Tag Archives | boxing history

Meanwhile in the ’51 Lightweight Division (diary entry)

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18.01.1951   Tonight we caught up with the lightweight division and I was fortunate enough to catch one of the last recorded matches of Ike Williams before we moved onto a new era under Jimmy Carter.   Ike Williams versus Jose Maria Gatica 05.01.1951   By this stage in his career, Ike Williams had a record of 115–15–4. He had defended the title three times since beating Beau Jack in 1948 and a total of five times since he took […]

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The New King (diary entry)

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12.01.2022 Jersey Joe Walcott versus Rocky Marciano Undisputed World Heavyweight Championship 23.09.1952 After his second round knockout rematch with Gino Buovino Rocky Marciano knocked out Bernie Reynolds in round three and Harry Matthews in round two. Jersey Joe Walcott’s unanimous decision against Ezzard Charles was his first title defence before facing Marciano. Both these fighters had had careers of being the underdogs, but now it was accepted they were best two boxers to fight for the heavyweight crown and proven […]

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Gavilán, Marciano & Walcott (diary entry)

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04.01.2022   Tuesday night’s “Learn from the Fight” we stepped back to 1951 as Kid Gavilán challenged Johnny Bratton for the undisputed World Welterweight Championship. Then it was back to Rocky Marciano in 1952 as he fought a rematch against Gino Buovino on his way to the world heavyweight title. Later that year the actual title was being contested in yet another rematch between Jersey Joe Walcott and Ezzard Charles.   Kid Gavilán versus Johnny Bratton World Undisputed Welterweight Championship 18.05.1951 […]

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Great Feuds: Robinson vs Turpin 1 (diary entry)

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30.11.2021 Tuesday night’s “Learn from the Fight” gave us arguably Sugar Ray Robinson’s toughest fight since he first fought Jake La Motta, as he put his world title on the line against the great Randolph Turpin. After his sixth and final bloody match with Jake La Motta, taking the World Middleweight Championship, Sugar Ray Robinson beat Americans Holly Mimms by unanimous decision and Don Ellis in a first round KO before embarking on a European tour. Now a legitimate superstar, […]

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Great Feuds: Return of the Rock (diary entry)

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23.11.2021 “Learn from the Fight” returned to the career of the popular slugger, Rocky Graziano, and three of his fights in 1950 and 1951. This was following his loss of the World Middleweight title to Tony Zale in the conclusion of their trilogy. Zale had since been beaten by Marcel Cerdan and retired. Cerdan had lost the title to Jake LaMotta before being killed in a plane crash. LaMotta lost the title to Robinson in the conclusion of their sextology […]

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Rise of the Mongoose (diary entry)

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04.11.2021 Tonight’s lesson focused on my all-time favourite boxer, “Ancient” Archie “The Ole Mongoose”, Moore. Ring Magazine list him as the third greatest pound-for-pound fighter of all time and fourth greatest puncher of all time. It is contested that Moore might have the biggest string of knockouts in the history of the sport. Welterweight boxer, Billy Bird, whose career ended in 1948 and sadly we have no available footage of fighting, gets the official recognition with 138. Moore’s official record […]

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Great Feuds – St Valentine’s Day Massacre (diary entry)

Robinson vs LaMotta

26.10.21 Tuesday night returned us to the careers of Jake “The Bronx Bull” LaMotta and Sugar Ray Robinson. None of their first five matchups are easy to access, at least the first three were damaged beyond repair, and we have to settle for what many consider to be a legendary sixth contest: The St. Valentine’s Day Massacre. This would be the last time the two fighters met and would be a key scene in Martin Scorsese’s biopic on LaMotta, “Raging […]

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Great Feuds – Pep vs Saddler (diary entry)

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19.10.21 Tuesday night’s “Learn from the Fight” returned to the career of Willie Pep and Sandy Saddler. We were unable to unearth footage from their first two fights when Pep was given the spotlight. However, we had access to highlights from their third encounter and the full fourth encounter. Pep and Saddler are often ranked as the greatest featherweights of all time, respectively the greatest pure out-boxer and slugger of all time and in just about anyone’s top 20 greatest […]

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Cinderella Man 2 (diary entry)

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12.10.2021 Tuesday night’s second lesson was “learn from the fight” where we reviewed highlights from Ezzard Charles and Jersey Joe Walcott’s second fight and the entirety of their third clash. Ezzard Charles versus Jersey Joe Walcott World Heavyweight Championship 07.03.1951 It had been two years since Walcott and Charles had last met to fight for the then vacant NBA heavyweight title. Charles had emerged the victor on a unanimous decision and then gone on to beat the man who had […]

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King Cobra (diary entry)

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Ezzard Charles versus Joe Louis 27.09.1950 After winning the tournament that decided Joe Louis’s successor for the NBA version of the World Heavyweight title, Ezzard Charles fought three title defences before he was given an opportunity to unite the belt with the NYSAC and The Ring titles. He soundly defeated Gus Lesnevich, Pat Valentino and Freddie Beshore inside the distance with a corner stoppage, a straight KO and TKO respectively, but the general audiences weren’t impressed. Neither the first nor […]

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Boxer-Puncher versus Out-Boxer & Swarmer (diary entry)

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31.08.21 Tuesday’s “Learn from the Fight” lesson focused on two championship bouts where Isiah “Ike” Williams defended his World Lightweight title. Williams was born in Brunswick, Georgia on 2nd August 1923. He moved to Trenton, New Jersey as a boy and apparently worked as a newsboy. He turned professional in 1940 aged 17. He fought 157 fights, including newspaper decisions, with an official record of 128 wins (61 KOs), 24 losses and five draws. He was a natural lightweight and […]

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“The Casablanca Clouter” (diary entry)

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Tuesday night’s “Learn from the Fight” lesson focused on the career and three fights of Marcel “The Casablanca Clouter” Cerdan. The first fight acts as a direct sequel to last lesson’s rubber match finale of the Rocky Graziano/Tony Zale trilogy as it was Zale’s first defence. Tony Zale versus Marcel Cerdan Undisputed World Middleweight Title Defence 21.09.1948 After winning the title back from Rocky Graziano, Tony Zale only fought one more time and that was to defend this very title. […]

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Graziano and Zale (diary entry)

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17.08.21 Tuesday night’s learn from the fight lesson spotlighted fights connecting two middleweight champions Rocky Graziano and Tony Zale. Rocky Graziano – real name Thomas Rocco Barbella – was born in Brooklyn, New York, and was the son of sometime boxer Fighting Nick Bob Barbella. His father encouraged Rocky to don boxing gloves and fight with older brother from when he was only three years old almost every night. Rocky disliked authority of any kind and although he did well […]

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Rematches! (diary entry)

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27.07.21 I began my second lesson of the evening – my fight history teaching – with a step back to 1940. This was the last footage I have been able to currently find of a full Henry Armstrong fight. Henry Armstrong vs Ceferino Garcia 01.03.1940 Ring Magazine declared this to be their Fight of the Year. This fight was billed as the World Middleweight Championship but was only recognised by the California State Athletic Commission. When last we left Ceferino […]

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Buddy & Joe (diary entry)

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13.07.21 We picked up with Joe Louis’s boxing journey when he faced Jacob Henry “Buddy” Baer, younger brother (by six years) of Louis’s former opponent and the former world heavyweight champion Max Baer. Joe Louis versus Buddy Baer 1941 Although a 10-1 underdog, Buddy Baer was a legitimate contender for the world title. Like his brother, he was a pure slugger in style and had an impressive 85% KO record. Some records have him fighting 58 times, others 62. All […]

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Five Ranges & Night of the Boxers (diary entry)

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06.07.21 Tuesday night’s fight history remained in the 1930s for a review of 1931’s first clash between Kid Chocolate and Tony Canzoneri. That year Max Schmeling defended the world heavyweight title against Young Stribling by technical knockout in the 15th round, establishing his reputation as a legitimate holder of the title. That match was rated as fight of the year by Ring magazine. However, there are others that would give the credit to the aesthetically pleasing World Lightweight Championship that […]

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