Roy Jones Jr leaves Mike Tyson and Floyd Mayweather off his boxing Mount Rushmore

  • Tom Ward

Roy Jones Jr named the fighters he’d include in his boxing Mount Rushmore – but there was no room for Mike Tyson or Floyd Mayweather.

The 53-year-old ring legend went on former NFL star Shannon Sharpe’s YouTube channel ‘Club Shay Shay’ to discuss his 2020 exhibition bout with ‘The Baddest Man on the Planet’.

Host Sharpe – a former defensive tight end for the Denver Broncos and Baltimore Ravens – asked him a number of questions related to boxing.

Naturally, his fighting career was a topic of conversation and so too were his picks for the top four fights in the sport’s history.

Jones Jr, after being put on the spot, said: “I have to be honest with you, I’d be at the top of my list, so take me out of there.

“I’d put Muhammad Ali at the top, I would probably put Sugar Ray Robinson second, I would probably put Salvador Sanchez third, and I would probably stop there because after that I could take [Sugar Ray] Leonard, [Roberto] Duran, [Julio Cesar] Chavez.”

Sharpe, 53, added: “Hagler?”

Jones, 52, replied: “[Marvin] Hagler would come after that.

Roy Jones Jr pictured with Chris Eubank Jr

“But if you want my top three, that’s my top three. Anything after that, they’re my top three.”

Jones, who is considered by many to be one of the greatest to ever do it, also regards the ’70s as the golden age of boxing.

RJ, like many, also doesn’t think the likes of Tyson Fury and Oleksandr Usyk would have stood much of a chance against some of their predecessors.

He continued: “The reason I say the ’70s is the golden era of boxing is because everybody in the heavyweight division, if they were still around, if you take the top ten from the ’70s and inserted each one of them into today’s top ten, each one would be heavyweight champ right now.

“Because that’s how durable, how rugged, that’s how well-gifted at boxing most of those guys was.

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Muhammad Ali

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“Everybody in the top ten back in that time was heavyweight champion quality or character type of fighter.”

Jones also dubbed George Foreman vs Ron Lyle as ‘one of the best heavyweight fights’ he has ever seen.

He revealed: “I mean one of the greatest fights of all time that people need to go look at… I watch a few fights over and over, like I watch Hearns-Leonard all the time, I watch Leonard-Duran a lot, I watch Hagler-Hearns, I watch Hagler-Leonard…

“But one of the best fights, some of the best fights, because that’s just some of them, the list goes on and on, but if you really want to get a good appreciation of boxing, you really have to go back and watch George Foreman versus Ron Lyle. One of the best heavyweight fights ever.

“Then one of the heavyweight fights that also touched me a lot as an older kid as I was growing up in boxing – I became a Larry Holmes fan after watching Larry Holmes fight Ken Norton because I knew how hard of a time Ken Norton gave Muhammad Ali every time he had seen him. 

“For Larry Holmes to come in and deal with that same thing and having to overcome it was exceptional to me. It really made me become a Larry Holmes fan.” 

READ MORE: Ali, Lewis, Louis, Marciano: George Foreman ranks top 5 heavyweights of all time – no Mike Tyson

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