Butterbean Returns Friday

Lee Cleveland Updated
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Esch fights Allan at Horseshoe after two-year hiatus.

The colorful Eric 'Butterbean,' Esch, 45, will step inside a boxing ring for the 90th time in his career on Friday night when he meets Curt Allan (7-1-1, 3 KO) at the Horseshoe Casino in Indiana.

Esch (77-8-4, 58 KO) last fought in October 2009, losing a four-round split decision to Harry Funmaker in their third meeting. Esch drew with Funmaker in the fisrt bout and won a four round decision in their second.

Known as the "King of the 4 Rounders", Butterbean developed a cult following after he burst onto the Toughman Contest scene in Texarkana, AR before entering the world of professional boxing in 1994. He was a five time World Toughman Heavyweight Champion with a record of 56-5 with 36 knockouts (not counted towards pro career). It has been said that he got his nickname when he had to go on a diet (consisting mostly of chicken and butterbeans) to meet the Toughman 400-pound weight limit.

While a majority of his professional boxing opponents were either novices or technically limited club-level fighters, he did face 53 year old former heavyweight champion Larry Holmes in 2002. Holmes won the fight on points, using his superior skills, speed and technique to easily outpoint Butterbean, who was credited with a controversial knockdown in the final round. The Holmes fight is one of only three fights in an 89 fight career that was scheduled for more than four rounds.

Butterbean's previous fighting experiences led him to venture into mixed martial arts. Although Esch was sometimes ridiculed for beating low-tier boxers, he performed moderately well against legitimate MMA opposition, earning a record of 14-8-1.

The Opponent
Little is known about Curt Allan other than he is 47 years old and will be making his first ring appearance since May 1999.

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