80's foreman vs prime tyson

Discussion in 'Classic Boxing Forum' started by bbox71, Sep 1, 2019.



  1. Golden_Feather99

    Golden_Feather99 Member Full Member

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    Ok. I get what you're saying. The fact that Douglas and Holyfield failed to reach those heights again, it puts Tyson in a bad light. That's a good point. Your point on Douglas being inconsistent is also a good one. Although I disagree, partially. Douglas was inconsistent. But it's a bit different. Having ups and downs as a contender is pretty normal imo. You lose some, you win some. That's the story of most contenders. That's different from a champion like Holyfield. Douglas never showed he could beat someone like Tyson. Even with his inconsistent efforts, his peak was Greg Page or Trevor Berbick. Neither fighter was in their prime. Even if they were, they were still levels below Tyson. And Douglas had his **** together leading up to the Tyson fight. He had beaten Williams, Berbick, and McCall in his last 3 fights. That's 3 solid wins for any contender. None of these fights were close. Most importantly, Douglas was written off against an undefeated, active Tyson.


    Holyfield destroyed the guy that dethroned Tyson. Holyfield beat Bowe, Foreman, Mercer, Holmes. I know he went 1-2 against Bowe. I wouldn't consider that a blemish since Bowe was huge and in his prime. But Holyfield was inconsistent. Not like Douglas. Holyfield never lost to a Mike White or a Jesse Ferguson. He just had tough fights against guys he should've dominated or beaten with relative ease. That's what I meant by inconsistent. Douglas wasn't levels above Ferguson (at the time) or Tucker. These fights being tough for Douglas doesn't really mean anything. Anyways, once Evander started declining, some of those tough/competitive fights starting turning into losses. Even though he wasn't fit against Bowe (III) or Moorer (I), he still gave them hell.


    Let's turn the tables now. What had Tyson done in the previous 5 years? And what did Tyson do after he lost to Holyfield? Tyson fought Holyfield 5 years and 4 months after he fought Ruddock (his last real fight). During that period, Tyson boxed a total of 6 rounds. Holyfield boxed 90. Tyson had a 4 year layoff, Holyfield had a 1 year layoff. Tyson beat Bruno and Seldon. Although these names look nice on paper, Tyson would never struggle against these guys. Tyson was the opposite of Holyfield. When Holyfield could look less than stellar against inferior opposition, Tyson crushed these guys in style. Tyson didn't look "good" in any of his comeback fights but the fact that he ended these fights so quickly made people believe he was back and better than before lol.


    But here's what bothers me (forget the odds, the predictions, and the hype)- why does Tyson's loss to Holyfield hurt his legacy? Why does it look bad on him? He fought Holyfield and lost. Had he beaten Holyfield, it would be Holmes all over again. "Tyson beats another old man". That's the truth. The way the odds looked and reading these "expert" predictions, Tyson was supposed to crush this guy. But Holyfield looked better than Tyson on fight night. We have the privilege of hindsight and we can say that people underestimated Holyfield and overestimated Tyson. Just a friendly reminder- odds were even and critics were divided leading up to Holmes-Ali. Doesn't mean it was supposed to be competitive. People were simply misled. Holyfield almost beat Lewis 3 years after the Tyson fight. I know he still lost but still, it bothers me when people claim that Tyson couldn't beat a "washed up" Holyfield.


    Last point. I think Holyfield was both a) sharpened through competitive fights against quality opposition b) worn out due to the wars he engaged in. But, something that is seen in most worn out fighters- deteriorated chin/punch resistance. Holyfield didn't show that imo. I know I sound biased but I don't believe Holyfield was stopped by Bowe because his chin was gone. He took Mercer's best punches, then Tyson's and then 3 years later he took Lewis' best punches over 24 rounds, without getting wobbled a single time. I also think Holyfield's performance against Moorer is being undersold. He destroyed Moorer (after the first couple of rounds I think). If they were both shot, it shouldn't have been that one sided. And Evander gave Lewis hell when no one else could. I think Evander adjusted better with age/decline than Tyson did. Evander had bad stamina later on and he learned to fight in spurts and conserve energy. He lost some speed/quickness but he stopped relying on his athleticism and durability. He showed a more intelligent side, he showed composure and ability to stick with a gameplan. That's all. I've got a simple point. Holyfield beating Tyson in '96 shouldn't be seen as Tyson getting "exposed" or Holyfield having Tyson's number. They were both great fighters at their best but Tyson never really returned to the ring. I'm sure Tyson being a convicted rapist and spending 3 years of his prime in a penitentiary had an affect on him, psychologically. Sounds like an excuse. I give Holyfield his credit, he beat Tyson when no one thought he could. But those fights shouldn't be called "legacy fights". They weren't. IMO, Holyfield's legacy is attached to Bowe fights more than Tyson/Lewis and Tyson's to his dominant reign pre-Douglas.
     
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  2. Sangria

    Sangria You bleed like Mylee Full Member

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    Tyson Hater. So any logical conversation with you regarding Mike Tyson is null and void. I'm not even reading your novel, but I know that Tyson pre prison destroys Foreman and outslugs Holyfield in a firefight for the ages.

    Peace my ninja.
     
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  3. young griffo

    young griffo Boxing Addict Full Member

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    All the best to you my man.
     
  4. RulesMakeItInteresting

    RulesMakeItInteresting Well-Known Member Full Member

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    I agree Mike stops George pre-90s. Not so much around the time the latter fought Holyfield. In fact, I daresay the Holyfield/George stops Mike within 8.

    I also think Holy (say, the time of his first fight with Bowe) would have stopped Mike, probably sooner than Douglas. Holy just had the right style, and would have been matador to Mike's bull. It would have been the fight that most boxing scribes erroneously attributed to Michael Spinks (and looked terrible afterward for having thought so), except Holy was a far better heavyweight than Spinks all around.

    Holy would have made Tillis and Douglas' efforts against Mike look pretty average. I just can't see Mike taking him in both of their primes.
     
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  5. RulesMakeItInteresting

    RulesMakeItInteresting Well-Known Member Full Member

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    Mike in the 80s seemed practically invulnerable...until he fought Tillis. In my eyes the Tillis fight went a long way in verifying that the Holmes Mike beat in 88 wasn't anywhere near the great LH (even Mike admitted that).

    You're right, there's nothing I can see that portended the Douglas ko, and I was just as gobsmacked as anyone when it happened. Douglas was yet another, further proof that Mike couldn't beat fighters who knew how to move and tie him up...regardless of when they showed up on his record.

    Holy was especially dangerous in his prime because he would have been far more active and deft before his kayo loss to Bowe. He had that amazing way of darting in and out...Mike would have been bumming at any age.

    I'd honestly love to hear people's counter arguments against a prime Holy beating (probably stopping within 4 rounds) Mike. Mike knew nothing other than coming in, coming in...Holy always LOVED guys like that, partly because they had trouble hitting him (especially early). And when it came to prime Mike not being able to hit someone, he always started sucking when that happened...often quite badly. As soon as Mike went into slow down/suck mode, it's over. Holy was just too active.
     
  6. young griffo

    young griffo Boxing Addict Full Member

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    I actually think prime Foreman beats Tyson but not comeback George. But I don't see Foreman getting blasted out either. The guy was too big, brave, tough, strong and stubborn to be blasted out by anyone in my view and its just wishful thinking for people to think Tyson (or anyone for that matter) walks through any incarnation of GF.

    I was on the wind up with our mate Sangria earlier just because he's such a myopic Tyson worshipper.

    My view of Tyson is that he was the best early rounds fighter in heavyweight history (with the possible exceptions of Louis and Dempsey) who was also skilled and athletically gifted.

    But a genuine hardarse like EH was always a tough ask for Tyson because his chin was granite, his skills were elite and his will to win was simply insane. His attributes negated Tysons in my view.

    Anyway we're talking some of the best heavyweights if the modern era and there really isn't that much shame in one losing to the other at the end of the day.
     
  7. RulesMakeItInteresting

    RulesMakeItInteresting Well-Known Member Full Member

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    I meant the late 80s, first-coming-back George.

    70s George kicks the crap out of Mike, setting him up with the hook and knocking him cold with the uppercut (no mouthpiece grabbing) in two at the latest.

    Holy-era George beats a prime Mike within 8 (perhaps receiving a kd himself within that time), but knocks post-prison Mike out in 5.
     
  8. RulesMakeItInteresting

    RulesMakeItInteresting Well-Known Member Full Member

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    I think these are all great points...though I'm biased because I totally agree with all of them.

    It's true, Mike was a great heavyweight and there would not be a great shame if he lost to Foreman...a lot of people I knew completely predicted Mike would lose that fight anyway.
     
  9. Glass City Cobra

    Glass City Cobra Well-Known Member Full Member

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    The fact Douglas was a contender who had his ups and downs, that his best wins were over guys who were past their prime, that he was written off and 6 years older than mike and did nothing afterwards just proves my point. If a guy like that could beat the vicious, "prime" Mike Tyson what does that say about how beatable mike was in reality? It doesnt look good if 2 has beens in foreman and holmes come out of retirement to fight you or guys brazenly moving up from light heavy and cruiser.

    What does that say about the era of he was the dominant beast ruling with an iron fist (pun intended)...? People call Max Baer's era "weak"bsince a contender who spent more time losing and working at factories like Braddock shocked the world and beat him. The 50's were weak because a bunch of 38 year old shopworn men passed the title back and forth until marciano showed up. They call the klitschko era weak since inconsistent contenders like sanders, Byrd, etc were able to score shocking upsets. Why is mike's era handled with kid gloves?

    Im not saying mike's era was weak, just something to think about.

    -He beat an out of shape unmotivated version of the guy who beat Tyson. And even if we overlooked this it was several years of wars/sparring/mileage before him and tyson fought.

    -going 1-2 against Bowe does look bad considering he lost the last one and got brutally kod! Just like pacquiao having more wins than marquez and then losing in the most devaststing way for the final bout. It's why people struggle to give mayweather credit.

    -holyfield lost 2 of his last 6 prior to the tyson fights. He looked horrible in both those fights. Granted, they werent buster douglas level opponents but considering how competitive he was with Bowe in the last 2 and that moore was a light heavy who would go on to get splattered by foreman, tua, and holyfield himself it makes his prior losses and over all conditioning that much worse.

    Tyson won 2 of the major belts when he came back. True, he had beaten one of those guys before but he was still a champion.

    You can't penalize tyson for making it look easy and then use that as ammunition to prove he wasn't in good form! You have a point about him lacking as much activity as holyfield but as ive mentioned, holyfield wasnt enjoying some long glorious Joe Louis type of reign whole tyson was in prison. He was getting his ass kicked a lot of times, barely getting past contenders and, abd adding more miles to the clock.

    Because holyfield was the "real deal" and the only other hall of famer available besides Lewis. If you fail to beat the best fighter of your era and people are worshiping the ground you spit on, then yes it does hurt your legacy. Had Frazier lost to Ali he would be dismissed as merely a "good fighter" and mentioned alongside champions like Johanson or jack sharkey and not raved about.

    I think the opppsite is true: Had Tyson beaten Douglas and then holyfield, be likely would be dismissed as just another cruiserweight who couldn't move up. But his legendary fights with Bowe, ironically the 1st one where he lost, he received a standing ovation and thats when people took him very seriously. Tyson would be validated by beating this awesome tough fighter after being in prison for years. We could overlook the douglas loss as a fluke. He'd be the only man to become undisputed twice and would have done so at a mere 5'10 and only 30 years old. That's some serious legacy stuff.

    Instead, he lost not once, but twice--all made worse by the first fight being by knockout and the 2nd one his own doing via egregious fouls talked about 20 years later. Again I'll use frazier vs Ali. If Ali lost their 2nd fight because he decided to elbow Frazier in the face or kick him in the nuts, the reporters would have eaten him alive. A lot of people were already rubbed the wrong way because of his brash trash talk. Had he gone 0-2 against the best guy available after calling himself the greatest he'd be a laughing stock.
     
  10. Glass City Cobra

    Glass City Cobra Well-Known Member Full Member

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    If you dont think holyfield was that worn out or that all those wars took a lot out of him, then the only logical conclusion is that he was simply on another level compared to Tyson. You said it yourself Tyson had only fought 6 rounds in 4 years and didnt have a lot of wear and tear. He was the younger man and had more natural talent. Holyfield simply wanted it more and had more work ethic depsite all the ups and downs.

    The more angles you look at it, the more you start questioning Tyson's heart. Thise absolutely were legacy fights, it wasnt just the belts, it was to decide who was the baddest man on the planet. Holyfield was the man who beat the man and Tyson had been in exile leaving a lot of questions about who was the true king. They were the 2 best fighters in the world and all 3 belts were on the line. The stakes do not get higher than that.
     
  11. Golden_Feather99

    Golden_Feather99 Member Full Member

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    Douglas beating Tyson doesn't negate the fact that Tyson unified the division and made 6 title defences as the undisputed champion. His era wasn't weak by any means. Baer, Walcott, Charles weren't dominant champions like Tyson. Wlad was closer to Tyson in terms of dominance. Wlad was defending his titles against Wach, Leapai, Thompson, Austin, Pianeta, and washed up Mormeck, Rahman. His era really was weak. The worthy challengers like Povetkin/Haye/Ibragimov were simply too small. Baer's era was weak because Primo Carnera was able to become the undisputed HW champion and make 2 title defences. Charles/Walcott era was weak because there weren't many worthy challengers so they ended up fighting each other 4 times. The ghost of Joe Louis became the #1 contender in that era. That's a weak era. Foreman and Holmes couldn't do that during Tyson's reign. Douglas won the HW title and you might try and compare him to Primo but it's not the same. Primo was a top 5 HW for almost 7 consecutive years. That's a weak era. Douglas made top 10 just twice during his career and never went higher than #7.

    We can also say the same for Holyfield's era though. He won the titles from Douglas and defended against Foreman/Holmes who were in their 40s and Bert Cooper, a journeyman. What does that say about his era? Because that's Holyfield's entire reign. Holmes came out of retirement and he was sent back into retirement by Tyson. He made another comeback in the 90s and he said the reason he came back is because the fighters weren't as good as the 80s. He came back and stayed because he was able to hold his own against everyone he fought in the 90s (Mercer, Holyfield, McCall).

    Disagree. Bowe had every physical advantage over Holyfield- height, reach, weight. Bowe was about 30 lbs heavier than Holyfield in all 3 fights. Pacquiao-Marquez were the same size. The reason people struggle to give Floyd credit is because he hadn't declined the way Pacquiao had and he was naturally bigger than Pacquiao. And Floyd didn't spend 4 years away from the sport. He was fighting the likes of Cotto, Canelo, Maidana while Pacquiao fought Bradley, Algeiri, and Rios after the Marquez KO.

    I agree that he didn't look good against Moorer and Bowe. But how come he looked good against Tyson? Is Tyson that much worse than Moorer and a washed up Bowe? Or maybe Holyfield wasn't as washed up as everyone thought he was. He did have an excuse for both those fights. He did look 'off' in those fights. Would you agree with that? How did Holyfield dominate Moorer in the rematch? That was 3½ years after the first fight. If Holyfield looked horrible the first time around, he shouldn't be able to destroy Moorer years later considered Moorer was 5 years younger than Evander. I'm trying to use hindsight here. I get it, Evander didn't look good going into the Tyson fight. But he looked good against Tyson. Tyson was the one who looked rusty and out of his depth. I can't watch that fight and think Holyfield looks a shell of his former self. I see that in Tyson. Tyson was 5'10, if you take away his skillset, he isn't left with much. He's a short guy with a big punch. And we saw how Holyfield nullified his predictable offence. Stepping into the ring with world-class fighters keeps you sharp. I think we can agree on that. Coming up short against world-class fighters would indicate decline (in Evander's case). But not boxing at all for 4 years is much more detrimental IMO.

    Wear and tear didn't affect Evander's performance against Tyson. Holyfield never looked hurt from any punch. He didn't look like he was gonna pass out of exhaustion. He looked great to me considering the wear and tear. Manny Pacquiao is someone you brought up earlier. How many wars has he been in? When he got KO'd by Marquez, they said the wars had finally caught up to him. He didn't have a heart condition, he wasn't fighting with an infection. But it's been 7 years and he hasn't been dropped since. Also remember that Pacquiao arguably lost to Jeff Horn. And he just beat Thurman who was coming off a 2 year layoff. Despite those poor performances, despite being 40, despite being a career long brawler, he looked amazing against Thurman. He took big shots and despite being the smaller man, he was never hurt. So yea, Holyfield looked bad against Moorer/Bowe but it doesn't mean he was finished. He clearly wasn't as he showed against Tyson. He showed it against Moorer in the rematch. And he showed he could still compete at the highest level against Lewis.

    Fair enough. How did Tyson look against Savarese and Golota? Tyson fought Savarese 4 years after Holyfield (I) and stopped him in 38 seconds. Foreman and Grant went the distance against Savarese, Douglas couldn't even make it out of the first round. Tyson was 37 and he KO'd Etienne in 49 seconds. Etienne was decent (compared to post-Lewis Tyson). As I said before, Tyson destroyed inferior opponents with ease. He was even destroying Williams/McBride until he wasn't. It doesn't mean he was in good form again. Holyfield was in tough fights all the time. It doesn't mean he was washed up. I know those fights took a toll on him but his performances against Tyson/Moorer aren't that of a washed up fighter.
     
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  12. Golden_Feather99

    Golden_Feather99 Member Full Member

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    Maybe. But considering the 25-1 odds and the ridiculous expectations (Tyson was supposed to wreck Evander), I can't see Tyson receiving much credit. And Ali-Frazier isn't really a good comparison imo. Ali was still regarded highly because he never lost his title. And he beat 2/3 best HWs in world before he fought Frazier (Frazier, Quarry, Bonavena). Frazier was also undefeated. The odds were almost even for that fight. Some had Frazier a slight favourite, others had Ali. The only thing Ali and Tyson had in common, they were both coming off a layoff. Tyson spent his layoff in a cell, Ali didn't. You brought up the foul. Holyfield kept butting Tyson without any repercussions. So Tyson bit him. If anything, Frazier is the one who should've bit Ali because Ali kept using that illegal necktie without any consequences.

    Frazier-Ali was indeed a legacy fight. Before fighting Frazier, Ali showed skills, stamina, and heart against Bonavena. He answered a lot of questions in that fight. After losing to Frazier, Ali went on to win a lot of big fights. Ali made Frazier's win look great by achieving what he achieved in the 70s. Had he retired, it would leave a lot of question marks. On the other hand, Holyfield was considered 'shot' and Tyson was coming off a 4 year layoff. Tyson's comeback fights were similar to Ali-Quarry, they didn't answer any questions.

    I do think those wars took a lot out of Holyfield. But not the way most see it. I don't see how anyone can sell Holyfield as the more washed up fighter here. A washed up fighter who still possesses a granite chin and doesn't show deterioration in skills department. Somehow he has gotten stronger despite the wear and tear and he's punching harder than ever. Tyson had boxed 6 rounds in over 5 years. There's a fine line between wear & tear and ring rust. You can't possibly sell his layoff as an advantage. Tyson didn't box for 4 years. It doesn't matter how much natural talent he had, he was nowhere near as good as he used to be. Holyfield was still able to compete with a prime Lennox Lewis 3 years later. That can't be overlooked. I don't understand how a worn out fighter could perform the way Evander did years after the Tyson fight. Holyfield destroyed Moorer after the Tyson fights. What did Tyson go on to do?


    This isn't true. Only 1 belt was on the line. The WBA belt. They weren't the 2 best fighters in the world. They weren't even the 2 best HWs in the world. Bowe and Lewis were rated above both. Moorer was rated above Holyfield (since he held a title). These weren't legacy fights. They were money fights. That's the truth. Neither fighter was in their prime. Tyson was the cashcow and a Holyfield fight brought the most money. That's the truth. If Tyson was really worried about legacy, he wouldn't have offered Lewis step aside money. He would've fought Lewis and kept that WBC title. Why go for Holyfield who has been beaten, considered 'shot', and holds no titles? Because it brought a lot more money than a fight against Bowe/Lewis. Holyfield was the biggest draw next to Tyson. How could it be a legacy fight if one fighter is considered broken and considered unfit to fight not too long ago and the other one is coming off a 4 year layoff. What makes this a legacy fight? You said that Evander didn't accomplish much after the Tyson fights. That even though he fought well against Lewis, he still went 0-1-1. I said that Tyson didn't accomplish anything either. If they were both finished, how was this a legacy fight?
     
  13. InMemoryofJakeLamotta

    InMemoryofJakeLamotta Boxing Addict Full Member

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    Only Melio Betina beats prime Tyson
     
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  14. Sangria

    Sangria You bleed like Mylee Full Member

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    Tyson fought Tillis in his first year as a pro. Tillis didn't solve him nor did he have the "style" to beat Mike. I could say Tyson had his longest layoff to that point because of an ear infection, but instead I believe Tillis trained like a demon because he was facing a young dynamo who was destroying his opposition and Tillis needed to be at his absolute best. Even at this early stage of Tyson's career a victory over him would catapult Tillis to stardom and big money, even moreso than winning a belt. Even though Tyson didn't knock Tillis out, he beat him on points 8-2 or 7-3. And if Tyson hadn't beaten anyone over the distance you'd say he couldn't do it and hold that against him too.

    Douglas didn't have anything Tyson hadn't seen before. Green moved and tied Tyson up. So did Ribalta, Bonecrusher, Thomas, Tucker, Biggs, Holmes, Tubbs to name a few mobile boxers. All they did was move around the ring and tie Tyson up. They landed their fair share on offense too. Difference here is Tyson made them pay when they opened up on offense and was better prepared against the aforementioned. Douglas was successful because Tyson wasn't doing the things we saw him doing up to the Spinks fight. Carl Williams was certainly better than Douglas, beat guys that Douglas lost to, was ranked higher and had only lost a split verdict to Holmes and the upset to Mike Weaver's left hook (The Truth's kryptonite). Kudos to Douglas for stepping up and taking hold of the opportunity at hand. Unfortunately he ran from the rematch, so we can't blame Tyson for that one.

    Prime Holyfield was always on his toes, bouncing around with a tremendous work rate. But stopping Mike Tyson within 4 rounds is a branch you'll he hangin on all by yourself. He couldn't stop Cooper in 4. Holyfield loved guys coming in because he always tried to outslug them: Dokes, Stewart, Foreman, Cooper...Holyfield was getting hit and quite often in those fights. It's the reason why most predicted a 1991 Tyson would KO Holyfield within 8. Would Holyfield all of a sudden change his style for Tyson? Maybe, but '91 Mike still had some speed and wasn't as static as the post prison sham. He didn't spend 3 years locked up and 4 years away from the ring. He had 2 wars with Ruddock and I'm sure he wouldn't be taking prime undefeated Holyfield lightly. Mike wanted those belts and even went behind King's back to accept a lesser purse.

    If Holyfield implemented the same strategy as their actual '96 fight, he wouldn't have the valuable experience he gained from fighting Holmes, Bowe, Stewart, Bowe again, Moorer, Mercer and Bowe once more, while Tyson was inactive and rotting in the clink. Would he be strong enough in the clinches to outmaneuver pre prison Tyson? Would he be patient and savvy enough by avoiding a back and forth slugfest? Would he butt Tyson coming in to stop Tyson's offense? Would Tyson complain or butt Holyfield right back?
     
    Last edited: Sep 6, 2019
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  15. RulesMakeItInteresting

    RulesMakeItInteresting Well-Known Member Full Member

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    No shame in ANYONE losing to a prime Bowe (first and second fight specifically, I'm one of those people whom think Holy never really beat Bowe). Bowe in his prime was right up there with Mike imo...except Riddick's prime was even shorter than Mike's.

    That said, I think Bowe would have creamed Mike in any incarnation except for the Bowe who showed up for Golota.

    In a way, Holy's first losing to Bowe was about as shameful as Ali losing to Frazier (despite such a different context). In other words, it wasn't at all. Both were the best then (I don't put Lewis near those two at that point in time).

    Just my opinion.