Four Kings: The intoxicating and captivating tale of four men who changed the face of boxing from award-winning sports writer George Kimball
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FOR those fight fans who haven’t got access to the discovery+ streaming service, find a friend who has because it’s featuring an exhilarating documentary series to drool over. The book can be difficult to read at points, as Kimball tries to shoehorn in loads of information that doesn't always seem particularly relevant. He regularly has sentences that span five or six lines and have more commas than vowels. Also, he builds suspense in some chapters by not telling you who's won the fight until you've read a blow-by-blow account. But in other chapters you'll learn the outcome of the fight in the first couple of lines, which is a bit bizarre. Although this may look unfair to Hearns, he scores an 8 due to losing his biggest fights and having the least signature wins out of the group. In addition, all but one of his five losses come by way of KO/TKO. In his defence, his win against Virgil Hill should be more rejoiced than it is when reviewing the ‘Hitman’s’ career.
Factor in Duran’s achievements at his natural poundage of 135, and the fact that he later managed to win a major belt at middleweight, and Roberto deserves to be placed in the ALL-TIME Top-10 – as he is in fact placed my many historians. Do Leonard, Hagler or Hearns deserve to be placed so high in terms of all-time? Maybe Leonard.
The last factor is one most use to separate the four, however, it deserves more detail than looking at the records and realising Leonard beat everyone. Indeed he did thus earns 3/5 points and not top marks due to his first fight against one ‘fab four’ member resulting in a loss at the hands of Duran as well as an unconvincing win against Hagler that people still dispute the result of to this day. Thanks to being a game champion and carving out one of the closest fights in boxing, Hagler scores 2 points here as the fight, and win against Hearns is the best out of the nine fights the group had and arguably the best in boxing. The other two greats dismally score 1 point apiece as they only had 1 yet emphatic win during this competitive time.
New Showtime sports documentary “The Kings” chronicles the golden age of boxing, focusing on four big names from the ea: Roberto “Manos de Piedra” (“Hands of Stone”) Duran, Marvelous Marvin Hagler, Thomas “The Hitman” Hearns, and Sugar Ray Leonard. Another maximum amount of points awarded to Leonard for his attributes. Many believe him to be the most skilful of the four and reviewing his points with these attributes that viewpoint might just ring true. He is ranked first in Bleacher Report’s ’15 fastest boxers of all-time list’ and it is hard to argue with it when watching his performances. Taking part in this series is a tremendous honour for me. It’s an opportunity to share my story and the values I hold dear. I’ve always said, “Leadership isn’t about telling others what to do; it’s about showing them how it’s done.” Through my journey, I hope to inspire others to strive for excellence, to embrace discipline and determination, and to realize that anyone can become a true king or queen in their own life.”In short, there is a true reason their era is so romanticized and so highly-regarded. They are timeless fighters who had timeless fights with one another, through all the action and drama and controversy. Being too young to enjoy the four kings in their pomp, this book offered me the insight into their greatness that I missed out on myself.