For a boxer to go undefeated in 45 fights in today’s world would earn him a spot in the GOAT conversation today. However, for Harry Greb it was just a normal year’s work. You read that right, the Pittsburgh native, had done what Floyd Mayweather nearly took an entire career to in just a span of 365 days.
To make this accomplishment stand out even more, Greb was not beating your average Joe picked from the street block but seasoned boxers co considered to be among the best of their times. Adding on to this already outrageous feat, Greb did these things across the Welterweight, Middleweight, and Light Heavyweight divisions standing only at 5’8 inches tall.
Greb had already started fighting in his locality before he hit 20 years of age in the year 1913, with a few of his initially notable bouts being against Hall Of Famer Tommy Gibbons and reigning Welterweight champion, George Chip.
1917 showed us a brief glimpse into what the future held for him where he fought 37 times, winning 34 including having victories over future champions and then contenders including Battling Levinsky, Jack Dillon and Willie Meehan.
Harry Greb almost matched Floyd Mayweather’s career record in less than a Year
Following this he went on to serve in the US Navy for a short while, causing a slight pause in his in-ring career. After returning from his conscription and marrying his then-girlfriend, Greb embarked on what would be the most historic year of his life.
Starting in January against Leo Houck, Harry Greb went on to fight accomplished opposition one after the other, winning every single time. In the month of January alone he had 5 fights to his name, often spaced only 3 days apart from each other.
Throughout the year he’d average about 4-5 fights a month and win all of them. Most of these fights lasted the entire 10-12 round distance and were spaced 4-5 days apart from each other. The sheer toughness and elite recovery required to accomplish this feat cannot be understated. He’d go on to fight multiple times in every month, except October (where he had a single fight) in 1919.
His rate of activity combined with the accomplishments attached to his name undeniably make Harry Greb a boxing great. Though he is a natural welterweight, even today he is regarded as one of the greatest middleweight fighters of all time.
Harry Greb decided to retire young due to his vision problems caused by years of battles and added trauma from multiple car crashes. He sadly passed away at the age of 32 due to a medical procedure gone wrong. In his mighty career, he had 299 fights to his name, winning nearly 261 of them.