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Boxing

10 World’s Best Boxers of All Time

World's Best Boxers
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Boxing is personal. Talking about the best boxers in the world is a subjective topic, and looking at the boxing odds, many factors play a role, especially when it comes to a boxer’s achievements and accolades. In this post, we’ve included ten world’s best boxers, including three heavyweight boxing champions. Of course, Muhammad Ali leads the list, and Rocky Marciano and Floyd Mayweather Jr. are the only ones who remained undefeated.

As of now, Canelo Alvarez, Naoya Inoue, and Gervonta Davis are the most prominent names. It is safe to say that they will continue to win more fights as well as titles. So, without wasting any more words, let’s jump to the list we’ve prepared for you.

List of Boxers:

  1. Muhammad Ali
  2. Joe Louis
  3. Sugar Ray Robinson
  4. Rocky Marciano
  5. Floyd Mayweather Jr.
  6. Manny Pacquiao
  7. Jack Dempsey
  8. Roberto Duran
  9. Henry Armstrong
  10. Willie Pep

Here’s an in-depth summary of each boxer.

Number #10: Willie Pep (229-11-1)

Perhaps one of the greatest featherweight champions in history, Pep is famous for his all-time amazing defensive skills. Although there is no official record, stories suggest that Pep even won a round without throwing a punch by making his opponent miss every punch thrown at him. He reigned in the featherweight division between 1942 to 1948 and 1949 to 1950.

Nicknamed “Will O’ the Wisp,” Pep had an 11-3 record, including five knockouts in world title fights, and a 13-5 record against former, current, and future champions. He defeated famous fighters such as Sandy Saddler, Chalky Wright, Manuel Ortiz, and Jackie Wilson. In his 241 career fights, he won 229 (65 by TKO/KO), lost only 11 times, and had one draw.

He was honored for his skill and inducted into the International Boxing Hall of Fame in 1990.

Number #9: Henry Armstrong (149-21-10)

Henry Armstrong is a multi-division champion known for being an undisputed champion in different weight classes. His professional career speaks for itself as he became the simultaneous king in the featherweight, lightweight, and welterweight divisions.

Although his reign in 1938 lasted only a few months, Armstrong’s footwork was unparalleled and unmatched by any other boxer. Armstrong defeated 18 opponents in world title fights, with most of his victories coming in the welterweight division.

Known as “Homicide Hank,” he defeated proficient fighters like Chalky Wright, Lou Ambers, Barney Ross, and Tippy Larkin. Overall, he accumulated 149 wins, 21 losses, and 10 draws in his 14-year professional career.

Number #8: Roberto Duran (103-16)

Roberto Duran, one of Panama’s greatest boxers, is eighth on our list. Over his 33-year career, he won four titles in four different divisions: lightweight, welterweight, light middleweight, and middleweight. Duran fought in 119 matches, winning 103 with 70 by TKO/KO, and lost only 16 times. He is well-known for his match against Ken Buchanan on June 26, 1972, where he won his first world title by defeating Buchanan in Madison Square Garden to become WBA Lightweight Champion.

Top names on Duran’s victim list include Sugar Ray Leonard, Ken Buchanan, Davey Moore, and Ernesto Marcel. He also won the Ring Magazine Comeback of the Year award twice, in 1983 and 1989.

Number #7: Jack Dempsey (53-6-8)

Jack Dempsey, known as the “Manassa Mauler,” was the original boxing cash cow, being the first boxer in history to generate over $1,000,000 in gate receipts due to his exciting fights and hyper-performances. The legendary heavyweight fighter revolutionized the sport through his power and aggressive fighting style, making him one of the most celebrated figures in boxing history.

On July 4, 1919, Dempsey challenged Willard for the World Heavyweight Championship in Toledo, Ohio. This fight marked Dempsey’s ascension to boxing stardom as he brutally knocked out Willard in the first round to claim the title.

From 1919 to 1923, Dempsey was the world heavyweight champion. He was also the inaugural NBA World Heavyweight Champion and NYSAC World Heavyweight Champion. In his 12-year career, he won 53 of his 67 bouts, lost only six times, and had eight draws.

Number #6: Manny Pacquiao (62-8-2)

Manny Pacquiao is often regarded as one of the greatest boxers of all time. He is the only boxer in history to win a total of eight world titles from different weight divisions, earning him a place in the top 10. Pacquiao fought Marco Antonio Barrera, a legendary Mexican boxer, in San Antonio, Texas, where he dominated the fight and secured a technical knockout victory in the 11th round.

The Filipino boxing superstar began his career as a 106-pounder in 1995. Since then, he has gradually moved to higher weight classes and faced multiple competitions. Notable wins include victories over Juan Manuel Marquez, Miguel Cotto, Oscar De La Hoya, and Marco Antonio Barrera.

Number #5: Floyd Mayweather Jr. (50-0)

Floyd Mayweather Jr.’s career is characterized by his undefeated record, defensive wizardry, and ability to generate massive pay-per-view numbers. He holds the record for the most wins without a loss in his 50+ matches, including 27 victories via stoppage. In 2017, he came out of retirement to face UFC superstar Conor McGregor in a boxing match. Despite McGregor’s efforts, Mayweather’s experience and skill prevailed, extending his undefeated record to 50-0 with a TKO in the 10th round.

Some of the other big names he defeated include Oscar De La Hoya, Manny Pacquiao, Marcos Maidana, Arturo Gatti, and Shane Mosley. Aside from having zero losses, “Money Mayweather” holds the record for the most world titles held simultaneously (five) and is tied for the most world title victories with Evander Holyfield.

Number #4: Rocky Marciano (49-0)

Rocky Marciano, another undefeated boxer on this list, won 49 fights with 43 knockouts in his career. He also participated in the heavyweight division, arguably the most famous weight class in the sport.

Nicknamed “Brockton Blockbuster,” Marciano holds the title of world heavyweight champion with the shortest reach in history. His indomitable spirit, iron chin, and punching power made him one of the top contenders, and his ability to overcome adversity solidified his legacy as one of the greatest heavyweight champions of all time. Marciano challenged Walcott on September 23, 1952, for the World Heavyweight Championship in Philadelphia. Despite being knocked down in the first round, Marciano rallied and delivered a devastating right hand in the 13th round, knocking out Walcott and capturing the title.

Number #3: Sugar Ray Robinson (174-19-6)

Sugar Ray Robinson is celebrated for his incredible talent, versatility, and dominance in multiple weight classes. His fights against some of the best boxers are worthwhile to watch, especially for learners. On February 14, 1951, Robinson and LaMotta engaged in their sixth and final fight, which was later popularly referred to as the ‘St. Valentine’s Day Massacre’ due to its intensity and the date of the bout. In this match, Robinson defeated LaMotta via technical knockout in the thirteenth round.

Robinson took down many big names, including Henry Armstrong, Jake LaMotta, Fritzie Zivic, Kid Gavilan, and Sammy Angott. He competed in 22 world title fights, winning 14, including seven by knockout, with seven losses and a draw.

Another key match to remember was on July 11, 1949, when Robinson faced Gavilan for the World Welterweight Championship in Philadelphia. Despite being knocked down in the fourth round, Robinson rallied and won a close and controversial split decision to capture the title.

Number #2: Joe Louis (66-3)

Second on the list is Joe Louis. The ‘Brown Bomber’ made headlines with his power, knocking out 52 of his 66 opponents. Joe Louis’ career is celebrated not only for his dominance in the ring but also for his impact on American culture and society. His fights against top contenders and his role as a symbol of hope and pride for many Americans, particularly during World War II, solidify his legacy as one of boxing’s greatest champions.

Louis amassed a record of 27 wins (with 23 knockouts) and one defeat in world title fights and notably beat the likes of Max Schmeling, Jim Braddock, Jersey Joe Walcott, and Primo Carnera.

His victory over former heavyweight champion Carnera was significant, establishing him as a serious contender in the heavyweight division. Louis knocked out Carnera in the sixth round, demonstrating his massive power and skill.

Number #1: Muhammad Ali (56-5)

Topping the list of the world’s best boxers is Muhammad Ali. His career is marked by exceptional boxing skills, a larger-than-life personality, and his impact on social and political issues. Ali holds multiple trophies, national titles, and an Olympic Gold Medal. He transitioned smoothly to the professional setting in the 1960s, fighting some of the greatest heavyweights of his era. His willingness to stand up for his beliefs makes him an enduring icon and a superstar.

After a 19-fight unbeaten streak, Ali earned his title shot and beat Sonny Liston in February 1964. He defended it 11 times before Joe Frazier handed him his first career loss.

But ‘the Greatest’ didn’t lose hope. He was able to capture the title again and again. His combination of skills, charisma, and social impact make him one of the most-loved fighters. Even Mike Tyson regards him as the King of the Ring.

Ali’s most notable victories include his win against George Foreman in the “Rumble in the Jungle” and his legendary trilogy with Joe Frazier, culminating in the “Thrilla in Manila.” Ali’s ability to adapt his style, whether employing the rope-a-dope tactic or showcasing his incredible footwork and speed, cemented his reputation as the greatest boxer of all time.

Ali’s career was not just defined by his success in the ring. His outspoken nature and refusal to be drafted into the Vietnam War highlighted his principles and willingness to stand up for his beliefs, even at great personal cost. This combination of athletic prowess and social activism has left an indelible mark on the sport and the world at large.

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Mike Coleman is a certified nutritionist and fitness expert with over a decade of experience in the health and wellness industry. He is passionate about helping people achieve optimal health through a holistic approach to nutrition and lifestyle. Mike holds a Bachelor's degree in Nutrition Science from the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) and a Master's degree in Exercise Physiology from the University of Southern California (USC). He has worked with a wide range of clients, from professional athletes to everyday individuals seeking to improve their health. As a health blogger, Mike aims to educate and inspire his readers to make positive changes in their lives. He shares practical tips and strategies for healthy eating, exercise, stress management, and more. His writing style is engaging, informative, and accessible, making complex health topics easy to understand. In addition to his work as a blogger, Mike also serves as a consultant for health and wellness companies and regularly speaks at conferences and events on the topics of nutrition and fitness.

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