ATG: How Important is the Number of Fights?

Discussion in 'Classic Boxing Forum' started by Gudetama, May 17, 2019.



  1. Gudetama

    Gudetama Active Member Full Member

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    Some initial statements: (i) Obviously I understand that the number of fights per boxer has, on average, decreased if we compare many of today's fighters with older ones. (ii) I also know that numbers don't tell us the whole story, as each competitor is completely different - largely due to the ultimate number one factor: quality of wins. (iii) I like lists :)
    But my question is simple, and broken down into three parts:
    1) Is there a cut-off at which you would say, 'That's not enough bouts to be considered a true all time great'?
    2) To what degree should the number of fights during prime years be factored in, when ranking?
    3) How realistic is the possibility that greater number of fights during prime years (as opposed to 'going on to long') may detract, due to opposition available?
    Thank you.
     
  2. Gudetama

    Gudetama Active Member Full Member

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    This query was really inspired by my problems ranking three fighters on my ATG P4P list: Sugar Ray Leonard, Sandy Saddler, Jimmy Wilde. I rate them roughly equally as fighters, based on what I have seen/read (a whole new can of worms)... so should 'number of fights' become a factor?
    (Yes, I know... I am a very sad individual!)
     
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  3. BitPlayerVesti

    BitPlayerVesti Will research for food Full Member

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    No, but but having less fights will mean less top wins and overall achievements, and generally worse longevity. But they certainly can quailify, it generally means a lot more ambiguity.

    I don't have a problem calling an oldie like Jimmy Britt or a modern boxer like Loma an ATG.

    With Wilde it's even more complex as his record is almost certainly incomplete, this is worth a read
    This content is protected
     
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  4. richdanahuff

    richdanahuff Well-Known Member Full Member

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    There are factors to consider for ATG fighter #1 being proven durability but longevity is not IMO required for clearcut ATG status....some fighters ATG'ness is linked to their consistency over time and volume as IMO their subtle genius is not clear until they have demonstrated it over and over against every conceivable style then they are accepted as the adaptable ATG fighter...these fighters typically rise slowly throughout their careers.....then you have the ultra talented capable full package fighters that dominate early, rise fast, prove themselves against the best available and retire early....such as SRL and soon Lomanchenko
     
  5. Mendoza

    Mendoza Hrgovic = Next Heavyweight champion of the world. Full Member

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    The number of quality opponents and what the boxer does as champion matters most.
     
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  6. salsanchezfan

    salsanchezfan Boxing Junkie Full Member

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    Who's greater, Pernell Whitaker or Young Stribling?
     
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  7. Balder

    Balder Well-Known Member Full Member

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    For an ATG, longevity is pretty important to me. Sustained greatness over several periods and challenges shows how tremendously talented a fighter is. SRR, Duran, Pep, Ali, Foreman, Paquio, Louis, Klitschko Long careers, second careers, and cross generation shows just how great these fighters are.

    Short time greats are very common.
     
  8. Gudetama

    Gudetama Active Member Full Member

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    Thank you for your informed responses. But, although they usually go hand in hand, longevity is certainly not always the same as the number of fights. For example, there were probably at least 20 years between SRL's earliest and final fights. Yet he only fought 40 times in total.
    I'm specifically referring to the significance of the number of fights (particularly during prime years).
     
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  9. PernellSweetPea

    PernellSweetPea Boxing Junkie Full Member

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    Not too important. I don't think a great fighter can have 20 fights, but if he won the title with 15 fights and has 35, that can do it if he fought a lot of good fighters. Then you have guys who have 100 like Campas who were not great.
     
  10. Balder

    Balder Well-Known Member Full Member

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    The problem with guys with only 35 fights is that everyone can say it was weak era. I have heard this quite often, and it is hard to argue against it due to the lack of fights.

    I hear ya'll. But , having only 35 fights leaves to many questions for me.
     
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  11. Bukkake

    Bukkake Boxing Addict Full Member

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    It's a case by case study. I don't think, we can have a set limit (like, say, 35 pro fights), where we agree, that someone with less than that number, can not be called an ATG fighter.

    Lomachenko, Usyk and Inoue have all had less than 20 pro fights, so far. Let's say, they continue their respective careers in spectacular fashion, adding another 15 world title fights to their resume - and then retire undefeated in about 5 years time. Surely, they will by then have done enough to be called ATGs?
     
  12. thistle1

    thistle1 Boxing Addict Full Member

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    Number of fights is definitely an important and deciding factor,
    so too long careers, if they are still fighting Top Opponents right through to the end of a career...

    I always say Roy Jones Jr. IS the Best Example of this when comparing past Top fighters to modern Top fighters.

    no question Roy was a talent and then a dominant one, then a questionable one, then a proven not as good as first thought one (same with loads of fighters. but Overall though still a great!

    So 'IF' Roy had Dozen's of fights leading up to his Prime and then Dozens More at his Peak against REGULAR TOP OPPONENTS, would a 'few' Tarvers have come along a lot sooner???

    I say YES, YES and of course they would have...
    Regular TOP & Noted Opponents Times Dozens of Fights, is going to eliminate you from the best, level you out as one of them or excel you to the elite among them.

    it shouldn't even be a question it is a simple equation unfolding in life and a career.

    Greats like Lloyd Marshall (Roy before Roy), PROVES he is Among the top greats, but not the greatest ever.

    I believe Jones, like so many other modern greats, would have suffered quite a few loses, both respectable ones and a few telling ones as well, with Many, Many More Top Contests participated in.
     
    Last edited: May 18, 2019
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  13. Bukkake

    Bukkake Boxing Addict Full Member

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    You talk a lot about Roy Jones in this post, and say that overall he's a great fighter, but hesitate to call him an ATG. So, in your opinion... is he an ATG or just a great?
     
  14. Jackomano

    Jackomano Boxing Addict Full Member

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    This. The number of fights a fighter has isn’t everything, but a fighter also can’t really master their craft if they don’t get enough fights under their belts or fight consistently enough. By having more fights a fighter has the potential to showcase their skill set against different styles.

    I remember in some television interview Foreman was giving that he credited his ring activity and ring experience as much as his physicality for being able to overcome Frazier and then later recapture the title. He emphasized how everyone wants to do everything fast, but to be the best you can at something takes time.
     
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  15. Balder

    Balder Well-Known Member Full Member

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    This is a really great post.
     

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