|Bermane 'B-Ware' Stiverne - Boxing Bio
By Media report on Doghouse Boxing (Jan 27, 2009)
Born in La Plaine, Haiti; raised in Miami & Montreal, Canada; now living in Las Vegas
Height: 6’ 2” Weight: Heavyweight (248)
Record: 16-1, 16 KOs
Bermane Stiverne was born on the northern tip of the island nation of Haiti, growing up in the city of La Plaine50 miles across the water from Cubaas part of a family of 14 children. He was the youngest boy with five brothers. When he was a child, his father moved to Canada and sent money home from his job as a taxi driver in Montreal.
At age 10, his mother Rose Mary moved Bermane and his sisters to join family already in Miami. She worked as a seamstress to support the family and put herself through nursing school.
Stiverne spent three years in elementary school in Miami, mastering English to go with his native Creole language. His life changed at age 12 when he entered junior high school.
“It was like I had ‘fight me’ pasted on my forehead,” Stiverne recalled of entering the seventh grade. “I guess it was because I was new at this school and the eighth-graders tried to pick on me. The difference between me and the other seventh-graders was I wouldn’t take it from them. I refused to submit.”
The eighth-graders had such difficulty subduing Bermane, they recruited some ninth-grade students from a nearby high school to challenge him.
“It got pretty bad,” Stiverne said. “They tried to jump me at school. I wasn’t the only one to get this treatment. It was like an initiation. The difference with me was I refused to be beaten.”
The police were summoned to the school and Stiverne was suspended for defending himself. “They told me I should have run to the office rather than fight. I don’t think they completely understood what would happen to a kid who showed that type of weakness.”
Stiverne’s mother was alarmed. She feared her boy might join a gang or be confronted by one, so she immediately shipped Bermane to his father in Montreal.
Bermane was reunited with his brother Pedro, three years his senior, and four older sisters. He also added a third language to his resume: French.
“My brother and sisters welcomed me and eased my transition in Canada. I got into some fights but nothing like what I experienced in Miami. My father was a kickboxer who won some titles. He knew what time it was. He was stricter with me.”
Due to his father’s love of kickboxing and karate, mixed martial arts had always been in the back of his mind, but he played basketball and football in high school. Bermane was a standout linebacker. His older brother John had stayed in Miami and had played for the collegiate Hurricanes, so when it came time for Bermane to go to college, his brother John reached out to then Miami defensive coordinator Randy Shannon.
His brother’s efforts paid off when Bermane was offered a scholarship to play football for the Michigan State Spartans, then led by Nick Saban. Stiverne’s collegiate football career was sidelined in training camp before he had even had a chance to crack his books.
Returning to Miami, he took a job for two years telemarketing mobile phones before relocating to Montreal.
“I gained a lot of weight selling cell phones and calling plans,” Stiverne said. “A friend of mine said he had lost a lot of weight after taking up boxing so I went to the gym with him.”
One year later on Nov. 16, 1999, Stiverne embarked on an amateur boxing career where he would become six-time Quebec Golden Gloves champion (1999-2005) and Canadian national champion four times (2001-2005). He was a member of the Canadian national team from 2003 to 2005 where he participated in international meets against England, the United States, Poland and others.
“I was in the trials to determine who would represent Canada in the Olympics in 2004,” Stiverne said. “I made it to the semi-finals in Mexico where I faced George Garcia. I know everybody cries foul when they lose but I knocked this guy down three times and he never knocked me down but still won the decision.”
Stiverne earned a bronze medal, but only the winner of the gold was invited to represent Canada in the heavyweight division that year.
Stiverne met up with manager Paul Fucoloro and trainer Don House who brought him in touch with legendary fight promoter Don King. The management, training and promotional troika has remained in tact during Stiverne’s entire professional career where all 15 of his wins have come by knockout.
His lone loss came in a controversial stoppage against Demetrice King at Harbor Yard Arena in Bridgeport, Conn., on July 7, 2007.
Stiverne had scored an astonishing nine first-round knockouts in 12 fights going into the match with King. In those 12 fights, he had only tallied 17 rounds. Stiverne started to hear some voices that wanted to see him ply his craft for more rounds.
When the bell rang in the King fight, Stiverne decided to slow his attack and spent more time feeling out his opponent. Unfamiliar in his new role, Stiverne kept King around into round four where his opponent became more courageous and started throwing more punches. The match began to more resemble a sparring session than the normal early destruction by Stiverne.
The only problem was referee John Callas, from West Hartford, Conn., was not familiar with Stiverne or his game plan. Callas felt Stiverne was in trouble and inexplicably stopped the fight while Stiverne was landing a stiff jab.
“I was never hurt,” a furious Stiverne said after the early stoppage. “I can’t believe the referee stopped the fight.
“King and I were talking to one another during the final exchanges saying, ‘hit harder, hit harder.’ Watch the tape of the fight. The referee stopped the fight while I was landing a jab.
“I was undefeated but people kept telling me that because many of my fights have lasted only one round that ‘you need to prove you can go rounds.’ I will never listen to what anyone has to say about my fighting style again. I was trying to go rounds and it cost me. Look at me. Do I look beaten up? I wasn’t and I’m not.”
Stiverne has reeled off four consecutive first-round knockouts since the defeat. He believes a world championship match will come for him as long as he stays right with God and remains dedicated and focused in all facets of his life.
“Don King controls the heavyweights and I believe I’m getting somewhere,” Stiverne said after his last match. “You know there’s no better promoter than Don King. If I want to be the best, I have to be with the best. Don King calls the shots and I’ll make them.”
When not in the ring, Stiverne spends his time being a father to his 7-year-old son Keyshaun and likes to bowl two to three times per week.
His mother taught him how to cook when he was 7, and he still likes to work in the kitchen. His best dish is spaghetti. He is a self-professed meat lover who likes steaks, chops, pizza and pasta.
His favorite movies are Lord of the Rings and 300.
He learned how to play the saxophone while attending church and can also play bass guitar and drums. He loves many styles of music including blues, jazz, reggae, hip-hop, rock and classical.
Some of his favorite artists include Sade, B.B. King and Kenny G.
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