What would happen if a boxer fought a wrestler? What would happen if a boxer fought a Brazilian jiu-jitsu practitioner?
During the early days of MMA, fans of combat sports argued over which was the better fighter, a boxer or a mixed martial artist.
As time progressed, educated fans of both sports came to an agreement. They acknowledged that if a boxer were to fight a mixed martial artist under the rules of boxing, a boxer would win.
Conversely, they agreed that if a mixed martial artist were to fight a boxer under the rules of MMA, the mixed martial artist would win.
There were many boxers who tried to join the MMA bandwagon in the past, but most of them failed. Fighters include Milo Savage, Art Jimmerson, Julius Francis, Ray Mercer and James Toney.
The aforementioned boxers were not as successful as, say Holly Holm was in transitioning to MMA. Of course, not everyone can. But theoretically, there are a few who might have enjoyed some success in the cage had they tried MMA.
Here are Five Boxers Who Could Have Been MMA Champions.
He was widely regarded as one of the greatest boxers of all time. Roberto Duran was a versatile brawler and in-fighter in the ring. He earned him the nickname of “Manos de Piedra” (Hands of Stone) for his devastating punching power.
Duran held world titles from lightweight to middleweight, including a reign as the undisputed and lineal lightweight champion from 1978 to 1979 and the lineal welterweight champion in 1980.
Duran grew up in one of the poorest parts of Panama and literally had to fight for survival. He relished the notion of taking out all of that pent-up anger and frustration on everybody. Yes, he was a smaller man. So he would likely have competed in MMA’s bantamweight or featherweight divisions.
Due to his immense power, chances are he would have been able to hang with many MMA fighters.