10 Best Boxers With the Shortest Reach in History

We are all born with different physical qualities and proportions. If we apply this to combat sports such as boxing, we get fighters with physical advantages and disadvantages. Short stature can be a problem for fighters, but only if they allow it themselves. There have been many fighters with short stature, but they have managed to adapt and make it their weapon of choice.

Danny Garcia (68.5”)

Danny Oscar Garcia was born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. 1988 and has Puerto Rican roots. He was introduced to boxing by his father, also a boxer, and Danny donned the gloves when he was only ten years old. As an amateur, Garcia achieved 107 wins with 13 losses and won the Tammer Tournament and Under-19 national champion in 2005.

The following year, Danny also won the U.S. national championship. Danny turned professional in 2007 and opened his career with a knockout in the first round, continuing the knockout streak in the next four matches, and remained undefeated until 2016. He is an active competitor and the winner of titles in two categories: WBC in welterweight and WBA, and WBC and The Ring in super-lightweight.

Danny competes at light welterweight, welterweight, and light middleweight. Garcia’s record is 37 wins with 21 knockouts and only three losses. His 68.5″ reach played a crucial role in fights across the different weight classes and gave him the edge in many fights. His reach was an important factor in his fighting style and strategic approaches to each match, and he used it effectively in the ring to generally emerge victorious.

Julio Cesar Chavez (68”) 

Julio Cesar Chavez Gonzalez was born in 1962 in Obergon, Sonara, Mexico. He found his motivation in boxing to help his family financially. He started boxing as an amateur at the age of 16. After Julio amassed a modest record of 14 wins and one loss, he turned professional. Cesar debuted in 1980, and his career lasted 25 years, during which he achieved 107 wins, 86 knockouts, and six losses.

Cesar competed in categories from super featherweight to welterweight, where he won the titles in super lightweight with WBC and IBF titles, lightweight with WBA, WBC, and The Ring titles, and in super featherweight, where he won the WBC belt. Chavez has 27 saves with 21 knockouts, and his 68″ reach was decorated with accurate and powerful punches.

Julio’s short reach had no impact on the outcome of his matches, and he was often shorter than his opponents. That didn’t stop him from securing a place among the best boxers in the history of the sport and earning his place in the International Boxing Hall of Fame in 2010.

Manny Pacquiao (67”) 

Manny Pacquiao was born in 1978 in Kibawe, Bukidnon, Philippines, and is considered one of the greatest boxers in history. He found his motivation for a boxing career in the desire to help himself and his parents escape poverty. As an amateur, PacMan balanced hard physical work and competitions, impaling his record to 60 wins and four losses.

Manny entered the professional ring for the first time in 1995 and is still there. Even though he is busy with other things, he is always willing to return against a quality opponent for a high price. It is important to note that in 26 years, Pacquiao achieved 62 wins, eight losses, and two draw matches, and he held 13 world titles in as many as eight categories, from flyweight to super-welterweight.

Although his reach was 67″, which could have been a problem for him in larger divisions against longer opponents, Manny overcame physical disadvantages with his superior skillset and strategic approach to fighting. PacMan’s speed, footwork, and adaptability were the things that ultimately led him to victory, no matter how big the opponent was in front of him. With that, he proved that boxing is primarily a game of the brain and not just the body.

Juan Diaz (67”)

Juan “Baby Bull” Diaz was born in 1983 in Houston, Texas. In his amateur days, Diaz won 13 national gold medals, two silvers, and four World Championships, finishing his amateur career with 105 wins and five losses. After solid amateur foundations in 2000, he entered professional waters with a knockout in the first round, and the next four opponents fell under the force of his punches, most often in the first rounds.

His 16-year-long career is filled with 42 wins, 21 knockouts and four losses. Juan was a light welterweight competitor, but in lightweight, he won the WBA, IBF, and IBO titles with a total of seven defenses. Diaz is known for his muscular build that matched his aggressive boxing style. Juan had a relatively short reach of 67″ against his opponents.

His strategy was to close the distance, relying on close-range pressure and quick footwork. Diaz possessed a quality skill set, and his incredible combativeness and warrior spirit highlighted his boxing personality and tendency to neutralize his reach advantage in many fights to emerge victorious. He ended his career without a single title in his possession but on a six-fight winning streak, retiring as a winner.

Henry Armstrong (67”)

Henry Jackson Jr. was born in 1912 in Columbus, Mississippi, U.S., and died in Los Angeles in 1988 at 75. However, his legacy will live on forever through his boxing achievements. Armstrong competed at featherweight, lightweight, welterweight, and middleweight and won The Ring titles in all categories except middleweight.

Although he started his career with a knockout loss in 1931, Henry fought for 14 years with an incredible 152 wins, 100 knockouts, 22 losses, and nine draws. Hurricane Hank, as they called him among many nicknames, defended his titles 19 times, stopping 16 opponents by knockout. He is rightfully high on the list of the greatest boxers of all time and is one of the most active fighters who could do more than 15 matches a year.

With his 67″ reach, Hammerin Hank effectively engaged his opponents by delivering powerful punches using his reach disadvantage to great advantage. He would neutralize opponents regardless of their physical advantages, outmaneuvering and outboxing them, and his ability to adapt to the opponent was incredible. He also secured his place in the International Boxing Hall of Fame.

Rocky Marciano (67”) 

Rocco Francis Machegiano was born in 1923 in Brockton, Massachusetts, USA, and died in 1969 in Newton, Iowa, USA. He started boxing more seriously while serving in the army, where he achieved a record of eight wins and four losses, winning the Amateur Armed Forces boxing tournament in 1946.

The following year, Rocky appeared as a professional boxer for the first time and went undefeated for eight years until the end of his career with a record of 49 wins with 43 knockouts without a single loss. Marciano was a heavyweight contender with an unusually short reach of 67″ who adapted to his fighting style so well that in 1952, Marciano won the NYSAC, NBA, and The Ring heavyweight titles, which he successfully defended seven times against taller opponents by the end of his career.

Rocky is known for his relentlessness and pressure, with constant forward movement forcing his opponents to crack like glass under pressure and his powerful punches. It is important to note that he is the only heavyweight fighter who said goodbye to the sport without defeat.

Roberto Duran (66”)

Roberto Duran Samaniego was born in 1951 in El Chorrillo, Panama, known by the aptly named Hands of Stone. He sparred with experienced boxers when he was only eight years old, and as an amateur, he achieved a modest record of 29 wins and three losses. Duran became a professional in 1968 at 16, continuing a good streak of 31 victories without defeat.

He competed professionally for as many as 33 years, scoring 103 wins with 70 knockouts and 16 losses. The fearless Duran competed in eight categories, from super featherweight to light heavyweight, and in four weight classes, Roberto managed to win major world titles such as the WBA, WBC, and The Ring, excelling in four divisions.

Mike Tyson said that he looked up to his fighting style while growing up, which he personally applied, and their common points were exceptional skills, an aggressive fighting style, and a short reach. Duran favored entering close range, where he acted quickly with an aggressive style, neutralizing bigger and longer opponents. However, Duran found his advantages in this and used them as strengths to become famous as one of the greatest boxers in the history of the sport.

Vasiliy Lomachenko (65”)

Vasiliy Anatolyevich Lomachenko was born in 1988 in Bilhorod-Dnistrovskyi, Ukrainian SSR, Soviet Union. He was introduced to boxing by his father, who encouraged him to go to dance training to develop his legendary footwork, which he is known for today. An impressive amateur score of 396 wins and only one loss, Vasiliy won three golds at the World Championships, two at the European Championships, and two at the Olympic Games. 

Known as “Matrix” due to his mysterious fighting style, he has been performing as a professional since 2013, and so far, he has 17 wins, 11 knockouts, and only three losses. Vasy is a featherweight and super-featherweight competitor who was crowned with the WBO title and a lightweight, where he won the WBA, WBO, WBC, and The Ring titles with ten defenses.

The Ukrainian is known for his agility, incredible moves, and exceptional boxing skills that make him a hard opponent to hit, and his 65″ reach has proven to be no problem in his pursuit of fame. His abilities in the ring have attracted attention and are a frequent topic for boxing analysts. Since he’s still active, we can expect more of “Matrix.”

Gary Russell Jr. (64”)

Garry Allen Russell Jr. was born in 1988 in Washington, D.C., U.S. Even in his amateur days, Garry showed his prosperity with 163 wins and ten losses, winning the Golden Gloves and the National Championship twice in a row, and he also finished third at the World Championship.

He opened his professional career with a knockout in 2009 and is still active. Until his last fight in 2022, Garry had amassed 31 wins with 18 knockouts and two losses. Russell Jr. is a featherweight competitor who managed to win the WBC title after 27 matches and defend it five times before losing in 2022.

Although Garry reached 64,” his well-rounded boxing skills and mental toughness are enough to overcome that disadvantage. His unorthodox defense with aggressive pressure and a heavy arsenal of punches left many of his opponents reeling, especially with his effective volume of punches. Garry is a relatively young fighter whose career and fans are waiting for his return, and there is no doubt that he will come back better in the future and have a brilliant career.

Carl Frampton (62”) 

Carl “Brick Fists” Frampton was born in Northern Ireland in the area of Tigers Bay, Belfast, in 1987. He is one of the most successful amateur fighters from the Irish region, and he won the silver medal at the EU Championship in Dublin in 2007. Carl has been trained in boxing since he was 11 years old, and he built his amateur career with 114 wins and 11 losses until he finally turned pro in 2009.

His career was short but effective and lasted 12 years. During that time, “The Jackal,” as he was also called, achieved 28 wins with 16 knockouts and three losses and retired in 2021. He competed through four divisions, from super-bantamweight to lightweight, winning the WBA featherweight title and the WBA and IBF super-bantamweight titles with three title defenses.

Known for his exceptional boxing ability, Carl had a relatively short reach of 62″, which did not prevent him from developing his fighting style with a focus on precision strikes and footwork to close the distance of larger opponents. Carl is one of the better examples of a fighter with a short reach who managed to achieve great boxing results and retired after, as we said, a short but solid career.

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Gregori Povolotski

I have been practicing martial arts since 2007. For as long as I can remember, I have always had a huge passion for combat sports, especially Muay Thai and boxing. Helping people on their martial arts journey is what drives me to keep training and learn new things. Read More About Me

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