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Thread: Thomas Hearns Would Be A Star Of Incredible Magnitude Today

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    Thomas Hearns Would Be A Star Of Incredible Magnitude Today




    He was about a half inch shorter than former undisputed light heavyweight champion Michael Spinks and possessed the same 78 inch reach, yet he was a welterweight who never had to kill himself to get down to 147. His left jab was straight, fast, accurate and not only set up his finishing punches, it also kept his opponents on their heels and made it suicide for them to try and take the fight to him. His left hook to the body was debilitating and his right hand only had to land once for him to turn out the lights for fighters who fought between 147/175. In fact, many of Hearns’ foes fell face forward after being hit by his right hand because they were out.
    His name is Thomas "The Hitman" Hearns, and he won legitimate championships/titles from welterweight up to light heavyweight. In a career that spanned over a quarter century, Hearns fought the biggest names and best fighters around who either fought for or won a piece of the welterweight, junior middleweight, middleweight, super-middleweight and light heavyweight titles. Hearns scored 48 knockouts in 61 career victories and lost five times in 67 fights. As a welterweight he was 32-1 with 30 KO's, a 91% knockout ratio.
    Thomas Hearns turns 55 today. He's one of the most iconic fighters to emerge from the city of Detroit, which is known for producing great fighters. He's a certified all-time great and yet he may be underrated. Hearns had very fast hands, put his punches together in combination and threw them with hurtful intentions. He has to be regarded as one of the top five pound-for-pound punchers in boxing history. Hearns was taller, with a longer reach, with faster hands and a bigger punch than practically all the other great welterweight champs. There isn't a worthy knockout compilation on YouTube that doesn't feature some of Hearns’ most sensational knockouts.

    Hearns fought during a time when there was intense competition at 147/160 and stars the likes of himself, Roberto Duran, Sugar Ray Leonard, Marvin Hagler and Wilfred Benitez, to a slightly lesser degree, emerged. Hearns beat up Sugar Ray Leonard more than any other fighter ever did while Ray was in his prime during their first fight, in a close but losing effort. And their rematch eight years later was scored a draw, despite Leonard having gone on record admitting that Hearns deserved the decision. During his junior middleweight title bout versus Benitez, who'd only lost to Leonard at the time, Hearns out-boxed perhaps the slickest fighter in boxing at the time to capture the title. Hearns knocked out Duran with one right hand during the second round of their junior middleweight title bout, and despite Roberto fighting on, he's never been counted out in a fightbefore or after facing Hearns. In his fight for the undisputed middleweight title versus champ Marvin Hagler, Hearns shook Hagler more so than any other opponent ever did before he was stopped by Hagler in the third round.

    Hearns went on to stop Juan Roldan in four rounds for a piece of the middleweight title and lost it to Iran Barkley via a TKO in the third round. He won a piece of the light heavyweight title twice with a stoppage in 10 rounds over Dennis Andries, and then four years later out-boxed the undefeated Virgil Hill to win the WBA version. From 1994 through 2000 Hearns won regional and fringe titles fighting as a cruiserweight. For historical purpose you could say that Hearns did his best work between 1977-91. And during those 14 years Hearns never ducked or backed down from any fighter who was in the running to fight him. He had the heart of a wounded lion and was fearless. He also was involved in some of the most exciting and thrilling fights in boxing history.

    Sadly, he doesn't get his just due by some because he lost the two biggest signature fights of his career, versus Sugar Ray Leonard and Marvin Hagler. What's often overlooked is how Leonard is regarded by most fight experts as the greatest welterweight in history after Sugar Ray Robinson. Leonard was at his peak when he faced the 22 year old Hearns in their first fight, being that he had already defeated Benitez and Duran heading into his showdown with Hearns. Floyd Mayweather and Manny Pacquiao would be significant underdogs to the vintage Sugar Ray Leonard of 1981. And remember, Hearns was leading in the fight and had marked up Leonard's face and distorted his vision badly before running out of gas in the 14th round. Leonard would've been the betting favorite over every other welterweight in history except Robinson the night he fought Hearns. So I can't write Hearns off for losing their first fight. And he did get Leonard back in their rematch and dropped him twice during the fight.

    In regards to Hearns' middleweight title bout versus Hagler, he did fracture his right hand in the first round after rocking Hagler in what may be the most ferocious round in boxing history. At the worst Hagler is among the five greatest middleweights ever. How many middleweights are beating Hagler the night he fought Hearns? On that night Hagler would've stopped Gennady Golovkin and Sergio Martinez one after the other on the same night. Again, is it justified to hold Hearns back because he couldn't beat Hagler and never got a rematch? And he did move up to light heavyweight, something Hagler talked about but never did. Marvin's career wins were over fighters his weight or ones who moved up in weight to challenge him.

    Thomas Hearns was a victim of his birth certificate, being that he was in his prime during an era when the second greatest welterweight and an all-time top five middleweight were also in their prime. Hearns was born at the right time in the sense that he had other greats to measure himself against during his career. And what we found out was his punch, heart and character were the real deal. On the other hand, he came up at the wrong time because Leonard and then Hagler were at the top when he was seen as the next guy on the food chain.

    Imagine how big of a superstar, hands down, Hearns would be today? He was willing to go up and fighter bigger champions without haggling over catch-weights. He'd be willing to fight anybody between 147/175 and fans would always come away feeling they got their money’s worth, unlike today. He'd have a picnic fighting today's welterweights and junior middleweights. Hearns would've devastated Saul Alvarez with hooks to the body and right hands to the chin. Pacquiao could've never gotten close enough to land against Hearns without getting knocked out in the process. If Marquez put him away face first, he'd fly out of the ring as if he were wearing a cape against Hearns. As for Mayweather, well, Floyd turned a deaf ear when Paul Williams, a poor man’s version of Hearns, was willing to fight him under any conditions Mayweather wanted. Hearns would've pounded Mayweather's arms and shoulders and hurt him bad before going in to finish him. Assuming Mayweather agreed to the fight without forcing Hearns to weigh in at 143 or less.

    There's not one active fighter around today who has a resume that is equal to that of Thomas Hearns. Ask yourself whether anyone genuinely believes that, were Hearns around today, Floyd Mayweather would be on boxings’ biggest stage by himself?

    Frank Lotierzo can be contacted at GlovedFist@Gmail.com

  2. #2
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    Re: Thomas Hearns Would Be A Star Of Incredible Magnitude Today

    I like this piece, and I liked Tommy Hearns. Losses like the ones vs Leonard & Hagler only adds to his resume.

    A one-in-a-billion-kinda-fighter.

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    Re: Thomas Hearns Would Be A Star Of Incredible Magnitude Today

    Wow, Tommy's 55 already! Damn..everyone's getting really old.

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    Re: Thomas Hearns Would Be A Star Of Incredible Magnitude Today

    I don't believe Hagler would have dominated GGG or even Sergio so convincingly.
    Hagler was solid, dependable, and professional...but sometimes he couldn't get untracked against boxers like Duran Briscoe and Leonard...but he used his boxing ability against bangers.
    GGG is a boxer-banger so I'm not so sure of this assessment.

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    Re: Thomas Hearns Would Be A Star Of Incredible Magnitude Today

    Well said. Hearns would be the best fighter in the world if he were fighting today. There isn't a single fighter between 147 and 175 that I would pick to beat him (a prime Hopkins maybe, but not today's version).

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    Re: Thomas Hearns Would Be A Star Of Incredible Magnitude Today

    nobody around today would beat thomas nobody ......

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    Re: Thomas Hearns Would Be A Star Of Incredible Magnitude Today

    "Tommy Hearns at 160 pounds can knock out a heavyweight. There's never been a man his weight that punched as hard as Tommy Hearns." -- Mike Tyson

    (In this clip if you want to hear it: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5myL5x-qmd8)

    I think everyone on this site knows that Hearns is my favorite.

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    Re: Thomas Hearns Would Be A Star Of Incredible Magnitude Today

    That is HIGHLY exaggerated Iron boxer TALK, Hop! It is nothing to it. At 158lbs, Bob FitzSimmons, Tommy Burns at 168lbs, Jacks Dempsey at 182lbs, Rocky Marciano at 188lbs, James "Hurricane" Carter at 153lbs, Clint Jackson at 147lbs and even "Little Man" Harold Petty at 112lbs knocked "out a heavyweight."

    Iron Mike Tyson was being hyperbolic. Anybody of any size, who can shoot a punch with 750lbs to 1500lbs of pressure, "can knock out a heavyweight." All the above done it tons of times. I've even kayoed heavies in sparring sessions.

    Size doesn't matter, but to fear mongers and cowards. Knowing how to apply the sport of pugilism is what kayos a Jack or Joker, not size. Holla!

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    Re: Thomas Hearns Would Be A Star Of Incredible Magnitude Today

    Radam is correct, everyone has an off button if they are hit right and with enough force, of course you have to have the power to do this.

    In PT school we learned when the head turns at a certain speed and force from say a hook to the chin, as the head rotates with that force due to the pressure in the cervical spine the central nervous system shuts you down and puts you to sleep for protection.

    this is why when you see a guy take a crushing hook on the chin and the head turns they go out....with proper force of course..


    and boy did tommy hearns have that proper force and punching power. that right hand he landed on duran should have put him to sleep for a month...

    hearns would without a doubt be a monster in todays boxing world......he was back in the day fighting against boxings all time best..

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    Re: Thomas Hearns Would Be A Star Of Incredible Magnitude Today

    Late at night in P-Islands, and I cannot sleep. I cannot even creep. Hehehehe! The wifey and moms got a security guard right out size my room. Danggit!

    Anyway! Enough about the minute problems of Radam G.

    Straight to the point about this copy.

    Nostalgia is a dangerous thing that often causes inattention blindness to many excellent pugilists of yesteryears. Super-sharp puligistic scribe F-Lo was as excellent as they came in the amateurs. But I'm not feeling him an iota about Hitman Hearns -- the amateur or professional kick-arse.

    The Hitman had problems with shorter lateral-movement and buzzsaw fighters that he could not psyche out -- with that Sonny "Night Train" Liston's staredown -- all the way back to the amateurs.

    To name three amateurs -- Mike Ayala, Aaron Pryor and Howard Davis. They beat him like a drum. Make him look like a BUM!

    In the pros, Hitman Tommy had similar problems with the same type of fighters. The 5-foot-7 and a-half-of-inch Marvelous Marvin Hagler bombed him out. The 5-foot-9 and a-half-of-inch Sugar Ray Leonard kayoed him in Bout I. Even the 5-foot-8 James Kinchen whupped up on the Hitman. But Tommy was given a majority-decision gift. And he did beat a-tick-below 5-foot-9 Wilfred Benitez in a majority decision.

    But that decision against James "The Heat" Kinchen stunk so badly that the powers that be still have not release their copyrights from the film/video so that I can lodge the bout on Daily Motion or Youtube. Besides even NBC's peacock have not release it's footage.

    Boxing is full of optical illusions. No way that the Hitman would've or could've just walkover the nowadays crops of welterweights to light heavyweights.

    Let's call a spade a spade. And not hide in the shade. BTW, FYI, just as the late, great super-boxing guru Manny Steward kept the K-bros/docs from fighting James "Lights Out" Toney, he kept Tommy away from fighting the likes of Aaron Pryor as a pro.

    A lot of magic is all up in da grill of da game. And people don't know how the optical illusions of the magic are done. And until they know how the illusion is done. In the words of Uncle Rogers May: "Dey don't know syet 'bout boksin!'"

    As time goes by, nostalgia lives like a lie in the fog of war. And if you don't know that, it will go far. And turn everybodee and dey momma of yesteryears into a collected flawless superstar. Holla!
    Last edited by Radam G; 10-18-2013 at 06:17 PM.

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