The greatest heavyweight of all time?

Discussion in 'Boxing' started by GiovaniMarcon, Mar 19, 2008.

  1. GiovaniMarcon

    GiovaniMarcon Mentor

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    Who is the greatest heavyweight boxer of all time?

    Most sports columnists would say Clay/Ali.

    Do you agree?

    If not, who do you pick, and what's your rationale?

    I say Jim Jeffries.

    He got his a$$ kicked by Jack Johnson, but then again, Jeffries by this time was an old man coming off retirement. It would have been a miracle had he won (though of course white America would dearly have loved the victory).

    The fact that a stuffed shirt like Jess Willard beat an excellent boxer like Johnson when Johnson himself was an old fart tells a strong tale about what happens when a boxer is past his prime.

    That being said, I think a prime Jeffries versus a prime Johnson would have been a much more even match, and I pick Jeffries to win it, not because he's white, but just because I think he's better.

    I also think if Ali tried to pull some fancy trash-talk on Jeffries in the ring, Jeffries would have buried his entire arm inside Ali's chest and ripped his heart out for acting like a moron.

    Jeffries also has the size and height to be a devastating force even in today's fight game.

    If Jeffries were black, he wouldn't be considered a villain by books and magazines.


    If people know of him today, it's because he's the "racist" who got beaten by Johnson.

    Just like Schmeling is the "racist" who got beaten by Louis.
     
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  3. Charles Martel

    Charles Martel Hall of Famer

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    The greatest heavyweight was Jim Jeffries or Rocky Marciano, or perhaps Jack Dempsey or John L Sullivan. Hard to say for certain...

    It's easier to choose the all time best in other weight divisions! The greatest light heavyweight was easily Gene Tunney, the greatest middleweight was Harry Greb, and the greatest featherweight was Willie Pep.
     
  4. Maple Leaf

    Maple Leaf Mentor

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    I have spent a long time thinking about this very question and what I have to say would fill a book but one point stands out the most and I will explain it.

    Boxing is a sport where the competitors are divided weight class because weight is an advantage. In every weight class, the size of the fighter is an advantage as well and bigger fighters are always losing weight before fights so that they can have a size advantage over their opponents. Reach, height, and stride are all advantages as well and greater amounts in each help a fighter win. These facts are irrefutable, period.

    So...?

    When considering which heavyweight would be most likely to gain the most wins versus all of the others (in other words the greatest) size matters. The biggest of the best need only apply. And skills before 1920 just do not cut it so forget Jefferies, Sullivan, and Johnson. As well, cruiserweights like Dempsey, Louis, Marciano, and Frazier are all out. That leaves Ali, Foreman, Holmes, Lewis, and Vitali Klitschko. Wladimir Klitschko has not retired yet so he is left off the list: otherwise he would be.

    Ali had trouble with 230lb club fighters so he is immediately scratched. The younger version of Foreman lost his marbles, unravelled when he had a champions' chance; the older version was too slow. Holmes had an authentic dynamite jab but won mostly through grit, determination, and atrition, and he too struggled against bigger men. That really only leaves Lewis and V. Klitschko -for now. These two fought, Lewis was beaten, but won on a cut rule. Had they fought again Vitali had a coffin waiting for Lewis and Lewis knew it so he retired. But Lewis was big and skilled and he would probably have beaten all of the other heavyweights more than they would have beaten him with one exception: Vitali Klitschko.

    With Vitali's skills and power and his unmatched size (6',8" and 250lbs.) he simply would be too much for the smaller black men to handle. This Russian bear simply had too much skill, too much size, and no fear of anyone. V.K. is the tournament winner: the all time greatest heavyweight.
     
  5. GiovaniMarcon

    GiovaniMarcon Mentor

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    I see your position, however it must be pointed out that size isn't always as much of an advantage as it's cracked up to be. Let's not forget how the 6'1", 180 lb. Jack Dempsey made hamburger out of 6',7" Jess Willard.

    Let's also not forget how 6'2" Joe Louis demolished 6'7" Primo Carnera.

    Lennox Lewis is a decent albeit incredibly boring boxer. His jab will prove troubling but with an aggressive, fearless opponent with a good chin (think Dempsey, Marciano, Joe Louis) would tear him a new corn chute.

    He has proven vulnerable to medium-sized also-rans like Hasim Rahman. His chin and heart have always been suspect.

    As far as Vitali goes, I have no problem accepting his credentials as one of the finest heavies of the last 30 years (though hardly anyone outside of boxing fandom knows of him). Fundamentally he's better than Lewis but I think a ferocious fighter like Mike Tyson circa 1987 might have had his number, but then again, maybe Vitali could have laid him out just like Lewis did earlier this decade.

    It should also be pointed out that Rocky Marciano was dismissed as being too small to be heavyweight champion, and yet he fought everyone put in front of him and took them all out one by one.

    I think if he were put in front of someone like Shannon Briggs, Briggs would be riding the mat sooner or later before the fifteenth bell (if they still fought fifteen rounders).

    I think you might just be right about V.K. being the best ever for now, but the sports media would probably never accept that because it's a given that the greatest ever must be Ali (because that's the standard, accepted, and trendy answer) or some other black.
     
  6. Guest

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    It great to speculate, but VK needs a larger body of work. If he beats Peter and defends it a couple of times and or consoladates it, then I would be comfortable in even mentioning him as an all time great. But right now he only ranks as a possible with the potential to be the All Time Great HW. Come on guys.
     
  7. Van_Slyke_CF

    Van_Slyke_CF Mentor

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    When we talk about size differences between more recent heavyweights andmost of the best heavies many decades ago, is it really fair to discount the latter because they might have weighed 185-205 or so, instead of the seemingly standard 225-250 or more today? How do we know that the same greats of so long agowouldn`t have measured up to many of the best now with the same weight training,chemical substances and other things?


    The same sort of thing applies to football players like O and D linemen, for example. We can`t set aside the best of long ago who weighed, say, 230-260 simply because it seems a given that linemen have to be close to or over 300 lbs. these days, especially on the offensiveside of the ball.


    Times change, people change, the rules change, training methods change....


    I think we should always be careful when comparing different generations of players in sports.
     
  8. whiteathlete33

    whiteathlete33 Hall of Famer

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    Good point van slyke. There is a big size difference in todays heavyweights from yesterdays so it is really hard to compare. Its like comparing apples to oranges. Marciano was the best ever hands down. Had Marciano been black he would have been considered the greatest boxer of all time, not Ali.Edited by: whiteathlete33
     
  9. GiovaniMarcon

    GiovaniMarcon Mentor

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    this isn't related, but to go along with what you're saying, I also think if Wladimir Klitschko were black the sports media would make sure everyone in the world knew about him.

    As it is, the average Moe on the street still thinks boxing is dominated by Mike Tyson types, and that's the way Sports Illustrated likes it.

    I can't help but feel that people don't accept Klitschko for the sole purpose that he's a white man who so clearly has demonstrated on many occasions that he is worlds better than the best black boxers right now. They think it's some kind of trick, scam, or that boxing sucks so badly right now that a white wimp really could eek out a title.
     
  10. Charles Martel

    Charles Martel Hall of Famer

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    Giovani, the idea that black men can fight better than white men is what a certain group of people who own and control most of the media want everyone to believe.

    If a young white guy thinks black men are unbeatable, and if a young black man believes he can beat any white guy, then the black men will have no fear of taking the white mens' women!

    The media has many white guys brainwashed into hating themselves, and believing they are weak and inferior to blacks. Most of the anti-white regular posters on other boxing forums are actually self-hating white men, "wiggers" who wish they were black!

    You're right, if Wlad were black, he'd be given a lot of positive attention by the media. But because the Chosen Ones who own and control most of the media don't want young white men to believe they might be able to fight well enough to defend themselves against black men, the media either ignores Wlad or discredits him.Edited by: JD1986
     
  11. Guest

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    JD1986, I pondered your last post considerably. What you state has some truth. But if it is to be take as whole truth then the white people in this country have alot to be worried about.

    The people who control all media are white people with a large group of jewish interlopers. This means the enemy is within, and being assisted by these interlopers. Second, blacks don't take white women, the white trader females gladly go with these negros.

    What your post means is that white people and their misguideness are our worst enemy! I hope we as a people WTF up and stop the bleeding.

    As far as the greatest HW fighter, I would have to say based on record, length of rein, opponents and the way they defeated them it would be a tie between Joe Louis and Rocky Mariciano.
     
  12. Maple Leaf

    Maple Leaf Mentor

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    Some of you gentlemen have perhaps overlooked some points:

    The word "great" has to mean something specific if it is to have any meaning at all. Great could mean things like: longest reign, most media impact, name recognition, impact on sport, concensus amongst professional writers, etc. But I think all of that stuff fails. It seems to me the only thing "great" can mean is "best". That is what most people think of when the word "greatest" is used. It follows that one would ask: "What is specific about best?" And it seems to me that "best" has to be thought of as: the fighter that would win the most fights had he fought all of the others on the list. In other words, a list of all of the champions is made, have them all fight each other during the course of their careers, and the fighter with the most wins is the best.

    The list is easy to make as it is already done if we follow the lineage of the champions. By process of elimination the list may be shortened as I did in a post above.

    Champions of past decades may be heavier had they fought today but they certainly would not be bigger or taller men. Past champions could have put on muscle but they could not add to their height nor to the thickness or their frames: their hands could not get bigger nor could they wear a bigger shoe. So, as much as we do not want to, we have to scratch smaller men like Marciano -who was only 5,10"- from the list. That is just the way it is. As I stated in a post above, boxing is a sport for weight classes, and size is a factor. That is just the way it is. Like we say in Canada: "The way she goes boy." A smaller man can win sometimes but always his size becomes a factor and the bigger men will wear him down. There is just no way out of the equation.

    I put Vitali Klitschko on the list because he is retired; had he not been I would have taken him off the list until he was. We already know how good he is as he already fought an all time great in Lennox Lewis.

    The top biggest of the best must be Ali, Foreman, Holmes, Lewis, and V. Klitschko. There are no others. These fighters are not so far removed from one another in time that we can say the sport has evolved to a point where past skills are no longer viable. Jack Johnson's skills are gimmecky today and he was too small. Joe Louis was too small. Dempsey was too small. It is not that smaller men could not win sometimes like Dempsey did, but that they could not consistently beat bigger men like Holyfield found out.

    V.K. beats Ali while Ali leans on the ropes; V.K. beats Holmes because Holmes does not have the power to keep him off; V.K. gets into a slug-fest with Foreman like Lyle did but V.K. has the better chin and outlasts
    him; V.K. already beat Lewis' spirit and in the rematch Lewis is not so lucky to win by cut and is clobbered in his own corner in a late round knockout.

    So, there you have it. Prove to me that a smaller man can consistently beat all of the bigger men above him and you will have refuted history. Thank you for taking the time to read this, gentlemen, and if you have a better arguement I am certainly reading it. Good Luck.
     
  13. Charles Martel

    Charles Martel Hall of Famer

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    White people do have a lot to be worried about.

    No, the media is about 96% owned and controlled by the Chosen Ones, and they occupy almost all the key positions. Most movie and TV producers and screen writers have been from the Chosen for several decades now. They are assisted by a larger group of whites. Whenever you watched a movie back in the 60s and 70s that portrayed white men as evil racists, the screenwriter and producer were from the Chosen Ones. Nowadays, some brainwashed white people are doing it to themselves!

    White women wouldn't normally choose black men over white men - they didn't before 1960 (unless in fiction!). However, females of virtually all animal species tend to mate with the stronger males, and human females are no exception. If there is a perception that blacks are able to fight better than white men, then some women will instinctively gravitate toward them. There is also the myth that black men are better endowed, created by the Chosen Ones through the media back in the 60s and 70s.

    If the media were to pay more positive attention to Wladimir Klitschko, Kelly Pavlik, and other white fighters, it might mean some casual female observers would be converted from their belief that black men can fight better! It might also mean some white men would have more confidence in certain situations when confronted by black men (most women find male confidence attractive).

    Definitely!

    We have been brainwashed by TV programs, movies and sports broadcasts into having an unrealistically negative opinion of ourselves as white people. Check and see who the screenwriters and producers of the most anti-white movies and TV broadcasts are! Keep on researching this for a few months, and eventually you'll come to realize who the creators of the caste system are and why it's been happening. But, unfortunately, many misguided, self-hating white people are going along with it and repeating it, and by doing so may be contributing to the eventual extinction of their own race. Edited by: JD1986
     
  14. Sean

    Sean Mentor

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    Marciano, Dempsey, Jeffries could all be considered the best of all time. In fact, that is the order of my top 3 heavyweights.
     
  15. DixieDestroyer

    DixieDestroyer Hall of Famer

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