Originally Posted by Unforgiven
I dont deny that he is a world-class trainer with a great record, but he's one of many IMO. He's one of the best-known probably because he's ambitiuous and likes the limelight and is willing to spread himself thin and work with top fighters all over the place. I know there are some great trainers who dont really stray beyond their own backyards and have no interest in seeking out top fighters.
The point I'm making is that Steward should get credit for the fighters he developed from scratch, but that the credit his gets for Lewis is way overblown considering what Lewis had already proven long before he worked with Steward.
I'd extend that to the Holyfield-Bowe fight too. Holyfield simply boxed more in the rematch, something that was obvious he should have done in the first fight. I think we all wrote that game plan for him before the first fight had even ended.
I dont think Steward's a better trainer than Benton, it's just that Holyfield (and the rest of us) underestimated Bowe's toughness first off.
Steward should get credit for taking a fighter like Holyfield and tweaking his style to get a win. Same with Oliver Mcall. It was Steward who worked with Mcall in the gym to time Lewis telegraphed righthand. Thats why Mcall landed it with his eyes close, because Steward practiced it so much with Mcall it became second nature. Where a trainer like Steward stands out from the rest, is that he is not only a fundementally sound teacher, like Benton you mentioned, but he is a great strategist. He can look at an opponent and set a specific gameplan that works. He can take a fighter with a lot of flaws and teach them the one thing that may exploit their oppponents one weakness because every fighter has a weakness. Its something special and different from a guy like George Benton. Eddie Futch was always great at it, so is Tommy Brooks and Freddie Roach. Your right Steward is in the limelight because hes on HBO but also because of the success hes had with other fighters.