View Full Version : Top 20 Heavyweights of All Time - #19 Sam McVea

12-19-2009, 06:40 AM
Name: Sam McVea/McVey

Born: May 17, 1884
Died: Dec. 23, 1921
Bouts: 97
Won: 63
Lost: 12
Drew: 7
ND: 13
NC: 2
KOs: 48
IBHOF Induction: 1999

GENERALLY REGARDED as one of the best heavyweights of his era, McVey never got to fight for the world title. He was born in Oxnard, California on May 17, 1885. He stood a shade over 5-10, and weighed 200lbs. In his prime, McVey was a hard puncher and possessed fine defensive skills. He turned pro in 1902, and a year later was matched against future heavyweight champ Jack Johnson. Although Johnson won the fight, it went the 20-round limit.

Since few mix-race bouts were made during the era that McVey fought in, most of his opponents were black. He fought fellow Hall of Famers Joe Jeanette and Harry Wills five times apiece and battled Sam Langford 15 times.

McVey's most memorable bout took place April 17, 1909 against Jeannette in Paris. He knocked down Jeannette 27 times and was sent to the deck 11 times himself before he was forced to quit in Round 50, because his eyes had been swollen to the point he could no longer see.

Although McVey seldom fought white fighters and never fought for the title, his exceptional ability, more than his skin color, was the reason. Historians have overlooked the fact that McVey's prime took place during the reign of Jack Johnson (1908-1915). During his reign, Johnson put his title on the line 11 times, but only once, against Jim Johnson in 1914, was his challenger black.

McVey did square off with Johnson in a six-round exhibition in Havana two days before Johnson lost the title to Jess Willard. Johnson, who was six years older than McVey, owned three hard-fought victories over the Californian (W 20, W 20, KO 20). However, all three bouts took place before McVey's 19th birthday.

During his 82-bout career, which lasted from 1902-1920, McVey fought all over the world including, England, Australia, Cuba, Chile and Argentina and amassed a record of 63 wins, 12 losses, 7 draws, 13 no decisions, 2 no contests with 48 knockouts. He died on December 23, 1921 in New York City.

Source: http://www.ibhof.com/pages/about/inductees/oldtimer/mcvey.html


Resume Evaluation:

Notable Wins:
Fred Russell
Kid Carter *Middleweight, but proven against competing Heavyweights
Denver Ed Martin (x3)
Joe Jeannette
Jim Barry (x3) [1st fight prime] [2nd fight post-prime] [3rd fight over the hill]
Al Kubiak
Jim Stewart
Battling Jim Johnson (x6)
George Rodel [Undefeated] [Pre-Prime]
Bill Lang
Sam Langford (x2)
Colin Bell (x2)
Harry Wills (x2)
Sandy Ferguson [Over the hill]
Jeff Clark (x5) [first three prime] [last two post-prime]
Bob Devere
Notable Losses:
Jack Johnson (x3) [PTS 20] [PTS 20] [KO 20] *McVea Green to Pre-Prime, only count last encounter
Denver Ed Martin *McVea Pre-Prime
Joe Jeannette (x2) [NWS 10] [RTD 49] *Given distance of second fight won't count it as a KO pt wise
Sam Langford (x6) [PTS 20] [PTS 20] [TKO 11] [KO 13] [NWS 10] [NWS 10] *Last loss over-hill
Harry Wills (x2) [PTS 12] [KO 5] *McVea Post-prime in KO defeat
Jack Thompson
Questionable Wins:
Questionable Losses:
Sam Langford 1916-04-07

'A' level wins:
Joe Jeannette, Sam Langford (x2), Harry Wills (x2)
'A-' level wins:
Jeff Clark (x3)
'B' level wins:
Denver Ed Martin (x3), Jim Barry I, Al Kubiak, Battling Jim Johnson (x6), Colin Bell (x2), Jeff Clark (x2)
'B-' level wins:
Kid Carter, George Rodel, Jim Barry II, Jim Stewart, Bill Lang, Sandy Ferguson, Bob Devere

Point Total: 8 + 3 + 10 + 3.25 – 19 = 5.25

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12-19-2009, 06:51 AM
Sam McVea vs Sam Langford [NOT Jim Johnson]

Sweet Pea
12-19-2009, 08:25 AM
Excellent stuff. McVea is very underrated.