When he announced his comeback in 1986, George Foreman weighed 315 pounds.
Today, four years and 22 battered pugs later, the fattest thing about Foreman is not his stomach.No, it is his pocketbook.
Beginning with $10,000 purses against the likes of Steve Zouski and Rocky Sekorski, he has graduated to $1 million paydays against opponents such as Gerry Cooney and Adilson Rodrigues. He fights Terry Anderson, a little-known boxer from Tampa, Fla., in a scheduled 10-round bout on Tuesday in London, after which may come his first title fight since Muhammad Ali upset him on Oct. 30, 1974, in Zaire.
The former heavyweight champion has made $5 million during his comeback, according to his brother and manager, Roy Foreman.
"All George has to do is keep winning," Roy said. "And the money will keep coming in."
When George Foreman began his comeback, his stomach bulging and his trunks uncomfortably tight, he had two goals - to regain the heavyweight title and to earn enough money to build a gym for disadvantaged youths.
The crown has remained elusive - although a title shot now seems tantalizingly close - but Foreman has accomplished his second objective.
A construction crew began work three weeks ago on a facility that will house a basketball gymnasium and a pool hall.
The structure is located in a rundown neighborhood of North Houston, right next to the boxing gym Foreman opened after his retirement from boxing more than 15 years ago.
"This is what the comeback was all about," Roy Foreman said. "The dream is coming true."
Construction on the facility is in its early stages, with only the concrete foundation and the steel supports for the walls and roof having been completed.