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Fans Vote On Best Fighter of The Past 25 Years
Over the past few weeks i've been polling boxing fans and journalists on who they believe the best fighter of the past 25 years has been. The votes have now been counted and from the thousands of votes received, we have a definitive top 10.
I have to admit that the final tally has somewhat surprised me. I expected it to come down to Floyd Mayweather and Manny Pacquiao with my personal vote going to the Filipino icon. However, it was a pleasant surprise to see the fighters from the 90's get the recognition they deserve. Several of the greats from that era did very well.
The top 10 as voted by the fans is as follows...
1. Roy Jones Jr.
2. Manny Pacquiao
3. Floyd Mayweather Jr.
4. Joe Calzaghe
5. Mike Tyson
6. Pernell Whitaker
7. Julio Cesar Chavez
8. Lennox Lewis
9. Bernard Hopkins
10. Evander Holyfield
Roy Jones, voted our best fighter of the past 25 years. Jones in his prime was viewed by most as an unstoppable force who possessed lighting speed that could not be rivaled by anyone in the sport. Jones was a powerful fighter who could pretty much hurt an opponent at will. However, often times he would fight in his safety-first style and cruise to decision wins. The fight I remember most from Roy's career (apart from the shocking ending in the second Tarver fight) is his fight with Virgil Hill where he stopped the former champion with a body shot in the 4th round. The sound that punch made when it landed was like a shotgun going off.
Like all great fighters Roy had his critics. While Roy had many fans, a lot of people viewed him as a reluctant champion who often did not face the opponents that they wanted to see him get in there with. Whether you liked him or not, there's no doubting that is Roy Jones is a personified all-time great and a sure fire Hall of Famer.
Obviously a lot of boxing purists will disagree with the list and it wouldn't be in line with my own top 10 but there's a saying in boxing and it goes "the fans are the real judges".
Over the past few weeks - the fans have spoken.