View Full Version : Can Dempsey Be Rated Over Louis?


Perfect Plex
02-01-2011, 11:05 AM
Can a case even be made, or better yet does anyone actually think Dempsey should be ranked above Louis on a HW ATG list?

Barn
02-01-2011, 11:07 AM
Taking in H2H ability then yes, depending on how you see it.

Based purely on longelevity, resume and accomplishments then no way.

The Surgeon
02-01-2011, 12:25 PM
Joe has to be rated higher.

Dempsey was a terror tho and he might well knock Joe spark out if they had fought.... I think my money would be on Louis even in a head to head match tho


There was a video on here a lttle while ago with an old Dempsey and Joe fooling around in the ring on tv, the mutal respect was evident

Wild Blue Yonda
02-01-2011, 06:08 PM
Can a case even be made, or better yet does anyone actually think Dempsey should be ranked above Louis on a HW ATG list?

Possibly --- but it would have to be on the proviso your list was purely based on hypothetical head-to-head, & you had Dempsey defeating Louis (plausible enough, though I wouldn't personally bank on it, nor would most I don't believe).

Dempsey had an outstanding run pre-title, & though his reign itself was fractured, the competition was quite strong after he decapitated Willard as well. Still, Louis has his measure on accomplishments.

Steak
02-01-2011, 06:32 PM
not a chance.

Dempsey is overrated. best win over Sharkey, and he only won that through a lowblow hit on the break combo in a fight he was losing.

CarlosG815
02-01-2011, 06:47 PM
not a chance.

Dempsey is overrated. best win over Sharkey, and he only won that through a lowblow hit on the break combo in a fight he was losing.

Dempsey was thought to be the best fighter ever by those that saw him fight and they stood by this up until they died.... He wasn't called over rated until far after those who saw him were dead and gone. To call him over rated is total BS.

Steak
02-01-2011, 07:12 PM
Dempsey was thought to be the best fighter ever by those that saw him fight and they stood by this up until they died.... He wasn't called over rated until far after those who saw him were dead and gone. To call him over rated is total BS.
the best fighter ever 80+ years ago. He was in a weak era, and his best wins were over Willard, Brennan, Fulton, Firpo and Miske. Gibbons, Carpentier and Levinsky might have been good wins if they werent lightheavyweights, so I only give Dempsey partial credit for them. Gunboat Smith was past his best, dont bother bringing him up.

He didnt fight the best opponents around, since he refused to fight Langford(even he admitted this), Jeanette, McVea(these two were not during his championship reign, to be fair), and most of all Harry Wills, who was the #1 contender for forever while he was champ. His time as a world champ was wasted by him not fighting.

Theres video of his fights, you dont need to have been born while he was fighting to judge him.

Clegg
02-01-2011, 07:33 PM
He may (or, more likely, may not) beat Louis in a fight, but I don't think he beat the better fighters or proved himself to be greater.

CarlosG815
02-01-2011, 07:43 PM
the best fighter ever 80+ years ago. He was in a weak era, and his best wins were over Willard, Brennan, Fulton, Firpo and Miske. Gibbons, Carpentier and Levinsky might have been good wins if they werent lightheavyweights, so I only give Dempsey partial credit for them. Gunboat Smith was past his best, dont bother bringing him up.

He didnt fight the best opponents around, since he refused to fight Langford(even he admitted this), Jeanette, McVea(these two were not during his championship reign, to be fair), and most of all Harry Wills, who was the #1 contender for forever while he was champ. His time as a world champ was wasted by him not fighting.

Theres video of his fights, you dont need to have been born while he was fighting to judge him.

We will have to disagree. At the time a fight with Langford was proposed Jack was a nobody and declined the fight citing that he knew he wasn't ready for that caliber of fight yet, as he hadn't really fought anybody and most of his fights were in back alleys and bar rooms.

Had they fought after Dempsey was champion, there is no doubt in my mind that Dempsey would have destroyed Langford in spectacular fashion. When was the fight with Langford proposed? 1914 or something?

Steak
02-01-2011, 07:52 PM
We will have to disagree. At the time a fight with Langford was proposed Jack was a nobody and declined the fight citing that he knew he wasn't ready for that caliber of fight yet, as he hadn't really fought anybody and most of his fights were in back alleys and bar rooms.

Had they fought after Dempsey was champion, there is no doubt in my mind that Dempsey would have destroyed Langford in spectacular fashion. When was the fight with Langford proposed? 1914 or something?
I believe it was 1916.

maybe premature...maybe....but Wills is the big problem with Dempsey. Wills was pretty much the only other notable Heavyweight around at the time, and beat a few of Dempsey's best opponents, like Firpo and Fulton.

I sort of get why Dempsey didnt fight Wills, but the fact of the matter is that Dempsey never fought the only other very good heavyweight of his era.

Willard isnt even that big of a win either, since Willard hadnt fought in 3 years.

The_Demon
02-01-2011, 07:55 PM
No chance,Dempsey might have a chance h2h but in every other aspect louis is clearly the greater fighter,and i feel you can make a strong case for him being the GOAT at heavyweight

Clegg
02-01-2011, 07:56 PM
I believe it was 1916.

maybe premature...maybe....but Wills is the big problem with Dempsey. Wills was pretty much the only other notable Heavyweight around at the time, and beat a few of Dempsey's best opponents, like Firpo and Fulton.

I sort of get why Dempsey didnt fight Wills, but the fact of the matter is that Dempsey never fought the only other very good heavyweight of his era.

Willard isnt even that big of a win either, since Willard hadnt fought in 3 years.

Didn't Dempsey attempt to fight Willis but his promoter stopped it because of Willis being black?

I'm not saying that's what happened, but that's what I've seen claimed multiple times, for what it's worth.

CarlosG815
02-01-2011, 08:05 PM
Didn't Dempsey attempt to fight Willis but his promoter stopped it because of Willis being black?

I'm not saying that's what happened, but that's what I've seen claimed multiple times, for what it's worth.

Yes, this is the truth. Langford was premature, and a fight with Wills was never made because "There is not a nickel to be made in having a black champion." Would Wills have beaten Dempsey? I highly doubt it. Right now haters would be rattling off all the reasons that Dempsey destroyed Wills had they fought and Dempsey killed him.

There is a reason we didn't have another black heavy until Joe Louis, and it had nothing to do with the fact that Dempsey was scared. That is totally laughable to believe that Dempsey was afraid of any man or that he ducked anybody. If the fight didn't happen it was because of the racism and politics of boxing at the time.

People who don't know anything about Dempsey are quick to throw out the same tired argument when in reality it has no basis because these are just fights that couldn't happen at the time because they didn't make sense financially and at the end of the day boxing is business and always has been. Perhaps moreso at that time than even today, where fighters at least get what they deserve...

RubenSonny
02-01-2011, 08:06 PM
Didn't Dempsey attempt to fight Willis but his promoter stopped it because of Willis being black?

I'm not saying that's what happened, but that's what I've seen claimed multiple times, for what it's worth.

Yes he attempted but the fight fell through, cant remember why but due to promoters or something. He could've been a bit more willing to face Wills IMO when Wills try to stop him from fighting Firpo which was a justified action IMO, Dempsey refused to make the match with Wills after that.

RubenSonny
02-01-2011, 08:09 PM
Yes, this is the truth. Langford was premature, and a fight with Wills was never made because "There is not a nickel to be made in having a black champion." Would Wills have beaten Dempsey? I highly doubt it. Right now haters would be rattling off all the reasons that Dempsey destroyed Wills had they fought and Dempsey killed him.

There is a reason we didn't have another black heavy until Joe Louis, and it had nothing to do with the fact that Dempsey was scared. That is totally laughable to believe that Dempsey was afraid of any man or that he ducked anybody. If the fight didn't happen it was because of the racism and politics of boxing at the time.

People who don't know anything about Dempsey are quick to throw out the same tired argument when in reality it has no basis because these are just fights that couldn't happen at the time because they didn't make sense financially and at the end of the day boxing is business and always has been. Perhaps moreso at that time than even today, where fighters at least get what they deserve...

“The hell I feared no man. There was one man I wouldn’t fight because I knew he would flatten me. I was afraid of Sam Langford.” - Jack Dempsey.

CarlosG815
02-01-2011, 08:13 PM
“The hell I feared no man. There was one man I wouldn’t fight because I knew he would flatten me. I was afraid of Sam Langford.” - Jack Dempsey.

What year did Dempsey make this claim?

Steak
02-01-2011, 08:20 PM
I dont care if there 'wasnt any money to be made'. Wills was the only other good HW of his era, and he didnt fight him. and thats a big negative on his career.

I feel the same way about Jack Johnson.

Marchegiano
02-01-2011, 08:21 PM
the best fighter ever 80+ years ago. He was in a weak era, and his best wins were over Willard, Brennan, Fulton, Firpo and Miske. Gibbons, Carpentier and Levinsky might have been good wins if they werent lightheavyweights, so I only give Dempsey partial credit for them. Gunboat Smith was past his best, dont bother bringing him up.

He didnt fight the best opponents around, since he refused to fight Langford(even he admitted this), Jeanette, McVea(these two were not during his championship reign, to be fair), and most of all Harry Wills, who was the #1 contender for forever while he was champ. His time as a world champ was wasted by him not fighting.

Theres video of his fights, you dont need to have been born while he was fighting to judge him.

lol weak era he says. :rofl:

RubenSonny
02-01-2011, 08:25 PM
What year did Dempsey make this claim?

I think he was retired when he said it.

Steak
02-01-2011, 08:31 PM
lol weak era he says. :rofl:
you could giggle and laugh about nothing, or you could actually try to make a point.

The division was full of natural light heavyweights or lower, and the reigning world champ hadnt fought in near 3 years.

louis54
02-01-2011, 09:10 PM
could dempsey be rated over louis, sure. guys like schemling and baer who fought joe and sparred with dempsey thought dempsey would have won, as well as sharkey. louis fought better guys however, but dempsey did defeat some good fighters. i rate louis over dempsey but i could see where someone would pick dempsey. thats how good dempsey was.

louis54
02-01-2011, 09:17 PM
as far as wills-dempsey actually the guy to blame was tex richard as far as why it didnt happen. he told acquaintances he would never promote a heavyweight championship bout with the chance of riots beaking out such as after the jeffries-johnson bout where scores were killed, between a white champ and black challenger. it took mike jacobs to do so.

Wild Blue Yonda
02-01-2011, 09:26 PM
Irish, it is flat ridiculous the way you dismiss the men Dempsey flattened, especially his pre-title foes. That was an excellent run, by any era's standards, Dempsey went on.

Steak
02-01-2011, 09:50 PM
Fulton=good win.
Brennan=good win
Miske=good win
Meehan=good win, even though Dempsey only beat him once out of what, 5 fights?

well? did he beat anyone else pre-title?

Marchegiano
02-01-2011, 10:04 PM
Dude, I was laughing at your word choice. I knew you meant non-competitive, but what you said was weak. No one during 1914-1927 was weak. Louis always beats Dempsey in my book, but I wouldn't call the average ****er from the 20's weak.

Steak
02-01-2011, 10:26 PM
I certainly dont think the average HW from the 1920s is any better than any other era, thats for sure.
and when it gets down to it, Dempsey did not beat that many top opponents. he got the title from someone who hadnt boxed in 3 years, his by far toughest opponent he never fought, and a few of his best wins were over natural light heavyweights.

Wild Blue Yonda
02-02-2011, 01:41 AM
Fulton=good win.
Brennan=good win
Miske=good win
Meehan=good win, even though Dempsey only beat him once out of what, 5 fights?

well? did he beat anyone else pre-title?

Beginning in 1917, Dempsey cut a swathe through several of the finest in the division --- he bested Meehan, Smith (2x), Morris (3x), Flynn, Brennan, Levinsky & Miske. That is as good a run as had been seen by any eventual HW Champion prior to Dempsey's time, & it should duly rate above the corresponding period of Louis' career, for one.

Some of those men weren't even a match for Dempsey's fury & under-estimated skill-set at the time. Can you name another HW in the world at that time to beat someone like Morris, or for that matter Brennan, in similar fashion? I wager you cannot. No one in Brennan's prime got near to putting him away, sans Dempsey himself (which he would later repeat, only a year or two on). Morris was similarly impervious to some very capable fighters, yet was beaten in every conceivable manner through three fights (out-pointed, frustrated & out-fought to the point of DQ, & flat KO'd).

Regarding your second post, you mentioned Wills was, "by far," Dempsey's toughest contemporary, & he didn't face him.

Wills was, "by far," better than Tunney?

Wills was, "by far," better than Sharkey?

Wills was, "by far," better than Gibbons?

Carpentier?

Firpo?

Brennan?

Meehan?

Morris?

Spartacus Sully
02-02-2011, 02:23 AM
What year did Dempsey make this claim?

Whos knows..... its from a biography either dempseys or langfords im not sure.

though it was june 1916 that dempsey declined a fight with langford and possibly when the quote was first said.

Steak
02-02-2011, 02:48 AM
Beginning in 1917, Dempsey cut a swathe through several of the finest in the division --- he bested Meehan, Smith (2x), Morris (3x), Flynn, Brennan, Levinsky & Miske. That is as good a run as had been seen by any eventual HW Champion prior to Dempsey's time, & it should duly rate above the corresponding period of Louis' career, for one.

Some of those men weren't even a match for Dempsey's fury & under-estimated skill-set at the time. Can you name another HW in the world at that time to beat someone like Morris, or for that matter Brennan, in similar fashion? I wager you cannot. No one in Brennan's prime got near to putting him away, sans Dempsey himself (which he would later repeat, only a year or two on). Morris was similarly impervious to some very capable fighters, yet was beaten in every conceivable manner through three fights (out-pointed, frustrated & out-fought to the point of DQ, & flat KO'd).

Regarding your second post, you mentioned Wills was, "by far," Dempsey's toughest contemporary, & he didn't face him.

Wills was, "by far," better than Tunney?

Wills was, "by far," better than Sharkey?

Wills was, "by far," better than Gibbons?

Carpentier?

Firpo?

Brennan?

Meehan?

Morris?
Smith, Morris and especialy Flynn were all past prime, and hardly top fighters anymore...at that point they were fodder for other fighters to feed on.
did Dempsey beat them more impressively than anyone else? definitely. he was the best of that era. but they were still not really top fighters anymore.

As Ive already said, I dont give much credit to Dempsey for the Sharkey win, since Sharkey had the fight in control before the low blow hit on the break combo. Winning fights through illegal blows isnt really my thing.

Yes, I would say that Wills was 'by far' better than everyone but Tunney and Sharkey. He beat Fulton just as good as Dempsey did, and you could even say he beat Firpo more one sidedly than Dempsey did, since he wasnt dropped in the fight and completely dominated him, despite not getting the knockout. And those are two of Dempsey's greatest wins right there.

my point isnt that Wills was better than Dempsey...because I dont think I would even say that. Im saying that Wills was by far better than anyone Dempsey legitimately beat and was the #1 contender for years, above everyone else, and Dempsey never fought him.

Louis had a far better pre-title career than Dempsey. he beat Massera, Ramagex2, Perroni, Brown, Carnera(former champ), King Levinsky, Max Baer(former champ), Retzlaff, Sharkey(past prime), Ettore, and Bob Pastor.
Sure, a loss to Schmeling in there. but Schmeling would hold the HW title, and Dempsey, after all, did get KOed by an old Flynn. Louis pretty obviously had a better pre-title career. even pretending Flynn, Morris and Smith were still top fighters Louis fought the better competition, even beating 3 former HW champs in the process.

I give Dempsey credit for his wins over Willard, Brennan, Fulton, Firpo and Miske. and a little less credit for his wins over Gibbons, Carpentier and Levinsky. and maybe a smidgen of credit for his wins over Meehen(even though that was only one win out of 5 or so fights). and he was the best of his era. but he didnt beat that many good fighters, and didnt fight his best competition.

Marchegiano
02-02-2011, 07:55 AM
No, your still missing my point. I didn't mean average fighter. I meant average person. People were generally and genuinely tougher. You can argue it, but it's common knowledge. Ask any old ****er he'll tell you whats up. Bowen vs Burke 1893 will never happen again because no one's bringing that type of constitution. Correct me if i'm off, but didn't they start to limit rounds to 15 until sometime in after Louis vs Simon? To call them weak is stupid, and to continue to defend your poor word choice is stupid. Like I said I was laughing at the words you chose to express yourself; not the point in said expression. Just because Demspey never went more rounds then allowed today doesn't mean the era didn't.

Wild Blue Yonda
02-02-2011, 08:34 AM
Smith, Morris and especialy Flynn were all past prime, and hardly top fighters anymore...at that point they were fodder for other fighters to feed on.
did Dempsey beat them more impressively than anyone else? definitely. he was the best of that era. but they were still not really top fighters anymore.

As Ive already said, I dont give much credit to Dempsey for the Sharkey win, since Sharkey had the fight in control before the low blow hit on the break combo. Winning fights through illegal blows isnt really my thing.

Yes, I would say that Wills was 'by far' better than everyone but Tunney and Sharkey. He beat Fulton just as good as Dempsey did, and you could even say he beat Firpo more one sidedly than Dempsey did, since he wasnt dropped in the fight and completely dominated him, despite not getting the knockout. And those are two of Dempsey's greatest wins right there.

my point isnt that Wills was better than Dempsey...because I dont think I would even say that. Im saying that Wills was by far better than anyone Dempsey legitimately beat and was the #1 contender for years, above everyone else, and Dempsey never fought him.

Louis had a far better pre-title career than Dempsey. he beat Massera, Ramagex2, Perroni, Brown, Carnera(former champ), King Levinsky, Max Baer(former champ), Retzlaff, Sharkey(past prime), Ettore, and Bob Pastor.
Sure, a loss to Schmeling in there. but Schmeling would hold the HW title, and Dempsey, after all, did get KOed by an old Flynn. Louis pretty obviously had a better pre-title career. even pretending Flynn, Morris and Smith were still top fighters Louis fought the better competition, even beating 3 former HW champs in the process.

I give Dempsey credit for his wins over Willard, Brennan, Fulton, Firpo and Miske. and a little less credit for his wins over Gibbons, Carpentier and Levinsky. and maybe a smidgen of credit for his wins over Meehen(even though that was only one win out of 5 or so fights). and he was the best of his era. but he didnt beat that many good fighters, and didnt fight his best competition.

I believe your initial point was not that Wills was much better than anyone Dempsey beat, but rather, much better than anyone Dempsey faced. Both are incorrect, as Dempsey beat Sharkey (at least Wills' equal), & fought Tunney (Wills' superior).

BigStereotype
02-02-2011, 11:32 AM
I wouldn't and I'm having a lot of trouble seeing a case for it, based on resume and skills. Head to head, I'd pick Louis to KO Dempsey, but that's not a sure thing at all. The opposite could happen pretty easily, too. But for their careers, I'd say Louis was the superior fighter.