Monzon And Hagler: Why Did They Not Move Up - Part II

04.06.06 - By Jim Amato: Bob Foster could not carry the weight well over 175 yet he called out Frazier and Ali. He did it for the glory. Think of all the great fights that would NOT have happened if Tiger, Griffith, Rodriguez, Leonard, Hearns, Duran, Arguello, Olivares, Gomez, Chavez and so many others had decided not to move up.

In my book Monzon and Hagler are the two best middleweights of the last forty years. Who knows though, Foster-Monzon and Spinks-Hagler may have rivaled Pryor-Arguello and Duran-Leonard as thrillers. The thing is if Roberto and Alexis had decided not to move up, we as fans would have never witnessed those classics. What a shame.

Winning multiple titles at different weight classes is not over rated. Henry Armstrong will live in infamy. I do agree with the coming of so many weight divisions it has become somewhat watered down. Leonard, Hearns and DeLaHoya have won their share of "junior" titles. Still, you had to respect a guy like Duran who won titles at 135, 147 ( he skipped 140 ), 154 and 160. Arguello at 126, 130 and 135. Alexis may have been the best jr. lightweight of all time. A solid case may be made for Roberto at 135.

There other great fighters who moved up and took on the challenge only to be met by defeat. Flash Elorde and Sugar Ramos both failed to dethrone the great Carlos Ortiz. Esteban DeJesus twice failed in attempts at the junior welterweight title. Wouldn't it have been great if Duran would have met Arguello at 135? What a match that may have been. Nevertheless, Roberto had bigger fish to fry like Carlos Palomino and Sugar Ray Leonard and Alexis would win a piece of the title after Roberto gave it up to pursue the welterweight title.

Sugar Ray Robinson went after Joey Maxim's light heavyweight crown. Did he get beat by the heat? Well, like Joey said "I didn't have an air conditioner in my corner." Many feel the Ray avoided going after Archie Moore, after he won the title from Maxim. What stopped that fight from happening was two gigantic egos that could not agree on financial arrangements. Too bad, that would have been a great one.

Article posted on 05.06.2006

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