3 part question. How would Jake LaMotta have done vs these opponents?
15 rounds at middleweight. I think these would have been some pretty brutal and exciting fights myself.
Fullmer beats Jake 2 out of 3 times. He also is a better fighter.
Graziano beats LaMotta 2 out of 3 times.
All results by decision LaMotta had an iron chin.
They fought in an era when the talent was deep in both the welter (Basilio) and middleweight divisions.
La Motta had to rally and score a knockout against Dauthuille to keep his title, for Christ sake! LaMotta was a very good fighter, but overrated. He's given too much credit for beating the great Sugar Ray only 1 out of 6 times!
I believe he outpoints Basilio. He was stronger physically and had more experience against better opposition.
He would happily trade with the smaller Graziano, knowing that he could absorb Rocky's best and wear him down for a late rounds TKO. Jake took shots from Bob Satterfield, Ray Robinson and Lloyd Marshall, so I have no doubt that he could take Graziano's punches.
Fullmer is a tough call. His chin is in the same category as is his punch(both were light-hitting maulers). The difference is that Fullmer was completely unorthodox. He did everything backwards and you never knew what to expect(imagine a smaller version of Oscar Bonavena sans punching power).
This fight goes the distance 100 out of 100 times with split decisions every time. A nightmare fight for judges because these guys really do cancel out each other in every respect. This fight would need old rules to prove who was better, like 45 rounds or a fight to the finish.
Here's a fight: LaMotta vs. Tony Zale. I'll take the Man of Steel Zale by decision. He's got the chin to take LaMotta's best and the punch to get his respect. Plus he would be one of the few to not focus his attack on Jake's concrete head and instead go for his body. Zale is one of the most brutal bodypunchers in history. I wonder how LaMotta's ribs would feel after 15 rounds of that kind of pounding?
lamotta unanimous points win over fullmer
Graziano split decision over lamotta after some brutal exchanges from both fighters
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