8. Yoko Gushiken
Years Active: 1974-1981
Professional Record: 23-1, 15 KOs
Titles: WBA Light Flyweight champion 1976-1981
Yoko Gushiken was nicknamed the “Fierce Eagle” because of his aggressive style and for having strong stamina.
He utilized his southpaw stance, aggression and non-stop combination punching to simply overwhelm his opponents, who eventually wilted under the pressure he applied.
Gushiken fought for the WBA Light Flyweight crown after just nine professional fights. He defeated Juan Antonio Guzmán, a well-seasoned pro, by knockout in the seventh round. He held the championship for over four years. He made a then division record 13 title defenses, including eight by knockout.
Among his victorious title defenses, Gushiken defeated future champions Alfonso Lopez, Rafael Pedroza and Pedro Flores. In his 14th title defense, he fought Mexican Pedro Flores in a rematch, who had previously lost a close decision to him. In the rematch, Flores defeated Gushiken by knockout in the 12th round.
Gushiken retired shortly after the fight. While many expected Gushiken to return to the ring, he channeled his energy and huge popularity to become a successful tarento.
Gushiken was inducted in the International Boxing Hall of Fame in June 2015.
Photo by Kyodo News via AP