Announcement

Collapse
No announcement yet.

Forgotten contenders

Collapse
  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • Forgotten contenders

    This is for Ben Bolt.

    Who are some of the best contenders to never win a world title? Let's reach a little deeper and make it interesting. We all know of Langford. Wills, McFarland, Burley and Holman Williams. I'll start.

    Willie Joyce: fought some of the very best of his day had wins over Henry Armstrong, Lre Jenkins, Chalkie Wright and took 3 out of 4 from Ike Williams.

    Who do you got and why?
    Ben Bolt likes this.

  • #2
    Howard Davis Jr. - the only one of the Olympic Class of '76 not to win a title.

    Why: He just didn't have any bang on his punches. I'm sure he impressed the 'punch counters' I find myself arguing with on this forum.

    Fast and some say even better skilled than Leonard, but just couldn't win the big ones.

    Had four shots at a title: Watts, Rosario, McGrit, Rosenblatt (sp).

    Disclamier:

    1. In today's multi belt era I suspect Davis would have held some kind of belt..

    2. There was a Featherweight from the '76 team who chose not to go pro so of course he didn't win one either.

    P.S. I want to mention Rocky Kansas, he technically does not qualify becuse he held the lightweight title for a few months after Benny Leonard retired. But it was the very end of his career.

    He made his name as a great contender, by being one of two fighters who helped make Benny Leonard great, losing to Leonard three times, all in great fights.
    Last edited by Willie Pep 229; 11-27-2021, 09:51 PM.
    JAB5239 likes this.

    Comment


    • #3
      Did Packey McFarland ever hold a title?

      I know at one point he tried to claim the LW Title when Gans announced his retirement and Battling Nelson wouldn't fight him (his claim, Nelson of course tells a different version of the same story.) But not sure if he ever got a title shot.

      70-0-5 with 50 KOs -- many newspaper decisions.

      Comment


      • #4
        Originally posted by Willie Pep 229 View Post
        Did Packey McFarland ever hold a title?

        I know at one point he tried to claim the LW Title when Gans announced his retirement and Battling Nelson wouldn't fight him (his claim, Nelson of course tells a different version of the same story.) But not sure if he ever got a title shot.

        70-0-5 with 50 KOs -- many newspaper decisions.
        No world title for McFarland as far as I can tell. It's been said he is the best fighter to never win a world championship.

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by JAB5239 View Post

          No world title for McFarland as far as I can tell. It's been said he is the best fighter to never win a world championship.
          I believe he was a west coast based fighter he has a few New York fights under his belt, even at least one at MSG, but most are out west or even Canada.

          You had to make a splash in the NYC papers if you wanted the big fights.

          Joe Gans was going to fight him - there was a period where everyone was calling for a Nelson-McFarland-Gans box off, but Gans became ill and had to pull out. Then there was a year of negotiations but they never put together the Nelson fight.

          MAYBE, just maybe we should put him in the 'poor mangement' thread.

          P.S. regarding West Coast fighters: Besides being Black, both Burley and Holman Williams suffered from not enough New York exposure. Certainly it didn't help being Black but there was no 'color line' at the time and there were several popular Black champions at the time.

          Both never established themselves in the East - and neither had a reputation for putting as*es in the seats.

          Williams (Ring #1) should have gotten first shot at Tony Zale after the war (he earned it by dominating Burley [Ring #2] in their last fight) but Garizano sold out MSG for five consecutive non-title fights between late '44 and 1945.

          Zale-Garizano therefore was a no brainer when Zale got discharged, but Williams got unlucky that it turned into a trilogy that spanned two and a half years. He tried to bump up to LHW but ran into the Old Mongoose who got that title shot.

          Burley was at his best when the titles were 'on hold' and was at the end in '45 and '46 - he was out of the rankings by '47.

          But I feel at that time, (considering all the Black champions in play) it wasn't outright racism that held them back as much as systemic racism (as in not enough paying customers) added to limited New York exposure is why they got passed over.

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by Willie Pep 229 View Post
            In today's multi belt era I suspect Davis would have held some kind of belt.
            Most likely.

            There are some amateur fighters you never forget. Like Davis, who was voted Best Boxer in the (perhaps) best Olympic tournament ever.
            I was young back then, and through Davis I learned that a great amateur doesn’t necessarily makes a great pro. Through the years, his
            loss to Jim Watt is one of the results that surprised me the most.



            Willie Pep 229 likes this.

            Comment


            • #7
              I like Tiger Jones, Johnny Saxton, Holly Mims pretty sure non of them won titles, gotta double check later

              if we go by written accounts many think Burley. Some of the older guys that were trainers up until even the early 90s were still talking about Burley
              Last edited by them_apples; 11-28-2021, 03:13 AM.
              billeau2 likes this.

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by them_apples View Post
                I like Tiger Jones, Johnny Saxton, Holly Mims pretty sure non of them won titles, gotta double check later

                if we go by written accounts many think Burley. Some of the older guys that were trainers up until even the early 90s were still talking about Burley
                Looks like Saxton went 1-3 in title fights held the WW title for 6 months in 1956.

                Lost to DeMarco in April '55 (KO); beat Basillio in March of '56 (UD), gave back the title to Basillio in September '56 (KO) and the lost a rematch with Basillio in February '57 (KO).

                Was more a great contender than a great champion.
                them_apples likes this.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by Willie Pep 229 View Post

                  I believe he was a west coast based fighter he has a few New York fights under his belt, even at least one at MSG, but most are out west or even Canada.

                  You had to make a splash in the NYC papers if you wanted the big fights.

                  Joe Gans was going to fight him - there was a period where everyone was calling for a Nelson-McFarland-Gans box off, but Gans became ill and had to pull out. Then there was a year of negotiations but they never put together the Nelson fight.

                  MAYBE, just maybe we should put him in the 'poor mangement' thread.

                  P.S. regarding West Coast fighters: Besides being Black, both Burley and Holman Williams suffered from not enough New York exposure. Certainly it didn't help being Black but there was no 'color line' at the time and there were several popular Black champions at the time.

                  Both never established themselves in the East - and neither had a reputation for putting as*es in the seats.

                  Williams (Ring #1) should have gotten first shot at Tony Zale after the war (he earned it by dominating Burley [Ring #2] in their last fight) but Garizano sold out MSG for five consecutive non-title fights between late '44 and 1945.

                  Zale-Garizano therefore was a no brainer when Zale got discharged, but Williams got unlucky that it turned into a trilogy that spanned two and a half years. He tried to bump up to LHW but ran into the Old Mongoose who got that title shot.

                  Burley was at his best when the titles were 'on hold' and was at the end in '45 and '46 - he was out of the rankings by '47.

                  But I feel at that time, (considering all the Black champions in play) it wasn't outright racism that held them back as much as systemic racism (as in not enough paying customers) added to limited New York exposure is why they got passed over.
                  - -In Burley's case, he made the Olympic team but refuse to fight in Hitler's Nazi Germany, a decision that always intrigued me as indication of Burley being of higher intelligence marching to the beat of a different drummer than most young men of his era.

                  Instead, he signed up for the competing Spanish Games that were canceled after Franco debuted his overthrow of Spain, so Burley never got the press of Jesse Owens and the Olympic boxers. He might well have won those games and returned home a hero with lucrative competing promoter/mgr offers, all quashed by the Fickle Finger of Fate.

                  Such are the fortunes of Mice and Men...
                  billeau2 and Willie Pep 229 like this.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    I wanted to say Billy Conn, since there’s not that many noteworthy boxers from Pittsburgh other than Harry Greb. I also thought of mentioning David Tua, but he’s not really forgotten. I’m drawing a blank so far.

                    Comment

                    Working...
                    X
                    TOP