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A Prime George Foreman Against The Current Heavyweight Champions: Klitschko, Ibragimov, Peter, Maskaev and Chagaev

I’ve always wondered how a young George Foreman would have done in this a day and age against the mostly Eastern European fighters. For the sake of this discussion, I’m pitting a prime 24 year-old George Foreman against the current heavyweight champions Wladimir Klitschko, Sultan Ibragimov, Ruslan Chagaev, Samuel Peter and Oleg Maskaev. At 24, Foreman was perhaps at his peak physically, a period in which he destroyed Joe Frazier in two brutal rounds, knocking him down six times in the process.

Though Foreman would be undersized at 217 lbs compared to the average weight of 235+ for the current heavyweight champions, he would no doubt make up for it by his awesome power, which freakish compared to relatively light weight. Of the four heavyweight champions, only Klitschko could come close in matching Foreman for power. However, Klitschko’s chin would be a major liability, particularly if Foreman were to land anything on him. Back in 1973, Foreman was a lot faster than he was in his 2nd career, and every punch he threw had knockout intentions written all over it.

I could see Wladimir using the same technique – the grab and jab – that he used against Samuel Peter in their 2005 bout, in which Wladimir stayed on the outside, running around and clinching often. However, against Foreman, he is much bigger than Peter in terms of height and reach, plus he was a lot better at cutting off the ring on his opponents. Wladimir would likely find it extremely difficult to stay on the outside without getting cut off and taking a few tremendous shots. Foreman liked to use uppercuts and hooks as his main weapons to subdue his foes.

The uppercuts would probably not serve him in a bout with Wladimir, as he tends to stay well on the outside, enough so that Foreman wouldn’t be able to land any of these shots with any signicant power. However, Foreman would be able to connect with hooks while cutting off Wladimir’s escape routes, and eventually stun him and the finish him with a big uppercut. I doubt seriously that Wladimir would make it out of the 2nd round. In 1973, Foreman was relentless in the first half of his fights, throwing a high amount of huge shots and fighting like an animal.

As for Ruslan Chagaev, he would similar to Joe Frazier in that he would try to mix it up with Foreman and get brutally stopped in the first or second round. Chagaev doesn’t mave much size, so he’d be forced to try and get inside to land his quick flurries. Against Nikolay Valuev, a slow 7′ foot giant, Chagaev was successful. However, against a young Foreman, Chagaev would eventually pay when he tries to land some of his sneaky flurries, and would catch a big uppercut, likely sending him down. Chagaev is pretty tough, but he’d be mowed down as soon as he gets up. Prediction: 1st round KO

Samuel Peter, a power puncher himself, he’d make the foolish mistake of going right after Foreman and would immediately be hurt, perhaps in the first sixty seconds of the bout. Peter’s chin hasn’t been the same since running into a big left hook from Wladimir Klitachko in 2005, and he’d find himself getting hit even hard in the first minute of a bout with Foreman. Once Foreman hurt Peter with one of his uppercuts, he’d finish him off with windmill hooks, sending Peter to the canvas in the 1st round. Prediction: 1st round KO

Both Maskaev and Ibragimov would be annihilated by Foreman, even easier than the others. Maskaev would likely be dropped after absorbing the first few lethal shots, and he’d crumple to the canvas. It would be almost identical to his knockout loss to Lance Whitaker, except that it would be much quicker. No way would Maskaev make it out of the first minute of the fight.

Ibragimov, though, would run like he usually does when fighting. It would be like a lion chasing a rabbit, although the Lion would find it very easy to catch up. Foreman’s 6’4 size advantage would enable him to catch up to the smaller Ibragimov and obliterate him with huge shots to the head. Ibragimov wouldn’t make it out of the thirty seconds of the fight without being dropped for the 10 count. Prediction: Foreman by 1st round KO.

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