A Quarter Century of Greatness: Boxing’s 25 Best Over The Last 25 Years (Part 2)

by Paul Magno

For Part 1 of this feature, #18-#25, click here: https://thebluecorner.wordpress.com/2009/04/16/a-quarter-century-of-greatness-boxings-25-best-over-the-last-25-years-part-1/

17) Winky Wright: 51-5-1 (25 KO), 1990-Present winky

Key Wins: Andrew Council, Bronco McKart (3), Keith Mullings, Shane Mosley (2), Felix Trinidad, Ike Quartey, Jermain Taylor (Draw)

Key Losses: Julio Cesar Vazquez, Harry Simon, Fernando Vargas, Bernard Hopkins, Paul Williams

Wright may not always have been the most exciting fighter, but few could argue with his success or the skill-set demonstrated by his two wins over Mosley and his complete domination of Trinidad. Avoided by many of the top talents, Wright and his defense-minded southpaw trick book were forced into fighting whoever he could, whenever a fight could be made- even to the point of spending 5 prime years on the European circuit.

16) Jose Luis Castillo: 57-9-1 (49 KO), 1990-Present

Key Wins: Jorge Paez, Stevie Johnston (1-0-1), Cesar Bazan, Juan Lazcano, Joel Casamayor, Julio Diaz, Diego Corrales (1-1), Herman Ngoudjo

Key Losses: Floyd Mayweather (2), Diego Corrales, Ricky Hatton

Possibly the most underrated boxer on this list, Castillo had the misfortune of emerging after training partner Julio Cesar Chavez and at the same time as guys like Marco Antonio Barrera and Erik Morales. Castillo didn’t capture too many headlines;  He just set about becoming one of the all-time greats at Lightweight through a steady pace of quality wins and exciting performances.

15) Felix Trinidad: 42-3 (35 KO), 1990-2008

Key Wins: Maurice Blocker, Hector Camacho, Yori Boy Campas, Oba Carr, Freddie Pendleton, Pernell Whitaker, Oscar De la Hoya, David Reid, Fernando Vargas, William Joppy, Ricardo Mayorga

Key Losses: Bernard Hopkins, Winky Wright, Roy Jones Jr.

With two precision rockets for fists, “Tito” Trinidad established himself as one of the finest offensive fighters of his era. Like most punchers, he could be outboxed, but the fighters who could do so were few and far between from 147 lbs to 160. Trinidad will go down as one of this generation’s most brutal KO artists and one of its most talented offensive fighters.

14) Mike Tyson: 50-6 (44 Ko), 1985-2005 mike-tyson

Key Wins: Trevor Berbick, James Smith, Tony Tucker, Larry Holmes, Michael Spinks, Frank Bruno (2), Donovan Ruddock (2), Bruce Seldon, Frans Botha

Key Losses: Buster Douglas, Evander Holyfield (2), Lennox Lewis, Danny Williams, Kevin McBride

“Iron” Mike spent a total of about 6 prime years of his career in deep personal and managerial problems- including a nearly four year prison sentence. However, for about a 3 year period  from 1986 to 1989, no fighter in any division at any time was as dominant as Tyson. Using his phenomenal physical gifts, combined with Cus D’amato’s peek-a-boo defense and a generous amount of pure rage, Tyson became the youngest Heavyweight champion in history and maybe the most feared as well.

13) Erik Morales: 48-6 (34 KO), 1993-2007

Key Wins: Daniel Zaragoza, Junior Jones, Wayne McCullough, Marco Antonio Barrera (1-2), Kevin Kelley, Guty Espadas Jr. (2), Paulie Ayala, Jesus Chavez, Manny Pacquiao (1-2)

Key Losses: Marco Antonio Barrera (2), Zahir Raheem, Manny Pacquiao (2), David Diaz

The pride of Tijuana, “El Terrible,” came from humble beginnings to earn himself a position among the all-time greats from 122 to 130 lbs. Morales fought like a brawler with the sensibilities of a boxer, mixing solid fundamentals with the heart of a warrior. This mix made him one of the all-around best of this era and a earned him a rightful place among the other Mexican Boxing legends.

12) Shane Mosley: 46-5 (39 KO), 1993- Present

Key Wins: Philip Holiday, John John Molina, Jesse James Leija, Oscar De la Hoya (2), Fernando Vargas (2), Luis Collazo, Ricardo Mayorga, Antonio Margarito

Key Losses: Vernon Forrest (2), Winky Wright (2), Miguel Cotto

Just when everybody thought he was on the decline following his loss to Miguel Cotto, “Sugar” Shane shocked the world by knocking out Ricardo Mayorga and then, more surprisingly, totally dominating and brutalizing 147 lb kingpin, Antonio Margarito to once again capture a piece of the Welterweight title. Considering his recent success, its very possible that Mosley could earn himself an even higher placement on this list by the time he retires.

11) Marco Antonio Barrera: 65-7 (43 KO), 1989-Present marco_barrera_240x230_040405

Key Wins: Agapito Sanchez, Kennedy McKinney, Erik Morales (2-1), Naseem Hamed, Johnny Tapia, Paulie Ayala, Rocky Juarez (2)

Key Losses: Junior Jones (2), Erik Morales, Manny Pacquiao (2), Juan Manuel Marquez, Amir Khan

Imagine picture-perfect technique and flawless execution delivered by a fighter with the sensibilities of a street thug- That was Marco Antonio Barrera. “The Baby Faced Assasin” became an all-time great from 122 to 130 lbs. by displaying the technique of a real craftsman with the attitude of a cold-blooded assasin. Winning was his primary drive and he rolled over most everyone who tried to get in his way.

To Be Continued…

Part 3: The Top 10-  Tuesday, April 21st

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3 responses to “A Quarter Century of Greatness: Boxing’s 25 Best Over The Last 25 Years (Part 2)

  1. Good list…They are great for debate!! I give you credit for a well thought out list…

    I would only disagree with you on Cotto and Castillo being ahead of Juan Manuel Marquez. Marquez is a 3 division champion, and currently number 2 P4P…More then either Castillo and Cotto have ever done. Now Cotto may get there eventually, as he has the talent.

    I think Mosley, De La Hoya, Morales, and Barrera are pretty much interchangable. I would pick Mosley ahead of those 3, but like I said they all are in the same boat. Very comparable

    Great Stuff again. Looking forward to your top 10.

  2. hello mike tyson america famous people ,look at your style act boxing ring get one weak position at footy ,how if i give an practise just for 24 position move feet skill from left to right and down to upper and then to prove boxer hand just like hold cloud finish way take deep breath ,practise call chinese taichi qigong .maybe after doing body can health and be taller than usually . if got any weapon make 33 skill hand holding punch . how many burger you eat time get breakfast. if read not understand address your residence to my email

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