George Foreman : Began his career as one of the most menacing fighters in the history of the sport. Destroyed Joe Frazier for the heavyweight title, destroyed Ken Norton and seemed unbeatable when Muhammad Ali rope-a-dope’d him into defeat. Never fully recovered from that fight mentally until a 10 year absence from the sport and religious revival. Came back as a barnstormer, worked his way up the ranks and finally recaptured the title by knocking Michael Moorer out in 1994, becoming the oldest champion in the history of the sport.
It’s funny that you have Chavez’s miracle comeback as one of the worst moments – I have it as one of the best. Steele made the right call. It sucks for Taylor – he turned in a masterful performance, but you have to look at it like a referee. He doesn’t know how much time is left. He sees Taylor in bad, bad shape and taking a vicious pounding for three rounds. Chavez was being outlanded, but he did a LOT of damage during that fight. Taylor’s ribs were broken, his orbital was fractured, he had swallowed a PINT of his own blood and that’s all that was coming out the other end: Flip Pomanski (the Nevada State Doctor who examined him) said that he was urinating pure blood. Does that sound like someone who deserves to take more punishment? If the fight had been ten years earlier and it had been a 15 rounder, nobody would have questioned the stoppage.
The ring fell silent. “I think we just saw a gay murder,” someone murmured to Pete Hamill, covering the fight for the New York Post . As Paret was stretchered away, Griffith faced the television cameras. “I'm very proud to be the welterweight champion again,” he declared, “and I hope Paret is feeling very good.” But when he arrived at the hospital to visit his vanquished opponent, Griffith was rebuffed by Paret's family and ran off, distressed, through the streets. Passers-by, who had heard reports of the standoff at the weigh-in, spat and hurled insults at him. Ten days later, Paret was dead, having never regained consciousness.