Although trash-talking is fairly common in all sports, boxing takes it to another level and has been part of the sport for a decade. It’s all about trying to get into your opponents head. Some of the most memorable boxers in history have produced some amazing trash-talking quotes, and most have the fighting ability to back them up. Here are some of the best trash talks ever given in boxing history.
“I AM THE GREATEST, I’M THE GREATEST THAT EVER LIVED. I DON’T’ HAVE A MARK ON MY FACE”
- Muhammad Ali after he beat Sonny Liston in 1964
Muhammad Ali was the king of trash talking, and has the boxing ability to back it up. Throughout his career he had many memorable quotes and speeches to try and get the upper hand over his opponent and belittle them. After his victory against Sonny Liston in 1964, Ali self-proclaimed himself as the greatest that ever lived as a warning to any future competitors.
“MY MAIN OBJECTIVE IS TO BE PROFESSIONAL, BUT TO KILL HIM.”
- Mike Tyson before his fight against Lennox Lewis
Although boxing is a combat sport that involves boxers fighting against each other and trying to knock them out, there is a limit to what is acceptable. In 2002, Mike Tyson got carried away in his pre-match speech and threatened to kill Lennox Lewis while they were fighting.
“I AM THE KING! KING OF THE WORLD. EAT YOUR WORDS! EAT! EAT YOUR WORDS! I AM THE GREATEST!”
- Muhammad Ali to the press
Trash talking is not just limited to boxer against boxer. Back in 1964, Muhammad Ali attacked the press after he won the heavyweight world championship, despite the press quickly writing off his chances of winning it and betting against him.
“HE HAS EVERYTHING A BOXER NEEDS EXCEPT SPEED, STAMINA, A PUNCH, AND THE ABILITY TO TAKE PUNISHMEN. IN OTHER WORDS, HE OWNS A PAIR OF SHORTS.”
- Blackie Sherrod on a Heavyweight contender
It also seems that it’s not just boxers that initiate trash talking. Legendary sportswriter Blackie Sherrod wrote a damning report of this heavyweight contender, criticising everything about him.
“RICKY HATTON AIN’T NOTHING BUT A FAT MAN. I’M GOING TO PUNCH HIM IN HIS BEER BELLY. HE AIN’T GOOD ENOUGH TO BE MY SPARRING PARTNER.”
- Floyd Mayweather on Rick Hatton
During Floyd Mayweather’s career, he rarely had a nice work to say about any of his opponents. Although the majority of his trash talks have been based around money, back in 2007 the American boxer made fun of his opponents (Ricky Hatton) physical physique despite both boxers being unbeaten at the time. Mayweather’s words may have given him the upper hand however as the American went on to continue his unbeaten record with a win.
“I’M GOING TO GIVE VARGAS THE CHANCE TO CASH HIS LAST PAYCHECK. I WOULD LIKE TO SAY PUBLICLY THAT FATTY VARGAS HAS ALWAYS FEARED ME. I CONCEDED TO TAKE THIS FIGHT AT 162 POUNDS BECAUSE FATTY COULDN’T LOSE ANY MORE WEIGHT. I WILL DO VARGAS A FAVOR BY RETIRING HIM IN THIS FIGHT SO HIS FAMILY DOESN’T HAVE TO SUFFER EVERY TIME HE STEPS IN THE RING. I’M GOING TO DO HIS WIFE A FAVOR AND NOT LET HER CRY ANYMORE.”
- Ricardo Mayorga before his fight against Fernando Vargas
Ricardo Mayorga may not be a household name, but every boxing fan knows exactly who he is. Most boxers try and maintain a good balance between their trash talking and their boxing ability. However Mayorga has taken his trash-talking abilities to the extreme and focuses on destroying his opponents with words outside of the ring instead of fighting in the ring – the quote above being one of the most brutal trash-talks he has ever given, or anyone has given.
I’M NOT THE GREATEST; I’M THE DOUBLE GREATEST. NOT ONLY DO I KNOCK ‘EM OUT, I PICK THE ROUND.”
- Muhammad Ali
In terms of the number of trash talking quotes, Muhammad Ali definitely is in the lead and has some of the most memorable ones as well. Although this quote may not seem like a trash talk, the confidence which Ali had about his ability to say this definitely got into the head of all of his opponents.