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View Poll Results: The originator or the imitator?
Ali KO 3 4.23%
Ali PTS 51 71.83%
Holmes KO 1 1.41%
Holmes PTS 16 22.54%
Voters: 71. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 07-29-2009, 05:23 PM   #1
IntentionalButt
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Default Holmes (early 80s) vs. Ali (late 60s)

The Larry that beat up Muhammad in defense of the WBC title vs. the Muhammad that beat up the whole world (before slowing down a step post-exile and still beating up Larry in sparring in the early 70s).

This was inspired by both the recent Holmes interview that Rumsfeld and Boxing Girl did on the OTR show, as well as the Classic Forum all-time heavyweights ranking (in which Holmes netted about 1/3 the points as Ali).

Now, I'm not going to try and fight the uphill battle that Holmes rightfully deserved to be #1 (although #3 may be a bit too far a swing in the other direction) - a case can be made, but a case under duress and fought uphill. Ali at his best is hard to deny. But stylistically, if you could put a wrinkle in time and take the closest to prime Ali available (edit: the vintage just preceding the exile) and pit him head-to-head against Larry at his peak in terms of ability (except in this fight, not playing nice and pulling punches as he did in October 1980) - how would the fight play out?

Last edited by IntentionalButt; 07-29-2009 at 06:49 PM.
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Old 07-29-2009, 05:30 PM   #2
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Default Re: Holmes (early 80s) vs. Ali (early 70s)

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Originally Posted by IntentionalButt View Post
The Larry that beat up Muhammad in defense of the WBC title vs. the Muhammad that beat up Larry in sparring years earlier.

This was inspired by both the recent Holmes interview that Rumsfeld and Boxing Girl did on the OTR show, as well as the Classic Forum all-time heavyweights ranking (in which Holmes netted about 1/3 the points as Ali).

Now, I'm not going to try and fight the uphill battle that Holmes rightfully deserved to be #1 (although #3 may be a bit too far a swing in the other direction) - a case can be made, but a case under duress and fought uphill. Ali at his best is hard to deny. But stylistically, if you could put a wrinkle in time and take the closest to prime Ali available (we'll go with immediately post-"hiatus" given that the what-if period is an unknown quantity) and pit him head-to-head against Larry at his peak in terms of ability (except in this fight, not playing nice and pulling punches as he did in October 1980) - how would the fight play out?
Someone needs to explain to me why it's never Holmes (prime) vs Ali (prime)?
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Old 07-29-2009, 05:33 PM   #3
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Default Re: Holmes (early 80s) vs. Ali (early 70s)

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Originally Posted by Addie View Post
Someone needs to explain to me why it's never Holmes (prime) vs Ali (prime)?
Is that not more or less what I'm doing right here and now?

What would you offer as their respective primes? By early 80s for Larry I mean real early...literally 1980 - when they actually did fight. Do you feel he was past his best by then?
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Old 07-29-2009, 05:35 PM   #4
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Default Re: Holmes (early 80s) vs. Ali (early 70s)

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Is that not more or less what I'm doing right here and now?

What would you offer as their respective primes? By early 80s for Larry I mean real early...literally 1980 - when they actually did fight. Do you feel he was past his best by then?
I thought it was common knowledge that the prime Muhammad Ali was the one taking contenders and champions apart in shockingly easy fashion? Liston 1, Folley, Williams, etc. The pre-exile version, of course.
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Old 07-29-2009, 05:59 PM   #5
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Default Re: Holmes (early 80s) vs. Ali (late 60s)

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Originally Posted by Addie View Post
I thought it was common knowledge that the prime Muhammad Ali was the one taking contenders and champions apart in shockingly easy fashion? Liston 1, Folley, Williams, etc. The pre-exile version, of course.
I've seen/heard conflicting opinions. We can err on the side of early rather than late (in relation to the dark years many claim "would have been Ali's prime") if you think it will give a provide a more accurate matchup of both fighters at their best. Liston-Folley Ali was nasty.

Changed. Vote accordingly. Apologies to the few who already cast theirs (unless it doesn't impact your choice).
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Old 07-29-2009, 06:02 PM   #6
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Default Re: Holmes (early 80s) vs. Ali (late 60s)

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Originally Posted by IntentionalButt View Post
I've seen/heard conflicting opinions. We can err on the side of early rather than late (in relation to the dark years many claim "would have been Ali's prime") if you think it will give a provide a more accurate matchup of both fighters at their best. Liston-Folley Ali was nasty.

Changed. Vote accordingly. Apologies to the few who already cast theirs (unless it doesn't impact your choice).
I think Holmes is more successful against a more stationary Ali, which is what we had after his exile. I think the fleet footed Ali of the 60s, is effective at creating angles on Holmes, who was all a bit one dimensional with the way he came on the offensive. Both had great jabs, Ali having the slight edge in handspeed, but it's the intangibles that make him the winner in my book. Ali just seemed to be on a higher plane to everyone else when it came to will, heart, and determination. He always went the extra inch, which is why I think he gets out a closely fought decision.
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Old 07-29-2009, 06:30 PM   #7
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Default Re: Holmes (early 80s) vs. Ali (late 60s)

I'm confused. Is it prime Ali vs prime Holmes? Personally an early 70's Ali is much more foregone than an early 80's Holmes. Thought this was common knowledge...
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Old 07-29-2009, 06:48 PM   #8
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Default Re: Holmes (early 80s) vs. Ali (late 60s)

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I'm confused. Is it prime Ali vs prime Holmes? Personally an early 70's Ali is much more foregone than an early 80's Holmes. Thought this was common knowledge...
Late 60's (see thread title...changed about half an hour before your post...). I had originally been thinking FOTC Ali vs. the Holmes that beat him (as the signature versions of each). On second thought, the younger Ali was faster, hungrier, and probably all-around better. Thread has been changed accordingly.
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Old 07-29-2009, 07:05 PM   #9
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Default Re: Holmes (early 80s) vs. Ali (late 60s)

64-67 Ali beats 79-82 Holmes in a close but clear decision, it would be a classic technical boxing match with Ali beating him to the punch the majority of the time, speed kills in this one.

Ps. Anyone that votes anyone by KO is living in dreamland.
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Old 07-29-2009, 07:11 PM   #10
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Default Re: Holmes (early 80s) vs. Ali (late 60s)

Ali v Holmes in their primes is one of my fav dream matches.
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Old 07-29-2009, 07:13 PM   #11
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Default Re: Holmes (early 80s) vs. Ali (late 60s)

Holmes would have decisioned Ali IMO in what may have been an absolute tactical masterpiece between possibly two of the greatest heavyweight masterboxers ever.
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Old 07-29-2009, 07:22 PM   #12
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Default Re: Holmes (early 80s) vs. Ali (late 60s)

Ali has just proved so much. His superior mobility and speed let me think he outpoints Holmes in a prime vs prime matchup. Both have terrific recuperative power, but Ali has an edge in strategy and on a mental & thinkers aspect too. Ali has has the slightly better chin to combat Holmes' superior power.

I also think a prime Ali from 66-67 threw more punches and had better stamina. Ali's stamina and punch output in his prime are quite underrated. Anther reason why I see a prime Ali beating a FOTC Frazier (I know that's not related, just a side point).
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Old 07-29-2009, 07:45 PM   #13
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Default Re: Holmes (early 80s) vs. Ali (late 60s)

Ali mostly based on the speed factor. Would be interesting to see who would establish the jab first.
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Old 07-29-2009, 11:45 PM   #14
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Default Re: Holmes (early 80s) vs. Ali (late 60s)

Put Futch instead of Giachetti in Larry's corner, and the Holmes of Cooney and Cobb might be able to pull off a decision win over the mythical Ali of 1968 and 1969, if anybody could. (I wouldn't place any money on that outcome.)

For his style of boxing, the youthful Muhammad was a fast starter, but Folley did have some success in the opening three rounds. Larry was bigger and stronger, with a longer reach and greater durability than Zora. Ali didn't mind giving away bodyshots, and Futch would have had Holmes exploiting that to score points.
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Old 07-30-2009, 12:06 AM   #15
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Default Re: Holmes (early 80s) vs. Ali (late 60s)

prime Ali take this one. heīs much faster in his hands, very hard to hit and moves way better than Holmes. It wouldnīt be any KO but Holmes would have a hard night, thatīs for sure. Holmes was a little of a copy of Ali, only not as fast and definetly not as sharp as prime Ali.
Might sound that I donīt give much for Holmes? Wrong, on my list heīs nr 2 or 3 all time.
Itīs just that there has never been a faster HW than a prime Ali and Iīm not just talking handspeed.
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