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Old 11-15-2007, 04:00 PM   #31
TBooze
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Default Re: 10 fighters with the most difficult styles to fight against

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Originally Posted by ChrisPontius
Glad to see there are still Ocasio fans, if there ever were any.
Always liked Jaws; sure he was boring, but he taught Lewis a thing or two; Mercer too.
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Old 11-15-2007, 04:41 PM   #32
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Default Re: 10 fighters with the most difficult styles to fight against

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Originally Posted by ChrisPontius
Good list... can you tell more about Sweet Saoul Mamby? I don't know much about him.
Chris, hopefully somebody will eventually post his performances against Monroe Brooks, Termite Watkins or Esteban DeJesus on-line. (Mamby met Watkins on the inside, outscoring Maurice two and three punches to one, showing that he could win in close quarters, as well as on the outside.)

Excellent handspeed. Smooth ability to subtly slip punches. (Hence his nickname.) Very possibly the most disciplined boxer of his generation. Even in his forties, he ironically won several of his bouts by wearing down his youthful opposition. A tremendously composed and cool competitor in the ring. His legs always looked strong and springy, almost like rubber bands.

Not usually a power puncher, though he truly could hit on those very rare occasions the spirit moved him to. Was flagrantly robbed of the decision when he challenged Saensak Muangsurin for the WBC Junior WW Title in 1977 (a verdict which even Muangsurin's partisan Thai audience found disturbing) and was arguably robbed of that same championship in his two matches against Leroy Haley. Between 1976 (when Duran and Cervantes outpointed him) and 1984 (when Billy Costello beat him up rather severely) it could be argued that he was the rightful winner of all his bouts.

His spotty record is deceiving, especially because of continual travel to the home regions of his opponents. What is not deceiving though is that he wasn't stopped until he was 46 years old, and only that one time, when the law of averages finally caught up with him. Boxwreck indicates that he took a knockdown against Jorge Vaca, another against Reyes Cruz, and did suffer that one TKO to Derrell Coley. Aside from these rare anomalies, he was incredibly durable. Although his record is spotty, the quality of his performances were remarkably consistent.

Conditioning wise, nobody could possibly be more representative of the primacy of skipping rope over joint grinding roadwork than Saoul. Even he surprised himself with his incredible longevity, but that's what can happen when a boxer always stays in shape between fights, and uses a jump rope to do it, instead of running on unforgiving surfaces.

Mamby's best performances could be used as instructional material. There seemed to be nothing he didn't do by the book. He was sometimes criticized for being dull, but not always the case, as his clinic against Monroe Brooks demonstrated. (His right hands were a work of art in that exhibition.) Maintained his hands in an excellent position to parry and counter.

I did see him score knockdowns with both his hook and cross. Like Willie Pep, he could have recorded a great many more stoppage wins than he managed, as his punching technique seemed fine. In both cases, the absence of more knockout wins would appear to be a matter of temperament, rather than a lack of firepower. His less emotional approach to the sport was undoubtedly crucial to his long career curve though.

If his fellow retired boxers had a vote for HOF induction, they might well vote Mamby in. His fellow professionals had tremendous respect for him. (That Larry Holmes hired him as his trainer, while Ali had him modeling a line of exercise gear Muhammad was marketing in the early 1980s should give you some idea of how well he's been regarded by some of the best in the game.)

Mamby boxed in around a dozen and a half different countries, and was probably better known world-wide during his title run than Aaron Pryor. A real pro's pro.
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Old 11-15-2007, 04:48 PM   #33
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Default Re: 10 fighters with the most difficult styles to fight against

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Originally Posted by ChrisPontius
Glad to see there are still Ocasio fans, if there ever were any.
Yeah, I guess being a fan of somebody with a difficult style is somewhat oxymoronic. Perhaps we should really be asking who the most boring fighters were. (John Ruiz and Mate Parlov come to mind immediately.)
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Old 11-15-2007, 06:06 PM   #34
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Default Re: 10 fighters with the most difficult styles to fight against

Let's add a few more:

Eusebio Pedroza: Generally had a height and reach advantage over his featherweight challengers, and his underrated jab and sound defense meant that he could make a very good living on the outside. That meant the opponent had to get in close, and that meant that he was entering into the type of down-and-dirty inside war that led to a long, slow beating in the later rounds. Slow starter, who always seemed to accelerate in the later rounds to get the nod in his fights. Infuriated a lot of observers during the course of his reign, and frustrated a lot of challengers.

Samart Payakaroon:

Former kickboxer liked to fight with his hands down by his waist, with his back against the ropes; and used impressive upper body movement to avoid punches and then counter with straight, hard shots. Probably could have enjoyed a pretty long reign as super bantamweight champ had it not been for the next fighter on this list...

Jeff Fenech:

Ultra-agressive fighter who charged in quickly and then whaled away with both hands. Insanely effective body attack, and tactics like putting his opponent in a head lock and then punching him behind his back could throw off even the most skilled boxer (ask Azumah Nelson). Not without skill, either, and could cut off the ring without too much difficult against even the most fleet-footed of opponents. And...to make matters worse, he was a hell of a puncher. Just a nightmare when he was at his best.

Daniel Zaragoza/ Manuel Medina:

Can't really separate the two, since they used very similar styles. Busy volume punchers who could fight all night, with defensive reflexes good enough to avoid getting hit with very many clean shots. Unless you landed something big, you were (and, in Medina's case, still are) in for a long, frustrating evening against fighters whom you'd think didn't possess the talent to win as much as they did (or have).
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Old 11-15-2007, 06:53 PM   #35
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Default Re: 10 fighters with the most difficult styles to fight against

James Toney... Slick and tricky .. masterful boxer witha great defence..

Jack Johnson.. A great defensive genius who had the kind of skills that would slip into any eras top 10....

Last edited by Dr Z; 09-20-2006 at 04:49 PM.
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Old 11-16-2007, 12:14 AM   #36
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Default Re: 10 fighters with the most difficult styles to fight against

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Originally Posted by Luigi1985
Valuev is also a candidate, his all-in-one-package of size, weight, chin, stamina is pretty nasty IMO...
What about that HUGE punching power? Lightning speed? etc. The guy is a beast!
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Old 11-16-2007, 12:48 AM   #37
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Default Re: 10 fighters with the most difficult styles to fight against

Perhaps Benny Leonard or Lew Tendler.
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Old 11-16-2007, 02:26 AM   #38
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Default Re: 10 fighters with the most difficult styles to fight against

I like the shout for Samart. He was a good boxer, but more importantly the greatest Muay Thai fighter of all time p4p. Mcgrain you said Monzon was a great and FAST puncher? From what I've seen of Monzon he's a very slow puncher; is there something I'm missing?
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Old 11-16-2007, 04:13 AM   #39
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Default Re: 10 fighters with the most difficult styles to fight against

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Originally Posted by RoccoMarciano
What about that HUGE punching power? Lightning speed? etc. The guy is a beast!

Don´t be sarcastic/ ironic. But believe me, everyone who fought him, said that he has a real nasty style to fight against (and the likes of Barrett, Ruiz, Vidoz, etc. fought also some other world-class- fighters, so they know what they´re talking about)...
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Old 11-16-2007, 09:08 AM   #40
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Default Re: 10 fighters with the most difficult styles to fight against

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Originally Posted by ChrisPontius
Good list... can you tell more about Sweet Saol Mamby? I don't know much about him.

From the late 70's when Mamby went to Venzuala to fight Antonio Cervantes to the Esteban Dejesus fight in the early 80 and beyond Mambey really honed his trade, he started out in N.Y. and learned from the gyms and school of hard Knocks, traveling and getting robbed vs some very good opposition, I remember the Esteban Dejesus fight as his peak performance, wearing Dejesus down and stopping him late in the fight,
Mamby was a 15 round fighter and in excellent shape, cut ,lanky,ripped and has a masterfull defence and an awkward offence, he was not always pretty but effective
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Old 11-16-2007, 01:37 PM   #41
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Default Re: 10 fighters with the most difficult styles to fight against

Slapsie Maxie, Gregorio Manuel Peralta and Harold Johnson are a few more names to add to the debate.
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Old 11-16-2007, 03:36 PM   #42
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Default Re: 10 fighters with the most difficult styles to fight against

The very quick defensive specialist with great jabs and quick feet seem to be the bane of almost all styles, save the supper aggressive swarmer who can catch up to them and force them to fight

I think the following fighters in their prime are very difficult to fight and look good against.

Jim Corbett

Benny Leonard

Gene Tunney

Muhammed Ali

Pernell Whitaker

Winky Wright

Joe Calzaghe
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