September 15th 2013 |
We were introduced to the fine arts of pugilism in our teenage years, and enjoyed the discipline of the punch-bag, light on our feet, landing blows against a sullen and unresponsive foe.
It was when we tried to transfer these skills to the ring that we found that boxing was not all it was cracked up to be. Once the passive punch-bag is replaced with another person, determined to punch you very hard in the face, the Queensbury Rules lose their allure somewhat, and we decided to find a less painful way of getting fit. We have grown into gentlemen who are more than happy to let others punch people very hard in the face for fun and profit, whilst sitting at ringside, offering advice like old pros.
For example: ″Go on, lad. Punch him very hard in the face.″
Or, if the fight seems to be slipping away: ″Go on lad, try to stop him punching you very hard in the face.″
So, we ask, who are the top boxers in the world? Obviously, each is entitled to his view, and everybody’s opinion is different. Unfortunately, due to boxing’s very nature, such disagreements over who is the best usually end up in the ring, settled by punching each other very hard in the head.
For the record, the top three men ever to set foot in the ring are:
- Mohammed Ali
We never saw Ali at his very best, after he lost his peak years through suspension. But despite that he was head and shoulders above anybody else in his time. Nobody even came close, and added to his reputation as a showman, and his outspoken support for causes near to his heart that lost him supports in certain sectors of American society, the man’s name is still electrifying today.
- Joe Louis
In his peak, there was nobody who even came close to Joe. He rightfully tussles with Ali as the best boxer to ever step foot in the ring, and his greatest defeat – to the German wunderkind Max Schmelling – was more than avenged with a sensational first round knock-out in the return fight. World War II disrupted his career, and he was never the same in his twilight years. But what a fighter.
- Mike Tyson
Controversial choice here, because you either love or hate Iron Mike. As a boxer, he was unstoppable. We watched in awe as he demolished opponent after opponent, and was quite rightdully to most feared fighter of our times. As a person, he was (and still is) a complete car crash. A personal life filled with violence and prison, he admits that he made very bad decisions and paid the price. He could have been the best ever, but blew it.
Those are our choices, and we will fight anybody who disagrees.