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Old 10-11-2007, 11:59 AM   #31
ChrisPontius
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Default Re: tyson v foreman

Okay.

How much of an underdog would you make the Tyson that destroyed Spinks against the Foreman that destroyed Frazier?
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Old 10-11-2007, 12:15 PM   #32
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Default Re: tyson v foreman

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Okay.

How much of an underdog would you make the Tyson that destroyed Spinks against the Foreman that destroyed Frazier?
I would never make either of these fighters tremendous underdogs against each other, no matter what phase of their careers they were in. To answer your question, however I would likely favour Foreman by a narrow margin, due to the fact that he took the title from an all time great heavyweight champion who was in fact, trying to retain his belt. Although, Tyson's win over Spinks was impressive, I can't help but think that Spinks was not as interested in regaining the title, as Frazier was in keeping it. In fact, for years I felt that he went into that fight with the mentality that he was a mere lamb for the slaughter, and performed accordingly. Frazier did not step in the ring with Foreman thinking that he was going to leave a former champion.

You already mentioned that Frazier and Tyson had noticeable differences, and frankly I agree with you. The fact remains however, that both of those men were at least similar in size, stature and fighting style. Not to mention, I don't know how much heart or guts Tyson would show if he were to get floored multiple times in a single round. Would he get up? Would he be able to compose himself? Would he continue to fight clean or resort to dirty tactics? These are all questions that I can't answer, and nor could anyone else for that matter.

One thing is for certain, Foreman is not a man to be taken lightely. For decades, people have torn his fighting style to shreads, saying that he was clumbsy, slow, and had poor endurance. He also has been criticised for his opposition. throughout these crticisms however he continued to rack up KO's, and became a two time world champion despite being an underdog in both instances. George is a fighter who I would take very seriously no matter who his opponent was, and more particulary against a man who at one point, was knocked out by Buster Douglas.
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Old 10-12-2007, 12:42 AM   #33
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Default Re: tyson v foreman

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Foreman didn't breach the top 10 ratings until around February of 1990, following his knockout of Cooney. After that, he rose very quickley through the top ten, probably by means of both public interest as well as elimination of other fighters beating each other. The Rodriguez win boosted him from the lower parts of the top 10 to the top 5. I probably still have a stack of 1990 issues of ring magazines somewhere in the basement back at mom and dad's house.
It was unbelievable the way Foreman first breached and then ascended the heavyweight rankings. He was unrated prior to beating Gerry Cooney. He starches Cooney, an inactive, unranked, and fragile fighter, in two rounds, and then all of a sudden Big George is in the top ten. Prior to him fighting Holyfield, he was ranked somewhere between number five and number eight if I recall correctly. Then, when the fight with Holyfield was signed, and after George knocked out one final creampuff, Foreman was mysteriously ranked as high as number two by one of the major sanctioning bodies. The top three spots alternated between Mike Tyson, Razor Ruddock, and George Foreman. But how did Foreman get rated so highly? And how do you explain his being elevated as high as number two only after the Holyfield fight was signed for? Also, prior to Foreman's fight with Alex Stewart, he was ranked number one by the IBF.....Maybe a little "donation" was made to IBF President Bob Lee.
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Old 10-12-2007, 12:53 AM   #34
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I will add that i have also read the stories about Tyson not wanting to face Foreman. It could be true, who knows. Maybe d'Amato's words kept resounding in Tyson's head. But based on film and performances around that period, i don't think Mike had much to fear.

He didn't have much to gain from it either, by the way. Up to that point, Foreman had only beaten washed up ex-contenders and journeymen and it would take untill 1995 for him to have a win of big significance. Many people sympathised with Foreman but after losing rather one-sided fights to Holyfield and Morrison. When Stewart (who Tyson knocked out in 1 round) turned Foreman into a zombie with a hamburger face, they wanted him to retire.
Ruddock posed a much larger threat and reward, so he fought him. Tyson cannot be blamed for not fighting Foreman (although i'm not suggesting that you do).
I still don't get how Foreman was considered such a huge threat that so many top fighters didn't face. He talked and play-acted his way into the Holyfield fight. Guys like Mike Tyson and Razor Ruddock were busy fighting each other - a rarity to have two top heavyweights fight each other - and the following year Lennox Lewis willingly fought top-rated Razor Ruddock when no other heavyweight seemed to incline to do so. Remember how Riddick Bowe declined Razor Ruddock's challenge to a fight on more than one occasion? Bowe, by way of some rather warped logic, felt that Pierre Coetzer was a better fighter in which to earn his shot against Holyfield; I guess he felt Ruddock wasn't worthy enough.

The point being, George Foreman didn't fight anybody worthwhile back when there was a good crop of heavyweights on the scene. Even Larry Holmes, whom I have criticized a time or two, willingly fought a good fighter in Ray Mercer to legitimately earn his shot against Holyfield - something Foreman did not do. Foreman would talk tough but when it came right down to it, there was very little substance.
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Old 10-12-2007, 05:51 AM   #35
ChrisPontius
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Default Re: tyson v foreman

I agree. Probably it was similar to how he payed $250.000 to be allowed to fight Crimsley instead of a mandatory.
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Old 10-12-2007, 06:02 AM   #36
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Tyson would have done what he did to Holmes
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Old 10-12-2007, 08:16 AM   #37
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Default Re: tyson v foreman

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It was unbelievable the way Foreman first breached and then ascended the heavyweight rankings. He was unrated prior to beating Gerry Cooney. He starches Cooney, an inactive, unranked, and fragile fighter, in two rounds, and then all of a sudden Big George is in the top ten. Prior to him fighting Holyfield, he was ranked somewhere between number five and number eight if I recall correctly. Then, when the fight with Holyfield was signed, and after George knocked out one final creampuff, Foreman was mysteriously ranked as high as number two by one of the major sanctioning bodies. The top three spots alternated between Mike Tyson, Razor Ruddock, and George Foreman. But how did Foreman get rated so highly? And how do you explain his being elevated as high as number two only after the Holyfield fight was signed for? Also, prior to Foreman's fight with Alex Stewart, he was ranked number one by the IBF.....Maybe a little "donation" was made to IBF President Bob Lee.
There were a lot of heavyweights in the top 10 picture of 1989-1990 who probably shouldn't have been there. Carl Williams, who after he was starched in 1 round by Tyson ( the only fight he had between 1988-1990 ) was rated as high as number 3 for over a year after. Greg Page re-entered the top ten after losing to Orlin Norris, and was quickley knocked out by journeyman Mark Wills. Renaldo Snipes hadn't beaten a ranked contender in years, yet he was like #7 by the WBC at one point in 1990. Alex Stewart had never beaten anyone better than Dave Jaco, and he was #2 when he fought Evander Holyfield. Douglas got his title shot at Tyson by decisioning an aging Berbick. The list goes on and on. That being said, Foreman probably wasn't any less deserving of top ten berth, then most of the men who were in it. He at least stayed more active than any of the current crop at the time, and who's wins over Cooney, Martin, Cooper, and Rodriguez were likely as good or better than many of the journeyman and club fighters that Snipes, Ribalta, Norris, Page, Mason, and Witherspoon were figting to stay alive. Plus he was scoring back to back early round knockouts, whereas some of those other guys were barely winning decisions over bums.

It wasn't until between 1991 and 1992, when some of the 88' Olympic prospects like Mercer, Bowe, Lewis, plus Morrison and Seldon began working their way up, that the divsion began showing promise again, along with ratings that were more justified.
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