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Best boxers of all time

Updated on June 2, 2014

There are many factors that need to be taken into account while compiling a list of the “best boxers of all time”. In addition to the accomplishments in their respective careers, and their performances in the boxing ring, their overall popularity with the public is also a vital pointer of how great a boxer is. All the above factors and more have been considered while preparing this list of the ‘best boxers of all time.’

  • Muhammad Ali: Muhammad Ali is one name that is synonymous with boxing and the first name that people will utter when talking about boxing. His record is truly exceptional and speaks volumes about Ali’s class.Ali took birth as Cassius Marcellus Clay Jr., on 17th January 1942. He is currently touted and praised as a superstar, a legend and an all-time great in the sport of boxing. He took part in 61 professional boxing bouts and lost a measly 5 out of them; he won 37 fights via knockouts. He held the title of ‘world heavyweight champion’ three times in his career, thereby making him the best boxer there ever has been. In addition to this glorious feat, Ali also won the gold medal in the 1960 Summer Olympics held in Rome.Ali retired from the sport in 1981 after experiencing many injuries as well as other health-related problems. Soon after the announcement of his retirement, he was diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease. Ever since, Ali has actively participated in human rights activities and a number of other social causes.

  • Sugar Ray Robinson: Originally referred to as Walker Smith Jr., the boxing superstar Sugar Ray Robinson is considered by some boxing fans and experts as being better than Ali. As an amateur boxer, he holds an envious record of 85-0, which included 80 victories; 69 of these came by the way of knockouts! Through the span of his career that comprised of 200 fights, ‘Sugar Ray’ won an astounding 175, in which 109 opponents were knocked out.

  • Henry Armstrong: He is famous in the boxing world as being the only boxing professional of his time to have held 3 world championship titles at the same time. Armstrong participated in 181 fights and came out victorious in 151 of these bouts. Out of the 151 victories, Armstrong knocked out 101 opponents to win the bout.

  • Roberto Duran: His impressive and jaw-dropping performances in the ring earned him the nickname ‘Manos de Piedra,’ which means ‘hands of stone.’ His furious bouts totaling 119 fights comprised of 103 wins. Out of these victories, 70 of Duran’s wins were by the way of knockouts.

  • Joe Louis: Popularly referred to as the ‘Brown Bomber,’ Joe Louis held the world heavyweight championship title consecutively for a record 140 months. He fought a total of sixty five bouts in his career and lost just 4 of them. Out of the 61 victories, he knocked out his opponent in 51 of them. In 2005, the International Boxing Research Organization honored Joe Louis as being the “Greatest Heavyweight Boxing Professional of All Time.”

  • Jack Johnson: Jack Johnson was nicknames as the ‘Galveston Giant.’ He was the first African American to become the World Heavy weight Boxing Champion. His boxing style was quite unique and orthodox. He waited and baited his opponent to make a mistake and then took full toll on him for those mistakes. This style of boxing got him 73 wins out of the total of 104 bouts and over fifty percent of these victories were knockouts.

  • Guglielmo Papaleo: Popularly referred to as Willie Pep, Guglielmo Papaleo was a boxing professional of Italian-American origins who hailed from Connecticut in the USA. He is considered as one of the best fighters in the squared ring and a prized name in American boxing history. His career spanned over 26 years during which he fought an astounding 241 bouts. His envious record of 229 wins, 11 losses, and 1 no result, featuring 65 victories by way of knockouts is simply awe-inspiring!

  • Jack Dempsey: Nicknamed as the ‘Manassa Mauler,’ Jack Dempsey’s claim to fame is his reign as the world heavyweight champion for 7 years, between 1919 and 1926. He fought a total of 83 bouts across a time span of fourteen years, and won sixty-six of them. 51 of his victories were knockouts.

  • Mike Tyson: Mike Tyson is another name that defines the great sport of boxing. At age of just 20 years, Mike won the World Boxing Championship via a technical knockout. He may currently be more famous for all his antics outside the boxing ring, but no one can doubt his credentials as one of the masters in the art of boxing. And who can forget the fact that he was and still is the youngest man to ever win the WBA, WBC and IBF heavyweight titles.

  • Sam Langford: He had two nicknames, i.e., ‘Boston Terror’ and ‘Boston Bone crusher.’ Sam is considered as one of the fiercest pugilists of the last century. He fought an amazing 314 bouts and won 200 of them. 130 of his victories ended in knockout of his opponents. ESPN has formally conferred him with the title ‘Greatest Fighter Nobody Knows.’


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