GOAT which stand for greatest of all time is surely an unofficial title that every boxer strives for in his career? For any athlete the best accolade they could receive is one that recognises their individual greatness and where they stand in the history of the sport. I will argue that to be considered the greatest of all time it requires one to have a great legacy. A legacy can be built through; winning titles, being a popular fighter amongst fans (bringing in a lot of money and filling out venues), having an exciting style and finally to be able to have a career filled with wins and if you’re lucky you may leave the game undefeated.
Boxers that often get mentioned in this category to name a few are Muhammad Ali, Joe Louis, Sugar Ray Robinson and Sugar Ray Leonard etc. These fighters created magical moments in the sport that I believe can no longer be reproduced but as the sport of boxing changes so does the criteria of what is required to become a great, this deeply saddens me as I feel that the competitiveness of the sport is no longer there, the desire to put everything on the line and challenge yourself is absent.
Looking at the current stars of boxing I feel that there is nothing to look forward to as the best possible fights are not being made. Slowly but surely boxing is becoming less of a sport but more of an entertainment, meaningless fights that don’t capture the imagination means that there is a lack of interest and has allowed mixed martial arts to take a step ahead of the sport that we once loved.
The legends of the sport that I mentioned earlier all had character and were very unique, they gave us unforgettable and magical performances in the ring, but I feel the difference between the current generation and past generation of fighters is the eagerness to challenge themselves. The current crop of super star boxers are simply playing it too safe, their reluctance to put everything on the line is what stops them from becoming a better fighter and for some of them ducking fights will ruin their legacy.
I feel for the future of boxing to become a lot more promising fighters need to force the match ups that the public desire and making sure the best possible fights are being made, but with the political aspects of boxing especially from the promotional side this is not happening. I feel that the problem is there for everyone to see but all we can do is hope that the mentality of boxing with this generation starts to change and they start taking note of their previous legendary predecessors.
I feel that the idea of the GOAT no longer exists in this day and age of the sport and that if we were to ever discuss candidates it would have to be from the previous generations as the sport of boxing has changed for the worse and is holding back fighters from achieving true greatness.
This was my first post and I understand it may have been quite boring but I just wanted to start with my views on the sport of boxing and what it means to be a great and the current issues with the sport!!!