Doug Fischer

Dougie’s Friday mailbag

Dougie considers Bernard Hopkins and Sugar Ray Leonard to be all-time greats, but not Floyd Mayweather, which pisses of Money’s fans (awwww, poor babies)

 

PACMAN & FLOYD

Dougie,

First time emailing but long time follower. Love your work. I have a few thoughts about Floyd Mayweather and Manny Pacquiao.

Floyd thinking he is the greatest ever because of 44 and 0 is crazy. I wish Brian Kenny were still at ESPN because he is the only TV broadcaster that would challenge Floyd on his crazy claims. Didn’t Julio Cesar Chavez go undefeated for 89 fights (87 before the Whitaker draw)? Rocky Marciano was 49-0. Joe Calzaghe was undefeated. Those men could have made those claims but didn’t. Floyd is very good but not great. Bernard Hopkins and Pacquiao have better resumes. They seek out dangerous challenges. Floyd does not. People say Pacquiao took on faded big men but the same people did not say that before the Oscar De La Hoya, Miguel Cotto, and Antonio Margarito fights. Plus Pacquiao normally weighed in at the lower to mid level of each weight class when he was moving up in weight. Pacquiao suffered a vicious KO but he is getting ready to fight a tough SOB in Brandon Rios in his next fight.

I may be in the minority but I actually think Amir Khan could give Floyd some problems. I would still favor Floyd because of Khan’s weak chin but Khan is blazing fast and is a very good boxer. He throws punches in volume and he moves in and out. Floyd is quick but throws too few punches. I think a boxer puncher has the best chance to beat Floyd. Mosley and Judah had chances but they fell apart. Of course Floyd had something to do with that. Saul Alvarez and Austin Trout have a chance. Floyd won’t touch the middleweights. The great Roberto Duran started as a lightweight but won a middleweight title. The Mayweather-Robert Guerrero fight was a stinker but the other fights were great. Instead of the “Money” nickname, how about Floyd “Boring” Mayweather?

Keep up the good work! – Eric, Raleigh, NC

Stop hating, Eric. LOL.

Correction about the great Roberto Duran: he won his first world title at lightweight. He turned pro at 119¼ pounds, and basically fought at junior featherweight for the first year of his pro career (February 1968 to February ‘69).

I agree that Alvarez and Trout have the ability (and size) to beat Mayweather, an opinion that is pure hatred to “Floyd-huggers” worldwide (you’ll get to read the opinions of one after I respond to your email).

Due to the speed and combination punching that you mentioned (plus his lateral movement and having a sharp trainer, Virgil Hunter), I think Khan can give Mayweather some problems and make for an interesting fight for about five or six rounds. However, I can’t predict that the British standout will do anything more than that after getting KTFO by Danny Garcia and going life and death with Julio Diaz.

I think it’s a matter of opinion as to who has the better resume: Mayweather, Hopkins or Pacquiao. They’ve all been at the world-class level for 15 years or more and all have faced a high caliber of opposition. If you’re into undefeated records/win streaks, Floyd is your boy. If you’re into division hopping and boxing rivalries, Manny’s your guy. If you’re into all-time records and title unifications/undisputed championships, B-Hop is the man.

I’m into all-time records and undisputed championships, so Hopkins gets extra props from me, as does B-Hop’s favorite “white boy” Calzaghe, who not only retired with a 46-0 record, but won the WBO, IBF, WBA, WBC and THE RING 168-pound titles.

Regarding Mayweather’s claim to be the “greatest ever,” I don’t think he makes that ridiculous boast based solely on his 44-0 record. I’m sure a significant part to his claim is the fact that he’s won a major title at 130 pounds (should have been two, but Chico’s belt wasn’t onteh line), one at 135, one at 140, three at 147 (five counting THE RING belts), and two at 154.

Brian Kenny’s verbal battles with Mayweather on ESPN were often more interesting than Floyd’s fights, but the guy I want ‘Money’ to grant a “rematch” interview with is rapper-writer-filmmaker R.A. The Rugged Man. Their first go around was classic.

STAGGERING DISRESPECT

Hey Dougie, first time writer but have been reading your mailbag for a while now……

I find it staggering the almost constant disrespect Floyd Mayweather faces after a dominating performance…….as far back as I can remember he has been taking on the best opposition:

Guerroro – top 3 rated welter at the time of the fight

Victor Ortiz – top 5 rated welter at the time of the fight

Cotto – top 3 rated junior middle at the time of the fight

Juan Manuel Marquez – top 3 p4p at the time, undisputed lightweight and has shown since he can compete at welterweight

De La Hoya – top 5 at junior middle

Mosley – top 3 at welter

Ricky Hatton – no.1 junior welter, beltholder at welterweight

Diego Corrales – no.1 at super featherweight, many predicted Mayweather to be KOed

Genaro Hernandez – no.1 at super featherweight, many predicted a loss for Floyd

Jose Luis Castillo – twice ranked no.1 at lightweight

Zab Judah – top 5 ranked welterweight, although coming off a loss

Carlos Baldomir – lineal welterweight champion

Fair enough he may not have fought people like Antonio Margarito and Paul Williams but honestly with any credibility can you say those guys would of beaten him? Both get hit far too much to have ever beaten a slickster like Floyd. The Pacquiao fight didn’t happen because both camps were wrong; neither ducked the other, it was more of a promotional conflict than anything else.

Boxing is about money pure and simple. Leonard fought the fights which brought him the most money – don’t be stupid enough to think he would of fought Hagler for free. Duran fought till 50 just because he loved to fight? No because he needed the cash.

You say Hopkins is the truly only great fighter of the era? Because he fought people he was the underdog and triumphed? Floyd hasn’t got those type of scenarios to play with, he is always the favourite, even if he fought Sergio Martinez now he would be, no doubt. Hopkins losses to Calzaghe, Taylor, Dawson paved the way for his victories against people like Pascal, Pavlik and Cloud to look spectacular and when you factor in his age people rightly rave on about him. But if Floyd fought the equivalent of Pascal, Pavlik and Cloud at welterweight he would receive little to no credit.

You are a hypocrite, Floyd fights a guy you said he would have difficulty with and when he spanks him, you criticise the level of opponent. You keep harping on about Canelo is the man to provide a tough fight, what happens when he destroys him?

I have studied the sport and appreciate the great fighters of the past. Floyd would be able to compete in any era ever. I’m not saying he would win all his fights but he would be up there………how could Sugar Ray Leonard or Sugar Ray Robinson improved on Floyd’s legacy if they were fighting in this era? Haha by fighting Margarito and P. Williams……..stop being a hater because I’ve tried to give you the benefit of the doubt but after your last mailbag where you subtly stated that Floyd isn’t great you become unbiased.

Please post this and respond with facts like I have. – Dominic A., UK

First of all, Dominic. I didn’t subtly state that Mayweather isn’t great in my last mailbag. I don’t think he’s an all-great. Period.

How could Sugar Ray Leonard or Sugar Ray Robinson – both of whom I do consider great (Robinson being the G.O.A.T.) – have improved on Floyd’s legacy if they were fighting in this era? It’s real simple, they’d just be themselves.

Leonard would have done it by fighting the absolute best fighter (or fighters) in each division he occupied at the time that those potential opponents were perceived as the best (or second best, next to him) by the media and general public. I know this because that’s what he did when he faced Wilfred Benitez (38-0-1 at the time), Roberto Duran (71-1; 8-0 in bouts above 140 pounds going into the first Leonard fight) and Thomas Hearns (32-0 with 30 KOs) at welterweight. When he came back from a 3½-year retirement in 1987, he faced the undisputed middleweight champ Marvin Hagler (who also held the mythical pound-for-pound title) at 160 pounds.

(Allow me the opportunity to spit some Mayweather “hate” your way: when Floyd came back from a 1½-year retirement he fought the lightweight champ, Marquez, at a 144-pound catchweight – and did not honour the catchweight.)

Robinson, being a Golden Age fighter, would have simply fought everyone ranked in the top 10-15 of every division he occupied, and he would annihilated all the lightweights, junior welterweights, welterweights and junior middleweights that Mayweather fought (as well as all the lightweights, junior welterweights, welterweights and junior middleweights that Mayweather didn’t fight – such as Joel Casamayor, Acelino Freitas, Stevie Johnston, Leo Dorin, Paul Spadafora, Kostya Tszyu, Margarito and Williams).

You want facts, Dom. OK. Fact: You’re a Mayweather fan (and there’s nothing wrong with that). Fact: Anything anyone says or writes about Mayweather that isn’t glowing praise, over-the-top accolades or blatant ass kissing is going sound like mean-spirited criticism or outright “hate” to you (which is wrong).

I have also studied the sport and appreciate the great fighters of the past. I agree that Mayweather would have competed in any era. I’m going to analyze your analysis, and I do so knowing that you perceive everything I write regarding Mayweather as “hate.” I don’t care. That’s your problem. I know there are other young readers who are simply boxing fans and not diehard Mayweather followers. I know that they will learn something from the information I provide. Some will look into it, do a little extra reading and research, and many of those readers will gain a new or added appreciation for the old timers that you believe Floyd is on par with (which is very wrong).

But before I do that, name the Mayweather opponents I said would give him a tough time and then criticized as inferior after he “spanked” them. Did I criticize Guerrero? Did I criticize Mosley? Did I criticize De La Hoya? Did I criticize Castillo? (Were you even following boxing in 2007? I have my doubts. The fact that you say a lot of fans or media were picking Hernandez and Corrales to beat Mayweather makes me think you weren’t following the sport back then.)

Anyway, you named 12 Mayweather opponents who were rated in the top five of their respective division when Floyd faced them. It’s an impressive list of world-class fighters. It’s the reason I will gladly put a checkmark next to Mayweather’s name whenever I see it on the International Boxing Hall of Fame ballot.

But let me ask you this: How many of those fighters are first-ballot hall of famers like Mayweather? De La Hoya and Mosley (who were past their primes); Marquez (who was fighting above 135 pounds for the first time) and maybe Cotto (who was slightly faded after a few too many beatings).

And let me ask you this: How many years have transpired between the Hernandez fight and the Guerrero fight? I’ll tell you – more than 14 years!

Now let me give you a little perspective: Leonard fought Benitez, Duran (twice) and Hearns – all of whom were considered the best of boxing, regardless of weight classes, and all future hall of famers – in a 22-month span and also found time to fit top-10 welterweight contenders Dave Boy Green and Larry Bonds, as well as undefeated (36-0) WBA 154-pound titleholder Ayub Kalule, into his schedule during that time frame.

Among active fighters, Abner Mares has faced Yonnhy Perez, Vic Darchinyan, Joseph Agbeko (twice), Anselmo Moreno and Daniel Ponce de Leon, all of whom were top-five rated guys in their divisions, in a 3½-year span (and he managed to fit lower top-10 rated Eric Morel into his schedule during that time frame).

Eight of Carl Froch’s last nine opponents were arguably top-10 contenders when he faced them (all but one was either a current, future or former titleholder), and he fought them all (Jean Pascal, Jermain Taylor, Andre Dirrell, Mikkel Kessler, Arthur Abraham, Glen Johnson, Andre Ward and Lucian Bute) in a 4½-year span.

My point is this: Mayweather is special, but don’t go overboard. He has spread that vaunted record over a looooooooong period of time, and he has definitely picked his spots to moderately challenge himself. He has not fought all of the best fighters of the divisions he’s occupied. And he has not sought out the kind of challenges that would force odds makers to make him the underdog, or at least put out close odds on his fights.

Does Mayweather receive more criticism than other elite fighters? Yes, he does. But if you’re gonna call yourself the best who ever did it, you’re gonna receive more scrutiny than other fighters.

And finally, don’t give me that bulls__t about boxing being about money, “pure and simple.” The business of boxing may be, but the sport is about who they fight, when they fight ‘em, and how they fight ‘em once they’re in the ring. And greatness – in any sport or entertainment field – is never solely about money.

MERELY MORE MAYWEATHER MUSINGS

Hey Doug,

This is my second time writing in to the mailbag. I’ve been an avid reader since your Maxboxing days. Hope you keep up the good work for a long time to come. Now, on to my rant…

Great fighters like Floyd Mayweather tend to inspire both irrational hatred and fawning fanboys – neither of which is right, but both are inevitable. Some of the fanboy claims lately though have been driving me up the wall. Obviously, Floyd’s claims to being the greatest boxer of all-time are laughable. It shows not just his insane level of self-aggrandizement, but historical ignorance in general. However, I have recently read multiple claims from prominent boxing writers and commentators that claim Floyd is the best… of this era. Even that claim bears some questioning. Kevin Iole – admittedly a bigger Floyd booster than most – recently repeated several times in an article that Floyd is “unquestionably the best of his era” – or something to that effect. I personally question that very loudly.

Floyd is certainly a rare talent, and has been top 3 p4p for over a decade, but his total resume is indeed challenged by several fighters. Just among active boxers, legit fight-by-fight comparisons put the resumes of Hopkins, Pacquiao, Marquez, and Holyfield all at the same level as Floyd, or maybe even above him. Roy Jones, Joel Casamayor, and James Toney are in that argument as well, along with Erik Morales. Admittedly, several of those names are no longer viable contenders, but their overall resumes compare well with Mayweather. If one were to expand to recently retired fighters, then the likes of Lennox Lewis, Pernell Whitaker, Oscar De La Hoya, Marco Antonio Barrera, JC Chavez, Felix Trinidad, Tommy Hearns, and Kostya Tszyu are all up there with, or even beyond Floyd. While Floyd certainly has faced some top challenges, and has a fantastic overall resume, his career post Castillo (who I personally saw beating Floyd 8-4 in their first fight) has had multiple examples of missed opportunities. He shouldn’t be expected to fight killers every time out, but since 2003, Floyd frequently went after lesser competition when better fighters lurked and called him out. Floyd is of course free to do this, but he really should think about what comes out of his mouth when he takes fights against Sosa or N’dou instead of Casamayor or Freitas, Bruseles and Corley instead of Tszyu and a 140lb Hatton, and Judah and Baldomir instead of Paul Williams, Margarito, or a 147lb Cotto. Those fights weren’t necessary for Floyd to make money and win acclaim, clearly, but they certainly could have helped him sound less ignorant when making claims toward all-time greatness. The problem is claiming greatness without actually seeking it. Floyd is no ducker, but he’s also no legend. Making financial choices over legacy choices helps the bank, but prevents him from attaining the same heights as Robinson, Pep, and Armstrong.

Over the last 3 or 4 years, Andre Ward has put together a more impressive run, and I believe has overtaken Floyd for current p4p supremacy. Even if he hasn’t quite surpassed Floyd, though (I know many don’t agree with me), Ward is acting more like Floyd from 1997-2002 – taking on all comers, and fighting like his legacy matters. Keeping up his current pace will allow him to also surpass Mayweather in all-time resume and legacy sometime down the road.

I don’t hate Floyd, but I think an honest assessment of him has to acknowledge what could have been. Not all fighters are held to the standards that I hold him to, but considering his personal claims, I think it’s more than fair. If Mayweather and his fans don’t like his resume being held to close scrutiny, then they shouldn’t make claims that require historical comparisons. – Hunter, Kansas City, MO

I agree.

But fans will be fans. When Trinidad was undefeated I can’t tell you how many emails I received asking me who was the greater middleweight, Tito or Ray Robinson (this is after the Puerto Rican star had one fight at 160 pounds, his WBA title win over William Joppy). Before Roy Jones got KTFO by Antonio Tarver he had fans AND much of the boxing media proclaiming that he was not only great, but the G.O.A.T! And God forbid if anyone said otherwise. I did and I received at least five times the amount of angry emails I now receive from the Floyd Faithful.

I can go on and on, but what I’ve come to realize is that the type of fan who goes ga-ga for an active fighter, and wishes to christen him the “best ever,” is not the kind of fan who immerses his or herself into boxing’s deep history.

Regarding the media, sometimes, every so often, a fighter comes around who is so popular, charismatic or influential that even those who are supposed to know better are compelled to call them the “No. 1” of their era or all time even when the evidence to back that claim up isn’t really there. Mayweather, like Jones, De La Hoya and Mike Tyson before him, has evolved into one of these special boxers.

If memory serves me right, Iole scored the first Castillo fight 115-113 for Mayweather. I recall that he scored De La Hoya-Mayweather a draw. I don’t remember his score for the Mayweather-Judah fight, but most of press row had it 116-112 for Floyd. Now, if he thinks Castillo, De La Hoya and Judah were great fighters at the time Mayweather fought them, then I can see why he views Floyd the way he does. If not, then I think calling Mayweather “one of the best of his era” is more appropriate.

SHOTGUNS AND CHAINSAWS

Hey Dougie,

One more observation concerning May-Day. You’re probably right about how Guerrero bringing his shotgun still wouldn’t have done him any good! But no way would Floyd have shoved that gun up Guerrero’s ass like you mentioned. Why? Because even against a totally overmatched opponent, Floyd just doesn’t have the gusto in him to even throw a combination. F__k, you can give May a friggin’ chainsaw and he still would do just enough to shake his ass and peck his way to another boring victory followed by those same fans once again s___ing their pants over butchering another 70 dollars.

As for May fighting bigger guys I’m still not ruling out Canelo-Mayweather but there’s no way Floyd will challenge Gennady Golovkin! Borat here is a f___in’ one-man slaughterhouse crew! For what it’s worth May might as well have that same but FULLY LOADED shotgun shoved up his own ass! Trigger pulled and all! Or that chainsaw I just mentioned!

Speaking of Golovkin let’s talk about whom he should fight after he mashes Matthew Macklin like an overcooked Irish potato. I would suggest sicking him after Sergio Martinez but just one problem, the aging injury-prone Maravilla probably couldn’t pick his nose without ending up in traction.

Aussie tough guy Daniel Geale and knockdown king Peter Quillin would be the toughest opponents out there. Golovkin-Quillin would especially be an UNFORGETTABLE BRAWL. Any chances of seeing this one before 2014?

Now onto other upcoming fights I really want to see:

Matthysse-Peterson: Funny how you mentioned that this one’s two days before your birthday. Because it’s two days after mine! Anyways I’m hoping that Matthysse gives us a real present here and drops the roid-sucking Peterson hard on his sorry ass! And when you consider that Lamont barely scraped by Amir Khan, lost to Victor Ortiz, and even got decked by the jello-fisted Tim Bradley I think I’ll get my wish on this one!

Froch-Kessler. Froch will probably even the score in what should be another hard-hitting thriller.

Maidana-Lopez: The shotgun vs the chainsaw! I’m predicting some real nasty intentions combined with some really brutally heavy crunch-action. So nasty that Victor Ortiz will be too petrified to leave his chair. Even if he was watching it at home!

OK I’m done. I’ll get back to ya after Matthysse brutalizes Peterson. Trust me he will! See ya in ten! – Todd The Terminator

We will see, TTT. I may be in the minority, but I believe Peterson deserved the draw he earned against Ortiz and I think he gave Bradley a competitive and close fight. I also think he’ll give Matthysse a close and competitive fight, even if he’s ultimately stopped (which nobody’s done yet).

After Matthysse-Peterson, Maidana-Lopez is the fight I want to see the most, and I’m totally stoked that it’s taking place at Home Depot Center’s outdoor arena in Carson, Calif., the site of so many badass ring wars. I don’t have a favorite in this matchup, which is the way I like it.

I like Froch to beat Kessler by a close but deserved decision in front of 19,000 of his loudest fans.

I don’t think Golovkin will have a walk in the park with Macklin. That’s gonna be a fight, my friend. I think GGG will win, but he’s going to have to dig deep. Beyond Macklin, I think a showdown with Geale is very possible, if not late this year than in the first half of 2014. I think a fight with Kid Chocolate is also possible, but it might be more difficult to put together given Golovkin’s deal with HBO and Quillin’s connections to Showtime.

There’s no chance that Mayweather every faces a middleweight, but I agree that we might get the showdown with Canelo, which is a competitive fight if it happens in September or next May.

By the way, stop hating on Floyd!

ONE COMPLAINT, TWO QUESTIONS

Hey Douggie Fresh,
Been a big fan of your mailbag and the variety of topics that it always delivers. I just had a couple of things I want to get off my chest if that’s ok with you?

1) Why the hell did they move the Bika-Periban fight to the Malignaggi-Broner card? That fight has no business at the Barkley’s Center. Better yet, why move it after we’ve bought tickets? I know the Angulo-Lara and Maidana-Lopez are enough to carry the card but common man!!! I’m a fan of the cards Golden Boy put on, but “Ritchie” screwed me this time.

2) Am I way off in believing that a Canelo fight would give Mayweather more trouble than a Martinez fight?

3) Not sure if you’ve been asked about the following mythical match-ups so I’ll just throw em out there:

-Chavez vs Mayweather Jr

-Chavez vs Arguello

-Butterbean vs Chris Arreola

- The Ruelas brothers vs the Marquez brothers

Thanks, and keep on keepin it real brother. – Gerardo Raya, Wasco, Ca.

Always!

I’ll comment on your comments in order:

1) First of all, stop hating on Ritchie. I have no idea why the Bika-Periban fight was moved, but you can’t complain about it being replaced with Charlo-Hopkins when the main event, Maidana-Lopez, is almost guaranteed to be a fight-of-the-year candidate. Charlo-Hopkins might be a snoozefest, and my guess is that Lara toys with Angulo for 12 rounds, but Bika-Periban is probably going to be a typical Sakio Bika fight – ugly! Bottom line is that you’re going to witness Marcos Maidana and Josesito Lopez trade heavy leather for however long that fight lasts (and I think it will go the distance). You’re lucky!

2) You’re not way off, but you’re a little off. Yeah, Martinez is fading but he’s still got a world of experience on Canelo, plus an awkward style, along with comparable (or maybe slighter better) speed and power to the red head. Plus, Maravilla is used to banging with much bigger guys than Floyd. I still think Martinez would give Mayweather a better fight than Canelo, though that could change in a year.

3) Mythical matchups:

Chavez vs Mayweather Jr – Chavez by UD at 130, 135 and 140; Mayweather by UD at 147

Chavez vs Arguello – Arguello by late stoppage at 130, Chavez by UD at 135 and by late TKO at 140

Butterbean vs Chris Arreola – Arreola by early KO (and he beat the Bean in a eating or drinking contest, too)

The Ruelas brothers vs the Marquez brothers – I love the Ruelas brothers by Juan Manuel Marquez would take both to school at 130 or 135 pounds (undersized Rafael wouldn’t have to be involved; he could just cheer his big bro on while sipping his favorite cerveza at ringside)

BOB FOSTER

Hey Doug!
Longtime reader, first time writing. I saw the Q&A with Bob Foster on the website earlier this week (man that guy could whack!) and I started doing some digging on the great light heavies of the past; this reminded me of why the 175 lb division is one of my favourites. I’ve gotta couple mythical matchups for you.

Bob Foster vs. Archie Moore (15 rounder)

Jack Delaney vs. Andre Ward  (175 lbs, 12 rounds)

Bob Fitzsimmons vs. Bernard Hopkins (175lbs, 12 rounds)

Keep up the good work Dougie! – Hank, Prince George, BC, Canada

The Foster Q&A was a lot of fun to read and edit. Many thanks to R.A. The Rugged Man for submitting it, and the Ken Norton Q&A, to us for your approval (and enjoyment). R.A. knows his boxing and his hall of famers and he’s got a way of getting them to “let their hands go” in an interview they way they used to get down in the ring. Hey, just for s__ts and giggles, check out this boxing freestyle rap from R.A.

Anyway, on to your mythical light heavyweight matchups:

I’ll take Moore over Foster by late stoppage, Ward over Delaney by unpopular unanimous decision, and B-Hop over Ruby Robert with a gritty, hard-fought, up-from-the-canvas decision victory.

MYTHICAL MATCHUPS

Hello Mr. Fisher,

I am a long time reader first time emailer. Let me start by saying I greatly enjoy your work. While I may not always agree with you your arguments are both consistent and unbiased. Ok enough of that. I know that your mailbag is going to be littered with Mayweather questions so I’m going to avoid that subject altogether. Instead here’s a few mythical matchups.

Everyone talks about the big 4 from the ‘80s: Hagler, Hearns, Leonard and Duran. My fay fighter from that era and one who is forgotten sometimes is Mike McCallum.

I would like your thoughts on how he matches up with those 4. My thoughts are that he gets a KO with Hearns, UD over Duran, a draw with Leonard and gets stopped by Hagler.

Two more for you: Pernell Whitaker vs Sugar Ray Leonard at 147, and Michael Nunn vs Winky Wright at 160. I think those are two tactical yet entertaining matchups.
 

P.S. Saw Iron Man 3 and loved it. As a fellow comic nerd I’m sure you will as well. Hope you get to see it soon.
 

Thanks for all the mailbags. – DeMarkus from H-Town

Thanks for the kind words, DeMarkus, and thanks for finally writing me.

I haven’t seen Iron Man 3, yet but I will, maybe this weekend.

I think Nunn, the bigger, taller, rangier, faster and more mobile southpaw, would outpoint Wright in a tactical match than only purists would enjoy.

I think Leonard would have struggled with Whitaker for five or six rounds before surging over the second half of the bout and stopping a game but overwhelmed Sweet Pea before the 10th round. Ray was just too big, fast, powerful, busy and intelligent for Whitaker to befuddle or avoid for very long.

The Body Snatcher is also one of my favorite fighters of the ‘80s (although I didn’t appreciate him until the early ‘90s).

I think he would have outpointed Duran, scored a mid-rounds knockout of Hearns, and dropped close decisions to Leonard and Hagler.

 

 

Photos / Ethan Miller-Getty Images, THE RING, Jed Jacobsohn-Getty Images

Email Dougie at dfischer@ringtv.com. Follow him on Twitter @dougiefischer

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