Boxing is a favorite American pastime. It's competition in the purist form, pitting one athlete against another in a struggle of strength, skills, toughness, and wits. Below is a list of the top five boxers in American history.
Sugar Ray Robinson was born in Walker Smith Jr. in May 3, 1921, and is arguably the best boxers of all time. Robinson has won the Middleweight Championship 5 times. He is known for challenging many great fighters and won against a host of Hall of Fame boxers such as Jake LaMotta, Kid Gavilan, and Rocky Graziano. He made a professional debut on October 4, 1940 and was inducted into the International Boxing Hall of Fame in 1990.
Muhammad Ali, born Cassius Marcellus Clay, Jr., January 17, 1942, is a legendary American boxer who has won three heavyweight championships in his career. He is famous for his quote "float like a butterfly, sting like a bee," which aptly described his boxing style. It was unusual that Ali, a heavyweight boxer, relied on foot speed and quickness to avoid punches from his opponents. He has fought with many other outstanding boxers such as Ken Norton, Sonny Liston, George Foreman, Leon Spinks and Joe Frazier. There is no doubt that Ali was one of the most exciting, outspoken, and undefeated boxing sensations in his prime. However, later in life, Ali developed Parkinson's disease.
Michael Gerard "Mike" Tyson was born in June 30, 1966. In the 80’s and early 90’s, Tyson was almost unbeatable and was known to knock down the opponents within the first few rounds with his power punch. He was the first heavyweight boxer ever to hold the WBA, WBC and IBF titles simultaneously. Tyson lost his titles in one of the biggest upsets in boxing history to underdog Buster Douglas on February 11, 1990, in Tokyo, Japan. Tyson’s career then went downhill after he was convicted of raping Desiree Washington. Tyson is also famous for biting off a portion of Holyfield's ear during the match in 1997.
Joseph Louis Barrow was born in May 13, 1914 and passed away in April 12, 1981. He was better known as Joe Louis and was the world heavyweight boxing champion from 1937 to 1949. He is known for his famous quote “he can run, but he can’t hide” and “everyone has a plan until they’ve been hit.” Joe Louis had only 1 true loss, which was against Germany’s Max Schmeling. After the defeat, he retaliated by soundly defeating Schmeling in an incredible first round KO victory. He was ranked number one on The Ring's list of 100 Greatest Punchers of All Time.
Roy Jones, Jr. was born in January 16, 1969. He is the only boxer in history to begin his career as a junior middleweight and later win a heavyweight title. He accomplished the unbelievable feat of holding the WBC, WBA, IBF, IBO, NABF, WBF and IBA light heavyweight championships simultaneously. In 1997, Jones lost his first professional match in a disqualification against Montell Griffin. He is also known for putting out an album in 2001 titled Round One: The Album and the debut single, “Y’all Must've Forgot.”