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Old 09-29-2010, 10:15 AM   #1
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Default ***The Top 50 Wins Of The Decade, 1990-1999***

RATIONALE

I've always believed that you can compare/contrast the values of any win achieved by any fighter, irrespective of era or weight class. For example, Joe Frazier beat Muhammad Ali for the heavyweight title in 1971, and I can quite confidently say that it is a better win than, say, Ricardo Lopez beating Saman Sorjatorung for the minimumweight world title in 1993. These fights were in different weight classes and different eras, so they are in every way very different fights. However, you can always evaluate a win by considering the quality of the opponent, the quality of the winning performance, and all of the relevant intangibles and circumstances. Frazier convincingly defeating Ali was more valuable and impressive in every way for a heavyweight than Lopez stopping Sorjatorung was for a minimumweight, so it is a better win.

If you disagree with what I've said so far, you should probably turn back now as this article is founded on this premise.

CRITERIA


It's quite a simple formula, and I believe I stick to this throughout:

Quality of Win = Quality of Opponent + Quality of Performance + Consideration of Intangibles/Circumstances



OK, so here we go with the main body of the list...


THE TOP 50 WINS OF THE DECADE, 1990-1999

(Quality of Opponent markings are A to D,
Quality of Performance markings are A to D,
but these marks are only indicators, they are not the same as giving a fight an actual score out of 10, which I have not done. The relevant intangibles and circumstances in each and every case are too important to reduce the evaluation to giving a score for different set categories then adding or averaging those scores)



50.James Toney RTD9 Iran Barkley / Super-Middleweight / 1993
Quality of Opponent: C+
Quality of Performance: A+
What makes it a great win: This display is up there with Whitaker-McGirt II, McGirt-Brown and Jones-Toney as one of the finest all-round boxing clinics of the decade. As is often forgotten now, Barkley was the pre-fight favourite. He had recently beaten Thomas Hearns again, and was perceived as a bigger, stronger, rougher competitor than the younger Toney. The Blade attempted to stamp his authority from the first bell, rushing out and swinging for the fences. Toney met him in centre ring, used his superior accuracy and defence to outland him in the opening exchanges, and basically won every minute of every round until the slaughter was halted in the 9th.
The cynic would say: Barkley was a mediocrity by this point.

49.Vuyani Bungu UD12 Kennedy McKinney / Super-Bantamweight / 1994
Quality of Opponent: B
Quality of Performance: B-
What makes it a great win: The 1994 Upset Of The Year. Bungu was 23-2, and the vast majority of those fights were against journeymen in his native South Africa. Kennedy McKinney was creeping into pound-for-pound recognition, forging a 27-0-1 record in the process, and defending the IBF superbantam title 5 times. Bungu fought his way to a shock result and a unanimous decision. He repeated the trick 3 years later.
The cynic would say: McKinney took Bungu lightly. The rematch was much closer, even though McKinney was past his best by then.

48.Jorge Fernando Castro TKO9 John David Jackson / Middleweight / 1994
Quality of Opponent: B-
Quality of Performance: C-
What makes it a great win: Like Foreman-Moorer and Pacquiao-Sasakul, Castro’s win makes it in to the top 50 because of the unlikely and stunning nature of the victory. John David Jackson was 32-0, and was the younger, fresher, faster, slicker, smarter boxer, and he completely outboxed the grizzled veteran Castro for 8 rounds. The 9th round is perhaps the greatest turn-around in the history of boxing. Castro was in all sorts of trouble, the referee seemed to be moving in to stop the fight, and then the Argentine landed a punch which turned the fight on its head. Two knockdowns later it was over.
The cynic would say: Castro was dominated and toyed with for most of the fight, his limitations as a fighter were laid bare by a better boxer.

47.Floyd Mayweather Jr TKO2 Angel Manfredy / Super-Featherweight / 1998
Quality of Opponent: B-
Quality of Performance: A-
What makes it a great win: Manfredy had stopped a prime Arturo Gatti earlier that year. It was viewed as only a matter of time till this dangerous fighter won his first world title. In what was supposed to be a real test for the young Mayweather (18-0), Floyd got the stoppage in only the 2nd round after proving far too quick and slick for the overmatched Manfredy. It remains the best early KO win of Mayweather’s career.
The cynic would say: A pathetic decision from the referee to stop the fight at that point, where Manfredy was clearly aware and defending himself.

46.Lennox Lewis UD12 Evander Holyfield / Heavyweight / 1999
Quality of Opponent: B+
Quality of Performance: C+
What makes it a great win: Holyfield fought far better than he did in the first fight, and Lewis still did enough to edge the fight. Lewis became the unified and undisputed heavyweight champion, and over the two fights he had proven to be the better fighter.
The cynic would say: The decision was far wider than it should have been. Lewis was lucky to get the win vs a well past-prime Evander.
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Old 09-29-2010, 10:16 AM   #2
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Default Re: ***the top 50 wins of the decade, 1990-1999***

45.Montell Griffin UD12 James Toney / Light-Heavyweight / 1996
Quality of Opponent: B+
Quality of Performance: B
What makes it a great win: Griffin became only the second man to beat Toney in 1995, but it was a highly controversial and disputed decision. Toney won 9 fights on the bounce after that clash, getting 7 stoppages, and looking particularly good in some of them, such as the Freddie Delgado bout in ’95. He was favourite to “right the wrong” against ‘Ice’ when they met again, but Griffin fought a disciplined and tactical fight to outbox Toney – and merit the win this time.
The cynic would say: Neither man performed especially well in an underwhelming clash.

44.Ike Quartey TKO11 Crisanto Espana / Welterweight / 1994
Quality of Opponent: B-
Quality of Performance: B+
What makes it a great win: Quartey was an unknown, having fought out his career in Ghana and Europe, when he was given a shot at Espana’s WBA welterweight title. Espana had a 30-0 record and had mixed in far better company (including the domination then TKO of Meldrick Taylor in ’92). Quartey produced a performance in the same spirit as the great Azumah Nelson had done against Salvador Sanchez 12 years earlier; the unknown Ghanaian surprised the audience by pushing the champion all the way through the fight – though unlike Nelson, it was Quartey who got the late stoppage and the championship.
The cynic would say: Espana only had 3 or 4 meaningful wins in his career, his record was padded with bums.

43.Ike Ibeabuchi UD12 David Tua / Heavyweight / 1997
Quality of Opponent: B+
Quality of Performance: B+
What makes it a great win: A magnificent clash between two of the most exciting and explosive young heavyweights in the world. Ibeabuchi was 16-0, Tua 27-0. Tua was favourite to win as he had beaten a higher standard of competition; holding stoppage wins over John Ruiz and Oleg Maskaev. In one of the fights of the decade (where the most punches were thrown in a heavyweight title fight since Compubox began), Ibeabuchi got the decision and installed himself as the hottest fighter in that weight class.
The cynic would say: Tua was a B-class fighter who was never truly world level, he had no plan B if his power was not resulting in KOs.

42.Johnny Tapia UD12 Danny Romero / Super-Flyweight / 1997
Quality of Opponent: B
Quality of Performance: A-
What makes it a great win: This was one of the most widely anticipated grudge matches of the decade. Tapia, the WBO champion making his 12th defence, versus Romero, the IBF champion, making his 4th defence. Tapia, the undefeated 30 year old wildman; Romero, the 23 year old firebrand on a hot streak of KO wins. All eyes were on Las Vegas that night in ’97, and Tapia produced a superb boxing performance to outpoint his hated rival. It was the zenith of Tapia’s excellent career.
The cynic would say: Romero had already lost in a world title fight to Willy Salazar (41-21-1), this win was overstated because of the animosity between these two.

41.Marco Antonio Barrera TKO12 Kennedy McKinney / Super-Bantamweight / 1996
Quality of Opponent: B
Quality of Performance: A-
What makes it a great win: McKinney was a proven fighter, having had a reign as IBF champion before the only defeat of his career so far, a decision loss which may have been the result of his own complacency. In an exciting fight, it was youth which triumphed over experience as Marco Antonio Barrera produced a fantastic display to drop McKinney five times en route to a final round TKO; after rising from a KD once himself.
The cynic would say: Bungu had already shown McKinney was eminently beatable.

40.Lennox Lewis TKO2 Donovan “Razor” Ruddock / Heavyweight / 1992
Quality of Opponent: B-
Quality of Performance: A
What makes it a great win: Ruddock had two wars with Mike Tyson, lasting 7 and the full 12 rounds respectively. With Tyson now incarcerated, this fight was to establish who was the most feared knockout puncher in the division. Lewis belied his lack of top level experience to blow Ruddock out of the water in only 2 rounds. Lewis was installed as the number 1 contender for Riddick Bowe’s WBC strap… and was awarded the belt when Bowe relinquished it rather than fight him.
The cynic would say: Ruddock was stopped by Tyson before this and Tommy Morrison not long after this. Lewis did not achieve anything special here.

39.Dariusz Michalczewski UD12 Virgil Hill / Light-Heavyweight / 1997
Quality of Opponent: B-
Quality of Performance: B
What makes it a great win: Michalczewski was making the 10th defence of his world title in this light-heavyweight unification match, but in the 1990s a German fighter holding the WBO belt and having all of his fights in Germany did not receive much recognition or respect from the worldwide boxing media. That all changed when Michalczewski took Hill’s WBA and IBF belts with a unanimous decision, becoming the first man since Thomas Hearns to defeat Hill.
The cynic would say: Jones beat Hill far easier immediately after this fight.

38.Mike Tyson TKO7 Donovan “Razor” Ruddock / Heavyweight / 1991
Quality of Opponent: B
Quality of Performance: B+
What makes it a great win: Ruddock was one of the most feared contenders in the division, having amassed a record of 19 KOs in 25 wins, including a 4th round stoppage of Michael Dokes one year previously. Tyson was still on the comeback trail after suffering the almighty shock of the loss to Douglas, and suspicions persisted about Tyson’s chin and mental strength. The two produced a vicious heavyweight punch-out with Tyson achieving one of his best wins, ending it in the 7th.
The cynic would say: Ruddock was a gatekeeper who was wiped out by Lennox Lewis in two rounds not long after.
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Old 09-29-2010, 10:17 AM   #3
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Default Re: ***the top 50 wins of the decade, 1990-1999***

37.Nigel Benn TKO1 Iran Barkley / Middleweight / 1990
Quality of Opponent: B-
Quality of Performance: A-
What makes it a great win: Iran Barkley had losses on his record, but he had gone the full championship distance with great fighters like Michael Nunn, Sumbu Kalambay and Roberto Duran. The Nunn fight was Barkley’s latest before meeting Benn, and the Blade had pushed one of the brightest stars in the game to the maximum, only dropping a majority decision. Barkley had knocked out Thomas Hearns in ’88, and Benn had been stopped by Chris Eubank in ’90, so many observers believed Barkley was a good bet for an early knockout. Benn caused a sensation with a 1st round TKO after a frantic fight in Las Vegas.
The cynic would say: Barkley was coming off 2 defeats, and the stoppage was premature.

36.Roy Jones Jr KO4 Virgil Hill / Catchweight / 1998
Quality of Opponent: B-
Quality of Performance: A-
What makes it a great win: Virgil Hill had recently gone the full 12 rounds with unbeaten long-time WBO champ Dariusz Michalczewski in Germany. Before that fight Hill had been unbeaten for 6 years, making 10 consecutive defences of the WBA title, and then adding the IBF championship by defeating 30-0 Henry Maske in the fight before Michalczewski. Hill had never been stopped… until Jones knocked him out with a bodyshot in only 4 rounds.
The cynic would say: Hill was past-prime and coming off a defeat.

35.Manny Pacquiao KO8 Chatchai Sasakul / Flyweight / 1998
Quality of Opponent: A
Quality of Performance: C+
What makes it a great win: Sasakul was going for 6 straight wins in WBC title fights, and was 33-1, having avenged his only defeat to Yuri Arbachakov not long before this. Pacquiao had a KO loss to a journeyman on his record, was only 20 years old, and was in his 1st world title challenge. In Sasakul’s home city of Bangkok, he outboxed Pacquiao and led on all three scorecards before being caught with a big shot, and then finished in brutal fashion. This was not a high class performance by Pacquiao, but in the spirit of Foreman-Moorer, he had achieved an unexpectedly brilliant win through his power and desire.
The cynic would say: On another night, Sasakul doesn’t get hit with that shot and cruises to a unanimous decision.

34.Ricardo Lopez SD12 Rosendo Alvarez / Minimumweight / 1998
Quality of Opponent: B
Quality of Performance: B
What makes it a great win: The defining moment in the career of the great Ricardo Lopez. Alvarez had fought him to a stalemate 8 months earlier, putting the first blemish on what had been a 47-0 record. Many suspected the younger man would be hungrier in the rematch, and would provide Lopez with his first loss. This fear grew when Alvarez weighed in over the limit for the fight, coming in 5lbs heavier than Finito, a huge difference for men that size. In another hard-fought match, Lopez took a split decision. He had passed his hardest test.
The cynic would say: Alvarez does not have the resume of a top fighter, a win over him does not mean as much as a Lopez win over someone like Carbajal or Gonzalez would have. Lopez failed to dominate Alvarez in either fight.

33.Muangchai Kittikasem TKO6 Sot Chitalada / Flyweight / 1991
Quality of Opponent: B+
Quality of Performance: A-
What makes it a great win: Chitalada was making the 5th defence of his title, and had beaten some top fighters in that run, including a points win over Jung Koo Chang in Korea (Chang had beaten Chitalada in Sot’s 5th pro fight). By comparison, Kittikasem was a very green and unproven fighter, having been dropped 4 times and stopped by a young Michael Carbajal in his only fight outside Thailand to date. In a bruising encounter, Kittikasem stood and traded with Chitalada, building up a considerable lead in the scoring before the referee was forced to stop the punishment in six. A dominant and thoroughly impressive display of hardcore flyweight fighting.
The cynic would say: Chitalada was in decline by then, his career nosedived after this, winning a couple of fights against journeymen before Kittikasem stopped him again, and retired him in the process.

32.Junior Jones UD12 Marco Antonio Barrera / Super-Bantamweight / 1997
Quality of Opponent: A-
Quality of Performance: B-
What makes it a great win: Jones wasn’t supposed to beat Barrera once, never mind twice, but he just about deserved the verdict in a much closer fight. Jones consolidated his position as one of the biggest new stars in boxing, and Barrera drifted into the boxing wilderness having seemingly accepted these back-to-back losses.
The cynic would say: Barrera fought like he was still traumatized by the stoppage defeat in the first fight. His tentative approach made it easy for Jones to get the W without actually producing a particularly good performance.

31.Kennedy McKinney TKO4 Junior Jones / Super-Bantamweight / 1997
Quality of Opponent: B+
Quality of Performance: B+
What makes it a great win: Within the last year or so, Junior Jones had beaten Marco Antonio Barrera twice and Orlando Canizales once. By contrast, McKinney had been outpointed by Vuyani Bungu and stopped by Barrera. These two guys’ careers seemed to be taking opposite trajectories at the time they met, with Jones a rising star and McKinney a fading force. The fight itself was brief, brilliant war, with McKinney overcoming Jones’s pressure and stopping Barrera’s conqueror in the 4th.
The cynic would say: Jones had the Indian sign over Barrera, but he was not a top quality operator. Morales dispatched him in 4 rounds in his next outing, and he was stopped by Paul Ingle in his only other major world title fight.
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Old 09-29-2010, 10:17 AM   #4
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Default Re: ***the top 50 wins of the decade, 1990-1999***

30.Gerald McClellan TKO5 Julian Jackson / Middleweight / 1993
Quality of Opponent: B+
Quality of Performance: B+
What makes it a great win: Jackson hadn’t lost in 7 years since he met a prime version of ATG lightmiddle Mike McCallum, and had went 17-0(16 KO’s) in that time, beating Terry Norris, Herol Graham and Thomas Tate amongst others. This was his 6th defence of the WBC middleweight title. McClellan had fearsome punching credentials as well, but was far less proven and/or experienced (his last opponent before meeting Jackson was 30-14-2). In a vicious fight, McClellan’s strength and toughness won out in the 5th.
The cynic would say: McClellan was naturally a significantly bigger man than Jackson.

29.Azumah Nelson TKO5 Gabriel Ruelas / Super-Featherweight / 1995
Quality of Opponent: B
Quality of Performance: A-
What makes it a great win: Another great Nelson ‘past-prime’ performance. The Professor was coming off a loss, was 37 years old, and was facing the WBC superfeatherweight champion Ruelas, record 43-2. The two had a close fight 2 years previously, Nelson edging an MD, and most suspected this would be similarly tight. Nelson controlled the fight, took a lead on the cards, then stopped the younger, fresher fighter in the 5th.
The cynic would say: Ruelas was coming off the tragic win over Jimmy Garcia where Garcia passed away as a result of injuries sustained in the fight, this must have affected Ruelas mentally.

28.Evander Holyfield RTD8 Michael Moorer / Heavyweight / 1997
Quality of Opponent: B+
Quality of Performance: B
What makes it a great win: Moorer had outfought and outpointed Holyfield 3 years earlier. Although Moorer had been knocked out by a massive George Foreman punch in his next fight, he had then went 4-0, winning the IBF belt. Holyfield had been stopped by Bowe, then beat Tyson twice. This fight was seen as a crucial point in both mens’ careers… and Holyfield dropped Moorer five times before the end in the 8th.
The cynic would say: Moorer was poor in his previous fight (vs Vaughan Bean), and never beat another top 10 ranked heavyweight after this. He was also overweight for this one.

27.Michael Carbajal KO7 Humberto “Chiquita” Gonzalez / Light-Flyweight / 1993
Quality of Opponent: A-
Quality of Performance: C
What makes it a great win: The comeback! Chiquita Gonzalez was 36-1, reigning WBC kingpin, and when he dropped Carbajal twice it looked like he would take Carbajal’s IBF belt as well. Despite being well adrift on all cards, Carbajal stopped Gonzalez in the 7th round of an epic war.
The cynic would say: Gonzalez’s chin was a weakness (he was stopped in 6 by the relatively light-hitting Rolando Pascua a few years earlier).

26.Chris Eubank TKO9 Nigel Benn / Middleweight / 1990
Quality of Opponent: B+
Quality of Performance: A
What makes it a great win: Benn was on a roll at the time, having stopped Doug DeWitt and Iran Barkley in his last two outings. Eubank was unproven by comparison, having fought an inferior standard of opposition in his career to date. This was a huge domestic showdown in the UK between hated rivals, and after an incredible battle it was Benn who wilted in the 9th round.
The cynic would say: Michael Watson had already stopped Benn, proving that Benn’s punch resistance was questionable at the highest level.

25.Mike McCallum KO11 Michael Watson / Middleweight / 1990
Quality of Opponent: B+
Quality of Performance: A
What makes it a great win: A sublime performance from the victor. Watson was a natural middleweight and was coming off a fantastic stoppage win over Nigel Benn (22-0). McCallum was a natural lightmiddle, but came over to London and dominated Watson before stopping him in the 11th to lift the WBA middleweight title. It was the only time Watson was ever dominated in his career, despite facing peak versions of Benn and Chris Eubank.
The cynic would say: Watson had one big win in his career (Benn) but never achieved anything else, so he was not proven at the top level.

24.Chatchai Sasakul UD12 Yuri Arbachakov / Flyweight / 1997
Quality of Opponent: A
Quality of Performance: A-
What makes it a great win: Chatchai Sasakul became the only man to ever defeat the great Arbachakov. Arbachakov had taken Sasakul’s zero 2 years earlier, and had been the WBC flyweight champion for the last 5 years, twice beating Muangchai Kittikasem in the process. Sasakul outfoxed and outboxed him to take a unanimous decision and the zero of a great fighter.
The cynic would say: Arbachakov never fought again, Sasakul got to him at the end of the road.

23.James “Buddy” McGirt UD12 Simon Brown / Welterweight / 1991
Quality of Opponent: B-
Quality of Performance: A+
What makes it a great win: The quality of the winning performance. Brown was coming off a good TKO win over Maurice Blocker, and his only loss in 35 fights was an SD to Marlon Starling 6 years earlier. Brown had been holding the IBF welterweight title since 1988, and unified when he beat Blocker. This was McGirt’s first title fight since Meldrick Taylor stopped him for the IBF light-welterweight belt, also in ’88, and he produced a sensational display to emphatically take the strap. Brown would go on to win lightmiddle gold by beating Terry Norris.
The cynic would say: Simon Brown was a B-class fighter at best.
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Old 09-29-2010, 10:18 AM   #5
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22.Roy Jones Jr KO1 Montell Griffin / Light-Heavyweight / 1997
Quality of Opponent: B
Quality of Performance: A
What makes it a great win: Griffin had been the first man to really test Jones, winning most of the early rounds, landing some eye-catching clean punches, and making things a lot more uncomfortable for Jones than was usually the case in his fights, before taking Jones’s zero by DQ after Roy hit him when he was on his knees. Griffin had beaten James Toney twice before he even fought Jones, so many believed he was the real deal. The anticipation for the rematch was huge, and Jones justified his Superman tag with a scintillating 1st round KO.
The cynic would say: Other than Toney, Griffin never beat another top fighter in his entire career. He may have had Toney’s number to some extent, but he was never a great fighter.

21.Roy Jones Jr UD12 Bernard Hopkins / Middleweight / 1993
Quality of Opponent: A-
Quality of Performance: B-
What makes it a great win: To this date, Jones is still the only man to clearly and convincingly defeat Hopkins in a comfortable, controversy-free verdict. Hopkins was 22-1, Jones was 21-0, this was a fight for the vacant world title between two hungry young stars, and Jones used his speed to outbox Hopkins. B-Hop would not lose again for 12 years.
The cynic would say: Hopkins was unproven and inexperienced (he had only went the 12-round championship distance once before this fight, and his previous fight was against a guy with a 26-14 record). The B-Hop of 1993 was a different fighter to the peak B-Hop of the late 90s/early 00s in terms of style and skills.

20.Julio Cesar Chavez UD12 Hector Camacho / Light-Welterweight / 1992
Quality of Opponent: B-
Quality of Performance: A-
What makes it a great win: One of the major Mexico vs Puerto Rico clashes of modern times. Camacho had achieved solid wins over Greg Haugen and Vinny Pazienza in recent years, and some felt that his speed could trouble Chavez as JCC had found Meldrick Taylor’s blazing hands so difficult to deal with in their 1990 clash. Chavez was utterly dominant as it turned out, cutting off the ring brilliantly and doing all the damage in the fight. It is worth noting that a possibly past-prime Chavez beat Camacho more clearly on the cards than a prime Felix Trinidad managed when Hector was a further 2 years older and a further 7lbs higher in weight.
The cynic would say: Camacho was weight-drained and folded both mentally and physically in the latter half of the bout.

19.Pernell Whitaker UD12 James “Buddy” McGirt / Welterweight / 1994
Quality of Opponent: B+
Quality of Performance: A+
What makes it a great win: Possibly one of the greatest offensive boxing displays ever caught on film. Pernell Whitaker was a natural lightweight, perceived to be a defensive fighter, and never someone who was viewed as a great attacking force, yet he stepped in with a naturally bigger man, and completely dominated a world-class fighter. Sweet Pea used every punch in the book to produce a sublime display of the sweet science.
The cynic would say: McGirt was past-prime by this point, he offered little resistance and was stopped by Andrew Council a year later.

18.Riddick Bowe TKO8 Evander Holyfield / Heavyweight / 1995
Quality of Opponent: A-
Quality of Performance: B+
What makes it a great win: The trilogy decider was as hard-fought as the other two, and Bowe was victorious to take the series. This was the only stoppage defeat suffered by Holyfield when he was prime or near-prime. Bowe did what Lennox Lewis (twice), Mike Tyson (twice) and George Foreman all failed to do.
The cynic would say: Bowe had a 37lbs weight advantage, and Holyfield had lost to Moorer not long before this, to fuel concerns about Evander’s health.

17.Lennox Lewis KO1 Andrew Golota / Heavyweight / 1997
Quality of Opponent: B+
Quality of Performance: A-
What makes it a great win: This was viewed as a massive fight for the heavyweight division, with people split over who would win. Golota had badly beaten up Riddick Bowe twice in his last 2 fights, only to get DQ’d twice, but the Pole had proved his ability beyond all doubt with his performances. Lewis had been stopped by Oliver McCall only a couple of years previously, and many felt Golota could do to Lewis what he did to Bowe. Lewis won this battle of the superheavyweights in stunning fashion in only 90 or so seconds.
The cynic would say: Golota was always erratic in his performances, and mentally weak.

16.Oliver McCall TKO2 Lennox Lewis / Heavyweight / 1994
Quality of Opponent: A
Quality of Performance: B+
What makes it a great win: Lewis was viewed by many as the number 1 heavyweight in the world, above even Bowe and Holyfield. The huge Brit was 25-0 and the reigning WBC champion. McCall had losses to guys like Buster Douglas and Orlin Norris on his ledger, and was supposed to be a routine defence. McCall won by TKO in round 2.
The cynic would say: A lucky punch and a premature stoppage.

15.Vince Phillips TKO10 Kostya Tszyu / Light-Welterweight / 1997
Quality of Opponent: A-
Quality of Performance: A
What makes it a great win: Tszyu was making his 6th consecutive defence and was 18-0, whereas Phillips was coming off a loss to Romallis Ellis. Phillips had been stopped in 3 rounds by Ike Quartey in his only other world title fight. Phillips pulled off a huge shock by stopping Tszyu in 10 rounds. Tszyu would not lose another fight for 8 years.
The cynic would say: Tszyu was inexperienced and complacent.
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Old 09-29-2010, 10:18 AM   #6
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14.Frankie Randall SD12 Julio Cesar Chavez / Light-Welterweight / 1994
Quality of Opponent: B+
Quality of Performance: A-
What makes it a great win: Chavez was 89-0-1 at the time. Randall dropped him for the first knockdown of the great Mexican’s career en route to a seismic upset. Enough said.
The cynic would say: Chavez was clearly past his best by this time.

13.Azumah Nelson TKO8 Jeff Fenech / Super-Featherweight / 1992
Quality of Opponent: B+
Quality of Performance: A
What makes it a great win: Nelson was the clear underdog for this rematch, as the vast majority of spectators believed he had been well beaten by Fenech in their 1st fight 9 months earlier. The Professor, nearing 34 years of age, travelled to Fenech’s back yard, and took his zero in front of a large partisan crowd in Melbourne with an 8th round stoppage after a dominant performance. The Ring’s Upset Of The Year for 1992.
The cynic would say: Fenech was stopped by Calvin Grove in his next fight, he was on the downswing.

12.Pernell Whitaker UD12 Azumah Nelson / Lightweight / 1990
Quality of Opponent: B+
Quality of Performance: A
What makes it a great win: Nelson was undefeated in 8 years since pushing Salvador Sanchez all the way as a green young fighter, and after this fight he went on to achieve some more great wins, but on this night he was completely dominated and outclassed, for probably the only time in his career before he was more or less shot and was beaten by Leija in 1998. Whitaker produced one of the best boxing performances of the decade, jabbing and boxing beautifully off the back foot.
The cynic would say: Nelson was never a real lightweight.

11.Junior Jones DQ5 Marco Antonio Barrera / Super-Bantamweight / 1996
Quality of Opponent: A
Quality of Performance: A
What makes it a great win: Barrera was 43-0, making 10th consecutive defence of superbantamweight title, and a highly rated young pound-for-pound star. He was expected to dominate Jones, but Jones forced MAB’s corner to stop the fight in the 5th after dropping and seriously hurting the Mexican.
The cynic would say: Jones was just an inferior fighter who had Barrera’s number.

10.Julio Cesar Chavez TKO12 Meldrick Taylor / Light-Welterweight / 1990
Quality of Opponent: A
Quality of Performance: B+
What makes it a great win: Taylor was undefeated in 25 fights and the most highly rated member of the famous 1984 US Olympic team. In a hotly anticipated fight, Chavez managed to hang on to his treasured ‘O’ by around 2 seconds – despite absorbing hundreds of punches from the flying fists of Taylor, Chavez stayed cool and wore Meldrick down gradually before the scintillating final round.
The cynic would say: Chavez didn’t deserve the win at all, it was a bogus refereeing call.

9.Pernell Whitaker UD12 James “Buddy” McGirt / Welterweight / 1993
Quality of Opponent: A-
Quality of Performance: A-
What makes it a great win: McGirt was the naturally bigger man, reigning champion, hadn’t lost in 5 years, and was a pound-for-pound high flyer. He has won the WBC welterweight strap in one of the performances of the decade vs Simon Brown two years earlier, and seemed determined to hold on to the belt in a defence against another of the top pound-for-pound fighters. But on the night Pernell Whitaker showed surprising strength and infighting ability to take a competitive decision win, using his fast hands and blistering combinations to edge more rounds.
The cynic would say: Meldrick Taylor had already shown that quick hands could beat McGirt.

8.Riddick Bowe UD12 Evander Holyfield / Heavyweight / 1992
Quality of Opponent: A
Quality of Performance: A+
What makes it a great win: Holyfield was 28-0, and the undisputed heavyweight champion. What Holyfield lacked in size, he more than made up for in terms of experience (having established himself as the number 1 cruiserweight in the world before moving up to heavyweight), heart and ability. Holyfield had already proven he could be effective against much larger men in wins over Buster Douglas and George Foreman. It took one of the greatest heavyweight boxing performances of the decade (possibly the most complete performance in a big fight) from Bowe to take the titles in an all-time great heavyweight fight. Round 10 will always remain legendary for the epic back-and-forth which occurred between the two.
The cynic would say: Bowe enjoyed great size advantages.

7.James Toney TKO11 Michael Nunn / Middleweight / 1991
Quality of Opponent: A-
Quality of Performance: A-
What makes it a great win: Nunn was 36-0, world champion and highly rated pound-for-pound fighter, and was on a great tear having beaten Curry, Starling, Barkley, Tate and Kalambay. The fight was in Nunn’s hometown, and he had big height and reach advantages. Nunn was well ahead at the midway point, but Toney turned the fight around in the three rounds leading up to the 11th, then eventually got the stoppage in a chaotic finish.
The cynic would say: Toney landed a lucky punch.

6.George Foreman KO10 Michael Moorer / Heavyweight / 1994
Quality of Opponent: B
Quality of Performance: C
What makes it a great win: This fight may not score too highly in terms of opponent or performance, but this is one of those rare instances where the circumstances ensure truly great win status. What else is there to say about this? A 46 year old man shocks the world by snatching victory from the jaws of defeat with a KO – 21 years after he first won the title.
The cynic would say: It was the mother of all lucky punches!

Last edited by Popkins; 09-29-2010 at 10:29 AM.
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Old 09-29-2010, 10:19 AM   #7
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5.Evander Holyfield TKO11 Mike Tyson / Heavyweight / 1996
Quality of Opponent: B
Quality of Performance: A
What makes it a great win: 29 out of 30 boxing writers picked Tyson to win by KO. Holyfield was perceived to be in terminal decline, having lost to Moorer and been stopped by Bowe in recent fights. Tyson had won his 4 return fights in a combined total of only 8 rounds. In Tyson’s previous fight, he had blown away Bruce Seldon in the 1st round, whereas in Holyfield’s most recent outing he had struggled with former middleweight Bobby Czyz. The scene was set for Tyson to crush the first genuinely big-name opponent of his comeback, and this seemed the likely outcome when Tyson landed a big shot in the opening seconds of the bout. But by the 11th round it was Holyfield who had his arm raised, after dominating most of the fight to the surprise of the watching world.
The cynic would say: Post-jail Tyson was not close to the same fighter as pre-jail Tyson.

4.Evander Holyfield MD12 Riddick Bowe / Heavyweight / 1993
Quality of Opponent: A
Quality of Performance: A
What makes it a great win: Riddick Bowe was undefeated, 26 years old, 6ft 5in tall with an 81in reach, and typically weighed around 240-245lbs. Evander Holyfield was 31 years old, 6ft 2in tall with a 78in reach, and usually weighed in between 210 and 220lbs. More importantly, Bowe had decisively beaten Holyfield exactly one year earlier, punishing the Real Deal down the stretch to take his titles and his zero with a unanimous decision. Holyfield disregarded public opinion as well as all of the disadvantages he faced to grind out a majority decision and regain his crown. It remains one of the most impressive David vs Goliath heavyweight wins of modern times.
The cynic would say: Bowe was overweight and undertrained.

3.Roy Jones Jr UD12 James Toney / Super-Middleweight / 1994
Quality of Opponent: A
Quality of Performance: A+
What makes it a great win: In 1994, James Toney was widely regarded as the #2 fighter on the planet behind Pernell Whitaker, having shown his class throughout the 90s in fights with guys like Michael Nunn and Mike McCallum. Despite Toney’s superior experience and high skill level, Jones announces himself as the most electrifying fighter on the planet with a stunning virtual shut-out triumph. Roy’s speed of hand and foot, punch variety and slick intelligence were on all show in a masterclass.
The cynic would say: Toney was weight-drained.

2.Thomas Hearns UD12 Virgil Hill / Light-Heavyweight / 1991
Quality of Opponent: B+
Quality of Performance: A
What makes it a great win: Tommy Hearns was about a decade from his peak, and around 23-28lbs past his best fighting weight. Virgil Hill was a natural light-heavyweight who had built up a 30-0 record and had been WBA champion for the past 4 years. The Hitman pulled off a glorious upset by going back to his roots, and using his technical ability to outbox the younger, larger man. This wasn’t just a faded great turning the clock back, this was a mature and seasoned fighter showing another dimension to his game.
The cynic would say: Hill was not a top-class lightheavyweight champion, historically speaking.

1.James “Buster” Douglas KO10 Mike Tyson / Heavyweight / 1990
Quality of Opponent: A+
Quality of Performance: A
What makes it a great win: A 42-1 underdog out-thought, out-fought, and knocked out the baddest man on the planet to cause a worldwide sensation. After building up a points lead Douglas was dropped heavily towards the end of the 8th. Tyson went for the jugular once round 9 began but Douglas showed the heart and steel of a champion to repel him, then finish him off with a brilliant combination in the 10th. The number 1 win of the decade by light years.
The cynic would say: This wasn’t peak condition Tyson. But the cynic would really be nitpicking here. Douglas fought him in the Tyson era, and was the man to end his reign.


List Statistics

- Heavyweight is the division which contributed most, with 13 of the 50 fights. Second was Middleweight (7) and third was Super-Bantamweight (5).
- Evander Holyfield was involved in most fights, taking part in 6 of the 50, with 3 wins (Tyson, Bowe 2, Moorer 2) and 3 losses (Bowe 1 and 3, Lewis 2).
- Roy Jones had the most wins in the list, with 4 wins from 4 fights (Hill, Griffin, Hopkins, Toney).

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Old 09-29-2010, 10:19 AM   #8
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Honourable Mentions (in no order)

Stevie Johnston vs Angel Manfredy
Stevie Johnston vs Cesar Bazan II
Mark Johnson vs Alberto Jiminez (thanks to ESB poster sweet_scientist for this tip!)
Azumah Nelson vs Jesse James Leija III
Oscar De La Hoya vs Miguel Angel Gonzalez
Felix Trinidad vs Yory Boy Campas
Jose Luis Lopez vs Yory Boy Campas
Terry Norris vs Sugar Ray Leonard
Yuri Arbachakov vs Chatchai Sasakul I
Kostya Tszyu vs Miguel Angel Gonzalez
Myung Woo-Yuh vs Hiroki Ioka II
Willy Salazar vs Danny Romero
Michael Carbajal vs Jorge Arce
Oscar De La Hoya vs Genaro Hernandez
Floyd Mayweather Jr vs Genaro Hernandez
Junior Jones vs Orlando Canizales
Felix Trinidad vs Oba Carr
Alejandro Gonzalez vs Kevin Kelley
Julio Cesar Vasquez vs Winky Wright
Pernell Whitaker vs Julio Cesar Vasquez
Pernell Whitaker vs Greg Haugen
Oscar De La Hoya vs Rafael Ruelas


Omissions

This thread is MY opinion on the top 50 wins of the decade, I am not trying to present any of this as FACT. Therefore, the decisions I have made regarding the construction of this list are completely subjective.

For example, I have not included any fight in the top 50 in which I genuinely believe the wrong man had his arm raised. To me, it is nonsensical that anyone would think you should include fights in a list where you don't agree with the official verdict. How can I say I think a win was a great win, if I don't even think that it was a win?

Thus, the following wins were not included for consideration on this basis (the fighter I scored the fight for is listed second):

Oscar De La Hoya vs Ike Quartey
Oscar De La Hoya vs Pernell Whitaker
Montell Griffin vs James Toney I
Wilfredo Vasquez vs Orlando Canizales
Michael Moorer vs Evander Holyfield I


Now as I have included the details of wins that were achieved by (in my view) the wrong decision, I will also include details of fights that I feel should have been included and I wanted to include, but could not because the winning fighter (by my card) was robbed of a winning verdict (winning fighters given first):

Pernell Whitaker vs Julio Cesar Chavez
Lennox Lewis vs Evander Holyfield I
Oscar De La Hoya vs Felix Trinidad
Jeff Fenech vs Azumah Nelson I
James Toney vs Mike McCallum I



Additional Notes

- I have not included any fights which ended on cut stoppages (eg Manfredy-Gatti) or DQs (eg Griffin-Jones Jr 1), because in my opinion these fights end on technicalities and did not have a conclusive enough ending to merit inclusion in the top wins of the decade. I am not saying these are not wins, because by the rules of the sport they are. I am not saying they are not good wins either, a win on cuts or via DQ can indeed be a good win, I do not deny that. But it has been my personal choice that to be one of the top wins of the decade, a conclusive manner of victory is necessary, where one man asserted his superiority through fighting. A KO, TKO, or a convincing points win is a conclusive victory IMO. The doctor deciding a cut is too gruesome or a fighter making an error of judgement and suffering the wrath of the referee is not.

- I have not included Nigel Benn vs Gerald McClellan, Chris Eubank vs Michael Watson II, or any such victory where the losing fighter suffered permanent injury through that fight. This is a personal decision again. I think both Benn and Eubank performed brilliantly in doing what they had to do, but when the opponent could for all we know have been struggling against the effects of internal injuries at the crucial point of the fight, then for me this invalidates celebration of the fight as a great win.




THANK YOU FOR READING AND ALL COMMENTS/CRITICISMS WELCOME.



THIS THREAD IS MY FAREWELL TO THE FORUM FOR A WHILE, SO GET YOUR COMMENTS IN BEFORE I DEPART.

Last edited by Popkins; 09-29-2010 at 10:30 AM.
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Old 09-29-2010, 10:20 AM   #9
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excellent one ( for real) but IMO white font is better. cheers
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Old 09-29-2010, 10:23 AM   #10
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Default Re: ***The Top 50 Wins Of The Decade, 1990-1999***

You should have the Lewis-Holyfield robbery draw rather than the 2nd fight. That was the better performance.
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Old 09-29-2010, 10:29 AM   #11
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Default Re: ***The Top 50 Wins Of The Decade, 1990-1999***

Bowe-Holyfield I should rate above the second fight. Good list though.
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Old 09-29-2010, 10:31 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NoHomeJerome View Post
You should have the Lewis-Holyfield robbery draw rather than the 2nd fight. That was the better performance.
It's the top 50 wins of the decade, not the top 50 performances. I can't put an official draw in a list of official wins, can I?
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Old 09-29-2010, 10:31 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wiirdo View Post
Bowe-Holyfield I should rate above the second fight. Good list though.
Bowe beating Holyfield was more impressive to you than Holyfield beating Bowe?

Interesting.
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Old 09-29-2010, 10:38 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Popkins View Post
Bowe beating Holyfield was more impressive to you than Holyfield beating Bowe?

Interesting.
Well Bowe's performance was one of the best HW performances I've ever seen against the very best version of Holyfield.
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Old 09-29-2010, 10:44 AM   #15
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awesome work man
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