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Old 08-07-2008, 11:22 AM   #46
Robbi
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Default Re: Leonard says Hearns was his biggest rival AND toughest opponent

IMO if Leonard had contiuned fighting after the Finch fight he would more than likely have moved into the jr middleweight division sometime in 1983. Thats if the proposed Hagler fight at the time never materialised at middleweight. If Leonard never retired in 1982 the negotiations might well have favoured Leonard and Hagler to meet at 154lbs. This is all just pure guess work. A rematch with Hearns could well have came off earlier than it eventually did.
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Old 08-07-2008, 12:46 PM   #47
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Default Re: Leonard says Hearns was his biggest rival AND toughest opponent

Hearns for me anyway, proved he was a better fighter than Leonard in the fight he lost to him.
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Old 08-07-2008, 12:49 PM   #48
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Default Re: Leonard says Hearns was his biggest rival AND toughest opponent

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Originally Posted by China_hand_Joe
Hearns for me anyway, proved he was a better fighter than Leonard in the fight he lost to him.
Thomas Hearns proved to me he was the superior boxer in his first fight with Ray Leonard. However, Boxing skills alone won't get you a win against a fight of Leonard's calibre. Whereas Hearns outboxed Leonard, Leonard outwilled Hearns, and shown a superior ability to take a punch, and proved to be the better fighter. That's key.

Hearns better Boxer, Leonard better fighter.
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Old 08-07-2008, 02:26 PM   #49
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Default Re: Leonard says Hearns was his biggest rival AND toughest opponent

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Originally Posted by Robbi
IMO if Leonard had contiuned fighting after the Finch fight he would more than likely have moved into the jr middleweight division sometime in 1983. Thats if the proposed Hagler fight at the time never materialised at middleweight. If Leonard never retired in 1982 the negotiations might well have favoured Leonard and Hagler to meet at 154lbs. This is all just pure guess work. A rematch with Hearns could well have came off earlier than it eventually did.
Hagler fought at 160 his entire career. What makes you think he could have made 154?
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Old 08-07-2008, 03:17 PM   #50
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Default Re: Leonard says Hearns was his biggest rival AND toughest opponent

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Hagler fought at 160 his entire career. What makes you think he could have made 154?
They were in negotiations for a fight in 1982 just before Leonard defended his title against Finch. I have the ITV version of the fight and the post fight interview with Leonard in his hotel room after the fight.

Leonard was a natural welterweight at that stage in his career, but was willing to face Hagler at jr middleweight. He said that he could not go all the way up the middleweight without sacrificing speed and natural power. He also stated that Hagler weighed only 157lbs for his fight with Hamsho in 1981, which is just 3lbs above the jr middleweight limit. Obviously Leonard was coming to the conclusion that if Hagler could make 157lbs, then surely he could make 154lbs. Hagler of course said the same thing. He said that weighing 154lbs was not possible without weakening himself and he too would be giving a lot away.

With my above post, I'm basically saying that possibly the fight could have came off at jr middleweight. Leonard did retire due to the detached retina and negotiations regarding a fight with Hagler might have changed had he continued fighting.
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Old 08-07-2008, 04:31 PM   #51
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Default Re: Leonard says Hearns was his biggest rival AND toughest opponent

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Originally Posted by selfkill
Thomas Hearns proved to me he was the superior boxer in his first fight with Ray Leonard. However, Boxing skills alone won't get you a win against a fight of Leonard's calibre. Whereas Hearns outboxed Leonard, Leonard outwilled Hearns, and shown a superior ability to take a punch, and proved to be the better fighter. That's key.

Hearns better Boxer, Leonard better fighter.
I very nearly used the word "boxer" instead of "fighter". I believe at least 50% of the time Hearns would make it to the finish.
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Old 08-07-2008, 04:34 PM   #52
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Default Re: Leonard says Hearns was his biggest rival AND toughest opponent

Boxers who are in shape year round, never balloon up and are unbelievably disciplined can usually cut surprising amounts of weight and be fine.

Look at a ancient Bernard Hopkin's almost coming in as a junior middleweight against Hoya.

He talked about dropping down to junior middle in the mid/early 90's to face Terry Norris. And he meant it.

Hopkin's is far taller than Hagler. Hagler definitely could of made junior middle if he wanted to.
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Old 08-07-2008, 05:34 PM   #53
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Default Re: Leonard says Hearns was his biggest rival AND toughest opponent

Sadly, I don't believe anything Ray Leonard says. He is always working some angle and he never comes clean.
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Old 08-07-2008, 06:50 PM   #54
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Default Re: Leonard says Hearns was his biggest rival AND toughest opponent

[quote=teeto]But Duran reaaly disnt allow Leonard room in the first bout. You might be right though. In both fights they recorded great wins over one another, i dont really think 2 much about the third one to be honest.

I do think that claiming fighting the wrong gameplan is a bit of an excuse personally, but maybe im biased. Also though, it must be said of Duran's excuse making in the return bout, you know about being underprepared? It may be true though that both excuses are valid? I just dont like excuses.



Claiming the wrong fight plan is the lamest ecuse of all. They fought for 60 minutes and he never adjusted? Give me a break. Its not about what style you fight its the combo faster,stronger,smarter, better fighter will win no matter what style he fights. Leonard was forced to be a slugger against Hearns and he won. Ali slugged it out against Foreman and won because he was the better fighter period.

Duran being out of shape for thr 2nd fight is not an excuse its a fact and even Leonard and his people have always admitted it. Leonard has said many times Duran had nothing in the 2nd fight. He said Duran was extremely strong in the first fight and very weak in the 2nd fight. There is no doubt this is true watching the fight. What we have is in the first fight an in shape sharp Duran beat an in shape sharp Leonard period. In the 2nd fight an in sharp sharp Leonard beat an out of shape sluglish Duran. This is a fact that is supported by everyone who was invlolved in the fight.

I personally think that Leonard of the first fight was better then Leonard of the second fight. Leonard in the 2nd fight was having trouble outpointing a very weak Duran. Leonard sure didn't prove in the 2nd fight that he could have beaten Duran of June 1980. I look at the facts not try to figure out whats fair.
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Old 08-07-2008, 07:09 PM   #55
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Default Re: Leonard says Hearns was his biggest rival AND toughest opponent

For their welterweight showdown, Hearns was literally Leonard's biggest opponent, with the most ominous aura of all his foes. He was serious, tough, and tremendously talented, an amazing package of murderous power and polished boxing skills. But Leonard overcame Hearns, in one of history's very few clashes of two greats in their prime.

Yet in Montreal, Leonard was defeated by a small, past-his-best, but superhuman, fighting machine in Roberto Duran, no excuses. So, to me, Duran in Montreal was Leonard's toughest opponent.
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Old 08-07-2008, 09:15 PM   #56
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Default Re: Leonard says Hearns was his biggest rival AND toughest opponent

Quote:
Originally Posted by Robbi
They were in negotiations for a fight in 1982 just before Leonard defended his title against Finch. I have the ITV version of the fight and the post fight interview with Leonard in his hotel room after the fight.

Leonard was a natural welterweight at that stage in his career, but was willing to face Hagler at jr middleweight. He said that he could not go all the way up the middleweight without sacrificing speed and natural power. He also stated that Hagler weighed only 157lbs for his fight with Hamsho in 1981, which is just 3lbs above the jr middleweight limit. Obviously Leonard was coming to the conclusion that if Hagler could make 157lbs, then surely he could make 154lbs. Hagler of course said the same thing. He said that weighing 154lbs was not possible without weakening himself and he too would be giving a lot away.

With my above post, I'm basically saying that possibly the fight could have came off at jr middleweight. Leonard did retire due to the detached retina and negotiations regarding a fight with Hagler might have changed had he continued fighting.
that's a new one on me. i never heard that the hagler people considered going to 154 for leonard. when leonard fought larry bonds in syracuse in march 1981 his attorney, mike trainer, invited manny steward and steve wainwright (hagler's attorney) to come in and negotiate. wainwright demanded parity for a leonard fight, while steward was willing to accept less than leonard. that's how hearns got the 1981 bout - (maybe trainer was using wainwright to gain leverage on steward) - but as far as i recall nobody mentioned hagler dropping to 154 during that period. nor do i remember it coming up before leonard's 'retirement' gala at the Baltimore Civic Center, November 1982, with Hagler at ringside, awaiting what he thought would be Leonard's announcement of their bout.

Marvin probably could have made 154 - he was 157 1/2 against Duran - but he would have refused to do so on principle. He was too old school - too firmly established in his identity as a middleweight.
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Old 08-07-2008, 09:19 PM   #57
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Default Re: Leonard says Hearns was his biggest rival AND toughest opponent

Id always fancy Leonard to beat Hearns in a rematch if SRL never retired.
Tommy could come in with whatever strategy he wanted but the real bottom line is that Leonard CAN & WOULD hurt him badly at some point & I dont see Tommy stunning SRL quite as severe, SRL was the tougher fighter, had an edge mentally & was decisively stronger in the championship rds, SRL had that little extra something that the ultimate legends have, that inner strength, that will to dig deep & prevail. Tommy was a legend too but fell just short of SRL IMHO.

Ps. The SRL of the 2nd Duran fight beats Duran of montreal by close UD.
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Old 08-07-2008, 09:36 PM   #58
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Default Re: Leonard says Hearns was his biggest rival AND toughest opponent

Hagler was never going to fight Leonard at a catchweight, it was all part of the windup toward the superfight at the time.
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Old 08-07-2008, 10:01 PM   #59
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Default Re: Leonard says Hearns was his biggest rival AND toughest opponent

Quote:
Originally Posted by SorceryatCaesar
that's a new one on me. i never heard that the hagler people considered going to 154 for leonard.
I never said that. Read my post again. Hagler indeed wanted the fight at middleweight. As I stated in my post.
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Old 08-07-2008, 11:00 PM   #60
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Default Re: Leonard says Hearns was his biggest rival AND toughest opponent

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Originally Posted by Bill Butcher
Id always fancy Leonard to beat Hearns in a rematch if SRL never retired.
Tommy could come in with whatever strategy he wanted but the real bottom line is that Leonard CAN & WOULD hurt him badly at some point & I dont see Tommy stunning SRL quite as severe, SRL was the tougher fighter, had an edge mentally & was decisively stronger in the championship rds, SRL had that little extra something that the ultimate legends have, that inner strength, that will to dig deep & prevail. Tommy was a legend too but fell just short of SRL IMHO.

Ps. The SRL of the 2nd Duran fight beats Duran of montreal by close UD.
The funny thing about Leonard and Hearns was that Leonard really did'nt want to fight Hearns again until later on when he thought the Hit Man was washed up He knew the risk
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