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Old 12-04-2012, 11:05 PM #31
The Gambler1981 The Gambler1981 is offline
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Originally Posted by New England View Post
i think a great fighter who sticks around for long enough will eventually be tested. if there are other great fighters at the weight class they will test him in his prime. it's rare to see great fighters at the same weight class in the prime of their careers. if he's really so good that he can't he touched, or there are no other great fighters around, he has to slow down. once he slows, a great fighter will usually find other means of getting to the victory.


greatness is based on accomplishments. there are "types" of great careers and accomplishment. some guys do so much in their primes that they're considered greats based on their work there. others have gone to the well after their primes, and pulled out fights against younger fighters to enhance their resume.


theoretically, a fighter could be so good that he'd never be challenged. if roy jones were to retire after beating john ruiz he would have been a hall of famer. late period wladimir klitchko may never see a hard fight. when he faced adversity early in his career against purrity, sanders, and brewster, he lost. but after he hit his stride he put together a streak that will probably put him in the top 15 of most people's all time list at HW.
Pretty much, there are many ways to the top and you have to keep an open mind about it.

It is the old Sandy Koufax or Nolan Ryan who is better debate, do you want a guy who was untouchable for a short period or do you want a guy who was always very good over decades. In boxing there are even more iterations of possible paths, does a guy dominate one class or does a guy do a bit in several, does a guy start out not very good but turns into an outstanding fighter, does a guy start out like a house on fire then fades quickly and that is just scratching the surface.
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Old 12-04-2012, 11:23 PM #32
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Originally Posted by BoxingGenius27 View Post
It seems in order to be considered the greatest of all time or one of the greats, you have to either have wars, go life and death with various opponents or at least lose a few times throughout your career.

Without getting too specific and naming names, rarely do you see someone dominate several divisions over an extended period of time and get credit for it. Normally, (insert fighter) list of opponents somehow get discredited along the way.

So the main point/concern at hand is should we advise this new generation not to win to convincingly, but in turn try to have at least 2-3 "wars" with a top ranked opponent and look like they're struggling so their legacy can go down in history as one of the greats?

Feel free to discuss.
In order for many fans to consider a boxer to be one of the greats, their fights (or elements of their careers) have to bring excitement and have a narrative that they readily identify with. For instance, if a Cotto beats a Margarito then it reinforces the idea that in life, there's a possibility of redemption. If Foreman knocks out Moorer then there's hope against the inevitable infirmity of old age. We become emotionally attached to fighters and fights that represent something that is more than mere boxing; an idea that we hold dear. These fights and fighters (and the meanings we attach to them) resonate with us so we're more likely to consider them for greatness even in the absence of great skills.

What rarely resonates with many, and what is difficult to identify with, is when a fighter is so technically proficient that any excitement, drama or tension normally inherent in fighting is superseded by boredom, domination and even ridicule. The wider notions attached to such bouts are read as oppressive rather than uplifting. In the absence of even contests we are left instead with cruel but never the less technically brilliant one-sided performances. But as a significant portion of fans don't watch the sport primarily for it's technical aspects, then watching a Mayweather Vs Marquez/Mosley for example becomes an unsettling experience.

For those fans, the absence of a contest in which both fighters are tested is a straight up con. So it isn't a question of a fighter making it look like they're struggling so they can win those fans around because that would be seen as a deception to cover a deception. Rather, what they have to do is engage with fighters that are capable of testing them to bring the drama and meaning that those fans desire.
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Old 12-05-2012, 12:19 AM #33
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Being in a war and being faced with adversity are two different things. Guys like Pernell Whitaker and Roy Jones were never really in any wars during their prime but faced adversity multiple times. What you're really getting at is an issue that has more to do with a fighter's style. Reminds me of a 2003 Ring mag article where the writer noted that, following his win over Ruiz, a reporter asked Jones, "Did you think it was going to be this easy?" To which Jones replied with, "It wasn't easy at all."
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Old 12-05-2012, 12:26 AM #34
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Originally Posted by IMDAZED View Post
Being in a war and being faced with adversity are two different things. Guys like Pernell Whitaker and Roy Jones were never really in any wars during their prime but faced adversity multiple times. What you're really getting at is an issue that has more to do with a fighter's style. Reminds me of a 2003 Ring mag article where the writer noted that, following his win over Ruiz, a reporter asked Jones, "Did you think it was going to be this easy?" To which Jones replied with, "It wasn't easy at all."
Indeed, looking easy and being easy are two totally different things. Also that doesn't even take into account preparation which is a huge part of success but very few even get to see and to be properly prepared for a fight takes a ton of very hard work.
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Old 12-05-2012, 12:45 AM #35
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Indeed, looking easy and being easy are two totally different things. Also that doesn't even take into account preparation which is a huge part of success but very few even get to see and to be properly prepared for a fight takes a ton of very hard work.
Exactly. And I think that's what Jones was getting at. Making it look easy in boxing is frowned upon, usually because the fighters who do that tend to be the most arrogant. Can you blame them? But personalities aside, you find that in any field of employment. I don't agree with the notion that you penalize the student who maximizes his potential by pairing God-given talent with incredible work ethic, and thus performs better when tested. As opposed to the others who can't quite match them in one of those two departments. It's a phenomena that's applauded daily in classrooms everywhere.
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Old 12-05-2012, 01:32 AM #36
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Made me think of Roy Jones Jr.... after his fight at HW which he made look easy, I felt like no one will ever top him and still believe he is the greatest i ever saw...
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Old 12-05-2012, 01:46 AM #37
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Originally Posted by BoxingGenius27 View Post
It seems in order to be considered the greatest of all time or one of the greats, you have to either have wars, go life and death with various opponents or at least lose a few times throughout your career.

Without getting too specific and naming names, rarely do you see someone dominate several divisions over an extended period of time and get credit for it. Normally, (insert fighter) list of opponents somehow get discredited along the way.

So the main point/concern at hand is should we advise this new generation not to win to convincingly, but in turn try to have at least 2-3 "wars" with a top ranked opponent and look like they're struggling so their legacy can go down in history as one of the greats?

Feel free to discuss.
Simple answer no. I do think though that it is inevitable to face adversity. I think a prime example is the Klitschkos. They seem to win with ease but are fighting anybody available. I'm not fan of them and will admit they're in a crappy era, but I truly believe in 10 years we'll all like them a lot more.

But for the record for some reason I got a Mayweather-esque feeling from your post and while I love and respect Money, you do have to fight everyone to run into adversity. He's fought four times in the last five years, and while I can defend every fight, it's not the kind of stuff of legends.
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