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Old 11-12-2012, 02:05 AM   #31
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Default Re: Billy Conn vs Bob Fitzsimmons

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Originally Posted by HOUDINI View Post
You won't find a single trainer or former fighter who saw both men fight that would put Conn in Obriens league....none. Obrien rated the greatest lt heavy for decades....Conn never rated by anyone as the best.
I have never seen anyone from any time put O Brien in Fitzsimmons' league as a light heavyweight.
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Old 11-12-2012, 12:50 PM   #32
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Default Re: Billy Conn vs Bob Fitzsimmons

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Conn is not a top 10 all time great. In his prime no one thought of him as a all time great fighter. Excellent lt hwt but not at the level of a Moore, foster, obrien, Dillion, many others. It's only today where fighters of the past have been forgotten that Conn is raised to a high level.
Isn't Conn one of those "fighters of the past"? He definitely isn't a fighter of "today".

When he was fighting Billy was thought just as highly of as Dillon, Foster and several others were thought of when they themselves were fighting. It's after their careers were over and we had some perspective that we began to put them in their place historically. Were they calling O'Brien an "all-time great" while he was actually fighting(Or Dillon? Or Foster?)? I don't know, but if they did they were measuring him against a pretty sparse pool of fighters as only three people held the title before him.

Back in the day there were few fighters that I'm aware of who were considered or called "all-time greats" while they were still fighting. But to suggest that Billy Conn is not an all-time great, considering the perspective we now have on his career, is absurd. Can you name 10 light-heavies who outrank him?

Last edited by Surf-Bat; 11-12-2012 at 01:10 PM.
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Old 11-12-2012, 12:57 PM   #33
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Default Re: Billy Conn vs Bob Fitzsimmons

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Originally Posted by HOUDINI View Post
You won't find a single trainer or former fighter who saw both men fight that would put Conn in Obriens league....none. Obrien rated the greatest lt heavy for decades....Conn never rated by anyone as the best.

By SOME historians, not all. And how many LHs did they have to measure O'Brien against at that time? Not too many. There were only three champs before him, two decent and one well past his best. Being considered the "greatest light-heavyweight ever" had the same ring back then as being the "greatest cruiserweight ever" has now. Kinda hollow.

You have to remember that people were pretty dismissive of the LH division for many years and didn't take it as seriously as they would in later decades.
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Old 11-12-2012, 05:02 PM   #34
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Default Re: Billy Conn vs Bob Fitzsimmons

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Originally Posted by Surf-Bat View Post
By SOME historians, not all. And how many LHs did they have to measure O'Brien against at that time? Not too many. There were only three champs before him, two decent and one well past his best. Being considered the "greatest light-heavyweight ever" had the same ring back then as being the "greatest cruiserweight ever" has now. Kinda hollow.

You have to remember that people were pretty dismissive of the LH division for many years and didn't take it as seriously as they would in later decades.
Who would you pick in the hypothetical Surf?
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Old 11-12-2012, 06:37 PM   #35
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Default Re: Billy Conn vs Bob Fitzsimmons

Fleischer for one who knew all these fighters intimately rated Obrien at the top and did not rate Conn. Fitz was not an all time great when he won the lt hwt crown. Conn was not an all time top 10 great lt heavy champion. Did not have the skills and his opposition was poor.
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Old 11-12-2012, 06:45 PM   #36
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Default Re: Billy Conn vs Bob Fitzsimmons

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Originally Posted by HOUDINI View Post
You won't find a single trainer or former fighter who saw both men fight that would put Conn in Obriens league....none. Obrien rated the greatest lt heavy for decades....Conn never rated by anyone as the best.
O'Brien had his share of critics at the time as well.

He was a fighter who divided opinion.
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Old 11-12-2012, 07:02 PM   #37
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Default Re: Billy Conn vs Bob Fitzsimmons

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Originally Posted by HOUDINI View Post
Fleischer for one who knew all these fighters intimately rated Obrien at the top and did not rate Conn. Fitz was not an all time great when he won the lt hwt crown. Conn was not an all time top 10 great lt heavy champion. Did not have the skills and his opposition was poor.
Nat also rated Owen Moran over Tony Canzoneri. Tommy Ryan over Ray Robinson. Mysterious Billy Smith over Henry Armstrong, Barney Ross and Jimmy McLarnin. So while we can't completely dismiss Nat, we also shouldn't be blind to his lopsided biases towards a certain era.

Check out his Light-Heavy rankings. Jack Root makes the list, but not Billy Conn?? Let's see someone try and justify that one. Georges Carpentier? What did he do that merits him ranking over Conn?
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Old 11-12-2012, 07:07 PM   #38
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Default Re: Billy Conn vs Bob Fitzsimmons

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Who would you pick in the hypothetical Surf?
Conn, but Fitz always has a puncher's chance. Billy can be suckered into a punch-out (Irish temper), which could prove fatal against a whacker of Fitz's caliber. He would have to be careful every second he was in there.
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Old 11-12-2012, 07:46 PM   #39
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Default Re: Billy Conn vs Bob Fitzsimmons

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Originally Posted by HOUDINI View Post
You won't find a single trainer or former fighter who saw both men fight that would put Conn in Obriens league....none. Obrien rated the greatest lt heavy for decades....Conn never rated by anyone as the best.
Justify your stance as to why O'Brien is greater than Conn.
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Old 11-13-2012, 07:34 AM   #40
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Default Re: Billy Conn vs Bob Fitzsimmons

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Justify your stance as to why O'Brien is greater than Conn.
It's too much of a stretch - it can't be justified - anyone who's seen the film of the O'Brien vs Tommy Burns knows O'Brien was a joke - one of the few fighters to make me say out loud - OH MYY GODD?!! The guys wasn't even fighter he and looked as flimsy as a blade of grass and couldn't punch his way out of a paper bag and the voice over man on the footage I have witnessed spends all his time deriding O'Brien as a joke and chuckling at his silly style ofliterally running away around the ring - it was pretty embarrassing stuff and he should've been thrown out haha
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