the following on Instagram and discussed the reason why he is retiring. The reason why the 39-year-old is stepping away from the sport is that he wants to spend time with his family.
"It's time to part with a great sport. As a real man, husband and father, I have to concentrate on my large family and try to pay as much attention as possible to my own loved ones. But life does not stand still, and together with you we will do great and small good deeds for our country, for our young people. After all, this is also my family. And we will succeed! With great love for you, Denis Lebedev!"
Пришло время расставаться с большим спортом. Как настоящий мужчина, муж и отец я обязан сконцентрироваться на своей большой семье и постараться как можно больше уделить внимание своим самым родным людям. Но жизнь не стоит на месте и вместе с вами мы будем делать большие и малые добрые дела для своей страны, для нашей молодёжи. Ведь это тоже моя семья И у нас все получиться! С большой любовью к вам Денис Лебедев!
Lebedev held the WBA "Super" cruiserweight title and was deep in negotiations with "Regular" champion Arsen Goulamirian. Talks fell through after Lebedev and his team believed the offers sent to him by Goulamirian were nowhere near close to their liking. With Lebedev retiring, Goulamirian now becomes the sole champion at 200 pounds for the governing body.
The Russian became the WBA "Super" champion once again earlier this year when Oleksandr Usyk vacated that version of the cruiserweight world title. Lebedev held the title before Usyk, but took a break from boxing, which meant the title would be up for grabs in the first World Boxing Super Series cruiserweight tournament, later won by Usyk last year.
Sporting a 32-2 record with one no contest, Lebedev owns one of the most impressive resumes at 200 pounds in the 2010s. Lebedev's two defeats were split decision losses to Marco Huck and Murat Gassiev in world title fights, but his wins outweigh the two losses. Lebedev owns wins over James Toney, Roy Jones Jr., Enzo Maccarinelli, Lateef Kayode to count a few. The last time Lebedev fought was a dominant 12-round decision against Mike Wilson back in November 2018.