Prize fighting, or boxing, is a sport that has roots that go all the way back to the early Greek civilization. Though, for most people today, when you think of a boxing match you immediately conger up images of one heavyweight boxer taking on another.
Numerous movies, books and plays find their interesting settings revolving around a key character brought to life in the person of a heavyweight boxer. One who is out to beat the odds and prove himself to others, and often to himself as well, in the unfolding of the story.
Some of those fictional stories of a heavyweight boxer who overcomes the odds to live his dream can be compelling. Although, many of the true-to-life stories behind the real professional boxers are more than interesting enough to keep the fans in their corner and rooting for them.
Heavyweight is a designation for a weight class in both professional and amateur levels of boxing. Of the 17 different weight classes in this sport, it is the class for the largest of boxers and is probably the most widely known category of classes.
Almost all of the biggest, most promoted, most exciting and highest-money grossing boxing matches have been those that pit one undefeated heavyweight boxer against another.
These athletes usually have a similar, clean statistical record of wins. There is no doubt that professional boxing, especially at the heavyweight level is a huge and profitable industry.
A fighter who weighs-in at over 200 pounds, or 90.72 kilograms is considered to be a heavyweight boxer. This standing is consistent with all of the main professional organizations of this sport worldwide, including: the International Boxing Federation (IBF), the World Boxing Association (WBA), the World Boxing Council (WBC), the International Boxing Organization (IBO)78 and the World Boxing Organization (WBO).
For a long time in the sport history, this boxing division had no maximum limit for weight (unlike the other 16 boxing weight classes) and so this class has been rather vaguely defined historically, allowing for some under the 200 pound threshold to compete as heavyweights during the 19th century.
However, in 1920, the classification was more formally defined and a minimum weight was set at 175 pounds in order for a fighter to be considered a heavyweight boxer. This eventually evolved into the light heavyweight division. Today, any fighter who is over 200 pounds cannot contend in any class other than heavyweight.
It is essentially impossible to identify who the first heavyweight boxer champion was because of the fact that the sport history stretches back as far as recorded history goes.
It is certain that there must have been large fighters unfairly matched against lighter athletes, since the standards of classifications have only been in use within the last 150 years or so.
It is easier to identify champions of recent times. In fact, nowadays with the excess of media coverage, there is an abundant amount of news on this sport. Information that covers all of the current contenders and their matches in great detail, through boxing magazines, the internet and also on the cable sports channels.
And, there is no doubt that real fans of it simply cannot get enough of the behind-the-scenes stories concerning the contending boxing greats, that are in contention with one another to be the next great heavyweight boxer.
It is an interesting development to note that in recent years, the title of heavyweight boxer champion has actually become fractured among the different sanctioning organizations of this professional sport.
This has made it somewhat more difficult to determine a sole heavyweight boxer as the champion. Because of this there is another title of "Undisputed Champion", which indicates that one heavyweight fighter has been able to defeat those other champions that have risen to the top of the various professional boxing organizations.
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