Via Ken Hissner: This writer recalls when three great boxers passed their peak as too many boxers but continued to box for whatever reason only to lose. Knowing that if they hang around for too long, bad fighters will probably beat them; they accept these wars often for “money!” In these three cases, I am not saying the winners are inferior or not.
The first thing that came to mind was in October 1951 at Madison Square Garden in New York. In one corner is the former champion considered by many to be and still is one of two if not the greatest heavyweight champion of all time. His name is “Brown Bomber”. Yes, Joe Louisit was 66-2 with 52 stops.
Although Louis was on an eight-match winning streak since losing to Ezzard “The Cincinnati Cobra” Charles, 66-5-1, by decision in September 1950 at Yankee Stadium, Bronx, New York, losing his title. world champion, but he was past his prime at the age of 35.
Louis had won eight previous games that night in October, only two of which ended in a goal against opponents like Argentina’s Cesar Brion, 29-3, by decision in two of them. those times.
Three stops were Freddy Beshore, 28-10-1, Andy Walker, 17-8-1, and Lee Savold, 104-44-4 (whom the British Board still recognizes as world champion) . In his previous bout before this one in October, Louis defeated Jimmy Bivins, 78-20-1, who was considered a “temporary champion” when Louis was in the army while still champion. world but failed to defend his title.
That night in October, Louis faced undefeated Rocky Marciano, 37-0 with 33 saves, from Brockton, Mass. His biggest win before this night was knocking out Rex Layne, 34-1-2, in July.
After seven rounds, Marciano took the lead on the scoreboard with a score of 4-2, 5-2 and 4-3.
In the 1/8 round, Marciano beat Louis with a left hook to break 8 points by referee Rudy Goldstein. As he was rising, Louis was met with a series of punches from Marciano, which sent him through the ropes forcing referee Goldstein to stop the match without scoring. This will be Louis’ last match. It is rumored that Marciano cried in the dressing room after defeating “his hero” Joe Louis.
Five matches and 11 months later, Marciano was behind in his first title fight 7-4, 8-4 and 7-5, defeating world champion “Jersey” Joe Walcott, 49-18- 1, in the thirteenth round. , and the rest is history ending his career 49-0 with 43 saves in September 1955 defeating light heavyweight champion Archie “Old Mongoose” Moore, 149-19- 8, in the ninth round after hitting his own head in the second round.
Another match was in October 1980 when the WBC world heavyweight champion Larry “Easton Assassin” Holmes, 35-0, at Caesars Palace, Las Vegas, Nevada, during his seventh title defense against 38-year-old WBA world champion Muhammad “The Greatest” Ali, 56-3. Ali hasn’t fought since regaining his title, defeating Leon Spinks, 7-0-1, about 25 months before this night.
This writer recalls being at Ali’s training camp in nearby Deer Lake, PA, watching him sit there after a fight simply looking “fat!” Not wanting him to join this fight, I said, “look at your form. You and Max Baer are physically the best of the heavyweight champions but look at you now. Why are you joining this war? ‘ He padded his fat belly and said, ‘I love my ice cream!
Although 3 ½ pounds lighter than in the battle of Spinks, Ali is definitely just a shell of himself. In ten innings, Holmes barely gave Ali the lead 100-89 and 100-90 twice on the scoreboard. That would be the only time in his post-sixties fighting career when Ali gave up.
Although Holmes at the time asked referee Richard Green to stop the fight, he continued to enter Ali’s body and head defenseless. Dr. Ferdie Pacheco who worked in Ali’s career refused to work for Ali after the battle of Spinks and said he should never fight again.
Unlike Marciano who expressed regret after defeating Louis, Holmes declares he is now “the greatest!” Holmes’s arrogance is different from Marciano’s arrogance. Ali would fight again, losing to Trevor Berbick, 19-2-1, in December 1981, by decision. Ali finished 56-5 with 37 saves at the age of 39.
In January 1988, Holmes, 48-2, after a loss to light heavyweight champion Michael “Jinx” Spinks, about 21 months earlier in the final bout, was beaten by “Iron” Mike Tyson, 32- 0, destroy. in four laps after being chased down crashed twice. The second knock sent Holmes into the air as he smacked the canvas in the back, prompting referee Joe Cortez to wave at 2:55 of the round.
However, on the third game, this writer does not say that the overall winner is better than the loser, who has held three world championships despite a former champion that night, certainly a One of the greatest games of all time. But the winner, in this writer’s opinion, is the greatest boxer of all time.
The former champion is Henry “Hank kills” Armstrongwho was at 132-17-8 that night, was stopped only twice in his career, once at the start of his career and again to lose his weightlifting title to Fritzie Zivic 103-24 -6, about three years ago than that night. .
Their previous fight was when Armstrong lost the title to Zivic. On that night, the person behind the debut was none other than “Sugar” Ray Robinson.
After stopping Joe Echevarria, 4-17-4, in the second round that night, he rushed outside to watch “his idol” Armstrong lose the title to Zivic and vowed to one day beat Zivic. He never got that chance, but Armstrong beat Zivic in their third meeting in October 1942 when both were former champions.
At Madison Square Garden in New York, Armstrong, with a seven-fight victory at the age of thirty-three, met a future world champion named “Sugar” Ray Robinson, 44-1, twenty-two years old. Robinson would win all ten rounds and admit afterwards that he sometimes allows his idol Armstrong to hang on to him, not wanting to move on.
It wasn’t until December 1946 when Robinson, 73-1-1, had a chance to be crowned world champion when he excelled in the second round to win by defeating world weight champion Tommy Bell, 39-10-3, whom he knocked out in his eleventh win by 8-6 and 10-5 twice, at Madison Square Garden.
Robinson ended his career in November 1965, losing to Joey Archer, 44-1, with eight stops, over ten laps at the Pittsburgh Civic Arena. Robinson would end his career 174-19-6 with 109 stops.
Armstrong finished his career with a 149-21-10 record of 99 stops in February 1945, losing to Chester Slider, 37-18-12, at the Auditorium in Oakland, CA, despite a determined crowd booed. determined.