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Old 11-17-2007, 08:00 PM   #16
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Default Re: Tyson- did he ever get close to his true potential?

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Originally Posted by ChrisPontius
Some people have to learn to accept that a destroyer never lasts long in boxing. Potential or not. When you win as easy as Tyson does, you get arrogant and start thinking you're invincible. Whether you're from the street or not. It happened to Foreman, it happened to Liston, it happened to Louis, it happened to Duran, etc etc; it is bound to happen to anyone with that kind of success.

His style in the ring guarantees a short peak and that style in the ring usually comes with a wild lifestyle that makes for an even shorter peak.

If Tyson stayed focused he would've probably had more success, but i strongly doubt he could've broken Louis or Ali in terms of longitivity.

It's the Tyson's and Foreman's that are made out to be unbeatable, it's the "human" Ali's and Holmes' that turn out to have the greater career and in Foreman's case, take that aura of invincibility away.
Duran had a rather long prime that lasted until june 1980
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Old 11-17-2007, 09:26 PM   #17
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Default Re: Tyson- did he ever get close to his true potential?

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Originally Posted by josak
He probably hit his peak around the time of the Spinks bout. He certainly didn't reach his full potential career-wise, but I think he was as good as he ever could have been when he fought Spinks.
I agree 100%. He did reach his full potential as a fighter, but fell short career wise. In about 1988 or so, he was as good as he was ever gonna get.
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Old 11-17-2007, 09:28 PM   #18
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Default Re: Tyson- did he ever get close to his true potential?

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Originally Posted by BritInvasion
He exceeded his potential. To do what Mikey did with his mental state is quite phenomonal. It is too easy to forget the importance of mental well being (for want of a much better phrasing) amoung the top 0.0000001% of athletes, particularly in the ultimate 1on1 sport. There would always be something that would derail Tyson. Sure, he lost Cus, but that he did not implode at a juncture before becoming Champ shows how far he went beyond what he ought to have.
Give Lewis McCall's chin, give Marcaino Lewis's physicality, give Holmes Marciano's popularity, give Foreman Holmes's skills, give Holyfield Foreman's power. It all adds up to the same thing. You can't replace what ain't there. Give Tyson Lewis's background, mental state, serenity. Maybe he would have done more. Maybe he wouldn't. But it weren't there in the first place.

A (sub-six foot guy in the era of the 'superHW) messed up, border-line pyscho, likes the odd substance, prone to depression, full of self-loathing, who got the father he never had in a 70+ year old boxing expert, who wins the HW Championship of the world? Yeah, he overacheived.
Great post.
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Old 11-17-2007, 09:30 PM   #19
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Default Re: Tyson- did he ever get close to his true potential?

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Originally Posted by BritInvasion
He exceeded his potential. To do what Mikey did with his mental state is quite phenomonal. It is too easy to forget the importance of mental well being (for want of a much better phrasing) amoung the top 0.0000001% of athletes, particularly in the ultimate 1on1 sport. There would always be something that would derail Tyson. Sure, he lost Cus, but that he did not implode at a juncture before becoming Champ shows how far he went beyond what he ought to have.
Give Lewis McCall's chin, give Marcaino Lewis's physicality, give Holmes Marciano's popularity, give Foreman Holmes's skills, give Holyfield Foreman's power. It all adds up to the same thing. You can't replace what ain't there. Give Tyson Lewis's background, mental state, serenity. Maybe he would have done more. Maybe he wouldn't. But it weren't there in the first place.

A (sub-six foot guy in the era of the 'superHW) messed up, border-line pyscho, likes the odd substance, prone to depression, full of self-loathing, who got the father he never had in a 70+ year old boxing expert, who wins the HW Championship of the world? Yeah, he overacheived.

Very good post!
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Old 11-17-2007, 09:49 PM   #20
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Default Re: Tyson- did he ever get close to his true potential?

Quote:
Originally Posted by BritInvasion
He exceeded his potential. To do what Mikey did with his mental state is quite phenomonal. It is too easy to forget the importance of mental well being (for want of a much better phrasing) amoung the top 0.0000001% of athletes, particularly in the ultimate 1on1 sport. There would always be something that would derail Tyson. Sure, he lost Cus, but that he did not implode at a juncture before becoming Champ shows how far he went beyond what he ought to have.
Give Lewis McCall's chin, give Marcaino Lewis's physicality, give Holmes Marciano's popularity, give Foreman Holmes's skills, give Holyfield Foreman's power. It all adds up to the same thing. You can't replace what ain't there. Give Tyson Lewis's background, mental state, serenity. Maybe he would have done more. Maybe he wouldn't. But it weren't there in the first place.

A (sub-six foot guy in the era of the 'superHW) messed up, border-line pyscho, likes the odd substance, prone to depression, full of self-loathing, who got the father he never had in a 70+ year old boxing expert, who wins the HW Championship of the world? Yeah, he overacheived.
This is probably about the best sumation of Tyson reaching his potential that I've yet heard.

We also have to remember that he was only 20 years old, and in addition to losing D'Amato, lost his mother, and soon Jim Jacobs, all around the same time or very close. That is a lot of tradgedy for a young man of 20 to overcome. Especially one with so little education, maturity, and lack of people in the world who cared about him. Let's face it, once his family was out of the picture, Tyson's only surrounding cast, were the people who were there to gain monetarily from his career. In 1988, he went through an ugly divorce, aledgedly attempted suicide, had his best trainer fired, and not long after lost his sister in 1989. Tyson was all but maybe 22 when this all happened.

Despite all the caos in his life, Tyson managed to become the youngest champion in the history of the sport, unify the title, had 10 defenses, and was undefeated in his first 37 fights. He also later became a repeat champion after serving his 4 year jail term.

Yeah, I'd say he fulfilled his potential.
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Old 11-18-2007, 06:15 AM   #21
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Default Re: Tyson- did he ever get close to his true potential?

Quote:
Originally Posted by ChrisPontius
Some people have to learn to accept that a destroyer never lasts long in boxing. Potential or not. When you win as easy as Tyson does, you get arrogant and start thinking you're invincible. Whether you're from the street or not. It happened to Foreman, it happened to Liston, it happened to Louis, it happened to Duran, etc etc; it is bound to happen to anyone with that kind of success.

His style in the ring guarantees a short peak and that style in the ring usually comes with a wild lifestyle that makes for an even shorter peak.

If Tyson stayed focused he would've probably had more success, but i strongly doubt he could've broken Louis or Ali in terms of longitivity.

It's the Tyson's and Foreman's that are made out to be unbeatable, it's the "human" Ali's and Holmes' that turn out to have the greater career and in Foreman's case, take that aura of invincibility away.
But Foreman, Liston and Louis are the heavyweights that have lasted the longest?
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Old 11-18-2007, 07:39 AM   #22
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Default Re: Tyson- did he ever get close to his true potential?

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Originally Posted by Griip
But Foreman, Liston and Louis are the heavyweights that have lasted the longest?
Foreman and Liston, how so?

Foreman beat up mostly tomato cans and a few borderline contenders between 1970-1973. Then he destroys Frazier and Norton. One year later he gets embarrased by Ali, gets one more noteworthy win (Lyle) where he was one inch away from losing and then gets embarrassed again, by Young and retires.
So basically he had 4 good years. It takes a full 10 years before he launches his comeback against tomato cans, takes a lot of questionable decisions against mediocrities (Schulz, Savarese, Stewart), loses one-sided to good fighters (Holyfield, Morrison) and gets one win (Moorer).
That's not exactly long dominance.


Liston was dominant between '58 and '62, although it is noteworthy that he only started beating ranked contenders from the late '59. If we include '63 then he has a grand total of 4 years of domination untill getting embarrassed by a light hitting 8 to 1 underdog. Not exactly long dominance.


Now Joe Louis, he is indeed the exception to the rule, although it did take a hard beating from Schmeling to get him to get motivated.


Duran as mentioned earlier is another exception. His longetivity, especially given his agressive style and wild life style is more than a miracle. Truely one of the greats.
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Old 11-18-2007, 12:47 PM   #23
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Default Re: Tyson- did he ever get close to his true potential?

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Originally Posted by josak
He probably hit his peak around the time of the Spinks bout. He certainly didn't reach his full potential career-wise, but I think he was as good as he ever could have been when he fought Spinks.
Absurd, he was a kid when he beat Spinks. He could have been much greater than that. What a waste of talent
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Old 11-19-2007, 05:45 AM   #24
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Default Re: Tyson- did he ever get close to his true potential?

Tyson is in many ways a walking dichotomy. Physically he had gifts that most heavyweights could only dream of, even some greats.
On the other side of the coin, he was mentally such a disaster area one wonders how he achieved anything.
I don't think that Tyson was mentally weak per se, because as noted he went through a hell of a lot of crap for someone so young. He did well to stay focussed and in shape, at least for fights, but a lot of the misery that befell him was of his own doing.

As Chris also said, his style basically ensured a rather short prime. He was a short guy (for a heavyweight) fighting in an era of giants. Two other short fighters, Tua and Mathis jnr, didn't get close to Tyson's level. He did really well to destroy guys much taller and often heavier than himself. People give Evander a lot of credit for coming up and being a "small" heavyweight, but Tyson was barely any bigger. In fact, when they fought Evander was more or less the same size.

Where I think Tyson fell short was that, despite all the negatives, he could have held onto the title longer. Maybe his absolute peak would have come and gone, but with the right people (and him having his head screwed on straight) he could have held the title for a few years longer, until Bowe or Lewis reached their respective peaks.
He certainly had the abilty; the application of effort was no longer there though.
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Old 11-19-2007, 10:15 AM   #25
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Default Re: Tyson- did he ever get close to his true potential?

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Originally Posted by fists of fury
Tyson is in many ways a walking dichotomy. Physically he had gifts that most heavyweights could only dream of, even some greats.
On the other side of the coin, he was mentally such a disaster area one wonders how he achieved anything.
I don't think that Tyson was mentally weak per se, because as noted he went through a hell of a lot of crap for someone so young. He did well to stay focussed and in shape, at least for fights, but a lot of the misery that befell him was of his own doing.

As Chris also said, his style basically ensured a rather short prime. He was a short guy (for a heavyweight) fighting in an era of giants. Two other short fighters, Tua and Mathis jnr, didn't get close to Tyson's level. He did really well to destroy guys much taller and often heavier than himself. People give Evander a lot of credit for coming up and being a "small" heavyweight, but Tyson was barely any bigger. In fact, when they fought Evander was more or less the same size.

Where I think Tyson fell short was that, despite all the negatives, he could have held onto the title longer. Maybe his absolute peak would have come and gone, but with the right people (and him having his head screwed on straight) he could have held the title for a few years longer, until Bowe or Lewis reached their respective peaks.
He certainly had the abilty; the application of effort was no longer there though.
The Key word being the application of effort was no longer there. That is probably why people are down on Tyson; he was too talented to let all slip away the way he let it slip away and to that effect he didnt reach his potential in the ring because he was good enough to do more.
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Old 11-19-2007, 10:56 AM   #26
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Default Re: Tyson- did he ever get close to his true potential?

[quote]
Quote:
Originally Posted by ChrisPontius
Foreman and Liston, how so?

Foreman beat up mostly tomato cans and a few borderline contenders between 1970-1973. Then he destroys Frazier and Norton. One year later he gets embarrased by Ali, gets one more noteworthy win (Lyle) where he was one inch away from losing and then gets embarrassed again, by Young and retires.
So basically he had 4 good years. It takes a full 10 years before he launches his comeback against tomato cans, takes a lot of questionable decisions against mediocrities (Schulz, Savarese, Stewart), loses one-sided to good fighters (Holyfield, Morrison) and gets one win (Moorer).
That's not exactly long dominance.
I'm sorry to knit pick, bit this a rather harsh post if I ever read one. Everytime Foreman's name comes up, you place most of your emphasis on him fighting tomato cans, which is actually an exageration of the truth. Foreman really didn't fight that many cans, but rather a lot of journeyman, clubfighters, and trialhoarses who were fairly tuff fighters, that gave other contenders trouble and even upset them on occasion.

I grew up following Foreman's comeback in the 80's and 90's very closely, and while most of those guys weren't world beaters, they weren't tomato cans either. A tomato can is usually a guy who loses most of his fights, and can't even come close to beating a good fighter. These are the fighters who's records are usually around 9-16-4-5. How many men in his second or first career did Foreman fight like that? Most of the men Foreman faced in his comeback were of reasonable age raging from mid 20's to early 30's, while he was an ancient 40+ years old. The other issue is that he didn't exactly struggle with most of them but rather destroyed many of these men. The only fight that I'll call a robbery was his win over Axel Shultz, but when you take into account that he was arguably robbed against Shannon Briggs, its an even trade off. Schultz, Briggs, Stewart, Rodriguez, Grimsley, Savarese, Moorer, Cooper, and several others, were not tomato cans, and neither were most of the build up fighters leading up to those matches.

Foreman, was a legitimate 2 time lineal champion, who was also an olympic gold medalist, and holds claim to being the oldest champion in history, as well as having the highest win/KO ratio of any lineal champion. He was stopped only once in 81 fights to what many consider to be the greatest fighter of all time, and mainly due to exhaustion. He destroyed a few hall of famers, and crushed two generations worth of savy fighters, who were not always great but certainly worthy of being professionals.

If you're going to comment on a fighter's whole career, then please do it fairly. Foreman was a well acheived fighter, and he does not deserve to have his accomplishments summed up as " fighting tomato cans."

Last edited by mr. magoo; 11-19-2007 at 12:02 PM.
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