Originally Posted by jabsRstiff
The thread is not "what fighter was at their best when Louis beat them", either.
Louis demolished Schmeling in what was the biggest and most important fight of his, and just about every other fighter's, career. He did not have to get up off his ass and come from behind to do so. The importance of the match and the performance itself trump Walcott being a more difficult foe.....IMO.
I don't know if Walcott was that much better than the Schmeling who lost to Louis because Louis was an infintely better and primed fighter the night he smoked Schmeling. If I had to pick who'd have won between the two I'd give it to Walcott.
The second Schmelling fight was the most significant
historically, certainly better known and most one sided. But thats it.....
Your quote in bold has no relevance here. A best win
is surely a win over the best opponent a fighter faces when the opponent is also at their best
Thats why for example Sugar Ray Leonard's win over Thomas Hearns would be considered a better win
than Leonard's win over Hagler.
Not only was 1948 Walcott most likely a better heavyweight than any version of Schmelling. He was also probably better at that point than any fighter Joe Louis had ever met previously. It stands to reason that Walcott is therefore the better win. It was a huge event at the time too.
For a different example ask yourself, what was the better win for Duran? The rematch with DeJesus or the first match with Leonard? Duran was more prime for DeJesus, arguably more dominant. But Leonard would have been counted as the better win