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Shannon Briggs to return for a fight with Wladimir or Vitali Klitschko
Spending two weeks laid up in hospital would normally make someone tread carefully and reflect on any lessons there to be learnt. Not Shannon Briggs. Ten months after taking a vicious beating from Vitali Klitschko, thirty nine year old Briggs has announced his return the ring. But he isn't coming back just to see his career calmly roll to a stop, he has ambitions:

"I am making a comeback, not just to finish on a win, but to win the heavyweight championship of the world. Looking back on Germany, Vitali Klitschko fought me for 12 rounds with one arm and he couldn’t knock me out." 

Briggs wrote this in the new blog he has started on boxingnewsonline.net. In in, he explains how much he misses the ring, getting in the shape for the fight and the thrill of victory. Fine – lots of boxers step back out of retirement for that very reason. But he needs to be realistic; last year he went into the Klitschko fight on the back of three first round knockouts and he still got handed a pummeling

He is going to have to soundly beat four or five opponents of a good standard before he can even get near Klitschko. One of those opponents needs to be another boxer chasing a title shot, someone like Alexander Dimitrenko, Tyson Fury, Denis Boytsov or Chris Arreola. He has to beat a top-tier boxer if his ambitions are to be taken seriously.

Can Briggs Do It?

If he can get in shape and beat one of these guys, Briggs certainly has the pedigree for a title chase. A power puncher with tremendous strength, Briggs has made a career out of putting men on the canvas. Of his fifty one victories, he has won forty five of them by knock out. At 88%, that puts him in the knockout elite.

One such KO won him a world heavyweight title. In 2006, he came up against Belarus fighter Sergei Liakhovich. The plucky Belarus fighter took Briggs all the way to the twelfth round before eventually being stopped by a furious right hand thrown by Briggs. After being awarded the WBO heavyweight title, Briggs kept it for just under seven months, losing his first defence against Sultan Ibragimov (22-1-1 17KO's). He decided to rest for a couple of years, eventually returning to the ring in 2009. Four fights later he met with Klitschko, was given a mauling by Dr. Ironfist, and here we are today.

He Still Has The Fire

He certainly seems to have something burning underneath him. The rhetoric of his blog is mainly a lament to him being in the ring, as well as an impassioned reasoning for his decision to comeback:

"Boxing is in my blood and it’s in my nature, I’ve been fighting all of my life in and out of the ring, whether it was physically or mentally, to survive and because of where I came from. I have missed the adrenalin."

Briggs should be admired for his motives. Boxing has been the biggest part of his life since his debut in 1992, and letting go of the glory, not to mention the structured routine it gave him, had to be difficult. The trouble is, he will have an even harder job getting anywhere with this comeback.

The Klitschkos are his age, but they are a lot better than Briggs. The fighters on the outskirts of the top-tier, such as Tyson Fury, are young and have the fire of ambition behind them. Briggs falls into the middle; a fighter who is advancing in years, still retains some motivation and skill, but ultimately not enough to win a world title.

Do you think Briggs could actually do it? Let me know what your opinions are with a comment.