All fighters start somewhere, whether they were Olympic gold medalists or kids from the barrio gyms in Mexico.
After a successful amateur career, Mikkel Kessler made his professional boxing debut on March 20, 1998, against Kelly Mays, in Aarhus, Denmark. Kessler was 19 years old. Mays was 34, from Louisville, 6-0 as a pro with five knockouts and two no-contests. It was his first, and last, trip overseas.
This was the first of six consecutive losses for Mays, who last fought in 2000. It was the first of Kessler's 39 straight wins, and the first of 29 knockouts.
Here is the young Mikkel Kessler, weighing in at 152 pounds, in his pro debut.