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Top 10 best British performances of the 21st Century..

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Post by TRUSSMAN66 on Thu Jun 04, 2020 3:35 pm

Some fighters appear more than once...But these were exceptional efforts..

10. Taylor v Prograis...Think Prograis will be very special...What does that say about Taylor ??

9. Lewis v Vitali....An ancient champion still bettering a guy that would jointly dominate Boxing for years..Not given enough credit Lennox for this.

8. Calzaghe v Kessler...Bit like above...But much more dominant performance..

7. Fury v Wilder 2....Excellent performance..Took it to a big hitter..Lots of Bollox.

6. Brook v Porter...Porter has shown his colors since and Brook won in his backyard...Excellent show.

5. Froch v Bute....Hard to believe this one sided slap was a pickem..Bute was overrated but respected...Dominant.

4. Warrington v Frampton...Love the way he manhandled an excellent fighter...Big fan of Josh....Full of surprises.

3. Hatton v Tszyu..Kosta was a top pound for pounder and Hatton fought like his hero Duran for one special night.

2. Fury v Wlad....Confounded the odds against a 10 year unbeaten great in his own backyard..

1. Calzaghe v Lacy....A la Nunn v Tate...Top fighter completely outboxed in his prime....Exceptional.

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Post by Soul Requiem on Thu Jun 04, 2020 4:34 pm

Loose use of the term performance there Truss with regards to Fury against Wlad is one of the best wins by a British boxer but the performance itself was rancid, Wlad was just worse. Aside from that wouldn't argue too much against the other nine, would probably have Fury's win over Wilder a bit higher.

I quite enjoyed Ricky Burns against Roman Martinez, dropped heavily in the first round but through sheer will dragged himself back into it and excelled down the stretch to secure a deserved decision, for all the nonsense of being a triple weight champion he does in fact have some more notable victories. He was punch perfect against Katsidis, dealt with Kevin Mitchell and Paulus Moses easily enough. On top of that Relikh, Gonzalez and Cardle were no mugs either.

Amir Khan beating Maidana was much in the same vein, brilliant for 8 rounds dropping him early with a body shot, something he didn't utilise enough during his career, stopped Judah with a peach of a shot too, in all manner of problems in the tenth but clung on to defend his title. Another guy who actually has a lot of good wins but gets somewhat overlooked for his attitude more than anything, the loss to Peterson still stinks; the referee, the points deductions, the scorecards and the failed drugs test, he deserved better from the commission and governing bodies there.

I'm tempted to include Hamed against Sanchez for the final combination alone but won't as he was pretty sloppy throughout.

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Post by TRUSSMAN66 on Thu Jun 04, 2020 4:51 pm

Excellent reply...and I get your critique of some of my choices....Good additions on your list too..

But I still like my Top 10....

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Post by 88Chris05 on Thu Jun 04, 2020 9:58 pm

Good list Truss, although I agree with Soul that Khan-Maidana and Burns-Martinez should be in there somewhere. I'd get rid of Lewis-Vitali for starters. Brilliant result on paper for Lewis but a pretty unsatisfactory performance. I'd take Warrington out as well, purely because I think he's a little scrot.

Glad to see Taylor-Prograis mentioned, albeit I thought Prograis deserved a draw. But one of the best world title fights in a British ring in years. And refreshing to see a bout with proper inside fighting and punching out of the clinch, with a referee who let them work in close, let the fight flow and wasn't jumping in to separate them all the time. I'd be tempted to move it up the list a little.

A few other possible suggestions....

Thompson against Haye. I know Haye was still a little wet behind the ears but he was already seen as the next star of the division, and Thomspon was supposed to be a safe bet. Old manned and out-toughed him.

Barker against Geale. He did very well getting up and then recovering from that body shot knockdown and went on to outbox a decent fighter in Geale.

Witter against Harris. Junior finally managing to produce something memorable on the bigger stage. Could have set him up for a Hatton fight the following year when Hatton came back to the UK after the Mayweather loss. Wasn't to be.

Not sure any of those three would make a top ten, but all good and significant performances.
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Post by TRUSSMAN66 on Thu Jun 04, 2020 10:42 pm

Guess Soul and yourself picking out Khan v Maidana probably means I don't respect the victory enough perhaps....Slightly biased probably for the way he was out on his feet..

Harris lost to the awful Maussa which means I ruled that out though I rated Witter who like Graham sold himself short....Hatton v Witter was a shame it didn't come off..

But I can see where you are coming from apart from Barker v Geale.....Geale would have been smashed by any half decent middle of the last 40 years...Pick anyone from Mustafa Hamsho to Michael Olajide to beat him...Sad that Barker was a champ when Michael Watson and Herol Graham types were more deserving.

Unfortunately Warrington being a Scrot is not reason enough to leave him off....Thompson was a walking punching bag until Haye got knackered and pretty much quit so probably more like Top 20 for me..

Had respect for Thompson though and if Eubank's eye hadn't of gone it would have been Top 3 had he won for sure...In fairness I considered Eubank Benn 1 for the list..

Interesting post as always...Good night..

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Post by Soul Requiem on Fri Jun 05, 2020 8:21 am

In your defence with regards to the Khan fight, it has to be said he was on the verge of defeat and I reckon a different referee may well have stopped the fight in that tenth round

Froch's win over Bute has to be my favourite of recent years. The relentless attack and yet again highlighted what a tough sod he was, Bute was landing some good shots as Froch jumped in but he brushed them off as if he was in with a non puncher, once he got him on the ropes he went to work and it was a joy to watch, great value was old Carl. Pascal, Taylor, Dirrell, Kessler, Abraham and Groves on top is quite a record, unfortunate to have run into peak Andre Ward.

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Post by TRUSSMAN66 on Fri Jun 05, 2020 1:42 pm

Ward was the ultimate spoiler...Great for him but not great for the fans....But if you wanted to make money and not get hurt it was the perfect style..

Very similar fighter to the great Jack Johnson..

Work...Spoil.. Work...Spoil...

You are right...However narcissistic Froch was out of the ring...He was always watchable..

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Post by Soul Requiem on Fri Jun 05, 2020 2:57 pm

On closer inspection i'd swap Calzaghe's wins around, the Lacy performance was more dominant but against Kessler he had adapt after a few rounds and used his jab to great effect after the 5th round something he's not normally noted for, that adaptability and the far better opponent should see it higher up the list.

Not a particularly memorable fight but Clinton Woods beating Julio Cesar Gonzalez is worth a mention, not long off dethroning the somewhat under rated Dariusz Michalczsewki; another guy who made the most of his talent and a shame that after a decent run of wins he failed to show up against Tarver which seemed a common occurrence for British boxers in the early part of the century.

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Post by TRUSSMAN66 on Fri Jun 05, 2020 3:11 pm

My recollection of Woods was he got the most out of his limited ability....and fair play to him..

Know he lost to Glen Johnson twice...Always put Clinton slightly above the level of the guy that fought an old Nunn and didn't back himself Crawford Ashley...

But Woods was a World Champion and always have more time for those that get the most out of their talent..So well done to him.

Have to watch the fight you mention sometime...Can't recall it.

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Post by Soul Requiem on Fri Jun 05, 2020 3:16 pm

Split a three fight series 1-1-1 with Johnson and I do believe beat an old Crawford Ashley ironically. I wouldn't worry to much about watching it, you're not missing much excitement wise.

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Post by 88Chris05 on Fri Jun 05, 2020 6:25 pm

Interesting that, to this day, Calzaghe's win against Lacy is pretty much always rated comfortably higher than Froch's against Bute. Could just be that Calzaghe is similarly rated higher as an all-round fighter than Froch, and I guess there are always plenty of people who prefer a more artistic twelve-round clinic over a relatively early and brutal blowout.

But both were narrow underdogs - Froch more so, actually, as Calzaghe-Lacy was only a smidgen off being a pick'em with the bookies - and both Lacy and Bute came in with pretty similar reputations. Lacy more renowned for his brute power, and both of them had built up their reputations against pretty average opposition on the whole, but if anything Bute's record had more quality and he'd won his fair share of plaudits for his all-round skills and game, which wasn't exactly short of knockouts either.

With the advantage of hindsight we can probably agree that both Lacy and Bute weren't as good as the hype suggested and received a bit too much credit considering they'd not been pitted against a top opponent at that point. But from what I've seen that tends to get used more to detract (if that's the right word) from Froch's win than it does Calzaghe's, with more people arguing that Calzaghe effectively finished Lacy's career that night, hence why Lacy's career record is so unremarkable. But I think it's fair to say that if Lacy doing nothing after losing to Calzaghe is the result of Calzaghe knocking all the fight and spark out of him, then Froch must have done just as dominant and damaging a job on Bute, because he looked a shell after that loss, too.

I agree with Calzaghe's performance being higher and more fondly remembered, just think maybe the margins (not necessarily in your list, beefster) are a bit wide at times. Quite a lot of similarities between them.
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Post by Mr Bounce on Sat Jun 06, 2020 8:51 pm

The hype behind Lacy was huge. If the American boxing press were to be believed, he was going to be "The New Mike Tyson" despite having only really beaten fringe contender Omar Sheika (on points), an ancient Robin Reid and the distinctly average Scott Pemberton. Calzaghe was something like 40-0 going in to this fight and from what I remember reading, the general consensus was that his time had come and Lacy would wipe the floor with him. After the first few exchanges Joe knew he had him and took him to school. One of the best displays of boxing I have ever seen. Lacy deserved credit for staying upright as he was a blood-soaked mess. I am amazed his corner didn't pull him out. Still, I pretty much agree with that fight being at number one.

Not sure if I can include Fury-Wlad simply because off the lack of action in the fight. Certainly not one I would like to watch again, even if I had insomnia. It wasn't a "performance" from Fury, it was more a simple work to a game plan and get the job done. He did that, but it wasn't entertainment.

As an aside, how about Froch against Abraham? Coming back from a poor performance against Kessler he dominated the tough Abraham, outclassing him to become the first man to beat him (I don't count the Dirrell DQ as a loss in the normal sense of the word - Abraham was stupid to throw those punches, so therefore beat himself).

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Post by 88Chris05 on Sat Jun 06, 2020 11:50 pm

Froch certainly did a nice little number on Abraham, Mr Bounce. Probably the quickest Froch has ever looked in a boxing ring (speed was never Abraham's strong point) and he enjoyed using the jab more, putting together more combinations and moving around a bit more.

But Abraham was absolutely awful in that fight and could barely have made things any easier for Froch even if he'd tried. Just aimlessly followed him around, high guard pressed right against his head, always reacting rather than trying to switch it up. Just gave Froch a licence to tee off whenever he wanted and wasn't even trying to counter.

I'm not sure what happened to Abraham throughout the course of that Super Six series. Had obviously strung together plenty of IBF defences at 160 and claimed he moved up to 168 largely because Pavlik was running from a unification bout his team had been trying to make. People thought me might be up against it at Super-Middle given his style and relative lack of height, but made light of that against Taylor in his first fight (I know Taylor was a former Middleweight, but he was a big one whose style was better-suited to weight rising). I think most people knew that Pavlik and Froch had knocked something out of Taylor which was never to be returned, but even so Abraham was the first guy to better him from first punch to last. The early signs were that his power had carried up.

There was a feeling that Dirrell had then exposed his straight-up style and lack of imagination, but while he was definitely out-boxed for a long stretch and a long way behind on points he was coming on well and strongly in the late rounds, and it'd have been interesting to see what might have happened in those last few minutes had he not got himself disqualified. But even though Dirrell gave him a torrid time, the punch still appeared to be there and, more to the point, he still always looked willing and focussed.

But that just seemed to evaporate in the Froch and Ward fights, as if he'd accepted his fate as soon as the opening bell rang in both fights, or maybe even before that point. He looked like he didn't want to be there against Froch. Would have been up against it beating either of those guys at the best of times, but when the fights did come I was amazed at how disheartened and poor he looked, albeit both Froch and Ward still produced good performances against him.

I was actually surprised that he had any success after that, albeit he was never in the proper big time again.
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