Discussion in 'Classic Boxing Forum' started by Glass City Cobra, Feb 3, 2019.
I'd say Liston was clearly better than everyone but Marciano and perhaps Walcott.
This cant possibly be a serious discussion. Louis only has sheer longevity over ali when it comes to opposition. Ali beat 5 or 6 atgs, many of whom were in their prime.
ATGs according to who? Many of these guys are considered great because they beat Ali or guys who beat Ali which seems like circular logic.
My god youre an idiot.
How else are you supposed to determine if a guy is an ATG except by who they beat in their own era? Frazier didnt just beat ali, he cleaned out his division.
To answer your question, every boxing expert/trainer/writer worth a damn has frazier, Norton, Liston, foreman, etc as atgs. I dont get what's so confusing about things that are common knowledge. By all means, explain to me why you think they arent atgs. I need a good laugh.
I love Joe Frazier but did he clean out the division?
Pretty much, then Ali went on to beat the top contenders that Frazier had already beaten during his absence. Well that is at least before Ali took over as champ again. Whether they had declined or improved by the time Ali fought them is a different matter.
The biggest difference between there opposition is that Louis did a massive body of work in his earlier career, whereas Ali's best wins came later on had already racked up 6 fights with lineal champs losing one and winning the rest by knockout. Sharkey, Baer, Schmellingx2, Braddock, Carnera all by the time Ali had faced Liston.
Ali's opposition versus Louis is a serious discussion that requires extensive knowledge of both eras, not just Ali's.
I see what you're getting at but it's not a foregone conclusion that any of them would beat the best Max Schmeling, Max Baer, Jack Sharkey, Buddy Baer, Tommy Farr, Billy Conn, Bob Pastor and I know we make jokes about him a lot but even Tony Galento or Primo Carnera (though I wouldn't mind always making these 2 the underdog). Say Bonavena fighting a Max Baer who came to fight. That's not a foregone conclusion and Max Baer would have a realistic chance at victory. Or Max Schmeling vs Floyd Patterson, they certainly are equal calibur of opponent. Both at their best in a trilogy, you can expect both to drop one to the other, I don't think either man would go undefeated.
Well Liston wasn't in top form for those fights. If it was prime Liston or at least if he had been in top shape for those fights, I would agree.
Many people born in the 1940s and 1950s see Frazier, Norton, Foreman as ATGs but that's not true of people in other age groups.
The normal criteria for being an ATG is dominance and Frazier, Foreman, and Norton didn't dominate their era. Thus they don't ft the normal criteria for greatness. Norton was never even champion and Foreman had only two title defenses. Where is the dominance?
Norton being an ATG is just silly, his achievements simply don't measure up by any criteria.
He was 7 months from wiping out Patterson in 1 round. Which of Louis's opponents came off a similar performance?
Do you not think Frazier was very dominant until Foreman blasted him out? I 100% agree with you on Foreman and Norton
Look at the competition available when frazier was on his way to becoming champ and who amongst them he beat leading up to and including his decisive win over Ali.
Then explain to me who was left that he could have fought in that time frame. Who were all these amazing ranked prime fighters in the late 60's and early 70's Frazier should have fought but didn't? I'll wait.
What joe did was impressive especially taking out the previous champions by devastating KO. The difference is Braddock sharkey and especially carnera would not last long against Ali's best opppnents. And as you yourself pointed out, Ali was past his prime and still beat the best guys of the 70's when he lost a lot of his stamina and speed. Joe never regained the championship, ali did it 3x. These factors cannot be ignored, but i will admit that joe reigning and not losing the belt on the first place is a good argument. However, Ali was stripped the first time and missed crucial prime years. Joe's career was interrupted by the war.
When you put it that way, the argument is a little close. But when the conversation is strictly about h2h competition i cant put ANYONE Joe Louis beat on the level of foreman or frazier except possibly Walcott. See tne difference?
I wasnt implying that bonavena would just trash max baer or that norton easily beats Braddock. Those would at the very least be competitive.
The point was when comparing best opponent vs best opponent ali quite clearly has the advantage. Louis has sheer quantity and longevity, but ali has quantity AND quality. No one Louis defeated in the ring would be favored over a prime foreman or Frazier. Period.
Frazier absolutely was dominant until he lost to foreman. His resume speaks for itself.
As for Foreman, kinda hars to be dominant when youre fighting what many consiser the #1 hw. Holyfield never "dominated" his era but he's obviously an ATG. Patterson wasnt dominant but by virtue of becoming the first 2x champ and having such an impressive resume he's obviously an atg.
I dont think its a coincidence that its very hard to "dominate" an era when there are nearly a dozen skilled, prime, athletic fighters in your era. Usually when fighters have very long uninterrupted reigns that are 4, 5, 6+ years long they either have weaker competition or theyre so damn skilled and above their competition that people make fun of them. Joe Louis and Floyd Mayweather are a perfect example of this. Do you think Floys for example would have still have a long uninterrupted undefeated reign if his era had guys like duran or whittaker or he had trilogies with a prime pacquiao, Oscar, etc? I highly doubt it and i consider Floyd the #1 defensive fighter of all time.