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Old 12-11-2009, 11:05 PM   #16
djanders
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Default Re: Dreamfight: Jack Johnson (1910) vs Sonny Liston (1962) - who would win?

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Originally Posted by Sardu View Post
This would be the prime Johnson who boxed James J Jeffries' ears off and rendered him unable to come out for round 15 vs the intimidator who sparked Patterson. Who do you guys like here. This is difficult but I pick Johnson by late round TKO if the fight is scheduled for 20 rounds like back in Johnson's day.

Johnson TKO 17 Liston
I'm also picking Johnson by a late stoppage, but there certainly could be a scare for Jack in there someplace.
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Old 12-12-2009, 07:55 AM   #17
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Default Re: Dreamfight: Jack Johnson (1910) vs Sonny Liston (1962) - who would win?

Other than Ali, Liston never fought anyone with the skills of a Jack Johnson. Liston was a powerhouse with a good left jab. Johnson was a defensive wizard who wasn't easy to hit and also a good banger himself. I would lean toward Jack Johnson in this matchup.
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Old 12-12-2009, 12:08 PM   #18
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Default Re: Dreamfight: Jack Johnson (1910) vs Sonny Liston (1962) - who would win?

It would definately be a dangerous match up for Jack early on but he had the style to give Sonny fits ..
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Old 12-12-2009, 01:20 PM   #19
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Default Re: Dreamfight: Jack Johnson (1910) vs Sonny Liston (1962) - who would win?

Good lord.

Johnson twirls his fists a la Popeye- what passes for defensive wizardry in these parts- and promptly eat a jab that makes Choynski's right hand seem like a spring breeze. Rights and lefts follow, confusing Johnson as he is used to middleweights, old men and former fatties on the comeback trail after years. His attempts to tie up and met with rib-bruising hooks.

A handle-bar mustachioed ref lets this go 4. A modern ref stops it in 2.
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Old 12-13-2009, 02:10 PM   #20
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Default Re: Dreamfight: Jack Johnson (1910) vs Sonny Liston (1962) - who would win?

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Originally Posted by Imira View Post
I'm not convinced that Liston was more skilled than Johnson due to boxing developments over the years. Liston wasn't particularly skilled at fighting out of a clinch, parrying or checking a jab. Johnson could do all of these.
Really? I think you should watch some of Johnson's fights instead of going by feeling and extrapolation; Johnson barely had to deal with any opponent skilled enough to jab him from a distance or throw any combination from the outside. Punch, clinch, throw, wrestle, uppercut, wrestle some more, get separated, and repeat. Nothing like boxing post-20's.

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And John Ruiz has forty years "of development" on Liston so I guess he beats Sonny ?

Johnson would make a monkey out of Sonny.
The key difference that you're forgetting here is that in Johnson's time:

a) Boxing had just transpired from a bareknuckle, half-wrestling style without ten count, time or number based rounds and scorecards to something completely different. As a consequence, the optimal fighting style was different as well, but not yet found. Johnson was ahead of his time, but far behind guys from Liston's time, who actually had to deal with jabs, combination punchers, guys that weighed in above the middleweight limit, etc.

b) In Liston's time, there were a lot more boxers, more people, easier means of traveling, tv, etc. All of this improves the grant knowledge and experience
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Old 12-13-2009, 02:11 PM   #21
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Default Re: Dreamfight: Jack Johnson (1910) vs Sonny Liston (1962) - who would win?

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Originally Posted by ChrisPontius View Post
Liston would crush him.

Well done, getting those words out. Bet it hurt
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Old 12-13-2009, 05:13 PM   #22
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Default Re: Dreamfight: Jack Johnson (1910) vs Sonny Liston (1962) - who would win?

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Originally Posted by ChrisPontius View Post
Really? I think you should watch some of Johnson's fights instead of going by feeling and extrapolation; Johnson barely had to deal with any opponent skilled enough to jab him from a distance or throw any combination from the outside. Punch, clinch, throw, wrestle, uppercut, wrestle some more, get separated, and repeat. Nothing like boxing post-20's.
Willard's jab from a distance was (within reason) as good as any fighter today, even superheavyweights.

If you replace the throw and wrestle with hug, you get Punch, clinch, throw, hug separate and repeat, you get pretty much a description of most of todays fights.

Quote:

The key difference that you're forgetting here is that in Johnson's time:

a) Boxing had just transpired from a bareknuckle, half-wrestling style without ten count, time or number based rounds and scorecards to something completely different. As a consequence, the optimal fighting style was different as well, but not yet found. Johnson was ahead of his time, but far behind guys from Liston's time, who actually had to deal with jabs, combination punchers, guys that weighed in above the middleweight limit, etc.
Boxing had just transpired?

Corbett won the title in 1892. From this point, all fights were Queensbury rules. Johnson won his last competitive match in 1932. That is 40 years later that his style was still successful. Interestingly, Sonny Liston was dead less than 40 years after Johnson retired. He debuted only 20 years after Johnson retired.

Rules did change, which certainly helped Liston's style, but the flip side of this is that evolution of the sport is not the correct word. It is taking away effective skills, not totally dissimilar to future generations outlawing head shots. If they do that, it is doubtful that their fighters would beat current fighters, because they would not have the head punching skills (they could do it, but it is doubtful). Without clinch fighting skills modern fighters are at a big disadvantage. NOt impossible but a big disadvantage. That is not a sport evolving, it is watering it down.

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b) In Liston's time, there were a lot more boxers, more people, easier means of traveling, tv, etc. All of this improves the grant knowledge and experience
I am not so sure that there were more actual boxers in these times. There was a greater population and the other points are valid points.

But, for some reason, knowledge does not seem as important in boxing as harsh circumstances. The best boxers (almost always) come from those who are raised in the harshest (lowest income) areas. It is a common fact that as science advances, so too does living comfort, even for the hardest hit areas of society. This would tend to suggest that the best boxers are raised in the toughest times, which was definitely Johnson's time. It isnt an infallible theory, but it is definitely worth some thought.

For the record, Liston was a great fighter in any era. Not as good a record as JOhnson, but still a very, very good record and he has every chance in this one. I think it is close to a 50-50 call.
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Old 12-14-2009, 02:47 AM   #23
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Default Re: Dreamfight: Jack Johnson (1910) vs Sonny Liston (1962) - who would win?

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Originally Posted by Boilermaker View Post
Willard's jab from a distance was (within reason) as good as any fighter today, even superheavyweights.
You're joking, right?

Willard's jab as good as Wlad's. You made my day.



p.s. who won when Willard fought Johnson?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Boilermaker
If you replace the throw and wrestle with hug, you get Punch, clinch, throw, hug separate and repeat, you get pretty much a description of most of todays fights.
Nope, today they actually throw combinations, use a high guard, can work from a distance, etc. And even more so in the 60's, which is what we're considering here.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Boilermaker
Boxing had just transpired?

Corbett won the title in 1892. From this point, all fights were Queensbury rules. Johnson won his last competitive match in 1932. That is 40 years later that his style was still successful. Interestingly, Sonny Liston was dead less than 40 years after Johnson retired. He debuted only 20 years after Johnson retired.
Yes, gloved boxing had just transpired. As you say, each bout after 1892 was gloved. When did Johnson start boxing? 1897. So, he learned his skills after modern boxing was a grand total of six years old. Yes, that counts as "gloved boxing had just transpired". Especially since in those days, communications, wealth, traveling, etc, all was light years behind/harder than today, which makes knowledge spread much slower. Johnson was ahead of his time, but his opponents were all punch, clinch clinch clinch clinch, punch, types.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Boilermaker
Rules did change, which certainly helped Liston's style
This statement shows me that you don't UNDERSTAND what i'm saying.

The rule change didn't "help" Liston's style. Liston's style was developed because it suited best to the rules. Evolution. You're pretending as if it was some sort of coincidence that the rules aided his style.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Boilermaker
, but the flip side of this is that evolution of the sport is not the correct word. It is taking away effective skills, not totally dissimilar to future generations outlawing head shots. If they do that, it is doubtful that their fighters would beat current fighters, because they would not have the head punching skills (they could do it, but it is doubtful). Without clinch fighting skills modern fighters are at a big disadvantage. NOt impossible but a big disadvantage. That is not a sport evolving, it is watering it down.
The sport is changing, and as a consequence, the fighters are evolving.

This doesn't mean that Liston's style is "better" than Johnson's in general, or vice versa, but it certainly IS better than Johnson's if we're talking about a 12 or 15 round gloved fight, with 3 minute rounds. Which we are.

For the same reasons, Johnson's style is better than Liston's if we're talking about unlimited rounds that end when one falls, carrying tiny gloves. But that isn't the topic of discussion.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Boilermaker
I am not so sure that there were more actual boxers in these times. There was a greater population and the other points are valid points.

But, for some reason, knowledge does not seem as important in boxing as harsh circumstances. The best boxers (almost always) come from those who are raised in the harshest (lowest income) areas. It is a common fact that as science advances, so too does living comfort, even for the hardest hit areas of society. This would tend to suggest that the best boxers are raised in the toughest times, which was definitely Johnson's time. It isnt an infallible theory, but it is definitely worth some thought.
In Johnson's time, black people were barely allowed to compete with the top white fighters (who were garbage at that time). Half of the heavyweight contenders were lightheavyweights or even smaller. They all fought in a primitive, bareknuckle style. No, i'm not impressed at all by the heavyweights 1900-1910, with Johnson and Jeffries being the exception in terms of greatness, not head to head.

It's not like Liston had an easy, comfortable youth in the 30's, anyway. Evander Holyfield probably lived a much more luxureous life than Johnson did, but let's face it, there is nothing you can take away from his toughness.

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Well done, getting those words out. Bet it hurt
Yes, it was hard and painful to give birth to that statement, but it had to be done.
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Old 12-14-2009, 03:21 AM   #24
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Default Re: Dreamfight: Jack Johnson (1910) vs Sonny Liston (1962) - who would win?

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Originally Posted by Seamus View Post
Good lord.

Johnson twirls his fists a la Popeye- what passes for defensive wizardry in these parts- and promptly eat a jab that makes Choynski's right hand seem like a spring breeze. Rights and lefts follow, confusing Johnson as he is used to middleweights, old men and former fatties on the comeback trail after years. His attempts to tie up and met with rib-bruising hooks.

A handle-bar mustachioed ref lets this go 4. A modern ref stops it in 2.

You forgot to mention one certain smaller fighter that Johnson defeated in discounting his accomplisments. That being arguably the greatest single fighter that ever lived: Sam Langford. Jack Dempsey's manager said right to his face that they were looking for something easier when Langford asked him why he could not secure a fight with the Manassa Mauler. This was about 1918 or so when Dempsey was just a year away from the title winning effort against Willard. Jonhson's resume includes victories against ATG boxers like Fitzsimmons, Jefferies, Lanford, Ketchel. Besides Patterson who of great quality did Liston beat? Think about it.
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Old 12-14-2009, 04:24 AM   #25
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Default Re: Dreamfight: Jack Johnson (1910) vs Sonny Liston (1962) - who would win?

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Originally Posted by Sardu View Post
You forgot to mention one certain smaller fighter that Johnson defeated in discounting his accomplisments. That being arguably the greatest single fighter that ever lived: Sam Langford. Jack Dempsey's manager said right to his face that they were looking for something easier when Langford asked him why he could not secure a fight with the Manassa Mauler. This was about 1918 or so when Dempsey was just a year away from the title winning effort against Willard. Jonhson's resume includes victories against ATG boxers like Fitzsimmons, Jefferies, Lanford, Ketchel. Besides Patterson who of great quality did Liston beat? Think about it.
You call them ATG's, but let's face it: Fitzsimmons was beyond shot, Ketchel a middleweight, Langford was NOT EVEN a middleweight yet and avoided by Johnson when he hit his peak, and Jeffries was washed up after 5 years of inactivity.

That is not to say Johnson's resume isn't good, it is, but you're making it sound a lot better than it is. When Langford was having success at heavyweight and at his peak, Johnson didn't fight him. Neither did Dempsey, but he wasn't champion yet. Johnson was.
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Old 12-14-2009, 04:34 AM   #26
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Default Re: Dreamfight: Jack Johnson (1910) vs Sonny Liston (1962) - who would win?

Chris, how "modern" would you say Tunney and Demspey looked?
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Old 12-14-2009, 04:43 AM   #27
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Default Re: Dreamfight: Jack Johnson (1910) vs Sonny Liston (1962) - who would win?

Quite modern. In fact, i'd say they are the first "modern" gloved boxers. Like Johnson, they were ahead of their time, but also an essential 10 years of development ahead of Johnson. Dempsey and Tunney did keep their hands low a bit more than they should've, and didn't quite use the high guard all the time, but they weren't constantly low like their predecessors. They often punch from the hip instead of from the chin. Tyson's guard is much more tight than Dempsey's, although janitor will have you believe otherwise.

One thing i've always wondered is how Harry Wills measures up in this respect. Given his outstanding record, i'm guessing he had a modern, ahead-of-his-time style as well, but we'll never know. Eyewitness records don't really tell you much, as they see it in their own, comparatively primitive, perspective and are easily misinterpreted because we have such a different concept of the terms.
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Old 12-14-2009, 05:02 AM   #28
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Default Re: Dreamfight: Jack Johnson (1910) vs Sonny Liston (1962) - who would win?

I'm nursing a pet-theory that Elbows McFadden wore the high-guard long before it was fashionable. This is based upon nothing other than his reputation for blocking body blows with his elbows.
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Old 12-14-2009, 09:35 AM   #29
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Default Re: Dreamfight: Jack Johnson (1910) vs Sonny Liston (1962) - who would win?

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Originally Posted by Sardu View Post
You forgot to mention one certain smaller fighter that Johnson defeated in discounting his accomplisments. That being arguably the greatest single fighter that ever lived: Sam Langford. Jack Dempsey's manager said right to his face that they were looking for something easier when Langford asked him why he could not secure a fight with the Manassa Mauler. This was about 1918 or so when Dempsey was just a year away from the title winning effort against Willard. Jonhson's resume includes victories against ATG boxers like Fitzsimmons, Jefferies, Lanford, Ketchel. Besides Patterson who of great quality did Liston beat? Think about it.

Kethcel is an all time great....at middleweight. they had to put risers in his shoes to make him look somewhat close to johnsons height for pictures. cant count that as a signature win. thats like wlad fighting froch or kessler today.
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Old 12-14-2009, 10:37 AM   #30
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Default Re: Dreamfight: Jack Johnson (1910) vs Sonny Liston (1962) - who would win?

Look at the ease with which Ali handled Liston. Johnson has just as good if not better defense, but less speed. All in all i think Johnson takes this, although Listons punch should never be ruled out.
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