T Nation

James Toney - The Master Counterpuncher


I love this video. It highlights just what a fantastic counter puncher Toney is/was. Everyone jawbones about mayweather's ability to avoid taking damage with shoulder rolling and parries, but this to me is the man who defines it.

Toney is such an interesting character too, never have I see a man who can approach fighting and be so goddamn calm about it. Even at heavyweight with hurting bombs coming his direction, he still looks so relaxed about letting it slide off his shoulder or slapping the punch off course.

I'm not usually a fan of shit-talkers, but Toney is hilarious. I still can't decide if he's actually truly believes the stuff that comes out of his mouth, or if it's just pure bravado.


His shoulder roll is a thing of beauty.


Just a fantastic level of skill to avoid and minimise taking damage from incoming punches. Always absolutely loved his fighters mindset and how he backed up the talk.

Edit: after just watching that video again the thing that stands out to me is the level of composure he has when in close. He never gets flustered and always looks absolutely calm in the midst of chaos. That's the sign of a great athlete to me (ie Federer as an example always seemed to have more time than his opponent) and Toney has it in spades.


that fight against jirov was beastly.


On a side note, I've just seen the shoulder roll used very successfully in an Amateur fight.

13 punches and only 2 of them landed. I'd like to use the roll, and have done so to great success in sparring, but I'm not game enough to use it in an actual fight because the judges in my area are fucking retarded.


Shitttt that was slick for a young buck, lookin good.