Lennox Lewis’ ultimate boxer based on opponents including Briggs power and Holyfield skills… but Tyson doesn’t feature – The Sun

LENNOX LEWIS named Evander Holyfield and Shannon Briggs in the list of best fighters he has faced – but left out Mike Tyson.

Lewis has done it all in the heavyweight division, losing just twice, in shock upsets to Olivier McCall and Hasim Rahman, but avenged both – meaning he beat every man he shared the ring with.

In an interview with Ring Magazine in 2015, the Brit broke down his past opponents and who was the best in what department.

Holyfield, who he draw against before beating in their rematch, was named as the greatest Lewis faced as well as the most skilful with the best defence.

He said: "Holyfield was the best opponent I faced in my career.

"Evander was very talented, although I was disappointed that he used his head as a punch in those fights. The word was that he was the greatest heavyweight of our era but nobody could say that until he fought Lennox Lewis.

"In the first fight he was overconfident, singing during his ring walk, so I went after him and he was shocked to get that draw.

"Second time around he knew what to expect so it was a tougher fight but I still won comfortably.

"Holyfield had excellent variety to his defence. He could cross his arms like George Foreman but he was also well schooled in the traditional type of defence you get taught in the amateurs.

"Evander presented a real challenge and I had to put in a lot of effort to break through. I couldn’t just land one or two shots and be content; it had to be threes, fours and fives."

Despite beating Tyson in 2002, Lewis named veteran Briggs as the quickest and most powerful opponent he shared the ring with.

He explained: "I was surprised by Briggs’ handspeed. He was able to close the gap very quickly and that allowed him to get off the big punches. Sometimes you don’t realize how quick someone is until you’re in there.

"He lacked endurance but Briggs certainly knew how to put his bodyweight behind a punch. Unfortunately for him you need the full package when you face me so power isn’t enough.

"Fans may expect me to say McCall or Hasim Rahman for punching power but I basically set myself up against both of them."

McCall was credited for having the best chin while Rahman was named the strongest.

Lewis' last fight was against Vitali Klitschko in 2003 – his trickiest opponent.


He said: "Vitali used his awkwardness to good effect. Everyone said that I should have fought him again but he was just icing on my retirement cake.

"I took him on at short notice and despite being mentally ready, my physical preparation wasn’t ideal. I beat him at my worst so there was no need for a rematch.

"He definitely experienced the uppercuts."

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