Most Opponents Beaten for World Heavyweight Title: Difference between revisions

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While in earlier days boxers could have fought each other for the title many times, as time progressed, rematches have slowly become less and less frequent. Throughout the entire boxing history, however, reasons for rematches were usually these:  
While in earlier days boxers could have fought each other for the title many times, as time progressed, rematches have slowly become less and less frequent. Throughout the entire boxing history, however, reasons for rematches were usually these:  


* The first fight ended in an upset. The rematch is secured to answer the question whether the first fight indeed meant that the underdog was a better boxer, or was it just a matter of several things lining up together that day (the publicly recognized favorite underestimating his opponent, simply not having his day, a clash of styles and skills that favored the underdog to scratch the victory the first time etc.) Examples:
* The first fight ended in an upset. The rematch is secured to answer the question whether the first fight indeed meant that the underdog was a better boxer, or was it just a matter of several things lining up together that day (the fighter underestimating his opponent, simply not having his day, a clash of styles and skills that favored the underdog to scratch the victory the first time etc.) Examples:
** [[Hasim Rahman vs. Lennox Lewis (2nd meeting)|Hasim Rahman vs. Lennox Lewis II]]
** [[Hasim Rahman vs. Lennox Lewis (2nd meeting)|Hasim Rahman vs. Lennox Lewis II]]
** [[Antonio Tarver vs. Roy Jones Jr. (3rd meeting)|Antonio Tarver vs. Roy Jones Jr. III]]
** [[Antonio Tarver vs. Roy Jones Jr. (3rd meeting)|Antonio Tarver vs. Roy Jones Jr. III]]

Latest revision as of 12:42, 22 September 2022

Listing of World Heavyweight Champions by number of opponents beaten for the title in the Heavyweight division under the Marquess of Queensberry Rules. The maximum weight for this division is unlimited (200+ lbs, 90.9+ kg, 14 stone 4 lbs+).

While in earlier days boxers could have fought each other for the title many times, as time progressed, rematches have slowly become less and less frequent. Throughout the entire boxing history, however, reasons for rematches were usually these:

  • No one else is there to fight. This was more of an occurence in early days when the number of actual fighters per division was very limited, so the top guys were left fighting each other over and over again. Examples:

Other than that, rematches are usually regarded by the public as unnecessary (see Boxing247.com: Is Fury Vs. Wilder The Most Needless Trilogy In Heavyweight Championship History?).

Rematches could result in the champion earning one more title fight win fighting the same opponent again. Had the result left no questions about the champion being better or the division had other capable challengers, the champion would've moved on with just one more win instead of two.

RELATED LINKS:

All Championship Reigns

The list does not include The Ring and lineal championship fights after 1921.

Pos. Name Reign Began-Ended Recognition Beaten Opponents
1. Wladimir Klitschko 1. October 14, 2000 — March 8, 2003
2. April 22, 2006 — November 28, 2015
1. WBO
2. WBA, IBF, WBO
23
2. Joe Louis June 22, 1937 — March 1, 1949 NYSAC, NBA 22
3. Muhammad Ali 1. February 25, 1964 – March 11, 1969
2. October 30, 1974 — February 15, 1978
3. September 15, 1978 — October 18, 1979
1. WBA, WBC
2. WBA, WBC
3. WBA
21
4. Larry Holmes June 9, 1978 — September 21, 1985 WBC, IBF 20
5. Lennox Lewis 1. December 14, 1992 — September 24, 1994
2. February 7, 1997 — April 22, 2001
3. November 17, 2001 — February 6, 2004
1. WBC
2. WBA, WBC, IBF
3. WBC, IBF
15
5. Vitali Klitschko 1. June 26, 1999 — April 1, 2000
2. April 24, 2004 — November 9, 2005
3. October 11, 2008 — December 15, 2013
1. WBO
2. WBC
3. WBC
15
7. Mike Tyson 1. November 22, 1986 — February 11, 1990
2. March 16, 1996 — November 9, 1996
1. WBA, WBC, IBF
2. WBA, WBC
11
7. Tommy Burns February 23, 1906 — December 26, 1908 lineal 11
9. Joe Frazier March 4, 1968 — January 22, 1973 NYSAC, WBA, WBC 10
10. Evander Holyfield 1. October 25, 1990 — November 13, 1992
2. November 6, 1993 — April 22, 1994
3. November 9, 1996 — November 13, 1999
4. August 12, 2000 — March 3, 2001
1. WBA, WBC, IBF
2. WBA, IBF
3. WBA, IBF
4. WBA
9
10. Anthony Joshua 1. April 9, 2016 — June 1, 2019
2. December 7, 2019 — September 25, 2021
WBA, IBF, WBO 9
12. Ezzard Charles September 27, 1950 — July 18, 1951 NBA, NYSAC 8
12. Deontay Wilder January 17, 2015 — February 22, 2020 WBC 8
14. Floyd Patterson 1. November 30, 1956 — June 26, 1959
2. June 20, 1960 — September 25, 1962
NYSAC, NBA 7
15. Jack Johnson December 26, 1908 — April 5, 1915 lineal 6
15. Jack Dempsey July 4, 1919 — September 23, 1926 lineal-to-NBA and NYSAC 6
15. James J. Jeffries June 9, 1899 — May 13, 1905 lineal 6

All Championship Reigns of Undisputed Champions/Lineal Champions/The Ring Champions

The list does not include The Ring and lineal championship fights after 1921, although it only includes heavyweight champions that captured undisputed championship (1922–present), lineal championship (1885–1921) or The Ring championship (1922–1989, 2002–).

Pos. Name Reign Began-Ended Recognition Beaten Opponents
1. Wladimir Klitschko 1. October 14, 2000 — March 8, 2003
2. April 22, 2006 — November 28, 2015
1. WBO
2. WBA, IBF, WBO
23
2. Joe Louis June 22, 1937 — March 1, 1949 NYSAC, NBA 22
3. Muhammad Ali 1. February 25, 1964 – March 11, 1969
2. October 30, 1974 — February 15, 1978
3. September 15, 1978 — October 18, 1979
1. WBA, WBC
2. WBA, WBC
3. WBA
21
4. Larry Holmes June 9, 1978 — September 21, 1985 WBC, IBF 20
5. Lennox Lewis 1. December 14, 1992 — September 24, 1994
2. February 7, 1997 — April 22, 2001
3. November 17, 2001 — February 6, 2004
1. WBC
2. WBA, WBC, IBF
3. WBC, IBF
15
5. Vitali Klitschko 1. June 26, 1999 — April 1, 2000
2. April 24, 2004 — November 9, 2005
3. October 11, 2008 — December 15, 2013
1. WBO
2. WBC
3. WBC
15
7. Mike Tyson 1. November 22, 1986 — February 11, 1990
2. March 16, 1996 — November 9, 1996
1. WBA, WBC, WBA
2. WBA, WBC
11
7. Tommy Burns February 23, 1906 — December 26, 1908 lineal 11
9. Joe Frazier March 4, 1968 — January 22, 1973 NYSAC, WBA, WBC 10
10. Evander Holyfield 1. October 25, 1990 — November 13, 1992
2. November 6, 1993 — April 22, 1994
3. November 9, 1996 — November 13, 1999
4. August 12, 2000 — March 3, 2001
1. WBA, WBC, IBF
2. WBA, IBF
3. WBA, IBF
4. WBA
9
11. Ezzard Charles September 27, 1950 — July 18, 1951 NBA, NYSAC 8
12. Floyd Patterson 1. November 30, 1956 — June 26, 1959
2. June 20, 1960 — September 25, 1962
NYSAC, NBA 7
12. Jack Johnson December 26, 1908 — April 5, 1915 lineal 7
14. James J. Jeffries June 9, 1899 — May 13, 1905 lineal 6
14. Jack Dempsey July 4, 1919 — September 23, 1926 lineal-to-NBA and NYSAC 6

Championship Reigns of Undisputed/Lineal/The Ring Champions with Undisputed/Lineal/The Ring/Unified Championships, Victories Over Champions

The list does not include The Ring and lineal championship fights after 1921, although it only includes heavyweight champions that captured undisputed championship (1922–present), lineal championship (1885–1921) or The Ring championship (1922–1989, 2002–).

The list only includes title reigns during which the champion:

  • has won undisputed championship (1922–present), The Ring championship (1922–1989, 2002–), lineal championship (1885–1921)
  • unified two of the four major championship belts (WBA, WBC, IBF, WBO)
  • defeated a fighter that either had to drop his own world title prior to the fight due to organization's championship policy or would become world heavyweight champion while the winner's reign was still active
Pos. Name Reign Began-Ended Recognition Lineal Claim Beaten Champions Beaten Opponents
1. Wladimir Klitschko 1. October 14, 2000 — March 8, 2003
2. April 22, 2006 — November 28, 2015
1. WBO
2. unified

2. The Ring
1. Chris Byrd (IBF)

23
2. Joe Louis June 22, 1937 — March 1, 1949 undisputed The Ring 22
3. Muhammad Ali 1. February 25, 1964 – March 11, 1969
2. October 30, 1974 — February 15, 1978
3. September 15, 1978 — October 18, 1979
1. undisputed
2. undisputed
3. WBA
The Ring 21
4. Larry Holmes June 9, 1978 — September 21, 1985 WBC-to-IBF The Ring Mike Weaver (WBA),
Tim Witherspoon (WBC)
20
5. Lennox Lewis 1. February 7, 1997 — April 22, 2001
2. November 17, 2001 — February 6, 2004
1. undisputed
2. unified

2. The Ring
1. Evander Holyfield (WBA)

12
6. Mike Tyson 1. November 22, 1986 — February 11, 1990
2. March 16, 1996 — November 9, 1996
1. undisputed
2. unified
1. The Ring

11
6. Tommy Burns February 23, 1906 — December 26, 1908 lineal lineal 11
8. Joe Frazier March 4, 1968 — January 22, 1973 undisputed The Ring 10
9. Evander Holyfield 1. October 25, 1990 — November 13, 1992
2. November 6, 1993 — April 22, 1994
3. November 9, 1996 — November 13, 1999
1. undisputed
2. unified
3. unified
8
9. Ezzard Charles September 27, 1950 — July 18, 1951 undisputed The Ring 8
11. Floyd Patterson 1. November 30, 1956 — June 26, 1959
2. June 20, 1960 — September 25, 1962
undisputed The Ring 7
12. Jack Johnson December 26, 1908 — April 5, 1915 lineal lineal 6
12. James J. Jeffries June 9, 1899 — May 13, 1905 lineal lineal 6
12. Jack Dempsey July 4, 1919 — September 23, 1926 undisputed The Ring 6
15. Rocky Marciano September 23, 1952 — April 27, 1956 undisputed The Ring 5
15. George Foreman 1. January 22, 1973 — October 30, 1974
2. November 4, 1994 — June 29, 1995
1. undisputed
2. unified
1. The Ring

5
17. Primo Carnera June 29, 1933 – June 14, 1934 undisputed The Ring 3
17. Riddick Bowe November 13, 1992 — November 6, 1993 undisputed 3
17. Tyson Fury 1. November 28, 2015 — October 12, 2016
2. February 22, 2020 — present
1. unified
2. WBC
1. The Ring
2. The Ring
3
20. James J. Corbett September 7, 1892 – March 17, 1897 lineal lineal 2
20. Jess Willard April 5, 1915 — July 4, 1919 lineal lineal 2
20. Max Schmeling June 12, 1930 – January 7, 1931 undisputed The Ring 2
20. Vitali Klitschko April 24, 2004 — November 9, 2005 WBC The Ring Corrie Sanders (WBO) 2
20. Gene Tunney September 23, 1926 – July 31, 1928 undisputed The Ring 2
20. Michael Spinks September 21, 1985 — February 19, 1987 IBF The Ring 2
26. John L. Sullivan August 29, 1885 — September 7, 1892 lineal lineal 1
26. Bob Fitzsimmons March 17, 1897 — June 9, 1899 lineal lineal 1
26. Marvin Hart July 3, 1905 — February 23, 1906 lineal lineal 1
26. Max Baer June 14, 1934 — June 13, 1935 undisputed The Ring 1
26. James J. Braddock June 13, 1935 — June 22, 1937 undisputed The Ring 1
26. Jersey Joe Walcott July 18, 1951 — September 23, 1952 undisputed The Ring 1
26. Ingemar Johansson June 26, 1959 — June 20, 1960 undisputed The Ring 1
26. Sonny Liston September 25, 1962 — February 25, 1964 undisputed The Ring 1
26. Leon Spinks February 15, 1978 — September 15, 1978 undisputed The Ring 1
26. James (Buster) Douglas February 11, 1990 — October 25, 1990 undisputed 1
26. Oleksandr Usyk September 25, 2021 — Present unified The Ring 1