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Old 10-03-2011, 10:50 AM
davros2010
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Default Boxing's popularity 50 years ago?

How did the global popularity of boxing 50 years ago compare to today? In America how popular was boxing in general and how did its popularity compare with other sports around that time? I remember reading my Sonny Liston vs Floyd Patterson programme where it confidently claimed that boxing was the no1 sport in the world (when Americans say that the normally mean in their own country rather than the world). Is boxing on a terminal decline in America to minority sport status? Also what do you believe is the cause of boxing’s decline in America?
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Old 10-03-2011, 02:49 PM
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Originally Posted by davros2010 View Post
How did the global popularity of boxing 50 years ago compare to today? In America how popular was boxing in general and how did its popularity compare with other sports around that time? I remember reading my Sonny Liston vs Floyd Patterson programme where it confidently claimed that boxing was the no1 sport in the world (when Americans say that the normally mean in their own country rather than the world). Is boxing on a terminal decline in America to minority sport status? Also what do you believe is the cause of boxing’s decline in America?
I can't comment about it's global popularity at that time, but it was much more popular in America than it is now. Its decline is do to multiple weight divisions, titles and day before weigh ins. All water down boxing's claim as a serious sport and its credibility is questioned because of it's lack of organization.
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Old 10-03-2011, 05:05 PM
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It's less popular across the globe. Although still reasonably good in places like Japan, Perto Rico etc, it just doesn't come close to what it once was. There are so many reasons. The corrupt nature of boxing and the greed associated with it, the lack of real champions in a division, the fact that at the lower level of the sport there is no money and the amateur game has become crap.

Too many reasons to list here. It is significantly less popular today sadly. It was, once upon a time, one of the biggest sports on earth with it's fighters recognised across the globe. Today the average Joe hasn't heard of any of it's stars unless it is associated with 50 cent, Hayden Panetiereiterrtieessgbh, and various other mainstream stars or because of outside shenanigans with the law etc.
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Old 10-03-2011, 07:34 PM
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I hope someone remembers the numbers but 50 years ago there were something like 150 boxing gyms in NYC. There are about 3 now. That should tell you everything you need to know, at least about the popularity in America.

**those numbers are off the top of my head I don't recall the actual number**
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Old 10-03-2011, 07:51 PM
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Originally Posted by ИATAS206 View Post
I hope someone remembers the numbers but 50 years ago there were something like 150 boxing gyms in NYC. There are about 3 now. That should tell you everything you need to know, at least about the popularity in America.

**those numbers are off the top of my head I don't recall the actual number**
Also in the 1920s there were more professional boxers in NYC than there are today.
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Old 10-03-2011, 08:15 PM
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Originally Posted by JAB5239 View Post
I can't comment about it's global popularity at that time, but it was much more popular in America than it is now. Its decline is do to multiple weight divisions, titles and day before weigh ins. All water down boxing's claim as a serious sport and its credibility is questioned because of it's lack of organization.
Boxing is also less visible now. When was the last time you saw a fight on TV? To see a big fight now you not only have to subscribe to HBO, Sky etc, but you have to buy the PPV as well. No one except the hardcore fans are going to do that, and in the current times not even all of them will. How many people even have a boxing club near them?

There was an episode of the Simpsons where the Mike Tyson clone Dredrick Tatum declares that "I'm the heavyweight champion, as recognised by 9 of the 14 sanctioning bodies" and I think that neatly sums up how boxing is perceived by a lot of people now: a bit of a joke.
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Old 10-03-2011, 09:57 PM
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It certainly was a lot more organized and easier to track things (at least for me, from a modern historical perspective) when there were two primary sanctioning bodies: The WBA (formerly NBA) and WBC (essentially NYSAC lineage). Two is good. When they added the IBF in the 1980s, the titles were quickly fragmented in HW division before Tyson unified them; Marvin Hagler unified (given recognition) for the Middleweight and it was still managable I suppose. But then to add a FOURTH, combined with the fact that you've got several unnecessary additional weight divisions makes for a chaotic mess. Throw in the omnipresent theories and accusations of corruption, politics, promoters, majority of the sport on pay per view, a dead heavyweight division, fighters ducking each other like (seemingly) never before, etc etc. None of it is positive.

Last edited by TAC602; 10-03-2011 at 10:12 PM.
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Old 10-03-2011, 10:15 PM
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I thought the 60s were a very down time for boxing until Ali came along?

Also globally boxing is at an all time high in Mexico, Germany and southeast Asia(Thailand Phillippines and Indonesia)

Last edited by SCtrojansbaby; 10-03-2011 at 10:19 PM.
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Old 10-04-2011, 01:02 AM
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Sad to see this. Another reason for the decline in the States is the absence of professional boxing on national tv over the last 25 years. Kids used to grow up wanting to be like that fighter they watched with their dads Saturday afternoon. Now their interests are elsewhere.
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Old 10-04-2011, 02:23 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SCtrojansbaby View Post
Also globally boxing is at an all time high in Mexico, Germany and southeast Asia(Thailand Phillippines and Indonesia)
Im not saying you're wrong, but what are your sources for this? Germany is understandable since the collapse of the Berlin wall. Southeast Asia? Possibly considering the popularity of Pacquiao. But there have been much stronger era's for Mexican boxers and their popularity than this one, in my opinion. The early to mid 70's to the early to mid 80's was stacked with popular fighters such as Sanchez, Zarate, Napoles, Oliveras, Chavez, Castillo, Zaragoza and Saldivar and others just as an example. Im sure Scott could shed more light on this and would be interested in his opinion. Boxing in Mexico always seems to popular though no matter what era in the last 50 years.

Last edited by JAB5239; 10-04-2011 at 02:27 AM.
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