"Marvelous" Middleweight Marvin Hagler Died of Natural Causes at 66 Years Old

What happened to middleweight legend and one of boxing's favorite pugilists, Marvelous Marvin Hagler?

Mustafa Gatollari - Author

Mar. 15 2021, Published 2:15 p.m. ET

Marvin Hagler
Source: YouTube

There are different types of athletes. Some are naturally gifted. Whether it's due to an innate understanding of a particular game or being blessed with hitting the genetic lottery, they don't really need to put in as much effort in order to get the same results as someone who trains like a madman. Then there are people who have those gifts and still possess this work ethic (Jon Jones, Aleksander Karelin, etc.). 

The thing is, with Marvin Hagler, it was hard to tell which kind of person he was. This could be a big reason why the boxing world is so broken up over what happened to him.

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What happened to Marvelous Marvin Hagler? He reportedly died of natural causes.

Marvin Hagler's website reports, "We are very sad to report that Marvelous Marvin Hagler died on March 13 of natural causes near his home in New Hampshire. He was a champion until the end. His family asks for privacy at this time of sorrow."

However, there are some anti-vaxxers taking to the internet offering up their own reasons as to why the fighter passed away.

what happened to marvin hagler
Source: Getty
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'Infowars' reported that Hagler was "executed" by the COVID-19 vaccine.

The website that is regarded as one of the largest conspiracy theory outlets on the internet attributed Hagler's death to be a direct result of him being administered the vaccine. It didn't take long for several social media posts and blogs to attribute the champion's death to his inoculation against the coronavirus.

The "panic" over Hagler's COVID-19 vaccine began with an Instagram post from Thomas Hearns, a former opponent of Marvin Hagler's. Their fight is considered by boxing fans to be one of the sport's greatest bouts ever, despite only lasting eight minutes. Hearns wrote in his post, "A real true warrior, pray for the king and his family.. he’s in ICU fighting the after-effects of the vaccine! He’ll be just fine but we could use the positive energy and prayer for his full recovery!"

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It didn't take long for the comment section of Hearns' post to be flooded with Instagram users blaming the vaccination for Hagler's passing.

One user wrote, "The vaccine killed the Great Hank Aaron and now Marvelous Marvin Hagler," another wrote, "My favorite boxer of all time, taken too early. This vaccine is killing a lot of people. His family is in our prayers." Tons of other similar comments were listed in response to Hearns' post.

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This is something that the Motor City Cobra didn't appreciate. He called out anti-vaxxers, stating that his post was meant to honor Hagler's legacy, not call attention to an anti-vaccination agenda.

"Our love and respect to Marvin and his family, this is not an anti-vaccine campaign," he wrote. "It's outrageous to have that in mind during the passing of a King, Legend, Father, Husband and so much more."

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The CDC has reported that vaccines are "safe and effective" and that dire side effects are highly unlikely: "Results from monitoring efforts are reassuring. Some people have no side effects. Many people have reported only mild side effects after COVID-19 vaccination."

Marvelous Marvin Hagler is considered by many to be one of the sport's greatest champions due to his intense work ethic and the way he lived his life both in and outside of the ring. Originally born in the Central Ward of Newark, New Jersey, Marvelous moved with his family to Brockton, Massachusetts as a young boy following the Newark Riots.

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He took up the sport after being beaten up by a local boxer. He got so angry at the loss that he wanted to learn how to fight for himself, so he went the next day into a gym owned by brothers Pat and Guido "Goody" Patronelli. 

The local trainers put Marvin to work and he developed into a tremendous local talent. Not only did Marvin beat up his bully in front of all of his friends, but he went on to become the middleweight champion of the world.

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He had to lie about his age in order to get into boxing tournaments as a youngster, a fact that was only revealed in 1982 when he legally changed his name from Marvin Nathaniel Hagler to Marvelous Marvin Hagler. He officially changed it to "Marvelous" because he wanted network announcers to say his nickname while referring to him in his fights.

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Hagler's road to the championship was tough, as many fighters refused to sign up to fight him. As former champion Joe Frazier told him, "You have three strikes against you. You're black, you're a southpaw, and you're good." Hagler would often have to travel to the hometowns of other fighters, who were generally "gifted" victories from biased local judges or given a draw.

His losses against Willie Monroe and Bobby Watts are generally considered to be robberies, and he didn't get a title shot until his 50th professional fight, which was against Vito Antuofermo. Despite bloodying up his opponent and beating him over the course of 15 rounds, judges announced the fight a draw. He went on to defeat Alan Minter for the WBA, WBC, and The Ring middleweight titles.

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what happened to marvin hagler
Source: Getty

Hagler defended his title 12 times, but many believe that had he been given a "fair shake" earlier on in his career, that number could've easily been doubled. He lost his title to Sugar Ray Leonard in a highly controversial bout filled with stipulations that many argued "favored" Leonard.

Marvelous lobbied for a rematch after losing the decision to Leonard but ultimately retired in June of 1988.

After his boxing career, Marvin Hagler became an actor, appearing in Italian films: Indio, Indio 2: La Revolta, Notti di paura, and Virtual Weapon. Marvelous is survived by his wife Kay, his five children from his first marriage to his wife, Bertha, and his half-brother Robbie Sims, who is also a middleweight boxer.

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