Throughout history there have been many sporting heroes that have inspired, motivated and encouraged others to become the best that they could be. For me the number one sporting legend of all time is without a doubt the Great Rocky Marciano.
For many reasons but above all his indestructible will to win the Rock deserves all the accolades poured on him and is the finest example of how any obstacle can be overcome when someone refuses to accept the obstacles put in front of his quest for glory.
For someone to remain undefeated throughout their professional boxing career and then retire gracefully as Rocky Marciano did is an incredible achievement in itself, to manage such a feat with the physical limitations the Rock had is one of the finest examples of how a mans sheer will to win can conquer there is in any sport.
The focus and commitment of Marciano was shown at the very beginning of his boxing career when his stamina let him down against Henry Lester in his first amateur bout.
After the match Marciano vowed that he would never turn up for a fight out of condition again and not only did he keep his word but he trained to such an extent that many consider him the fittest heavyweight boxer that ever lived.
The once suspect stamina had improved so much that it became one of his biggest advantages as no one could keep up with the never ending onslaught of punches that became his future trademark.
That is just one of many examples of why Marciano became the fighter he did and what is more astounding is that with his physical limitations he should never have become a champion in the first place let alone retire unbeaten.
How could a man who had average skill and was small, light and old for a novice heavyweight boxer become the only one in history to beat all those put in front of him regardless of their superior skill, height, weight and experience is a question that has baffled boxing experts for decades.
The answer is that what the Rock achieved shouldn’t and wouldn’t have been possible but for the following qualities.
His total dedication to the task at hand.
To become arguably the fittest heavyweight of all time required a training tempo that exceeded that of all the rivals he faced. It is well known that the Rock lived for his training and he would exercise for hours each and every single day of the year whether he had a fight planned or not.
The result of such commitment meant that whoever fought him simply couldn’t match the pace such fanatical conditioning brings and regardless of talent they would eventually submit to the relentless stamina of Marciano.
Although he was not as raw as some say, it is beyond doubt that Marciano was not the most skillful boxer to ever lace a pair of gloves. However, his willingness to take his opponents best shot in order to land his own made up for his lack of grace and this tactic above all requires great courage. For Marciano his style of boxing meant that it was a question of when and not if he would be caught with punches that would fell most men.
His self belief.
To constantly face boxers who are bigger and better than you, to seek no hiding place or clinch to save you, to never give an inch of ground and to be willing to take the best punches a man has to offer takes courage for sure but it also requires total self belief in your abilities and strength of character. Rocky Marciano’s battles in the ring are the stuff of legend for many reasons and not least because of his total belief in himself. As Bruce Lee said, sooner or later the man who beliefs he will win is the one that does. Nowhere is this clearer than in the wars of Marciano.
His will to win.
Of all the great qualities Rocky Marciano possessed it was his will to win more than anything else that made him the great champion he was. To overcome his physical short comings and even turn some of them into advantages requires a will to win few of us will ever possess. However, it was the way he imposed his will to win on his opponent once inside the ring that was truly phenomenal.
The best example of this was with his fight for the title against Jersey Joe Walcott. Not only was Marciano knocked down in the first round but he then suffered nearly 13 rounds of being hit at will by the far more skillful Walcott. However, once again Marciano’s refusal to give in paid dividends as he caught up with the tiring champion and the result was one of the best punches ever seen in the ring (unless you were poor old Jersey Joe) that left the champion knocked out cold.
The lesson to be learned.
Their are many of life’s lessons that can be taken from someone like Rocky Marciano such as dedication, focus and courage but if a study of his life and achievements shows anything it is that an unshakable will to win can enable anyone to fulfil their destiny regardless of what obstacles are put in front of them.
Their have been many great sports people over the years but only a select few have triumphed despite and not because of their physical qualities. Of these select few, Rocky Marciano shines out like a beacon that should inspire everyone to fulfil their ambitions what ever that may be for he has shown that a will that can not be broken can achieve anything including retiring unbeaten in the toughest sport there is. Therefore, if you only take one thing from this site take the inspiration the Rock’s will to win provides and apply it to your own dreams.
Was Rocky Marciano the best of all time?
With an unblemished record that still stands to this day. A fitness level that enabled him to through more punches per round than any other heavyweight and an unconquerable will to win. Many believe Rocky Marciano was the best heavy in history. What do you think?
What Other Visitors Have Said
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He could really punch and when he dedicated himself to a fight no one could beat him. Heavyweight record for most title defences. Remained champion for …
Rocky “The Rock” Marciano!
The undefeated record speaks for itself. There has never been another heavyweight fighter that has retired undefeated (59-0)…and there never will!!!! …
Rocky to small
The size difference between say Lewis,Ali and Foreman would have been so difficult for Rocky to overcome. Not really fair to compare as generational increases …
Fight to the finish,Ref cannot stop the fight ,who could possibly beat The Great Marciano!
Never beaten. Arms was. 6 inches shorter than . Any mans he. Fought
Jim Jeffries retired undefeated as the World Heavyweight Champion. In his prime he would either defeat or give any other Heavyweight Champion a furious …
Rocky Marciano will always be undefeated and the best
Grit, Incredible conditioning and a insane will to win and the most devastatingly powerful hands make Rocky stand on his own. He just had a true Lion’s …
My reason for marciano is that he should never even have been champion to start with , so number 1 reason is he over came so many obstacles to become champ …
It was his stamina, strength and will to win
rocky marciano was the greatest
I do think Rocky was the best because just like you said preaviously: He had that powerfull will wich makes the diference between the normal people and …
I agree Marciano brutal in the ring a gentleman outside the ring.
It is great to see that the remarkable Rocky Marciano has been remembered on this page. As Marciano’s biographer the more I discover about him the more …
Muhammad Ali had a better chin and more willpower and beat better fighters that Rocky Marciano would get killed if he met, but no doubt Marciano was a …
no one can beat him
Rocky Marciano definitely belongs in the upper tier of past heavyweight champions, but quite honestly I wouldn’t rank him above a prime Louis or Ali. I …
Well he may of not been champ but to the english he was a champion. He had power in his hook and we all know he should of won against mohammed ali and …
Rocky was not human and was undoubtably kissed by god on the forehead when he was born he had a heart of gold out the ring and the hardest hitter of all …