When we talk about the best boxers of all time, Muhammad Ali from the United States tops our list. He has to his credit bagged the Olympic gold medal for light heavyweight boxing in 1960. Thereafter, Ali embarked on a career as a professional boxer. Since then there has been no looking back for this boxing legend. Ali quickly became the world heavyweight champion in 1964, beating the then-undefeated champion Sonny Liston.
Despite being a heavyweight boxer, Ali was known for his punching speed. His reflexes were similar to those of welterweight fighters. During his career, he fought and won many-a-battles. In the ring, he defeated famous boxers including Joe Frazier, Ken Norton, Joe Louis, Ernie Shavers, and George Foreman.
Experts have taken note of Ali’s style of fighting which involved keeping his hands low and leaning straight back to avoid incoming punches has given him an edge over his rivals. Both these things were considered to be rookie mistakes for a heavyweight boxer. However, Ali’s speed turned these mistakes into a formidable boxing style, which he is remembered for even today. Additionally, the wanna-be boxers remember Ali for his rope-a-dope tactic to tactfully defeat George Foreman in his famous Rumble in the Jungle fight.
At the fag end of his glorious career, he suffered from Parkinson’s disease. His physical well-being deteriorated during his last few fights. Ali retired after he was physically unable to continue fighting. He’s the only boxer ever to become the lineal champion thrice. Muhammad Ali was inducted into the International Boxing Hall of Fame in 1990 and passed away in 2016.
Sugar Ray Robinson
Also from the United States, Sugar Ray Robinson is counted among the best pound-for-pound boxers of all time, Sugar Ray Robinson’s name sits at the very top. The nickname ‘Sugar’ came from a newspaper reporter who described him to be sweet as sugar. It is unclear if the media person was indeed his fan.
Since Sugar Ray Robinson’s debut in professional boxing in 1940, he maintained a winning streak of 40 consecutive bouts. He won his first Fighter of the Year award in 1942 and subsequently bagged his second award in 1951.
Despite maintaining a winning streak, his first loss came at the hands of Jake LaMotta in 1943. However, after his first loss, Robinson remained undefeated for the next eight years. Back then, Robinson fought and won against many middleweight and welterweight champions of his era. He became the world welterweight champion in 1946 but later called it quits and moved to fight in the middleweight category.
Back then his critiques shared mixed opinions about his switchover. However, he proved them wrong. Robinson became the middleweight champion five times throughout his career. He became the world middleweight champion in 1951 after one-sidedly dominating Jake LaMotta. The fight was popularly called The St. Valentine’s Day Massacre.
Robinson initially retired from boxing in 1952 with a career record of 131-3-1, but not for long.
However, he returned to boxing in 1955 and continued to fight until 1965 with a final career record of 175-19-6. Robinson is still considered to be one of the most skilled boxers to have ever lived. He quickly adapted to the opponent and displayed no real shortcomings. This attribute sets him apart from the other boxers in his capacity.
Sugar Ray Robinson breathed his last in1989 and was inducted into the International Hall of Fame in 1990.
Joe Louis from the United States
Joe Louis, also known as The Brown Bomber, holds the world record for the most title defenses in the history of heavyweight boxing. He defended his world heavyweight title 25 times in a row over an era that spanned a decade, 3 years, and 3 months in one weight class.
As soon as he slipped out of his teens, he began his pro boxing career at the age of 20, Joe Louis won his first 27 fights back to back, 23 of these fights were by knockout. His first defeat came at the hands of the former heavyweight champion Max Schmeling in 1936. After his defeat, he made a comeback with seven straight wins, earning him a shot at the world heavyweight title.
In 1937, Joe Louis became the world heavyweight champion after knocking out James J. Braddock in round eight. After earning the world title, Joe Louis continued to defend his title for the next 13 years. His second fight against Max Schmeling in 1938 especially attracted much attention because of World War II.
His rivals know him as a terrific genius when it comes to boxing. He had a perfect punching form, and his primary fighting style revolved around counters. During the bout, he would identify his opponent’s tendencies or habits and put them through deadly counters. Among all boxers, This probability earned Joe Louis the title of the smartest boxer of all time. Joe Louis died in 1981 and was inducted into the International Boxing Hall of Fame in 1990.
In every era of boxing, there have been champions who have dominated the ring. The boxers trained religiously to perfect their techniques, physique, and boxing style. It takes a lot of perseverance, endurance, and consistency to be one of the best boxers in the city. Also it requires a boxing coach who will guide you through your entire journey. Some make it big in the boxing ring and thus, they are remembered by several generations even after they are gone. A section of the boxers in the city is more than just famous their life history is made into a movie or a book that motivates and inspires the masses.