OriginAkron, Ohio, USA
Dokes turned professional in 1976. He received national exposure in a televised exhibition with Muhammad Ali in 1977, which saw Ali clown and mug while slipping Dokes' punches, but also revealed glimpses of Dokes' potential.
He came to real prominence in 1979 by defeating veteran contender Jimmy Young. His career faltered slightly after fighting to a draw with Ossie Ocasio, but Dokes returned to knock out Ocasio in one round soon thereafter. By early 1982, after a first round knockout of Lynn Ball to win the NABF title, Dokes was in line for a title shot. He was ranked #2 by the WBC and #3 by the WBA. Dokes became WBA heavyweight champion in 1982 by knocking out Mike Weaver in the first round. A rematch was ordered due to the controversial nature of referee Joey Curtis's stoppage, which some felt was premature. In the rematch, Dokes retained his title on a majority draw.
Dokes's reign as the WBA title holder was short-lived. He lost his title by a tenth round knockout to Gerrie Coetzee. He was later knocked out by future champion Evander Holyfield in a fight which was called the "Heavyweight Fight of the Year" in 1989, and the "Heavyweight Fight of the Decade" for the 1980s.
Dokes was knocked out by Razor Ruddock in 1990. In 1993, Dokes faced newly crowned heavyweight champion Riddick Bowe in his first title defense since defeating Evander Holyfield. Bowe won by TKO in the first round. Although Dokes and his team protested that the fight was stopped prematurely, it was obvious that Dokes was in no condition to continue after taking a vicious barrage of punches from the heavy hitting Bowe. After a nearly three year hiatus, Dokes returned to the ring winning 3 out 5 matches over a two year period before retiring for good in 1997.
The Ring magazine Comeback of the Year fighter for 1988.
Major World Titles
1982 Dec 10 – 1983 Sep 23
SD 10 Jose Ribalta - 1992
UD 10 Jesse Ferguson - 1992
D15 Mike Weaver - 1983
TKO 1 Mike Weaver - 1982
MD 10 Tex Cobb - 1981
UD 10 - Jimmy Young - 1979
TKO 1 Riddick Bowe - 1993
TKO 4 Donovan Ruddock - 1990
TKO 10 Evander Holyfield - 1989
KO 10 Gerrie Coetzee - 1983