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Pictorial History of Boxing's Light Heavyweight Division

Updated on April 5, 2014

175 Pound Legends of The Ring

Bob Fitzsimmons was the first universally recognized Light Heavyweight Champion of the World.
Bob Fitzsimmons was the first universally recognized Light Heavyweight Champion of the World. | Source
Slapsie Maxie Rosenbloom lacked power but he was an excellent boxer and a former Light Heavyweight King.
Slapsie Maxie Rosenbloom lacked power but he was an excellent boxer and a former Light Heavyweight King. | Source
John Henry Lewis ruled the light heavyweights for almost three total years and retired as champion because he failed the eye test.
John Henry Lewis ruled the light heavyweights for almost three total years and retired as champion because he failed the eye test. | Source
Billy Conn beat Tony Zale by knockout.
Billy Conn beat Tony Zale by knockout. | Source
Archie Moore and Joey Maxim go toe to toe for the 175 pound crown.
Archie Moore and Joey Maxim go toe to toe for the 175 pound crown. | Source
Jack Dempsey and former light heavyweight king pin Bob Foster arm wrestle for the camera.
Jack Dempsey and former light heavyweight king pin Bob Foster arm wrestle for the camera. | Source
Michael Spinks was a former Light Heavyweight champion who never lost a fight at the weight.
Michael Spinks was a former Light Heavyweight champion who never lost a fight at the weight. | Source
Roy Jones, Jr. and Montell Griffin fought for the light heavyweight championship.
Roy Jones, Jr. and Montell Griffin fought for the light heavyweight championship. | Source
The Hitman Tommy Hearns launches a jab at Quicksilver Virgil Hill.
The Hitman Tommy Hearns launches a jab at Quicksilver Virgil Hill. | Source
Bernard Hopkins beat Antonio Tarver for his first of three light heavyweight titles. He is also the oldest champion in boxing history.
Bernard Hopkins beat Antonio Tarver for his first of three light heavyweight titles. He is also the oldest champion in boxing history. | Source
Dick Tiger gets knocked out and loses his light heavyweight crown.
Dick Tiger gets knocked out and loses his light heavyweight crown. | Source

Top 175 Pound Prizefighters

The majority of these boxers accomplished many things in other weight divisions but this hub only documents their achievements in the 175 pound weight class.

1. Ezzard Charles: Simply put Ezzard Charles is the best Light Heavyweight ever because his record against Archie Moore stands at 3-0 with 1 knockout. But he also has three wins over Joey Maxim and wins over Harold Johnson, Lloyd Marshall, Bob Satterfield, Jimmy Bivins and Elmer Ray. The Cincinnati Kid, as Charles was called had it all. Offense, defense, style, counter punching and power. Charles had a final ring record of: 93-25-1 with 52 knockouts.

2. Archie Moore: The Ole Mongoose has the record for the most knockouts in boxing history with 131. He also holds the distinction of having the longest reign in Light Heavyweight history ruling the division for ten years. Moore was a deadly place puncher but he also had tremendous boxing skills and defense and he fought out of the crab style, crossed arms defensive stance. Moore's final career record reads: 185-23-10 with 131 knockouts.

3. Bob Foster: Bob Foster knocked out the great Dick Tiger in four rounds to become the light heavyweight king and he held the title from 1968 until 1974. He retained his belts 14 times before being stripped as he moved on to heavyweight. He was a deadly knockout puncher who beat among others: Dick Tiger, Frank De Paul, Mike Quarry and Al Bolden. This power puncher finished his career with a ring record of 56-8-1 with 46 knockouts.

4. Michael Spinks: The Spinx Jinx won a Gold medal in the Olympics, the light heavyweight championship and the Heavyweight crown. His final career record is 31-1 with 21 knockouts and his only defeat came at Heavyweight to Mike Tyson. Spinks beat Eddie Mustafa Muhammad for the 175 pound belt and defended it ten times before vacating the thrown. He had a hard right hand and odd footwork and movements that usually baffled his foes. Among his top victories were wins over Marvin Johnson, Eddie Davis, Dwight Muhammad Qwai and Yaqui Lopez.

5. Gene Tunney: Tunney won the Light Heavyweight Championship twice, once from Harry Greb and once from Battling Levensky. His final ring record was 65-1-1 with 48 knockouts. The only man to beat him was Greb whom he got revenge on several times. He was a masterful boxer with a great jab, great footwork and fluid combination punching. Among his victims were Greb, Levinsky, Tommy Gibbons and Georges Carpentier.

6. Roy Jones, Jr.: Jones has won titles in four weight divisions but he accomplished the most as a light heavyweight winning the crown twice. Jones had speed, power and other worldly reflexes. He beat Mike McCallum and Montell Griffin for his 175 pound championships making 11 defenses over two reigns. Among his victims at light heavy were McCallum, Griffin, Virgil Hill, Antonio Tarver, Reggie Johnson and Julio Gonzalez.

7. Harry Greb: Greb retired with a ring resume reading 104-8-3 with 48 knockouts which does not include newspaper decisions. He is the only man to ever beat Gene Tunney who he beat for the American Light Heavyweight Championship. He was a non stop puncher who would swarm you from start to finish. His victims included: Tunney, Tommy Loughran, Jimmy Slattery and Gunboat Smith.

8. Billy Conn: The Pittsburgh Kid won the Light Heavyweight laurels from Melio Bettina and defended his crown three times before vacating to move up to the heavyweight division. He also fought four non title fights during his tenure as Champ. He lacked power but he had great skills especially with his footwork and jab. He had fast hands and he would flurry during bouts to pile up points. Among his top wins were victories over Tony Zale, Gus Lesnevich, Fred Apostoli, Fritzie Zivic and Young Corbett 3.

9. Sam Langford: The Boston Bonecrusher is regarded as the best boxer that never won a world title and one of the best knockout artist in boxing history. He fought from lightweight all the way to heavyweight and his ring record was an amazing 179-30-40 with 128 knockouts. He had tremendous power and his jab was as hard as that of Sonny Liston's. His best wins were against Harry Wills, Fireman Jim Flynn, Joe Jeanette and Joe Gans.

10. Virgil Hill: Quick Silver won a silver medal in the Olympics and a Cruiserweight Championship bu,t it was hisLight Heavyweight career that was special. He beat Leslie Stewart for the Light Heavyweight Crown and defended it 10 times before losing it to the great Tommy Hearns. He later regained the title by beating Frank Tate and defended this title ten times as well. Hill had a fantastic jab, great balance and footwork and a solid chin. His biggest wins have came against: Tate, Henry Maske, Adolpho Washington and Fabrice Tiozzo.

Who is The Oldest?


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Roy Jones, Jr. Highlights

Who is The Top Boxer?

Who is the best Light Heavyweight boxer ever?

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Archie Moore Tribute

Ezzard Charles Best Wins

Archie Moore
Bob Satterfield
Harold Johnson
Niño Valdes
Joey Maxim
Joey Maxim
 
Lloyd Marshall
Jimmy Bivins
 
 
 
8 of Ezzard's Best Light Heavyweight Victories

Bob Foster Highlights

Birthplace of Roy Jones, Jr.

© 2013 Buster Johnson

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