Originally Posted by Jersey Joe
I think it is a very, very strong contender. Redrooster makes a typical comment - it wasn't that dramatic. Although I can see that point of view, IMO it's not how you should judge the greatness of a KO. You can see any decent fighter do spectacular KOs on inferior fighters. They look awesome, the other guys gets knocked the f*** out etc. Does that make them great? Entertaining, great to look at yes. Great in boxing terms? No way.
You need to take account the quality of opposition. First, is he a good fighter. Second, does he have a good chin. Curry was a good fighter but with a poor chin. Hearns was a great fighter but with an average/weak chin. So knocking either of them out is not a "great KO" IMO.
A great KO requires knocking out a really good fighter with a really good chin. Once we meet that requirement, THEN we can start talking about the "drama" or aesthetics, or shock value of the KO. The other category is whether it was a genuine one-punch KO, or an accumulation of punches. IMO to be a truly great KO, it has to be one punch. We all know that once a fighter is dazed, he is ultra-vulnerable to a follow-up blow. He has no defence, guard, or anything, he is a sitting duck. Knocking a guy out with one punch is just inherently tougher, more impressive, and more dramatic than doing so with a good combination, let alone an accumulation of blows. Just as an example, I think Walcott KO Charles III was an incredible KO, and one of my favourites from a stylistic point of view, but I wouldn't rate it the greatest because Charles did not have a really solid chin at heavyweight. Respectable but not amazing, plus he did actually get up from the punch (before keeling over again). Marciano Walcott I was an amazing punch, but again Walcott did not have a great chin, what would have happened if it was Ali or Holmes or Tyson on the receiving end?
Gene Fullmer was a really good fighter. And he had not just a good, but a *great* chin. One of the best chins at middleweight, no question. Just look at his record. SRR, at age 37, fighting one division higher than his prime, knocked granite-chinned Gene Fullmer the f*ck out with one punch. Fullmer was not just knocked out, but was rocked backwards and collapsed half way across the ring from the force of the blow. When he got up (which was very impressive btw, most fighters would have been lights out for a while), he didn't even realise he had been knocked out. Also if you look at the punch itself, the speed and timing was amazing. It was great tactically too - Robinson & his camp had seen from the first fight that Fullmer dropped his right hand a bit when going to throw a punch. Robinson saw that slight opening, and pounced on it with incredible speed, timing, precision, and power.
So, I don't know if this was the best KO ever, but if not then it was pretty damn close. Oh yeah, that youtube clip doesn't actually show the punch very well - there's some black & white footage showing it from a different angle, that makes you appreciate it even more.