Wladimir Klitschko Would’ve Been A Title Threat In Any Era

He really was a poor man’s Klitschko, and he stood right in front of Wladimir with his head straight up and offered little or no movement. Yes, that’s basically the strategy the slower-handed Kubrat Pulev 20-1 (11) attempted to beat the best heavyweight in the world, Wladimir Klitschko 63-3 (53), with this past weekend.

Pulev was every bit as crude stylistically as most perceived him to be. He was a sitting duck for Klitschko’s right hands and left hooks. Pulev was dropped in the first round by a lead left-hook that Wladimir sneaked in around Kubrat’s right hand. Pulev was visibly hurt, was dropped again and barely made it out of the first round. By the fifth round he was being battered and was stopped via a single lead left hook to the chin. But give Pulev credit for trying and not fighting just to survive. He was just out-gunned by a markedly better and more complete fighter.

Pulev is a very big man and attempted to manhandle and rough up Klitschko, however Wladimir answered back. In this fight we saw for one of the few times how athletic Wladimir is for such a big man. Starting in the second round, Klitschko sensed his superior advantage in hand-speed and laid back some and pot-shotted Pulev and usually beat him to the punch. It was painfully obvious early on that Klitschko did everything better in the ring than Pulev that one fighter can do over another. He had a better and more imaginative offense, he was quicker in getting off, and once he sensed Pulev had no defense for his lead left hook to the chin, he disguised it beautifully and nailed Pulev almost anytime he cut loose with it.

It was easy to glean that Klitschko was clearly a grade above not just Pulev, but any other heavyweight in the world. You can try all you want to make a case for Tyson Fury, Bermane Stiverne and Deontay Wilder but forget about it. Fury would get pummeled like Pulev, maybe even more so. Stiverne is just too short and would look like Eddie Chambers trying to out-box Klitschko a few years back, and if Wladimir fought Wilder, I wouldn’t be the least bit shocked if he put him to sleep with the first big right hand or left-hook he landed.

It’s been a decade since Klitschko last lost. You can rip his opposition all you want, but nobody dominates any era if they’re not a pretty special or unique fighter. I see Wladimir as being more unique. It’s suicide bringing the fight to him and if you try and beat him by waiting and reacting, he’ll jab you silly and eventually put you away with a right hand. Wladimir is a lot like Lennox Lewis, the difference being Lewis fought with more confidence and had a much better uppercut. Lennox was also more willing to exchange anywhere in the ring and he could in-fight better. The problem fans and the boxing media have with Wladimir Klitschko is, he so often looks vulnerable and no more than one punch away from being stopped. And you know what, that’s the same thing his opponents see when they watch him. Then they get in the ring with him and find out that getting to him and rattling him to where he’s not fighting his fight is much tougher than it looks. All he’s done is compile a record of 24-2 (19) in title bouts facing every fighter who was qualified to fight him.

To those who haven’t seen enough to at least give him his due, face it, the only opponent he has to worry about is father time calling on him. There isn’t one heavyweight walking the planet that is big enough, fast enough or good enough to out-box him. Sure, he could be stopped on any given night by a legitimate puncher. All you have to do is point out the fighter who has the power and the means to deliver it against him, and then I’ll entertain him losing in 2015.

What’s left to be said about the dominance of Wladimir Klitschko that hasn’t been said? He just made the 17th consecutive defense of his heavyweight title and only trails Larry Holmes (20) and Joe Louis (25). I have both Louis (2) and Holmes (4) in my all-time top five heavyweight champs. No, I don’t think Wladimir is amongst the top-10 all-time great heavyweight champs. But for argument sake, I ask – during Louis’ and Holmes’ title defenses, who did they defend their titles against who Klitschko wouldn’t have beaten?

I’ve gone over the title record of Joe Louis and you know who I come up with? Max Schmeling. I’m not saying Schmeling would beat Klitschko, but he did beat Joe Louis in his prime. Yes, an unprepared Louis, but Joe scored his most impressive career victory over Max Baer a year before fighting Schmeling the first time. All that I’m saying is, the only fighter Louis defended the title against that wouldn’t be considered a “no hope” against Klitschko is Max Schmeling. Conversely, you could say the same about Louis regarding the challengers Wladimir defended against in title bouts, and that is Louis would’ve beat every opponent Klitschko faced in a title bout, at least theoretically.

What about Holmes?

I’ve seen practically every fight of Larry’s career and all of his title defenses, and the only fighters Holmes defended his title against that wouldn’t be a “no hope” opponent against Wladimir are Earnie Shavers, Gerry Cooney and Tim Witherspoon. Yes, Klitschko would probably be favored over all three. But Shavers had the mindset and power to knock Wladimir out if he catches him first, and the undefeated Cooney who Holmes fought was every bit the killer that Wladimir is. Gerry had the style, size and power to blow Klitschko out, or get knocked out in the process. Either way, if you bet on Klitschko to beat Shavers or Cooney, I doubt if you’re sitting ringside right before the first round that you’re saying to yourself, “I wish I bet more.” And the Witherspoon who fought Holmes had the boxing skill, size and punch to beat Klitschko. Remember, I’m taking the challengers the night they fought Holmes and Klitschko. And like Louis, Holmes would’ve theoretically defeated every challenger Wladimir defended against.

The argument against Klitschko is everybody he fought is terrible so he gets no props for winning in the eyes of many fans and media. I remember thinking during the 1990s that the Lewis, Holyfield, Tyson and Bowe era paled in comparison to the Ali, Foreman, Frazier and Holmes era, and I wasn’t alone in holding that point of view. But you know what, how good do the 1990s heavyweights look to the lot Klitschko has defended his title against circa 2006-2014? In fact looking at today’s heavyweight division, the Dokes, Page, Witherspoon, Tubbs, Cooney, Thomas and Berbick era doesn’t look as bad as it did when we were living it.

Every era looks better looking back. In 15 years the opponents that Wladimir fought will probably look less pedestrian than they do now. I’m not saying Wladimir is among the top five all-time heavyweight greats, I’m only saying he would’ve been a handful for any past all-time great.

I’ll wait five years after he’s retired before I attempt to rate Wladimir Klitschko. But I can tell you this, if we’re taking him and bringing him back to the 1950s, 1960s or 1970s, or bringing those past greats up to 2014, he’ll make my top 12 easily on a one-off head to head basis. His size, strength and ability to force his physicality on his opponent is just too much of a factor to discount or dismiss.

Frank Lotierzo can be contacted at GlovedFist@Gmail.com

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COMMENTS

-brownsugar :

WK can't be denied.... He did it the hard way... He earned it. Give credit where credit is due.


-Froggy :

WK can't be denied.... He did it the hard way... He earned it. Give credit where credit is due.
I agree brownsugar and I think history will be very kind to him and to Vitaly, much kinder than some people are to them right now !


-brownsugar :

I agree brownsugar and I think history will be very kind to him and to Vitaly, much kinder than some people are to them right now !
Its funny Froggy... WK is considered the "softy" when compared to his seamingly more vicious brother.... but he's actually been more consistent and devastating than Vitality. Before its over he may even be considered the best in the K family.


-Gabrielito :

Wlad has to be one of hardest punchers of the last 20 years. The disbelief on both Haye and Pulev's faces as they reel from the impact of the Wlad left hook tells the story, as do the drunken stumbles they take before hitting the mat. I also noticed the stab jab to the pit of the stomach of Pulev, nice touch. Manny Steward loved knockouts. He would be proud.


-Kid Blast :


Yes!


-Radam G :

[SUB][/SUB]NOPE! I don't buy that one. Doc Wlad K would not have been a title threat in any era. He would not have even been a fringe contender in 1890 through the 1980$. The coming of big money, 10oz gloves for heavies and the pseudo division of cruiserweight have benefited Doc Wlad IMHO. Holla!


-Kid Blast :

Seems to be a big turnaround on how people feel about Wlad and it's about time. He just goes out there and does is thang. And he seems to get better and better doing it.


-Kid Blast :

And a big credit to Banks who seems to have been a perfect repayment for Manny.


-Froggy :

[SUB][/SUB]NOPE! I don't buy that one. Doc Wlad K would not have been a title threat in any era. He would not have even been a fringe contender in 1890 through the 1980$. The coming of big money, 10oz gloves for heavies and the pseudo division of cruiserweight have benefited Doc Wlad IMHO. Holla!
Between 1890 and 1980 the list of champions, not fringe contenders, includes Bob Fitzsimmons,Marvin Hart, Tommy Burns, Jack Sharkey, Primo Canera, James J. Braddock. Floyd Patterson, Ingemar Johhansson, Leon Spinx, Michael Spinx not to mention many short term champs since then ! Klitschko could not have been a contender when those guys were champions ? Surely you jest !


-Radam G :

Between 1890 and 1980 the list of champions, not fringe contenders, includes Bob Fitzsimmons,Marvin Hart, Tommy Burns, Jack Sharkey, Primo Canera, James J. Braddock. Floyd Patterson, Ingemar Johhansson, Leon Spinx, Michael Spinx not to mention many short term champs since then ! Klitschko could not have been a contender when those guys were champions ? Surely you jest !
He would not have been able to beat any of them IMHO. Especially not record setting Tommy Burns and definitely not the Spinks brothers. And all these pugs fought with six-and-eight ounce gloves on too. Doc Wlad K's chin or eye sockets or ribs would have held up. Doc Wlad and the late, great Floyd Patterson would have had a knockdownfest with Patterson lasting to beat the count and get the victory. Fans and pundits are misled by the hyped-up size of nowadays heavy giants fighting bums, marshmallows and no chancers. But light fighters like Micky Ward, Jack Dempsey, Archie Moore, Two Tony Galeto and Bob Fitz Simmon -- the first pugs to win world titles in three divisions -- would have cleaned clocks on the K-bros/docs. They couldn't carry a bucket of sweat of Jerry Quarry or Gerry Cooney. I ain't ever fooled by nowadays short-cut theatre and monster-fantasy hype. Holla!


-Radam G :

Don't forget that you had short-term champs because you had long-term contenders fighting each other. And fighting nine and 10 times a year. Don't let nowadays one-and-two-fight-a-year heavies fool you. I beat up heavyweights in the gym because I can. I'm not hyped by size. Skills pay the bills. Holla!


-Froggy :

He would not have been able to beat any of them IMHO. Especially not record setting Tommy Burns and definitely not the Spinks brothers. And all these pugs fought with six-and-eight ounce gloves on too. Doc Wlad K's chin or eye sockets or ribs would have held up. Doc Wlad and the late, great Floyd Patterson would have had a knockdownfest with Patterson lasting to beat the count and get the victory. Fans and pundits are misled by the hyped-up size of nowadays heavy giants fighting bums, marshmallows and no chancers. But light fighters like Micky Ward, Jack Dempsey, Archie Moore, Two Tony Galeto and Bob Fitz Simmon -- the first pugs to win world titles in three divisions -- would have cleaned clocks on the K-bros/docs. They couldn't carry a bucket of sweat of Jerry Quarry or Gerry Cooney. I ain't ever fooled by nowadays short-cut theatre and monster-fantasy hype. Holla!
Record setting Tommy Burns, most consecutive KO'S defending the heavyweight title, was an underated champ ! I live about 1 hours drive from where he grew up so he is my homeboy so to speak ! He was the little white mouse being played with by the big black cat Jack Johnson when he lost the title ! He would have done no better against WK ! I remember how well Neon Leon did against Dwight , ALL 5 FT. 7 OF him, Quawi ! Some fans are misled by hyped up giants nowadays but some are not misled ! Lennox Lewis, learned how to box in the same city where I live, was the first big man who was also good, the Klitschko's are number 2 and 3 of the good big men and it will only continue ! Jerry Quarry ? He lost to another of my home boys, George Chuvalo, so you are saying Chuvalo would beat WK ? You know your syet Radam G but I have to disagree !


-Radam G :

Record setting Tommy Burns, most consecutive KO'S defending the heavyweight title, was an underated champ ! I live about 1 hours drive from where he grew up so he is my homeboy so to speak ! He was the little white mouse being played with by the big black cat Jack Johnson when he lost the title ! He would have done no better against WK ! I remember how well Neon Leon did against Dwight , ALL 5 FT. 7 OF him, Quawi ! Some fans are misled by hyped up giants nowadays but some are not misled ! Lennox Lewis, learned how to box in the same city where I live, was the first big man who was also good, the Klitschko's are number 2 and 3 of the good big men and it will only continue ! Jerry Quarry ? He lost to another of my home boys, George Chuvalo, so you are saying Chuvalo would beat WK ? You know your syet Radam G but I have to disagree !
You cannot compare Jack Johnson with Doc Wlad or washed-up, drugged-out Neon Leon about what he did against 5'5 Qawi. Styles make fights. And the times are important. I expect for you to disagree because you see cannot what I know about the fighters and chemistry of fighting. To this day, New Jack people tell me that it was no way that the late greats Ken Norton and "Smokin'" Joe Frazier got knocked out by Rev. George Foreman, but gave GOAT Ali pure hell and even beat him. And then when I show them the films, they claim trick photography. And just as little bitty Sam Langford was avoided by BIG, bad Jack Johnson, little bitty James "Lights out" Toney has been avoided by the BIG, BAD K-bros/docs. Nothing under the sun ever changes but da playas. The doubts and blindness ride on. There will always be those who say that it could not be so. My 114-year-old uncle (Tio) Mamoy told me it would be morning like this. Disbelief is a strong thing, and it rolls on with astounding hype and ability blindness for every generation. People mocked a computer for scoring a Rocky Marciano victory over GOAT Ali, while he was in exile. But then that computer proved to be a lived dog when a man -- "Smokin' Joe Frazier -- similarly built like Rocky beat the GOAT Ali. I guess all the instigators and agitators forgot the night that young Cassius got a gift decision over Doug Jones and than ducked him. Look, my reader mate Froggy, the game is full of optical illusions and great ones that have gotten contusions by the types that don't supposed to be able to beat them. Anything that I post, I can back it up with history, antidotes and clear sweet science. Holla!


-Froggy :

Radam G, I respectfully 100% disagree, nuff said !


-Radam G :

Radam G, I respectfully 100% disagree, nuff said !
Absolutely no problem. Holla!


-stormcentre :

I had a big grin reading the title of this thread/article. Pleeeeease. Anyone of the champions and decent contenders of the recent eras and also yesteryear that could really punch, defend, get past a jab, and move; would give serious Wlad trouble. Imagine a prime Tyson or Marciano getting past Wlad's jab, that Klitscho jawline would just go "cha-ching" like crystal glassware. Bowe would bust him up. Lewis would too. Buster Douglas would be an issue for him too. And, as for yesteryear's Marciano, Sharkey, Charles, Louis, Corbet, Jeffries, Burns, Frazier, Foreman, Holmes and Holyfield - these considerations make me even more unsure of the "any heavyweight era" bit of the title of this article/thread. Wlad has no head movement, relies on size, distance and controlling the pace. His fast twitch muscle fibers also seem AWOL. He is slow and not explosive. His punching technique is alright, but not superb like other Eastern Bloc trained fighters. He, often, fights rigidly, nervously and not relaxed. He is robotic and predictable, and his stamina (and other qualities) is seriously suss and unproven in meaningful heavyweight shootouts (think Holyfield - Bowe or Ibeabuchi - Tua). Finally, his competition - as much as the article seeks to lessen, dismiss and/or circumvent it - is an issue and directly related fact when assessing the title of the article's merit - how can it not be? And, on that point Wlad's competition is usually well picked, soft and un-capable of presenting problems and not performing to expectations. If all there were to "any heavyweight era" was Herbie Hide, Tommy Morrison, Michael Moorer and Oliver McCall; then maybe Wlad would have been a title threat in any era. But unfortunately there is a little more to being a title threat in any heavyweight era than just that, as just the above list shows.


-Radam G :

I had a big grin reading the title of this thread/article. Pleeeeease. Anyone of the champions and decent contenders of the recent eras and also yesteryear that could really punch, defend, get past a jab, and move; would give serious Wlad trouble. Imagine a prime Tyson or Marciano getting past Wlad's jab, that Klitscho jawline would just go "cha-ching" like crystal glassware. Bowe would bust him up. Lewis would too. Buster Douglas would be an issue for him too. And, as for yesteryear's Marciano, Sharkey, Charles, Louis, Corbet, Jeffries, Burns, Frazier, Foreman, Holmes and Holyfield - these considerations make me even more unsure of the "any heavyweight era" bit of the title of this article/thread. Wlad has no head movement, relies on size, distance and controlling the pace. His fast twitch muscle fibers also seem AWOL. He is slow and not explosive. His punching technique is alright, but not superb like other Eastern Bloc trained fighters. He, often, fights rigidly, nervously and not relaxed. He is robotic and predictable, and his stamina (and other qualities) is seriously suss and unproven in meaningful heavyweight shootouts (think Holyfield - Bowe or Ibeabuchi - Tua). Finally, his competition - as much as the article seeks to lessen, dismiss and/or circumvent it - is an issue and directly related fact when assessing the title of the article's merit - how can it not be? And, on that point Wlad's competition is usually well picked, soft and un-capable of presenting problems and not performing to expectations. If all there were to "any heavyweight era" was Herbie Hide, Tommy Morrison, Michael Moorer and Oliver McCall; then maybe Wlad would have been a title threat in any era. But unfortunately there is a little more to being a title threat in any heavyweight era than just that, as just the above list shows.
Wow! You killed it. You came hard with it. I was trying to be a bit generous. Hehehe! You absolutely were not. Doc Wlad lacks so much that a blind could see. Holla!


-gibola :

Yes, he is a threat to anybody in history. I go against the conventional wisdom of head movement, pressure beating him. Head movement against that extended left arm just means you end up in a clinch (Povetkin) or pulled to the floor as the hand reaches around the back of the neck (Haye). I think people who avoid the tangle of arms, jab at Wlad, try to exchange punches are the ones who give him most problems. Lewis is the one guy I'm pretty sure would beat him but I give Bowe, Holmes, Foreman (and Vitali!) very good chances. I know it's blasphemy to some but (despite him being one of the ATGs and a hero of mine) he eats up Frazier, same with Norton, Liston and Louis might be interesting with their jab and power but the size would be decisive. I can't stand Wlad and his horrible style but I must say I was impressed on Saturday night. I watched most of Pulev's fights and he's for real, he could jab and grab with Wlad on fairly equalish terms but Wlad's lead left hook made the difference. I can't stand Wlad the fighter but I respect his record and he's a nightmare for any heavyweight in history (particularly in this era, particularly in mainland Europe where any amount of blatant holding, pushing and grabbing is tolerated - what'd get you DQ'd in the UK/US in 1974 draws no comment in 2014 mainland Europe).


-The Commish :

[SUB][/SUB]NOPE! I don't buy that one. Doc Wlad K would not have been a title threat in any era. He would not have even been a fringe contender in 1890 through the 1980$. The coming of big money, 10oz gloves for heavies and the pseudo division of cruiserweight have benefited Doc Wlad IMHO. Holla!
Are you kidding? Did you really just say Doc Wlad K would NOT have been a title threat in ANY era? Did you just say he would NOT have even been a FRINGE contender in 1890 through the 1980's? You were probably tired from sleepless nights in Macau and meant to write "Doc Wlad K WOULD have been a title threat in any era. He would have been MORE than a fringe contender in 1890 through the 1980's." Whew! For a moment, I thought you were telling us that Klitschko would have been a non-entity had he fought pre-1980. Then I realized you are running around Macau, spreading your love. I do agree with you that the creation of the cruiserweight division has benefitted Wlad, as several of his opponents have been overstuffed cruisers. But, accepting your post as an oversight, where you inserted the word "not" where it did NOT belong, you changed what you really meant. You know that Wlad would definitely have been a threat--and probably a champion--in ANY era. Get some rest. Enjoy Macau. Enjoy the fight on Saturday, too. I'm sure we'll have a lot to discuss afterwards. -Randy G.


-Radam G :

Are you kidding? Did you really just say Doc Wlad K would NOT have been a title threat in ANY era? Did you just say he would NOT have even been a FRINGE contender in 1890 through the 1980's? You were probably tired from sleepless nights in Macau and meant to write "Doc Wlad K WOULD have been a title threat in any era. He would have been MORE than a fringe contender in 1890 through the 1980's." Whew! For a moment, I thought you were telling us that Klitschko would have been a non-entity had he fought pre-1980. Then I realized you are running around Macau, spreading your love. I do agree with you that the creation of the cruiserweight division has benefitted Wlad, as several of his opponents have been overstuffed cruisers. But, accepting your post as an oversight, where you inserted the word "not" where it did NOT belong, you changed what you really meant. You know that Wlad would definitely have been a threat--and probably a champion--in ANY era. Get some rest. Enjoy Macau. Enjoy the fight on Saturday, too. I'm sure we'll have a lot to discuss afterwards. -Randy G.
Hehehe! Centimeters are the difference and proper food. I have no doubt about what is in place to make Doc Wlad great today. Ten-ounce thumb-less gloves, fat, sorry-arse pugs on bad food, terrible trainers and cowardly pugs crumbling because of Doc Steelhammer's hype. And, of course money to keep lighter divisional pugs from coming up and knocking out all the fatties and tallies. If I were 10 inches taller and a 100 pounds heavier, no nowadays heavyweight would stand a chance, danggit! BTW! We got a secret-weapon heavyweight outta Asia. He will be ruling things in a year or two. We have him on proper foods, especially beets from an enchanted mountain on the P-Islands. Holla at more reality of the actuality of beets. And it is all true and blue. And we are getting ready to do da DO!
->http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8x5APKnt9KY. Holla!


-The Commish :

Hehehe! Centimeters are the difference and proper food. I have no doubt about what is in place to make Doc Wlad great today. Ten-ounce thumb-less gloves, fat, sorry-arse pugs on bad food, terrible trainers and cowardly pugs crumbling because of Doc Steelhammer's hype. And, of course money to keep lighter divisional pugs from coming up and knocking out all the fatties and tallies. If I were 10 inches taller and a 100 pounds heavier, no nowadays heavyweight would stand a chance, danggit! BTW! We got a secret-weapon heavyweight outta Asia. He will be ruling things in a year or two. We have him on proper foods, especially beets from an enchanted mountain on the P-Islands. Holla at more reality of the actuality of beets. And it is all true and blue. And we are getting ready to do da DO!
->http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8x5APKnt9KY. Holla!
I have always liked beets, but now you've got me eating them on a regular basis, Radam. Thanks. Now, changing tracks from beets to beatdowns. Wlad Klitschko would have ruled in any era. There have been 75 men who have held the Heavyweight Championship of the World, with 73 of them not named Klitschko. They are: JohnL.SullivanJamesJ.CorbettBobFitzsimmons JamesJ.JeffriesMarvinHartTommyBurns JackJohnsonJessWillardJackDempseyGene TunneyMaxSchmelingJackSharkeyPrimoCarnera MaxBaerJamesJ.BraddockJoeLouis EzzardCharlesJerseyJoeWalcottRockyMarciano FloydPatersonIngemarJohannsonSonnyListon CassiusClayMuhammadAliErnieTerrellJoeFrazier JimmyEllisGeorgeForemanMuhammadAliLeon SpinksKenNortonLarryHolmesJohnTateMike WeaverMichaelDokesGerrieCoetzeeTim WitherspoonPinklonThomasGregPageTonyTubbs MichaelSpinksTrevorBerbickJamesSmith MikeTysonTonyTuckerJamesDouglas FrancescoDamianiEvanderHolyfieldRayMercer MichaelMoorerRiddickBoweLennoxLewis TommyMorrisonMichaelBenttHerbieHideOliver McCallBruceSeldonFrankBrunoHenryAkinwande ChrisByrdJohnRuizHasimRahmanRoyJones CorrieSandersLamonBrewsterNicoleiValuev SergieLiakhovichOlegMaskaevShannonBriggs RuslanChagaevSultanIbragimov SamPeterDavidHayeAlexanderPovetkin BermaneStiverne Then there are the Klitschko Brothers, Vitali and Wladimir. Vitali may have been the tougher of the two. Wladimir may have been the better of the two. Are you really saying K2 could not have beaten any one of the above in that run-on heavyweight group, or competed as even a fringe contender. Please! The K2 boys would have beaten 85% of that group, if not more. You really should be showing K2 much more love. They would rule in any era! -Randy G.


-Froggy :

It is hard to imagine how the Klitschko brothers both about 6 ft. 6 and 250 pounds and good could not have done well, very well against anyone in the gloved era !


-amayseng :

With Wlad's chin and his earlier knockouts it is hard to say he would have overcame the likes of prime Hollyfield, Bowe, Tyson, Liston, Braddock, Morrison, Foreman, Ali, Lewis, Joe Frazier, Spinks, Holmes, Marciano, and so on and so forth. You can add another 25 to this list of guys who would have sparked Wlad out and he would have never gotten to the level he is at now. Yes he is dominate now, but his competition has been disturbingly bad.


-Radam G :

With Wlad's chin and his earlier knockouts it is hard to say he would have overcame the likes of prime Hollyfield, Bowe, Tyson, Liston, Braddock, Morrison, Foreman, Ali, Lewis, Joe Frazier, Spinks, Holmes, Marciano, and so on and so forth. You can add another 25 to this list of guys who would have sparked Wlad out and he would have never gotten to the level he is at now. Yes he is dominate now, but his competition has been disturbingly bad.
Ditto! DITTO, Amayseng! You are on point. Holla!


-Radam G :

It is hard to imagine how the Klitschko brothers both about 6 ft. 6 and 250 pounds and good could not have done well, very well against anyone in the gloved era !
In nearly a hundred years of professional gloved pugilism between the 1890s to 1980$, only three three tallies and/or fatties won setup or paper titles. I've been able to identify 27 6-foot-5 or taller pugs who fought for titles, but got their arses thrashed. And I've been able to located 15 pugs 240lbs of heavier that got their arses KICKED! WHY, oh WHY, the above? Because there was no pseudo cruiserweight division around to give giants a fair- play, fight-somebody-your-size shot. When one gets too tall or too fat, he loses control of gravity and fluidity of movement swiftness. This is why they are not taken on military battle fields. And in Amerkano football, it is rare for them to be anything but clearing-the-way linemen. And that is a hard fact, jack. I put no burden on your back. Trust me! There is a reason that before the 1980$, only three tallsy and/or biggum heavyweight champion -- "Jessie Willard" - a setup to get rip of a black champ, "Primo Canera" -- a setup for to keep the mafia running syet, and "Ernie Terrell" - a paper-champ setup to strip a-then-hated Muslim GOAT Ali for standing up as injustices, were champs! There were less weight divisions. And big money was to be made at heavyweight. Spreading out more money and more divisions are the reasons that larger heavyweights now rule. And they far, far from better of those of yesteryears. It is all about da money. Always follow that trail. Holla!


-Froggy :

People are getting bigger all the time, how tall was 'The Galveston Giant" ? He was a giant at the time and a very, very, good giant ! They are going to get bigger and better , they always have !


-ultimoshogun :

Woulda been fun to have Wlad in with the 90's HW's. I think guys like Bowe, Lewis, Mercer, and my boy, Holyfield woulda beat Wlad. Vs guys like Morrison and Ruddock woulda been a pick 'em fight. I feel he woulda beat 90's George Foreman.


-stormcentre :

Wlad reminds me of a white and Eastern Bloc version of Britain's Frank Bruno.


-Radam G :

People are getting bigger all the time, how tall was 'The Galveston Giant" ? He was a giant at the time and a very, very, good giant ! They are going to get bigger and better , they always have !
There is no growth of boxing heavyweight champions. Or even a growth of humans in boxing. In 1890, there was a 5'10 heavyweight champ. And the same in 1990. In 1915, the champ was 6'6, and the one in the start of 2015 will be the same height -- 6'6. Nobody is growing bigger. The putting of pseudo weight divisions have caused an optical illusion in boxing, so that the sanctioning crooks can keep getting giant fees. Holla!


-Froggy :

Why then was Jack Johnson called a giant when he was 6 ft. or 6 ft. 1 and now that is considered a small heavyweight ? Ali was not considered a giant but was 2 inches taller than Johnson ! You can not really believe people are not getting bigger !


-Radam G :

Why then was Jack Johnson called a giant when he was 6 ft. or 6 ft. 1 and now that is considered a small heavyweight ? Ali was not considered a giant but was 2 inches taller than Johnson ! You can not really believe people are not getting bigger !
I gotta go. I'll have an answer later. I just spotted C-Al. Time for psy ops. Holla!


-Froggy :

I gotta go. I'll have an answer later. I just spotted C-Al. Time for psy ops. Holla!
Well I hope you don't try to throw him off his game, Manny doesn't need anybody's help !


-SouthPaul :

With Wlad's chin and his earlier knockouts it is hard to say he would have overcame the likes of prime Hollyfield, Bowe, Tyson, Liston, Braddock, Morrison, Foreman, Ali, Lewis, Joe Frazier, Spinks, Holmes, Marciano, and so on and so forth. You can add another 25 to this list of guys who would have sparked Wlad out and he would have never gotten to the level he is at now. Yes he is dominate now, but his competition has been disturbingly bad.
Co-sign. First name to the next 25... prime Tua. Id drop coin Tua would knock Wlad's head off into the cheap seats with chin fragments splattering the first few rows. Max and Jim would be digging splintered chin chips from their faces for months to follow.


-mortcola :

Beautiful work, F-Lo. The underrating of WK is ridiculous. Frank Bruno? Are you kidding? Bruno couldn?t avoid being hit, and had perhaps four or five punches he was capable of throwing. WK completely customizes his punch angle and timing to what his opponent presents. WK?s head movement, foot movement, ability to throw off his opponent?s movement, are nearly unparalleled among any heavy of any era. I know lots of you don?t like the way he looks, but this is a true style-substance debate. Opponents of any size and any style have nearly equal difficulty touching his chin, even though he is right there, keeping them in his punching sweet spot. And if he wants to box rhythmically and fluidly he can do so as well as any big man you can name. Steward said he had the best mechanics, athletic ability, and hardest punch of anyone he ever encountered in his career as a trainer. Style vs substance, guys. His only weakness, overall, was battle anxiety - not even a chin problem - just a tendency to freak out under pressure. He has gotten that under control, and as a result, has dominated all of his subsequent opponents, an entire era, to a degree that no one in heavyweight history has ever done in their era. Now, Radam hold himself as the true Yoda of boksin trooth. But i?m also very, very confident in what my boxing eye-brain tell me. And I can separate entertainment value from substance, imaginary alternate-universes to what?s right in front of you pretty well. The critics are the same ones who, for so long, talked about the K-bros as if they were similar fighters, when in fact they are technically utterly distinct fighters. That?s a special kind of blindness. I side with F-Lo, along with S-Tol the sharpest and deepest known? scribes on this site.


-stormcentre :

Hmmm . . . ""His only weakness, overall, was battle anxiety - not even a chin problem - just a tendency to freak out under pressure"" Interesting, I would have thought that most experienced boxing observers would know that; a) Battle anxiety and "a chin problem" are certainly not mutually exclusive and in fact can easily be mutually inclusive - due to the fact that - to a certain extent/percentage - being susceptible to be KO'd is psychological. b) Anyone that freaks out under pressure in a sport like heavyweight boxing is themselves - when considered in combination with the definition of this thread's title; representative of a set of circumstances that are almost, for all practical purposes, mutually exclusive. I'm not even going near the "customisation of punch angles" and Wlad's "head movement". Wlad loves to clinch, almost as a substitute for infighting and very few of the great heavyweights I mentioned rely on that. You usually come out with some well crafted and good stuff mortcola, but looks like we have to disagree on this. Peace out man.


-mortcola :

Hmmm . . . ""His only weakness, overall, was battle anxiety - not even a chin problem - just a tendency to freak out under pressure"" Interesting, I would have thought that most experienced boxing observers would know that; a) Battle anxiety and "a chin problem" are certainly not mutually exclusive and in fact can easily be mutually inclusive - due to the fact that - to a certain extent/percentage - being susceptible to be KO'd is psychological. b) Anyone that freaks out under pressure in a sport like heavyweight boxing is themselves - when considered in combination with the definition of this thread's title; representative of a set of circumstances that are almost, for all practical purposes, mutually exclusive. I'm not even going near the "customisation of punch angles" and Wlad's "head movement". Wlad loves to clinch, almost as a substitute for infighting and very few of the great heavyweights I mentioned rely on that. You usually come out with some well crafted and good stuff mortcola, but looks like we have to disagree on this. Peace out man.
Thats OK. Peace out for sure. Anyway, I make a lot out of the conquering of anxiety, especially when it results in high effectiveness. As for the punch angles and head movement, and finding precisely the trajectory and distance for his shots on a given opponent, his supporters in general are big ing these. One German show (no kidding) did a breakdown of the geometry of his movement and punch angles, both for accuracy and maximization of power. A very good objective, quanfitifed and analyzed look at the tactics themselves and their effectiveness/efficiency, rather than their aesthetics. I share a dislike of his clinching and am not beyond criticizing the way he implements whole parts of his game - Manny always judged him by how he kept to or deviated from both fight plan, obviously, but also the technical details they meticulously devised. But, reciprocal respect for your usual analysis. Nothing lost.


-mortcola :

Co-sign. First name to the next 25... prime Tua. Id drop coin Tua would knock Wlad's head off into the cheap seats with chin fragments splattering the first few rows. Max and Jim would be digging splintered chin chips from their faces for months to follow.
Then again, given that WK was a much more defensively effective fighter than Lennox Lewis, there is a better chance that he too, like several others as well, would just neutralize Tua, who wilted many times when faced with a superior boxer who could control range and pace.


-Froggy :

David Tua was one of my favorites, but when he fought Lewis as soon as he felt Lewis's power the fight was over as Tua was only there to survive ! I think the same thing would have Happened with WK !


-The Commish :

I gotta go. I'll have an answer later. I just spotted C-Al. Time for psy ops. Holla!
Careful, you may get yourself psyched out, instead. However, Pacquiao needs rabid fans like you trying to work your voo-doo. That's because, mnetally, Algieri has not broken, not one little bit. Back to the heavyweights. Guys of yesteryear were indeed smaller. Yes, there were big guys competing at a high level (Jess Willard), but, for the most part, the heavyweights competing at the turn of the century (115 years ago) were not large men in terms of height. Both John L. zSullivan and Bob Fitzsimmons stood under 6'0". James J. Jeffries and Jim Corbett both were 6'1". Jack Johnson Was a shade over 6'0". Yet, Johnson's stature, physique, athleticism and all-around brashness gave him an appearance of being so much larger than he really was. Yes, the proliferation of the cruiserweight division dropped many smaller heavyweights into that division. But, how many quality sub-200-pounders have we seen over the years who can fight successfully at heavyweight? Oh, there's been Jack Dempsey, Harry Greb, Joe Louis, Ezzard Charles, Rocky Marciano and Floyd Patterson. Since then, very few have been able to step up and face the natural heavyweights, guys like Muhammad Ali, Riddick Bowe, Lennox Lewis, the Klitschko Brothers and the whole slew of 6'4" and up heavyweights who stand on the horizon. Plus, and we are not talking HGH or any other drug here, training methods have improved. There is nothing wrong with good old fashioned roadwork, hitting the bags, sparring, jumping rope and calisthenics, but when you throw in some of the exercises put forth by strength and conditioning coaches, you come out some of the times with a super athlete. Wladimir is not just a near 6'7" heavyweight boxer. He is a near 6'7" heavyweight who is technically-flawed in many ways and certainly beatable as we have seen. However, he uses his physical attributes to his advantage and has learned to miniize his weakness (having his chin touched). I agree there are some heavyweight champions on the list of every heavyweight champion I threw up a few posts ago who might beat Klitschko. But the list is small. Wladimir Klitschko would have been near the top or at the top in any era he would have fought in--be it with leather-wrapped knuckles, 10-ounce gloves or larger. In dream matches against every other heavyweight champion through the ages, I believe Wladimir would have had his hands raised at least 80-85% of the time. -Randy G.


-amayseng :

"WK?s head movement, foot movement, ability to throw off his opponent?s movement, are nearly unparalleled among any heavy of any era." Um, Ali, Tyson, Joe Frazier to name a few.


-Radam G :

Why then was Jack Johnson called a giant when he was 6 ft. or 6 ft. 1 and now that is considered a small heavyweight ? Ali was not considered a giant but was 2 inches taller than Johnson ! You can not really believe people are not getting bigger !
LATE, LATE response. But I've been jiving and conniving and spooking Team C-Al. I checked and rechecked and hollered at a couple of oldtimers that are still kicking around at 97 and 98 years old. Calling the Jack Johnson the "Galveston Giant" was a media thing. The boxing community knew as "Big Smoke." The media used to attach their own labels on pugs. And the media would double sound things. For instance, like years later, they called the young Cassius Clay the "Louisville Lips" and Ezzard Charles "Cincinnati Cobra." And Joe Louis the BrownBomber and "Detriot Destoyer." And somone like Tony Galento would be "Two Ton' Tony." [GOAT Ali has tall genes. His Irish grandfather was 6'6. And holla at GOAT Ali's grown children and distant cousin Tyson Fury.] The "White Hope," who fought Jack Johnson was called "a giant for the white race," as Johnson was called "a giant for the black race." "Giant" was used figuatively, not literally. Before becoming a boxing champ, Johnson was by no means a giant in human man physicality. On the shipping dock of Galveston, where he had been employed since 12-years old, there were Scottish and "Viking" sailors and ship servicemen who put his weight and height to shame. These "ship hands and lumberjacks were 6'3 to 6'6 225-to-300 pounds big. They were thought of as too clumsy to box. The few that did got their arses handed to them. In that day and time, big and tall were the circus, freak shows and heavy work. My friends, don't believe the hype. Humans -- especially in the West -- are getting fatter and more obese, not bigger or taller. Our human anatomy has not changed in a thousand years or so. We do less physical work, exercises and hunting than we used to. Thus, we are lazy-as syet and fat as elephants. And excuse makers are saying that we are getting bigger and taller. NYET! Holla!


-Radam G :

Well I hope you don't try to throw him off his game, Manny doesn't need anybody's help !
There is always a need for help. You are just looking at the end results in that squared jungle. The start of the fight is always long before then. Holla!


-Froggy :

There is always a need for help. You are just looking at the end results in that squared jungle. The start of the fight is always long before then. Holla!
You are 100% right the only thing I was referring to were the results of the fight !


-SouthPaul :

Mortcola I honestly don't view Wlad as some sort of defensive genius. His scariness is what works for him and it wins fights but it ain't nothing overly impressive IMO. Maybe I'm being unfair but a man that size should be walking thru his opponents at a more confident pace. Every time he gets hit solid he's shook up and terrified looking. Its the current landscape of the heavyweight scene that makes him so successful. He's also in a very, very comfortable setting every time he fights (home field, promotional advantage). That certainly matters for the scary. And! He needs to quit shoving his opponents. His shove has become his bread and butter follow up. His signature punch...if you will.


-The Shadow :

Mortcola I honestly don't view Wlad as some sort of defensive genius. His scariness is what works for him and it wins fights but it ain't nothing overly impressive IMO. Maybe I'm being unfair but a man that size should be walking thru his opponents at a more confident pace. Every time he gets hit solid he's shook up and terrified looking. Its the current landscape of the heavyweight scene that makes him so successful. He's also in a very, very comfortable setting every time he fights (home field, promotional advantage). That certainly matters for the scary. And! He needs to quit shoving his opponents. His shove has become his bread and butter follow up. His signature punch...if you will.
I noticed that, too, every time he gets touched, his body reacts like a frantic novice thrown into the ring for the very first time. To his credit, though, he's found a way to prevent that from happening too much. And yeah, that shove kinda ruined the visual of what was a picture-perfect, lethal left hook. You can't change your temperament. Wlad seems to have that of a p****. The way he reacts to knockdowns as well aren't pretty -- his immediate reaction screams "HELP!" To his credit, I did like that his immediate reaction to his instinctive reaction was to viciously flatten the motherf*cker. He obviously has some sick tools, like that left hook. Maybe him getting shook is what it takes for him to unleash it. The way he reacted to the knockout showed to me that he's really come far in that mental department in overcoming that major, major flaw. For context, just look at Audley Harrison who in spite of daily visualizations, affirmations and viewings of The Secret can't seem to conquer the pussycat inside himself. Wlad has done it, shoving be damned! But that's really the difference between the two Klitschko brothers: one is a born fighter. The other is a manufactured one -- but what a manufacture!


-Froggy :

Shadow who would have won WK vs VK ? I say WK, who I think has more talent, would lose to his older brother who was just too tough for WK !


-Domenic :

I'm with Mortcola on this. Wladimir's definitely not crowd pleasing, and he'll not be mistaken for Ali versus Cleveland Williams ever, but the guy's 21-0 since the Brewster debacle. All prime time, big fights. The opponents aren't a murderers row, but that's not his fault. If he was that fragile, chinny, suspect, or even that average, one of these guys would've gotten to him in the last decade. 10 years is a long time. Weaknesses are exposed in a 10 year span. That said, Wladimir is the second best fighter in his family. But both would be a force in any era.


-The Shadow :

Shadow who would have won WK vs VK ? I say WK, who I think has more talent, would lose to his older brother who was just too tough for WK !
I totally agree! Yes, Wlad has more talent but so does James Toney. At the end of the day, VK whoops that a$$ with shocking ease. Not only is he the better overall fighter, he's also much, much tougher. Not to mention Wladimir idolizes Vitali, who possess the mental advantage of being the big brother -- something you can never, ever underestimate. And consider this: Vitali knows his brother in and out. Wladimir idolizes Vitali. Vitali boxes because he's a reincarnated warrior. Wladimir boxes because of Vitali. Heck, Wladimir even went to the same nine year education for the very same program as his big brother! To be honest, I think he can whoop Wladimir to this day and can do so until the day he dies. Did you see Vitali jump over the top rope Saturday with the guile of a ballerina?! Dude is a badass. He looks stiff and robotic but make no mistake about it, dude got footwork for days. He can cut a rug with the best of them. I've seen him do a Marlon Jackson spin while knocking a dude out. He makes Chris Algieri look like a geek with two left feet. I don't care if they're 94 and 89 years old, shrunk down to 6-2 and 6-1, respectively, Big Vit will still whoop that candy a$$ on his wussified brother. No comparison! This is just my opinon; I would never know, of course. But I would put money on that one. And for whatever it's worth, Lennox Lewis has been in the ring with both. He says Vitali with no hesitation.


-Froggy :

Good stuff Shadow, I never knew Lewis was in the ring with WK, must have been sparring, maybe at the request of Manny Steward ?


-Radam G :

Good stuff Shadow, I never knew Lewis was in the ring with WK, must have been sparring, maybe at the request of Manny Steward ?
You would be shocked of who has sparred with whom. It is the nature of the game. As adult, brothers normally quit fighting one another and even sparring. Exceptions would be the late, very good Quarry boys, the Ali boys and the Curry boys for minute. Doc Vitality is not going to mess with Doc Wlad, because moms said "NYET!" And you don't mess with a boxing moms. When moms ain't happy, nobody is happy. And moms is undefeated. Holla!


-Froggy :

You would be shocked of who has sparred with whom. It is the nature of the game. As adult, brothers normally quit fighting one another and even sparring. Exceptions would be the late, very good Quarry boys, the Ali boys and the Curry boys for minute. Doc Vitality is not going to mess with Doc Wlad, because moms said "NYET!" And you don't mess with a boxing moms. When moms ain't happy, nobody is happy. And moms is undefeated. Holla!
You might be shocked to know RG that I used to put the gloves on with my baby brother, who used to spar with a former Canadian Middleweight Champion, who went the distance with a Philly fighter who beat Marvin Hagler ! I could have stepped in the ring with Hagler and been murdered in about 3 seconds !


-Radam G :

You might be shocked to know RG that I used to put the gloves on with my baby brother, who used to spar with a former Canadian Middleweight Champion, who went the distance with a Philly fighter who beat Marvin Hagler ! I could have stepped in the ring with Hagler and been murdered in about 3 seconds !
Hehehe! Who was that Philly who beat the Marvelous One? Bugaloo Watts? Watts was a bad pug. Holla!


-Froggy :

Hehehe! Who was that Philly who beat the Marvelous One? Bugaloo Watts? Watts was a bad pug. Holla!
You bet Gary Broughton went ten rounds with Watts and you know all about Watts and Hagler !


-Radam G :

You bet Gary Broughton went ten rounds with Watts and you know all about Watts and Hagler !
Watts was one of the greatest uncrowned world-champion pugs of all times. This cat had a jab, and a hook off it out of this world. Holla!


-SouthPaul :

Touch? by The Shadow (manufactured comments. Well said). And let's be clear. Respect to Wlad. Just ain't overly impressed.


-The Commish :

Then again, given that WK was a much more defensively effective fighter than Lennox Lewis, there is a better chance that he too, like several others as well, would just neutralize Tua, who wilted many times when faced with a superior boxer who could control range and pace.
I agree that if Tua landed that monster hook on Klitschko's chin it would be "Goodnight Sweet Prince" for Wlad. But, I'm also with Mortcola: He wouldn't land it! Ever since Emanuel Steward got his hands on Klitschko, the big man learned how to defend himself and keep his beard off the end of hard hits. It's funny, though, to think that Steward was able to teach Klitschko to clinch, having learned about the value of clinching by never working with Thomas Hearns on that defensive skill. The longer we're in this biz, the more we learn. -Randy G.


-SouthPaul :

Tua's granite chin multiplied by 10 oak trees is worth mentioning. Tua vs Tyson, the greatest brawl never to happen. Smfh in boxing disgust.


-King Beef :

The K bros, would have been in the mix, but I can't agree with them dominating. I personally would favor Vitali's chances over Wlad's due to VK's toughness. The skill level of the 70'-90's HWs is superior to what they are facing now; and that jab and clinch would not be as effective. They would definitely be in the mix though due to size alone.


-Radam G :

The K bros, would have been in the mix, but I can't agree with them dominating. I personally would favor Vitali's chances over Wlad's due to VK's toughness. The skill level of the 70'-90's HWs is superior to what they are facing now; and that jab and clinch would not be as effective. They would definitely be in the mix though due to size alone.
Wow! All the HUGH sizes of the 70-90 got their arses tore up. The K-bros/docs would have been at the front of the line. Holla!


-mortcola :

"WK?s head movement, foot movement, ability to throw off his opponent?s movement, are nearly unparalleled among any heavy of any era." Um, Ali, Tyson, Joe Frazier to name a few.
1. ?Nearly? 2. Ali got hit more by Chuck Wepner than WK has gotten hit in the last decade. Ali had a great chin, and his mastery of making ?em miss was briefly during the 60?s. 3. They are all great 4. His subtle defense has, statistically and visibly, made him a master of staying in range (when not clinching), avoiding shots (incredibly low much stats landed on him), while keeping the other guy in his power sweet spot Whatever legit criticisms there are, I stand by my assessment and can back it up easily with both numbers and examples. And kudos to the other greats who I grew up on and learned from.


-mortcola :

Mortcola I honestly don't view Wlad as some sort of defensive genius. His scariness is what works for him and it wins fights but it ain't nothing overly impressive IMO. Maybe I'm being unfair but a man that size should be walking thru his opponents at a more confident pace. Every time he gets hit solid he's shook up and terrified looking. Its the current landscape of the heavyweight scene that makes him so successful. He's also in a very, very comfortable setting every time he fights (home field, promotional advantage). That certainly matters for the scary. And! He needs to quit shoving his opponents. His shove has become his bread and butter follow up. His signature punch...if you will.
Some legit points. I don?t like his bad habits. But certain things work for him. I don?t think his home field advantage affects his opponents accuracy. He is very much like a heavyweight Hearns, though without the love of warfare. and, he just hasn?t been shaken up by getting hit in a long time. He has always been effective after being nailed since the Steward reformation.