Considering that the official boxing world championships started in 19th century, the list of undefeated boxers is surprisingly short. Recently-retired Floyd Mayweather Jr. is only the fourteenth world champion to withdraw without a single defeat. It’s a rare feat that deserves a closer attention and scrutiny.
Undefeated Boxers: Rocky Marciano
Rocky was one of the greatest. He was the inspiration for the name, image, and fighting style of Rocky Balboa from Sylvester Stallone’s classic Rocky movie series. Boxing historians often neglect to put Rocky in with the big ones like Dempsey or Louis, but it’s not really fair, since he did beat everyone who crossed his path. It’s not Rocky’s fault that in his era there were not so many notable fighters. Marciano was a swarmer, slugger, and brawler. What he lacked in finesse, he made up for in brute force. His KO percentage is 87.75%, one of the highest in heavyweight history. Out of 49 fights, he scored 43 KOs, retiring undefeated on April 27, 1956.
Undefeated Boxers: Ricardo Lopez
Better known as Ricardo “El Finito” Lopez Nava, this Mexican fighter left a lasting legacy, and was included in the International Boxing Hall of Fame as well as in the World Boxing Hall of Fame. He was the third champion in history to retire undefeated, and the first one to do so as both an amateur and a professional. He shares his fame with Joe Louis and Floyd Mayweather Jr., holding the record for consecutive title bouts without a loss -- 26 fights. Ricardo retired with 51 fights under his belt.
Undefeated Boxers: Joe Calzaghe
Joseph William “Joe” Calzaghe was a Welsh fighter. He held WBA, WBC, IBF, and WBO super-middleweight titles as well as The Ring light-heavyweight title. He was the longest-reigning super-middleweight champ in history, holding the title for over ten years with 21 defenses. Joe retired with the longest continual time as world champion of any active fighter. Calzaghe was dangerous, a southpaw, and a boxer combining traditional EU fighters’ technique with an American style of aggression. He retired with 46 fights and 0 losses.
Undefeated Boxers: Edwin Valero
This Venezuelan boxer deserves to be on the list for remaining as the only champion in the 30-year history of WBC to have won every fight in his career by KO. There were a total of 27 fights, and all of them were knockouts. Edwin was also a powerful hitter and a southpaw. Valero held WBA super featherweight and WBC lightweight titles.
Undefeated Boxers: Jimmy Barry
Although this diminutive fighter comes from the 19th century, and while his track record is not entirely reliable, Jimmy still deserves to be listed as an undefeated boxer. An International Boxing Hall of Famer, Barry reportedly fought in 70 matches. Out of 59 victories, 39 were KO wins, with 9 draws, and 2 no contests. The most famous was his match against Walter Croot who fell and cracked his skull on the unpadded floor, which lead to boxing reform and a padded canvas as the new ring surface.
Undefeated Boxers: Floyd Mayweather Jr.
Compared to other undefeated boxers from the history of this noble sport, the accomplishments of Floyd Mayweather Jr. seem no less impressive. He has a record of 26–0 in world title fights, with 10 knockouts. In lineal title fights, his score is 23-0, with 9 knockouts. He is an impressive 24-0 against former or current world titlists, with 7 of them knocked out. His record is 12-0 with 3 KOs against former or current lineal titlists, and even 2-0 with one knockout against boxers in the International Boxing Hall of Fame.
Mayweather’s final record stands at 49-0 with 26 knockouts and 23 decisions, with no losses. He is considered the greatest boxer of his era, five-division world champion with a total of 12 world titles and lineal championships. Floyd is rated as the greatest pound for pound welterweight of all time. We still remember his fights versus Pacquiao, Ortiz, Cotto, Alvarez, Maidana, and others.
Displaying amazing speed, tremendous talent, and skill, Mayweather Jr. defeated Andre Berto in his last match. Then and there, on September 12, 2015 at the MGM Grand Garden Arena, Floyd Mayweather Jr. declared his retirement, becoming a legend.
« Previous Does Race in Boxing Still Matter? Next Boxing: Andre Ward Looks Sharp in Dominating Sullivan Barrera »