Would they be Champion in the Golden era Part 5: Lennox Lewis

Published on 3 February 2023 at 12:08

Lennox Claudius Lewis CM CBE (born 2 September 1965) is a boxing commentator and former professional boxer who competed from 1989 to 2003.  the three-time former heavyweight champion of the world and last Undisputed heavyweight champion of the world stood 6’5 and was a chiseled 245 lb. But they tall upright fighting stance and bullying tactics, he exercised his 84-in reach over many foes and left them on the canvas. But could he do the same to the greatest heavyweights of the greatest era of heavyweight boxing, the Golden era? Let's find out.


Vs. Joe Frazier: Joe Frazier depended on Bobby and waving in order to dodge punches. In particular he would nearly bend over at the waist. It was an early prototype providers such as Mike Tyson and James Toney. He threw a lot of punches in order to get inside due to being only 5’11 in the Land of the Giants.  In order to keep him at bay, Lennox Lewis would have to use long range weapons. In particular he would have to depend on the jab in the straight right hand. The problem here is that Lennox Lewis use the job as a pawing tool early in his career. It was primarily used to measure distance. His job didn’t become a lethal weapon until he came under the tutelage of the late great trainer Emmanuel Stewart. Hear the job was used to set up more powerful punches such as the straight right and the uppercut. The latter of those punches was Joe Frazier’s undoing in both fights against George Foreman. Lennox Lewis had an Impeccable sense of timing and we catch Joe leaning down with an uppercut. This would come after rounds of Lennox using a near 40 lb weight advantage to lean on Joe and tire him out in clinches and snipe away with the jab and straight right hand. One shot would not end Joe Frazier. It would be the accumulation of punishment throughout the bout. It would be a frustrating about to watch as Lewis would negate Joe Frazier’s offense by meeting him with long range weapons on the outside and clinching whenever Frasier got too close. The strategy and the Joe Frazier in Ali Frazier 3 and it would do the same here.

Lennox Lewis wins via Round 10 technical knockout.


Vs. George Foreman: This would be a two-part series. In fight number one, Lennox Lewis would easily dodge George Foreman’s wild offerings. Foreman, at this point, was not regarded for being a technically sound boxer but a one hit kill machine. He didn’t need a specific punch in order to hurt an opponent. Any punch will do. Lennox Lewis is taller and faster with a better reach. He would be smart at first, countering George Foreman with straight punches and darting out of the way of power shots. In the mid rounds of the fight, Lennox Lewis would get cocky and drop his hands as he did in Lewis versus Rahman 1. That one opportunity is all it takes for Foreman to end the fight.

George Foreman wins via Round 6 KO

But Lennox Lewis always get a rematch. Though he didn’t win every fight, Lennox Lewis did defeat every man he ever faced. On losses to Oliver McCall, the man famous for dropping Mike Tyson in his prime in sparring, and the aforementioned Hashim Rahman, Lewis found victory in return bouts. The second fight between these two would see would see Lewis using the same game plan of staying on the outside. Wary of being starts again, Lewis would attack sparingly. While he would not be able to exercise a strength advantage over George Foreman, Lennox Lewis would be able to clinch enough to stop George from punching when he got in range. Despite both men’s acumen and pension for knockouts, this would be a dull fight because Lewis would be controlling the range, he would be nullifying George Foreman’s punches by holding and leaning. This fight would resemble an amateur about with an emphasis on scoring points versus the knockout. The strategy of boxing George Foreman via range started with Jimmy Young, who defeated Foreman in  Foreman’s retirement bout until his historic return.

Lennox Lewis wins unspectacular unanimous decision in second fight


Vs. Muhammad Ali: this fight is interesting because if you take Ali at the time he was champion in the 70s, he can also boast that he defeated every man he ever faced without winning every fight. The fact that this would be true for both fighters here would mean there could be a rematch. What for respect to their styles and having given a rematch the previous entry, I will stick to one fight. On one in Lennox Lewis, you have a long, rangy, situationally aggressive fighter with power. With the 70s version of Muhammad Ali, you have a counterpuncher with pinpoint accuracy, timing, and iron chin, and the greatest ring awareness in history. The early rounds would see Louis dominating with aggression but not much damage. Muhammad Ali would be content to block and absorb shots on the ropes. The turning point of the fight what happened in the mid rounds as Ali having studied Lewis up until this point, would connect with a counter on Lewis entry dropping him. It worked as a strategy against Chuck Wepner, George Foreman, and even in the 60’s against Cleveland Williams and Zora Folley. Although Lenox Lewis's talents may be above those men mentioned, his chin is not.  Once seeing that Lennox Lewis is hurt, Muhammad Ali will turn up the aggression and get a standing referee stoppage. Both men have been knocked down in their careers. But Lennox Lewis has never won a fight when he was on the on the canvas. Ali got up from Henry Cooper, Chuck Wepner, and although he didn’t win that fight Joe Frazier. Nobody made Ali stay down for 10 no matter how much punishment they dished out.

Ali wins by knockout Round 8


Vs: Leon Spinks: Spinks is pressure and aggression. Lennox Lewis chews up pressure and aggression with sharp straight punches. Then he will clinch and uppercut. Ask Michael Grant. Ask Shannon Briggs. Both of those names were more powerful than Spinks and their nights ended early. Being four inches shorter, slower, 30 lbs lighter and less technical means Spinks will spend the fight throwing punches just to close.the distance and get wrecked.  

Lennox Lewis wins via third round knockout 

Vs. Kenny Norton: this would be a battle of two tacticians possessing absolutely Olympian physiques. Black Hercules vs the Lion. Kenny Norton did not have a good chin. Lennox Lewis did not have a good chin. Both were accurate punchers with very  respectable power. The difference in this fight would be aggression. Kenny Norton was more laid back and depended on a cross arm block to defend punches and would punch back when an opponent landed on his guard. Lennox Lewis depended on movement and blocking his head to defend against punches and had no limitations on when he would punch. Though his infighting game was considered non-existent, Lennox Lewis would be able to sneak in some upper cuts on one of his clinches. See Lennox Lewis versus Michael Grant. This fight is a chess match for the first two rounds with both fighters wary of getting touched not because of the power in the punches, but because so few punches are landing that one may be enough to steal a round. Sensing the urgency, Lennox Lewis will turn up the aggression and began to land more frequently and with more power. It cannot be understated how much George Foreman terrified Kenny Norton to where he developed a fear of power punches. Earnie Shavers and Gerry Cooney didn’t help. Under the pressure and taking damage, Kenny Norton would be overwhelmed and finished.

Lennox Lewis wins via Round 3 stoppage.


Vs Larry Holmes. This is human chess. Both men are lengthy, long range punches. They both depend on clinching to negate damage. The jab and straight right hand are the best weapons for both. The difference here is an intangible. Who can take the bigger punch? The answer is easy- Larry Holmes. The best puncher that Lennox Lewis ever faced was a very diminished Mike Tyson. He had been knocked out twice previously. Larry Holmes of the late seventies was 48-0. He faced the hardest puncher in heavyweight boxing history, Earnie Shavers. Larry Holmes was knocked down. Larry Holmes got up to win. As I said before, Lennox Lewis has never got up to win. Just by being tougher, Larry Holmes gets the late win.

Larry Holmes via last Round knockout in an even fight.


Often a glaring omission from many pundits greatest of all time list, Lennox Lewis is indeed a high caliber Hall of Fame legend. His style, size, and record for the best of his era and could absolutely hold up to the best era of heavyweight boxing. Often times, we have such reverence for a particular name in boxing that we do not dissect their resumes and give credit where credit is due. As an amateur he fought and defeated Riddick Bowe. Lennox Lewis best in Mike Tyson, Evander Holyfield, Vitali Klitschko, Donovan Razor Ruddock, David Tua, Shannon Briggs, Michael Grant, Oliver McCall and Hassim Rahman. This man kicked ass .And he could do it at any time in any era.

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