What does it take to be considered one of the best MuayThai fighters?

Discussion in 'Muay Thai and Kickboxing' started by Julius_Caesar, Dec 8, 2018.

  1. Julius_Caesar

    Julius_Caesar Brown Belt

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    First thing that pops into my head is a fighter that's ranked highly in the main stadiums like Lumpinee and Rajadamnern but now days isn't it a little more complicated?

    You have fighters who do well in the stadiums but not so much internationally based off a number of things. Over the years the stadiums have been influenced by the gamblers and even guys like Samart have come out and said its different to how it was in the golden era. International muaythai promotions CAN be judged differently and the pacing is also different. Its almost like comparing Olympic level amateur boxing with pro boxing. If a boxer has a successful amateur career and doesn't do as well as a pro is someone else who wasn't as successful as an amateur but did better as a pro considered better than him?

    For example if someone like Petchboonchu lost to a foreign fighter in Onefc under full muaythai rules is that foreign fighter considered better than him even after all Petchboonchus success in the stadiums?

    Another example you have 2 Thai's. Superlek and Panpayak. Both compete at the highest of levels in the stadiums and have beaten each other but Panpayak tends to get the better of him for the majority of the time yet Superlek does better internationally. He can adapt better to a variety of styles under different types of muaythai pacing and judging. From an aggressive heavy handed foreign fighter to a slick thai in the stadiums he shows an overall consistency whilst other fighters like Panpayak may do well in one area but not as well in the other. (This is only for arguments sake. Neither Panpayak or Superlek have had enough international fights for me to compare how effective they are internationally)

    There are still a load of mismatches but its a lot more common now days to see foreign nakmuays beat thai's so not sure if its as simple as pointing at someone who's doing well in the stadiums as being one of the best even tho that should still be rated highly.

    Guys like Yodsanklai, Saenchai, (maybe Yodwicha and Superlek) have shown that all round consistency. Yodsanklai had his fair share of losses in the stadiums yet he was still at an elite level and transitioned successfully. Fought a lot of mismatches but has also won some good fights. He even went into kickboxing and found success where others cant. What does that say about him compared to others? And I do understand opportunity plays a big part. Many thai's out there dont get the opportunity to compete but now days we're starting to see quite a few thai's transitioning back and forth in their primes.

    What do you think it takes to be considered one of the best muaythai fighters?
     
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  2. Snubnoze707

    Snubnoze707 High Level

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    You have to do well in Kickboxing to be the best Muay Thai fighter IMO.

    @jtwarwagon4life can you chime in?
     
  3. jtwarwagon4life

    jtwarwagon4life Green Belt

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    Last edited: Dec 8, 2018
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  4. Mafanofe

    Mafanofe Black Belt

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    being regular on the big stadiums fighting the best of his divisions
     
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  5. jtwarwagon4life

    jtwarwagon4life Green Belt

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    Until thais start have more than 1 international fight for ever 20 fights they have in the stadiums, not even taking into account level of competition, age, weight, etc., I'd say international fights are just a nice way to make money which should have next to no bearing on a fighters legacy.
     
  6. jtwarwagon4life

    jtwarwagon4life Green Belt

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    You can't even really look at head to head result, solely in terms of wins and losses, when accessing two fighters.

    For example, I believe that Namkabuan and Sakmongkol fought 6 times with 3 wins apiece. So superficially it looks like neither of them got the better of the other head to head. However, if you dig deeper, you see that Sakmongkol enjoyed huge weight advantages in some of those fights (5lbs to 10lbs) and still lost one of the fights. So this says much more about Namkabuan's greatness than Sakmongkol's.

    And we can find similar examples from Saenchai's career. Namsaknoi and Nopparat beat him head to head, but no educated fan thinks that they're actually better.
     
    Last edited: Dec 8, 2018
  7. Julius_Caesar

    Julius_Caesar Brown Belt

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    Yeah because that's exactly what I said.
     
  8. Cocakillbana

    Cocakillbana Black Belt

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    You're exaggerating this.

    Collectively, a good Thai loses far less often when fighting outside of the stadiums than they do in the stadiums. This will be the case more times than not even for fighters who aren't doing as well as expected.

    When Serena Williams or Roger Federer lose to the 70th ranked player, is that player suddenly better? Of course not. It's almost a given that the best athletes and teams will lose to competition they're supposed to beat. This doesn't lessen their greatness, nor does does it make the inferior competitor an equal. They're still the best because of consistent results against others who are among the best.
     
    Last edited: Dec 9, 2018
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  9. Kanka

    Kanka Brown Belt

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    It's all subjective but for me to be one of the best muay thai fighters probably means you have to be really skilled and have great results? I'd consider Yodlekpet, Rungkit and Tawanchai the best muay thai fighters right now.

    To be one of the best standup fighter is even more subjective, but i'd say it required you are succesful in multiple standup sports, wether it be muay thai, kickboxing, mma, boxing etc.
     
  10. Kanka

    Kanka Brown Belt

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    Lol, superlek just fought 3 non thais and none of them were even close to his level. At 130 lbs there are too few good non-thais.To make it competitive thais would have to move up to 143+ Lbs
     
    Last edited: Dec 9, 2018
  11. Blowing Dixie

    Blowing Dixie Yellow Belt

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    You have to have a Thai name.
     
  12. Thugmander

    Thugmander White Belt

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    Someone like Dieselnoi.
    Compete at the highest stadium
    Undefeated
    Fight against the best in the best era
    Beat Samart Payakaroon
    Retire because there was nobody left to fight
    Fights overseas and still dominates
    Won fighter of the year award 1982.
     
  13. Thugmander

    Thugmander White Belt

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    Also a guy who that no one ever really talks about is Orono
    WMC Champion
    Lumpinee Champion
    Thailand Champion
    Won fights against:
    Buakaw
    Singdam in his prime
    KO Yodsanklai... twice...
    Saenchai in his prime
    Lerdsila in his prime
    Beat everyone in the fairtex gym: Kaew, Yod, Teelek, Attachai.

     
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  14. BigPapaShango

    BigPapaShango Green Belt

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    This answer was so well structured until you brought Saenchai into it, especially rubbishing his comparison with Namsaknoi.

    Namsaknoi has one of the highest win percentages of all time along with one of the longest reigns at lumpinee. Saenchai is a great advocate of Muay Thai to the world and he is without doubt one of the best to showcase Muay Thai but to consider him as the greatest I believe to be an oversight...
     
  15. Cocakillbana

    Cocakillbana Black Belt

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    Any great fighter from Thailand can have just about whatever record they want.

    280-15-5 would mean he never lost until he got to the stadiums (about 200 fights) and won about 80% of his stadium fights.
     
    Last edited: Dec 18, 2018
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  16. jtwarwagon4life

    jtwarwagon4life Green Belt

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    No one knows what the "highest winning percentage" among thais is because record keeping is so incomplete.

    Having a long title reign means nothing, if you only have to defend your title once in a blue moon.

    People who cite "statistics" like this could probably be persuaded into believing that Wanheng Menayothin is the boxing goat.
     
  17. BigPapaShango

    BigPapaShango Green Belt

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    the point i was making was that considering Saenchai as the greatest due to his popularity and rubbishing the likes of namsaknoi is foolish.

    With regards to statistics, how else are we to determine the best in era, or at all in fact? Base it solely on head to head, or solely on opinion?
     
  18. BigPapaShango

    BigPapaShango Green Belt

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    To a certain point I would agree, until they start to fight for more recognised promotions and in the stadiums.
     
  19. Julius_Caesar

    Julius_Caesar Brown Belt

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    I think this is what I should of titled this thread. Best standup fighter. MuayThai seems a bit too specific.
     
  20. Snubnoze707

    Snubnoze707 High Level

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    Saenchai isn't just cited for popularity, he's had a 20 year run as a top level Nakmuay. He won his first Lumpinee title in 1997 and just got out of the stadiums in 2014 and is currently riding a 41 fight win streak since then in the twilight of his career. Also 2x Sports Writer FOTY with a decade between the awards.

    Namsaknoi deserves recognition but not at the expense of Saenchai.
     

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