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What makes a great boxer



First of two parts
Somebody shared with me the link for the BoxRec Greatest of All Time list, which is starting to get some positive and negative reactions.

The list comes from BoxRec that has a website It calls itself Boxing’s Official Record Keeper, and you could even view the records of great boxers from the past like Joe Louis and Flash Elorde, among others. The records of boxers who never made it to the top could also be found from


BoxRec recently listed 25 boxers that it considers the Greatest of All Time, with Floyd Mayweather Jr. and Manny Pacquiao topping the list. Former middleweight champion Carlos Monzon from Argentina followed at number three and three-time heavyweight titlist Muhammad Ali was in fourth.

Ali’s landing in fourth in the top four is sure to raise eyebrows, as “The Greatest” is still seen as making an impact beyond the sports of boxing and is widely acknowledged as having one of the fastest hands. Also, while Monzon was a great fighter himself, his impact on the sport is not as great as Ali’s.

So what about Mayweather taking the top spot?

Shall we accept the fact that Mayweather is greater than Ali. Or is Pacquiao greater than Ali?

Or are we ready to accept that Mayweather is greater than Pacquiao?

And Sugar Ray Robinson taking fifth spot in the list seems misplaced.

I would also question Bernard Hopkins occupying sixth spot ahead of Joe Louis who was at seventh and Archie Moore at eighth.

So, I have so many questions as to how BoxRec came out with its own greatest boxers of all time list.

Before I proceed, let me state I still strongly believe that Robinson is still the greatest boxer of all time. His figuring in over 200 bouts and winning 174 of them with 109 by knockouts still sounds inhuman. Also, his losing only once by knockout from so many bouts speaks volumes of his ability and durability. More can still be said of Robinson that makes him the best boxer of all time. But I will not discuss them in this column.

So obviously, I feel Mayweather is not the greatest boxer of all time. I even believe Ali is still greater than Mayweather.

Mayweather, even if he is still undefeated, should rank below Robinson and Ali, or at third.

What about Pacquiao? It is very hard not to rank Pacquiao in any all-time great list as he collared championships in eight divisions, which is no small feat considering his first title was at flyweight (112 pounds) and his heaviest championship was junior middleweight (154 pounds), or a spread of 42 pounds.

Now, should Pacquiao be ranked above Mayweather? Here is where the fierce debate could ensue, but those who favor Mayweather would surely point to the American’s decision victory over Pacquiao in May 2015.

So far, I have raised more questions on who should constitute the list of greatest boxers of all time. And seeking answers to those questions is not easy.

In the second part of this column-series, I will discuss who I believe should make up any list for the all-time greats for boxing.


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