The Super Middleweight division is one of the newest in boxing, only the Strawweight is more recent. Despite this there has been a wealth of talent to lace up the gloves at 168 pounds, especially from Europe.
So here is my top five Greatest Super Middleweights of all time.
5. James “Lights out” Toney. 76-9-3-(46) – present.
Toney for a time was considered by most to be the P4P king until a certain Roy Jones Jr beat him by a landslide. It was his work previous to that defeat that made him a great at this weight.
After beating Doug Dewitt, Toney put on a master class to beat Iran Barkley for the IBF title. I like to Remember “Lights out” for his victory over Prince Charles Williams, this was James Toney at his very best.
4. Roy Jones Jr. 59-8-(42) – present.
For me not only one of the best at this weight but one of the best there has ever been. In his prime Jones was magical but because of his brilliant but short stay I cannot rank him any higher.
For someone who did not hang around long at 168 lbs, Jones most certainly acheived a lot. He beat P4P king James Toney in the division’s “Super fight” which propelled hum to superstar status.
Although his six defences of the title were not against big names he dominated them all and barely lost a round.
3. “Simply The Best” Chris Eubank. 45-5-2(23)
Chris Eubank was indeed simply the best of the early champions at Super Middleweight. After beating Michael Watson in a near fatal fight for the vacant WBO title, Eubank made fourteen defences of the belt. He fought the likes of Sugar boy Malinga and Tony Thornton amongst others.
His on going feud with fellow Brit Nigel Benn was legendary. Their dislike of one another produced the most anticipated fight the division had ever seen.
Eubank’s persona made it difficult for him to be liked but his talent was to be admired.
2. “The Dark Destroyer” Nigel Benn. 42-5-1(35)
After starting his career at Middleweight and winning the WBO title there, Benn moved up to 168 lbs where he became one of the best and most exciting fighters ever at the weight.
He beat Mauri Galvano to win the WBC title where after some defences he fought great rival Chris Eubank to a draw in a unification fight in 1993. In 1995 Benn came up against the Don King hyped Gerald McClellan. An amazing win for Benn was cut short by the harrowing scenes after their war which left the American fighting for his life.
After three straight losses Benn retired but no one will forget the excitement he bought to the sport.
1. Joe Calzaghe. 46-0-(32)
Calzaghe is as obvious choice for this number one spot as is Evander Holyfield at Cruiserweight.
After beating Chris Eubank for the WBO title, a ten year reign as champion began. With wins over Charles Brewer and Ritchie Woodhall and others, Calzaghe came up against the undefeated American danger man Jeff “left hook” Lacey in 2006. Lacey was favoured by many to end Calzaghe’s run but the magical Welshman dealt with the American threat with ease.
Calzaghe had incredible hand speed and his ability to overpower his opponents made him impossible to beat.
Joe Calzaghe retired undefeated with 46 wins and for me clearly is The Greatest Super Middleweight of all time.
To read more from “The Greatest Series” by Tony Nash, visit the links below:
The “Greatest Series” Presents The Cruiserweight division
The “Greatest Series” Presents The Heavyweight division
The ‘Greatest Series’ Presents The Light Heavyweight division