5 Best Boxing Heavyweight Champions
The 5 best boxing heavyweight champions are a diverse group. They come from very different eras and they had totally different styles. They had one main quality in common. Each of them left behind a legacy of total dominance, destroying their competition utterly and memorably.
- Joe Louis. He was champion from 1937 through 1949, holding the title longer than any other heavyweight champion in history. He dominated his opposition with incredible one punch KO power. Louis wasn’t necessarily as fast as some other fighters, but he had perfect mechanics with his punches, and often he could turn a fight around in an instant. Joe Louis won 66 fights with 52 wins coming by KO, and only three losses in his professional career.
- Muhammad Ali. There is almost no doubt that Ali was the fastest of all the heavyweight champions. He was so quick in his prime that he made many great fighters look like amateurs. He had enough power to get knockouts as well, but he generally preferred to wear his opponents down gradually. Later in his career, when he slowed down, he had some tougher fights, which enabled him to demonstrate incredible courage in the ring, along with unrivaled toughness.Over the course of his career, Ali won 56 fights, with five losses, and 37 KOs.
- Jack Dempsey. His nickname was the mannasa mauler, and he was absolutely a brutal fighter. He fought with a low crouching style, stalking his opponents with vicious intent. Jack Dempsey became incredibly popular, partly because of his knockout wins, and partly because of his reputation as a party guy during the roaring '20s. Inactivity eventually hurt his career, but in his prime, people thought he was invincible. He won 61 fights in his career, with six losses and an impressive 50 KOs.
- Rocky Marciano. He was the only one of the boxing heavyweight champions to retire undefeated. Marciano had an incredible record of 49 – 0, with 43 Knockouts. Many people considered him a slow plodding fighter, but he actually had subtle defensive skills to go with his fantastic punching power. Marciano sometimes lost a few rounds early in a fight before eventually stopping his opponent later on. He could hit very powerfully with both hands, and he knew how to wear down his opposition.
- Lennox Lewis. He was almost six and a half feet tall, towering over most other heavyweights in his time but it wasn’t just size that made him one of the greatest boxing heavyweight champions. Unlike other giant heavyweights in the past, Lewis had tremendous boxing skills. He was a strategist in the ring, and coupled his vicious power with excellent defense and ring savvy. He lost a few fights over the course of his career, but he was able to avenge every one of his losses convincingly in rematches, making him one of the few heavyweight champions to beat every man he ever fought. Lewis won 42 fights, with only two losses, and 32 of those wins were big knockouts.