Lee Groves

10: Presidential-boxer pairings

7. Warren Harding (1921-1923) and Jeff Harding (1986-1994, 23-2 with 17 knockouts)

The first sitting senator ever to be elected president (Kennedy and Obama would follow), Harding won the White House by the largest popular vote margin in history (26.15 percentage points). Harding enjoyed excellent media relations because of his past as a newspaper mogul and benefited from domestic and international popularity during his 28 months in office because of his candor and willingness to admit mistakes.

The gritty Australian was never one to hold his tongue either, and, like his counterpart, had no problems confessing to his own limitations. “The Hit Man” shocked the boxing world in June 1989 by scoring an off-the-floor, come-from-behind, last-round TKO of WBC light heavyweight king Dennis Andries as a late sub, sparking a thrilling but underrated trilogy that saw three title changes, all by knockout. The hard-headed Aussie often overcame cuts and his own leaky defense to grind down those who opposed him. Besides Andries, Harding defeated Don Lee (KO 8), Art Jimmerson (W 10), Nestor Giovanini (W 10, KO 11), Tom Collins (KO 2), Christophe Tiozzo (KO 8) and David Vedder (W 10, W 12) before losing his final fight to Hall of Famer Mike McCallum.

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