The Hitman Thomas Hearns is one of the most recognisable names in Boxing. Hearns was one of the famous Fab Four group of fighters who all competed against each other in the 1980’s – the others being Sugar Ray Leonard, Roberto Duran and Marvin Hagler.
Another of Thomas Hearns nicknames was The Motor City Cobra – Motor City of course referring to Detroit and Cobra because of Hearns snake like jab. Hearns was one of the best ever at using the jab and we can clearly see the influence of Muhammad Ali when he threw the jab, often firing it out from out low and with his speed and reach it made Hearns well nigh impossible to out box.
I once came across a video where Mark Breland – who is the coach of Heavyweight Deontay Wilder, was a world champion at Welterweight and quite possibly the greatest amateur the USA has produced, saying that Thomas Hearns was the best ever at using the feint. When you have such a great jab and one of the best right hands in history then it is no surprise that feinting those scary punches will cause opponents to second guess.
In this video below I take a look at Thomas Hearns used the jab feint. Now Hearns was very good at mixing the jab feint up, he would slow down the jab feint and then throw a fast jab behind it. He would then throw the fast jab feint and then follow it up with a fast jab. I am assuming Hearns was mixing up and varying the speed of his feints to confuse his opponent and prevent them from timing his jab and using counters.
What is just as interesting is that Hearns didn’t always immediately start using the jab feint – in this fight with Light Heavyweight champion Virgil Hill, Hearns began by using the foot feint to feint a jab and he then progressed on to using the head feint before introducing the jab feint.
Once Hearns was troubling his opponent with the jab feint and using the fast jab behind the feint he could then introduce other punches off the feint such as hooking off the jab feint and throwing the right hand behind the jab feint. What I also found interesting about Hearns jab feint is that he feinted the jab by flaring the elbow out, usually we are told to feint by throwing the punch half out when feinting the jab, not to flare the elbow out but Hearns did just that and it worked for him!
Boxing Coach Strength and Conditioning Coach Boxing Author of: The Boxing Cheat Sheet - Your Ultimate Guide to Ring Survival Strength and Conditioning for Boxing - Work out Hits to get you Fighting Fit! Forgotten Legends of the Ring - Ten Past Masters of the Squared Circle *Any videos or images used on this site to support my articles that are copyrighted are used for educational purposes and in accordance to the fair use act and are not my own - all credit is due to the respective owners. No copyright infringement intended.
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