Who Has the Longest Undefeated Streak in Boxing?

Last Updated: 12.11.19

 

Even though there are some insanely cool kickboxing items flooding the market right now – you can check it out here –  plain ol’ boxing still stands to this day as the king of combat sports. While its natural evolution has made it easier for some and harder for others when it comes to getting wins, boxers like Jimmy Wilde and Floyd Mayweather Jr. have managed to climb to amazing heights.

 

The mystique

Boxers have always taken a huge amount of pride in their unbeaten records and how they can remain at the top of the food chain when it comes to in-ring activity. This allure of invincible fighter seems to offer something that those who have already been beaten cannot possess anymore. 

While there are great fighters today who are yet to lose a match, guys like Andre Ward, Gennady ‘Triple G’ Golovkin, and Terence Crawford, the history books are stacked with names who traveled the land far and away, defeating anything and anyone they came up against.

However, due to the multitude of factors involved and the continuous evolution of boxing as a sport, we believe it would be unfair to point out a single name so what we’re going to do instead is mention a few boxers who have indeed achieved legend status due to the way they managed to perform.

 

 

Jimmy Wilde 

The Welshman made his in-ring debut on New Year’s Day 1911 by knocking out his opponent in a span of three rounds and starting what was going to be an incredible career. Wilde fought 28 times only in 1911, finishing the year with a stellar 27 wins and 1 draw. By the end of 1914, while the entire world was entering chaos, he had amassed the longest unbeaten streak in history.

His record of 93-0-1 still stands to this day and it is hard to believe somebody can even come close to it. The 5’2’’ sensation was the first flyweight world champion ever,  and also owns two of the arguably best nicknames in the sport’s history: ‘The Mighty Atom’ and ‘The Ghost with the Hammer in his Hand’, the last one attributed to his freakish power for such a tiny man.

‘The Mighty Atom’ managed to finish his career with a ridiculous 132-3-1, frustratingly notching up 99 knockouts and stopping just short of an entire hundred. 

 

Julio Cesar Chavez

Chavez is soundly considered to be the greatest Mexican fighter of all time and also, for many of the late 1980s and early ‘90s, the greatest fighter on the planet. This guy was a force of nature in anything and everything between super featherweight and super lightweight.

By the year 1993, Chavez had a whopping 87-0, a world champion at three weight divisions, and widely regarded as the undisputed pound-for-pound king. However, the Mexican overreached at that point and tried to go up to welterweight, barely scraping a draw and suffering his first defeat three fights later and ending his streak at 90 wins. 

 

Packey McFarland

What is amazing about McFarland’s 70-0-5 record is the way his career finished without ever getting a shot at a world title. The Chicago native was a devastating force at both lightweight and welterweight from 1904 until his very last fight in 1915. 

He managed to defeat future champions Freddie Welsh and Jack Britton but his own crack at the gold remained elusive. If we would also count Newspaper Decisions into this, Packey would have finished his impressive career with a 105-1-6 record. 

 

Willie Pep

Willie Pep was indeed a very busy man because less than a year after making his pro debut in July 1940 he had already racked up a record of 24-0 and his career only went up from there. By March of 1943, he had amassed 62 wins without even the slightest fear of a draw.

His overall output was incredible and he continued to travel the United States fighting anywhere and everywhere a ring could be installed. In the sole month of January 1943, he won 3 fights over 10 rounds. Even though Pep lost to Sammy Angott and ended his streak, he did go on to win the world featherweight title twice and end his career with an incredible 229-11-1.

 

 

Jimmy Barry

Barry is the reason why we said that due to the long period of time over which this list was created, simply stating the win-loss columns will not always tell the truth.  While ‘The Little Tiger’ fought his way to the top back in 1891 when records were not the most reliable, it appears he went on to win 60 fights and claim two world championships at ‘100lbs’ and bantamweight.

Standing at 5’2’’, he seems to have knocked out his first 11 opponents, all of whom were making their debuts. Furthermore, his career ended with 8 straight draws which were probably a little generously given to keep the legendary pugilist’s undefeated streak going.

 

Ricardo Lopez

Since he was the star of the smallest of weight classes, Lopez was sadly underrated even though he was one of the greatest fighters on the planet throughout the 1990s. Sadly, not many people except hardcore boxing fans have ever heard of him.

He picked up the only blemish on his record in 1998 when he drew with Rosendo Alvarez, a little bump in the road which was remedied eight months later when he won the rematch. He also stepped up to fight the last three fights of his career at light flyweight, winning them and the IBF title in the process. 

 

Rocky Marciano

The Brockton Blockbuster was the record-holder for the longest unblemished record of all time for 60 years until Floyd ‘Money’ Mayweather managed to reach his tally. In only eight short years, Marciano amassed an incredible 49-0 record with a terrifying 43 knockouts as he completely dominated the heavyweight division.

It is true that the level of opposition was not always the best for Rocky but, at the same time, he did manage to defeat the likes of Joe Louis, Jersey Joe Walcott, and Archie Moore before he retired in 1955. 

 

Floyd Mayweather Jr

While self-titling himself TBE (The Best Ever), Mayweather has made more money than anyone else on this list by a considerable margin. While not the most popular but undoubtedly the best boxer of his generation, he defeated anybody who stood in his way from 1996 to 2015, from super feather all the way up to light-middleweight. 

While he’s accused of not fighting too many great opponents while they were in their prime, he does have legendary names like Manny Pacquiao, Oscar de la Hoya, Shane Mosley, and Miguel Cotto on his resume. 

After his much-publicized fight with Conor McGregor in August 2018, he managed to jump above Rocky Marciano and set a new 50-0 record, even though somewhat blemished by the fact that he didn’t do it against a trained boxer. 

 

Cesar Rene Cuenca

Cuenca is quite probably the face you’ll see in the dictionary when you look up ‘padded record’. This fighter managed to box his way to an incredible set of numbers without ever really challenging himself against proper opponents.

Stacking up 47 wins and no defeats with every single one of the victories coming in his home country of Argentina, he got himself a shot at a world title and traveled to Macau to win against previously unbeaten Chinese star Ik Yang. 

However, he did fight twice again after that against Eduard Troyanovsky and got knocked out on both occasions, while only an incredible number of two of his 48 career wins came by this manner of ending a match.

 

Conclusions

As you can see, there are many factors involved in trying to see the longest undefeated streak in boxing. When we choose to simply look at the win column, we’ll see Jimmy Wilde with his 93 wins but also 1 draw.

When taking the overall win-loss-draw column into account, Floyd ‘Money’ Mayweather stands out as the top undefeated boxer of all time with his perfect and crisp 50-0 record even though, as we said, that last one came against a trained MMA fighter, not a boxer. 

 

 

 

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