14. Rocky Marciano
Division: Heavyweight (200+)
Years Active: 1947-1955
There is a large subset of boxing fans (albeit mostly Italian-Americans) who will tell you Rocky Marciano is the greatest boxing champion ever. Most boxing experts wouldn’t say that about “The Rock from Brockton,” but he certainly deserves a spot among the greatest ever.
A three-time Ring Magazine Fighter of the Year, Marciano held the world heavyweight title for four years before retiring and knocked out 88 percent of his opponents. He is the only heavyweight champion to retire undefeated and the greatest undefeated fighter in boxing history.
His wins over Archie Moore, Ezzard Charles (twice) and Jersey Joe Walcott (twice) established his credibility as a champion, although some questioned how much these opponents had left when he faced them.
Nonetheless, the partial inspiration for Sylvester Stallone’s Rocky had an extraordinary run and knew when to call it quits. Blessed with an iron chin, unconventional style and amazing heart and power, he wasn’t the greatest ever but certainly has a well-admired place in history.