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Old 01-17-2013, 11:28 PM   #102
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Default Re: Riddick Bowe vs Vitali Klitschko

Quote:
Originally Posted by DrMo View Post
Its more convincing than the reverse. What happened when Vitali faced a skilled, big guy prepared to go to war with him? He lasted 6 rounds & was completely ****ed by the end.

Bowe in 1992 is a far superior fighter to Lewis in 2003, he is also far more effective at the style & adept in the tactics which Lennox employed to beat Vitali.
Will agree with you to a point, but even at Lewis's age and level of conditioning (which gets a little overblown I think) he still had all the smarts, experience and caginess that he'd earned over a lifetime of fighting most of the who's who in one of the deepest heavyweight eras in history.

Lewis was always a much smarter fighter than Bowe and was able to adapt mid-fight to get the better of his opponents. Against Vitali he was outgunned and getting beaten to the punch till the third, when he surprised Vit by darting forward and catching him with the overhand right at the start of the round. That wasn't just blind aggression, it was a calculated move designed to catch Vit sleeping and it worked. He showed a lot of similar moves throughout the rest of the fight, as well as a nice mixture of outside fighting and brawling to rough Klitschko up.

Superficially, these are the things Bowe does well, but the difference between Lewis and Bowe is that Bowe was a one note fighter who fought on instinct and heart, whilst Lewis was a boxer who understood the tools he had and the best way to use them to win fights.

Lewis beat Vit with a mixture of heart, power and ringsmarts. Bowe had plenty of the first, quite a bit of the second, and very little of the third, and that would be the difference here.

Quote:
Originally Posted by DrMo View Post
Early doors Evander was getting bashed up on the outside by Bowe's jab, he tried to press the action inside but got beaten up even worse.
Really? I don't see that at all. I see Holyfield trading with Bowe on the outside, doubling and tripling his jabs and beating him to the punch with his superior footwork and explosive handspeed. I see Bowe landing a few heavy jabs but not dominating or controlling range. When Evander decided to close, Bowe was only too willing to stand there are engage. The times Bowe himself engaged, he literally just kept plodding forward until he got into Evander's phonebooth. There was very little setting up with the jab, footwork, cornering. It was Evander dictating the texture of the fight those early rounds, not Bowe. Sure, he got beaten down in the end, but that was due to Bowe's size and strength, not his superior skills.

Quote:
Originally Posted by DrMo View Post
Bowe loved coming forward & letting his hands go, anyone prepared to stand up to him got a beating. He could jab from distance, throw powerful overhands & hooks when in range & rip uppercuts & bodyshots in close.
Vitali wouldn't stand in a phonebox with him. He'd box him the way he fought every come forward slugger after Lennox. Bowe would be forced to trade jabs with Vitali and I don't see that going well for him. Vitali isn't fast handed but it wasn't speed that bothered Bowe but consistency. Vitali has always been the far more consistent and mentally focussed fighter. Bowe could maintain consistency for short periods, but he'd always go back to his brawling inside style after a while. He was also incredibly easy to hit, and Vitali has the sort of raw strength that would keep him at bay.

Quote:
Originally Posted by DrMo View Post
Agree with some of that, but not the last sentence. Virtually none of Bowe's KOs came from the inside, he was always more effective with a little more room to get leverage on his shots.
It was nonetheless where he did the majority of his work when he could.

Quote:
Originally Posted by DrMo View Post
In the majority of Bowe's fights his opponents were unwilling to engage & tried to use lateral movement to stay away from the big guy. He relied on his jab a lot in all of those fights.

I dont know why there seems to be this idea on ESB that the only way for a big HW to fight is like Wlad or an older Lewis (both trained by Steward) If a big guy can fight effectively on the inside why should he be uber-cautious & rely so heavily on a jab & grab strategy.
It's not the only way for a big man to fight, but it's definitely the smartest and most effective if he wants to maximise his advantages and have a long career. Bowe made things a hell of a lot harder for himself than he had to, and gave his opponents opportunities that they shouldn't have had. Had he fought a disciplined fight and stayed behind his jab he'd have been a much tougher prospect for anyone, but he was too willing to let his heart do the talking and rely on others to do the same.

Quote:
Originally Posted by DrMo View Post
Lewis relied on his jab a lot more but I wouldnt qualify it as being superior.
It depends on what you're looking for. For me Lennox had the harder, more versatile and more well-timed jab, and he knew precisely how to use it to assert his dominance in the ring. Bowe's was a little snappier, but it was inconsistent and he didn't use it with anywhere near the same effectiveness throughout the course of a fight. If he did then he would have handled Golota with ease that first time, regardless of his level of conditioning, the way Holmes and, yes, Lennox were able to do at the tail end of their careers.

Quote:
Originally Posted by DrMo View Post
The Biggs fight was only 2 years into his career & isnt the ideal showcase for Bowe at his best. Gonzalez was Bowe's last serious training camp (he really hated him from the amateur days, JLG had beaten Bowe & Lewis btw) & his last great performance.

I'd take the Bowe from 92/93 over any version of Vitali. Too skilled, too powerful & too intense.

The ony time Vitali's been in deep water he drowned after 6 rounds & Bowe would drag him to places he's never been before. I'll take the battle-proven Bowe over Vitali every day of the week.
I'd say you laid out a good case for believing so. I can certainly see Bowe doing all these things and taking the win. However, at the risk of repeating myself, I'd say that Vitali's consistency and adeptness at maintaining his range, coupled with his heavy hands and innate toughness would expose a lot of Bowe's bad habits and grind him down for a unanimous decision win.
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