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Bear Hugger
FileBear Hugger.png
Nickname(s) Canadian Bear Hugger
Rated at 440 lbs. (200 kg)
Height 6' 3" (190 cm)
Nationality Canadian
Age 32
From Salmon Arm, BC, Canada
Stance Southpaw1,2
First appearance Super Punch-Out!! (1985)
Boxing record
Rank Champion of Canada1
#2 Minor Circuit 2
#2 Major Circuit3
Total fights 29
Wins 17
Wins by KO 10
Losses 12

Bear Hugger (ベア・ハッガー Bea Haggā) is a recurring opponent who first appeared in the arcade version of Super Punch-Out!!. His appearance resembles a Canadian lumberjack; however, with the lack of an undershirt, his appearance also resembles a hillbilly. His signature move is called the "Bear Hug."


Super Punch-Out!! (1984)[]

Canadian Bear Hugger
Arcade bear hugger.gif
Nationality Canadian
Boxing record
Rank Champion of Canada
F01 - bear hugger.png

Bear Hugger first appeared in the Super Punch-Out!! arcade and is referred to by the referee as "Canadian Bear Hugger". He is immune to body blows thanks to his enormous belly and can only be defeated with face punches. If the player attempts to body blow him, he sticks his tongue out to taunt them. When knocked down, he stands up to do his signature move. This is a two-handed smash that always knocks down his opponent with one hit. To avoid this move, players must duck to avoid it. He'll attack very little and all his attacks are easy to avoid, likely being used as a practice opponent so that the player can learn how to attack and avoid attacks.

Super Punch-Out!! (1994)[]

Bear Hugger
Snes bear hugger.gif
Rated at 440 lbs. (200 kg)
Nationality Canadian
Age 32
From Saskatoon, Saskatchewan
Boxing record
Rank #2 Minor Circuit
Total fights 29
Wins 17
Losses 12

He returned in Super Punch-Out!! for the SNES as the second opponent of the Minor Circuit. In this game, his stomach becomes vulnerable to hooks when he taunts the player during a fight. He also often does his two-handed smash when his opponent tries to punch him in the face. This two-handed smash no longer does one-hit knock downs to his opponent, but is still a dangerous attack. His palette swap is Mad Clown.

His voice lines are provided by Charles Martinet in this game.


  • Jab: Bear Hugger does a jab. Can be evaded any way except low blocking.
  • Hook: Bear Hugger does a hook. Cannot be low blocked.
  • Two- Handed Smash: Bear Hugger lifts his arms and closes them in on the player. Used after he blocks a jab. This attack has to be ducked.
  • Taunt: Bear Hugger points at his stomach. Body blow him for a stun.
  • "Go! Attack him now!": When his cornerman says this, Bear Hugger goes to the back of the ring, opens his arms and walks to the center. In this state, he will do eight punches before returning to normal.

Dizzy KD:

He will make the same face as when he is attacked. He will move to the back of the ring, then forward. Punch him as he is coming to the center.

Punch-Out!! (2009)[]

Bear Hugger
Rated at 440 lbs. (200 kg)
Height 6'3"
Nationality Canadian
Age 32
From Salmon Arm, BC, Canada
Boxing record
Rank #2 Major Circuit
Total fights 29
Wins 17
Wins by KO 10
Losses 12

Bear Hugger appears in Punch-Out!! for the Wii and is #2 in the Major Circuit, much higher ranked than in the previous games. In his montage, it is revealed that Bear Hugger was once an ordinary Canadian lumberjack who loved to eat big breakfasts, drink maple syrup, and chop down big trees. One day, a big grizzly bear suddenly appeared, roaring at Bear Hugger and scaring him. Surprisingly, the bear was actually friendly and he became friends with Bear Hugger, even teaching him how to fight like a bear. He is voiced by Richard Newman in this game.

Salmon fly off his face when the player hits him, then change to a shower of maple leaves when TKO'd. When knocked down with a face punch, he yells "Timber!" (if a hook is used to knock him down, he will just gag). If you lose to him, he will scratch his back against the ropes and sigh in happiness.

In this game, Bear Hugger is affected by hooks (but only jabs can initiate stuns) and his two handed smash (now called the Bear Hug) deals higher damage than in Super Punch-Out!! (about 1/2). A Star Punch during any of his attacks will instantly knock him down, and you can counter every attack for a star. Unlike the other opponents, if the player avoids any of his attacks while they have no hearts, he'll quickly get back to his defense stance after he misses the punch, leaving them with a stricter timing window to hit him after avoiding the attack.


Star Opportunities:

  • Jab him when he flashes yellow when he sticks his tongue out on his first taunt.
  • Counter his Left Hook.
  • Counter his Overhead Smash.
  • Counter his Bear Hug.
  • Hit him when stomach is at the center when he sticks his belly out on his second taunt.

Instant Knockdowns:

  • Throw a star punch while Bear Hugger has his tongue stuck out on his first taunt.
  • Counter the Left Hook with a Star Punch while Bear Hugger moves his arm back. (Note that the window of time in which to do this is incredibly small)
  • Counter the Overhead Smash with a Star Punch when Bear Hugger is about to lower his arm.
  • Counter the Bear Hug with a Star Punch when Bear Hugger goes "Hug!?".
  • Counter the second taunt with a star punch when Bear Hugger's belly is about to reach the center.


  • Taunt: Bear Hugger sticks his tongue out and wiggles it at you. Jab him a second after he starts for a star.
  • Left Hook: A quick left hook. Can be dodged left or ducked.
  • Overhead Smash: A slightly delayed overhead smash that comes from Bear Hugger's right hand. Can be dodged to either side.
  • Bear Hug: Bear Hugger's signature move, similar to the earclap that King Hippo does and used after some of his health is gone. He steps back and shouts "NEED A HUG?!!?" before giving Mac an earclap, similar to King Hippo's squeeze attack. This attack can not be dodged; it must be ducked or countered.
  • "Let's Dance!" Taunt: Used after his first knockdown. Bear Hugger steps back and shouts "Nyuk-nyuk! Let's dance!!", and swings his large belly around. Hook him when his stomach is closest to Mac for a star.

Six Punch TKO

  1. Throw a jab on his first taunt.
  2. Use this star punch to counter an attack.
  3. Counter a punch.
  4. Throw your star to counter an attack.
  5. Counter a punch.
  6. Throw your star to counter an attack and win.

Stun Limits:

  • His Hook (if dodged): 5
  • His Overhead Smash (if dodged left): 4
  • His Overhead Smash (if dodged right): 5
  • His Hook (if ducked): 4
  • His Bear Hug: 7

Title Defense Mode[]

Bear Hugger
Rated at 440 lbs. (200 kg)
Height 6'3"
Nationality Canadian
Age 32
From Salmon Arm, BC, Canada
Boxing record
Rank Challenger (#3 Major Circuit)
Total fights 30
Wins 17
Wins by KO 10
Losses 13

Bear Hugger returned in Title Defense Mode to win the champion's belt from Little Mac. He wears a toque (a type of hat commonly worn in Canada in winter) this time and is accompanied by a boxing squirrel. He also has a couple of new attacks and a completely new attack scheme, but still retains his old moves. His squirrel acts as a warning to when Bear Hugger is either delaying an attack or going to fake an attack.

Bear Hugger also will only take 2 attacks unless he gets Star Punched when stunned after the first punch, at which point he is actually stunned, allowing Mac to land some hits on Bear Hugger. The amount of punches Mac can land depends on whether he used a One-Star Punch or a Two-Star Punch. A One-Star punch will allow 6 hits while a Two-Star Punch allows 10 hits; a Three-Star Punch gives an Instant Knockdown. Stars fly off both Bear Hugger's head and the squirrel's head when stunned. If Little Mac uses a Star Punch when Bear Hugger is stunned, the squirrel disappears, but the stars circling around Bear Hugger's head will turn into salmon. After the first knockdown, he will use a delayed bear hug that is also a little stronger than the ordinary bear hug and has a much stricter window to counter-punch for a star. These two moves can be faked later on in the combat (first knockdown for the normal Bear Hug, second for the delayed Bear Hug). A three star uppercut will automatically knock Bear Hugger down if he is stunned, no matter how much health he has left. If the player knocks him down in TD, the squirrel will jump up and down on his belly to wake him up, and when Bear Hugger is about to get up, the squirrel retreats.

If you lose to the TD version of him, he will celebrate, throw his hat up to reveal the squirrel, then he kisses the squirrel.

Note that Bear Hugger TD will NEVER be hit by an unstunned Star Punch, unless you dodge an attack and then use one or use one to counter an attack. Another way is to use the Star Punch to duck under any of his Bear Hugs, which will not only prevent Mac from getting hit, but the Star Punch will then hit Bear Hugger. Also, if Mac hits Bear Hugger while he taunts him after the first knockdown, this will no longer leave him open, but knocks him back. Note that the player should not allow the fight to go on for too long as, after the first knockdown, his attack pattern will have many different paths it can take. Using the Instant Knockdown trick will allow you to win more easily.

Glitch: If you use an uppercut right before the taunt, he will proceed to taunt, but he will also dodge it, and the squirrel will be stuck in a T pose. When the player's punch gets blocked, when Bear Hugger gets stunned, or when he does a delayed attack, the squirrel turns back to normal.

Star Opportunities:

  • Counter his Overhead Smash.
  • Counter his Delayed Overhead Smash when he says "ya!".
  • Jab him on his "Hat Trick" taunt.
  • Counter his Left Hook.
  • Counter his Delayed Left Hook.
  • Counter his Bear Hug.
  • Counter his Catch And Release Hug when he is about to move forward.
  • Counter his Fake Bear Hug when he is about to say "Fooled Ya!".
  • Counter his Fake Catch And Release Hug when he is about to laugh.

Instant Knockdown:

  • Throw any Three-Star Punch when Bear Hugger is stunned. Regardless of how much health Bear Hugger has, he will instantly get knocked down. It is very crucial that you make due with this trick due to Bear Hugger's attack pattern having a lot more paths.


  • Taunt: Bear Hugger lifts up his toque and shouts "Hat trick!". Jab him for a star. Before his first knockdown, he will also be stunned for one more punch. After his first knockdown, he will be knocked back.
  • Left Hook: A faster, stronger version of his Contender hook.
  • Delayed Left Hook: A delayed version of his Left Hook. Used after knockdown 1. To tell which hook is being used, look at Bear Hugger's hat; if his squirrel has popped out, it's the delayed version. Another way to tell is that in the delayed version, Bear Hugger does not grunt immediately.
  • Overhead: Like in Contender but faster.
  • Delayed Overhead: A much more delayed version of the Overhead. Bear Hugger yells out "I'm gonna stump ya!" before throwing the punch. His squirrel also pops out of his hat.
  • Bear Hug: The same as his Contender Bear Hug. Bear Hugger sometimes fakes this move after the first knockdown; if his squirrel pops out of his hat, it's a fake.
  • Catch and Release Bear Hug: A delayed version of the Bear Hug, used after the first knockdown. Yells "Catch and release!" Like the not delayed version, this move can also be faked after knockdown 2. The way to tell if it's faked is also the same.

Stun Limits:

  • Star Punch (1): 6
  • Star Punch (2): 10
  • Attempting A Normal Stun: 2

Exhibition Challenges[]


  1. Win the fight and evade EVERY Bear Hug!
  2. TKO Bear Hugger in Round 1.
  3. Find 5 different ways to earn Stars.

Title Defense:

  1. Land a One-Star, Two-Star, and Three-Star Punch!
  2. Win the fight without dodging or ducking ANY fake Bear Hug.
  3. Defeat Bear Hugger and NEVER duck!

Rule Infractions[]

As per the unified rules of boxing established by the Association of Boxing Commissions and Combat Sports:

  • His overalls go below his knees, which is not allowed.
  • Instead of boxing shorts, he wears overalls.
  • Instead of boxing shoes or boxing boots, he wears construction boots.
  • The red cloth he has in his pocket counts as an illegal accessory.
  • While he would be allow to wear his toque in Contender as major league boxing is equivalent to amateur boxing, he only wears it in Title Defense Mode and in Title Defense Mode he's in World A (the Major Circuit version of the World Circuit.) Professional boxing don't allow boxers to wear headgear during the match as their classed as being unprofessional.
    • Even if he did wear it in Contender only, it is unstable, evidenced by it leaving his head when his squirrel hidden in the toque moves during the fight, meaning his toque isn't approvable.
  • He dons a large beard. In boxing, the fighters must have either no facial hair, cleanly shave it, a decent laired beard or have a short, well-groomed mustache, as a large beard serves as a cushion to the wearer's jaw.
  • During intermission, he drinks maple syrup. Only water is allowed to be consumed during intermission.
    • After finishing his drink in his pre-round animation in Contender, he burps loudly, which is an action that is unsportsmanlike in boxing unless it's done by accident or the boxer apologises.
  • He sleeps during corner breaks and taunts during matches, which is seen as disrespectful as the boxer isn't taking the match seriously.
  • During Title Defense, he brings a squirrel into the ring. This breaks several rules:
    • Only the boxers and the referee are allowed in the ring.
    • The squirrel helps Bear Hugger stand back up after being knocked down and tries to distract Little Mac. Tag-teaming is illegal in boxing.
    • Bringing an animal to an area where it is likely to be injured could also be considered animal abuse or neglect.
  • Bear Hugger's moves known as the "Bear Hug" & "Catching and Release" are both ear clap moves. Ear clap attacks are not allowed.
  • In Title Defense mode, when Bear Hugger gets hit with a star punch, he does a spin-around to sell it. He briefly shows his back for a split second, this counts as throwing the match.

Bear Hugger has 15 infractions.



Super Punch-Out!! (SNES)

  • "Watch out! I am a killer - I am the Bear Hugger!" (first match)
  • "You've come back for another spanking, eh?" (rematch)
  • ”I’ve heard someone can beat me in 17 seconds.” (endgame)
  • "Ow!" (after being hit by Mac)
  • "BONG....." (after being knocked down by Mac)
  • "Go! Attack him now!" (his cornerman, telling him to go offensive)

Punch-Out!! (Wii)

  • "Hruh! Hruh! Ahahahahaha!" (when you select him in Contender)
  • "Catch and Release!" (before performing his delayed Bear Hug)
  • "Hoser!" (after unsuccessful overhead)
  • "She scores!" (after performing successful hook)
  • "I like raw fish. (stomach growling) *snores*" (during Contender intermission)
  • "I'm a hugger, not a fighter. Take off, eh?" (during Title Defense intermission)
  • "I'm gonna stump ya!" (Delayed Overhead)
  • "Hat Trick!" (Title Defense taunt)
  • "Hey hoser! I'm gonna hit you so hard, you're gonna see Northern Lights, eh? *laughs*" (during Title Defense intermission)
  • (whilst trying to find the squirrel) "Hmmm, let's see now. I can't start until I find my little – wait, I hear him. I hear him, where are you? Where are... There you are you crazy little--! Ahahahahaha!" (before TD match)
  • "Need a hug?!" (before the Bear Hug)
  • (whist drinking syrup) "Now I have the strength *grunt* of a bear!" *slurp* "Oh that's good, yeah, mm-hmm." (during Contender intermission)
  • "Salmon Arm!" (after performing successful hook)
  • "Sockeye! (after performing successful hook)
  • "Timber!" (when knocked down with a jab)
  • "Ah, I put the hat on, and... oh! *Squirrel pokes his tail in front of his eyes* Now, get your tail outta my eyes! How can I fight like that?" (Title Defense, before a new round)
  • "Need a... FOOLED ya!" (false Bear Hug in title defense)
  • "Catch and... UH-UH!" (false delayed Bear Hug in Title Defense)
  • "Hyu-huck! Let's dance! Huh!" (Contender mode taunt)
  • ”DOH?!” (After ducking bear hug in Contender)
  • "Bully!" (After ducking bear hug in Title Defense)
  • "Oh no..." (About to get hit by a star punch)

Doc Louis Tips:

  • "Hey, Mac baby, listen up! This kid loves to Bear hug! He can't hug you if he can't catch you! Keep out of his way!"
  • "Check it out, son. This sucka's got a tricky hook. If you dodge the wrong way, you're gonna get hit."
  • "Free the grizzly in him, Mac. Save your stars, and hammer this sucka home!"
  • "Hey, Mac baby. Bear Hugger's quite the bush man. Remember, yell "TIMBER!", and knock this sucka down, baby, knock him down!"
  • "I know one thing, baby. Playing dare with this bear won't work. Nuh-uh! You gotta knock him out and send him back to the wild!"
  • "Let's go, Mac baby! Rock this sucka so hard you put him, and his squirrel, into hibernation!"
  • "Ok Mac, listen up. Normal attacks are not gonna faze this big bear. You gotta find an opening and unleash all your power, got it?"
  • Knock this sucka back to the Rockies! Make him remember the last time he fought Little Mac!
  • "Sometimes you get the bear, sometimes the bear gets lucky. Let's get the bear, Mac baby, let's get him."
  • "Remember, Mac! Bear Hugger's got a tricky hook! Be careful the way you dodge! Be careful, son!"
  • "Alright, alright, alright! I ain't no sissy, but those Canadian squirrels? Those bushy-tailed rats scare me, son!"


  • His KO animation in Contender is different than in Title Defense, with his squirrel getting knocked off his hat and flying into the audience.
  • In Punch Out!! (Wii), when Bear Hugger is knocked down, the sound of a falling tree can be heard.
  • Bear Hugger was originally going to be in Mike Tyson's Punch-Out!!, but due to the hardware of the NES, King Hippo was decided to take his place instead.
  • King Hippo shares a similar fighting style to him, for they are both obese boxers who share similar moves. However, one main difference is that if Bear Hugger is knocked down, he will try and get up again.
  • Bear Hugger is one of three bald boxers with facial hair. Soda Popinski and Bald Bull are the other two.
  • In Super Punch-Out!! (SNES), Bear Hugger hails from Saskatoon, Saskatchewan. In Punch-Out!! (Wii), his hometown was changed to Salmon Arm, British Columbia.
  • In Super Punch-Out!! (SNES), the highest score against Bear Hugger is 68,020 by rdrunner0077, with only 16 milliseconds to spare.
  • In Super Punch-Out!! (SNES), the perfect time against Bear Hugger is 0'12"92 in the NTSC version, first achieved by zallard1, and 0'12"33 in the PAL version, first achieved by Lixunis, proving that he can be beaten in under 17 seconds.
  • In Super Punch-Out!! (SNES), the color of the glint of his teeth in his portrait does not match the the color of the glint on his teeth in the boxing ring.
  • In Title Defense, no matter how the player tries to knock him out, whether it be by a hook, countering an attack/taunt, or stunning him, he will always show the special KO animation, which makes him one of the few opponents to always get a special KO animation when TKO'd or KO'd from enough knockdowns.
  • Bear Hugger may be lighter than King Hippo since he can get up after being knocked down while King Hippo only needs to be knocked down once. However, King Hippo's weight is unknown, so this cannot be confirmed using in-game information.
  • Bear Hugger appears to be left-handed, primarily because of his boxing stance is common for left-handed people. However, he is seen in the Wii version using an Orthodox (right-handed) stance, and holding jugs of maple syrup with his right hand. It's also possible he's ambidextrous and his left hand is his dominant hand.
  • In Punch-Out!! (Wii), Bear Hugger invokes many Canadian stereotypes. The list includes wearing a toque, being fond of maple syrup, being used to bears, the love of fish, enjoying hockey, saying "eh," and being a lumberjack.
  • Bear Hugger appears in Frank Bruno's Boxing under the name "Canadian Crusher."
  • Bear Hugger & Soda Popinski are the only boxers in Punch-Out!! (Wii) to not have an instant-knockout opportunity in Contender or Title Defense Mode.
  • Bear Hugger is one of the only two non-American boxers in Punch-Out!! (Wii) to speak English, the other one being Aran Ryan.
Punch-Out!! characters
Punch-Out!! (1984) Challenger · Glass Joe · Piston Hurricane · Bald Bull · Kid Quick · Pizza Pasta · Mr. Sandman
Super Punch-Out!! (1985) Challenger · Bear Hugger · Dragon Chan · Vodka Drunkenski · Great Tiger · Super Macho Man
Arm Wrestling Challenger · Texas Mac · Kabuki · Mask X · Alice & Ape III · Frank Jr.
Punch-Out!! (1987) Little Mac · Doc Louis · Glass Joe · Von Kaiser · Piston Honda · Don Flamenco · King Hippo · Great Tiger · Bald Bull · Soda Popinski · Mr. Sandman · Super Macho Man · Mike Tyson/Mr. Dream
Super Punch-Out!! (1994) Little Mac · Gabby Jay · Bear Hugger · Piston Hurricane · Bald Bull · Bob Charlie · Dragon Chan · Masked Muscle · Mr. Sandman · Aran Ryan · Heike Kagero · Mad Clown · Super Macho Man · Narcis Prince · Hoy Quarlow · Rick Bruiser · Nick Bruiser
Punch-Out!! (2009) Little Mac · Doc Louis · Glass Joe · Von Kaiser · Disco Kid · King Hippo · Piston Hondo · Bear Hugger · Great Tiger · Don Flamenco · Aran Ryan · Soda Popinski · Bald Bull · Super Macho Man · Mr. Sandman · Donkey Kong