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Old 03-14-2012, 06:09 AM   #16
lufcrazy
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Default Re: A CBZ Writers Thoughts On The Greatest Heavies

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Originally Posted by El Bujia View Post
Bivins?
Bivins was a tremendous hw during the war years.

I have a lot of love for his heavyweight credentials.
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Old 03-14-2012, 06:20 AM   #17
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Default Re: A CBZ Writers Thoughts On The Greatest Heavies

"Preliminarily, I should explain my own peculiar criteria for determining "greatness". Simply put, I rate fighters on a "who would have beaten whom" basis. In other words, I ask how each fighter, on his best night, would have performed against each other fighter, on that fighter's best night, ignoring considerations of "historical significance", "social impact", "longevity", "quality of opposition", etc., except to the extent those considerations bear on my analysis of fighting ability. The more hypothetical victories a fighter compiles in the round-robin tournament of my imagination, the higher I rank him."

I haven't yet read the article since I stumbled across this bit and immediately had a problem.

Frankly, H2H is the biggest pile of pish when ranking fighters...it's a purely subjective viewpoint, and most likely, an incorrect one.

I mean, if people were that good that predicting the outcome of fights in a contemporary sense, then they'd be millionaires from betting. Any millionaires from betting on boxing here???

Now, try doing it across different generations, different rulesets, different equipment etc. in some sort of rubbish fantasy fight! Haha...whatever.

It's infantile and bloody silly if you ask me. (Fun for debate on a forum, but not something to take deadly seriously.)

Last edited by fists of fury; 03-14-2012 at 07:18 AM.
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Old 03-14-2012, 07:17 AM   #18
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"Dempsey-Ali would have been pretty close to pick 'em, too. Styles make fights, at least when the combatants are in the same "class", to borrow a term from horse racing, and Dempsey had the style to give Ali trouble. Dempsey would have fought Ali the same way Frazier did, hustling forward, keeping the pressure on, throwing a lot of left hooks, which Ali didn’t like. Ali did not really have the punch to keep Dempsey honest, and so would have had difficulty the whole fight. Also, I keep thinking of the trouble Ali had with Henry Cooper. Dempsey was the same size as Cooper and had the same left hook. But, Dempsey had a right hand to go along with it, was much more durable, and, above all, didn’t cut. At the same time, though, I can see Ali’s lightning hands and iron chin earning him a close decision. In any 10 fights, I guess I'd go with Ali winning 5 or 6, so I make him the slightest of favorites."

Here is a prime example of what I mean.

What are the rules for this fight? Which rules do you implement, a ruleset from Dempsey's era or Ali's? What scoring system is used? How many rounds is the fight scheduled for?
What equipment are they using? From Ali's era or Dempsey's?
Who refs the bout? Does he let fighters work inside or does he break them up quickly?
Where are they fighting? In an arena, or outdoors in the sun?

There are SO many critical variables that haven't even been touched on by the writer, let alone explored in depth.
It seems to be, at best if we're honest, a half-baked mish-mash collection of opinions set to reach a conclusion that suits the author's personal preference. That's it.

We do it on the forum too, but most of us don't have all day to sit here and form an in-depth analysis of a fight.
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Old 03-14-2012, 11:39 AM   #19
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Default Re: A CBZ Writers Thoughts On The Greatest Heavies

The author makes good points about how the contemporary writers, trainers, etc are better judges of the fighters because they saw them in action, whereas we have written accounts and poor quality films... I really enjoyed the beginning of the article that went into deep focus on this subject. However, the further he writes, the more he loses me...

I think he places too much weight on everyone else, and has a faulty lack of self-confidence when it comes to making his own judgements, and when he finally does, he makes some stretches to fit his point.

The first thing that gave me pause was: "First, Fitzsimmons was considerably more cagey and defensively adept than Frazier". Cagey? Possibly. Frazier wasn't known for being cagey. More "defensively adept" is insulting. Look no further than the films we have of Fitz to see how adept Fitz was with defense...

Next, the Johnson part was downright biased against Johnson. He praises Johnson for his skill and grudgingly concedes that Johnson had respectable power, but gives a lot of attention to Johnson's lack of chin and durability... This is in contrast to Louis, who he spends quite a bit of time on, making a case for his chin. At the same time, he makes zero mention of Dempsey's chin, while both were knocked down 5 times more than Johnson! It's pretty clear that he has some bias against Johnson here.

Next, the Holmes portion was a stretch, and that's putting it nicely. To summarize, Holmes was a light puncher, while in contrast, he made the claim earlier that Ali was an underrated puncher (which he was; I just think Holmes should be afforded the same distinction), and that:
"Thus, he had trouble with aggressive fighters who put the pressure on him, like Ken Norton, Mike Weaver, and Earnie Shavers. Fortunately for Holmes, those guys all had glass jaws and (except for Norton) no stamina, and so ultimately wilted beneath Holmes’s steady barrage. But could he count on that against a Dempsey or a Louis? No way, particularly considering his career-long tendency to get hit by right hands over his left jab (Kevin Isaac, Renaldo Snipes, Duane Bobick (in the Olympic Trials), Shavers, Tyson)."

Here we see a double standard when it comes to fitting his point. All those guys had a "glass jaw". To put an exclamation point on his logic, he cites Holmes' being a sucker for a right with an amateur fight, a fight when Holmes was 7 fights in, and a fight when Holmes is completely washed up... So 3 of his 5 examples are a real stretch, to say the least.

Any writer is entitled to his opinions and to bias, but it seems he spends the most time on the fighters he likes, and highlights their good qualities while briefly addressing some of the more popular knocks against them. He doesn't afford everyone else the same treatment.

That's understandable, because he has an article to write, a point to make, and a position to establish. Overall, it was a good read.


Thanks, McVey

Last edited by DaveK; 03-14-2012 at 12:08 PM.
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Old 03-14-2012, 12:41 PM   #20
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Default Re: A CBZ Writers Thoughts On The Greatest Heavies

The fairy tales of youth can be hard to put aside but at some time everyone must learn to put away childish things.
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Old 03-14-2012, 01:13 PM   #21
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Interesting article ... some good points, others a bit of romanticizing .. thanks for posting !
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Old 03-14-2012, 01:27 PM   #22
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[quote=Boxed Ears;12320065] We're talking 81 heavyweight fights containing numerous HOFers, here.
This guy fought many, many name fighters and several of them cracked like hell. That's not arguable, I don't think.

How many of them were top 10? Like I pointed out, the bums to top contenders ratio in GF's career is perhaps the widest gap in heavyweight history. 81 is an impressive number...until one looks a little closer.

And how many of those top fighters really tested his chin(again, PRIME Foreman)? Please don't tell me Frazier and Norton. That's laughable. Neither one mounted an offense that was worth a whiff.





I seriously, seriously doubt aging and fattening made George Foreman's chin better. I'm not sure why anyone even thinks that.

The bigger the tree, the harder it is to chop down.




Hey, man, if you want to take a common term for world class punch resistance and apply it to those that most of us would consider the absolute most extreme examples of it and only apply the common term to those extremely uncommon and rare examples to disagree with a description in an article, that's fine. I see it like if you said someone was a big puncher and I said "Nope. Because they don't hit like Foreman, Liston or Shavers." That wouldn't be logical, to me. Because they don't need to hit as harder as the top three punchers I would think of. Just like if someone says Foreman has an iron jaw, I wouldn't disagree because he doesn't meet the absolute top few names I can think of. I just find it a weird thing to take exception to, is all.

Saying someone has an "iron jaw" because he can take a punch is not "common" except in the lexicon of people who don't know any better. Maybe that sounds a bit snobby, but the more knowledgeable boxing people don't easily hand out those types of labels. When discussing the greats of boxing history "iron jaws" are neither rare or extremely uncommon. I could give you a very long list of what most boxing historians would consider to be iron-jawed fighters, a list which GF would stand out like a purple flamingo if you tried to include him on it.

Stick around and you'll find people here taking exception to a lot more "weird" things than this


Foreman stood strong. What about Moorer and Morrison? And Briggs, and Holyfield and Cooney who bombed him without putting him down? Holy is no huge puncher but I think he cracked Tyson's chin with less flush shots, with his terrific accuracy and decent power. Is this the shock absorption theory? Does that theory apply to the unbreakable Butterbean as well? Fat=punch resistance? Or perhaps more muscle does it? But, no, that doesn't seem to have helped Briggs, or Morrison, or Moorer. Is it George's special combination of fat and muscle that he gained? Butterbean theory is what I'm calling it. Foreman didn't grow a chin, in my opinion.

Like I said earlier, I really don't know. But to say that he didn't seem to take a punch better in his second career than in his first is to ignore the evidence that is right there in the films.

I do think the drying out ritual had much to do with being knocked down by Young and stopped but perfectly coherent against Ali, however, after tiring.

He didn't look all that coherent to me. Ali hit him with a nasty blizzard of punches and GF tumbled to the canvas. In your opinion was drying out the reason Lyle was bouncing him off the canvas as well?

And I think he did cover his chin better, in later years.

On this we can agree
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Old 03-14-2012, 01:34 PM   #23
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Default Re: A CBZ Writers Thoughts On The Greatest Heavies

"Does that theory apply to the unbreakable Butterbean as well? Fat=punch resistance? "

Is it possible that fat heavyweights, even ones with less than strong chins like BB, would have been even more fragile if they had less tonnage? Hard to say. Maybe if Willie Meehan had a little less then Jack Dempsey would have stopped him in one round. Maybe Marciano would have taken out Don ****ell within five.

Size may indeed be a factor in determining punch resistance my friend It's not something to be so smugly dismissed.

Last edited by Surf-Bat; 03-14-2012 at 04:33 PM.
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Old 03-14-2012, 01:41 PM   #24
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Default Re: A CBZ Writers Thoughts On The Greatest Heavies

Just had a quick look at the writers list and it's seriously shit, didn't read what he wrote because his list was so wankstained
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Old 03-14-2012, 09:17 PM   #25
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Default Re: A CBZ Writers Thoughts On The Greatest Heavies

Thanks for printing this article, McVey. I can't say I found that much insight in it. I agree with DaveK

The author presented the case for the prosecution for some (Louis, Johnson, Holmes, Marciano)

and a laughably biased case for the defense for others (Dempsey)

There were a few really strange opinions

1--Louis' opponents were, on the whole, over the hill?

2--Johnson had a weak jaw--I wonder how he went 25 years, from 1901 to 1026 while only being stopped once, and that in the 26th round by the 230 lb Willard when he was 37. So Johnson went about twice as long as Dempsey's (and in fairness lots of others, such as Marciano and Jeffries) entire careers while only being stopped in a finish fight. I would have all sorts of questions. How many at 37 would have done better than Johnson in 1915? Would the "iron-jawed" Dempsey have been able to last in finish fights with Tunney?

3--Firpo was better than the 1930's champions, including Schmeling.

4--Foreman "terrorized" the heavyweights of the nineties.

5--Wills was nothing much, but Fred Fulton was awesome.
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Old 03-14-2012, 09:47 PM   #26
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Default Re: A CBZ Writers Thoughts On The Greatest Heavies

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Originally Posted by edward morbius View Post
Thanks for printing this article, McVey. I can't say I found that much insight in it. I agree with DaveK

The author presented the case for the prosecution for some (Louis, Johnson, Holmes, Marciano)

and a laughably biased case for the defense for others (Dempsey)

There were a few really strange opinions

1--Louis' opponents were, on the whole, over the hill?

2--Johnson had a weak jaw--I wonder how he went 25 years, from 1901 to 1026 while only being stopped once, and that in the 26th round by the 230 lb Willard when he was 37. So Johnson went about twice as long as Dempsey's (and in fairness lots of others, such as Marciano and Jeffries) entire careers while only being stopped in a finish fight. I would have all sorts of questions. How many at 37 would have done better than Johnson in 1915? Would the "iron-jawed" Dempsey have been able to last in finish fights with Tunney?

3--Firpo was better than the 1930's champions, including Schmeling.

4--Foreman "terrorized" the heavyweights of the nineties.

5--Wills was nothing much, but Fred Fulton was awesome.
I would disagree with everyone of those statements.
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Old 03-15-2012, 03:31 AM   #27
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Default Re: A CBZ Writers Thoughts On The Greatest Heavies

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Originally Posted by Surf-Bat View Post
Is it possible that fat heavyweights, even ones with less than strong chins like BB, would have been even more fragile if they had less tonnage? Hard to say. Maybe if Willie Meehan had a little less then Jack Dempsey would have stopped him in one round. Maybe Marciano would have taken out Don ****ell within five.


Size may indeed be a factor in determining punch resistance my friend It's not something to be so smugly dismissed.
Bah humbug. I stand by my position. And .2 times more smugly than before, out of spite.

Edit: No, .7 times more smugly. So there. End edit.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Surf-Bat View Post

How many of them were top 10? Like I pointed out, the bums to top contenders ratio in GF's career is perhaps the widest gap in heavyweight history. 81 is an impressive number...until one looks a little closer.

And how many of those top fighters really tested his chin(again, PRIME Foreman)? Please don't tell me Frazier and Norton. That's laughable. Neither one mounted an offense that was worth a whiff.
My point was A. volume of fights with big men is a measure and B. Who could hit that landed and he had A. the volume and B. was landed on. Rankings be damned. If I was judging Holmes' chin, for instance, what Shavers did to him or Weaver, rankings would have zero to do with who's punching who in the face in a chin discussion. They could have been ranked anywhere. Then again, you're still bringing up this supposedly different Foreman, when I'm counting them all as one Foreman who didn't magically grow a chin by putting on weight. We're really not going to be on the same page, here.


Quote:
The bigger the tree, the harder it is to chop down.



Saying someone has an "iron jaw" because he can take a punch is not "common" except in the lexicon of people who don't know any better. Maybe that sounds a bit snobby, but the more knowledgeable boxing people don't easily hand out those types of labels. When discussing the greats of boxing history "iron jaws" are neither rare or extremely uncommon. I could give you a very long list of what most boxing historians would consider to be iron-jawed fighters, a list which GF would stand out like a purple flamingo if you tried to include him on it.

Stick around and you'll find people here taking exception to a lot more "weird" things than this
Ah, but that's not actually what I said. Is it? I don't mean to be snobby either, but you might have read that idea where it wasn't written, mate. He can do a lot more than just take a punch. I think I was pretty clear in my position. Among the heavyweight greats, which is the subject, I don't believe there are but a few who have a better jaw than Foreman. I think his was elite and I stand by that.


Quote:
Like I said earlier, I really don't know. But to say that he didn't seem to take a punch better in his second career than in his first is to ignore the evidence that is right there in the films.
I don't think so, really. Not when you account for who was punching, when he was getting rattled (Lyle seems to be the much heavier puncher at heavy than say Holy or M&M, for instance, not to mention Foreman was hiding his chin better with them, and Ali and Young had him one in the stage of pure exhaustion in terrible heat and the other close to hallucination-inducing near-death experience dehydration). So, on film you can see certain things but then there's the context of what you're seeing.



Quote:
He didn't look all that coherent to me. Ali hit him with a nasty blizzard of punches and GF tumbled to the canvas. In your opinion was drying out the reason Lyle was bouncing him off the canvas as well?
In my opinion Lyle was a big puncher and Foreman was in a slugfest with him and that's enough. In my opinion George was perfectly coherent when he hit the deck and stood up and walked normally to his corner before the ten count, though he was completely and utterly exhausted and had been taking serious pin-point blows from Ali all night and what put him down was Ali giving all his muscle, which he often didn't, and catching him right. No shame in that. Bonavena had an iron jaw (in a commonly accepted way, of course) and he got caught right by Muhammad and there you go.


Quote:
On this we can agree
Finally...Fokin' Liston fans, I swear.

I was in a rarely argumentative mood, earlier. Now, I'm starting to resent the precedent of breaking down the quote and replying to everything. Too much like work, that. But, interesting view points.
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Old 03-15-2012, 04:33 PM   #28
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Originally Posted by PowerPuncher View Post
Just had a quick look at the writers list and it's seriously shit, didn't read what he wrote because his list was so wankstained
then you should not react here.. anyway i enjoyed the article very much. thnx for posting it. i don't agree totally with everything he wrote. but its a decent list.
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Old 03-15-2012, 04:53 PM   #29
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Default Re: A CBZ Writers Thoughts On The Greatest Heavies

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Originally Posted by lufcrazy View Post
I think the issue here is that rankings in comparison with the old days are being overcomplicated.

It is not under rating Dempsey to leave him out of the top 10.

Guys back then might have had him top 3, but since the 50's there's been plenty of guys who've established themselves as legitimate greats.

Lets say They had it going Louis, Johnson, Dempsey, Jeffries. It is very easy to fill that list with guys like Ali, Tyson, Frazier, Foreman, Lewis, Liston, Marciano, Charles, Walcott, Bivins, Patterson etc.

The order of the pre 50's guys stays the same, it is just that the list is more populated now.
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Old 03-17-2012, 02:00 PM   #30
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Quote:
Eric Jorgensen
'History's Greatest Heavyweights'

For instance, those boxing experts who saw both Jeffries and Johnson fight in their primes were pretty evenly divided as to who was the better man (and, regardless of which way they came down on that question, almost universally believed that a fight between them would have been close). That tells me that those two guys better be clustered pretty close together in anyone's ratings. For a "year 2000" analyst to do otherwise, he has to say that he was able to glean more from viewing a few film clips and from his own re-interpretation of old newspaper accounts than the eyewitnesses gleaned from actually watching the fights, the training sessions, etc. One has to have an extremely high opinion of his own innate genius to take that position with a straight face, it seems to me. Either that, or he has to come up with some "clever" (that is to say, "contrived") rationalization for disregarding the historical consensus that at least ostensibly stops short of saying "y'know, I'm just a whole lot smarter than all those other guys were".

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