Originally Posted by mattdonnellon
Sorry Boilermaker, I dont see it at all. I was a Foreman fan before he ever beat Frazier and was rooting for him and as a H2H fighter he would be a nightmare for some really good champions. His second coming is the most impressive of any HW ever, granted.
The knock on him is this, Ali, Young, Lyle and with hindsight perhaps Peralta. Too one diminsional, lacking smarts to preserve his dubious stamina and mental strenght. The second coming had all these but lacked the wild abandon that made the earlier George great. You cant morph the two Foremans any more than you can do it for Ali or Holyfield or anybody else.
I understand and agree with what you say about one dimensional etc.
But the point is, could any other fighter that lived do what George Foreman did (or near enough). As i pointed out the domination of Frazier and Norton alone is impressive. I am not even sure i would pick anyone to repeat such dominating performances against these two fighters. (in Fraziers case he really did it twice, so it certainly wasnt a fluke, as much as people talk about styles). Tyson, Dempsey, Liston or Louis might be a chance, but would any one really give them much of a chance? Right away you are limiting the quest to find somone to repeat what he did to 4 or 5 people.
Of the handful of people that are going to b eat and dominate Frazier and Norton, how many of these would go on to have the Ali that Foreman fought, out on their feet (in what was an uncharacteristically bad performance), this takes more of those 4 or 5 people out of the equation. Certainly, Liston at the least would be unlikely to trouble Ali much.
then the killer, of those guys who can do this, how many could take 10 years off and then come back competitive. None, i would have thought. Joe Louis is the best chance, but could he survive and be competitive against fighters after such a layoff, i dont think i would put money on it. It is not as if the 90s was a weak era.
I guess, when you think about it, the whole lot turns on how you view a loss to one of the greatest fighter of all time affects foreman's legacy. Imagine if Foreman had ducked Ali and instead retired for a year, he would rank as a pretty clear no 1 of all time. It is funny sometimes, how some fights demonstrate dominance. Eg Louis over Schmelling II, Lewis over McCall II, Ali over Foreman, Jeffries over Fitz etc Yet other losses/wins mean far less in the scheme of things. Eg Norton over Ali I, Choynski over Johnson, McCall over Lewis I etc.
Matt, which fighters would you back to repeat the wins that Foreman had. It is funny because i do agree with most of what you say, but when you think about it, Foreman is a head to head nightmare, but it is arguably perceptions of his head to head abilities (slow, one dimensial, stamina problems etc) which override his record and legacy and actually downgrade his atg ranking many times.