In recent months, the debate on international boxing has been dominated by the upcoming fight between Vasyl Lomachenko and Teofimo Lopez. Fans are not only captivated by the total reunification of the world belts and the absolute value of the two protagonists.
As a result, in today's in-depth analysis, we'll look back at ten great challenges in the past that pitted young prospects against seasoned champions.
Sugar Ray Robinson vs Randolph Turpin (1951)
Battling the greatest boxer of all time can be a terrifying experience. Sugar's record had already been tainted by a single defeat by the time Robinson traveled to England to face the 23-year-old Turpin.
The God of Boxing spent the days leading up to the fight golfing and signing autographs, but in the ring, the young rival's crazy determination proved too much for him, and he was defeated on points in a historic defeat.
Davey Moore vs Roberto Duran (1983)
It may seem unbelievable today, but Davey Moore, then 24 years old, entered the ring as a favorite against the great Roberto Duran. The bookmakers remembered Manos De Piedra's lackluster performance the year before against the not-so-great Kirkland Laing and assumed he'd finished.
Instead, Duran silenced his detractors by inflicting an unforgettable punishment on his unfortunate opponent and knocking him out in eight rounds.
Antonio Cervantes vs Wilfred Benitez (1976)
The talented Puerto Rican Benitez, who still holds the record for being the youngest world champion of all time, performed one of the most famous "youth feats." He was only 17 years and 5 months old when he threw Colombian Cervantes, who had risen to the eleventh world defense, into disarray by consistently anticipating him on time. The victory was even more decisive than the judges had predicted.
Floyd Mayweather vs Saul Alvarez (2013)
Count Mexican superstar "Canelo" Alvarez, who received an authentic boxing lesson from the more experienced Floyd Mayweather in 2013, among those who took the big step too soon.
The challenger, feeling unstoppable, entered the ring without a backup plan, and when things went south, he was unable to intervene to save the match. A judge dared to make a fair decision, but Mayweather's dominance was undeniable.
Ernest Marcel vs Alexis Arguello (1974)
Everyone remembers Nicaraguan champion Arguello's great victories and defeats as a super lightweight against the formidable Pryor. This blunder, which El Flaco made when he was still a 21-year-old with high hopes for his first world attempt, is less well-known.
Marcel, the brave Panamanian, was more experienced and shrewd, and despite having to overcome some difficult situations, he took home a well-deserved victory on points.
Michael Nunn vs James Toney (1991)
Nunn was favored at the time of the match, which today might appear to be a "triple" match. The left-handed boxer, who was trained by Angelo Dundee, was already a superstar, whereas Toney, who was 22 at the time, had no big names on his resume.
The challenger's incredible comeback, after struggling to find the target in the first half of the match, and the brutal KO of him left everyone speechless.
Sonny Liston vs Muhammad Ali (1964)
The ferocious brown bear, who knocked out opponents like twigs, on the one hand, and the impertinent young man, with his grimaces and rhyming provocations, on the other. Despite the obviousness of the prediction, the ring delivered an unexpected verdict: the champion retired after six rounds due to a shoulder injury.
Is it a prodigious victory or a rigged match orchestrated by the underworld? We'll never know for sure, but the victory that launched Ali's legend lives on in history.
Alexis Arguello vs Ray Mancini (1981)
Mancini, 20, had enough grit, talent, and boundless heart to climb the Arguello mountain: the Nicaraguan was too strong and experienced to be overwhelmed by the frantic rhythm of Boom Boom.
El Flaco, who had matured into a true champion since his defeat to Marcel, patiently and deftly repelled his opponent's frantic attacks and knocked him out in the fourteenth round.
Daniel Zaragoza vs Erik Morales (1997)
The Mexican derby between Zaragoza and Morales was the most classic of handovers. El Raton, despite being nearly 40 years old, made his opponent sweat his proverbial seven shirts before surrendering in the eleventh round of a match that was on the line.
Felix Trinidad vs Fernando Vargas (2000)
Fernando Vargas had a lot of great qualities, one of which was his courage. Although many advised him to wait before confronting the terrible Trinidad, he refused to listen to reason and attempted the feat of his life just days before his 23rd birthday.
Vargas went down twice in the first round, but he got up and continued to fight until the final collapse, which happened only in the last round.