Chris Byrd has tasted victory and wants to get to the peak of the mountain. He prepares to battle heavyweight Jeff Pegues, of Akron, OH, at the soaring Eagle Casino in Mt. Pleasant as a warm up fight for the winner of the Lewis-Tyson fight. He is the number one IBF contender and was passed over by Lewis in the title-defense fight. The born again Christian has a dream to be Heavyweight champion of the world- if it's God's will.
Chris Byrd checks out the home of some people who usually rode the Trinity Baptist Church bus to Church but found they had moved. He is a regular, riding the bus through town on an east side route, picking up intercity children and families to bring to their suburban church for worship.
Popular with the kids, Byrd jokes with Tiffany Savoie and Brittani Kirkman as he arrives at church after riding the church bus through Flint, bringing children to Trinity Baptist Church. The girls were lying in wait for him, running out to greet him as soon as they saw him arrive.
Chris Byrd prays with his pastor Len Saunders in Byrd's hotel room, just hours prior to his fight with heavyweight Jeff Pegues, of Akron, OH, at the soaring Eagle Casino.
Chris Byrd enters the ring for fight with heavyweight Jeff Pegues, of Akron, OH, at the soaring Eagle Casino in Mt. Pleasant. The fight is a formality, needing to box to keep his number one IBF rating while he waits for a title fight.
Joe Byrd enters the ring with son Chris Byrd, whose shorts adorned with bible verse and children's names, as he prepares for fight with heavyweight Jeff Pegues, of Akron, OH, at the soaring Eagle Casino in Mt. Pleasant.
Chris Byrd glistens with sweat in a post fight press conference after defeating fellow heavyweight Jeff Pegues. He calls out Lennex Lewis who won't fight him and says the next fight should rightfully be his. He is managed by his wife but they begin contemplating signing with Don King who has pursued him for years in order to get his shot at the Championship.
After signing with Don King Productions, Byrd is given a title fight with Evander Holyfield, open when Lennox Lewis abandoned it instead of fighting Byrd. Reports were that King gave Lewis $1 million and a new Land Rover in order to give up the belt. Holyfield was unable to match Byrd and his elusive style. Byrd landed more than twice as many punches as Holyfield.
After finishing the 12th round, Byrd went across the ring to pray with Evander Holyfield at the end of their IBF World Championship fight in Atlantic City before the decision is announced.
Promoter Don King celebrates with Chris Byrd his victory over Evander Holyfield IBF World Championship fight in Atlantic City, NJ. Byrd had recently signed with King who has pursued him for years in order to get his shot at the Championship. Chris now holds one of the three championship belts, needing to fight Lewis to get a shot at being a unanimous champion.
As the party breaks up in an outer room, Chris Byrd relaxes with his wife Tracy at 3:15 am Sunday in his hotel room after defeating Evander Holyfield to win the IBF World Championship fight in Atlantic City. The two had finally gotten their big payday and the championship belt. Chris credits his Christianity to saving their marriage. "This is a sport to me. I want to win and am competitive but to glorify Christ is the main thing for me," Byrd said.