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#1
Old 05-24-2016, 06:53 AM
Le_Mickster
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Default The current state of boxing

Hello everyone.

I was in a discussion at my boxing gym the other day, it was a nice atmosphere and we got around a lot of different subjects regarding boxing. Some of the elders discussed the state of boxing regards the number of active fighters.
They especially talked about that back in the 50s through 70s, there were many more active fighters in both the amateur and professional ranks. I'd agree with this point of view for our Danish Championships and local ones, where there used to be qualification fights, and then the quarter, semi and finals in every weight classes. But would the number of active fighters today compared to back in the days be equalized by the split of the soviet union, which made it legal for their fighters to become professionals?
So my question or discussion is historically relevant due to the comparison of older decades to current time. Is it your point of view, that there were more, less or an equal amount of fighters back in the days?

The discussion became relevant due to the subjects of - should the number of weight classes be reduced, because a fewer number of fighters is active. That and interest for boxing based of the numerous champions in the different weight classes.

I'll look forward to a discussion or hearing from you.
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#2
Old 05-24-2016, 07:51 AM
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Welcome here.

You can see a discussion on the subject right here:

http://www.boxingscene.com/forums/sh...d.php?t=672200
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#3
Old 05-24-2016, 10:27 AM
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Originally Posted by Le_Mickster View Post
Is it your point of view, that there were more, less or an equal amount of fighters back in the days?

The discussion became relevant due to the subjects of - should the number of weight classes be reduced, because a fewer number of fighters is active. That and interest for boxing based of the numerous champions in the different weight classes.

I'll look forward to a discussion or hearing from you.
I've never thought about this angle. I think for sure there were more fighters in the past eras. I mean if you look at Boxrec you'll see there is about 20,000 active fighters at any given time. And I think we are better at tracking all active boxers the world over now. And I believe I've seen talk of their being 50,000+ active fighters in the US alone at certain points in history.

So yea if there were more than 20k fighters when we had 8 or less divisions, having 17 divisions when there are only 20k fighters obviously is watering down the product. Without even comparing eras when more guys were active this modern era seems highly watered down. In particular the lower divisions in a time when the average size of people is going up.
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Old Yesterday, 05:32 AM
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There were millions of 'em. The lines outside gyms just to train often went around the corner, and there was one on every corner. Which meant the lines often got mixed together and brawls of position were common. Today a fighter makes a reservation and forgoes those rough traditions. The lines to get into some gyms were tougher than many a modern workout.

Big fights are usually late in arriving, if they are made at all. Any sets of numbers for the quantity of boxers in modern vs 1940-1970, is apt to be given. That does not make them true. What can be relied on is that boxing, the farther one goes back, was more centrally and deeply embedded in American culture. Now one can fairly say boxing is minor and periphreal.

When you have a proliferation of boxing orgs claiming champs, who each have their nearly totally distinct top tens who have hardly faced any of the top tens from the other orgs, you have weak champs and diluted contenders. That is the state it is in. Partly perhaps from lack of enrollment, and partly because they do not fight each other because they all have so few fights.
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Old Yesterday, 10:03 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Eff Pandas View Post
I've never thought about this angle. I think for sure there were more fighters in the past eras. I mean if you look at Boxrec you'll see there is about 20,000 active fighters at any given time. And I think we are better at tracking all active boxers the world over now. And I believe I've seen talk of their being 50,000+ active fighters in the US alone at certain points in history.

So yea if there were more than 20k fighters when we had 8 or less divisions, having 17 divisions when there are only 20k fighters obviously is watering down the product. Without even comparing eras when more guys were active this modern era seems highly watered down. In particular the lower divisions in a time when the average size of people is going up.
Nope. There's more boxers and fights in this era:


Quote:
Originally Posted by Bundana View Post
BoxRec's last decade update (October 23, 2014) showed these number of pro fights:

1850 2
1860 15
1870 339
1880 4607
1890 16503
1900 41984
1910 94008
1920 269461
1930 287746
1940 202824
1950 156486
1960 105133
1970 104888
1980 130861
1990 141126
2000 185882
2010 107123

So on October 23 last year, a couple of months shy of the halfway mark of this decade, BoxRec had already registered more pro fights than in each of the 60s and 70s decades.

This is hardly surprising, as the world population har doubled since the 60s, and so many more countries now allow pro boxing (since the Iron Curtain came down). So the global talent pool is obviously much larger today than 50 years ago.
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Old Yesterday, 10:23 AM
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Nope. There's more boxers and fights in this era:
Those stats are fights not fighters first off. And there seems to about 2x-3x the fights in the 1920's to the 1940's so one can assume there were more fighters in that period like I'm saying.

And second I believe it was much harder to track fighters & fights in the past so some of this info has been lost to history. Every now & again you'll hear about fights being uncovered of great fighters. I even seem to recall Joe Louis' career record had less wins when I first started following boxing iirc (seems like he had 64 wins & now he has 66) so imagine all the Joe Random Guy's who's entire careers have been lost or yet unfound.
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Old Yesterday, 10:30 AM
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How could there be less fighters today when the population has grown like brush fire? Makes no sense at all. Just look at other sports as well with new expansion teams ,to many athletes to cater too which is why boxing also has dozens of international /state /Intercontinental /etc ,etc smaller less/ irrelevant belts and numerousweight classes because they have to be filled ,less weight classes in boxing would be like throwing a piece of bread down in the park and watching 20 pigeons go after it. More competitors means its also that much tougher to stay on top in particularly combat sports .

The only weight class that actually needs refining is the HW class because asking todays fighters who weigh over 200 pounds to fight guys 230 plus is not logical .A guy who is naturally 220/225 may do good but thats 1% of the 225 plus guys who are ranked in top 100 ,and average 240 . And that actually supports the growth of boxing bc you have more than enough 230 plus fighters to either make a Super HW class in itself if they went that route .

Even with the orther combat sports like MMA and Kick Boxing that werent around then ,there would still be enough fighters all around more now to populate boxing to a higher roster .Unless someone shows me an actual graph or whatever im not buying the 1940's or whatever had more boxers competing in the pros!

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Old Yesterday, 10:48 AM
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Originally Posted by Eff Pandas View Post
Those stats are fights not fighters first off. And there seems to about 2x-3x the fights in the 1920's to the 1940's so one can assume there were more fighters in that period like I'm saying.

And second I believe it was much harder to track fighters & fights in the past so some of this info has been lost to history. Every now & again you'll hear about fights being uncovered of great fighters. I even seem to recall Joe Louis' career record had less wins when I first started following boxing iirc (seems like he had 64 wins & now he has 66) so imagine all the Joe Random Guy's who's entire careers have been lost or yet unfound.
Dude. The gap is immense. What you say is just not plausible. The World population was 2B in 1927. 3B in 1960. 4 in 1974 and 7B in 2011.

You can say that the percentile of fighters may have declined over time, but the sheer magnitude of numbers clearly suggests that there's more boxers today in absolute terms which is backed up by the statistic Bundana posted.
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Old Yesterday, 10:55 AM
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Originally Posted by juggernaut666 View Post
How could there be less fighters today when the population has grown like brush fire? Makes no sense at all.
If all you're looking at is more people therefore more boxers I don't believe you are looking at enough info. You are assuming boxing to have the same % involved thru the different eras. I don't believe that to be true & I've certainly seen nothing to suggest that to be true. I mean just cuz there was 2.5B people in the 40's & 6B people now doesn't mean there were only ~8,300 boxers in the 40's vs the ~20,000 now.

I'd say boxing is less popular in more parts of the world then it was during previous times. Sure there are some places where its more popular than its ever been, but I think the consensus with most people is that boxing hit its peak in most places for the foreseeable future. That being the case its going to be less popular & therefore have less participants. I also believe there is more competition & easier routes to other sports for athletic young peoples attention who could get into boxing.

Although **** man maybe I'm just biased cuz I'm in the US & I definitely feel like the number of boxers has went down drastically here from its best days with only ~3,000 boxers now according to boxrec.
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Old Yesterday, 11:05 AM
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Dude. The gap is immense. What you say is just not plausible. The World population was 2B in 1927. 3B in 1960. 4 in 1974 and 7B in 2011.

You can say that the percentile of fighters may have declined over time, but the sheer magnitude of numbers clearly suggests that there's more boxers today in absolute terms which is backed up by the statistic Bundana posted.
Bro you posted the #'s of fights yet say the numbers are lying. Okay looking at things right now for sure this decade we are it looks like competition with the 20's-40's period I'll admit.

But riddle me this Batman if there was a billion more people in the 1960's vs the 1920's why is there 2.5x more fights in the 1920's. And don't use the lame excuse of "well people fought more often then" cuz while that is true with the elite caliber guys we both know that 99% of these boxers were part time or part time-ish fighters who mighta had 1 fight more per year back in the day. And if there were less fighters why so many more fights for just minimal more activity by most of the guys counted.

And lets not forget that there are surely a nice % of fights that got lost to time the further back you go cuz no internet so these 1920's-1940's numbers are probably 5%-15% greater I'd speculate just to speculate to further widen the gap.

Quote:
1920 269461
1930 287746
1940 202824
1950 156486
1960 105133
1970 104888
1980 130861
1990 141126
2000 185882
2010 107123 (thru to Oct 2015 I believe)

Last edited by Eff Pandas; Yesterday at 11:07 AM.
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