Was Larry Holmes scared of rematches?

Discussion in 'Classic Boxing Forum' started by themostoverrated, Feb 20, 2024.

  1. NewChallenger

    NewChallenger Member Full Member

    Oct 17, 2020
    I am gonna be honest. If I was a fighter, and the public wanted to see me fight someone. I would fight them once, and if it proved to be hell, I would duck the rematch. Not because I was afraid to lose, but it is just not worth having another war just to be able to say I beat them twice.
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  2. Journeyman92

    Journeyman92 I’m become seeker of milk Full Member

    Sep 22, 2021
    I’d say it was about the same with Holmes.
  3. mr. magoo

    mr. magoo VIP Member Full Member

    Jan 3, 2007
    the stoppage wasn’t unjustified but that wasn’t the main point of my post anyway
  4. RulesMakeItInteresting

    RulesMakeItInteresting Boxing Junkie Full Member

    Mar 23, 2019
    All respect, I'm not sure Magoo was himself questioning the stoppage.

    You are right, Weaver was done, done, done when the ref stopped it.
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  5. JackSilver

    JackSilver Boxing Addict Full Member

    Jun 24, 2017
    I don’t think there was any huge public or media clamour for rematches. Witherspoon an Williams were practically unknowns when Holmes gave them their shots an apart from the defeated fighters themselves no one was demanding an immediate rematches.
  6. RulesMakeItInteresting

    RulesMakeItInteresting Boxing Junkie Full Member

    Mar 23, 2019
    I agree with a lot of this.

    However, I have to give Norton full props for his performance against Holmes. I thought that was his last fight in full glory, he was inspired and it showed. In fact, I always thought it was strange for Ken to say he started slacking after the Ali III fight...imo there are absolutely no signs of that against Larry. I thought Ken looked as good as he ever did, which is saying something.
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  7. Pat M

    Pat M Active Member Full Member

    Jun 20, 2017
    Norton was 34 when he fought Holmes, not 37. I've always scored that fight about 10-5 for Holmes. And Holmes apparently had a torn bicep for the fight. Doubtful that Norton would have done better in a rematch.

    I just watched the Holmes - Weaver fight that was posted on this thread. That was an action fight, back and forth fighting like one seldom sees in heavyweight fights, especially fights that last 11-12 rounds. That fight had slipped under my radar and might have been the best heavyweight fight I've seen from the 70s. They both put it all on the line and both of them looked good, not a sloppy fight, but both were hurt at times. I like Weaver's boxing ability, the guy was well schooled. Anybody who thinks Holmes did not have a hook should watch this one, he definitely did and used it to the body and the head. Holmes threw a jab, uppercut, hook in one left hand only combination. I've seen some small fighters do that, but it's rare among heavyweights.

    If the money was right for a rematch, I'm sure both of the fighters would have been willing. Another back and forth fight like this one might have shortened their careers. Apparently both of them are doing well now, so it's probably a good thing that there was no rematch.
    Last edited: Feb 22, 2024
  8. Fireman Fred

    Fireman Fred Member Full Member

    Mar 8, 2014
    I echo your comments, I also was surprised what a great fight it was. Everyone talks about Holmes vs Norton or Witherspoon or his incredible off the floor win over Shavers but not Weaver.

    They did have a rematch 21 years later! Holmes (51) won easily over the 49 year old Weaver in six rounds.
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  9. Eddie Ezzard

    Eddie Ezzard Boxing Addict Full Member

    Jan 19, 2016
    Course there is. There's always the possibility that you can get lucky once, with the right circumstances bit there's a reason there's no saying 'twice in a blue moon'. Doing something twice removes the lingering doubt that it's authentic.

    If Holyfield had never fought Tyson again, he'd have been accused of ducking Tyson, of having fluked a victory by catching Tyson on what had to have been an off night. Tyson was still the slight betting favourite in the rematch. It absolutely enhanced Evander's legacy, beating him again and not only for the dignified way he handled the craziness in the ring.

    Ali's legacy is sound but you still get people saying Foreman went stir crazy, fought stupidly, ropes, drugs, humidity and so on. If Ali evens the playing field (not that they were uneven in Zaire) and beats Foreman again in a different environment, his stock absolutely goes even further up.

    Foreman's legacy went up when he knocked Frazier out again, same for Louis and Conn, Marciano and Walcott. Fighters aren't exactly the same every time they fight. Knocking out live opponents, even ones that you kayoed before, enhances your legacy.
  10. JohnThomas1

    JohnThomas1 VIP Member Full Member

    Apr 27, 2005
    A fine post.
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  11. Hopnchop

    Hopnchop New Member Full Member

    Apr 5, 2022
    It had to do with money. There was more available for first, than for a rematch
  12. JohnThomas1

    JohnThomas1 VIP Member Full Member

    Apr 27, 2005
    There can be no doubt Norton was past peak so i can't go with "full glory". He was just two months short of 35. At the same age Holmes too was visibly declining. Norton's last peak fight was Ali III for me. As he said himself his intensity dropped off after that. Earnie Shavers pole axed him in less than 2 minutes 9 months later and he could well have done similar to the Norton that Holmes fought - styles. A lot of people thought Jimmy Young beat him prior to Holmes and i think Norton would have beaten Young in better fashion a year or two earlier. I thought he was a step down and Holmes was a step below what he would be a couple of years later with a bit more experience and rounding out. As they stood they put on one of the great heavyweight clashes tho.

    I think they'd split a trilogy peak for peak. Norton was hell for boxers. They'd have a top fight every time.
  13. swagdelfadeel

    swagdelfadeel Obsessed with Boxing Full Member

    Jul 30, 2014
    Yeah Norton was past his prime by Holmes fight imo and declined even further afterwards. That bout took quite a bit out of him, physically and mentally.

    Even for the third fight with Ali, he was inferior to his form in their middle bout (particularly in terms of speed) which imo was his absolute peak even if she lost rather decisively. He only looked better in the third fight because he was facing a vastly declined version of Ali.
  14. JohnThomas1

    JohnThomas1 VIP Member Full Member

    Apr 27, 2005
    Fair points. The belting by Foreman post Ali II wouldn't have done him many favors.
  15. swagdelfadeel

    swagdelfadeel Obsessed with Boxing Full Member

    Jul 30, 2014
    Yeah I've spoken about it plenty of times. It hurt his confidence in general imo but particularly against punchers. He actually took some hard shots rather well in the first round and had some kind of game plan, but against Shavers, and Cooney, he froze as soon as he felt their power and completely abandoned his game plan (against Shavers at least, the Cooney fight didn't go on long enough to establish if he had a game plan at all) but he was past his prime against both and flat out shot against Cooney.