Endings don’t get much more dramatic than this. Expectations were high for the bout nicknamed “Thunder Meets Lightning”, referring to Chavez’s punching power and Taylor’s speed. And while the fight definitely delivered, it enters folklore for the nature of the sudden, dramatic, and controversial ending that continues to be debated to this day. Taylor steadily built a commanding lead on points thanks to easily evading his opponent and outpunching him by a margin of 5-1. But when Chavez did manage to connect, his punches did considerable damage as a result of being the heavier man.
Going into the 12th, Taylor was ahead on all three scorecards (and by a big margin on two of them) but for some reason, Taylor’s trainer Lou Duva told his man that he needed to win the final round. Bad move: Taylor was so tired that he fell to the canvas just by failing to land a wild left hand. The final minute was all Chavez and he dropped Taylor with seconds remaining. Taylor got to his feet and was asked by referee Richard Steel if he was able to continue. By not answering (though some say Taylor gave a slight nod), Steele concluded he was unfit to carry on and stopped the fight, scoring a TKO victory for Chavez with only two seconds to go. No wonder his 2009 autobiography was called Two Seconds From Glory.