Larry Holmes, The Thread.

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


Who Beats a Prime Larry Holmes?

  1. Muhammad Ali

    76.0%
  2. Joe Louis

    32.0%
  3. Lennox Lewis

    40.0%
  4. Rocky Marciano

    8.0%
  5. George Foreman

    32.0%
  6. Joe Frazier

    56.0%
  7. Sonny Liston

    20.0%
  8. Mike Tyson

    44.0%
  9. None of the Above

    8.0%
  10. Other (state who)

    16.0%
Multiple votes are allowed.
  1. George Crowcroft

    George Crowcroft Youngest Ezzard Charles Fan Ever Full Member

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    Been a while since the last one but I'm back with a fan favourite. Larry Holmes, The Easton Assassin himself.
    Same as usual, an analysis of his skills, an appreciation thread and a line up of guys for him to match against. But for Larry who seems to be quite polarising, a personal opinion and why I think some people don't give him the respect he deserves.

    Larry Holmes. 69(44)-6(1)

    Larry Holmes went 48-0 to begin with in his legendary title reign. He would beat top contender, and murderous puncher Ernie Shavers, this would get him his title shot against WBC champ Ken Norton.

    During his long and stellar career, he beat

    • Earnie Shavers twice
    • Ken Norton
    • Mike Weaver twice
    • Muhammad Ali
    • Trevor Berbick
    • Leon Spinks
    • Renaldo Snipes
    • Gerry Cooney
    • Randall Cobb
    • Tim Witherspoon
    • James Smith twice
    • Carl Williams
    • Ray Mercer

    He amassed 20 title defences, or 19 if you don't count Frazier. He had arguably the greatest jab at HW of all time. Definitely top 3. He had one of the biggest hearts of all time and faced the best. He never backed down from a challenge and was an absolutely fine HW in his heyday.
    I've watched his fights against
    (Note - Scorecards below)
    • M.Spinks 2
    • Shavers, 1&2
    • Norton
    • Witherspoon
    • Williams
    • Mercer
    • Ali
    • Cooney
    • Cobb
    In these fights he showed an outstanding jab, a true left menace. He showed a very nice left hook, upstairs and down. His right hand had excellent timing and could pop over his opponents jab, having different levels of power.
    His uppercuts to the body were vicious, and definitely took alot out of people. He was savvy defensively but not very flashy, he'd make subtle changes to stop punches that were giving him trouble. For example against Cooney he moved to the right whilst popping his jab and stiff armed with his right to nullify Cooney's left hook.
    Whilst against Shavers he moved to the left
    The punch he is known for, and by far his best, was his jab. It was vicious, it could tear through someone's face and keep them at distance. He also, when he felt he was losing, put much more effort into his jab. You could see the snap in it and that he was trying harder on his face. It was something to watch.
    An issue Holmes had was being hit by Overhands, he took some hard ones of Mercer, Shavers, Cooney and Norton. But he managed to stay composed for all of them and win the fights.

    His footwork at his best was textbook but brilliantly effective. It was noticeably quicker than someone like Lewis, whilst Noticeably slower than someone like Ali.
    The Mercer fight really showed his bag of tricks, beating a prime guy like him who at his best was a real nightmare for a lot of guys, he managed to beat him wide on cards.
    He had a good offence that was creative and effective, it wasn't as explosive as a prime Iron Mike or Joe Louis, but it was more thudding and blunt than Ali's. Whilst Ali was quicker, he wasn't as powerful imo as Larry was. He also had a wider punch selection than Ali, again imo. He could put a beating on someone through force, not speed.

    His heart was among the biggest in Heavyweight history, up there with Ali, Frazier, Marciano and Holyfield. He had unnatural recuperative powers and even coming out of retirement at an old age still got up in seconds against a prime Mike Tyson. He looked like every bit the ATG he is in the against Witherspoon.
    He was a very fun fighter to watch, having bruisers with Witherspoon, Snipes and Norton and technical masterpieces against Shavers and Cooney. He also put some horrendous beatings on people. The Tex Cobb and Ali fights coming to mind. He had bruisers with Norton, Witherspoon and Mercer, all of which were very entertaining.
    But for me the most impressive thing about Larry was his his longevity and consistency.
    He took everyone seriously and so had one of the longest title runs of all time.


    Who out of the guys given beat him?


    For a final piece on him, why he was so disrespected in general.

    It was because imo, he had the impossible task of filling Ali's shoes, and people didn't like his attitude. What he's remembered for in general is his absolute obliteration of Ali and getting obliterated by Tyson.
    Why Cooney walked first is beyond me, well it isn't actually, in my mind it was clearly to do with race. But even if it was the fact they had the long reigning Champion walk first was disgusting.
    I'm glad people who understand boxing, heavyweights and the general career of Holmes know what he's all about. And that's he's a staple of a good top 5 HW list.
    Alot of people seemed to not like his attitude.
    But ultimately I think it just came down to people having to see Ali's era ride off into retirement and put up with the new bucks, who gave Ali the worst beating he ever took. It wasn't Larry's fault imo, anyone wouldn't have been well received in that position, aside from Iron Mike.

    I've never not liked Larry bit after watching these fights I've really started to warm to him.
    For most the best way to improve his style would be to add more power but I think if was a tad more accurate (outside of the jab) or be faster he'd be almost impossible to beat. In the twilight years of his reign he could have done with throwing more.
     
  2. roughdiamond

    roughdiamond Ridin' the rails Full Member

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    Wheras Ali's jab was like a whip, Holme's was like a pike. Piercing.
     
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  3. George Crowcroft

    George Crowcroft Youngest Ezzard Charles Fan Ever Full Member

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    Holmes vs...

    Spinks 2

    1. Holmes 10-9
    2. Holmes 20-18 (Holmes 10-9)
    3. Holmes 30-27 (Holmes 10-9)
    4. Holmes 39-37 (Spinks 10-9) CLOSE
    5. Holmes 49-46 (Holmes 10-9) CLOSE
    6. Holmes 58-56 (Spinks 10-9)
    7. Holmes 67-66 (Holmes 10-9) CLOSE
    8. Holmes 77-75 (Spinks 10-9)
    9. Holmes 87-84 (Holmes 10-9)
    10. Holmes 96-94 (Spinks 10-9) CLOSE
    11. Holmes 106-103 (Holmes 10-9)
    12. Holmes 115-113 (Spinks 10-9)
    13. Holmes 124-123 (Spinks 10-9) CLOSE
    14. Holmes 134-132 (Holmes 10-9)
    15. Holmes 143-142 (Spinks 10-9)

    Norton

    1. Holmes 10-9 CLOSE
    2. Holmes 20-18 (Holmes 10-9)
    3. Holmes 30-27 (Holmes 10-9) CLOSE
    4. Holmes 40-36 (Holmes 10-9)
    5. Holmes 49-46 (Norton 10-9) CLOSE
    6. Holmes 59-55 (Holmes 10-9)
    7. Holmes 68-65 (Norton 10-9) CLOSE
    8. Holmes 78-75 (Even 10-9)
    9. Holmes 88-84 (Holmes 10-9)
    10. Holmes 97-94 (Norton 10-9) CLOSE
    11. Holmes 106-104 (Norton 10-9)
    12. Holmes 116-113 (Holmes 10-9)
    13. Holmes 126-122 (Holmes 10-9)
    14. Holmes 135-132 (Norton 10-9)
    15. Holmes 145-141 (Holmes 10-9)

    Williams

    1. Williams 10-9
    2. Even 19-19 (Holmes 10-9)
    3. Holmes 29-28 (Holmes 10-9)
    4. Holmes 39-37 (Holmes 10-9)
    5. Holmes 49-46 (Holmes 10-9)
    6. Holmes 58-56 (Williams 10-9)
    7. Holmes 68-65 (Holmes 10-9)
    8. Holmes 77-75 (Williams 10-9)
    9. Holmes 87-84 (Holmes 10-9)
    10. Holmes 96-94 (Williams 10-9)
    11. Holmes 105-104 (Williams 10-9)
    12. Holmes 115-113 (Holmes 10-9)
    13. Holmes 124-123 (Williams 10-9)
    14. Even 133-133 (Williams 10-9)
    15. Holmes 143-142 (Holmes 10-9)

    Cooney

    1. Holmes 10-9
    2. Holmes 20-17 (Holmes 10-8)
    3. Holmes 29-27 (Cooney 10-9) CLOSE
    4. Holmes 39-36 (Holmes 10-9)
    5. Holmes 49-45 (Holmes 10-9)
    6. Holmes 59-54 (Holmes 10-9)
    7. Holmes 69-63 (Holmes 10-9)
    8. Holmes 79-72 (Holmes 10-9)
    9. Holmes 88-80 (Holmes 9-8)* CLOSE
    10. Holmes 97-90 (Cooney 10-9)
    11. Holmes 107-98 (Holmes 10-8)*
    12. Holmes 117-107 (Holmes 10-9)

    Shavers 2

    1. Holmes 10-9
    2. Holmes 20-18 (Holmes 10-9)
    3. Holmes 30-27 (Holmes 10-9)
    4. Holmes 40-36 (Holmes 10-9)
    5. Holmes 50-45 (Holmes 10-9)
    6. Holmes 60-54 (Holmes 10-9)
    7. Holmes 68-64 (Shavers 10-8)
    8. Holmes 78-73 (Holmes 10-9)
    9. Holmes 88-82 (Holmes 10-9)
    10. Holmes 98-91 (Holmes 10-9)

    Witherspoon

    1. Holmes 10-9
    2. Holmes 20-18 (Holmes 10-9)
    3. Holmes 29-28 (Witherspoon 10-9)
    4. Even 38-38 (Witherspoon 10-9)
    5. Holmes 48-47 (Holmes 10-9)
    6: Holmes 58-56 (Holmes 10-9)
    7. Holmes 67-66 (Holmes 10-9)
    8. Holmes 77-75 (Holmes 10-9)
    9. Holmes 86-85 (Witherspoon 10-9)
    10. Holmes 96-94 (Holmes 10-9)
    11. Holmes 105-104 (Witherspoon 10-9)
    12. Holmes 115-112 (Holmes 10-9)

    Mercer

    1. Mercer 10-9
    2. Even 19-19 (Holmes 10-9)
    3. Holmes 29-28 (Holmes 10-9)
    4. Holmes 39-37 (Holmes 10-9) CLOSE
    5. Holmes 49-46 (Holmes 10-9)
    6. Holmes 59-55 (Holmes 10-9)
    7. Holmes 69-64 (Holmes 10-9)
    8. Holmes 78-74 (Mercer 10-9) CLOSE
    9. Holmes 88-83 (Holmes 10-9)
    10. Holmes 97-93 (Mercer 10-9) CLOSE
    11. Holmes 107-102 (Holmes 10-9)
    12. Holmes 117-111 (Holmes 10-9)


    Ali
    100-90, 10 round shut out

    Cobb
    150-135, 15 round shut out

    Shavers 1
    120-108, 12 round shut out
     
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  4. Boxing2019

    Boxing2019 Member Full Member

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    Ali: points.
    Prime Tyson: KO between the 4th and the 8th.
    Prime Foreman: KO (points: Foreman or Holmes)
    Lewis: KO or points.
     
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  5. Glass City Cobra

    Glass City Cobra Well-Known Member Full Member

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    I think tyson would pull it off even if they were both prime. He had just the right style. It would be a gruelling war either way.

    Frazier might be able to wewr hin down. If he could get past Alis blindingly fast jab its not too impossible for him to dodge holmes' (at his peak condition). What bothers me is joes tendency to swell and Larry s powerful uppercut. I only slightly favor Frazier because larry didnt have the footwork or flurries to pepper frazier as well as Ali did as he bored in. But the flip side is Larry wasnt as weak to the left hook. Very compelling matchup.

    Chris Byrd might pull a Michael Spinx with his cagey annoying style. I see larry getting very annoyed and impatient and possibly losing that one.

    Wladmir klitschko might pull it off as long as he doesnt get stopped. He's one of the very, very few fighters who could hang with larry on the outside with his own respectable jab. Plus he had good power and height, larry would have quite the task ahead of him.

    I see larry vs ali and foreman as 50/50.
     
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  6. The Undefeated Lachbuster

    The Undefeated Lachbuster Boxing Addict Full Member

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  7. George Crowcroft

    George Crowcroft Youngest Ezzard Charles Fan Ever Full Member

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    You think Dempsey beats everyone
     
  8. The Undefeated Lachbuster

    The Undefeated Lachbuster Boxing Addict Full Member

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    Not the great Rocco Marchegiano

    Oh and Canelo would UD Dempsey
     
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  9. George Crowcroft

    George Crowcroft Youngest Ezzard Charles Fan Ever Full Member

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    Ahh of course.

    Ginger, the man who can't be beat on points. Mayweather? That fight was a draw.
     
  10. The Undefeated Lachbuster

    The Undefeated Lachbuster Boxing Addict Full Member

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    I'll never forget one ref voted Canelo vs Mayweather 114-114

    Clearly gingerbreadman is the GOAT according to boxrec. Held their #1 p4p fighter to a draw on a scorecard pre prime
     
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  11. HOUDINI

    HOUDINI Boxing Addict Full Member

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    Holmes had a poor left hook. Thrown poorly with little power.

    Primarily he had a static side stepping stance or with lesser opponents he stepped forward. He lacked the agile, quick, athletic footwork/lateral movement of Ali. So while Ali would pepper his opponents with jabs and combinations at angles, much more difficult target to counter, Holmes was in comparison static. Thus a more one dimensional offense.

    Holmes only bested Ali via Jab, right hand and right uppercut power. Ali was head and shoulders above Holmes in all other categories.
     
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  12. George Crowcroft

    George Crowcroft Youngest Ezzard Charles Fan Ever Full Member

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    Lol
     
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  13. Boxing2019

    Boxing2019 Member Full Member

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    Imo Holmes was one of the best, he had all. No discuss. But he had 60-70% of Foreman power. With 80% it would have been the number 1.
     
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  14. George Crowcroft

    George Crowcroft Youngest Ezzard Charles Fan Ever Full Member

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    60%? Surely that's too high. Imo he was more like 30.

    I'd pick the best version of Foreman to stop everyone Homes fought in 4 rounds or less. With maybe an exception for Cobb
     
  15. The Funny Man 7

    The Funny Man 7 Boxing Addict Full Member

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    I'm a Holmes skeptic reporting in. I think its a travesty the way he was disrespected in his prime. It was unfair the way his brilliance was overshadowed by Ali, and I feel bad that he wasn't celebrated by boxing fans when he was at his best. but in my opinion fans have overcompensated.

    My issue with Holmes is that he failed to meet up with too many of the best potential challengers when he was in his prime. Every champ who has a lengthy reign misses a couple of good contenders along the way. But its kind of nuts to think how many tough contenders Holmes didn't meet up with, even though he had time to face guys like Ossie Ocasio, Lucien Rodriguez, Steve Frank, Scott Ledux, etc.

    John Tate
    Michael Dokes
    Greg Page
    Gerrie Coetzee
    Pinklon Thomas
    Tony Tubbs

    Again I'm not saying that a champ has to beat every single contender, and i also understand the Gerrie Coetzee fight didn't happen for political reasons, but it says something when a champ misses out on bouts with 6 of the best fighters of that era. That hurts a resume.
     
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