We all know that long before painted decals began subjecting fighters to untimely and dangerous pratfalls, sweat, water and ice were hazard enough. For some men, it was the metaphoric piss running down their legs that spelled their doom; in some cases, well before the opening bell.
Michael Spinks comes to mind. One look across the ring at prime Iron Mike Tyson was enough to scare the crap…and the fight…out of the then undefeated Spinks. But before young Tyson, boxing was and had always been rife with characters whose very presence sent chills through the very being of their challengers.
Sonny Liston, George Foreman, Mike Tyson, Tommy Hearns, Roberto Duran all had a debilitating effect on the man standing across the ring. I submit that Dwight Muhammad Qawi and Aaron Pryor were no less imposing in their respective times and divisions. These men were not to be trifled with. They would just as soon batter you as they would beat you. And they did both… with relish.
Some men just plain enter the ring with bad intentions; their very appearance evoking mortal fear.
Others just take your soul, piece by piece. The great Joe Frazier was relentless in doing just that. A trashcan lid and two by four would have just made him smile and continue his slow demolition. Stopping him with anything short of a loaded weapon was futile.
They are so many not mentioned here. The list is long and my mind needs refreshing. So please share if you will.