Ezzard Charles is #1: Ranking The Modern LightHeavyweight Greats

Modern LightHeavyweight Greats – Ranking great fighters from different eras, when done seriously, is a daunting task. It’s easy to sit down and put together a shoot-from-the-hip list. But that doesn’t do justice to the fighters.

In recent years, I’ve sought to quantify ring greatness in a credible way. I’ve compiled lists of great champions who reigned at 135, 147, and 160 pounds and matched them against each other in round-robin tournaments with the results of each fight being predicted by a panel of boxing industry experts.

This time, it’s modern 175-pound greats.

The light-heavyweights chosen for the tournament in alphabetical order are Ezzard Charles, Billy Conn, Bob Foster, Roy Jones, Sergey Kovalev, Archie Moore, Matthew Saad Muhammad, and Michael Spinks.

Six of these fighters tested the heavyweight waters in a meaningful way. Charles and Spinks claimed the legitimate heavyweight championship of the world. Jones bested John Ruiz for the WBA belt. Conn fought Joe Louis twice. Moore vied for the title against Rocky Marciano and Floyd Patterson. Foster fought Joe Frazier and Muhammad Ali.

Charles never won the light-heavyweight title. But he’s included in tournament because many people believe he was at his best at 175 pounds. Here, I should note that Charles fought Archie Moore three times and won each time.

I didn’t include fighters who plied their trade prior to the mid-1930s because there’s not enough film footage available to properly evaluate them. Where Sergey Kovalev is concerned; his proponents have complained that none of today’s elite fighters will fight him. Now is his chance.

The panelists were asked to assume for each hypothetical fight that both fighters were at the point in their respective careers when they were able to make 175 pounds and capable of duplicating their best 175-pound performance. One can look to side issues such as same-day weigh-ins versus day-before weigh-ins. And there’s a difference between going twelve rounds as opposed to fifteen. But at the end of the day, either a fighter is very good, great, or the greatest.

Twenty-six experts participated in the rankings process. Listed alphabetically, the panelists were:

Trainers: Teddy Atlas, Pat Burns, Naazim Richardson, and Don Turner

Media: Al Bernstein, Ron Borges, Norm Frauenheim, Jerry Izenberg, Harold Lederman, Paulie Malignaggi, Dan Rafael, and Michael Rosenthal

Matchmakers: Eric Bottjer, Don Elbaum, Bobby Goodman, Brad Goodman, Ron Katz, Mike Marchionte, Russell Peltz, and Bruce Trampler

Historians: Craig Hamilton, Bob Mee, Clay Moyle, Adam Pollack, Randy Roberts, and Mike Tyson

Modern LightHeavyweight Greats

If each of the eight fighters in the tournament had fought the other seven, there would have been 28 fights. And there were 26 panelists. Thus, 728 fight predictions were entered into the data base. Fighters were awarded one point for each predicted win and a half-point for each predicted draw (too close to call). A perfect score would have been 182 points.

One matchmaker said that he never saw Moore, Charles, or Conn fight and didn’t feel comfortable predicting outcomes for their matches based on film footage. A weighted average from the other electors was used to fill in the fights at issue in his tournament grid.

In the end, Ezzard Charles was the clear choice for #1.

The final rankings and point totals are:

Ezzard Charles                            156 points

Archie Moore                               120

Roy Jones                                    104.5

Bob Foster                                   103.5

Michael Spinks                             88

Billy Conn                                     66

Sergey Kovalev                            48

Matthew Saad Muhammad         42

Sixteen of the 26 panelists thought that Bob Foster would have beaten Roy Jones. Nine picked Jones, while one said the match-up was too close to call. But Jones’s record against four of the other six fighters in the tournament was superior to Foster’s. That gave Roy a one-point edge in the final rankings.

Thirteen of the 26 panelists thought that Charles would have won all of his fights. Four thought that Jones would have prevailed in all seven of his bouts. One elector gave Michael Spinks a perfect score.

Among the comments made by electors were:

“The old guys were better boxers. The new guys are better athletes. It’s called boxing, isn’t it?”

“There are some big punchers in this tournament. But it took Rocky Marciano 23 rounds to knock Ezzard Charles out, so I don’t think any of these guys would have done it . . . Moore had a greater career at 175 pounds than Charles did. But Charles had his number . . . I hate to pick against Archie Moore at 175 pounds. But I can’t rewrite history, so I’ll pick Charles over Moore.”

“Archie Moore didn’t have the best chin in the world, but he knew how to protect it and he knew how to disarm punchers . . . No modern-day fighter beats Archie Moore at 175-pounds. He knew all the tricks, and fighters today don’t know those tricks . . . I know Charles beat Moore three times. But a fighter has to prove himnself every time. On Moore’s best night, I’m going with Moore.”

“Jones is the most athletically-gifted one in the group. He would have given all of the others trouble . . . The question about Roy is his chin. He’d be beating a lot of these guys until he got hit. Then, who knows . . . Roy wouldn’t have been able to fight these guys with his hands behind his back.”

“Some of these fighters – especially Jones and Foster – had questionable chins. And all of them could whack. So the guys with questionable chins could have gotten knocked out at any point.”

“I don’t care who you were. If you weighed 175 pounds and Bob Foster hit you on the chin, you were in trouble . . . Foster lost to some great fighters. How many great fighters did he beat?”

“People don’t realize how clever Michael Spinks was. He was old-school in a lot of ways.”

“Billy Conn fought 76 times. He got stopped by some guy right after he turned pro. And the only fighter who knocked him out after that was Joe Louis. Most of the guys on your list could punch. But none of them could punch as hard as Joe Louis . . . Billy Conn had great footwork. He knew how to control distance with his legs, and his legs were great. Styles make fights, and Conn had the style to beat a lot of these guys . . . Conn weighed in at 169 pounds and was ahead of Joe Louis on the scorecards after twelve rounds.”

“Kovalev hasn’t shown that he’s ready for this level of competition yet.”

“I love Matthew Saad Muhammad. He was the most courageous fighter I‘ve ever seen, but I don’t see him doing well in this tournament. He took what he had to take and always came back punching. But he was too easy to hit, and I don’t think he could have taken the punishment that these guys were capable of handing out . . . Saad Muhammad was life and death with opponents who weren’t nearly as good as the fighters on this list.”

“They’re in good company; all of them.”

Charts #1 and #2 contain underlying statistical data from the tournament.

Chart #1 shows that the trainers, matchmakers, media representatives, and historians all ranked Charles in the #1 slot. There was a divergence of opinion after that.

Chart #2 shows how the panelists thought each fighter would have fared against the other seven.

chart1 febd7

 

 

chart2 81ebd

 

Thomas Hauser can be reached by email at thauser@rcn.com. His most recent book (A Hurting Sport: An Inside Look at Another Year in Boxing) was published by the University of Arkansas Press.

 

Check out the latest news and videos at The Boxing Channel

COMMENTS

-Radam G :

Nice sweet science writing. And no dumb-@$$ demagoguery and sneaky dogma trying to be peddled as science. T-Ha is da MAN! Holla!


-Kid Blast :

Like many greats who hang on too long, Charles faded into obscurity, especially after his last draining fight against Marciano. And from 1955 until his retirement in 1959, he fought twenty four times, winning only ten which, of course, diluted to some extent his legacy. However, nothing can ever dilute the following encapsulation reflecting, in part, the incredible level of his opposition: Rocky Marciano (twice) IBHF/WBHF Joe Louis IBHF/WBHF Jersey Joe Walcott (four times) IBHF/WBHF Archie Moore (thrice) IBHF/WBHF Rex Layne (thrice) Joe Maxim (five times) IBHF/WBHF Jimmy Bivins (four times) IBHF/WBHF Charley Burley (twice) IBHF/WBHF Lloyd Marshall (thrice) WBHF Gus Lesnevich WBHF Ken Overlin (twice) Elmer Ray (twice) Harold Johnson IBHF/WBHF Bob Satterfield


-dino da vinci :

While I agree wholeheartedly with Charles being labeled Light-Heavy King, I'm not so sure about the label "boxing expert". Please explain to me what constitutes a boxing expert. How many exist in the world, what actually qualifies someone for such a lofty title. Anyone?


-stormcentre :

A boxing expert is (surely) someone that knows every iota (iota = every single minute amount) of the boxing game.
->http://www.thesweetscience.com/forums/showthread.php?13547-WTF!-Lil-Kim-is-Pregnant-And-Word-is-That-Money-May-is-The-Big-Poppa&p=44182&viewfull=1#post44182 Or, it could be someone that understands the game and all its nuances well enough to reliably and regularly profit from it. Or, it simply could be an unobtainable threshold that many dream of. I must admit it the scale of the question really is too much for this tortured and
Stormy soul. :) :)


-Radam G :

While I agree wholeheartedly with Charles being labeled Light-Heavy King, I'm not so sure about the label "boxing expert". Please explain to me what constitutes a boxing expert. How many exist in the world, what actually qualifies someone for such a lofty title. Anyone?
Wonderful request. I've always wanted to know those experts. and I have always instead referred to them as "so-called (and so alleged) experts." Holla!


-stormcentre :

A boxing expert is (surely) someone that knows every iota (iota = every single minute amount) of the boxing game.
->http://www.thesweetscience.com/forums/showthread.php?13547-WTF!-Lil-Kim-is-Pregnant-And-Word-is-That-Money-May-is-The-Big-Poppa&p=44182&viewfull=1#post44182 Or, it could be someone that understands the game and all its nuances well enough to reliably and regularly profit from it. Or, it simply could be an unobtainable threshold that many dream of. I must admit it the scale of the question really is too much for this tortured and
Stormy soul. :) :)


-Kid Blast :

Dino, great question. I have been following boxing in one way or another for close to 65 years. I write, I am in one of the Ring Halls of Fame, and I nominate fighters for the IBHOF. I know a bad uppercut when I see one and I know all the levels of defense. I have reviewed more video footage than there is video footage. Do I consider myself an expert? Heavens no!!!! God no!!!
The closest thing I have ever seen to a 100% boxing expert is Emmanuel Steward. The worse thing I have seen is one writer calling other writers experts, particularly when they are all in the BWAA or in the same NYC Clique. That is especially bile-inducing. Referring to Rafael as an expert makes my stomach rumble--no pun intended. I will say that
Paulie Malignaggi, aside from his often strange out-of- the -ring-behavior, knows his stuff and he is somebody I listen to carefully. Historians, by definition, are not experts. The late Johnny Bos knew boxing as well. Often, posters know more than anyone else. Stormcentre is an example. There is a guy on ESB named TARK who knows as much as anyone I have ever read. The trainer John Bray is pretty savvy as well. As for Hauser, he is a superb writer, but insofar as knowing much about the in's and out's of boxing, he will always need a panel of "experts" The entire dilemma is one orgy of cliques and self-congratulatory drivel. IMHO.


-stormcentre :

Thanks for the kind words KB. Not many people here have kind things to say about me. But that's fine because not only do I know the (real) reason why - but it doesn't change the fact that I still love them all. :) I agree Paulie usually knows his stuff, and there's no doubt that he always comes across as an extremely pensive guy when it comes to boxing. I believe that's because (like most in the sport) he has not quite achieved what he set out to accomplish in boxing, and as a result Paulie has constantly thought about how to bridge that gap before it's too long. And along the way he's probably realised that his knowledge is just as good as most other well respected analysts and also that boxing can be subjected to reductionism theory and also a few others. Big up to M1 for getting Paulie on board, as his stuff is usually top notch. OK, to Emmanuel Steward. How could anyone disagree with your comment about him. There's no doubt that he was an expert in his field. I think more than anyone Steward is the guy that knows how to;

A) Explain things - complex or otherwise - related to boxing that, at first, may seem intangible . . . . in simple, tangible and elegant ways. B) Accurately read a fight and fighter.

Like (almost) no-one else I have heard. The sole exception (for me) is a Russian amateur coach (not listed below) I met years ago, worked with, and currently know now; whom in my opinion is as close to a boxing expert and/or boxing genius as you can get - especially in terms of understanding the sport's skills, psychology, strategy and tactics. The proof (for me) is in how he can do most of what Steward did above, and also how many guys he has trained - from early amateur days - that have gone on to become professional regional and/or world champions. If ever I wanted to be sure that I had analysed all there was and that I also adopted the correct strategy, in relation to a fight - particularly with international tourneys and therefore potentially foreign styles and tactical problems of sporting combat - he was the guy I would always go back to. Doesn't mean Steward is any less an expert in my opinion though. As far as experts - at actually the art of boxing/fighting and being able to (speech impediments aside) impart that knowledge (by that I mean guys that know all the moves regardless of whether they were outright successful all the time or not; and not necessarily people that understand other aspects of the game like its business, machinations, and the sports science aspects . .et al) - go; I offer the following (incomplete) list that is not necessarily in any order pf preference . . . 1) Bredan Ingle. 2) James Toney. 3) Bill Miller. 4) Bouwie Fisher. 5) Eddie Futch. 6) Michael Kozlowski 7) Eddie Mustafa Muhammad. 8) Alcides Sagarra. 9) Bernard Hopkins. 10) Nikolai Khromov. 11) Alexander Lebzyak. 12) Enzo Calzaghe. 13) Nacho Berenstein 14) Dino da Vinci
Storm. :) :)


-Kid Blast :

All good. In the end, an expert IMO is someone who knows what he doesn't know.


-stormcentre :

Is that really possible ("to know what you don't know") for mere mortals that don't exist in the spirit world and are incapable of astral travelling? :)


-Kid Blast :

How about someone who knows that he doesn't know everything?


-stormcentre :

Oh, yep. That's a good start; for (at least) learning. :)


-deepwater2 :

Thanks for the kind words KB. Not many people here have kind things to say about me. But that's fine because not only do I know the (real) reason why - but it doesn't change the fact that I still love them all. :) I agree Paulie usually knows his stuff, and there's no doubt that he always comes across as an extremely pensive guy when it comes to boxing. I believe that's because (like most in the sport) he has not quite achieved what he set out to accomplish in boxing, and as a result Paulie has constantly thought about how to bridge that gap before it's too long. And along the way he's probably realised that his knowledge is just as good as most other well respected analysts and also that boxing can be subjected to reductionism theory and also a few others. Big up to M1 for getting Paulie on board, as his stuff is usually top notch. OK, to Emmanuel Steward. How could anyone disagree with your comment about him. There's no doubt that he was an expert in his field. I think more than anyone Steward is the guy that knows how to;

A) Explain things - complex or otherwise - related to boxing that, at first, may seem intangible . . . . in simple, tangible and elegant ways. B) Accurately read a fight and fighter.

Like (almost) no-one else I have heard. The sole exception (for me) is a Russian amateur coach (not listed below) I met years ago, worked with, and currently know now; whom in my opinion is as close to a boxing expert and/or boxing genius as you can get - especially in terms of understanding the sport's skills, psychology, strategy and tactics. The proof (for me) is in how he can do most of what Steward did above, and also how many guys he has trained - from early amateur days - that have gone on to become professional regional and/or world champions. If ever I wanted to be sure that I had analysed all there was and that I also adopted the correct strategy, in relation to a fight - particularly with international tourneys and therefore potentially foreign styles and tactical problems of sporting combat - he was the guy I would always go back to. Doesn't mean Steward is any less an expert in my opinion though. As far as experts - at actually the art of boxing/fighting and being able to (speech impediments aside) impart that knowledge (by that I mean guys that know all the moves regardless of whether they were outright successful all the time or not; and not necessarily people that understand other aspects of the game like its business, machinations, and the sports science aspects . .et al) - go; I offer the following (incomplete) list that is not necessarily in any order pf preference . . . 1) Bredan Ingle. 2) James Toney. 3) Bill Miller. 4) Bouwie Fisher. 5) Eddie Futch. 6) Michael Kozlowski 7) Eddie Mustafa Muhammad. 8) Alcides Sagarra. 9) Bernard Hopkins. 10) Nikolai Khromov. 11) Alexander Lebzyak. 12) Enzo Calzaghe. 13) Nacho Berenstein 14) Dino DaVinci
Storm. :) :)
I would like to add Bob Jackson and cut-man Al Gavin to your list. Those two are like an encyclopedia about the fight game. I miss seeing Boz at the fights in his mink coat. Aww who isn't kind to you on here? I'll protect you old man. Just kidding. Don't get emotional. On a serious note, I hear a contingent of master boxers from down under are coming to compete at Gleason's in June. Are you involved with that?


-Kid Blast :

Al Gavin - excellent


-Kid Blast :

Dino. what do you think an expert is? Thanks


-stormcentre :

I would like to add Bob Jackson and cut-man Al Gavin to your list. Those two are like an encyclopedia about the fight game. I miss seeing Boz at the fights in his mink coat.
(1) Aww who isn't kind to you on here? I'll protect you old man. Just kidding.
(2) Don't get emotional. On a serious note, I hear a contingent of master boxers from down under are coming to compete at Gleason's in June. Are you involved with that?

(1); People are always mean to me and it not only hurts my feelings - but also leaves me perplexed as I don't know how best to respond or defend myself. :)
(2) Doesn't that give me the right to collapse into an emotional wreck and start reciting how incredible/magical all my abilities and potions are? Seriously, I have answered your above post, over here too . . .
->http://www.thesweetscience.com/forums/showthread.php?25379-March-12th-Sees-The-Return-of-Zab-Judah&p=94740&viewfull=1#post94740 :) :)


-deepwater2 :


(1); People are always mean to me and it not only hurts my feelings - but also leaves me perplexed as I don't know how best to respond or defend myself. :)
(2) Doesn't that give me the right to collapse into an emotional wreck and start reciting how incredible/magical all my abilities and potions are? Seriously, I have answered your above post, over here too . . .
->http://www.thesweetscience.com/forums/showthread.php?25379-March-12th-Sees-The-Return-of-Zab-Judah&p=94740&viewfull=1#post94740 :) :)
These days in America, there are places called "safe spaces" for adults that can't handle the different viewpoints or ideas. These so called adults need a place to retreat to when their ideas are challenged. Counselors are provided to these people. It is bizarre. The future looks bleak when witnessing this. I think that , you, Stormcenter, would not ever need a "safe place " to hide from other view points. You should take it as a compliment. If you can google " safe spaces" and get ready to laugh. Maybe I will wind up boxing one of coach Mike's mysterious Russians he works with. You never know.


-ArneK. :

It seems that we're talking about two different kinds of experts. One type of expert is a student of the history of boxing, but to qualify as an expert he must be more than well-read; he must be able to separate the wheat from the chaff (there was a lot of nonsense written about antiquarian prizefighters and a lot of false information seeped into the literature -- and still does; do not believe everything you read on wikipedia). The late Hank Kaplan was considered tops in this category; a historian's historian. I'm curious to know if Kid Blast has met him. The second type of expert is a man like the late Emanuel Steward who knew the game from an insider's perspective, and could analyze a boxer's strengths and weaknesses and bring out the best in the fighters under his wing. One can quibble with the expertise of some of the people on Hauser's panel, but I think he did a good job of assembling a well-rounded council.


-Radam G :

It seems that we're talking about two different kinds of experts. One type of expert is a student of the history of boxing, but to qualify as an expert he must be more than well-read; he must be able to separate the wheat from the chaff (there was a lot of nonsense written about antiquarian prizefighters and a lot of false information seeped into the literature -- and still does; do not believe everything you read on wikipedia). The late Hank Kaplan was considered tops in this category; a historian's historian. I'm curious to know if Kid Blast has met him. The second type of expert is a man like the late Emanuel Steward who knew the game from an insider's perspective, and could analyze a boxer's strengths and weaknesses and bring out the best in the fighters under his wing. One can quibble with the expertise of some of the people on Hauser's panel, but I think he did a good job of assembling a well-rounded council.
Pugs would never use the word "Expert" for the likes of GBG Manny Steward. Pugs use such terms as "arch-master teacher," "super coach, "master Trainer and guru." In the innercircle of the hardcore boxing peeps, I seldom heard the word expert use to describe a coach. fighter or talking head. The best of the best talking heads are simply called analysts. The best of the best writers are simply called master boxing writers, or maybe profession boxing journalist or pro writer. "Expert" is probably "Johnnie come lately" with the switch from newspaper copy about boxing over to mainstream cyberspace copy nowadays. Holla!


-Kid Blast :

It seems that we're talking about two different kinds of experts. One type of expert is a student of the history of boxing, but to qualify as an expert he must be more than well-read; he must be able to separate the wheat from the chaff (there was a lot of nonsense written about antiquarian prizefighters and a lot of false information seeped into the literature -- and still does; do not believe everything you read on wikipedia). The late Hank Kaplan was considered tops in this category; a historian's historian. I'm curious to know if Kid Blast has met him. The second type of expert is a man like the late Emanuel Steward who knew the game from an insider's perspective, and could analyze a boxer's strengths and weaknesses and bring out the best in the fighters under his wing. One can quibble with the expertise of some of the people on Hauser's panel, but I think he did a good job of assembling a well-rounded council.
Good points Arnie, A minor problem as I see it is that many are fellow BWAA types and/or friends of his. Aside from a few, historians in my view are not experts. All they do is verify the accuracy of records and maybe study some grainy footage or read some old newspaper accounts. That's more research than it is expertise. One that he mentions, Adam Pollack, is an exception. Teddy Atlas is a bit of everything. Trainer, fighter, historian, commentator, speaker. Much as I am not a big fan of his, I have to grant him "expert" status. But Steward was everything Teddy is and more. Manny was both old and new school. Teddy is more myopic and is old school. Yes, I knew Hank Kaplan and have photos on my Facebook page with Hank who was one of a kind. He was truly something as was the late Ralph Citro. They have Hank's archives in a library somewhere in NYC and they can be accessed. I have a great friend named Charlie Dwyer from Portsmouth, RI who just retired as a top pro referee. We had lunch together yesterday in Boston (Dorchester) with about 35 other ex-boxers, writers, referees. Charlie fought Ken Norton three times during his days in the Marines and also will have a part in the upcoming movie about Vinny Paz. Reason I bring this up is that Charlie probably knows more about the in's and out's of boxing than anyone I have ever met. Yesterday someone mentioned a fight, and Charlie said "OH, that was Joe Lopes." The guy is incredible. He is an expert. I mentioned Gaspar Ortega and he responded about the time Gaspar beat Al Duarte in 1962. Then we both went over and talked to Tony DeMarco who is well into his 80's but is sharp as a tack and hard as a rock. The knowledge that can be gained by just being a listener in gathering like this is deep and lasting.


-stormcentre :

These days in America, there are places called "safe spaces" for adults that can't handle the different viewpoints or ideas. These so called adults need a place to retreat to when their ideas are challenged. Counselors are provided to these people. It is bizarre. The future looks bleak when witnessing this.
(1) I think that , you, Stormcenter, would not ever need a "safe place " to hide from other view points. You should take it as a compliment. If you can google " safe spaces" and get ready to laugh.
(2) Maybe I will wind up boxing one of coach Mike's mysterious Russians he works with. You never know.
If I may . . . . 2 things in response . . .
(1); You might just be right there. Plus, fact is, that I am also becoming more tolerant of, and interested in, *other people's views; as I mature. Sometimes I will even give *it to them before they even release it; as a means of both supporting the fact and respect. :)
(2) Good luck with that endeavor. :) :)


-brownsugar :

I dont envy the "experts" who are burdened with the task of creating these lists. Its an epic and monumental assignment to catalog and rank a sport that is both as subjective as it is quanitative,... Its like you have to be able to score and fighter like a rythmic dancing judge and crunch stats like a fantasy football league fanatic, while allowing room for the Paul Bunyonesque tales and urban legends told around the locker rooms to in fill the gaps en lieu of having actual verifiable data on others. And then where do you put the guys who have extrordinary days blowing out mythical talent in multiple weight classes on some days while incurring 35 losses along the way....... some of them to rank journeymen and nobodies on other days. Take a guy like Archie Moore. He knew every trick in the book, had wicked power in both hands, was crafty...... and could stage some deceptive come from behind victories using his remarkable boxing IQ. But I think a well rounded boxer with excellent mobility like Spinks could have beaten him on footspeed and activity alone while denying Moore access to his best tools, his cunningness and deceptiveness. ( with Moore scowling at him from a distance while getting popped with the jab) My only criticism would be to move Spinks and Foster up the list, ....way up the list, and drop Charles a few notches.... he wasnt THAT good. And where is Dwight Qawi?


-brownsugar :

Also guys just dont stand directly in front of each other for as long and as close as they used to which drastically changed the dynamics of the game, in fact, fighters stopped getting calliflower ears over 50 years ago. A fighter like Chris Algieri might have beaten a few of those old legends on movement alone. Perhaps that's a bit of an exaggeration, but a lot of these lists dont take into consideration the changing trends, like rehydration changes, 12 rounds vs 15, and the refusal to acknowledge that size is becoming a valid metric where heavyweights are concerned, stop telling that me a 189 lb Marciano would have knocked out Klitschko.


-stormcentre :

I dont envy the "experts" who are burdened with the task of creating these lists. Its an epic and monumental assignment to catalog and rank a sport that is both as subjective as it is quanitative,... Its like you have to be able to score and fighter like a rythmic dancing judge and crunch stats like a fantasy football league fanatic, while allowing room for the Paul Bunyonesque tales and urban legends told around the locker rooms to in fill the gaps en lieu of having actual verifiable data on others. And then where do you put the guys who have extrordinary days blowing out mythical talent in multiple weight classes on some days while incurring 35 losses along the way....... some of them to rank journeymen and nobodies on other days. Take a guy like Archie Moore. He knew every trick in the book, had wicked power in both hands, was crafty...... and could stage some deceptive come from behind victories using his remarkable boxing IQ. But I think a well rounded boxer with excellent mobility like Spinks could have beaten him on footspeed and activity alone while denying Moore access to his best tools, his cunningness and deceptiveness. ( with Moore scowling at him from a distance while getting popped with the jab) My only criticism would be to move Spinks and Foster up the list, ....way up the list, and drop Charles a few notches.... he wasnt THAT good. And where is Dwight Qawi?
I almost put Archie Moore on my list. But my list was a list more of the expertise in the areas I defined in that post (#8). Rather than those (I think) you do (which - to me - seems to be more about boxing greats). However, on that criteria (boxing greats), if I have interpreted it right, I agree . . Moore should be there. In fact, he could probably impart knowledge that's, at least, on par with Toney, Miller, Fisher, Mustafa Muhammad, Bernstein, and Futch. As an adjunct; I actually think Toney was a more technically complete fighter though.

Even though, in my opinion, he wasted some of his talent and opportunities and was probably not as successful - record-wise - as Moore; whom is still one of my all time favourites and someone I deliberately left off the list due to the fact that I thought his presence would blur the lines between my expert criteria and that I interpret yours to be.

So to that end and with respect to those I left of the list deliberately and not; I revert to my post #8's caveat . . ""I offer the following (incomplete) list . . . . . ."" I did deliberately leave many "experts" out because I was pretty sure you guys would add your own; possibly some that I had never heard of too. Ray Arcel was another one I deliberately left out. Check that guy out. Tell you what though . . . . it's going to take some doing before someone comes along that can provide colour and expert commentary as well as Steward did. His commentary was almost pugilistic poetry. In the sense that, not only was it expertly appropriate, accurate, and delivered in easy to understand terms that didn't in any way distract from the action - but also in the way that (unlike Foreman's or Lewis') you simply felt you should trust, and subject yourself to, it. Just as you do when you read/hear all great poetry. That you/we do this, is one fundamental reason why some poetry, lyrics, and/or songs, and their emotional architectures sometimes seem to invisibly pass right through the walls of your cognitive critique assessments that our theatres of consciousness construct without seeming to be subjected to all the perfunctory quality assurance tests that we consciously and subliminally run . . . . . . whilst others simply bounce off the walls and sound alarm bells at the very first door. Perhaps Paulie is his natural, or better put, only real successor. :) :)


-Radam G :

It seems that we're talking about two different kinds of experts. One type of expert is a student of the history of boxing, but to qualify as an expert he must be more than well-read; he must be able to separate the wheat from the chaff (there was a lot of nonsense written about antiquarian prizefighters and a lot of false information seeped into the literature -- and still does; do not believe everything you read on wikipedia). The late Hank Kaplan was considered tops in this category; a historian's historian. I'm curious to know if Kid Blast has met him. The second type of expert is a man like the late Emanuel Steward who knew the game from an insider's perspective, and could analyze a boxer's strengths and weaknesses and bring out the best in the fighters under his wing. One can quibble with the expertise of some of the people on Hauser's panel, but I think he did a good job of assembling a well-rounded council.
I made a few calls, asked around and looked at old stories and films. And "boxing authority" is more prominent than the lofty, catch 22 ""expert." Holla!


-brownsugar :

I almost put Archie Moore on my list. But my list was a list more of the expertise in the areas I defined in that post (#8). Rather than those (I think) you do (which - to me - seems to be more about boxing greats). However, on that criteria (boxing greats), if I have interpreted it right, I agree . . Moore should be there. In fact, he could probably impart knowledge that's, at least, on par with Toney, Miller, Fisher, Mustafa Muhammad, Bernstein, and Futch. As an adjunct; I actually think Toney was a more technically complete fighter though.

Even though, in my opinion, he wasted some of his talent and opportunities and was probably not as successful - record-wise - as Moore; whom is still one of my all time favourites and someone I deliberately left off the list due to the fact that I thought his presence would blur the lines between my expert criteria and that I interpret yours to be.

So to that end and with respect to those I left of the list deliberately and not; I revert to my post #8's caveat . . ""I offer the following (incomplete) list . . . . . ."" I did deliberately leave many "experts" out because I was pretty sure you guys would add your own; possibly some that I had never heard of too. Ray Arcel was another one I deliberately left out. Check that guy out. Tell you what though . . . . it's going to take some doing before someone comes along that can provide colour and expert commentary as well as Steward did. His commentary was almost pugilistic poetry. In the sense that, not only was it expertly appropriate, accurate, and delivered in easy to understand terms that didn't in any way distract from the action - but also in the way that (unlike Foreman's or Lewis') you simply felt you should trust, and subject yourself to, it. Just as you do when you read/hear all great poetry. That you/we do this, is one fundamental reason why some poetry, lyrics, and/or songs, and their emotional architectures sometimes seem to invisibly pass right through the walls of your cognitive critique assessments that our theatres of consciousness construct without seeming to be subjected to all the perfunctory quality assurance tests that we consciously and subliminally run . . . . . . whilst others simply bounce off the walls and sound alarm bells at the very first door. Perhaps Paulie is his natural, or better put, only real successor. :) :)
Very well said.


-Kid Blast :

I made a few calls, asked around and looked at old stories and films. And "boxing authority" is more prominent than the lofty, catch 22 ""expert." Holla!
Well there it is, then. Thanks for schooling us.


-Kid Blast :

Any time you put up a list, you ask for trouble. You will get bombed. It will be assaulted, vilified, drilled, and defiled. And if you dare try to defend it. you will get brutalized. It's the nature of a list. Everyone has their own list. If I listed my top five rounds of all time, I would quickly get hammered and corrected. But in the end, these are just different points of views with really no correct answer. Just well-researched opinions.


-brownsugar :

Any time you put up a list, you ask for trouble. You will get bombed. It will be assaulted, vilified, drilled, and defiled. And if you dare try to defend it. you will get brutalized. It's the nature of a list. Everyone has their own list. If I listed my top five rounds of all time, I would quickly get hammered and corrected. But in the end, these are just different points of views with really no correct answer. Just well-researched opinions.
Lol.... the messenger will surely get flogged after their countless hours of meticulous reseach.....


-stormcentre :

I can agree, but also . . . I can say . . . ""Not at all folks"" For this reason . . . . History and forum statistics clearly shows (and substantiates for) us that anytime the magician in question (i) makes a bold/premature claim, (ii) retorts wildly in response to others, or (iii) is offended by other's claims; the reasons usually (respectively) are . . .

1) It's untrue. 2) It's true and/or an exposing/revealing experience. 3) See point 2.

See? Please - anyone - prove me wrong. I dare you. Until dat happen . .. . let's keep having fun, laughing, and rocking on.
Storm. :) :)


-stormcentre :

I can agree, but also . . . I can say . . . ""Not at all folks"" For this reason . . . . History and forum statistics clearly shows (and substantiates for) us that anytime the magician in question (i) makes a bold/premature claim, (ii) retorts wildly in response to others, or (iii) is offended by other's claims; the reasons usually (respectively) are . . .

1) It's untrue. 2) It's true and/or an exposing/revealing experience. 3) See point 2.

See? Please - anyone - prove me wrong. I dare you. Until dat happen . .. . let's keep having fun, laughing, and rocking on.
Storm. :) :)
PS: Check out these guys (synthesized) laughing (5mins and 2 secs) . . . even they know what's up with the joke.


-stormcentre :

Lol.... the messenger will surely get flogged after their countless hours of meticulous reseach.....
:)