Where do you rank sonny liston?

Discussion in 'Classic Boxing Forum' started by SonnyListon>, May 14, 2024.

Where do you rank sonny liston

  1. Top 1

    1 vote(s)
  2. Top 5

    6 vote(s)
  3. Top 10

    20 vote(s)
  4. Top 20

    9 vote(s)
  5. Top 20+

    1 vote(s)
  1. BoB Box

    BoB Box Rollin with the punches Full Member

    Jun 13, 2022
    In a sense Sonny's boxing capabilities intertwine with his personal life. Exhibit A - Sonny's involvement with Frankie Carbo and Blinky Palermo most likely dictated the outcome of the phantom punch fight and possibly the quit on your stool bout as well against Clay/Ali.

    Where would Sonny be ranked if his fights against Ali were legit is the real question imo.
    mcvey and Kid Bacon like this.
  2. SonnyListon>

    SonnyListon> Member Full Member

    May 14, 2024
    That’s fair
    BoB Box likes this.
  3. Glass City Cobra

    Glass City Cobra H2H Burger King Full Member

    Jan 6, 2017
    I like to numerize different areas to give a boxer an overall rating for their boxing ability/h2h threat level.


    Power 9
    Hand speed 5
    Chin 8
    Stamina 8
    Foot speed 4
    Technique 7
    Offense 8
    Defense 7
    Accuracy 7
    Timing 5
    Jab 10
    L Hook 8
    L Uppercut 7
    R cross 8
    R Uppercut 9
    Combinations 7
    Parrying 7
    Ring IQ 6
    Physical strength 9
    Heart (recovery) 6

    Overall rating: 7.3

    Liston had mostly good to great stats in multiple areas. He had good power, could take a punch, had underrated technique, solid fundamentals, and was one of the best boxer punchers of all time. Unlike so many heavy hitters, he didn't have stamina issues and knew how to win rounds or outbox people as seen in the Machen fight. Liston was one of the more well rounded HW champions and his only notable weaknesses were that he was relatively slow and didn't have as much tenacity as other greats.

    A rating of 7.3 doesn't seem all that high, but if I did this sort of tallying for most other boxers, they would probably struggle to have a score like that. I think Liston is a solid lock for top 10 in terms of overall boxing ability/talent/h2h factors. Plenty of other boxers and trainers seemed to think so, as I showed in my thread compiling multiple quotes praising Liston's ability.
    Stevie G and Kid Bacon like this.
  4. Kid Bacon

    Kid Bacon All-Time-Fat Full Member

    Nov 8, 2011
    I know how you feel.
    Mine was the only vote for Liston as Top 10...
    Anyway, it was a good reminder of why I usually stay away of the main forum.
    Last edited: May 14, 2024
    Dorrian_Grey likes this.
  5. Fogger

    Fogger Father, grandfather and big sports fan. Full Member

    Aug 9, 2021
    With the fighters active before 1990, I put a lot of stock in how they performed as champions when I rate them. In that aspect, Liston is similar to George Foreman ... great heavyweight, less than special as a champion. Without a quality championship pedigree I tend to rate them a little lower than a rating their skills alone may suggest. That is why I have both Foreman and Liston just a little bit outside the top ten.

    By the way, the reason I put less stock in title fights for more modern fighters is that there are so many champions now that titles are watered down and don't have nearly as much meaning as they once did.
    newurban99 and Kid Bacon like this.
  6. GoldenHulk

    GoldenHulk Boxing Addict Full Member

    Jan 7, 2007
    Haha this new boy is looking to get banned real quick! :D
    swagdelfadeel likes this.
  7. Jakub79

    Jakub79 Member Full Member

    Mar 3, 2024
    he seems to value it more than most people on this forum. I know it's controversial.
    In my opinion, it could be in the top 5. I have no problem if someone sees it in the top 8-10. In my opinion it shouldn't be any lower.
    Liston made good, very good players look like yourneymen. Clev Williams, Zora Folley, Roy Harris, Wayne Bethea, Nino Valdez... I think the victory over Patterson is very underrated. People forget who Floyd was. Later people started saying that he was too small, too glassy, but they forget how great Patterson's skills were and that no one dominated him like Liston. it's a bit crazy that people value Marciano's wins over Moore, Charles, Walcott after hard fights with these LHWs and do not appreciate the total domination over Patterson, pointing out that Floyd was a small heavyweight. I have the impression that if Liston had been weaker, he would have lost a few rounds to Patterson, maybe he was on the floor but won at the end, it would have been appreciated more.
    The low rating is influenced by the defeats against Ali. Strange, controversial, quite humiliating for Liston. As we know, he had quite a difficult life outside the ring. He wasn't a professional 24/7. After the fights with Patterson, he stopped focusing on boxing, and there is evidence of this.
  8. MaccaveliMacc

    MaccaveliMacc Member Full Member

    Feb 27, 2024
  9. Romero

    Romero Slapping Enthusiast Full Member

    Mar 27, 2024
    “Sonny” Liston was very good and a solid technician he an all rounder and someone who could teach you to box unlike someone great but stylistically Individual like Muhammad Ali.
    “Sonny” wouldn’t shame himself in any era and matches up well with many former and current champions.
    I think he’d be more susceptible to smaller, nimbler heavyweights such as Joe Louis and Archie Moore then he would fighters such as Lennox Lewis.
    Last edited: May 15, 2024
  10. Alexandrow Vids

    Alexandrow Vids Member Full Member

    Oct 28, 2014
    For me he is in the Top 5 because he is simply a universally good boxer who has almost no weaknesses against a
    variety of boxing styles.

    He has devastating power but can also take some punishment and has enough stamina in a longer fight.
    Can also tactically keep his opponents at a distance with his long jab , great head movement and decent defense.

    This is also shown by his record where he has successes against punchers like Williams but also against awkward, slick
    boxers in Eddie Machen.
  11. swagdelfadeel

    swagdelfadeel Obsessed with Boxing Full Member

    Jul 30, 2014
    I agree. I rank him quite a bit higher than most due to his excellent record against quite a variety of different styles.
    Last edited: May 15, 2024
    Jakub79 likes this.
  12. McGrain

    McGrain Diamond Dog Staff Member

    Mar 21, 2007
  13. mcvey

    mcvey VIP Member Full Member

    Jun 2, 2006
    Easily top ten.
    Richard M Murrieta likes this.
  14. Noel857

    Noel857 I Am Duran Full Member

    Mar 24, 2019
    I have him at 9
    Greg Price99 likes this.
  15. Greg Price99

    Greg Price99 Boxing Addict Full Member

    Dec 17, 2018

    There's nothing separating #8-11 for me, I could easily see Sonny anywhere in that range on my list.
    Last edited: May 15, 2024