Tyson, McGregor, Fury, Pacquiao: Fans rank 25 toughest professional fighters in history

Mike Tyson walks to the ring

Mike Tyson, Manny Pacquiao, and Tyson Fury are but a few of the names that come to mind when you consider the toughest fighters on the planet.

The debates between the various professional fight forms are endless, however there is one thing that all professional fighters share: toughness.

It may be very difficult to compare toughness between competitors who never fought in the same sport, however the Ranker Community have collated tens of thousands of votes by users to determine who truly are the toughest professional fighters in history.

The 25 toughest fighters in history ranked

So without further ado, let’s see who they voted for as the 25 toughest professional fighters ever.

25. Georges St. Pierre
24. Randy Couture
23. Chuck Liddell
22. Gene Tunney
21. Mike Tyson
20. Wanderlei Silva

Mike Tyson walks to the ring
LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA – NOVEMBER 28: Mike Tyson exits the ring after receiving a split draw against Roy Jones Jr. during Mike Tyson vs Roy Jones Jr. presented by Triller at Staples Center on November 28, 2020 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Joe Scarnici/Getty Images for Triller)

19. Royce Gracie
18. Julio Cesár Chávez
17. Roberto Duran
16. Conor McGregor
15. Evander Holyfield

Evander Holyfield, aged 59, is looking seriously jacked these days
LAS VEGAS – APRIL 10: Evander Holyfield celebrates his eighth-round TKO victory over Francois Botha in their heavyweight bout at the Thomas & Mack Center April 10, 2010 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images)

14. Dan Henderson
13. Archie Moore
12. Thomas Hearns
11. Arturo Gatti
10. Joe Louis
9. Manny Pacquiáo
8. Jake LaMotta
7. Muhammad Ali
6. Sugar Ray Robinson

5. Jack Dempsey

The heavyweight world champion boxer from 1919 to 1926, Dempsey was a star and cultural icon of the ‘Roaring Twenties’, drawing in the first ever million-dollar gate.

Known for his aggressive style and incredible punching power, that a certain Mike Tyson idolised and replicated sixty years later, famously even referring to himself as Jack Dempsey.

4. ‘Marvelous’ Marvin Hagler

APRIL 1987: General view of a bout between Marvin Hagler and Sugar Ray Leonard at Caesar’s Palace in Las Vegas, Nevada on April 6, 1987. Mandatory Credit: Mike Powell /Allsport

Undisputed middleweight champion from 1980 to 1987 and a part of the iconic four-way rivalry between himself, Thomas Hearns, Roberto Duran, and Sugar Ray Leonard, Hagler was known above anything else for his incredible toughness.

Hagler still holds the highest knockout percentage of middleweight champions at 78 percent, and famously had one of the most durable chins ever, only being knocked down once in his whole career (which is also still a disputed knockdown).

3. George Foreman

George Foreman prepares for a fight
11 Apr 1992: George Foreman looks on after his victory over Alex Stewart. Mandatory Credit: Allsport /Allsport

Before the grills, Foreman was once the most feared fighter on the planet following his brutal knockout of the then-undefeated heavyweight world champion Joe Frazier in 1973.

‘Big George’ had terrifying knockout ability and power, that he himself was apparently even scared of and felt guilty for inflicting on his opponents.

2. Rocky Marciano

Heavyweight champion boxer Rocky Marciano (1923 – 1969), circa 1950. (Photo by Keystone/Getty Images)

Still the only heavyweight champion boxer to have finished his career undefeated, with an astonishing 49-0 record, Marciano epitomised ‘toughness’ with his relentless fighting style, knockout punching power, extremely durable chin, and endless stamina.

The Rock from Brockton’s career knockout-to-win percentage of 87.8% remains one of the highest in heavyweight boxing history.

1. Joe Frazier

18th June 1973: The world heavyweight boxing champion Joe Frazier, before his fight with Joe Bugner. (Photo by Central Press/Getty Images)

If you thought George Foreman was one of the toughest fighters of all time, all one needs to do is take his word when he says that Joe Frazier was really the toughest.

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Despite Foreman’s seemingly comfortable battering of Frazier in 1973, ‘Big George’ said: “but the amazing thing is, he got up six times.

“I’d never seen anything like it. I was thinking to myself, if they don’t hurry up and stop this fight, then he’s gonna get me.” Such was the relentless animal that Joe Frazier was, Frazier was frankly toughness personified.

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