This series of articles explore 15 fights that every sports fan should know.
- 11.) Marciano v Walcott
Over 50 years later, this bout is still considered one of the best match-ups in boxing history. Here’s what ESPN had to say about it:
“Right from the opening bell, Walcott made a liar out of the naysayers who said that he was too old and no match for “The Rock.” … Walcott floored Marciano early in the first round, the first time in his 43-fight professional career that Rocky had ever been down…
By Round 6 “The Rock” had taken the battle to Walcott and made him fight his kind of fight, backing the champion to the ropes and unloading with both hands. Marciano suffered a deep gash on his head and Walcott a cut eyelid during one of their impromptu — but more than occasional — clashing of heads. As the bell rang, blood was flowing freely from Walcott’s damaged left eye and the end looked imminent for the oldest champion ever to defend his crown.”
You can watch the fight in its entirety over on YouTube (Marciano-Walcott)
- 12.) Foreman v Lyle
Foreman-Lyle is considered by many to be George Foreman’s greatest fight. Foreman himself said Lyle was one of only three genuine punchers he faced during his whole career (interestingly enough, Ali didn’t make the list).
Unlike Hagler-Hearns, the first round starts slowly with both men feeling each other out. Lyle opens with a wild haymaker, before pulling back to a more reserved strategy. Once the two men each land a couple punches, however, things really heat up. The bout turns into a real-life Rock ‘Em Sock ‘Em Robots, with both men almost standing still as they exchange big shots.
- 13.) Barrera-Morales
Having just rewatched this fight, all I can say is “wow“.
The WBC super bantamweight / WBO super bantamweight titles were on the line and it was toe-to-toe from the very beginning with neither fighter backing down. Marco Antonio Barrera plays defense, keeping his guard up, laying in wait and then exploding with some vicious upper-cuts.
It’s a fantastic fight from beginning to end and I definitely recommend that you check it out over on YouTube (Barrera-Morales)
- 14.) Holyfield v Bowe I
While the second two match-ups in this trilogy were derailed by weight-gain, hepatitis and a guy known as “fan man“, the first fight between Evander Holyfield and Riddick Bowe was wonderful.
These two men were sparring partners earlier in their careers, and both came into the bout with something to prove. Riddick Bowe was in the best shape of his life for the first fight. With the world heavyweight championship on the line, both fighters came to compete.
Unfortunately, after Holyfield-Bowe 3, Riddick Bowe’s career would quickly flame out. Though their careers were on opposite trajectories, in 1992, the men were evenly matched. Round 10’s now considered one of the greatest rounds in heavyweight history.
- 15.) Andries v Harding
Tyson was watching fron the audience that night in 1989 as Dennis Andries and Jeff Harding battled it out for the WBC World Light Heavyweight Title. It was a fight that BoxingNews24 called “No Running, No Hugging, just Slugging”.
The fight begins technical but quickly turns into a brawl. Two relentless fighters slugging it out for 12 rounds, neither one backing down. When it was all over, a bloodied Jeff Harding would become the first Australian to win the light heavyweight title.
As always, you can see the fight over on YouTube (Andries-Harding)
- Liston-Williams II