Throughout the history of boxing, certain bouts have stood out not only for their drama, but also for the cultural impact and legendary status they have bestowed on the participants. These bouts have captivated audiences around the world, transcending the sport and becoming iconic events in its history.

  • The Fight of the Century: Joe Frazier vs. Muhammad Ali I (1971)

This historic bout marked the first time two undefeated heavyweight champions clashed in the ring. Held at Madison Square Garden, the fight saw Joe Frazier and Muhammad Ali battle it out in a contest that lived up to its monumental hype. Frazier won by unanimous decision after 15 grueling rounds, handing Ali his first professional loss.

  • The Rumble in the Jungle: Muhammad Ali vs. George Foreman (1974)

Taking place in Kinshasa, Zaire, this match is famous for Ali’s introduction of the “Rope-a-dope” tactic. Ali, considered the underdog, recaptured the heavyweight title from Foreman in the eighth round by knockout, in a masterful display of strategy and endurance.

  • The Thrilla in Manila: Muhammad Ali vs. Joe Frazier III (1975)

Regarded by many as one of the greatest boxing matches ever, this was the third and final showdown between Ali and Frazier. The intense heat of the Philippines added to the fight’s brutality, which ended when Frazier’s trainer stopped the fight after the 14th round, securing Ali’s victory in a fiercely contested battle.

  • Sugar Ray Leonard vs. Thomas Hearns I (1981)

This thrilling fight was for the undisputed welterweight championship. Leonard and Hearns fought a tactical and physically demanding fight, with Leonard coming back from behind to stop Hearns in the 14th round, in a dramatic display of heart and resilience.

Fights of the Century

These iconic bouts showcase the drama, skill and physical power of boxing, making them unforgettable events in the rich tapestry of the sport. Each fight not only defined the boxers’ careers, but also left a lasting legacy on the sport itself, illustrating why boxing is often referred to as the “sweet science.”