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Introduction to 1970s Heavyweights

The best way we can enjoy sports these days is to remember sports for the way it once was. With this in mind, I grew up in the 1970s and for the years from 1970-1979, professional boxing may have experienced its best era ever. Boxing was thriving and extremely popular, often showcased on ABC’s Wide World of Sports or CBS and its equivalent show, "CBS Sports Spectacular." Focus ...

Oscar Bonavena - 1970s Heavyweights

With a record of 58-9-1 on February 2, 1976, Bonavena was just 33 when he had a dispute at the Mustang Ranch in Nevada that ended up with the security guard there shooting Bonavena dead. While the Argentine-born Bonavena had an outstanding record, he lost to some of the best fighters in the decade (Ron Lyle, Ali, Joe Frazier, Jimmy Ellis, Floyd Patterson) but some of those figh ...

Joe Bugner - 1970s Heavyweights

The interesting fact about Bugner is that he not only fought Joe Frazier in 1973 and lost a decision, he also fought Joe’s son Marvis. Bugner lost that fight as well, also a decision. From the start of his career in 1967 until he retired many years later in 1999 at an age of 49, Bugner would lose just 13 bouts in 83 fights. Along the way were some big names of the heavyweight d ...

George Chuvalo - 1970s Heavyweights

Like Bugner, George Chuvalo fought the best of the best. This Canadian fighter however began his career seven years earlier than did Bugner. Unlike Bugner, Chuvalo retired with seven straight victories, and with his retirement came the Canadian heavyweight championship, as he defended it with a TKO victory over George Jerome after defeating Bob Felstein in 1977 for the vacant t ...

Jimmy Ellis - 1970s Heavyweights

One of a number of the fighters in this list that has passed away is Ellis a former WBA champion winning the title in 1968 by beating the late Jerry Quarry, also in this list. Like many of the boxers in the heavyweight division of the 1970s, Ellis was a winner with 40 victories and just 12 defeats while knocking out 24 opponents. During this era, no one ducked anyone. Ellis los ...

Alfredo Evangelista - 1970s Heavyweights

Alfredo Evangelista was not a household name during his prime but for boxing enthusiasts, they remember the fighter from Uruguay. His opponents also would remember him well because they may have underestimated the talent of Alfredo Evangelista. He lost a unanimous decision to Ali and later was KO’d by future champion Larry Holmes. Leon Spinks owned a knockout victory over Evang ...

George Foreman - 1970s Heavyweights

Most people know George Foreman as a salesman selling his famous “George Foreman Grill.” But the big man got his start in boxing winning a gold medal in the Olympics and then going on to smash and crush his way to pro boxing’s biggest title, the heavyweight championship. Until Muhammad Ali shocked the world and knocked out Foreman on October 29, 1974, in what was billed as “the ...

Bob Foster - 1970s Heavyweights

Perhaps one of the most underrated fighters in the heavyweight division of the 1970s was Bob Foster. Foster during his career had won the WBA and WBC titles but lost them both in a knockout loss to Joe Frazier. Foster would also get knocked out by Muhammad Ali. In the end, Foster finished with a respectable 56-8-1 record. ...

Joe Frazier - 1970s Heavyweights

"Smokin Joe." Say those words and diehard boxing fans know exactly who you were talking about. One of the hardest hitting and grittiest fighters in history, Frazier and Ali staged three of the best fights in their division in the history of the sport. In their third fight won by Ali, the late and former Cassius Clay said he felt like he was going to die in the ring. Frazier wou ...

Ron Lyle - 1970s Heavyweights

With Ron Lyle comes another tough and aggressive fighter who retired with a solid winning record but without ever winning a title. In his only two championship bouts, he lost a chance by becoming the heavyweight champion of the world when he challenged Muhammad Ali on May 16, 1975, only to lose by a TKO in the 11th round. Then a year later he would be knocked out in five by Geo ...