The first fight between defending champion Dwight Qawi and challenger Evander Holyfield may have been the best cruiserweight bout since the inception of that bastard division. That was back when championship matches were REAL fights that were scheduled for 15 rounds. It was a brutal give and take affair. Dwight applied constant pressure while Evander boxed in controlled flurries. The fight had several changes in momentum and was fought at a furious pace. For sustained action it was one of the best fights I've ever seen at ANY weight ! Qawi deserved his recent induction into the Hall Of Fame. His only setbacks during his championship prime were to all time greats Michael Spinks at 175 and Holyfield at cruiser.
Toney-Jirov was a great fight but to me a distant second to Qawi-Holyfield I. First of all it only went twelve rounds. Secondly, there were lulls in the action when Toney would go to the ropes for a breather. Nevertheless there was a lot of leather thrown throughout most of the match. Jirov was always coming forward attacking Toney's body. James in return put on a counterpunching clinic that led to his victory over a dead game Jirov.
To me the biggest upset in a cruiserweight title fight was when S.T.Gordon bombed out a shell shocked defending champion Carlos DeLeon in two rounds. It was a massacre. When they met again a more on the ball DeLeon handled Gordon easily.
DeLeon is one of top five cruiserweights since the division was created.