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Old 01-11-2008, 01:07 PM   #31
sthomas
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Default Re: Joe Louis Never Proved That He Deserves The Number One Slot ATG Heavyweights

Ali #1 ATG. Louis was great but got KO'd by Schmeling & Marciano, and that weighs a lot in my decsion, especially the loss to Schmeling. Ali had greater comp.
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Old 01-11-2008, 01:21 PM   #32
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Default Re: Joe Louis Never Proved That He Deserves The Number One Slot ATG Heavyweights

lucky for the 70s guys that they never faced a pre-exile Ali. I think 1966/7 Ali woulda done alot better against the 70s fighters. And that is a pretty scary thought. Ali was unbeaten at his peak. No other champ demolished great fighters in Frazier and Norton like what Foreman did. Liston demolished Patterson. Patterson demolished Archie Moore who is rated a great win for Marciano. I think Liston, Frazier and Foreman are true Heavyweight destroyers and far more dangerous opponents than what Louis and Marciano faced. After what Ali went through with the exile and still coming back to defeat a new generation who are regarded as the best in history then he deserves the number 1 position.
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Old 01-11-2008, 01:27 PM   #33
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Default Re: Joe Louis Never Proved That He Deserves The Number One Slot ATG Heavyweights

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Originally Posted by sthomas
Louis was great but got KO'd by Schmeling & Marciano, and that weighs a lot in my decsion, especially the loss to Schmeling.
I fail to see how either loss is particularly relevant.

At the time of the Schmeling loss Louis was a 21 year old kid who had turned pro within the last two years. Still a huge win for Schmeling but not exactly a prime Louis.

To judge him on the Marciano loss would be like judging Ali on the loss to Leon Spinks.

Yes Ali fought better competition but in Louis's record you have this 15 year window where nobody could beat him.
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Old 01-11-2008, 01:48 PM   #34
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Default Re: Joe Louis Never Proved That He Deserves The Number One Slot ATG Heavyweights

I like this thread because it's the only time in recent memory that I have no major gripes about any of what Janitor, Chris Pontius, Sonny's Jab, Holmes' Jab, Mendoza, TBooze or Magoo posted. Way to gang up guys!

Joe Louis is a shoe-in for the top 2 spots at heavyweight. There's very little separation between him and Ali. Anybody who starts their list with 'Louis' is off to a solid start.
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Old 01-12-2008, 01:18 AM   #35
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Default Re: Joe Louis Never Proved That He Deserves The Number One Slot ATG Heavyweights

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Originally Posted by Sonny's jab
Norton was tentative against Foreman. His own trainer reckoned he froze in front of punchers, and he wasn't a fluid counter-puncher or backpedalling man, that wasn't his style at all. Norton didn't commit to solid punches unless he was coming forward. You cannot compare him to Walcott.

Ali didn't really try outboxing Foreman, he came straight at him and speared him with a fast lead right, wobbled him in the opening round and then played tough man against the ropes for the rest of the fight.

Ron Lyle was doing okay when he boxed with Foreman. But he got dragged into a street brawl. Again, he showed Foreman was a SUCKER FOR RIGHT HAND COUNTERS AND RIGHT HAND LEADS.

Walcott's speciality was catching guys with right hand counters and right hand leads, punches that he could throw while backing up or dancing. He was a master of that punch.

Jimmy Young outboxed Foreman, and knocked him down.
Walcott would probably have outboxed him for a while and knocked him out.

Foreman avoided good boxers. And his flaws were exposed against the best boxers he fought.
First, a mea culpa for discussing Foreman in a Louis thread.

Big George's flaws I believe stem from his greatest asset, his precious power. He and his trainer were enamored of it, as George himself said: "Like magic, I hit them and they fall."

So he was pretty disdainful of much defense, thereby becoming susceptible in my opinion to, yes, right hands but also left hands and everything else in between. You're absolutely right.

To beat him you had to do it at his own game and knock him out or tire him out and take a beating yourself in the process.

I wasn't really comparing Norton to Walcott, but actually Norton employed a circling, retreating, countering strategy and hit Foreman several times with rights, succeeding only in increasing Foreman's pressure.

I love Walcott but I don't think he's the guy to beat Foreman: he would be too small to counter and avoid getting hit in return and his chin was similar in sturdiness to Norton's, thus my comparison.

It's interesting you say Foreman avoided good boxers. When? I only remember him saying he preferred to avoid Frazier and Norton, but because of their prowess as punchers.
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Old 01-12-2008, 07:17 AM   #36
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Default Re: Joe Louis Never Proved That He Deserves The Number One Slot ATG Heavyweights

Quote:
Originally Posted by prime
First, a mea culpa for discussing Foreman in a Louis thread.

Big George's flaws I believe stem from his greatest asset, his precious power. He and his trainer were enamored of it, as George himself said: "Like magic, I hit them and they fall."

So he was pretty disdainful of much defense, thereby becoming susceptible in my opinion to, yes, right hands but also left hands and everything else in between. You're absolutely right.

To beat him you had to do it at his own game and knock him out or tire him out and take a beating yourself in the process.

I wasn't really comparing Norton to Walcott, but actually Norton employed a circling, retreating, countering strategy and hit Foreman several times with rights, succeeding only in increasing Foreman's pressure.

I love Walcott but I don't think he's the guy to beat Foreman: he would be too small to counter and avoid getting hit in return and his chin was similar in sturdiness to Norton's, thus my comparison.
Well, I see Walcott beating Foreman or at least having a real chance of doing so.

Few people would agree with me but would at least concede that my comparison of the two fighters and their strengths & weaknesses has some merit. A lot of people would concede that Walcott probably beat more contenders and was a more versatile fighter himself. Therefore, under certain reasonable criteria it's not wrong to judge Walcott to be a better fighter than , or as good as, or almost as good as, George Foreman.

That's the essence of my point. It's not written in stone than Foreman was better than Walcott. In fact, until the successful return of Foreman in the 90s, coupled with an ever-growing nostalgia for the Ali-Foreman event in Zaire 1974, and the re-appraisal of a young Foreman resulting from both those phenomenon, the 70s Foreman wasn't actually held in that high regard.

In the 80s the retired ex-champ Foreman was considered by most to be a flash-in-the-pan menacing clubber who petered out quite dramatically against Ali, and really only had the win over Frazier and not much else. Not a "great" fighter, just a powerful scary force who was exposed as crude, cumbersome and unable to adapt in a long difficult fight.

Saying Walcott was better than Foreman or should rank higher on the all-time list was probably the voice of the consensus up until the late 80s/early 90s.

And that's the other aspect of the point I'm making. Foreman's greatness, IMO, is to a large degree based on his comeback, and that's fair. In fact, him winning the title back 20 years after losing it justifies him being ranked as high as the top 3, but it doesn't make him as he was in the 70s as any BETTER - all the previous criticisms still apply.

Quote:
It's interesting you say Foreman avoided good boxers. When? I only remember him saying he preferred to avoid Frazier and Norton, but because of their prowess as punchers
Prior to facing Joe Frazier, it was Foreman's management's apparent decision to build him up on second- and third-rate opposition.

After losing to Ali, Foreman's new management were less cautious and Foreman almost got beat by Ron Lyle, and got whipped by Jimmy Young.

In his autobiography, commenting on his comeback, Foreman admits that his strategy was what he calls "ballyhooing" which he roughly describes as matching himself with guys who were second-rate and lower, avoiding anything risky, to create KO victories and a media stir.
Importantly he considers the "art of ballyhooing" something that he was schooled in during his FIRST career.

Foreman doesn't make excuses for his lack of quality opposition, he openly admits cautious (mis)matchmaking accounts for much of his success in both his careers.

I'm not saying good boxers were avoided any more so than good punchers, I'm just pointing out that his wins over top drawer "slick" or "cute" boxers are minimal.
As it applies to matching him with Walcott, I'd say Walcott was a boxer-puncher, a pretty damn good one.
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Old 01-12-2008, 07:44 AM   #37
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Default Re: Joe Louis Never Proved That He Deserves The Number One Slot ATG Heavyweights

Any of you who saw Foreman lift Norton up with that right hand to the body and weren't awestruck,,welllll. Gil Clancey really goofed George up later on. He moved George's feet way too close in trying to shorten his hooks and it caused George to lose that leverage he had with the wider movement. It also caused his uppercuts to go sideways instead of text book perfect like in the Frazier fight. His jab became more of an arm punch, like in the Young fight, unlike when he had his whole body behind it as in the Norton fight.
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Old 01-12-2008, 08:17 AM   #38
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Default Re: Joe Louis Never Proved That He Deserves The Number One Slot ATG Heavyweights

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Originally Posted by timmers612
Any of you who saw Foreman lift Norton up with that right hand to the body and weren't awestruck,,welllll. Gil Clancey really goofed George up later on. He moved George's feet way too close in trying to shorten his hooks and it caused George to lose that leverage he had with the wider movement. It also caused his uppercuts to go sideways instead of text book perfect like in the Frazier fight. His jab became more of an arm punch, like in the Young fight, unlike when he had his whole body behind it as in the Norton fight.
Clancy actually blamed the others for the Ali loss, saying they had George mostly chopping wood and hitting the heavy bag. Clancy said his punches got harder and harder (sounded like an explosion on the heavy bag) but got slower and slower. Gil said they were never going to hit a moving target.

Gil may or may not be talking shyte

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Old 01-12-2008, 08:57 AM   #39
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Default Re: Joe Louis Never Proved That He Deserves The Number One Slot ATG Heavyweights

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Clancy actually blamed the others for the Ali loss, saying they had George mostly chopping wood and hitting the heavy bag. Clancy said his punches got harder and harder (sounded like an explosion on the heavy bag) but got slower and slower. Gil said they were never going to hit a moving target.

Gil may or may not be talking shyte


Clancy was probably right.
Foreman sure looked slow against Ali.

But timmers is probably right too. In a effort to improve and correct Foreman, Clancy lessened his effectiveness.

The Frazier and Norton fights were the pinnacle of Foreman's effectiveness (though I thought he showed perhaps even more promise against Chuvalo in 1970).
Still, I think a top-drawer boxer-counter-puncher who knew how to box on the retreat and smother aggression, could spell disaster for the best version of Foreman.
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Old 01-12-2008, 09:45 AM   #40
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Default Re: Joe Louis Never Proved That He Deserves The Number One Slot ATG Heavyweights

Anyone that holds the heavyweight championship for twelve years and defends the title 27 times without losing and retires undefeated has a good case to be considered the All-Time Greatest Heavyweight Champion. Looking at his record he never was beaten only by Schmeling and he avenged that defeat in short order as we all know in less than one round! And then of course we have the comeback in which he lost to Charles and Marciano; two fighters that would never have beaten him when he was in his prime. Plus the fact that Joe Louis had the guts to serve his country well during WWII makes him number 1 greatest of all-time in my book with no exceptions. So I do indeed think Joe Louis did prove something after all!!!
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Old 01-12-2008, 12:31 PM   #41
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Default Re: Joe Louis Never Proved That He Deserves The Number One Slot ATG Heavyweights

I'm not reading through all the relies to see if this has been said, but it's a fair question. I rank him a close second to Ali mainly for this reason (not fighting true upper-tier opposition of the kind Ali did). If someone wants to place Louis just ahead of Ali for other considerations such as title defenses and consistency, I have no argument. It's almost a tossup.
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Old 01-12-2008, 01:13 PM   #42
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Default Re: Joe Louis Never Proved That He Deserves The Number One Slot ATG Heavyweights

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Originally Posted by janitor
I fail to see how either loss is particularly relevant.

At the time of the Schmeling loss Louis was a 21 year old kid who had turned pro within the last two years. Still a huge win for Schmeling but not exactly a prime Louis.

To judge him on the Marciano loss would be like judging Ali on the loss to Leon Spinks.

Yes Ali fought better competition but in Louis's record you have this 15 year window where nobody could beat him.
Not sure, Louis was still beating top contenders up until the Marciano fight. Ali coulnt get pass a 7-0 fighter.
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Old 01-12-2008, 01:37 PM   #43
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Default Re: Joe Louis Never Proved That He Deserves The Number One Slot ATG Heavyweights

I think it's fair to say Joe Louis was already into his prime when Schmeling knocked him out.
It depends on how you define prime though. You could narrow it down to a single year or even a single fight.

When Schmeling knocked Joe Louis out Louis was regarded as the best heavyweight in the world, more or less proven by the way he destroyed Max Baer.
Louis's win over Max Baer still stands out as one of his most perfect victories, he looked a fairly complete fighter there, and that was a couple of fights earlier than the loss to Schmeling.

Louis probably lost to Schmeling simply because he under-estimated him, didn't train right, and didn't know what to expect from his style- Schmeling was a very good fighter. The rematch suggests Louis was the better fighter, he upped his game and Schmeling couldn't cope, it wasn't remotely competitive. Still, that doesn't discount Schmeling's win, he fought a hell of a fight and beat a prime Joe Louis, IMO, the only man to do so.
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Old 01-12-2008, 01:45 PM   #44
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Default Re: Joe Louis Never Proved That He Deserves The Number One Slot ATG Heavyweights

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sonny's jab
I think it's fair to say Joe Louis was already into his prime when Schmeling knocked him out.
It depends on how you define prime though. You could narrow it down to a single year or even a single fight.

When Schmeling knocked Joe Louis out Louis was regarded as the best heavyweight in the world, more or less proven by the way he destroyed Max Baer.
Louis's win over Max Baer still stands out as one of his most perfect victories, he looked a fairly complete fighter there, and that was a couple of fights earlier than the loss to Schmeling.

Louis probably lost to Schmeling simply because he under-estimated him, didn't train right, and didn't know what to expect from his style- Schmeling was a very good fighter. The rematch suggests Louis was the better fighter, he upped his game and Schmeling couldn't cope, it wasn't remotely competitive. Still, that doesn't discount Schmeling's win, he fought a hell of a fight and beat a prime Joe Louis, IMO, the only man to do so.
I dont think a fighter barley 18 months into his pro career can be defined as in his prime.

While the destruction of Max Baer dose rank as one of Louis's best performences he undoubtedly improved as a fighter after that. If you look at the Louis of 1940, his punches were a lot more compact and he was a better finisher aplying more pressure. Contempories like Nat Fleisher and Gene Tunney thought so too.
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Old 01-12-2008, 01:50 PM   #45
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Originally Posted by janitor
I dont think a fighter barley 18 months into his pro career can be defined as in his prime.

While the destruction of Max Baer dose rank as one of Louis's best performences he undoubtedly improved as a fighter after that. If you look at the Louis of 1940, his punches were a lot more compact and he was a better finisher aplying more pressure. Contempories like Nat Fleisher and Gene Tunney thought so too.
Which of his performances in 1940 (or any time) were better than his win over Max Baer ?
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