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Old 11-05-2009, 06:23 PM   #61
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Default Re: Benny Leonard was the greatest lightweight of all time - by a long way

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Ben Leonard was a slick boxer with good technique and skill, but he couldn't bust an egg over a kitchen counter........
What?? How the hell did he smash the shit out of HOFers Freddie Welsh (never stopped otherwise) and Willie Ritchie (only stopped in his 1st pro bout) along with a host of other top fighters like Richie Mitchell, Charley White, Rocky Kansas, Pinky Mitchell, Johnny Kilbane, etc., etc. Leonard was known in his own time as a feared puncher and his achievements bear that out.

If Leonard couldn't punch as a LW, what reason is there to think Duran could either then?
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Old 11-05-2009, 06:42 PM   #62
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Default Re: Benny Leonard was the greatest lightweight of all time - by a long way

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No.. No, it doesn't... Styles make fights, etc......... Ben Leonard was a slick boxer with good technique and skill, but he couldn't bust an egg over a kitchen counter........
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Old 11-05-2009, 07:15 PM   #63
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Default Re: Benny Leonard was the greatest lightweight of all time - by a long way

Look, all I'm saying is that for Leonard to have well over 200 pro fights, he only KO'd 70 guys................ That is NOT a high percentage at all....... Benny Leonard was not a serious puncher........ BUT! Having said that, even an average puncher fighter from any weight and any era can and sometimes shocks the public by scoring a vicious KO over a name opponent who was thought to have a solid beard....... Knockouts do happen in boxing......... But, most of the top challengers of the teens and 1920s were not in fear of Benny Leonard's power going into a fight with Benny....... Benny Leonard was mainly noted for his smooth skills and technique.... That's pretty much the bottom line on Benny Leonard......


As for Roberto Duran, well, he was often misjudged as being just a reckless brawler who had aggression and power as a lightweight of the 1970s........ Well, we all pretty much know now that was a lot of bollocks and that Duran in fact was a damn gifted boxer who provided angles, along with skilled maneuvers while attacking his victims.....

Now, Duran was indeed a gifted boxer, but not a runner type........ Duran normally stood his ground in ring center and merely took them stutter steps to the side when seeking another angle...... Duran was NOT the type of boxer like Ali or Ray Leonard who'd utilize the whole Goddamn ring by moving all over the place............ Duran's style and approach was different.... Yet he was a boxer, and a fine one at that.........

In my view, Duran is too strong and powerful for Benny Leonard in a time machine........ Benny would score points and fluster Duran early on, but eventually, Duran would get through to Leonard and begin breaking him down........ I see Duran scoring a late round TKO over Benny Leonard....


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Old 11-05-2009, 07:23 PM   #64
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Default Re: Benny Leonard was the greatest lightweight of all time - by a long way

Also, by 1980, Duran was just under "2" yrs ahead from fighting his last fight at 135 pounds against Esteban DeJesus on CBS TV............... Going into the fight in Montreal with SRL, Duran was 71-1-0 (55) Knockouts............. Duran weighed a solid 145 for Ray Leonard in Canada, but as stated before, I think Duran fought a warm-up fight prior to where he was 148 pounds.... To my knowledge, in 1980, 148 pounds was the most Duran ever brought into the ring for a fight......... And he didn't look like a slob, either.....

Duran never appeared slobbish to me at 148 and below........ I did, however, think Duran looked sloppy and sluggish in 1981 against Nino Gonzalez weighing a hefty 156 or 157 pounds........ That was the turning point in the career of Duran.... At age 30, Duran was no longer in his prime as a fighter, but he'd fight for another 20 yrs until 2001........

MR.BILL

Note:

The freaky thing in 1981 with Duran is, he fought Nino Gonzalez in early to mid August and he looked soft / bloated, but 4 or 5 weeks later in Sept., Duran fought Luigi Minchillo in Vegas and I thought Duran looked a lot better at a solid 154 pounds..... Duran won a 10 rounder, but Minchillo was tuff in 1981 at Jr. Middleweight........
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Old 11-05-2009, 07:42 PM   #65
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Default Re: Benny Leonard was the greatest lightweight of all time - by a long way

In the limited footage available, Leonard looks great in the ability to maintain his spacing during a fight. Very similar to Pep, in that way. Very hard to deal with stylistically. a fight with Duran would be fantastic. Who would have been able to impose their style? Tough call.
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Old 11-05-2009, 07:53 PM   #66
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Default Re: Benny Leonard was the greatest lightweight of all time - by a long way

You do realise Bill that Benny fought in many charity bouts judged by the local newspaper which were often short 4-6 rounds, fighters were encouraged to go the rounds to give the crowd a show (a lot of the write ups for Benny's fights talk of him boxing circles around his opponants and coasting, doing what he had to)..His knockout percentage in title fights is nothing to scoff at, in fact its something like 75% and considering the opposition he beat thats pretty good.
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Old 11-05-2009, 08:11 PM   #67
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Default Re: Benny Leonard was the greatest lightweight of all time - by a long way

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You do realise Bill that Benny fought in many charity bouts judged by the local newspaper which were often short 4-6 rounds, fighters were encouraged to go the rounds to give the crowd a show (a lot of the write ups for Benny's fights talk of him boxing circles around his opponants and coasting, doing what he had to)..His knockout percentage in title fights is nothing to scoff at, in fact its something like 75% and considering the opposition he beat thats pretty good.
Okay... Okay...... I'll retract the earlier statement that Leonard couldn't crack an egg........... But, I still contend that he was not known nor seldom ever credited during his day as a vicious puncher...... Benny Leonard was mainly known and credited as a sound boxer with skill and finess..........

Leonard ended up becoming a referee when he died in the ring after a bout in the late 1940s of a heart attack, all at the tender age of 51 or so....... Bizarre for a former world class athlete who was lean..... Though Leonard had plumped up pretty good after his career was over for good...... Yet, kinda' a befitting way to go........... Leonard was indeed a true ringer.........


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Old 11-05-2009, 09:44 PM   #68
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Default Re: Benny Leonard was the greatest lightweight of all time - by a long way

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BUT! Having said that, even an average puncher fighter from any weight and any era can and sometimes shocks the public by scoring a vicious KO over a name opponent who was thought to have a solid beard.......
But Leonard didn't "sometimes" shock the public with his KOs. He regularly shocked them.


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But, most of the top challengers of the teens and 1920s were not in fear of Benny Leonard's power going into a fight with Benny....... Benny Leonard was mainly noted for his smooth skills and technique.... That's pretty much the bottom line on Benny Leonard......
Here's from the NY Times' report on Leonard's upcoming challenge of Jack Britton, dated June 26, 1922.

"Because of his brilliant boxing ability and the terrific power of his punches, Leonard has been installed a favorite. Many are confident the lightweight champion will win with a knockout; a majority express the conviction that Leonard will win the decision."
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Old 11-05-2009, 09:55 PM   #69
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Default Re: Benny Leonard was the greatest lightweight of all time - by a long way

Look.. All in all, I do rate Benjamin Leonard rather highly at 135 on the ATG list of ex-champions...... Do I think he was # 1 of all-time? No..... But he is up there

Would Benny Leonard beat guys like "Duran & Whitaker" at 135 pounds?? I kinda' doubt it......... I'm not so sure Leonard would've beaten old dudes like "Armstrong or Ike Williams," either......

What about dudes like "Arguello or Chavez?" Hmmm.... I'm not sure about that, as well...

Benny Leonard would definately know he was in a fight with them cats......

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Old 11-06-2009, 12:40 AM   #70
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Default Re: Benny Leonard was the greatest lightweight of all time - by a long way

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No.. No, it doesn't... Styles make fights, etc......... Ben Leonard was a slick boxer with good technique and skill, but he couldn't bust an egg over a kitchen counter........ In my view, Benny Leonard's best chance of beating Roberto Duran in a time machine would be to fight the pre 1973 Duran at 135 pounds........... Duran was NOT in his true prime when he beat Ken Buchanan in New York in 1972.... At age 21, Duran was still shy of his real prime days / years..........


SO! Okay, perhaps the Benny Leonard of 1922 does indeed school the Duran of 1972 in a time machine, that I can believe is possible.... But the Leonard of 1922 / '23 fighting the Roberto Duran of 1974 / '75 at 135 pounds, no way would Benny Leonard beat that animal in the ring.......


MR.BILL
What makes you say Leonard couldn't break an egg? He had a lot more power than his record indacates. He fought a lot of no decision or newspaper decision fights in which there was no reason to take risks or do anything more than go the distance. At his best a prime Leonard would outbox and hurt Duran.
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Old 11-06-2009, 12:52 AM   #71
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Default Re: Benny Leonard was the greatest lightweight of all time - by a long way

"He whipped me, he whipped me, and oh, how can he hit!!"
--Kansas after Benny Leonard kayoed him in 8
Source: [Only registered and activated users can see links. ]
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Old 11-06-2009, 12:59 AM   #72
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Default Re: Benny Leonard was the greatest lightweight of all time - by a long way

I fell the best match up for Leonard and the best posible lightweight match up is Pernell Whitaker. Whitaker like Leonard is a master boxer with underrated power. Whitaker is a southpaw Leonard is orthodox (This refers to his boxing stance) Whitaker enjoys a one inch hight advantage they have the same reach. In other words they are miror images with each other. I go back and fourth non who I'd pick.
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Old 11-06-2009, 05:40 AM   #73
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Default Re: Benny Leonard was the greatest lightweight of all time - by a long way

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Of course you are correct, Leonard was crude and easy to hit,a myth.
Him, and all those other old guys were rubbish.
when did I say all the others old fighters are rubbish just because I don't believe Benny Leonard was a great fighter does'nt mean I don't rate the old fighters I rate Ray Robinson, Joe Louis, Archie Moore, Jack Johnson, Ike Williams and many more, Every point I made about why I don't believe Benny Leonard is great fighter Hd 2 Hd is a valid point,

you need calm and not get so offended just because I make a point.
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Old 11-06-2009, 10:07 AM   #74
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Default Re: Benny Leonard was the greatest lightweight of all time - by a long way

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Add Saoul Mamby, Ernesto Marcel, Hiroshi Kobayashi, and Guts Ishimatsu and Hector Thompson to the list of quality champions and challengers for Duran, and this becomes a lot closer in terms of comparing resume.
No, because I could add others from Benny Leonard's lot. Some would say I was being generous, holding up Lampkin in the same light as Rocky Kansas.

I only picked what I judged as their best few. Of course there are others.
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Old 11-06-2009, 10:10 AM   #75
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Default Re: Benny Leonard was the greatest lightweight of all time - by a long way

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Originally Posted by MRBILL View Post
Look, all I'm saying is that for Leonard to have well over 200 pro fights, he only KO'd 70 guys................ That is NOT a high percentage at all....... Benny Leonard was not a serious puncher........ BUT! Having said that, even an average puncher fighter from any weight and any era can and sometimes shocks the public by scoring a vicious KO over a name opponent who was thought to have a solid beard....... Knockouts do happen in boxing......... But, most of the top challengers of the teens and 1920s were not in fear of Benny Leonard's power going into a fight with Benny....... Benny Leonard was mainly noted for his smooth skills and technique.... That's pretty much the bottom line on Benny Leonard......


As for Roberto Duran, well, he was often misjudged as being just a reckless brawler who had aggression and power as a lightweight of the 1970s........ Well, we all pretty much know now that was a lot of bollocks and that Duran in fact was a damn gifted boxer who provided angles, along with skilled maneuvers while attacking his victims.....

Now, Duran was indeed a gifted boxer, but not a runner type........ Duran normally stood his ground in ring center and merely took them stutter steps to the side when seeking another angle...... Duran was NOT the type of boxer like Ali or Ray Leonard who'd utilize the whole Goddamn ring by moving all over the place............ Duran's style and approach was different.... Yet he was a boxer, and a fine one at that.........

In my view, Duran is too strong and powerful for Benny Leonard in a time machine........ Benny would score points and fluster Duran early on, but eventually, Duran would get through to Leonard and begin breaking him down........ I see Duran scoring a late round TKO over Benny Leonard....


MR.BILL
Put this on a Duran vs. Leonard thread. As it happens, I agree with you (but by decision), but we're talking about their accomplishments.

And to the poster who said 'head-to-head is a good criteria' - it is, depending on what you want. And I already said that. For me, accomplishments and how good a fighter was for his time is more important than a direct match up.
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