Fury, Tyson, Ali, Joshua: The 50 greatest heavyweight boxers in history according to stats


Tyson Fury retained the WBC heavyweight crown in spectacular fashion over the weekend.

The 'Gypsy King' entered his trilogy fight with Deontay Wilder having never retained one of the four belts associated with boxing's main governing bodies - the WBC, WBO, WBA and IBF.

Fury had famously relinquished the belts over the course of 2015 and 2016 after retreating from the sport on the back of his stunning victory over Wladimir Klitschko due to mental health struggles.

Fury wins Wilder trilogy

However, a second consecutive win against arguably the greatest puncher in heavyweight boxing history was the perfect way for Fury to crown one of the most remarkable sporting comebacks.

Fury had his American opponent down in the third round, but had to pull himself up off the canvas twice just a few minutes later, before eventually dispatching the 'Bronze Bomber' in the 11th round.

And with his professional record now standing at a stunning 31-0-1 when staying undefeated at heavyweight is so, so tough, the Brit simply must rank alongside the modern greats of the division.

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Fury's place amongst the greats

Ok, so that's a given, but what is far more difficult to calculate and comprehend is where Fury would rank if you opened up the criteria to every heavyweight boxer to have stepped between the ropes.

Now, ultimately, comparing eras is only plausible to a certain extent because everything from training methods to rules and technologies to regulations have evolved over the decades.

As such, it might feel as though comparing Muhammad Ali to Mike Tyson and Joe Louis to Vitali Klitschko simply isn't legitimate beyond making for a fun conversation at the pub.

And hey, maybe there's some truth in that, but the wonderful world of data over at BoxRec brings us as close to objectively ranking all the heavyweights in history as you could possibly imagine.


Stats on the greatest heavyweight boxers ever

With a fascinating algorithm that you can learn more about here, the boxers are ranked on the quality of their records by looking at the statistics of the fighters that they shared the ring with.

In other words, you might have a 41-2 record, but if you've been knocking over fighters who have lost 120 fights in their own career, then don't expect to skyrocket up the BoxRec rankings.

Got it? Right, ok then, so you can check out what happens when you process the all-time BoxRec heavyweight rankings on the back of Fury vs Wilder III down below:

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Ninth place for Fury

Take a bow, Tyson, take a bow.

Now, there is a slight caveat to insert here in that BoxRec disclaim that boxers from eras particularly far back in the past are disadvantaged with some of their opponents' records remaining unknown.

However, they do mention the likes of Mike Tyson as having a completed record on the website, so it's not as though Lennox Lewis completely wins by default as one of the finest modern fighters.

And it's important to stress the statistical element here because although Lewis was an all-time great, you'd be hard-pressed to find too many boxing fans who would pick him as the GOAT.



That being said, regardless of how the other boxers line up, Fury can hold his head up with pride that the statistics and history books point to him as one of the 10 greatest heavyweights in history.

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