Originally I HATED Whitaker for his clowning and rare displays of overt aggression but I was young and didn't appreciate a true stylist.
The Azumah Nelson fight cinched it for me that nobody was gonna beat this guy except maybe Chavez, and Chavez didn't either.
What's impressive is his chin he showed vs. Tito. If you put that kind of chin and heart into the prime defensive skills he had, he was as knockout-proof as any fighter that ever lived. He got floored a few times (Mayweather, Hurtado, McGirt) but those were often off-balance or Whitaker getting caught in a flash shot. He was always right up. In his prime he would give any lightweight or 140 hell and probably beat a lot of great 147s, too. He was a defensive marvel.