Heavyweight boxer dies at 27 after spending three weeks in coma due to knockout


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A 27-year-old boxer died on Thursday after spending three weeks in a medically induced coma from his last fight.

Heavyweight Ardi Ndembo was knocked unconscious during his April 5 bout against Nestor Santana in Miami.

He was then transported to a local hospital, where he was placed in a coma, but he died earlier this week.

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Boxing gloves sit there

Three red BBE boxing gloves. (David Davies – PA Images/PA Images via Getty Images)

“We at Viva Promotions mourn the loss of Ardi Ndembo, a talented Congolese boxer who tragically passed away after a knockout in a Team Combat League match on April 5,” the promotion said in a statement, via the New York Post. “He remained in an induced coma until his untimely death. RIP Ardi Ndembo!”

Floyd Mayweather’s uncle, Jeff, works with the Team Combat League on the same team that Ndembo represented when he fought.

Boxing’s a sport where you grow up watching it and loving it, but there’s so much risk involved,” Mayweather told The Sun. “Anyone can lose their life from boxing. When something like this happens, it wakes up the whole entire world.

Boxing gloves laying on a mat inside a boxing ring.  (Fernando Lavoz/NurPhoto via Getty Images)

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“I don’t think boxing’s a bad sport, because you can die in any sport. You drive a race car at 200 mph, if it slides, you’re going to die, too. You can die in any sport, but boxing is a brutal sport.”

The league gave the fighter a 10-bell salute and is matching donations made to a GoFundMe up to $25,000.

Boxing ring

The boxing ring ahead of the heavyweight unification rematch between Oleksandr Usyk of Ukraine and Anthony Joshua of Great Britain within the ‘Rage on the Red Sea’ boxing competitions at the King Abdullah Sports Complex’s Super Dome Hall in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, on August 20, 2022.  (Ayman Yaqoob/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images)

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Ndembo, who was Congolese, was 8-0 entering the fight earlier this month. He is survived by his wife and two children.

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