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Old 09-20-2009, 03:21 PM   #16
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Default Re: What did pre-Steward Lewis do better than post-Steward Lewis?

I personally think Lewis was much faster in his youth and I think that Stewards input is over rated. But what I think he did, as much as anything was to tech Lewis to use his size more effectively and to control range. Personally I think Lewis was more exciting to watch in his youth and he always had that explosive power. By and large, as he learned how to control range better, his wins became less appealing to the public.
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Old 09-20-2009, 09:35 PM   #17
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Default Re: What did pre-Steward Lewis do better than post-Steward Lewis?

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Originally Posted by lefthook31 View Post
Obviously Lewis had a championship heart, but not the knowledge or experience to apply it in a tough fight. Watch the Mercer fight and listen closely to Stewards comments between rounds. Lewis was a premadonna who kept telling Steward to tell the ref that Mercer was doing this or that. He was frustrated because he was confused. His jab wasnt working and Mercer wasnt falling down. It was then that Steward basically yelled at him and told him what he had to do to win. These are the type of fights that define great fighters. Their ability to dig down deep and grind out a win. With that in mind it takes a great cornerman to complete the fighter and push him through, and its not always a name or popular guy but one that clicks with his pupil, but still has a good background of the game. Correa didnt have that with Lewis, Steward did.
Are you saying Steward was better at motivating or pushing Lewis than Correa was? If so, I don't agree with that. Steward may have done a better job of improving Lewis' skills than Correa, but if anything, I think Correa was actually better at getting Lewis to be aggressive and let his hands go (albeit perhaps to a fault). For example, when Lewis fought Tucker, Correa got him to stay on the attack through most of the fight and not lose focus. When Lewis fought Mercer, Steward kept screaming at him round after round to step up the pace, but Lewis didn't listen and continued to allow Mercer to get off first and take the fight to him. You could see Manny was very uneasy at Lewis having let that fight be so close, and they were very lucky the decision didn't happen to go the other way, which it probably just as well could've. Steward may have done good work with Lewis in preparation for fights, but they did not have a good corner relationship. That was evident from the numerous fights where Steward would keep telling Lewis to do something in the corner, and Lewis would keep going on out and either ignoring him or doing something completely different.

I think Correa's work with Lewis is actually somewhat misunderstood. I agree that he didn't develop Lewis' skills as much as he should've, but out of any trainer Lewis worked with, he best understood the necessity of keeping him motivated and not letting him fall asleep in fights. I'd say he was as good as anyone at lighting a fire under his ass.
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Old 09-20-2009, 09:43 PM   #18
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Default Re: What did pre-Steward Lewis do better than post-Steward Lewis?

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Steward (and specifically his input into the fighting ability of Lewis) is laughably overrated.

Personally, I dont rate the guy as the trainer-God almost everyone thinks he is. He's obviously a good self-promoter and a loudmouth abrasive cheerleader type. Maybe he's a psychological asset.

Lennox Lewis was a brilliant fighter BEFORE he had Steward on his team. Firstly, he'd come from an extensive amateur boxing background and been to two Olympic games, losing in the QFs to the eventual winner in '84 and won a gold in '86. He'd powered his way up the pro ranks in 2-3 years. His win over Ruddock still stands as one of his finest, an earlier win over Gary Mason (in his 15th pro fight) was very impressive, he was rated in the top 2 from '92 - '94, had defeated several ranked contenders, had Riddick Bowe avoiding him. He'd shown immense power, skill, and a general superiority over almost everyone he fought. He was an accomplished seasoned pro, one of the two or three elite fighters active in the division.

People use the "pre-Steward"/"post-Steward" thing to ignore any of the negatives in performance and rough edges in any early Lewis fights, or alibi his loss to McCall. But it doesn't stand up to scrutiny, he had some scruffy, scrappy and so-so performances throughout the later part of his career too and Manny Steward was ABSOLUTELY COMPLICIT in Lewis losing to Rahman (a worst defeat than McCall), yet people ignore this !
Steward was going around saying Lewis didn't need to acclimatise to the altitude, that people who travel a lot (Lennox and himself!) dont need to worry about that ! Steward was messing around training new fighters (Naseem Hamed, who got pounded by MAB with Steward in his corner!) a fortnight before the Rahman fight, and he and Lewis were out in LA filming Ocean's Eleven !
Shit, if Pepe Corea pulled that stunt you'd all be calling him a clown and crucifyng him !
But everyone kisses Manny Steward's ass. It's sad.
I agree with pretty much everything you say here, particularly about Manny being overrated. For every fighter he's "transformed" like Lewis and Wlad, there's a fighter he ruined like Taylor and Hamed.

I'd also like to point out, Lewis had already showed much of the boxing technique that Steward gets credit for "teaching" him as an amateur and in his early pro career, but got away from them somewhat after winning the title. Even in his win over Phil Jackson, I felt he boxed about as well as he has in any fight. I don't believe Steward so much taught him new things as much as he simply helped him "regain" things that he had forsaken.
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Old 09-21-2009, 12:24 AM   #19
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Default Re: What did pre-Steward Lewis do better than post-Steward Lewis?

Stewart certainly influenced Lewis to protect that so so chin.................and when you think lightning only strkes once it did strike again against borderline journeyman. If Lewis would never had Stewart it stands to reason that he would have more KO losses on his record because in a real firefight it was was always his achilles heel.

Fantasy ? I think not, check out WK before and after Stewart, agressive and actively looking for the KO, now safety first and settle for a onesided decision instead of taking chances. Not a bad strategy, a win is a win no matter how you slice and dice it.

Both WK and Lewis have similar qualities, good jab, size , height, strengh, ok but not great stamina and are good in imposing their will on opponents........but then we also have the chin factor to consider, while not glass but certainly not on a Tyson, Holyfield, Ali Foreman and so on level
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Old 09-21-2009, 05:04 AM   #20
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Default Re: What did pre-Steward Lewis do better than post-Steward Lewis?

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Yeah well it works both ways. He developed Mike Moorer and Gerald Mclellan from amatuers, and they left him.
You cant win them all either and Hamed was always a technical mess. Steward also worked with Evander Holyfield and set the gameplan for his winning effort against Riddick Bowe.
Its not overated either what he does and part of the reason hes in demand so much. It also shows the importance of a great strategist teacher, regardless of the level of fighter.
I do agree at the time Lewis lost, Steward was working with too many fighters. That probably contributed to Lewis loss, but again more reason why he was so important to him.
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.
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Old 09-21-2009, 08:43 AM   #21
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Default Re: What did pre-Steward Lewis do better than post-Steward Lewis?

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Originally Posted by My2Sense View Post
Are you saying Steward was better at motivating or pushing Lewis than Correa was? If so, I don't agree with that. Steward may have done a better job of improving Lewis' skills than Correa, but if anything, I think Correa was actually better at getting Lewis to be aggressive and let his hands go (albeit perhaps to a fault). For example, when Lewis fought Tucker, Correa got him to stay on the attack through most of the fight and not lose focus. When Lewis fought Mercer, Steward kept screaming at him round after round to step up the pace, but Lewis didn't listen and continued to allow Mercer to get off first and take the fight to him. You could see Manny was very uneasy at Lewis having let that fight be so close, and they were very lucky the decision didn't happen to go the other way, which it probably just as well could've. Steward may have done good work with Lewis in preparation for fights, but they did not have a good corner relationship. That was evident from the numerous fights where Steward would keep telling Lewis to do something in the corner, and Lewis would keep going on out and either ignoring him or doing something completely different.

I think Correa's work with Lewis is actually somewhat misunderstood. I agree that he didn't develop Lewis' skills as much as he should've, but out of any trainer Lewis worked with, he best understood the necessity of keeping him motivated and not letting him fall asleep in fights. I'd say he was as good as anyone at lighting a fire under his ass.
Are you people f*cking kidding me?? Lewis didnt have a good corner relationship with him?? Lewis himself will tell you exactly what Im saying about the Mercer fight as being a big turning point in his career. Without Steward yelling at him he would have lost that fight. He will also tell you without Steward he wouldnt have gotten as far as he did.
Secondly, the proof is in the accomplishments. Im saying Steward made him into a complete fighter. With Correa in his corner Lewis was righthand happy off balance bomber. When he started fighting top ten fighters he was inconsistent, the reason he made the change. With Steward he was a calculated balanced fighter, and maybe thats why he was so much consistently better over the course of his career. With Correa in his corner, he looked horrible against Bruno and horrible against Mcall. He never had that kind of a performance again until late in his career after he accomplished so much.
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Old 09-21-2009, 08:46 AM   #22
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Default Re: What did pre-Steward Lewis do better than post-Steward Lewis?

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Originally Posted by sauhund II View Post
Stewart certainly influenced Lewis to protect that so so chin.................and when you think lightning only strkes once it did strike again against borderline journeyman. If Lewis would never had Stewart it stands to reason that he would have more KO losses on his record because in a real firefight it was was always his achilles heel.

Fantasy ? I think not, check out WK before and after Stewart, agressive and actively looking for the KO, now safety first and settle for a onesided decision instead of taking chances. Not a bad strategy, a win is a win no matter how you slice and dice it.

Both WK and Lewis have similar qualities, good jab, size , height, strengh, ok but not great stamina and are good in imposing their will on opponents........but then we also have the chin factor to consider, while not glass but certainly not on a Tyson, Holyfield, Ali Foreman and so on level
Hello!! Thats exactly right! Steward is very good at highlighting a fighters abilities and protecting their deficits. Deep down Lewis was a dog and liked to fight, but he just didnt have the chin for it and while Steward made him more of a safety first type fighter, it was the main reason he accomplished as much as he did.
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Old 09-21-2009, 08:49 AM   #23
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Default Re: What did pre-Steward Lewis do better than post-Steward Lewis?

Do you guys feel that the added weight helped or hindered Lewis in any way? I'm not sure what the particular motive was behind adding the weight - obviously as a fighter ages he tends to gain a few pounds - but Lewis definitely gained muscle with Steward.
He went from the high 220's to the low 240's...a fairly significant difference.

Can anyone tell me specifically what brought about the added weight, and how it may have infuenced Lewis' style in one way or another?
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Old 09-21-2009, 08:55 AM   #24
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Default Re: What did pre-Steward Lewis do better than post-Steward Lewis?

Don't forget that Steward in McCall's corner when McCall KO'd Lewis. He saw the weaknesses, exploited them and fixed them when he was with Lewis.

I do think that the Lennox Lewis who fought Ruddock may have been physically the best Lewis we ever saw but he would later improve on his skills, turning him into a better boxer.
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Old 09-21-2009, 08:58 AM   #25
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Default Re: What did pre-Steward Lewis do better than post-Steward Lewis?

Lewis looks like a lot more than just "a right hand happy bomber" in this fight (admittedly this is before he was with Corea, I think) :

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Old 09-21-2009, 08:58 AM   #26
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Default Re: What did pre-Steward Lewis do better than post-Steward Lewis?

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I agree with pretty much everything you say here, particularly about Manny being overrated. For every fighter he's "transformed" like Lewis and Wlad, there's a fighter he ruined like Taylor and Hamed.

I'd also like to point out, Lewis had already showed much of the boxing technique that Steward gets credit for "teaching" him as an amateur and in his early pro career, but got away from them somewhat after winning the title. Even in his win over Phil Jackson, I felt he boxed about as well as he has in any fight. I don't believe Steward so much taught him new things as much as he simply helped him "regain" things that he had forsaken.
He ruined Taylor and Hamed? Cmon man. He worked with Hamed for what one or two fights?? Oscar Suarez couldnt fix him either, because he was always a technical mess.
Taylor never had stamina, and hes proved that by going back to his original trainer and still losing in the later rounds.
Big difference between Phil Jackson and Ray Mercer or Frank Bruno. Thats the point, Lewis was having a tough time with the better fighters. Phil Jackson was a flash in the pan put into the rankings by Don King.
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Old 09-21-2009, 09:01 AM   #27
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Default Re: What did pre-Steward Lewis do better than post-Steward Lewis?

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Originally Posted by Unforgiven View Post
Lewis looks like a lot more than just "a right hand happy bomber" in this fight (admittedly this is before he was with Corea, I think) :

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Gary Mason another great fighter that went on to compete successfully in the top ten of the world? Cmon dude, Lewis wouldnt have made the change if he thought he had the skills to compete on the elite level.
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Old 09-21-2009, 09:03 AM   #28
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Default Re: What did pre-Steward Lewis do better than post-Steward Lewis?

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Do you guys feel that the added weight helped or hindered Lewis in any way? I'm not sure what the particular motive was behind adding the weight - obviously as a fighter ages he tends to gain a few pounds - but Lewis definitely gained muscle with Steward.
He went from the high 220's to the low 240's...a fairly significant difference.

Can anyone tell me specifically what brought about the added weight, and how it may have infuenced Lewis' style in one way or another?
I think it was just a matter of growing into his adult body. You look at both him and Riddick Bowe from the amatuers to the time they were in title contention and they looked like they doubled in size. Lewis was always in far better condition, and was a well disciplined athelete, something that cant be said for Riddick Bowe.
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Old 09-21-2009, 09:06 AM   #29
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Default Re: What did pre-Steward Lewis do better than post-Steward Lewis?

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Big difference between Phil Jackson and Ray Mercer or Frank Bruno. Thats the point, Lewis was having a tough time with the better fighters. Phil Jackson was a flash in the pan put into the rankings by Don King.
He didn't have a tough time with Razor Ruddock, nor with Tony Tucker.
With Steward, who did he fight who were actually better than - or even as good as - Ruddock, Tucker, Bruno ?

Bruno was really pumped up for the Lewis fight, and boxed a great fight, he put pressure on Lewis enough to make him look sloppy. A c. 1997-2000 Lewis would probably had similar trouble with that version of Bruno.
Let's be honest, Lewis could look scruffy at times, esp. when retreating under pressure. He had a great instinct for keeping it together though and pulling out the win, on most occasions anyway.
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Old 09-21-2009, 09:11 AM   #30
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Default Re: What did pre-Steward Lewis do better than post-Steward Lewis?

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Gary Mason another great fighter that went on to compete successfully in the top ten of the world? Cmon dude, Lewis wouldnt have made the change if he thought he had the skills to compete on the elite level.
What are you talking about ? - He was more than competing on the elite level without Steward ! He was easily defeating the likes of Ruddock and Tucker, and had Riddick Bowe binning the belt rather than fight him. He was ranked in the top 2 or 3, and in hindsight many of his fans will tell you, reasonably I suppose, point blank he was the number 1 guy over Bowe at that time.
And Gary Mason was as good as many of the contenders Lewis beat after he got with steward.
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