Will Oscar and Tito Overshadow Calzaghe at IBHOF Induction?
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Will Oscar and Tito Overshadow Calzaghe at IBHOF Induction?
By Ken Hissner, Doghouse Boxing (Jan 18, 2014)

Joe Calzaghe, Oscar De La Hoya, Felix Tito Trinidad - Image by icheehuahua, Doghouse Boxing Inc.
Shadow Image created by © Chee, Doghouse Boxing
You can even tell by the title that using the first names of Oscar and Tito boxing fans know that’s Oscar “Golden Boy” De La Hoya, 39-6 (30), and Felix “Tito” Trinidad, 42-3 (35). But if the name Joe was put in it could mean any great Joe. Calzaghe posted a 46-0 (32) as the “Pride of Wales” and “the Italian Dragon” making 21 title defenses winning the vacant WBO Super middleweight title in October of 1997 over Chris Eubank, 45-2-2. This year all 3 get inducted into the IBHOF.

Prior to winning the WBO title in his 14th fight Calzaghe won the BBBofCBritish title and made but 1 defense in his 16th fight. In his 23rd fight he won the WBO title. In his 6th defense he defeated American Omar Shieka, 20-1, in August of 2000. In April of 2001 he defeated German Mario Veit, 30-0. Veit in 2003 won the EBU title and in 2004 the interim WBO title making 2 defenses before gaining a rematch in GER losing to Calzaghe in May of 2005 and was 45-1. It was only the 2nd time Calzaghe fought outside the UK. Calzaghe defeated current WBC champion Sakio Bika, 20-1-2, in October of 2006.

It wasn’t until June of 2003 that Calzaghe suffered his first knockdown before dropping and defeating former WBA champion American Byron Mitchell, 25-2-1, in the same 2nd round. In his 32nd fight he defeated American Will McIntyre, 29-2, in Denmark which marked the first time Calzaghe fought outside of the UK. In his next fight he defeated former IBF champion American Charles Brewer, 37-8.

In Calzaghe’s 18th defense he unified the WBO and the IBF titles defeating Jeff Lacy, 21-0, the IBF champion. In November of 2007 he added the WBC title defeating Mikkel Kessler, 39-0 as he made his 21st and final defense of the WBO title. He only made 1 defense of the IBF title.

In Calzaghe’s last 2 fights he moved up to light heavyweight and defeated former world champions Bernard Hopkins, 48-4-1, in April of 2008 in Las Vegas, NV, and in his final fight defeated Roy Jones, Jr., 52-4, in November of 2008, at MSG, NY.

One of the opponents Calzaghe never had the opportunity to meet was German Sven Ottke who won the IBF title from Brewer in 1998 and made his final defense in March of 2004 it being his 21st. He added the WBA Super title defeating Mitchell in 2003. He ended his career 34-0 (6), and never fought out of Germany.

It is this writer’s opinion that Calzaghe being of Italian decent didn’t want to equal or pass the still standing record of American Italian Rocky Marciano’s 49-0 record. Only 3 fighters went beyond 49-0 with all being defeated before their final retirement. With a record like this you would think he would stand head and shoulders over both De La Hoya and Trinidad since Hopkins defeated both of them. Trinidad won the IBF welterweight title and in his 15th defense defeated WBC champion De La Hoya. He made 1 more defense of the IBF title. In his next fight after De La Hoya he won the WBA light middleweight title and made 2 defenses before winning the WBA middleweight title.

Trinidad would lose in his 41st fight for the first time trying to capture Hopkins 3 titles. After winning his next 2 fights he lost to Winky Wright and in his final fight to Jones after nearly 3 years out of the ring. He had made 15 defenses of his IBF welterweight title and gained the WBC title defeating De La Hoya. He won and had 2 defenses of his WBA light middleweight title before losing to Hopkins. He had 17 defenses.

De La Hoya won the WBO super featherweight title and made 1 defense. He then gained the WBO lightweight title making 6 defenses. He won the WBC super lightweight title defeating Julio Cesar Chavez, 96-1-1, and made 1 defense in his next fight defeating Miguel Angel Gonzalez, 41-0.

De La Hoya won the WBC welterweight title defeating Pernell Whitaker, 40-1-1, and made 7 defenses. He won the WBC light middleweight title and made 2 defenses. Then won the WBO middleweight title and later re-gained the WBC light middleweight title making 1 defense being his 18th overall.

Trinidad won titles in 3 different weight classes while De La Hoya won titles in 6 different weight classes. All of Calzaghe’s defenses were in the same weight class.

Joe Calzaghe 46-0, 32 KO’s - 21 defenses.
Felix 'Tito' Trinidad 42-3, 35 KO’s - 17 defenses.
Oscar De La Hoya 39-6, 30 KO’s - 18 defenses.

Calzaghe fighting his last 2 fights in the US, 1 ea in Scotland, DK and GER gave him little exposure to the US fans. He fought 17 times in Wales and 24 times in the UK. De La Hoya never fought outside of the US. Trinidad fought 18 times in PR, 23 in US, 2 in MEX, 1 ea FR and IT. Will Calzaghe be over shadowed or get his just dues? YOU be the judge!

Ken Hissner responds to all his emails at: kenhissner@gmail.com

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