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Old 07-20-2013, 04:57 PM   #1
NVSemin
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Default Who had greater opposition BEFORE a title fight SRL or FM?

Who had greater opposition BEFORE a title fight, Sugar Ray Leonard or Floyd Mayweather JR? I am just watching their fight, first 10 kinda even so far. Your opinion pls
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Old 07-20-2013, 07:08 PM   #2
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Default Re: Who had greater opposition BEFORE a title fight SRL or FM?

I'll only comment on SRL, except to say he takes this comparison pretty easily. PBF's pre Genaro Hernandez resume just doesn't come close.

Fireball Rodriguez was SRL's second fight. Willie was 10-1 at the time, and in short order would beat Ecklund and Goins before halting future 37-1-1 LWW Champion Leroy Haley in 12 for the NABF 140 pound title during February 1979. [Haley would defend that same title against Willie a couple years later over the distance, getting Leroy to Mamby.] In round four, Fireball stunned Ray with a hook, the most seriously anybody would hurt SRL until Montreal. Willie would aslo hold the USBA LWW Title in 1981, defending it against Johnny Lira before dropping it to Bumphus. [Earlier, he dropped his NABF Title to future Haley usurper Bruce Curry.]

Willie Rodriguez may have been the best 140 pounder of the late 1970s and early 1980s not to get a world title shot. For Ray, it was one of the most daunting challenges for any ATG in a second professional match ever, and SRL dominated aside from that fourth round stunner.


Beyond that, you have to look at Ray's run from June 1978 against Raf Rodriguez to Andy Price in September 1979. Between them, he stopped Mayweather Sr. in ten [which Starling would fail to do twice], decisioned Randy Shields [who held an amateur win over him], retires near champion Armando Muniz [who was flagrantly robbed in Acapulco of the undisputed WW Title over Napoles by Jose Sulamain], handed back away southpaw Adolfo Viruet the first knockdown of his career [outdoing Duran], went through ten rounds of hell against reigning Mexican MW champion Marcos Geraldo [his toughest match before Benitez], before going through Chiaverini and Ranzany.

Apply any standard you like. SRL earned his challenge of Benitez as thoroughly as any contender of his era possibly could have. About the only thing he didn't do was unify the NABF Title he took from Ranzany with the USBA Championship [which wasn't even created until the following year, with Hearns as their inaugural champion].
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Old 07-20-2013, 10:13 PM   #3
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Default Re: Who had greater opposition BEFORE a title fight SRL or FM?

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Originally Posted by Anubis View Post
I'll only comment on SRL, except to say he takes this comparison pretty easily. PBF's pre Genaro Hernandez resume just doesn't come close.

Fireball Rodriguez was SRL's second fight. Willie was 10-1 at the time, and in short order would beat Ecklund and Goins before halting future 37-1-1 LWW Champion Leroy Haley in 12 for the NABF 140 pound title during February 1979. [Haley would defend that same title against Willie a couple years later over the distance, getting Leroy to Mamby.] In round four, Fireball stunned Ray with a hook, the most seriously anybody would hurt SRL until Montreal. Willie would aslo hold the USBA LWW Title in 1981, defending it against Johnny Lira before dropping it to Bumphus. [Earlier, he dropped his NABF Title to future Haley usurper Bruce Curry.]

Willie Rodriguez may have been the best 140 pounder of the late 1970s and early 1980s not to get a world title shot. For Ray, it was one of the most daunting challenges for any ATG in a second professional match ever, and SRL dominated aside from that fourth round stunner.


Beyond that, you have to look at Ray's run from June 1978 against Raf Rodriguez to Andy Price in September 1979. Between them, he stopped Mayweather Sr. in ten [which Starling would fail to do twice], decisioned Randy Shields [who held an amateur win over him], retires near champion Armando Muniz [who was flagrantly robbed in Acapulco of the undisputed WW Title over Napoles by Jose Sulamain], handed back away southpaw Adolfo Viruet the first knockdown of his career [outdoing Duran], went through ten rounds of hell against reigning Mexican MW champion Marcos Geraldo [his toughest match before Benitez], before going through Chiaverini and Ranzany.

Apply any standard you like. SRL earned his challenge of Benitez as thoroughly as any contender of his era possibly could have. About the only thing he didn't do was unify the NABF Title he took from Ranzany with the USBA Championship [which wasn't even created until the following year, with Hearns as their inaugural champion].
Tnx for this comprehensive break down! I felt for the first time that I do not know shit abotu boxing
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Old 07-21-2013, 01:29 AM   #4
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Default Re: Who had greater opposition BEFORE a title fight SRL or FM?

No doubt this one goes to SRL, and by huge gulf.

Leonard beat Viruet, Munoz, Ranzany, Ecklund, and Floyd Sr. before he won the title. Munoz was highly respected from his efforts against Palomio and Napoles. Granted, he was badly hampered by tendonitis against Ray, but it was still a good mark.

Leonard also boasted a win against the highly regarded Any Price, who beat Pipino Cuevas and Carlos Palomino. Sugar Ray never let him get started. Marcos Giraldo and Randy Shields were both excellent wins for Ray as well.

By comparison Floyd's pretitle resume was pretty paltry. He had beaten the competent Tony Pep as well as the so so Hector Arroyo but that's about it. In both fghts he demonstrated the traits that would mark his reign of terror at 130: mobility, defense, pop in his right, etc, but there was nothing to suggest he would dismantle a fighter of Hernandez' caliber the way he did.

In fact the boxing media was shocked at how much trash Floyd's Jr. and Sr. talked in the buildup fight. The press was sure that the far more seasoned Hernandez would make Jr. pay for his lack of respect.

Of course, immediately after the fight Floyd insisted it was all to sell the fight. That has been a standard line through Mayweather's career, but in that instance it seemed more sincere than usual. Floyd has always praised Hernandez for being underrated.
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