Originally Posted by Senya13
Don't rip my words out of context. I said they viewed heavyweight division as a whole as bad all the time, filled with undeserving, slow, skillless, plodding, out-of-shape fighters. Again, not all of them, but most of them were seen as such.
I'm not. You said both of those things. You said that Ali and Frazier were only in one fight that mattered - which is nonsense.
Frazier did win the biggest fight between them though, that is true.
Look up how Norton was viewed before first Ali's fight and for a while after that, and he was seen as no better than, say, Glen Johnson, if not worse - a journeyman, B-level fighter at best. The hype made him IBHoF worthy all a sudden. Had we had a time machine and transfered the people who voted him in (ie voted an ATG) back into 1970s, they'd be turned over to mental hospital for such claims.
Still, he's much more respected than that these days, isn't he? And he very much proved himself in fights with Holmes and Ali. If you ask people at the beginning of a fighter's career, before his four career defining fights, if be belongs in the IBHOF, of course they are going to say no.
Glen Johnson himself is no longer viewed as the journeyman he was seen as before he KO'd Roy Jones, so you kind of make this point for me. Painting Norton as a poor win because of how he was seen before he boxed the important part of his career is ludicrous.
I fully understand that the Ring magazine's opinion wasn't the only one that should be considered. But they were similiar to a lot of other publications and experts in that they might praise other weight divisions as deep and rich, comes another era, they pointed out that it was weak and lacking talent. With heavyweights, there almost never was any praise. Not because they didn't like the division, they spent most of the time talking about heavyweights in their ****ytical write-ups and gossips, it was simply that - bad compared to other weights.
If you're trying to tell me the HW division is less historically deep than the lightweight division, we already agree.
If you're trying to tell me that it is so shallow that no fighter to emerge from it can be considered great, I can only tell you that I thoroughly disagree. I personally haven't really seen boxing done much better than career HW Joe Louis did it and guys like Ali, Lewis, Holyfield and Frazier look absolutely exceptional to me too.
As I said in something like the second post of this go-around, the difference in our perceptions of the HW division is likely the main reason we see things so differently.
Superb for a heavyweight, that's at least debatable. Compared to the very best fighters from other divisions his resume is awful. And head to head he didn't show himself *that* great (as compared to Duran, for example) to be deserving such high ratings on a P4P basis.
Well if we look at the five best opponents Duran faced excluding shot perfromances:
Leoanrd (win, loss)
DeJesus (loss, win, win)
We see he is 3-5. If we doe the same with Ali
We see he is 7-2, a much, much better return. Yes, Leonard is better than Frazier, Hagler is better than Foreman, Benitez is better than Liston, Hearns is better than Norton and DeJesus is probably better than Patterson. But so what? Ali is a winner
, Duran, in this regard, is a loser. This is natural in facing a higher level of competition, but it's a fact that Ali did better against the greats he met. That fact holds a lot of weight with a lot of people, naturally enough.