Born Finbar Patrick McGuigan in Monaghan, Ulster, Ireland on February 28, 1961, he was raised in the small town of Clones. McGuigan captured a gold medal at the 1978 Commonwealth Games and turned pro in 1981.
In 1983 he won both the British and European featherweight titles. Following a win over top contender Jose Caba and former featherweight champion Juan LaPorte, McGuigan was matched with Eusebio Pedroza for his WBA featherweight title. On June 8, 1985 a crowd of nearly 26,000 packed Queen's Park Rangers Stadium in London to see a match-up between McGuigan and the skillful Panamanian legend. McGuigan dropped Pedroza in the 7th round and after 15 grueling rounds, was awarded the decision and the championship. McGuigan was successful in two title defenses against Bernard Taylor (KO8) and Danilo Cabrera (TKO14) before meeting Steve Cruz for his third defense. In 110-degree heat in Caesars Palace McGuigan hit the canvas in the 10th and 15th rounds of the toe-to-toe affair and after 15 rounds, Cruz was the new champion via 15-round decision.
Inactive for two years after the Cruz battle, McGuigan re-emerged for four bouts before retiring in 1989 with a 32-3 (28 KOs) record. Noted for his stamina, courage, durable chin, determination, and busy style, McGuigan is a hero in his native land. His immense popularity transcended boxing. Long-standing violence between Catholics and Protestants subsided when McGuigan stepped in the ring. The popular saying of the day was "Leave the fighting to McGuigan."
Since retiring from the ring, the effervescent Irishman has served as a noted television commentator and columnist.
Born: Feb. 28, 1961