The Ten Greatest Heavyweight Champions – and their single best performances

Today marks the 30th anniversary of one special heavyweight’s ascension to the world title: Mike Tyson. Tyson, as fans know, decimated Trevor Berbick to win the WBC crown three full decades ago, and it wasn’t long before the rest of the belts were Tyson’s property. Some experts say Tyson, at just 20, turned in his finest performance on November 22nd, 1986.

Here is a list of the ten finest performances from the ten greatest-ever world heavyweight champions:

1: Muhammad Ali.

Best-ever performance: TKO 3 Cleveland Williams, Houston, Texas – November, 1966

2: Jack Johnson.

Best-ever performance: TKO 15 James J. Jeffries, Reno, Nevada – July, 1910

3: Joe Louis.

Best-ever performance: KO 1 Max Schmeling, New York, New York – June, 1938

4: Rocky Marciano.

Best-ever performance: KO 13 Jersey Joe Walcott, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania – September, 1952

5: George Foreman.

Best-ever performance: KO 2 Joe Frazier, Kingston, Jamaica – January, 1973

6: Larry Holmes.

Best-ever performance: WS 15 Ken Norton, Las Vegas, Nevada – June, 1978

7: Lennox Lewis.

Best-ever performance: KO 4 Hasim Rahman, Las Vegas, Nevada – November, 2001

8: Jack Dempsey.

Best-ever performance: WRTD 3 Jess Willard, Toledo, Ohio – July, 1919

9: Joe Frazier.

Best-ever performance: WU 15 Muhammad Ali, New York, New York – March, 1971

10: Evander Holyfield.

Best-ever performance: TKO 11 Mike Tyson, Las Vegas, Nevada – November, 1996