Originally Posted by The Wanderer
Well, old Holmes also completely dominated Mercer, and like Foreman Holmes put in a quite respectable showing against Holyfield, who I think most of us could agree is a top 10 to, at worst, top 15 heavyweight all time.
But nonetheless there's an excellent point there, they weren't really beating the elite of the era, they beat kinda iffy and flawed contenders or champions who were in the right place at the right time, and sometimes they lost to iffy contenders or struggled against them, the way that Foreman needed every point to scrape by Alex Stewart and got outboxed by Tommy Morrison, of all people.
For all that we remember the 70s as Ali, Foreman, Frazier, Norton, Holmes, it also had any number of years where the top 10 contenders included Quarry, Mac Foster, Old Patterson, Jose Luis Garcia, Joe Bugner, Old Terrell, a post-Frazier Jimmy Ellis, Chuck Wepner, (who was in the Ring's top 10 in the March 74 issue and #8 the following year) etc.
I mean, how many of those guys would the old versions of Foreman and Holmes be too strong or too smart for? I think they could take care of a fair number of them, and likely put on at least respectable showings with quite a few.