Question- Is boxing even considered to be a marquee sport anymore? The state of boxing continues to be called into question and its once must-see events have now taken a back seat to the bright lights of the world of mixed martial arts. Two of the best junior middleweights in the world square off this weekend as Canelo Alvarez takes on the Cuban defector Erislandy Lara. Die hard fight fans are well aware of the showdown, but the casual viewer, who at one point was all in for a fight party on a Saturday night, is now taking his or her option to go and see the latest movie release. But as fight fasn get ready for this weekend's fight, let's not forget about one of the greatest fights of all time and venture back to a time where fight night was a national holiday.
It was April 15, 1985, and the scene was the legendary Caesar’s Palace in Las Vegas. Longtime middleweight champion Marvin Hagler was taking on junior middleweight champion Tommy Hearns. Everyone from Detroit to Jersey, the original hometowns of the fighters, was prepped and ready for what was billed as “The Fight”, later becoming known as “The War.” The anticipation was that it would be a good fight, but no one expected what took place after the opening bell. The first round of Hagler-Hearns is considered the greatest round in boxing history. Both fighters were determined to seek and destroy (although little time was spent seeking). Ring magazine called the bout the most electrifying eight minutes ever, and Hagler-Hearns won Fight of the Year honors for 1985 despite lasting only three rounds.
In a subsequent HBO broadcast featuring both Hagler and Hearns in studio commenting on the fight, Hearns revealed,
"...that first round took everything I had, man..." When asked in the ring after the bout if he was hurt by Hearns' first right hand, a blow that caused him to step back and then fall into a clinch, Hagler commented "...he definitely tried to put the bomb on me...he can punch..."
In the end, Hagler was victorious earning a third round TKO over Hearns. It was his tenth knockout in eleven successful title defenses and is widely regarded as the pinnacle achievement in his career. It cemented his legacy as one of the greatest middleweights of all-time, and will forever go down in history as one of the most memorable fights of all time.
Marvin Hagler vs Thomas Hearns - The War (Part 1):
Marvin Hagler vs Thomas Hearns - The War (Part 2):