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#1
Old 10-22-2012, 02:34 PM
Welsh Jon
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Default Todays athletes aren't always better

A common arguement for those who believe that the boxing greats of the past would be enable to compete with their counterparts of today is that athletes have evolved beyond comparison due to modern nutrition and sports science and the like. I don't believe this is quite true though.

Yes in events that reward pure strength or pure speed, such as weightlifting and sprinting the records of the past bear no comparison to the records of today. Today's athletes are stronger and faster. But if you look at athletic events that rely on technique as well as power or speed the records do not fall as quickly, there is not such a chasm between todays records and previous records.

Jesse Owens was an all-time great Olympian. His times in the 100 metres sprint, an event based on pure speed, are laughable when compared to the top sprinters today. His world record from 1936 of 10.2 would not have seen him anywhere near qualifying for the Olympic final this year in London. But in the long jump, a technical event which rewards speed only when applied with good technique the world record Jesse Owens set in 1935 of 8.13 would actually have enabled Owens to have medalled in London. This years Olympic bronze medallist Will Claye of USA jumped 8.12 metres. Britains gold medal winner Greg Rutherford jumped 8.31, a distance that could have been bettered by long jumpers of the 1960's. In fact the long jump world record has not progressed since Mike Powell jumped 8.95 in 1991 and the Olympic record has not progressed since Bob Beamon jumped 8.90 metres in 1968. That jump from Beamon was a world record for 23 years.

It's not just the long jump. In other technical disciplines world records often go many years without being broken. In the triple jump Jonathan Edwards world record has stood for 12 years. Only 9 men have been able to better the distance of 17.89 that was first set by Brazilian Joao Carlos Oliveria 37 years ago. The high jump record has not been broken since 1993. The height jumped to win this years Olympics could have been bettered by high jumpers from the 1970's.

Boxing is a technical discipline. It is not always the quickest or the strongest that wins. It is about how you use your speed and how you use strength. If 1930's Jesse Owens is capable of beating most of todays long jumpers then I don't see why Benny Leonard would be incapable of beating todays lightweights. Or why Joe Louis would be unable to beat todays heavyweights.
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#2
Old 10-22-2012, 03:01 PM
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Theyre not exactly stronger or faster. Lifting weights (other than very light weights) does not increase punching power or speed.

What seperates the old timers from these new p*ssyfooters is that the old timers actually came to fight. And they actually have skill, technique, veriety. Everyone uses the same style now a days and the technique is no where near as good as it was with fighters back then.

Its like their scared to punch each other. And when they do a throw a punch it doesnt even have the technique of the old fighters to do damage. All you have to do is sit back and analyze them and youll see the difference. Many techniques have been long and forgotten. Boxers are nothing what they were back then (other than a few exceptions). Boxing has been a steady decline if you watch it through out time, and its the trainers who breed fighters then those fighters become trainers and so on.
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#3
Old 10-22-2012, 07:09 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Welsh Jon View Post
Boxing is a technical discipline. It is not always the quickest or the strongest that wins. It is about how you use your speed and how you use strength. If 1930's Jesse Owens is capable of beating most of todays long jumpers then I don't see why Benny Leonard would be incapable of beating todays lightweights. Or why Joe Louis would be unable to beat todays heavyweights.
It's refreshing to read common sense on these boards. Good show.


In before the idiots with "modern nutrition modern training protein shakes blah blah blah".
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#4
Old 10-22-2012, 08:21 PM
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Yeah I was just going to say that too. This is a well thought out, well worded, intelligent post backed up by facts. If posts like this continue, then Welsh Jon would be quite welcome here.

Now if we could only get salespeople, business owners and politicians to be this clear lol.
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#5
Old 10-23-2012, 04:00 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Welsh Jon View Post
Jesse Owens was an all-time great Olympian. His times in the 100 metres sprint, an event based on pure speed, are laughable when compared to the top sprinters today. His world record from 1936 of 10.2 would not have seen him anywhere near qualifying for the Olympic final this year in London. But in the long jump, a technical event which rewards speed only when applied with good technique the world record Jesse Owens set in 1935 of 8.13 would actually have enabled Owens to have medalled in London. This years Olympic bronze medallist Will Claye of USA jumped 8.12 metres. Britains gold medal winner Greg Rutherford jumped 8.31, a distance that could have been bettered by long jumpers of the 1960's. In fact the long jump world record has not progressed since Mike Powell jumped 8.95 in 1991 and the Olympic record has not progressed since Bob Beamon jumped 8.90 metres in 1968. That jump from Beamon was a world record for 23 years. .
You prove my point. Jesse freaking Owens the guy people considered the best athlete in the world in 1936(pretty sure nobody considers Greg Rutherford one of the top 1000 athletes in 2012) would be 3rd place finisher in 2012. To provide some context the silver medalist in 1936 would of finished 9th in 2012 and a few of the rest of the competitors are barely qualifying.

So in conclusion yeah maybe the absolute by far #1 best fighter in the world from the 30s or 40s could maybe be competitive today, 2nd best highly doubtful, 3rd best extremely doubtful, and the rest not even close.

I also think its perfectly plausible that a few of the best athletes in 1968 could still be the best today, the 30s and 40s not so much.
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#6
Old 10-23-2012, 04:18 AM
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Could not agree more.
Very lucid post.

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#7
Old 10-23-2012, 12:54 PM
Cardinal Buck
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SCtrojansbaby View Post
You prove my point. Jesse freaking Owens the guy people considered the best athlete in the world in 1936(pretty sure nobody considers Greg Rutherford one of the top 1000 athletes in 2012) would be 3rd place finisher in 2012. To provide some context the silver medalist in 1936 would of finished 9th in 2012 and a few of the rest of the competitors are barely qualifying.

So in conclusion yeah maybe the absolute by far #1 best fighter in the world from the 30s or 40s could maybe be competitive today, 2nd best highly doubtful, 3rd best extremely doubtful, and the rest not even close.

I also think its perfectly plausible that a few of the best athletes in 1968 could still be the best today, the 30s and 40s not so much.
gonna have to roll with this post
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#8
Old 10-23-2012, 01:04 PM
Cardinal Buck
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It's simplistic to say that boxing is strictly technical. And boxers today vary in how much they rely on athleticism vs skill. Lastly, it's a stretch to dig up an example or two supporting your claim and come to a conclusion. Football is as technical as any sport and players are better today.
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#9
Old 10-23-2012, 01:23 PM
Ray Corso
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Bigger, Faster, Stronger.............Dumber! Just watch the total techniques used by Sugar Ray Robinson and tell me WHO of todays boxers uses the Methods & Techniques used by him. Add in His Conditioning & Power and who matches up with his Total Commitment to Win!
Again watch the boxing science employed by Joe Louis, his form and style isn't duplicated by anyone today.
Theres boxers today who have the skills to be considered great fighters but they lack the desire and willingness to "commit" to their fights. The top level fighters earn alot of money so their attitude changes once they attain some wealth. Its a different game today and theres no need for a fighter to extend themselves. The champions today don't go to the top twenty competitors towns and box them in non-title bouts. They don't have to defend their BS Titles frequently and they don't progress their talents once they attain some success! The greatest fighters in history fought weekly and monthly and had opportunities to enhance their skills.
Just as in most sports when the athletes become entertainers the sport gets watered down by mediocrity!!!! Boxings no different! Ray.
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#10
Old 10-23-2012, 03:14 PM
SBleeder
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cardinal Buck View Post
Football is as technical as any sport and players are better today.
Says who? What's your basis for comparison?
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