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Since 1978, the last year something like sanity prevailed in heavyweight boxing, guys named Muhammad, Leon, Ken, Larry, John, Mike, Monte, Michael, Gerrie, Tim, Greg, Tony and Pinklon have all been champions. Confusing? You better believe it. If you weren't counting, there have been 13 champions in those seven years. If you count back 13 champions from '78, you will arrive at James J. Braddock, who won his title 50 years ago. It's even more unsettling to note that since 1885, when John L. Sullivan became the first modern champion, only 38 men have claimed boxing's most-prized title, and more than a third of them have done so since 1978. Something definitely is amiss, that's clear. What isn't always clear is what's going on. To better your understanding of the present and recent past, we offer the following exam.
1. In the past eight weeks all of these men have fought for a heavyweight championship. Identify them.
2. A piece of cake, right? O.K., who is this two-time heavyweight champ? Hints: He defeated Larry Simmons for the title on May 29, 1982 and, after it was taken away, regained it by beating Tony Fulilangi on Sept. 22, 1983.
Choose the response—or responses—that come closest to answering the question accurately.
1. How many heavyweight championship bouts have been fought since February 1978, when Leon Spinks beat Muhammad Ali for the title?