Originally Posted by SuzieQ49
Why should Rocky be rated over Dempsey?
1. Rocky clearly beat better competition
The primary reason for Rocky normally ranking lower than other heavyweights (frequently below Jack Dempsey himself) isnt because of his weight, but because of the stock of his competition. Rocky didn't fight anyone noteworthy in their prime. After Rocky's fight against LaStarza (a fight that many thought he lost) Rockys next opponents was Eldridge Eatman who was coming off a 9-8 record. Tiger Lowry (60-54-9 at the time, retired 66-67) went all the way with Rocky, Kid Mitchell and Art Henri to follow all had losing records as well.
2. Rocky doesn't have near prime losses KO 1 to Flynn or L 4 to Willie Meehan on his resume
Your second point harks on the rebuttal I used for the first.
Rocky didn't fight anyone of notice in their prime. Dempsey did on while on his campaign. Flynn gets a lucky punch in and KO's Dempsey first round. Less than a month later, Dempsey is fighting again and who is it? Fat Boy Meehan, less than a month after a KO, Dempsey fights a guy with a winning record at 90 plus bouts- The result? A lost in a decision (I wonder why?). Dempsey turns right around and beats Meehan and later fittingly knocks out Flynn in no less than the 1st round on his way to becoming the the heavyweight champion.
3. Rocky defended his title against all # 1 or # 2 rated contenders, while Dempsey never fought the 2 best contenders of his whole era(tunney, wills)
Im not sure what you are getting at with your third point. Jack Dempsey came out of a three year retirement to fight and lose against Tunney twice, in 2 of his last three fights of his career. When we look at Rocky Marciano however..
If not for SuzieQ lucky punch in the 13th round Rocky was on his way to being out boxed by a 38 year old man as all judges had Walcott comfortably ahead. He goes on to defend his title against Ezzard Charles x2 (33 and goes the distance) Archie Moore (38 and knocks Rocky down in the fourth). Are these the #1 and #2 contenders you are talking about?
So Rocky accomplished more, he was much more proven against the best of his era, he was the better champion, he had less bad losses on his resume, and bigger wins on his resume.
This doesn't hold up well in an educated argument of boxing.
'If' Rocky Marciano lost one fight anywhere, we wouldn't bring him up as an All Time Great. Jack Dempsey lost 8 and is constantly recognized as one of the best. Rockys competition wasn't to shelf, Jacks was.
Rocky Marciano is over-rated as a heavyweight because of his goose-egg and Im not mad at him for it. But that doesn't make him a better boxer or heavyweight champion than Jack Dempsey.
In 1971, Nat Fleischer, perhaps boxing's most famous historian and also editor and founder of Ring magazine, named Marciano as the all-time 10th greatest Heavyweight Champion. Nat Fleischer wrote that in terms of boxing ability Marciano was "crude, wild swinging, awkward, and missed heavily. In his bout with Light Heavyweight Champion Archie Moore, for example, he missed almost two-thirds of the fifty odd punches he tossed when he had Archie against the ropes, a perfect target for the kill."
John Durant[disambiguation needed ] author of The Heavyweight Champions wrote in 1971 (pg. 123) “Critics do not rate Rocky with the great ones, like Jeffries, Johnson, Dempsey, Tunney, and Louis. He never faced top-fighters like they did. It was not Rocky’s fault, of course, that there was not much talent when he was fighting. He fought them all and that is what a champion is supposed to do.”
In December 1962, a Ring magazine poll of 40 boxing experts had Jack Dempsey rated the #1 Heavyweight of all time, with Joe Louis 2nd, Jack Johnson 3rd and Marciano 7th. Charley Rose, a historian, and John McCallum's Survey of Old Timers (survey of a group of historians and writers), rated Marciano at #8 and #9 of greatest heavyweights of all time.
In 1998, Ring named Marciano as the 6th greatest Heavyweight Champion ever. In 2002, Ring numbered Marciano at #12 on the list of the 80 Best Fighters of the Last 80 Years. In 2003, Ring rated Marciano #14 on the list of 100 greatest punchers of all time. In 2005, Marciano was named the fifth greatest heavyweight of all time by the International Boxing Research Organization. A 1977 ranking by Ring listed Marciano as the greatest Italian American fighter. In 2007, on ESPN.com's list of the 50 Greatest Boxers of All Time, Marciano was ranked #14
Just a rough fighter, cant take anything from him he is a rough fighter, Id hate to meet him in an alley...or a dark corner...
No style, no class...Im just telling you truth because you (Cosell) are trying to play him (Marciano) off as the greatest fighter of all times and he doesnt even rank with the lesser boxers of the gymnasium! He was rough and he was strong, but look what kind of punches are they (that Rocky is throwing)? Wild punches, look at em, no class no skill, hitting on top of the head..He cant whoop a great fighter who's right, he whooped an old man."
~The Greatest Boxer Ali commenting on Rocky Marciano in a title defense against Ezzard Charles in the presence of the reputable Howard Cosell.