Monday, March 27, 2023  |



The best of all time A to Z: Yarosz


This is the 25th in a 26-part series in which endeavors to name the best boxers of all time based on last name – A to Z. We’ll post one letter each day for 26 days. Our criteria in making the selections were fairly simple: Accomplishments in the ring, with heavy emphasis on strength of opposition, as well as impact on the sport. This wasn’t easy, as our first installment — the letter “A” (Armstrong vs. Ali) — demonstrates. However, we’re confident that our choices are arguably the best. We also are including five more fighters for each letter to indicate others who were considered. Also, noted author and boxing historian Bert Sugar — who provided input — tells us where he ranks our choices among the greatest fighters pound-for-pound and gives us a thought on each selection. And, finally, we’d love to get your thoughts on the project. Here goes ÔǪ today’s letter: “Y.”

Lifespan: 1901-81
Hometown: Pittsburgh
Record: 106-18-3 (16 knockouts)
Active: 1929-42
Weight class: Welterweight through light heavyweight
Titles: World middleweight
Sugar’s ranking: None
The thought process: Yarosz was always destined to become a boxer. The handsome son of Polish immigrants was from the boxing-rich Pittsburgh area, which produced such greats as Harry Greb, Billy Conn, Charley Burley and Fritzie Zivic, and he comes from a boxing family. He had four brothers who also practiced the sweet science, including middleweight and light heavyweight contender Tommy Yarosz. None made it as big as Teddy, who didn’t have much power but was a smart, skillful boxer with an excellent left jab and granite chin. He was stopped only once, by Babe Risko when he had to quit because of a broken knee cap. He went 58-0-1 before losing for the first time and held the world middleweight title in 1934-35, taking it from Vince Dundee and losing it to Risko by a unanimous decision after re-injuring his knee in a rematch. He never again fought for a championship but continued to win consistently, often against elite opponents. Among those who Yarosz defeated were Hall of Famers Lou Brouillard, Billy Conn and Archie Moore. He also beat such elite fighters as Risko (in a third fight), Solly Kreiger, Pete Latzo, Ken Overlin and Lloyd Marshall. That’s an impressive list of victims, impressive enough that it can be argued he was the best middleweight of the 1930s. Yarosz was enshrined in the International Boxing Hall of Fame in 2006.
Five more (alphabetical order): Yasuei Yakushiji, Hiroki Yoshino, Jimmy Young, Myung-Woo Yuh and Dong-Kyun Yum.
Sugar quote: “Yarosz fought all of the top people of his era. He had no punch at all but he fought every middleweight out there. Yarosz was a tough guy.”

A: Armstrong:

B: Burley:

C: Charles:

D: Duran:

E: Elorde:

F: Foreman:

G: Greb:

H: Hagler:

I: Ibeabuchi:

J: Johnson:

K: Ketchel:

L: Louis:

M: Moore:

N: Napoles:

O: Olivares:

P: Pep:

Q: Qawi:

R: Robinson:

S: Saddler:

T: Tunney:

U: Uzcudun:

V: Villa:

W: Walker:

X: Alfredo Xeque: