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26 NOVEMBER 2014

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Linden
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Actually - having watched it again (it's been a while) it's not as bad as I remember it - though it is long.  Douglas looked in better shape too.

Bowe could have been one of the best ever.  He could fight on the outside, was great on the inside .. . . he had an excellent career but it could have been a great career.  I think his best was better than any other heavyweight in the 90's.  At his best I would have taken him over any of the others in a head to head. 


Linden
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Well there's no doubt that Douglas was boxing Tyson's ears off.  However - the count is there for all to see and is well documented.  The timekeeper is counting four and the referee picks up from 1. What's also not in dispute is that Douglas gets up on the referee's count of ten.  The question wasn't really concerned with whether Douglas could beat the count -- it was more to do with the ref robbing Tyson of those four and haf seconds. That's a long time for one of the best finishers in the business to go to work . ...


Linden
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Top 10 1980s Middleweights on Wed 19-Aug-2009:

I think Michael Nunn should be in there (and high on the list!).  He'd been a pro for six years by the end of the eighties; had won the title; unified it and beaten top quality boxers in Roldan, Tate, Barkley and Kalambay.  You can't have a top 10 eighties middleweight list without Michael Nunn on it.  Tommy Hearns is my favourite all time boxer .... but you couldn't have him at 2 based on middleweight accomplishments (though I would take him over most of the others in head-to-heads).


Linden
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An interesting question for everyone based on the last few posts ....... imagine that Douglas did not get the long count and somehow managed to drag himself to his feet before the count of ten.  He's had four and a half seconds less to recover and (crucially) instead of the bell going as the boxers close on each other Tyson has four and a half seconds left in the round to go at Douglas.  Question : what happens in the rest of the fight? Does Douglas still win?  Does he get kayoed then and there?  Does he ride out the round but take extra damage that reduces his effectiveness for the rest of the fight?  Answers on a postcard ..


Linden
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Perko - Tyson did beat tall boxers with fast hands and good jabs.  Remember the 6' 3'' Tony Tubbs wobbling across the ring in Tokyo?  This was the same Tubbs who three years later ran Riddick Bowe VERY close (i.e. within a couple of points).  Or the 6'5'' (35-0) Tony Tucker?  Or the 6' 5'' unbeaten Olympic gold medallist Tyrell Biggs?  Tyson's style was 'power boxing' at it's peak.  A high energy style with a lot of foot movement, upper body movement and combination punching involving clusters of power punches.  It was a style suited only to a young, clean living gym rat. Once Tyson got older and slacked off the training it was a style he couldn't maintain longer for more than four or five rounds (which to be honest was good enough against most heavyweights).  He also lost that Jonesesque edge in quickness.  That's something that people seem to forget.  At his peak he was soooo much quicker than other heavyweights it actually stopped them throwing their own punches.  They would get in there and very quickly go into their shell --- unwilling to throw punches through fear of getting countered.  That was a BIG weapon that he'd lost by the turn of the ninties.


Linden
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Johnboy - here's one for you.  You really seem to count respectable losses - where does Frank Bruno sit with you then?  After all he was actually ahead against a prime Lewis until getting stopped in the seventh.  Came within a punch or two of stopping Mike Tyson,  again at his peak (he certainly gave him his toughest fight until that point).  Leading on the cards for most of the fight against a prime Tim Witherspoon until getting stopped in the 11th .... Here's a guy who was beaten five times and only by current or future world champions in their primes -- three of those loses coming against two fighters who would feature in the top five GOAT list of many people.  I suppose the only dodgy one on his resume would be Bonecrusher Smith and even then he'd probably won ever minute of every round until the 10th round stoppage. If valiant losing efforts are rated so highly I would be interested to see where he sits.  If only he'd had better stamina. . ...


Linden
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Losses should be taken into consideration but you give them far too much weight.  This is one of the problems with boxing (and the rankings boxing organisations publish) -- they are too subjective.  In no other sport are losses rewarded.  If a tennis player loses a five set thriller has still lost.  If Hull put up a great show against Man Utd and lose, then they get nil points in the league table.  McCall's win against Lewis wasn't suspect.  He practised the right hand with Manny Steward and KO'd Lewis with it.  That's not chance.  To say that Mercer's losses against Holyfield and Lewis rank higher than McCalls wins against Holmes and Lewis is preposterous.  You could quite easily argue that Lewis' showing against Mercer had more to do with him taking Mercer lightly after his outings against Ferguson (twice), Holmes and the mighty Marion Wilson (remember him - the guy Mercer drew against with the 7-9-2 record?).  We all know Lewis had that tendency.  Mercer and Morrison were more high profile and so got more column inches.  Mercer the Olympic gold medal hero with the fierce rivalry with room-mate Bowe ..... Morrison the exciting movie star, related (sic) to John Wayne and with a big mouth.  McCall v Morrison?  Boxing is spectacularly hard to predict but I would have put my house on Morrison leaving the ring via stretcher!  Don't get me started on Morrison!  Hype -- it plays far too big a role in boxing.


Linden
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glass jaw-granite chin on Fri 14-Aug-2009:

I can hear groans from Johnboy as I write this but . . . . apparently (and I'm not absolutelty certain about this - I'm willing to be corrected) but I hear that Oliver McCall has never actually been dropped (even in sparring).  I'm pretty certain it's never happened in a fight. 


Linden
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Johnyboy - as Joe Friday would say “Just the facts …”.  Ultimately boxing is a results business.  Comparing the attributes of boxers is subjective – results impossible to predict.  You can only look at records.  When you compare the results for Mercer and McCall, McCall comes out well on top.  There’s simply no comparison.  The same goes comparing McCall to  Tua or Morrison.  They might have peaked higher than McCall and beaten him on their best night (though I’m not convinced) but when you look at their careers McCall wins hands down.


McCalls (52-9-0)  - WBC Champ


Best wins


Lennox Lewis


Larry Holmes


Francesco Damiani


Bruce Seldon


Henry Akinwande


Sinan Samil Sam


 


Mercers  (36-7-1) – WBO Champ


Best wins


Tommy Morrison


Francesco Damiani


Bert Cooper


Tim Witherspoon


 


Mercer’s marquee wins were  against Morrison and Damiani – and both were come from behind stoppages  (Morrison was absolutely hammering him and he was well behind on points against the fat Italian until he broke his nose). 


Morrison has nobody on his record comparable to Lewis or Holmes.  Also I would have backed McCall against any of Mercer’s big wins but you demonstrably can’t say that the other way around.  Witherspoon might have done it but I would have put my house on McCall starching Morrison and Cooper (granite chin vs no chin).   Could you even say with any confidence that Mercer would have beaten Akinwande or Sam?


With common opponents McCall KO’d Lewis in two / Mercer was outpointed over ten.  McCall outpointed Holmes / Mercer was outpointed by Holmes.  McCall outpointed Ferguson / Mercer lost and won a split decision.  McCall outpointed Damiani / Mercer won via TKO (but again – a fight he was losing handily).


As for a head to head you know that A). McCall is not going to get stopped B). He’s going to come into the fight in top shape C). He’ll fight the full 12 rounds.  Not things you could say about Mercer.  A peak Mercer at the top of his game would be a very tough contest ….. but what are the odds he would turn up?  A fighters attitude, dedication and work ethic is all part of it.  McCall was more consistent; beat better fighters; won a more prestigious title against a better caliber of opponent; and had a longer career (he’s still competing  against good guys even now!).


Linden
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There is one boxer I think should be on your list - Oliver McCall.  If you compare McCall to Mercer for instance he beat three fighters that Mercer couldn't (Ferguson, Lewis and Holmes) for a start; took a recognised belt in the WBC, and had some good victories over the likes of Damiani, Maskaev and Seldon.  He was outpointed a few times but the fights were alway close and against good opposition (peak Tony Tucker, Frank Bruno).  I think on balance he has a better record Mercer who generally came up short against the better fighters.  I think I would have backed McCall in a head-to-head too (thought it would have been a cracking fight).   


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