Former heavyweight champion Evander Holyfield was barred from fighting in New York by the state's athletic commission because of "poor performance and diminished skills" in recent fights.

The three-member commission decided unanimously to suspend Holyfield's boxing license indefinitely after consultations with its chief medical officer, chairman Ron Stevens said in a telephone interview.

The commission had placed Holyfield on an indefinite medical suspension in November, three days after he lost a unanimous 12-round decision to Larry Donald at Madison Square Garden. Holyfield, 42, has had two wins in his last nine fights.

While placing Holyfield on administrative suspension, the commission yesterday lifted the medical ban that prevented him from fighting in other states.

The administrative suspension means Holyfield can't be licensed to fight in New York. Other states are under no obligation to honor New York's ban, Stevens said.

Holyfield, the only four-time heavyweight champion, says he wants to win the title for a fifth time. His record is 38-8, with two draws and 25 knockouts.

Holyfield's manager, Alex Krys, told the New York Daily News that he's looking to set up a match in Europe for the fighter.

-- From News Services