I Have Now Watched Every JLB Fight There Is...

Discussion in 'Muay Thai and Kickboxing' started by TRYHARD 2001, Aug 28, 2018.

  1. TRYHARD 2001

    TRYHARD 2001 Silver Belt

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    And I have to say that in his prime he was a true force of nature. Before Hoost shattered his forearm he was without a doubt in my mind the hardest hitting HW striker from any sport that I've ever seen. Forget Tyson, Shavers, Foreman, Manhoef, and Badr Hari, JLB's hands were more powerful (he wasn't a better boxer than them, though). When he landed clean with either the straight left or the right hook (I still feel that was his best punch) NO ONE just walked through that, including a young Hunto. Absolute dynamite in dem hands.

    But to categorize him as a box-first kickboxer isn't accurate at all. His kicks were amazing, particularly his lead leg low kick that seemed to land with the force of a baseball bat and rendered so many opponents helpless. His strength in the clinch was beyond anyone in K1 and his cardio was severely underrated and allowed him to pursue his aggressive style so effectively.

    His chin was nothing great, though far from glass, and with that aggressive style he left himself open to some monster KO's but the man's greatness can not be denied. When he was doing his thing in K1 he was easily the most popular HW in the promotion, too. The Japanese used to go bonkers when he came out to O Fortuna and I can only imagine he made enough cash there that he didn't need to fight as long as he did, he did it because he truly loved it.

    IMO, he's not the kickboxing GOAT, but he's Top 5 for sure and in his prime he was more than capable of beating any man that's ever competed in a combat sport. It's important to remember the warriors that made pro kickboxing so entertaining for so long and JLB was the epitome of the all-action kickboxer.
     
  2. Broadcast

    Broadcast Black Belt

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    He was not using his legs so much, so definitely not top 5 all of time because of that and his record (Hoost KOed him several times, Aerts knocked him out too).
     
  3. TRYHARD 2001

    TRYHARD 2001 Silver Belt

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    He used a ton of leg and body kicks. Also, he finished Hoost several times and nearly killed Aerts. He also finished Hunto long before that was the thing to do, lamped Greco, almost killed Filho, soundly defeated Choi, etc. The guy was as legit as it gets as a HW kickboxer, even if he never won the GP.
     
  4. prikoke

    prikoke Brown Belt

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    Maybe you should watch the fights of Tyson, Shavers etc. JLB hit hard, but nowhere near as hard as those guys.
     
  5. Tayski

    Tayski Stand-up Fighting

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    He's also a very humble guy, always giving other fighters a lot of respect and making fun of his own losses or defects.

    ps: I'm thinking of also doing a similar marathon but with Buakaw's fights :)
     
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  6. Bluesbreaker

    Bluesbreaker Black Belt

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    He has to be the best to never win a Heavyweight GP.
     
  7. Escabar

    Escabar Brown Belt

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    I always felt Mike Bernardo was a harder hitter, I wonder what common opponents say like Aerts and co.
     
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  8. TRYHARD 2001

    TRYHARD 2001 Silver Belt

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    I have and no they didn't hit as hard as him. Believe me when I say that I have watched and participated in a wide variety of combat sports and never in my life have I witnessed any one with the kind of pop he had before Hoost shattered his arm. People focus on his "Lightning Left", but he was actually a natural Orthodox fighter and the right hook he threw off of the left straight is the most devastating single punch I've ever seen. Again, Shavers, Foreman, and Tyson were monster punchers and to a large extent this comparing of punching power talk is purely subjective and open to interpretation and personal bias, but for me it is simply not possible to hit another human being harder than LeBanner did to Don Frye.

    Not gonna say JLB was the best kickboxer of all time because that's not true, but he was one of the best and in my eyes he was absolutely the hardest hitting HW of all-time... in my eyes anyway.
     
  9. Them Bones

    Them Bones White Belt

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    Saying Le Banner hit harder than Tyson, and especially Shavers and Foreman is a pretty ridiculous thing to say, i think. I don't know if he even qualifies as a huge puncher let alone an all time great puncher. All those guys mentioned would have put an old, tiny Nokweed to sleep with even a glancing blow, Le Banner didn't even remotely hurt him and he landed plenty of punches over the 5 rounds.

    While there have definitely been guys that come from the kick fighting world (pardon that phrase) who have actually proven themselves to be massive punchers in the boxing world, i think you're more in the 'Conor has the touch of death... coz mma, brah' area with this one.

    No offense intended though, mate. But i do think that this one is pretty far fetched, sorry.
     
  10. lukeuidswords

    lukeuidswords Brown Belt

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    By far.
     
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  11. TRYHARD 2001

    TRYHARD 2001 Silver Belt

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    So you don't even think JLB is a big puncher at all now? How many of his fights have you seen? You use an early, early fight of his against a tough as nails Thai boxer who he absolutely did not land cleanly on at any point as your sole piece of evidence for this? Nokweed Devy was an absolute beast and the fact that he was outweighed by 100 pounds and didn't get KO'd is far more of a tribute to his ridiculous toughness than a criticism of JLB's power. You say that those three boxers would have flatlined him with a glancing blow... based on what exactly? I disagree with you. See how easy that was?

    You seem to be knowledgeable on pro kickboxing so I feel obliged to ask you how a guy that KO'd prime Hoost, Greco, Aerts, Filho, and TKO'd prime Hunto would not even be a certified power puncher? Never mind all the other stoppage victories, let's just focus on those for now.


    And for the love of all that is holy, please do not ever lump me in with McGregor nuthuggers, I'm so much better than that.
     
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  12. bjpenngoat

    bjpenngoat Red Belt

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    JLB is an all.time fan favorite and was a great fighter but in no way is he a top 5 or even a top 10 he. He may not even be a top 15 to be honest but a great fighter who fought in the golden era of hw kick boxing against the greatest guys ever.
     
  13. PolarBearPaulVarelans

    PolarBearPaulVarelans Purple Belt

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    As someone who was a boxer and watched all these guys extensively, JLB certainly had excellent power, but to compare him to guys like Tyson, Shavers, or Foreman is silly, as those last three were on a completely different level.

    I appreciate and respect JLB and the skills he brought to the table, but to be completely honest, I was never a big fan back in the day. I'm also not surprised he never won the GP, either.

    LeBanner was a guy with power in both hands with good, technical punches, and yes, underrated kicks. But his handspeed was unimpressive and he lacked many technical skills, beginning with his movement and how relatively easy he was to hit.

    On any given day, he could knock out anyone, but it's not surprising that the more skilled and much smaller Peter Aerts has a 3-1 record against him, and even Hoost, who he matches up well against because of how willing Hoost is to eat punches, is 3-2 against him. His style also wasn't ideal for longevity, as he was well past his prime by his early 30's.

    Great kickboxer? Sure. Top 5? Not even close. Hell, I don't think there is a credible argument for him being top 5 among heavyweight kickboxers.

    Aerts and Hoost were better from his own era, and while less than a year younger, Semmy Schilt was much better and routinely dominated Le Banner with ease when JLB wasn't that far past his best. (But then again, Semmy was also past his prime for those fights, as his best years were spent in MMA) Bonjasky, much as people dislike him, was also better, and Rico Verhoeven and Badr Hari are certainly better from the modern era. That's not even getting into earlier fighters like Andy Hug, or considering some of the guys who were probably at JLB's level of achievement.
     
  14. prikoke

    prikoke Brown Belt

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    I think JLB was far more removed from his prime than Schilt when they fought. I kept thinking prime JLB would have matched well stylistically against Semmy.

    IMO prime JLB (2000-2002) was as good a kickboxer as anybody in K1. But a mix of mistakes and bad luck kept him out of winning the title. (Keep in mind that the best of the best were closely matched, and everybody could beat everybody else on any given day)
     
  15. sparkles

    sparkles Purple Belt

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    Le Banner was a fenomal kickboxer in his prime. In his early years he was a reckless fighter who just went in for the kill. Knock him out or get knocked out. That's also why he was feared. That style sure cost him fight, so he wasn't a smart fighter by no means. His prime come in 2000, 2001 he was too big, 2002 was his year which ended unfortunately with the fracture of his arm. That's what ended his prime at only 30 years of age and cost him at least 3 or 4 prime years as a heavy peaks from 30 to 33 and he kept having issues along the way - even in 2010.

    Two handed KO power, tremendous kicks with both legs and very good offensive boxing technique along with a great style made him fun to watch.

    Someone complains about his handspeed, which was really one of his strong points in my opinion, resulting in unexpected and some of the greatest KO's in K-1 history.

    He was a big guy, thus not the fastest defensively. So every now and then he ran into a counter, especially from right handed fighters.

    In my opinion he's right there with the best K-1 fighters. Aerts his prime ended in 1998, Hoost in 2000, Le Banner his prime began in 2000 and he became an absolute beast in 2002 when the injury occured ...
     
  16. TRYHARD 2001

    TRYHARD 2001 Silver Belt

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    You're welcome to your opinion, but if you can name 14 HW kickboxers that you would put above him I'd love to hear them.
     
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  17. UWanaPlayDaGame

    UWanaPlayDaGame Purple Belt

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    Congratulations to everybody in this thread for getting so close to mindless, silly insult exchanging but still managing to keep it respectable. I was never too big on JLB because I'm just not into fighters that are so reckless defensively. But his fights sure are fun to watch.
     

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