Originally Posted by Unforgiven
Well, this is where I'd have my dispute with Ring magazine.
Tate had wins over Duane Bobick and Kallie Knoetze.
But Shavers was coming off a 1 round KO over Ken Norton, who had lost a very close 15-rounder to Holmes and was being lined up for rematch. I would have had Norton a solid #2 going into the Shavers fight, and when Shavers destroyed him I'd put Earnie at #2 with no qualms about having him above the guy who beat Bobick and Knoetze.
That's not taking into consideraton a huge factor and since for that matter. Who was the guy promoted by?
That factor determined the ratings. Norton was not #2. He was an independant fighter that did things on a fight by fight basis. Tate was the #2 guy and that's because he was Arum's guy. Actually Arum's other guy--Leon Spinks was still way way up there.
Holmes and Shavers were DKP guys. Earnie's form going into that title shot was the draw with Ali. Then immediately afterwards a lopsided affair with Holmes. Then ancient Norton. Nobody liked the Acorns chances in that rematch with Larry because he was older and Larry had already dominated the guy recently.