Re: Who had the better Career Resume...Liston or Johnson
What really hurts Liston isn't just that he lost to Ali, big deal, every top fighter did at some point, but the fact that he quit on the stool when the going got tough, and only after 6 rounds, and then went out with a one-punch KO in the rematch. If he had tried hard for 15 and lost a decision his legacy would have been better than simply by quitting on the stool. That makes a lot of folks feel that Liston was a great front runner, and particularly good against a guy who would duke it out with him, but who could be badly frustrated by an elite cute boxer with speed and defense. That also hurts him in head-to-head with Johnson, because Jack was a defensive wizard who would have made Sonny miss and get frustrated, and all the while Jack would have talked as much as or even more smack to Sonny than Ali did. And when Sonny's face got puffed up, which it did with Ali and would have with Johnson too, then Sonny would have imploded. When Johnson lost his crown in 1915, which he had held since late 1908, it was in the 26th round. This was a 37-year-old guy with enough championship pride that he was not about to lose his title by quitting on the stool.
As for career resume, there is no way in hell that Johnson would ever have gotten a title shot in that era unless he had cleaned out the division and convinced the press and public that he was the leading contender.