Who came up with George Foreman’s comeback strategy?

Discussion in 'Classic Boxing Forum' started by sweetsci, Sep 24, 2021.

  1. sweetsci

    sweetsci Well-Known Member Full Member

    Jan 22, 2008
    Who came up with George Foreman’s comeback strategy of being very active against subpar opponents? George himself? Any advisors?
  2. Kamikaze

    Kamikaze Bye for now! banned Full Member

    Oct 12, 2020
    Uncle Bob helped quite a bit from memory once the ball got rolling. I like that he did things the right way picking up Ws gradually against stepper comp and didn't rush for the title.

    George himself became a part time pro really by the time the dust had nearly settled just sitting by the phone picking up checks. Then along came Moorer...
    Bumnard_Hopkins likes this.
  3. mr. magoo

    mr. magoo Obsessed with Boxing Full Member

    Jan 3, 2007
    I’m thinking Archie Moore ? Moore himself was always a very active and often took on lesser opponents in between bigger fights. He needed the money. And incidentally so did George in his comeback years
    Turnip mk3 and Rumsfeld like this.
  4. Saintpat

    Saintpat Obsessed with Boxing Full Member

    Jun 26, 2009
    Bob Arum had nothing to do with it at the start. Ron Weathers was the guy who handled the early bouts. Rick “Elvis” Parker promoted at least a couple of them. George won a few and Bob got interested, the first fight he promoted of ‘Old’ George’s being Qawi.

    At first George just wanted to raise a few bucks for a community center and his ministry. Those first few fights were in backwater towns and probably didn’t pay much. Then I think he realized he had more left than he expected or people realized. And he liked the attention. And it just took off.

    But I’ve always been fascinated by the approach — it was basically almost just like his first career, minus the four- and six-rounders to start it off. It was plotted like you would a guy just graduating to main event status but not in a hurry, giving him time to get in better shape, get his timing down, work off years of rust and also to grow as a fighter into his new body with new limitations.

    Larry Holmes more or less copied it in his post-Tyson comeback. Roberto Duran also kind of hopped in and out of that kind of fights but he never went away for a long time or disappeared for long from bigger fights.

    Usually a guy comes back and maybe takes one or two tuneups and wants a contender or a champion. This was much more deliberate, which is interesting considering his own clock was ticking due to age.

    It’s a rare model. Not sure it would work for a lighter-weight guy where speed and reflexes will have deteriorated beyond the margin where one could remain competitive. But for a power puncher, wow, it was absolutely genius.
  5. choklab

    choklab cocoon of horror Full Member

    Dec 31, 2009
    Ultimately it was the right thing to do. Just start out all over again and getting matched as if he were a young prospect.
  6. Wvboxer

    Wvboxer Member Full Member

    Apr 20, 2013
    It’s a smart strategy. I always thought Tyson should’ve had more low level fights when he got out of prison. He won a title sure but activity might’ve helped him.

    George was in terrible shape in his first comeback fight (Zouski?). He needed the work to shake off rust and build stamina. First time I saw him was against Rocky Sekorski and by that time, he looked decent. His timing wasn’t quite there but he showed the jab. He gradually got better with time. He wasn’t beating anyone of note but he was winning. The activity had to help him feel at home in the ring again.

    I always wondered about the weight. He was pretty lean against Qawi but never came in the low again. I guess the weight added to his power.
    Last edited: Nov 28, 2021
  7. Glass City Cobra

    Glass City Cobra Boxing Addict Full Member

    Jan 6, 2017
    It was 100% intentional to come back facing low level opposition to shake off the ring rust and gain confidence/timing etc. He talks about it in his biography. He specifically mentions that he didn't want to make the same mistakes as previous champions who jumped right into title shots and got humiliated because they rushed things.

    He addressed that in an interview. He reasoned that he never was very fast and his main asset was size and power. So he figured that if it was impossible suddenly become faster in his 40's he may as well stick to his strengths and get bigger. Plus he had grown sick of all the dieting and dehydration he went through in the 70's claiming it was like asking a lion to lose weight.
    Turnip mk3 likes this.
  8. Pepsi Dioxide

    Pepsi Dioxide Well-Known Member Full Member

    Oct 22, 2020
    Agreed, Tyson was so high profile though with so much money on the table I don't think it was possible.

    But yea the foreman strategy is one of the better ones I thought
  9. thistle

    thistle Boxing Addict Full Member

    Dec 21, 2016
    Big George.
    Saintpat likes this.
  10. TBooze

    TBooze Obsessed with Boxing Full Member

    Oct 22, 2006
    Luck; he was only going to have one or two fights to raise a bit of cash, for his church; he then got the bug again!
  11. Jamal Perkins

    Jamal Perkins Well-Known Member Full Member

    Oct 19, 2012
    Excellent post. And of course he learned new skills he didn't have in his first career...especially the cross arm defence...the relaxed demeanour and standing in between rounds and yet having tremendous 12 round stamina....the last...a trait that was noticeabley absent in his first career....no question in my mind....if George mark 1 and George mk2 were combined we have the greatest HW of all time.
  12. TBooze

    TBooze Obsessed with Boxing Full Member

    Oct 22, 2006
    Superb post.
  13. djanders

    djanders Boxing Addict Full Member

    Feb 21, 2009
    While not the prime architect of Big George's comeback, Archie Moore deserves a shout.
  14. he grant

    he grant Historian/Film Maker Full Member

    Jul 15, 2008
    George called every shot from the start to the finish .. every one.
    johnmaff36 likes this.
  15. Turnip mk3

    Turnip mk3 Member Full Member

    Feb 6, 2021
    Was much more relaxed in his come back fights .steady pressure with a huge jab a power shots. George looked like a man out for a walk in the park. His opposition look less relaxed but usually ended up very relaxed on the canvas !!