Throughout history, we have seen boxers show different styles. Every boxer has unique abilities that combine to give them a specific aura. There have been many fighters who have demonstrated great hand and foot speed in their times.
These boxers have used their speed advantage to outsmart and outwork their opponents. They made great champions and cemented their legacies as some of the best to ever step into the ring. Also be sure to check our list of top slowest boxers of all time.
Floyd ‘Money’ Mayweather Jr.
What is there to say about this man? Probably the greatest boxer of all time, Floyd is top 3 on any ‘best of’ list. The 50 and 0 record legend is renowned for his tremendous speed in every aspect possible. His elusive Philly shell defense allowed him to become one of the greatest defensive boxers of all time.
Floyd had a technical approach to boxing, supplemented by his impeccable jab. His speed was fundamental to his success. After years of speculation, he finally faced off against another name on this list – Manny Pacquiao.
He proved his worth against one of the most gifted speedsters of all time and worked his way to a solid decision victory. The legend retired with a perfect record and rightfully became the trademark of the sweet science.
Sugar Ray Leonard
Sugar Ray was one of the best middleweights to ever step into the ring. He fought in a time when the middleweight division was smothered with incredible talent. He fought the likes of Marvelous Marvin Hagler, Tommy ‘The Hitman’ Hearns, and Roberto Duran.
The most impressive thing about it is that Sugar Ray beat all of them. He fought in total wars against Hearns and Duran in some of the best fights of all time. The victory over Hagler was controversial, but Sugar Ray will undoubtedly go down in history as an incredible hall-of-Famer.
Leonard shined in a career fought while there were still fights that lasted 15 rounds.
Roy Jones Jr.
Besides Floyd and Ali, Roy Jones Jr. is among the best boxers. He dominated the pound-for-pound rankings for years. Jones ran through weight divisions as if he was fighting sparring partners. Somehow, the step into a higher weight class never seemed to be a problem.
Jones was not only fast but also showed great power. He possessed immaculate speed. He demonstrated this through perfect reflexes, switching angles, and outsmarting his opponents. Jones found the ideal midway between speed and power, offense and defense.
After a highly successful career in the unpaid ranks, Jones quickly turned pro. He was an excellent fighter. The rest is history, and he truly is one of the iconic speedsters of our time.
One of the greatest boxers of all time was also one of the rare heavyweights with blistering speed. Ali was far from an ordinary heavyweight. He relied on his lightning-fast jab, incredible head movement, and agile footwork to outclass his opponents.
His fighting style was still unknown at the time. Most boxing fans were used more to the powerhouse fighters. The typical George Foreman-type of heavyweights were common. These fighters possessed that one-punch KO power.
Heavyweight fights were slow, far from technical, and never usually lasted long. In part, Ali became a legend because of his unique style. His fights against Sonny Liston and Foreman were textbook examples of a clash between styles.
Ali faced more powerful and bigger opponents. He had to rely on his speed to beat them, precisely what he did. That is why he will go down in history as one of the best to set foot in the ring.
When people think of Mike Tyson, his KO power comes to mind. Rightfully so – Old Mike used to make his opponents hurt so much that they quit on their stool. But one of his most underrated talents was his speed. Speed kills, and Mike was the perfect manifestation of this.
A man who idolized Ali drew inspiration from his idol’s approach to boxing. Under the guidance of the legendary Cus D’Amato, Tyson perfected the peekaboo boxing style. This style allowed him to slip past his opponent’s punches and counter with quick and accurate combinations.
He had blistering hand speed and great power. He utilized head movement and swift footwork to set up his punches. To further confuse his opponents, Tyson also delivered a variety of combinations to the head and the body. His combined strengths made him one of the most ferocious heavyweights of all time.
Zab Judah proved to be one of the most elusive fighters during his career from 1996 to 2019. He was a precise, clever boxer who boasted a different level of speed than fans were used to. He shone during a time when the lighter-weight divisions were overwhelmed with talented fighters.
Like most of the other successful boxers on this list, Judah had a very successful amateur career. His speed was phenomenal and was best displayed in his fight against Floyd Mayweather. It was the ultimate case of speed vs. speed, resulting in a grueling 12-rounder.
Although Judah did not get the result, he proved himself to be one of the greatest speedsters. He will go down in history as a ferocious finisher with a lot of heart and lightning-quick hands.
Prince Naseem Hamed
Prince Naz was a one-of-a-kind fighter. He was flashy and fought with his head down. This requires excellent reflexes and incredible head movement. Prince Naz had no shortage of these. He moved incredibly and could punch from the most difficult angles to catch his opponents lurking.
The champ retired with a record of 36 wins and only one loss. His loss, of course, was at the hands of none other than Marco Antonio Barrera. He scored a total of 31 Kos throughout his career. This career peaked from 1995 to 2000, when Prince Naz held multiple Featherweight titles.
Khan was once upon a time the pride of UK boxing. He was an unorthodox fighter. He was often compared to the likes of Prince Nas due to similarities in their style and because both were renowned speedsters. The thing that separated Khan from other fighters was that he fought everyone.
When politics ruled boxing, Khan took on everyone in his way. Although he did not always get the result, he displayed excellent boxing IQ accompanied by his trademark quick hands. Khan turned pro after a stellar career in the unpaid ranks, where he boasted a record of 101-9. He later turned pro, and from 2009 to 2012, Khan was the unified light-welterweight champion.
Manny ‘Pacman’ Pacquiao was a unique, one-of-a-kind fighter. Only a few boxers have had a more iconic career than the Filipino senator. Manny also won titles against the best of the best across eight different weight classes.
Pacman was a notorious speedster. He also had incredible hand speed. Manny utilized this speed for overwhelming Miguel Cotto, Juan Manuel Marquez, Antonio Margarito, and Erik Morales. A multiple-time world champion, Pacquiao cemented his legacy as one of the best to ever step inside the squared circle.
His speed was best seen during his offensive masterpieces. He had great footwork and could attach from 360 different angles, switch stances and move out again within no time. Pacman attacked with multiple punch combinations and blistering speed. These attacks were almost impossible to defend!
‘Sugar’ Shane Mosley
Sugar Shane is another lightweight forward-slash welterweight that must be mentioned when talking about the fastest fighters of all time. Like most successful fighters, he had a stellar amateur career. Sugar Shane boasted a magnificent amateur record of 250-16 and later turned professional at age 21.
Sugar Shane is rightfully a hall of Famer. He had the perfect combination of speed and power. His superior speed can be seen throughout his fights, particularly in how he dominated Mexican fighter, Tony Margarito.
His amazing foot and hand speed carried him throughout his career. Topped off with an iron chin, Sugar was one of the greatest, well-rounded fighters to step into the ring.
Patterson won the gold medal at the 1952 Olympic Games. The Brooklyn native was one of the fastest heavyweights of all time. The man had a stellar amateur record after working with the legendary master of the peek-a-boo style, Cus D’Amato.
Here is the catch, though, he won it as a middleweight! He moved up to heavyweight as a professional and became the first fighter to hold the heavyweight title twice. Weighing about 185 lbs/ 84kg, Patterson had to find ways to compensate for his lack of size.
Floyd was undoubtedly unconventional, but his unique style and speed allowed him to become one of the best heavyweights ever stepping into the ring. He relied on his incredible hand speed and great defense to outsmart his opponents. He was rightfully inducted into the International Boxing Hall of Fame in 1991.
Sugar Ray Robinson
Sugar Ray Robinson was so much more than just a great boxer. He possessed great skill and was an overall well-balanced fighter. However, you have to give him credit for his speed. He was an icon and an inspiration for money in a time when there was little hope.
He had an incredible career, boasting 201 fights and winning 174. If you want to understand how great Sugar Ray was faithful, note how Ali described him as ‘the king, the master, my idol.’ No ‘best fighter of all time’ list could ever be complete without referring to this legendary fighter somewhere on it.
Besides his perfect technique and ability to move around flawlessly, Sugar Ray was one of the fastest fighters to ever step into the ring!
Pernell ‘Sweet Pea’ Whitaker
One cannot consider the greatest lightweights of all time without talking about Pernell ‘Sweet Pea’ Whitaker. After winning gold at the 1984 Olympics, he turned to the professional ranks to further his boxing career.
Whitaker won six major world titles between 1989 and 1995 and competed in different weight classes. There is only a hand full of fighters who could match his insane foot and hand speed. That is part of the reason why he is often called the greatest defensive fighter of all time.
He was elusive, smart, and could make you miss and pay with ease. His statistics speak of his tremendous speed, mainly because he was among the few fighters to have ever landed 500+ punches in a fight.
Malignaggi was the pinnacle of athleticism and hand speed during his prime. One of the most underrated welterweights on this list. His skill is often overlooked. He managed to find the perfect combination of hand and foot speed to build a well-rounded technique.
Malignaggi turned pro at the age of 20. A record of 44 and 8 speaks of his prowess, with notable wins over fighters such as fellow speedster Zab Judah. In a recent interview with Premier Boxing Champions, Malignaggi described his speed as very particular.
He emphasized that he always tried to combine his speed with preciseness to avoid wasting energy.
Gary Russell Jr.
Gary Russell Jr. is a classy American southpaw who fights in the featherweight division. Early in his career, Russell was a 2008 Olympian and identified as one of the most exciting prospects. After a successful amateur career, he turned to the professional rankings.
As one of the few active fighters on this list, Russell Jr. will look to bounce back from his latest defeat to Mark Magsayo in January 2022. Today he holds an impressive 31-2 record. At one stage in his career, he was the longest-reigning boxing champion during his tenure.
Despite his two losses, he is still one of the fastest fighters in the world today. Russell is a slick mover, and his southpaw stance makes it incredibly difficult for his opponents to catch him. With a lightning jab and blistering combinations, he stands a chance to regain the featherweight title that he held on to for so long.
Willie Pep was one of the most dominating featherweights during the 1940s. He utilized his agile footwork and impressive hand speed to outwork his opponents. Pep came from a difficult childhood when the effects of the Great Depression were still present.
Some people even described his footwork as similar to tap dancing, which speaks to how impressively he moved. He built up one of the most incredible records of all time. He ended a 26-year-long career with a record of 229-11-1. It is important to note that boxers in the past had much bigger fight records than they do now.
In a career in which he boxed almost 2000 rounds, Pep proved to be one of the most elusive speedsters ever. With such incredible achievements, it is no wonder that he is probably the best featherweight of all time.
Hector ‘Macho’ Camacho
The Puerto Rican Professional was one of the most charismatic fighters. He was smooth moved and fought with incredible finesse and speed. He was a trademark flamboyant fighter and was always entertaining to watch. Hector tragically passed away in 2012 after being shot outside a bar.
He moved through three weight divisions, fighting in the feather and lightweight variations. He held titles in all three divisions and retired with an excellent record, losing only six fights in his 88 bouts. His legacy, however, will never be forgotten.
Camacho had a longstanding career, competing in 3 different decades from 1980 to 2010.
Before Taylor turned professional, he built an amateur record that does not fail to impress. Taylor was a two-weight world champion, fighting in the welterweight and light middleweight divisions. Representing the US, Taylor won a gold medal in the 1984 Olympic Games 1984.
He fought as a featherweight then but moved up when he turned professional. He finally retired with a career record of 47 fights, winning 38 of his bouts. His most notable fight was against the legendary Julio Chavez Jr. Their unification bout took place in 1990 in Las Vegas.
In a fight that The Ring later declared the decade’s fight, Taylor built up a steady lead on point over Chavez. Chavez utilized his power and finally knocked Taylor down in the 12th and final round. At this time, Chavez was seemingly invincible.
Taylor got up but did not respond to the referee, asking if he was okay. He stopped the fight with 2 seconds to spare, to hand Chavez the victory.
Out of all of the active fighters that are renowned for their speed, Ryan Garcia deserves mentioning. Under the guidance of former Mexican champion Oscar de la Hoya, Garcia has built up a reputation as an exciting prospect with lightning-fast hands.
Garcia seemingly struggles to find his feet after a spell working with Canelo under Eddy Reynoso. However, he still holds that precious unbeaten record. Garcia is looking to cement himself as one of the best lightweights today.
His fights have been impressive, to say the very least. He uses a sharp check hook and a strong right to break his opponents down. His speed has often proved too much for any of his opponents. He recently overcame former UK Olympian Luke Campbell after being knocked down early on.
Despite some doubts and controversies surrounding him, no one can disagree that he possesses incredible speed. He is definitely someone to look out for in the near future!
You often hear people say that a boxer should have retired earlier. In Andre Berto’s case, it was the opposite. Berto was an entertaining speedster but only fought 37 times in the professional ranks. His career spanned from 2004 to 2018, during which he won 32 of his fights.
Fans rightfully feel that Berto had the potential to continue fighting. However, this can only speak to how much of an entertaining fighter he was to watch. Berto was renowned for his speed. With his hands to could rip an opponent apart.
He possessed great speed and power. His fight against Floyd Mayweather showed Floyd’s genius, as Berto never managed to utilize this speed or powerfully. Nevertheless, he was a great boxer and loved by fans all around the world.
The Mexican boxer had a tremendous career during which he dominated the featherweight division. He was often said to have all the elements needed to be a great boxer: great speed and power combined with a lethal counterpunching technique.
Compared to other fighters on this list, Sanchez had a short career. It lasted only from 1975 to 1982. However, in a total of 46 bouts, he only lost a single fight. The Mexican utilized his incredible speed to outwork his opponents, bit by bit.
His speed, along with a strong right hand, made him one of the best featherweights ever.
Vasiliy ‘hi-tech’ Lomachenko shook the boxing world after a formidable amateur career. It has been a long time since we saw a fighter as technically sound as Loma. He utilizes every possible weapon in his arsenal to outclass his opponents.
Loma dances in the ring, creating angles effortlessly and at an impossible pace. He moves so fast that his opponents can barely keep up. He has a lightning-quick jab and incredible movement. He is so defensively skilled that his opponents rarely connect.
Loma is an incredible talent! Not only does he slip well, but he uses his defense to set up the perfect offense. His counterpunching would not have been nearly as effective had it not been for the pace with which he fights.
Thomas ‘The Hitman’ Hearns
Tommy Hearns fought in an area where the four middleweight kings ruled the division. Between Hearns, Hagler, Duran, and Leonard, they produced some of the greatest fights ever. Hearns is often overlooked due to the losses he has suffered.
However, nothing can take away from the fact that this man had hands and a serious one at that! For example, in his fight with Hagler, his speed was evident. For every punch, Hagler landed, albeit more powerful, Hearns landed at least three or four.
He threw blistering combinations on the inside and could hide behind his stiff jab if needed. Overall, Hearns was a great fighter who fought smartly and used his speed for ripping his opponents apart, piece by piece.
Andy Ruiz will go down in history as the textbook example of an underdog. Short and overweight, Ruiz does not fit the stereotypical look of a fighter. Nobody could say this on that night in 2019 when AJ hit the canvas for the first time. In some ways, it was poetic.
With perfect timing and accuracy, Ruiz landed that big hook and took down the champ. He possessed incredible hand speed and power and knew how to utilize it. It was the ultimate manifestation of the age-old saying that speed kills or rate beats power.
A fit, Ruiz would undoubtedly give any other heavyweights today a good run for their money. If the ex-champ can train consistently, perhaps he might have another shot at the title soon.
Fury does not fit the typical fighter on the list. However, anyone who has seen him fight can testify how smoothly he moves. What makes his speed so incredible is the fact that he moves so swiftly for someone his size. Fury is a large heavyweight, standing at over 2 meters tall.
Fury possesses excellent head movement, supplemented by his ability to determine range. He moves well on the backfoot and can attack from different angles simultaneously. His historic trilogy against Wilder perfectly showed how he uses his speed to his advantage.
Fans eagerly await a possible show-off with fellow Britton, Anthony Joshua. Behind a tremendous jab, Fury is an extravagant performer and one of the most entertaining active fighters today. How will his speed hold against Joshua’s power? Only time will tell!
Oscar De La Hoya
The Golden Boy was not the best-known speedster of his era. However, he utilized it to avoid being left off this list. De La Hoya was a big puncher, but power alone cannot take you all the way. He used fast combinations to set up his power punches.
De La Hoya moved well; destruction followed when he let his hands go. This made him a deadly force inside the ring. The Golden Boy won 11 world titles in 6 different weight classes throughout his career. During his prime, he was one of the most entertaining fighters. He retired from boxing with a record of 39 and 6.
Inoue is another one of the boxers who firmly sits in the top 5 of any credible pound-for-pound list today. The 29-year-old made his debut in 2012 and then stormed the professional ranks. He is the current unified bantamweight champion and helps the title in three weight classes.
He boasts an incredible 23-0 record, with 20 of those wins coming from a knockout. Inoue is known for his strength, but he also possesses formidable speed. His most recent battle against Nonito Donaire perfectly showed how his hand speed allows him to get the most out of his dynamite hands.
The Cuban was an amateur legend, moving to the professional ranks with a record of 374-12. His time in the unpaid ranks made him one of the few fighters to win two gold medals at the Olympic Games (in 2000 and 2004, respectively).
The bantamweight star was a serious force to be reckoned with during his prime. He moved smoothly in that classic Cuban style and had incredible hand speed to accompany it. There are a lot of uncertainties about the 41-year-old’s career. As of July 2022, he holds a record of 20 and 3, with one no contest.
The current heavyweight champion of the world is known for his tremendous speed. Usyk is one of the complete fighters of our day and age. He moves well, creates angles brilliantly, possesses excellent speed and power, and tops it off with immaculate defense.
His prowess was best seen in his masterclass against Anthony Joshua. That is why he is included in this list. It is not because the Ukrainian boasts incredible speed in one aspect. Instead, he has excellent foot and hand speed. Also, Usyk is one of the few professional boxers who have higher education.
Quite frankly, his only disadvantage today is his size, as he looks to remain on top of the heavyweight division.
Crawford sits comfortably in the top 3 of any current pound-for-pound list today. He is one of the greatest active fighters and still holds that unbeaten record. T-Bud turned pro in 2008 and has had a stellar career thus far.
He held/holds titles in 3 different weight classes. His 38 and 0 record speaks of his abilities. Not only does he have tremendous KO power, but he also moves incredibly fast, even by welterweight standards. He is one of the most exciting prospects in the world today.
Fans eagerly await a showdown with fellow welterweight Errol Spence Jr. It will be the ultimate battle as both fighters possess great speed and power and are smart boxers.
Gervonta ‘Tank’ Davis is one of the most exciting prospects in the world today. As a lightweight, Tank possesses exceptional KO power and is a devastating force to be reckoned with. His speed is, however, one of his best qualities and he is often not given credit for it.
Tank is a magnificent counter puncher. His 25 KOs out of his unbeaten 27-0 record is evident. Davis forms part of a stacked lightweight division. Fans eagerly await to see how his speed and power will match up against Lomachenko, Lopez, and Ryan Garcia.
Donaire is rightfully known today as the ‘Filipino Flash.’ Despite having suffered two losses to bantamweight star Nayo Inoue, Donaire is one of the fastest fighters in the world today. This speaks volumes about his incredible hand speed and sharp footwork.
He has held titles in four weight classes, from fly- to featherweight. During his impressive career, the Filipino Flash has won 42 of his 49 fights, winning 28 by KO. To add to his list of significant achievements, Donaire is one of the few boxers to hold a world title in three different decades. Donaire has been a champion in the 2000s, 2010s, and 2020s.
‘The GWOAT’ is undoubtedly one of the best fighters in the world today. Her records speak for themselves. Shields twice won the Olympic Gold Medal and has already conquered the middleweight and light-middleweight divisions.
Claressa is barely 27 but has already attempted to launch a successful career as a mixed martial artist. Her tremendous power, technical ability, and hand speed has helped her achieve great success throughout her boxing career. There seems to be no end to what the GWOAT can accomplish.
She is an exciting prospect as she looks to set up a possible clash against the fearless Savannah Marshall.
Amando Serrano is arguably one of the greatest female boxers of all time. She has been crowned champion in seven weight classes and has an incredible 28-fight winning streak. Serrano has shown her perfect power and speed throughout her professional career.
The 33-year-old has built up a phenomenal 42-1-1 record. She most recently placed that record on the line in a historic event for female boxing. She faced Katie Taylor in the headline event at Madison Square Garden. Taylor emerged victorious with a split decision victory in a tough battle between the two.
Estrada holds the infamous record for the fastest KO recorded in female boxing. It took her only a total of 7 seconds to finish Miranda Atkins! She possesses blistering hand speed and is also a good mover in the ring.
Her boxing skills have rightfully allowed her a place in DAZN’s pound-for-pound top 10 female boxers of 2022. She still holds that perfect record, boasting an impressive 22-0 thus far. The 29-year-old is the current 105-pound champion and will look to utilize her speed in a possible unification bout against Yokasta Valle later this year.