Holyfield Believes He Would Have Thrived In Any Era Of Boxing
Throughout the years there is a debate on how an athlete would do in a specific generation. From Michael Jordan in today’s NBA to Babe Ruth in the late 90s of baseball. One athlete is debating whether he himself could have done well in any scenario.
Evander Holyfield, 57, spoke to Boxing Scene regarding his durability. Fighting from 1984-2011, Holyfield (44-10-2, 1 NC) was able to control the late-80s and 90s. What if he were to be in his prime today? Holyfield believes that anything is possible.
“I was a boxer, and because I knew how to box real well, I could adapt to different styles. I could have fought in any era. I could be in there with any heavyweight,” Holyfield stated. “I knew how to fight inside and outside. I knew how to slip shots of longer guys. I had decent hand speed. I moved really well and had good footwork. I had a lot of combinations and threw a lot of punches. I hurt people. I was a student of the game. This allowed for me to be in the era that I was.”
Holyfield ended his career by going 2-2 with one no-contest. He started the 1999 campaign 2-5-2, which led to him going back and forth when it came to competing. With 29 wins via knockout, his chances today would be interesting. Always the underdog in big fights, he managed to pull through. That was the case in the first Mike Tyson fight.
Throughout history, each era has brought upon a different caliber of heavyweight fighter. There’s Muhammad Ali, Joe Louis, Rocky Marciano, Jack Dempsey, among others. Today, we can count Deontay Wilder and Anthony Joshua. Holyfield even sparred with Andy Ruiz Jr. at some point.
As he plans on returning to boxing this year for a charity event, Holyfield will test his opinions out. While it won’t be against some of boxing’s best, he hopes to share a glimpse of what he could have done.
“When boxing is all you’ve done your whole life, that’s what makes you successful,” Holyfield went on to say. “There were a lot of things I didn’t have, but I was good at boxing. My mother told me, ‘you have to be thankful for what you can do, and stop worrying about what you can’t do.’”
How do you think Holyfield would have done against today’s generation of fighters?