Many of the young boxers and fans were too young to remember him.
But there others in Sheffield yesterday, who had witnessed his style and power and will never forget him.
Sugar Ray Leonard, the genuine article.
It was 1989 when the super-fast hands of WBC World super welterweight title outpointed Roberto Durán after 12 gruelling rounds in Las Vegas.
That was five years before Atif Shafiq, one of the Sheffield professional fighters who waited to meet him, was even born.
Although there were a couple more fights for Leonard, that win over the Panamanian warhorse signalled the end to a glittering career.
He’d been the first boxer to earn more than $100m and won world titles in five weight divisions.
Yesterday, the 58-year-old and motivational speaker, and some-time actor, was in Sheffield to open up the new Pow Fitness gym on the Moor.
Considering his first pro fight fetched him a purse of 40,000 dollars back in 1977, he is unlikely to have come cheap.
But the hundreds of fight fans who queued up to have their photograph taken with him weren’t thinking of that.
They just wanted to shake the hand of a man who ruled at an era of incredible talent - including Durán, Thomas Hearns and Marvin Hagler.
n Meanwhile, Floyd Mayweather Jr’s father has wrecked any apparent chance that a win over Manny Pacquiao could see his son take on Sheffield’s Kell Brook or Amir Khan .
Mayweather and Pacquiao face each other on May 2 and Brook would leap at the chance of unifying the division, saying that when he has beaten IBF challenger Jo Jo Dan, there will be only him and the winner of their clash left at the top of the welterweight division .
Mayweather Snr said: “Khan or Brook? Floyd doesn’t need to fight those guys. Why would he? There is nothing in those fights for him. It is not even in our thoughts.”