Who's An Old Time Fighter, That You Find Overrated?

Discussion in 'Classic Boxing Forum' started by Fergy, Apr 2, 2024.



  1. Fergy

    Fergy Walking Dead Full Member

    24,970
    28,565
    Jan 8, 2017
    A guy that you don't quite see what it's all about with.
    By old time, pre 1950?
     
    ikrasevic and Stevie G like this.
  2. Mark Anthony

    Mark Anthony Wilder needs to retire Full Member

    2,630
    1,225
    May 17, 2023
    Carnera, he was the worst heavyweight champ of all-time, a complete fraud.
     
  3. Ney

    Ney Active Member Full Member

    1,236
    1,569
    Feb 13, 2024
    But who rates him?
     
    Turnip mk3 and Reinhardt like this.
  4. Mark Anthony

    Mark Anthony Wilder needs to retire Full Member

    2,630
    1,225
    May 17, 2023
    A few of the boxing24 forum members, I couldn`t believe it.
     
    Kid Bacon and Ney like this.
  5. Ioakeim Tzortzakis

    Ioakeim Tzortzakis Active Member Full Member

    780
    2,583
    Aug 27, 2020
    Gonna go with Fitzsimmons here. He absolutely was a great, but I've recently been having a hard time justifying him as a top 10 P4P ATG. He is actually an underrated Heavyweight IMO, and has some good wins below that weight too against Hall, Dempsey and O'Brien. But he has a relatively thin winning resume for such a highly regarded guy.

    Sure, being a Middleweight that won the lineal Heavyweight title is a feat that only he can claim of achieving. That said, Fitz weighed near today's 168 limit and Corbett weighed about as much as Marciano used to, it wasn't as if he was fighting an Ali sized guy in there, and I think most people are willing to ignore that. Most of Fitz's HW ventures were against men that weighed about 10-15 lbs more than him, the odd 220 or 230 lb behemoth was a novice that would lose to any half decent Featherweight. Several fighters have had a similar handicap to what Fitz had.

    Is his Heavyweight tenure really enough to have him compared to guys like Benny Leonard, Archie Moore, Barney Ross, Tony Canzoneri, Joe Louis and Willie Pep ? In my opinion, no.
     
    TipNom and Fireman Fred like this.
  6. Kid Bacon

    Kid Bacon All-Time-Fat Full Member

    1,015
    780
    Nov 8, 2011
    Although in stricto sensu Rocky Marciano reign as a world champion was in the early 50s, his career started in the late 40s. Thus I would nominate him.

    I mean, he is an ATG and undefeated champion all right; but sometimes the worshipping he gets from some members of the "Church of Holy Rocky" goes way overboard...
     
    crixus85, newurban99 and Seamus like this.
  7. Greg Price99

    Greg Price99 Boxing Addict Full Member

    3,458
    6,157
    Dec 17, 2018
    I can't see Fitz outside my top 10 p4p.

    NP Jack Dempsey was considered the greatest ever MW (admittedly gloved boxing was still in it's infancy) & the p4p GOAT of all time when Fitz not only beat him for his MW title, but utterly dominated Dempsey over 13 one-sided rounds. Being that much better than the p4p #1 speaks to just how good Fitz was. There are some reports that Dempsey was unwell going into the fight, but our sport is littered with reports of famous/elite boxers being unwell or carrying an injury for a key loss, I disregard them unless the supporting evidence is very, very strong.

    It took c.100-years for a reigning or former LHW world champion to win the HW title, despite some brilliant LHW champions, including Moore (twice), JHL, Loughran, Conn (twice), Root & Carpentier challenging for it. Incredible then, that almost 90-years before Spinks beat Holmes, former MW world champion Fitzsimmons won the HW title, giving up 17lbs to the excellent Jim Corbett. In terms of a MW champion winning the lineal HW title, not only has this never been repeated, but only one LHW champion has won the HW title in the century & a quarter since.

    At the age of 40, in an era when a 40-year old boxer is as rare and considered as far past their prime as a 50-year old boxer is today, Fitz won the LHW title, beating the brilliant George Gardner in doing so.

    As well as wins over Corbett, Dempsey & Gardner, Fitz beat 37 (thirty seven) lbs heavier contender Gus Ruhlin, Tom Sharkey, ATG Philadelphia Jack O'Brien (admittedly in a 6-round newspaper decision, but then Fitz was 41, properly ancient for that time), the excellent Peter Maher x 2 (giving up 13lbs & 15lbs respectively), Billy McCarthy, Dan Creedon and eventually came out on top in a series vs Jim Hall after losing whilst green.

    In an era of 7 weight divisions, 1 champion per division, Fitz was champion in 3 of those divisions, which is all of the divisions he was eligible to fight in given his weight.

    All that said, I understand there are 10+ fighters in history with more recognisable (from today's perspective) names on their resumes and I appreciate the thread asks for fighters you think are overrated, which is akin to asking which fighters you rank lower than most, so in that regard Fitz is a good answer for you.
     
  8. HistoryZero26

    HistoryZero26 Member Full Member

    262
    192
    Jan 6, 2024
    7 or 8 winners of some version of the LHW title won some version of the HW title before Spinks. Of these Fitz is the only one to hold the HW title first and thats because his HW title predated the existence of the LHW division.

    The whole weight thing with Fitz v Gus Ruhlin is a bit misleading. This was a Wilder case where he had the nuclear hands and could have fought much heavier but chose not to. Fitzsimmons was almost 6 feet tall an average HW for the time. He gave up 10 pounds to Tom Sharkey who was 3 inches shorter than him. So naturally someone like Ruhlin was going to outweight him like a lot. I'm looking on boxing rec and in 1892 Fitzsimmons gave up 70, 75 and 140 pounds to fighters making their debut. 2nd,2nd and 1st round KO.

    When people hear about a MW champ or LHW champ going up to HW they are thinking of a smaller person putting on weight and managing to outpoint bigger stronger fighters. Not someone who can KO a 300 pound man at 160. He should be viewed as a HW campaigning at MW not the other way around.
     
    Last edited: Apr 2, 2024
    slash likes this.
  9. Ioakeim Tzortzakis

    Ioakeim Tzortzakis Active Member Full Member

    780
    2,583
    Aug 27, 2020
    Yeah, I get why people have him in the top 10, I used to have him there as well. I just consider it a bit too much of high praise at this point, now that I have delved deeper into some fighters into great detail, and I don't think he entirely deserves to be a top 10 lock anymore. He has the quality of fighters beaten to be in the top 20, but his quantity leaves something to be desired. Let us not forget that we are talking about the 10 best fighters who have ever drawn breath since the founding of the Marques of Queensbery rules since 1867. It's a very special club there, one I don't think one should enter so easily.

    IMO he has no case for top 5. Greb, Langford, Robinson, Armstrong and Charles are just so above him that it's not even funny to me. I went on a Greb research marathon the last few days and his resume is so deep he nearly made me cry. I'm convinced he had loose screws in his head, the guy has more wins against ranked fighters than anyone in the last 40 years despite there not being any official rankings until 1924 and him retiring in 1926, he was like 3-4 wins short of matching Ali and Louis, or something like that. Langford, Robinson, Charles and Armstrong, same kind of deal, not going into detail.

    Benny Leonard is to this day arguably the greatest Lightweight ever, something very few champs from so long ago ( Nonpareil Dempsey included) can be said of being anymore, and has wins over elite men from above the weight like Soldier Bartfield, and was very unfortunate to get DQ'd to a WW that some rank as high as top 3 in Jack Britton. Joe Gans, same kind of deal. Then you've got guys like Pep, Ali, Louis, Moore, Duran, Ross, McFarland and Canzoneri who have deeper resumes, top wins of similar quality to Fitz's best or a mix of the two. I'd say they have decent cases for being above him. Still a top 20 ATG for me, but giving him a top 10 spot so easily is just not something I can do anymore.
     
    Greg Price99 likes this.
  10. Greg Price99

    Greg Price99 Boxing Addict Full Member

    3,458
    6,157
    Dec 17, 2018
    As I said, to date, in gloved boxings c.140-year history, Spinks is the only reigning or former lineal LHW world champion to win the lineal HW world title. Its an extremely difficult thing to achieve. So, a MW champion winning the HW title is an absurd, outstanding achievement.

    I don't follow your 2nd paragraph, but boxing is correctly structured into weight, not height, divisions. Anyone weighing within the MW limit, is a MW. Fitz isn't the shortest HW champion in history, but he is the smallest.
     
    slash likes this.
  11. mr. magoo

    mr. magoo VIP Member Full Member

    48,116
    18,370
    Jan 3, 2007
    Is he really “ overrated “ though ? I don’t see him getting all that much praise.
     
    Stevie G and Fergy like this.
  12. Greg Price99

    Greg Price99 Boxing Addict Full Member

    3,458
    6,157
    Dec 17, 2018
    Fair enough.

    I have the same top 5 as you, though Fitz is my #6.

    I agree that there are other fighters, outside those top 5, who have more names, that are typically well recognised today, on their win resumes than Bob's. Based on his domination of the previous eras p4p #1, victories over multiple world class fighters much bigger than him and world class fighters when he was ancient for that era, I don't think any were likely better than Fitz, relative to both their size and the evolution of their era, though, which is why I have Bob #6.

    You're preaching to the converted on Greb. Rummy has a sticky thread, where posters rate the greatest fighters in each decade. As part of the research I did I came to the conclusion that based only on Greb's fights in the 1910s, he'd have an argument for the deepest win resume in boxing history and the same applies based solely on the fights he had in the 1920s. Combined, he has no competition for boxings deepest win resume, imo.
     
    Ioakeim Tzortzakis likes this.
  13. Melankomas

    Melankomas Prime Jeffries would demolish a grizzly in 2 Full Member

    3,162
    3,494
    Dec 18, 2022
    I’d say Louis. I find his resume overrated as some of his best wins were over the aging greats of a preceding (and better) era in Sharkey, Carnera, Baer and Schmeling. Sharkey was shot, Baer was one handed, Carnera wasn’t really the same after Baer dismantled him. I give Louis credit for beating a formidable Schmeling, but I also can’t help but wonder if Max could’ve survived the onslaught if his back wasn’t destroyed by Louis when he turned towards the ropes.

    Other notable wins by Joe are over Conn, Pastor, and JHL, but these men were also at pretty significant weight disparities in their fights with Louis. JHL and Pastor’s successes predominantly came against lighter Hws or LHWs, Conn‘s best HW wins were against Pastor and a pretty green Savold.
    I find it difficult to rate wins like that, similarly to Jeffries’ wins over smaller opponents like Fitzsimmons and Sharkey. I’d say some of Joe’s more underrated victories are against Farr and Ramage. The Walcott win remains as great of course.

    In the end, I’d say I rate Louis more highly as a H2H fighter than for who he’s beaten, since I think it was a pretty weak era comparatively speaking. That being said, Louis was so ridiculously dominant.
     
    Kid Bacon likes this.
  14. HistoryZero26

    HistoryZero26 Member Full Member

    262
    192
    Jan 6, 2024
    The reason people are impressed with fighters giving up weight is because it is a challenge to overcome. If a fighter is capable of being similar weight but purposefully wants to be light thats not the same thing. Yes he is a MW that won the LHW and HW belts that is a fact but the reasons people would consider that feat to be absurd really don't apply IMO.

    Height is the frame on which weight goes. A 5 ft 9 200 pounder is fat while a 6 ft 4 200 pounder is lean. The weight classes aren't by height but height determines how big someone can get while remaining mobile.
     
  15. Ioakeim Tzortzakis

    Ioakeim Tzortzakis Active Member Full Member

    780
    2,583
    Aug 27, 2020
    Might as well convert them even harder. Greb's amount of victories over top 10 men were something like 35 or 36. Add the Hall of Famers that didn't manage to get ranked in time, as well as early champs like McCoy or Chip, and other elite guys of the time like Wiggins, Bartfield etc. And that number of potential would have been wins over top 10 rated guys is probably higher than any fighter's ever.
     
    Greg Price99 likes this.