Rocky Marciano's Competition

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Rocky Marciano's Competition

Duggerman
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.....was it really that bad? He didn't fight the talented competition of someone like Muhammad Ali or Evander Holyfield, but I don't think people really examine how good he competition was.

Rex Layne, Roland LaStarza and Harry Matthews were among the best on the scene when Rocky was climbing the ranks. Carmine Vingo was a serious contender as well, until Rocky literally knocked him into a coma.

Now let's examine Rocky's reign as a top contender and heavyweight champion:

Joe Louis was old but still fundamentally sound. He had previously lost to Ezzard Charles but gave him a tough fight and closed his eye. Joe had also been defeating guys like Lee Savold and many others before meeting Marciano. You may not agree with me, but Rocky had the style to give any version of Joe Louis trouble. Joe said in his book that he hated to be crowded and that Rocky hit him harder than anyone else. (This includes Max Baer, Tony Galento, Max Schmeling, etc).

Jersey Joe Walcott fought the absolute best fight of his career against Rocky before he was suddenly knocked out in the 13th. He had a late prime, is all. He was a lot like Lennox Lewis that way.

Ezzard Charles gave Rocky two tough fights. No way was he an "old man." He was 33 years old, only two years older than Rocky!! The problem was that he was a better light heavyweight than heavyweight. Fighting someone with heavyweight power proved to be too much.

Archie Moore was old but still a great fighter. After losing to Rocky, he regained the light heavyweight title again. Like Ezzard Charles, Archie couldn't cope with the power of a true heavyweight. Archie did well against Rocky early on but once Rocky found his rhythm and started landing those bombs, it was over.

Henry Cockell was not good but man was he durable!! He pressed Rocky, which neutralized Rocky's power a bit. He lasted a long time but took a beating.

A lot of Rocky's rivals would be having heavyweight success right now and may have picked up a title or two. They'd probably be second best to the Klitschko brothers.

What do you guys think? Was Rocky's competition that horrible? I really don't think so. I think prime Tyson's competition was worse than Rocky's.
Was Rocky Marciano's competition that bad?
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Re: Rocky Marciano's Competition

Evan Fields
Still not high level competition though. Think about it...old Joe Louis, two light heavyweights, (Moore and Charles) nine rounds to knock out Don Cockell....not an impressive career. No disrespect to Rocky's legacy but had he fought in the 70s or 90s he would have suffered some losses. He barely went undefeated in his own weak era.
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Re: Rocky Marciano's Competition

Kid Dynamite
Voted no considering how difficult it is to be undefeated. He also fought some hall of famers. --Louis, Charles, Walcott, Moore and the like.
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Re: Rocky Marciano's Competition

Duggerman
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In reply to this post by Duggerman
Duggerman wrote


.....was it really that bad? He didn't fight the talented competition of someone like Muhammad Ali or Evander Holyfield, but I don't think people really examine how good he competition was.

Rex Layne, Roland LaStarza and Harry Matthews were among the best on the scene when Rocky was climbing the ranks. Carmine Vingo was a serious contender as well, until Rocky literally knocked him into a coma.

Now let's examine Rocky's reign as a top contender and heavyweight champion:

Joe Louis was old but still fundamentally sound. He had previously lost to Ezzard Charles but gave him a tough fight and closed his eye. Joe had also been defeating guys like Lee Savold and many others before meeting Marciano. You may not agree with me, but Rocky had the style to give any version of Joe Louis trouble. Joe said in his book that he hated to be crowded and that Rocky hit him harder than anyone else. (This includes Max Baer, Tony Galento, Max Schmeling, etc).

Jersey Joe Walcott fought the absolute best fight of his career against Rocky before he was suddenly knocked out in the 13th. He had a late prime, is all. He was a lot like Lennox Lewis that way.

Ezzard Charles gave Rocky two tough fights. No way was he an "old man." He was 33 years old, only two years older than Rocky!! The problem was that he was a better light heavyweight than heavyweight. Fighting someone with heavyweight power proved to be too much.

Archie Moore was old but still a great fighter. After losing to Rocky, he regained the light heavyweight title again. Like Ezzard Charles, Archie couldn't cope with the power of a true heavyweight. Archie did well against Rocky early on but once Rocky found his rhythm and started landing those bombs, it was over.

Henry Cockell was not good but man was he durable!! He pressed Rocky, which neutralized Rocky's power a bit. He lasted a long time but took a beating.

A lot of Rocky's rivals would be having heavyweight success right now and may have picked up a title or two. They'd probably be second best to the Klitschko brothers.

What do you guys think? Was Rocky's competition that horrible? I really don't think so. I think prime Tyson's competition was worse than Rocky's.
Oh gawd. I can’t believe I made that remark about Rocky’s opposition and the K- Brothers. 🤦🏾‍♂️

But overall Rocky’s opposition was not great. Early in his career, Ted Lowry, Rex Layne and Carmine Vingo were among the few good heavyweights he fought.

But his competition didn’t really pick up until after his win over Joe Louis. That’s when he got the big paydays for fighting Roland LaStarza (rematch) Walcott, Charles, Moore, etc.

As far as heavyweight champions go, I feel that the Klitschko brothers, Marciano and Ruddock Bowe fought the worst competition. (Bowe’s only big fights were with Holyfield and Golota).
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Re: Rocky Marciano's Competition

The Golden Jet
No it wasn’t bad. It wasn’t great but still. He knocked out more than a few hall of famers, and Going undefeated in any era is a rare feat. We gotta give Rocky his credit