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Old 12-05-2007, 08:28 PM   #1
SuzieQ49
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Default Sonny Liston vs Lennox Lewis

I like Liston by early Kayo. Sonny Liston reminds me of randy moss, a freak of nature for his size. incredible talent to go along with his freakish physical tools(15" fist, 84" reach).

I think Liston was the better boxer than lennox and i can see him controlling lennox with the jab like bruno did, and unlike foreman liston didnt bull rush in. liston was methodical, smart he stayed back boxed utilized his long jab...liston wouldnt be caught red handed swining widly coming in, he would slowly and surely make lennox make a mistake and he would attack lennoxs body hard. Liston suttley wait for lennox to drop that left low like he always does after a jab, and liston would come right over the top with that right hand to stun lennox then finish him off with a barrage of lethal hooks. I dont see liston getting caught in the trenches with lennox very often and liston is too strong to be manhandled in the clinches. good styles for sonny.
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Old 12-05-2007, 08:53 PM   #2
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Default Re: Sonny Liston vs Lennox Lewis

It's be an interesting fight. They were both smart boxers with amazing power. I think Liston was the overall better puncher and had a better chin, but Lewis has height and weight advantages. Tough one to call, but I'd go with Liston.
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Old 12-05-2007, 09:01 PM   #3
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Default Re: Sonny Liston vs Lennox Lewis

Very tough call...Great match-up.
Liston could really box when he wanted....Lewis has been kayoed by lesser opponents before. Lewis would have to be very respectful of Liston...
I think he would be....after surviving some shakey moments. Lewis' height pays off in a jabbing contest.
I'll take Lewis by decision
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Old 12-05-2007, 11:02 PM   #4
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Default Re: Sonny Liston vs Lennox Lewis

Quote:
Originally Posted by SuzieQ49
I like Liston by early Kayo. Sonny Liston reminds me of randy moss, a freak of nature for his size. incredible talent to go along with his freakish physical tools(15" fist, 84" reach).

I think Liston was the better boxer than lennox and i can see him controlling lennox with the jab like bruno did, and unlike foreman liston didnt bull rush in. liston was methodical, smart he stayed back boxed utilized his long jab...liston wouldnt be caught red handed swining widly coming in, he would slowly and surely make lennox make a mistake and he would attack lennoxs body hard. Liston suttley wait for lennox to drop that left low like he always does after a jab, and liston would come right over the top with that right hand to stun lennox then finish him off with a barrage of lethal hooks. I dont see liston getting caught in the trenches with lennox very often and liston is too strong to be manhandled in the clinches. good styles for sonny.
I've never thought of it this way, but after reading your post, I think you may be on to something here. Liston WAS methodical. He had what some experts call the greatest heavyweight jab of all time, and more power behind it than most can generate with a mere jab. He would also stalk his prey patiently and carefully as you already pointed out. I'm not sure if this fight would exactly as you described that it would, but its a fair ****ysis nonetheless.
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Old 12-06-2007, 04:57 AM   #5
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Default Re: Sonny Liston vs Lennox Lewis

(a) Lewis by UD.

(b) Liston by early KO.



(a) is more likely than (b).
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Old 12-06-2007, 05:18 AM   #6
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Default Re: Sonny Liston vs Lennox Lewis

Lewis, by close and hard fought decision.
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Old 12-06-2007, 05:52 AM   #7
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Default Re: Sonny Liston vs Lennox Lewis

If this fight was Saturday instead of Hatton-Mayweather, anyone being bullish about their pick would be talking rash, so any confident and definite surmise is only in the light of the fact that the fight would never happen. As has been pointed out in another post, either man could win, but it is probably more likely that Liston would win. The Lewis chin and it's perception has become ridiculous now but it could be the governing factor here in fact. A one punch KO is not likely, but it is very probable that Lewis will find himself seriously hurt in the course of the fight and that he will not survive that against a puncher like Liston.

Of course, if Liston dominates the battle of the jabs like SuzieQ suggests, which is possible on a bad night for Lewis, but not likely, Liston will win rather easily.
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Old 12-06-2007, 07:29 AM   #8
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Default Re: Sonny Liston vs Lennox Lewis

Interesting that no on mention yet is made of Liston's heart. It seems Liston gets a free pass for quitting blatantly against a light hitting opponent right after his career best win.
Just compare that to Mike Tyson. Tyson fought his heart out against Douglas, but showed signs of quitting mentally against Holyfield (first time), yet still took his beating like a man. The same thing seemed to happen when he fought Lennox Lewis. It was only after that that he really lost interest in winning (but no one holds that one punch cold KO against Liston at high age against him, right?) that he started quitting.

Yes, Liston fought and finished with a broken jaw against Marshall.
Who, in case you forgot, was a journeyman that was barely over the lightheavyweight limit but he beat that big bear. Tyson also showed great heart against Bruno (I), Douglas and Botha. That doesn't stop him from getting a ****load of criticism, "Tyson couldn't handle pressure", etc when these sort of discussions come up.

Why does Liston get a free pass on this department? Because he has 15" fists? Fact is that Lewis has never been intimidated and Liston would be no different. Liston was intimated like hell by Ali and folded like a cheap suit once, perhaps twice. Liston is the one without self-confidence here. He has been controlled his entire life. Just hear him speak, he has that shy-stutter despite that he can beat the **** out of 99% of the people. You cannot ignore these factors. Lewis has proven his heart beyond any doubt in the Mercer, Bruno and Klitschko fights. Liston's is a question mark.




I'll take Lewis by knockout or decision. He has a much bigger actual reach (forget that wingspan bull****, 6'3 80" Williams clearly had a much bigger reach than Liston) and more importantly, much faster hands. After the fight, people would comment on how remarkably small Liston looked when he got in the ring with a big heavyweight for a change. The mythical picture of a 6'8 250lbs bear was in fact 6'0 200-212lbs.


I don't like Liston's punching compared to Lewis. Lewis' was much more smooth. Watch for instance Liston finishing Williams in their second fight. It seems he pushes those right hands out, slowly telegraphed and one by one. Compare that to a finish like Lewis-Botha and you'll see the difference.

Liston has a grand total of 2 fights against punchers. Williams' career only KO is Terrel and a long string of Texas bums. Satterfield KO'd him also. Lewis faced a ton of punchers, Ruddock, Tua, Klitschko, Tyson (still good for a few rounds), Bruno, Morrison, Grant, Mercer, Briggs, Golota, Tucker, Mason, Rahman, McCall.
Lewis is the more proven man here.

Marciano gets a lot of criticism for beating small heavyweights, but how often did Liston face a 210+lbs heavyweight? One is Williams who was unranked. The other is Ali who beat the **** out of him twice.


To summarize:
Power: Even

Boxing ability: I never saw Liston hook off the jab like Lewis did. I never saw Liston fight off the backfoot for the full fight like Lewis did. I never saw Liston put together a 4-punch combination like Lewis did against Holyfield, Mercer, etc. Edge: Lewis.

Handspeed: Lewis, easily. Despite being 35lbs and 5 inches bigger naturally. Just watch the film and see for yourself.

Chin: I think this one is close. Liston didn't get KO'd the way Lewis got, but Liston only faced one good puncher twice. If you pick two random punchers off Lewis' resume, chances are that Lewis comes out the same way Liston does. Lewis is a lot more proven in that he took many punches from a lot of different kind of big punchers with no trouble, and it's been noted before that Lewis was ready to continue against McCall. I don't really trust that referee knowing that Don King had bet $450.000 for McCall to win. Liston got knocked out cold when he was nearly 40, Lewis when he was 35. Notice though, that Martin was the first noteworthy puncher that Liston faced since he was 32 while Lewis fought McCall, Akinwande, Golota, Briggs, Grant, Tua, Rahman 2x, Tyson and Klitschko as punchers when he was older than 32. But okay, for now i will give Liston the edge.

Footwork: Lewis. Lewis moves around the ring better, faster and can figth off the backfoot, something Liston never showed. Lewis is more versatile, faster and doesn't always chase you in a straight line like Liston did.

More proven against big heavyweights: Lewis.

More proven against big punchers: Lewis.

Stamina: Liston went 12 only once against Machen, but to be fair, he showed no problem there. Lewis went 12 several times. Against Tua he kept moving all the time. Lewis could have very high punch outputs despite his size. He averaged 55 punches a round against Holyfield (landed 57%). Edge: Lewis.

Size: Lewis has 35 lbs in natural weight, 5 inches in height and despite their wingspans both being 84", i can guarantee you that Lewis has the longer reach. He is 5 inches taller and his hands look much longer, compared to Liston's hands who were less long than Williams'. Edge: Lewis.

Experience: Lewis beat much more top ranked contenders than Liston. Liston has something like 7, Lewis something like 20. That's about three times more.

Ring Generalship: Lewis. He could dictate the fight. He made Tua fight the way he wanted to. He easily outboxed Holyfield in the first with the jab and swift combinations, in the second he went more toe to toe for the judges and still won an 8-4 or 7-5 decision. He completely neutralised Tyson with the jab, the uppercut and holding. Lewis has adaptability. The only time he made a mistake was against Mercer when he was yet to face someone he couldn't knockout and chased the KO too much. But he learnt from that. Liston did well against Machen but couldn't hurt him (Johanson knocked him out in 1) and had 3 points deducted for low blows out of frustration. He was clueless against Ali. Now i don't blame him THAT much for it, since he was undertrained and in a bad stylistic matchup, but it was a bad stylistic matchup for a reason: Liston had no idea how to cut off the ring and was slow. Lewis has neither those problems (not saying he'd beat Ali, though).

Heart: No explanation needed here i suppose. Edge: Lewis.


I think Lewis would using footwork, timing, speed and reach to beat Liston's jab, and come over the top with a right hand now and then, which is easy when you're inches taller. Of course it could also go the other way. But i'll take my chances with Lewis in this one.
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Old 12-06-2007, 07:39 AM   #9
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Default Re: Sonny Liston vs Lennox Lewis

Quote:
Originally Posted by ChrisPontius
Interesting that no on mention yet is made of Liston's heart. It seems Liston gets a free pass for quitting blatantly against a light hitting opponent right after his career best win.
Never happened.

You mention Marshall. Liston also showed his great heart outside the ring, and plenty. When you hold Liston up for examination as regards heart you are left with the Ali fights - both suspect at the very least.


Quote:
Why does Liston get a free pass on this department? Because he has 15" fists?
More because, apart from against Ali, there is just no sign,anywhere, in that Liston has quit. Once you've accepted the rightous truth into your heart as regards these fights, it all becomes clear to you.

Quote:
Fact is that Lewis has never been intimidated and Liston would be no different
Agreed

Quote:
I'll take Lewis by knockout or decision. He has a much bigger actual reach (forget that wingspan bull****, 6'3 80" Williams clearly had a much bigger reach than Liston) and more importantly, much faster hands. After the fight, people would comment on how remarkably small Liston looked when he got in the ring with a big heavyweight for a change. The mythical picture of a 6'8 250lbs bear was in fact 6'0 200-212lbs.
I think your pick is not unreasonable as I have said. But I do beleive that Lewis has to dominate to win. Your "mythical picture" of Liston and its innacuracies is fair - a simialir thing happens to Foreman sometimes - the difference is that Liston is twice the composite puncher that Foreman was, more accurate, better on the inside, better in between, and all of it backed up by the one of the three best (my pick for THE best) jab in the HW division. Meanwhile you have the Lewis chin. Meahwhile you have Liston live every minute he is in there, unless you chose to concentate so firmly upon the past prime heavily controlled long odds loser that fought Ali.


I
Quote:
don't like Liston's punching compared to Lewis. Lewis' was much more smooth.
At his very best, I agree. The thing is, Lewis was far more patchy. He was perfectly capable of having a **** round in the right circumstances, he was perfectly capable of range finding and pawing a bit with the jab - although when on song as against Tua or in Rahman II he is lethal with it. IF Lewis can dominate but has a bad round 7 he can still lose. If Liston dominates, Liston will win.


Quote:
Liston has a grand total of 2 fights against punchers. Lewis is the more proven man here.
Granted. But Liston will be the best puncher Lewis has ever faced. Similairly, Lewis will be the best puncher Liston has ever faced. This is often the case when ATG fighters bump heads but HERE it is relevant, because, i'm sorry to say, it doesn't take an ATG puncher to dump Lewis on his ass.

Quote:
I think Lewis would using footwork, timing, speed and reach to beat Liston's jab, and come over the top with a right hand now and then, which is easy when you're inches taller. Of course it could also go the other way. But i'll take my chances with Lewis in this one.
A perfectly valid pick. But you wouldn't be laying any money here, would you Chris?
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Old 12-06-2007, 08:51 AM   #10
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Default Re: Sonny Liston vs Lennox Lewis

Liston didn't think Ali was a light hitter. He said he was surprised by his power. Liston would catch Lewis a lot easier than Ali and whether Lewis can take them without falling is another matter. 50/50 fight for me. Lewis best wins are against past prime fighters - Holyfield (he was peak against Tyson), Tyson (he was peak 15 years prior). He won't be remembered as a top 5 heavy in all-time ranks.
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Old 12-06-2007, 08:53 AM   #11
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Default Re: Sonny Liston vs Lennox Lewis

I think Liston takes it you saw how Lewis reacted when Bruno was outjabbing him I see the same thing with Liston only Sonny don't freeze like Frank. Liston KO 7.
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Old 12-06-2007, 08:59 AM   #12
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Default Re: Sonny Liston vs Lennox Lewis

Quote:
Originally Posted by Minotauro
I think Liston takes it you saw how Lewis reacted when Bruno was outjabbing him I see the same thing with Liston only Sonny don't freeze like Frank. Liston KO 7.
Well Lewis wasn't the finished article at that time, and remember that Bruno tended to freeze instead of falling down, which is what most guys do when Lewis bombs them.

I agree with your pick though, but I think how Liston deals with Lewis' best would be very interesting.
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Old 12-06-2007, 09:48 AM   #13
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Default Re: Sonny Liston vs Lennox Lewis

Quote:
Originally Posted by McGrain
Well Lewis wasn't the finished article at that time, and remember that Bruno tended to freeze instead of falling down, which is what most guys do when Lewis bombs them.

And Lewis wasn't the finished article around 96-97 either, as some think. Lewis' peak was around 99-01. If you were to ask Lewis and Steward themselves they would say the same. Holyfield, Grant, Botha, Tua, Rahman I and II, maybe even Tyson.

Lewis was more athletic and slim when he fought Ruddock and Bruno, but nowhere near as seasoned or complete. Agreed.

Lewis peaked late.
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Old 12-06-2007, 10:43 AM   #14
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Default Re: Sonny Liston vs Lennox Lewis

Quote:
Originally Posted by McGrain
You mention Marshall. Liston also showed his great heart outside the ring, and plenty. When you hold Liston up for examination as regards heart you are left with the Ali fights - both suspect at the very least.


More because, apart from against Ali, there is just no sign,anywhere, in that Liston has quit. Once you've accepted the rightous truth into your heart as regards these fights, it all becomes clear to you.
I don't want to restart that discussion, but i will say that not many people think both of the Liston-Ali fights were fixed.





Quote:
Originally Posted by McGrain
Granted. But Liston will be the best puncher Lewis has ever faced. Similairly, Lewis will be the best puncher Liston has ever faced. This is often the case when ATG fighters bump heads but HERE it is relevant, because, i'm sorry to say, it doesn't take an ATG puncher to dump Lewis on his ass.
Yes, but it is no guarantee at all.

I mean let's face it: were McCall and Rahman the best punchers (or fighters) that Lewis fought?

By far they weren't. Klitschko, Ruddock, Tua, Morrison are more dangerous punchers and Bruno, Mason, Briggs, Mercer, Tucker and Tyson were at least as dangerous. But none of them managed to knock Lewis down and only Briggs and Klitschko had hem wobbling at one point. If the best puncher Lewis faced was Briggs 2x and no one else of note except for an undersized heavyweight with no chin, then there would be no talk whatsoever about his chin as is the case with Liston.



Quote:
Originally Posted by McGrain
A perfectly valid pick. But you wouldn't be laying any money here, would you Chris?
Indeed i wouldn't; between two all time greats in their primes, anything can happen.

However, i would be willing to bet something like a grand total of 10 bugs with you on this on for the rivalry and the fun. If a time machine ever gets invented, we have a deal.


By the way, i don't know if you interpreted it that way, but i don't think Liston is an unreasonable pick at all. Just that i think there are some overlooked points which i adressed and for those reasons, i favor Lennox.
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Old 12-06-2007, 11:02 AM   #15
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Default Re: Sonny Liston vs Lennox Lewis

Quote:
Originally Posted by ChrisPontius
I don't want to restart that discussion, but i will say that not many people think both of the Liston-Ali fights were fixed.
I agree, we've done that, one or two things specific to this point though - first, the Liston-Ali fight is one of the only fights where there was serious suspicion at the time which has hugely diminished over time. This is because Ali's star rose so much higher than where it rode for this fight. From weird dancer to invincible, in fact. As Ali comes to seem more and more invincible, that result seemed more and more concievable. But one, obviously, does not follow behind the other. It is perfectly plausible for that fight to have been fixed AND for Ali to have been good enough to win it. But I actually think that fight was the turning point for Ali. After it, he was different than before. The guy from the Cooper fight got in and the capable of Manilla got out.

Second - it IS interesting that hardcore boxing fans give Liston something of a pass in the heart department, isn't it?







Quote:
Yes, but it is no guarantee at all.

I mean let's face it: were McCall and Rahman the best punchers (or fighters) that Lewis fought?
No; and what's more, I think it's possible (indeed, the stats prove it!) that Lewis is actually more likely that Lewis will lose to a good fighter than a really, really good fighter, and maybe even a great one...


Quote:
Indeed i wouldn't; between two all time greats in their primes, anything can happen.

However, i would be willing to bet something like a grand total of 10 bugs with you on this on for the rivalry and the fun. If a time machine ever gets invented, we have a deal.
I know this is hard to swallow, but it will be YEARS before they get to us if they ever manage to invent one. Assuming they decide to lose it they will want to think about JFK, Ghandi and even Jesus before they get anywhere near pairing Ali-Louis (then we still have to have the argument about which versions of the men to match and deal with the fault out from what will essentially be two kidnapps). What a ****er.
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