Jim Watt endured seven of them, Ricky Burns two and Ken Buchanan, Britain’s greatest ever lightweight boxer, had just one.
Losses pre dating world title wins may be devastating but they need not damage legacies.
This was reaffirmed by Anthony Crolla on Saturday as he combined toughness and tactical nous to beat Ismael Barroso, the heavy-handed Venezuelan who stopped Kevin Mitchell last year.
Manchester’s WBA lightweight champion has four defeats on his record.
I suspect those setbacks will only boost his chances of luring the division’s top boxers into the squared circle with him.
Barroso, a southpaw as well as an exceptional puncher [he put Mitchell on the floor with a jab] thought he could halt Crolla like Derry Mathews did in 2012.
The bookmakers did too.
Therein lies the danger for the 29-year-old’s future opponents.
Manchester has another world beater at lightweight in the shape of WBO champion Terry Flanagan and a unification matchup would be enthralling. Flanagan, three years younger, can really box.
Let’s hope their rivalry doesn’t become the lightweight equivalent of Ricky Hatton and Junior Witter, and Amir Khan and Kell Brook.
I’m not even sure if Khan, crushed by the right hand of Saul ‘Canelo’ Alvarez, was conscious when Brook challenged him to an “all British showdown” via social media.
The Sheffield man’s message was a tad embarrassing.
Even more mortifying was the swiftness of Khan’s declaration that he has no interest in fighting Brook. Instead he hopes for a rematch with Danny Garcia and, bizarrely, a bout with Miguel Cotto.
Only a week ago, Khan’s trainer Virgil Hunter said: “Amir doesn’t have that type of killer instinct that Miguel Cotto has. If he had that type of killer instinct we could really know if his punch was in comparison with it.”
Brook is not the first fighter forced into re-evaluation realms following the collapse of a lucrative fight.
Years before they eventually met in the ring, Sugar Ray Leonard took immense pleasure teasing Marvelous Marvin Hagler about a possible super-fight between the welterweight and middleweight champions.
Leonard retired, for the first time, with an eye injury in 1982 leaving Hagler apoplectic that his windfall was out the window.
But the undisputed middleweight ruler rebuilt and mainstream recognition arrived three years later when he knocked out Thomas ‘Hitman’ Hearns in one of the sport’s most brutal battles.
Can Brook remain as dedicated as Hagler did? Does he have the desire to commit himself to a challenge which, at times, may entail top-class training for second-class opponents?
A fight with rising star, and soon-to-be mandatory challenger, Errol Spence would take him one step closer to the recognition he craves.
For the first half of his recent title bout against Rogelio Medina, a tough but limited challenger stopped three times previously, James DeGale was on another level.
The IBF super-middleweight champion’s shots were as audacious as his use of a switch-hitting style that has given all of his opponents a degree of trouble.
However, in DeGale fights, a pattern emerges.
He starts well, catches the eye. When he desires, he can make the most qualified ring professionals look amateurish.
But around the half-way point, DeGale’s skills are nullified.
His opponents creep into the bout. They cut off the ring, apply the most intense pressure and land shots.
That is what happened with Medina, just like it did in his title-winning encounter with American Andre Dirrell.
Fans forgave him for the Dirrell lapse; he had surrendered home advantage before negotiating his way past a slick southpaw who once troubled Carl Froch en route to losing a split decision to the man from Nottingham.
Medina, though, should have been a simple, routine defence.
With super-middleweight fighters walking through DeGale’s punches, his ambitions of moving to light-heavyweight appear foolish. Will he unify his current division? I wouldn’t bet on it.
The proposed fight versus WBC champion Badou Jack will be trickier than he thinks.
The super-middleweight division has hype on its side but such hoopla can only hide mediocrity for so long.
The dominant days of Joe Calzaghe weren’t always great for fans however the Welshman’s presence eased the pain.
The weight class peaked when Froch faced the likes of Andre Ward, Arthur Abraham and Mikkel Kessler, a former Calzaghe opponent, in the Super Six World Boxing Classic tournament.
Today it’s unrecognisable. And DeGale, pictured above, and Jack are good indicators of the standard.
The 2008 Olympic gold medallist was pick pocketed by rival George Groves, later stopped in two fights against Froch.
But Groves was able to recover from the defeats to lose a split decision to Jack.
Swedish boxer Jack and DeGale have also been dragged into deep waters by former IBF champion Bute – the same man Froch annihilated in five rounds in 2012.
One ray of light is Liverpool’s European champion Callum Smith.
The WBC mandatory challenger possesses the kind of punching power that scares opponents into relinquishing belts.
It’ll be a travesty if he doesn’t get a title shot in 2016.