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Old 07-01-2007, 06:08 PM   #31
cross_trainer
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Default Re: Most athletic boxer ever

Professor William Miller

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Boxing

* Australian champion, London Prize Ring Rules
* Defeated Joe Goss on points in a gloved boxing match

Wrestling

* Greco-Roman wrestling champion of Australia
* Claimed the world Greco-Roman wrestling champion; certainly one of the best in the world
* Drew with American Greco-Roman champion William Muldoon

Gymnastics

* Skilled gymnast and gymnastics teacher

Weightlifting

* Claimed the weightlifting championship of Australia
* Drew with world weightlifting champion Richard A. Pennell.

Fencing

* Won the broadsword championship of Australia

Long Distance Walking

* Claimed the pedestrian championship of Australia, defeating Duncan C. Ross
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Old 07-01-2007, 06:12 PM   #32
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"The Broadsword Championship of Australia".

Don't mess with that guy.
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Old 07-01-2007, 06:15 PM   #33
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Originally Posted by McGrain


"The Broadsword Championship of Australia".

Don't mess with that guy.
He'd punch you, throw you on the ground, cut you in half with his broadsword, drop a 200 lb. dumbbell on your head, and then walk 200 miles in two days to escape the local police.
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Old 07-01-2007, 06:18 PM   #34
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cross_trainer
He'd punch you, throw you on the ground, cut you in half with his broadsword, drop a 200 lb. dumbbell on your head, and then walk 200 miles in two days to escape the local police.


Your only chance would be to make friends with him.

But he doesn't look like the type that would make friends easily.

Surely the dumbell would be unnecessary after he chopped you in half?!
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Old 07-01-2007, 06:21 PM   #35
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Default Re: Most athletic boxer ever

Quote:
Originally Posted by McGrain


Your only chance would be to make friends with him.

But he doesn't look like the type that would make friends easily.
I've read a book he wrote in the 1890's. Seems like a reasonable enough chap, actually. And since he taught many of the top Australian athletes during the 1880's, 90's, and 00's, he was probably a fairly personable guy.


Quote:
Originally Posted by McGrain
Surely the dumbell would be unnecessary after he chopped you in half?!
Miller assumes that all of his opponents have his own recuperative powers. He is taking no chances.
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Old 07-01-2007, 06:23 PM   #36
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Default Re: Most athletic boxer ever

Quote:
Originally Posted by cross_trainer
Professor William Miller

[Only registered and activated users can see links. ]


Boxing

* Australian champion, London Prize Ring Rules
* Defeated Joe Goss on points in a gloved boxing match

Wrestling

* Greco-Roman wrestling champion of Australia
* Claimed the world Greco-Roman wrestling champion; certainly one of the best in the world
* Drew with American Greco-Roman champion William Muldoon

Gymnastics

* Skilled gymnast and gymnastics teacher

Weightlifting

* Claimed the weightlifting championship of Australia
* Drew with world weightlifting champion Richard A. Pennell.

Fencing

* Won the broadsword championship of Australia

Long Distance Walking

* Claimed the pedestrian championship of Australia, defeating Duncan C. Ross
We have a winner and I have a new avatar.

In terms of gloved-boxing, I'd go with James J. Jefferies. A proven star of track, field and ring, with strongman feats to add.

Did Scotland's own Donald Dinnie ever do any boxing? If so, he'd be a definte contender. Of course, he would be more an athlete that boxed rather than a boxer than excelled at athletics.
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Old 07-01-2007, 06:25 PM   #37
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Originally Posted by cross_trainer
I've read a book he wrote in the 1890's. Seems like a reasonable enough chap, actually.
I don't beleive it - see if you can think of a viable opponent for him.
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Old 07-01-2007, 06:31 PM   #38
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Originally Posted by The Kurgan
We have a winner and I have a new avatar.

In terms of gloved-boxing, I'd go with James J. Jefferies. A proven star of track, field and ring, with strongman feats to add.

Did Scotland's own Donald Dinnie ever do any boxing? If so, he'd be a definte contender. Of course, he would be more an athlete that boxed rather than a boxer than excelled at athletics.
He didn't box per se, but he did claim to have a fight with world champion Jem Mace after Mace was rude to the troupe of Scottish athletes he was travelling with. The fight was rather brief--Dinnie grabbed him and threw him on the ground before he got a punch off.

There is the suspicion that some of Miller's bouts against high-level opponents--like those of many of his contemporaries--may have been fixed. He was clearly one of the best (top 10) in the world regardless, though.

He had several contests with Donald Dinnie, incidentally--weightlifting and wrestling. Dinnie had the edge in wrestling in anything but the Greco-Roman style, and probably weightlifting as well (Miller supposedly won their lifting contest on "better technique" even though he lifted less weight). In any event, Miller was definitely a phenomenal athlete, and it is fitting to class him a bit behind Dinnie as one of the greatest athletes of the mid-to-late 19th century.
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Old 07-01-2007, 06:38 PM   #39
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Originally Posted by hobgoblin
It could not have been a "real contest". It was probably just a show, like Muhammad Ali losing to someone. I find this very hard to believe! No way.
I remember watching that race as it happened on television, and I seem to have a distinct memory of Carl Lewis laughing as he came around to finish the last part of the race. But then again, I also remember that Holyfield (who was flying pretty good) was out in front by a clear margin when Carl did start with that though, so it may have possibly been a "can't believe he's going to beat me" type of chuckle in an embarrassment sort of thing.
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Old 07-01-2007, 06:40 PM   #40
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Quote:
Originally Posted by McGrain
I don't beleive it - see if you can think of a viable opponent for him.
In terms of sheer athleticism? Hmmm...

Well, he has Jeffries beaten for sheer versatility (although Jeffries has twenty-odd pounds on him, ironically).

Barclay Allardice might qualify--the best walker, sprinter, weightlifter, amateur boxer, and boxing trainer in England during the very early 19th century. Also noted for walking 1000 miles in 1000 CONSECUTIVE hours--a feat that has rarely been achieved by subsequent generations. However, the talent pool he was up against was not very large.

Conteh is, of course, another choice. The Superstars competition is a fairly good test of all-around athleticism.

Duncan C. Ross may qualify as well--he was one of the top track-and-field men in America (shot, hammer, 56 lb. shot, high jump, broad jump, standing high jump, 100 yards, hammer, 56 lb. weight, standing broad jump), top wrestlers in America, dabbled in fencing, and a collar-and-elbow wrestling champion. He did seem to have dabbled in boxing, but not seriously enough to be included. Miller was probably better anyway.

George Benedict was a gymnastics and track-and-field teacher, as well as the best amateur boxer in the West and the American champion club-swinger (very popular in those days--picture Fred Flintstone sized clubs swung in aesthetically pleasing patterns).



Yep, it looks like Miller wins here.
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Old 07-01-2007, 06:40 PM   #41
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cross_trainer
He'd punch you, throw you on the ground, cut you in half with his broadsword, drop a 200 lb. dumbbell on your head, and then walk 200 miles in two days to escape the local police.
Funny stuff, ct.
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Old 07-01-2007, 06:43 PM   #42
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cross_trainer
He didn't box per se, but he did claim to have a fight with world champion Jem Mace after Mace was rude to the troupe of Scottish athletes he was travelling with. The fight was rather brief--Dinnie grabbed him and threw him on the ground before he got a punch off.
It doesn't surprise me. I'd pick Donald Dinnie to kill any boxer in history in a street fight.

Quote:
Originally Posted by cross_trainer
There is the suspicion that some of Miller's bouts against high-level opponents--like those of many of his contemporaries--may have been fixed. He was clearly one of the best (top 10) in the world regardless, though.
It must be remembered that a LOT of boxers could have had fixed fights, from 18th century bareknuckle boxers to Sonny Liston (and even later).

Quote:
Originally Posted by cross_trainer
He had several contests with Donald Dinnie, incidentally--weightlifting and wrestling. Dinnie had the edge in wrestling in anything but the Greco-Roman style,
That would make sense. I would imagine that, since the Greco-Roman style has never really caught on here in Scotland, Dinnie would be less experienced. Incidentally, in my opinion, the Greco-Roman wrestling rules make for far less interesting contests than free-style or backhold wresling.

Quote:
Originally Posted by cross_trainer
and probably weightlifting as well (Miller supposedly won their lifting contest on "better technique" even though he lifted less weight).
That does sound a bit dodgy, but perhaps they didn't have our modern approach to bad form (ie. disqualify anything that isn't 100% kosher).

I wonder what lifts they used: this would be before the pre-eminence of the barbell snatch/clean and jerk/press triumvirate that would dominate much of Olympic weightlifting's history. I seem to remember that single-armed barbell lifts and bent presses (polar opposites in terms of technique and range of motion) were very popular back then.

Quote:
Originally Posted by cross_trainer
In any event, Miller was definitely a phenomenal athlete, and it is fitting to class him a bit behind Dinnie as one of the greatest athletes of the mid-to-late 19th century.
I'm particularly impressed by his sword-fighting skills, a sport that is now pretty much forgotten in the West.
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Old 07-01-2007, 06:43 PM   #43
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Default Re: Most athletic boxer ever

Quote:
Originally Posted by cross_trainer
In terms of sheer athleticism? Hmmm...

Well, he has Jeffries beaten for sheer versatility (although Jeffries has twenty-odd pounds on him, ironically).

Barclay Allardice might qualify--the best walker, sprinter, weightlifter, amateur boxer, and boxing trainer in England during the very early 19th century. Also noted for walking 1000 miles in 1000 CONSECUTIVE hours--a feat that has rarely been achieved by subsequent generations. However, the talent pool he was up against was not very large.

Conteh is, of course, another choice. The Superstars competition is a fairly good test of all-around athleticism.

Duncan C. Ross may qualify as well--he was one of the top track-and-field men in America (shot, hammer, 56 lb. shot, high jump, broad jump, standing high jump, 100 yards, hammer, 56 lb. weight, standing broad jump), top wrestlers in America, dabbled in fencing, and a collar-and-elbow wrestling champion. He did seem to have dabbled in boxing, but not seriously enough to be included. Miller was probably better anyway.

George Benedict was a gymnastics and track-and-field teacher, as well as the best amateur boxer in the West and the American champion club-swinger (very popular in those days--picture Fred Flintstone sized clubs swung in aesthetically pleasing patterns).



Yep, it looks like Miller wins here.
Those guys are all marvels. Wish I'd heard more about them before. They'd have given Jim Thorpe a run for his money.
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Old 07-01-2007, 09:24 PM   #44
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Quote:
Originally Posted by john garfield
Those guys are all marvels. Wish I'd heard more about them before. They'd have given Jim Thorpe a run for his money.
Hmmmm.....JG, how do you suppose Thorpe would have done as a boxer? (Heck, he succeeded at every other sport he tried.)
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Old 07-01-2007, 10:25 PM   #45
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It's Jim Jefferies, I think. He was a fast in the 100m, a good Greco Roman wrestler, and could have played anysport he wanted to.

Although just read the posts about William miller, he might take the lead.
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