Originally Posted by fleaman
Even taking into account the weights he covered, Fitz over Ali? I can't understand, though as you're not the kinda' guy to say something without extensively researching it, please xplain
Some people even rate him #1.
Can't knock the first man to win three titles - he'd be higher if I thought his average level of opposition was higher, although as it turns out, for his time, Fitzsimmons was fighting some very good boxers. And as nothing more than a small light heavyweight (champion at forty), he was faring very well as a heavyweight. In his prime it was only really Jim Jeffries who beat him.
If you speak to the right people, they'll tell you Fitzsimmons was a top twenty heavyweight, a top five light heavyweight and a top ten middleweight.
Ali was great - he beat four top twenty heavyweights, and that's why he's rated as high as he is. But I think certain opponents such as Ken Norton get highly overrated. Freddie Dawson, an opponent of Ike Williams, was relatively as good or better than Norton and Williams went 3-0-1 against him. But of course, Norton is more noteworthy for whatever reason.
But this about being as objective as you can within a highly subjective area. I know, it's hard to rate Ali outside of the top ten - but certain fighters, less famous fighters, accomplished more.