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Old 10-02-2012, 04:36 PM   #1
babaluma
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Default If Alan Rudkin had beaten Fighting Harada...

...in his first title challenge how would his reign have turned out? Would he have won or lost a rematch with Harada or would Harada have gone up to Featherweight? Would he have fought Walter McGowan for the title? Would he have kept the title against tough challengers like Caraballo or Medel? Would he have defeated Rose as champion with home advantage?

And where would his place in UK boxing history be if he had won and held the title for a few defences against this level of opposition?

I always felt Rudkin is a perfect example of a fighter who these days would be a champion but due to the strength of the era in which he fought with only one world title (as it should be!) was unfortunately relegated to just being a very very good contender.
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Old 10-02-2012, 04:42 PM   #2
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Default Re: If Alan Rudkin had beaten Fighting Harada...

Well he's underrated I find, so if he had the title he'd be more well known I imagine.

If the Rose fight had been anywhere other than Melbourne he might well have won. I have it 8-7 either way whenever I've scored it.

That was a shark tank of a bantamweight division. If Harada and Rose couldn't hold the title for long, Rudkin might well not have either.

He'd have been too strong down the stretch for Caraballo, no doubt. Medel was so sneaky but Rudkin a more consistent worker, so if his (usually very reliable) chin held up I'd take Rudkin via decision there.

But then Olivares would come along anyway....
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Old 10-02-2012, 06:02 PM   #3
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Default Re: If Alan Rudkin had beaten Fighting Harada...

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Well he's underrated I find, so if he had the title he'd be more well known I imagine.

If the Rose fight had been anywhere other than Melbourne he might well have won. I have it 8-7 either way whenever I've scored it.

That was a shark tank of a bantamweight division. If Harada and Rose couldn't hold the title for long, Rudkin might well not have either.

He'd have been too strong down the stretch for Caraballo, no doubt. Medel was so sneaky but Rudkin a more consistent worker, so if his (usually very reliable) chin held up I'd take Rudkin via decision there.

But then Olivares would come along anyway....
I think what makes boxing so fascinating is how so much history hangs on a little bit of luck. With that bit of luck Rudkin could be in the top 4 or 5 UK fighters like Ken Buchanan rather than a forgotten contender known only by the hardcore fan. I agree he could have held the title until Olivares after 3 or 4 defences, he may have even done better against Ruben with the confidence of being champion, although I doubt he could ever have beaten him.

Boxing is also an unusual sport in that losing to a great fighter can do more for your reputation than winning against mediocre contenders. I think Rudkin is on a par with champs like Hope and Hamed despite never having the title.
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Old 10-02-2012, 06:24 PM   #4
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Default Re: If Alan Rudkin had beaten Fighting Harada...

As much as Im a fan of Rudkin, I dont think he could have beaten Mashahiko.
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Old 10-02-2012, 07:11 PM   #5
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Default Re: If Alan Rudkin had beaten Fighting Harada...

Lots of things could've happened as has already been mentioned. A rematch would probably have taken place, and much as I admire Rudkin, it might've been a lot to expect him to repel Harada - yet to eat his way up to featherweight - a second time, though far from impossible, especially in the UK. The fight was sandwiched between both Harada-Jofre fights too, so that's another potential can of worms right there. I hope Al Jr weighs in on this, 'cos I think a fight with Jofre was in the works until Rudkin got slightly scabbed against McGowan first time around, which led in turn to him being frozen out of the world scene and having to go out to Barcelona in '67 only to get cheated against Ben Ali. Incidentally, Ben Ali himself was high up in the rankings himself in '66, as was Pimentel, so if we imagine a scenario whereby Alan somehow either beats or bypasses Harada and Jofre, we might've seen those two jostling with Medel, Caraballo and McGowan for a crack (with Medel probably at the front of the queue having sunk Pimentel, Corona, Wee Walter and Saito).

Rudkin vs Medel is an interesting one and I have a slight suspicion that Flea might not be too far from the truth with his summary, although Alan's classical stand-up, centre of the ring style would make for a testing clash with Medel's two-fisted power, slickness and trickery. I'd be more confident if I knew for certain that he (Rudkin) would keep the exchanges at ring-centre, where he was at his best, rather than being drawn to the ropes. Big no-no against Medel. Great fight though, hopefully with Rudkin's jaw, work rate, discipline and range control being enough to see him through. Wouldn't put money on it though.

I'd back Rudkin to circumnavigate Caraballo and Pimentel, though not without some difficulty. Pinto, Saito etc he should also turn over and if we're honest, he really beat Ben Ali despite not getting the decision.

Rose was ranked in '66 too iirc, though if any fictional timeline played out like the actual one, it would be a couple of years circa '68 before he, Sakurai and Castillo entered the mix soon to be followed by Olivares. How's that for fairness?

As mentioned earlier, Rudkin suffered a bit from not getting the fights between '66 and '68, though I suppose it's possible that tackling Harada (again), Jofre, Medel, Pimentel, McGowan and Caraballo in such a short space of time might have burnt him out a bit quicker before Rose and whatnot came along, with his overall legacy potentially very different, for better or for worse.
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Old 10-03-2012, 12:13 AM   #6
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Default Re: If Alan Rudkin had beaten Fighting Harada...

Very nice post Ribs.

What Alan had going for him was his ability to make weight with little hassle. Harada and Rose were completely the opposite.

Shameless plug here but if anyone has an iPad/android check out BritBox on the app store, there's a pretty well written piece about Alan Rudkin in there
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Old 10-03-2012, 09:13 AM   #7
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Default Re: If Alan Rudkin had beaten Fighting Harada...

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Originally Posted by Tin_Ribs View Post
Lots of things could've happened as has already been mentioned. A rematch would probably have taken place, and much as I admire Rudkin, it might've been a lot to expect him to repel Harada - yet to eat his way up to featherweight - a second time, though far from impossible, especially in the UK. The fight was sandwiched between both Harada-Jofre fights too, so that's another potential can of worms right there. I hope Al Jr weighs in on this, 'cos I think a fight with Jofre was in the works until Rudkin got slightly scabbed against McGowan first time around, which led in turn to him being frozen out of the world scene and having to go out to Barcelona in '67 only to get cheated against Ben Ali. Incidentally, Ben Ali himself was high up in the rankings himself in '66, as was Pimentel, so if we imagine a scenario whereby Alan somehow either beats or bypasses Harada and Jofre, we might've seen those two jostling with Medel, Caraballo and McGowan for a crack (with Medel probably at the front of the queue having sunk Pimentel, Corona, Wee Walter and Saito).

Rudkin vs Medel is an interesting one and I have a slight suspicion that Flea might not be too far from the truth with his summary, although Alan's classical stand-up, centre of the ring style would make for a testing clash with Medel's two-fisted power, slickness and trickery. I'd be more confident if I knew for certain that he (Rudkin) would keep the exchanges at ring-centre, where he was at his best, rather than being drawn to the ropes. Big no-no against Medel. Great fight though, hopefully with Rudkin's jaw, work rate, discipline and range control being enough to see him through. Wouldn't put money on it though.

I'd back Rudkin to circumnavigate Caraballo and Pimentel, though not without some difficulty. Pinto, Saito etc he should also turn over and if we're honest, he really beat Ben Ali despite not getting the decision.

Rose was ranked in '66 too iirc, though if any fictional timeline played out like the actual one, it would be a couple of years circa '68 before he, Sakurai and Castillo entered the mix soon to be followed by Olivares. How's that for fairness?

As mentioned earlier, Rudkin suffered a bit from not getting the fights between '66 and '68, though I suppose it's possible that tackling Harada (again), Jofre, Medel, Pimentel, McGowan and Caraballo in such a short space of time might have burnt him out a bit quicker before Rose and whatnot came along, with his overall legacy potentially very different, for better or for worse.
Nice post, well thought out. Where do you think Rudkin measures up against someone like Herol Graham, another very good perennial contender who seemed to just come up short? Very different styles of course but similar careers and potential.
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Old 10-03-2012, 09:22 AM   #8
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Default Re: If Alan Rudkin had beaten Fighting Harada...

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Originally Posted by Tin_Ribs View Post
Lots of things could've happened as has already been mentioned. A rematch would probably have taken place, and much as I admire Rudkin, it might've been a lot to expect him to repel Harada - yet to eat his way up to featherweight - a second time, though far from impossible, especially in the UK. The fight was sandwiched between both Harada-Jofre fights too, so that's another potential can of worms right there. I hope Al Jr weighs in on this, 'cos I think a fight with Jofre was in the works until Rudkin got slightly scabbed against McGowan first time around, which led in turn to him being frozen out of the world scene and having to go out to Barcelona in '67 only to get cheated against Ben Ali. Incidentally, Ben Ali himself was high up in the rankings himself in '66, as was Pimentel, so if we imagine a scenario whereby Alan somehow either beats or bypasses Harada and Jofre, we might've seen those two jostling with Medel, Caraballo and McGowan for a crack (with Medel probably at the front of the queue having sunk Pimentel, Corona, Wee Walter and Saito).

Rudkin vs Medel is an interesting one and I have a slight suspicion that Flea might not be too far from the truth with his summary, although Alan's classical stand-up, centre of the ring style would make for a testing clash with Medel's two-fisted power, slickness and trickery. I'd be more confident if I knew for certain that he (Rudkin) would keep the exchanges at ring-centre, where he was at his best, rather than being drawn to the ropes. Big no-no against Medel. Great fight though, hopefully with Rudkin's jaw, work rate, discipline and range control being enough to see him through. Wouldn't put money on it though.

I'd back Rudkin to circumnavigate Caraballo and Pimentel, though not without some difficulty. Pinto, Saito etc he should also turn over and if we're honest, he really beat Ben Ali despite not getting the decision.

Rose was ranked in '66 too iirc, though if any fictional timeline played out like the actual one, it would be a couple of years circa '68 before he, Sakurai and Castillo entered the mix soon to be followed by Olivares. How's that for fairness?

As mentioned earlier, Rudkin suffered a bit from not getting the fights between '66 and '68, though I suppose it's possible that tackling Harada (again), Jofre, Medel, Pimentel, McGowan and Caraballo in such a short space of time might have burnt him out a bit quicker before Rose and whatnot came along, with his overall legacy potentially very different, for better or for worse.
You forgot two things, TR. He would also be Alan Twitty, and your uncle.
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Old 10-03-2012, 09:24 AM   #9
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Default Re: If Alan Rudkin had beaten Fighting Harada...

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Nice post, well thought out. Where do you think Rudkin measures up against someone like Herol Graham, another very good perennial contender who seemed to just come up short? Very different styles of course but similar careers and potential.
Graham is a step behind Rudkin IMO. Rudkin has better wins. He was robbed against a prime Rose. Graham was robbed against a past peak Kalambay.

How do people think the respective performances against Harada and McCallum match up?

Ribs; I'd fancy Rose to track Sakurai down better than Rose did. Lovely nimble bout though I'd imagine.
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Old 10-03-2012, 09:47 AM   #10
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Default Re: If Alan Rudkin had beaten Fighting Harada...

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I'd fancy Rose to track Sakurai down better than Rose did.
Rose >>> Rose.
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Old 10-03-2012, 09:52 AM   #11
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Default Re: If Alan Rudkin had beaten Fighting Harada...

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Originally Posted by Flea Man View Post
Graham is a step behind Rudkin IMO. Rudkin has better wins. He was robbed against a prime Rose. Graham was robbed against a past peak Kalambay.

How do people think the respective performances against Harada and McCallum match up?

Ribs; I'd fancy Rose to track Sakurai down better than Rose did. Lovely nimble bout though I'd imagine.
although i agree rudkin did beat rose it was a close fight and not really a robbery more of a polite pick pocket. graham vs mccallum was bloody close too and could of been a graham win without to much sreaming robbery either
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Old 10-03-2012, 09:32 PM   #12
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Default Re: If Alan Rudkin had beaten Fighting Harada...

Flea, I'll nick our kid's i-phone next I see him and have a butchers at that article. Look forward to it actually.

Agree that Rudkin would probably be a bit better suited to pinning Sakurai down going on his style and the success he had with types like Rose, McGowan, Caldwell etc. Good fight, that one - Sakurai was neat and really well honed. Rudkin had a couple of slips post-Olivares against Revie and Senin too, who were both lefties. He was pretty worn though by that time, and Senin in particular was meant to be a really good fighter. Remember Al saying that the old fella spoke quite highly of Senin, who I think retired to enter a monastery or something.

@ babaluma , I agree (again) with Flea that Rudkin was a notch above Graham, though I like Herol (who's a nice bloke). The wins over Caldwell, Ben Ali, McGowan (twice really), Esparza and the Rose fight nail it for me just about. I think I like Rudkin's effort vs Harada over Graham's McCallum effort too. Harada was greater than McCallum imo and at his peak, plus Rudkin was at a slight stylistic disadvantage and had to go to Tokyo to boot. Herol was cool though, best bodyslammer I've ever seen.

Flea, could you see Rose doing better against Olivares if he hadn't been a weight drained husk, even if he wasn't able to actually turn Olivares over? Massive, massive bantam, which like you said was never a problem for Rudkin.
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Old 10-03-2012, 09:44 PM   #13
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Default Re: If Alan Rudkin had beaten Fighting Harada...

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You forgot two things, TR. He would also be Alan Twitty, and your uncle.
Never mind. I must have misread the thread title. Sorry about that.
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Old 10-03-2012, 09:46 PM   #14
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Default Re: If Alan Rudkin had beaten Fighting Harada...

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Never mind. I must have misread the thread title. Sorry about that.
I still laughed, if it's any consolation. Randomness keeps me going....
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Old 10-04-2012, 01:17 AM   #15
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Default Re: If Alan Rudkin had beaten Fighting Harada...

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Flea, I'll nick our kid's i-phone next I see him and have a butchers at that article. Look forward to it actually.

Agree that Rudkin would probably be a bit better suited to pinning Sakurai down going on his style and the success he had with types like Rose, McGowan, Caldwell etc. Good fight, that one - Sakurai was neat and really well honed. Rudkin had a couple of slips post-Olivares against Revie and Senin too, who were both lefties. He was pretty worn though by that time, and Senin in particular was meant to be a really good fighter. Remember Al saying that the old fella spoke quite highly of Senin, who I think retired to enter a monastery or something.

@ babaluma , I agree (again) with Flea that Rudkin was a notch above Graham, though I like Herol (who's a nice bloke). The wins over Caldwell, Ben Ali, McGowan (twice really), Esparza and the Rose fight nail it for me just about. I think I like Rudkin's effort vs Harada over Graham's McCallum effort too. Harada was greater than McCallum imo and at his peak, plus Rudkin was at a slight stylistic disadvantage and had to go to Tokyo to boot. Herol was cool though, best bodyslammer I've ever seen.

Flea, could you see Rose doing better against Olivares if he hadn't been a weight drained husk, even if he wasn't able to actually turn Olivares over? Massive, massive bantam, which like you said was never a problem for Rudkin.
I guess so. But kinda' like Larry Holmes being stopped by Tyson, it's like Rose was waiting for a guy with Olivares' properties to turn up and do a proper job on him where Chucho and Sakurai could only manage knockdowns (didn't Medel drop him as well pre-Rudkin in a non-title fight?)
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