Re: A couple questions about Duran
Like Frazier with Ali, Duran won the initial meeting, the one which counted most of the three. While I don't think Duran's reputation ever completely recovered from Montreal, his P4P status was enhanced by his performance against Hagler, and his longevity in defeating Barkely set him apart from many of his ATG opponents.
Duran's number two on my all-time P4P list. To have a chance at displacing SRR on top, he would have needed to win in New Orleans, decision Hagler (as he would have done had it been a 12 rounder), and kayo Hearns (as I expected he would do with his body attack).
If SRL had forced a stoppage in New Orleans, Duran may have slid in my view. Losing a decision wouldn't have affected my opinion about him, as he'd already beaten Ray, and was older and smaller.
He'll always be tainted with quitting after a guaranteed eight million dollar payoff, especially since so many boxers and fans of the sport are impoverished. It's sort of like Baer clowning away the title during the depths of the Great Depression.