Outdoor Wars … Legendary Bouts in Famous Stadiums (Part 2 of 2)

By Bob Quackenbush / dmboxing.com

In last week’s article, we looked at nine classic prize fights that were contested at well known outdoor stadiums.  In Chicago, it was Soldier Field and Comiskey Park; in New York, the Polo Grounds and Ebbets Field; and in Washington D.C., Griffith Stadium.  

Yankee Stadium – 1923

This week, the spotlight will be on “The House that Ruth Built”, the legendary Yankee Stadium. Though the Bambino and his famous baseball teams were the star attraction at this venue, and the New York Giants football team was the gridiron tenant (1956-73), the sport of boxing brought in big names and big crowds, as well.  It was said that Yankee Stadium was Joe Louis’ personal fight club as he appeared there so many times (twelve times per BoxRec).  The stadium was actually prepared for the fight game as a concrete vault with radio lines permanently installed for broadcasters was buried in the ground under second base.

Thirteen famous bouts highlight Part 2 of our look at famous prize fights in the great outdoors. [Reminder … this is not an exhaustive list, but a selection of some of the most famous bouts contested at this location.]

YANKEE STADIUM, the Bronx, New York City:

  • Jess Willard defeated Floyd Johnson by technical knockout in round eleven on May 12, 1923.  In the first boxing event ever held at Yankee Stadium, promoter Tex Rickard organized a benefit program staged as a heavyweight carnival from which a worthy challenger for champion Jack Dempsey could be selected. The 6’ 6” Willard who was 41 and not active at the time was brought in to face the young Johnson who was 38-2.  Willard trained hard and was good for a few rounds, pounding Johnson with uppercuts until the younger fighter took control. Somehow, Willard made it to the eleventh and caught Johnson with a huge punch to end the round, and Johnson couldn’t answer the bell for round twelve. 63,000 were there to see it.
  • Max Schmeling defeated Joe Louis by knockout in round twelve on June 12, 1936.  The experienced Schmeling (59 pro bouts) used timing and counter-punching to conquer the young and powerful Louis, sending him down with a big right hand before an estimated 60,000. Louis would later get a title shot, defeating Jim Braddock in 1937. 
  • Joe Louis defeated Max Schmeling by knockout in the first round on June 22, 1938.  In their much anticipated rematch, Louis pounded Schmeling in front of a sell-out crowd, knocking him down three times in 56 seconds. The third time, the German’s corner threw in the towel as the referee continued the count, and Schmeling could not get up. 
Max Schmeling versus Joe Louis … The Rematch
Continue reading Outdoor Wars … Legendary Bouts in Famous Stadiums (Part 2 of 2)

Garden Casino Fight Night Tickets On Sale Now – Big Opening Night Set

When Roy Englebrecht Promotions kicks off their new four date hybrid fight series at the new ultra-modern Gardens Casino in Hawaiian Gardens, CA on Saturday, February 9th, fans will not only get to see some of the best undefeated boxing talent in Southern California, some great mixed martial arts action, and if that wasn’t enough they will also get to enjoy the most beautiful new casino in Southern California. It will all take place in the Casino’s Events Center as this new series titled the Gardens Casino Fight Night, puts all tickets priced at just $60, on sale today at www.socafights.com.

The February 9th show line up of boxers and mma fighters were introduced recently at a special Press Luncheon at the Gardens Casino. On the boxing side fight fans will see: undefeated 8-0 super middleweight out of Anaheim, Jonathan Esquivel; undefeated 9-0 super bantamweight Humberto “Filly” Rubalcava out of Westminster; 7-0 super featherweight Anthony Casillas out of South Gate; and 1-0 bantamweight Anthony Ramirez out of Fontana. These four undefeated boxers will bring a perfect 25-0 record with 18 knockouts into the Events Center.

Continue reading Garden Casino Fight Night Tickets On Sale Now – Big Opening Night Set

Bad Bennie

By Jim Amato / Senior Boxing Writer

There are certain boxers from my past that in retrospect would be champions today. One such boxer was tough enough to be nicknamed “Bad.”  He was Bennie Briscoe from Philadelphia and brother you better bet he was just that, “Bad.” He was probably the most feared middleweight of his era and it was a tough time just be a middleweight in Philly. If you were bad there, you were bad everywhere.

Briscoe turned pro in 1962 and would win his first fifteen contests. Among his victims were Charley Scott and Percy Manning.  In a return with Manning in 1965, Bennie would suffer his first setback.  That year he would also lose to Tito Marshall and Stanley “Kitten” Hayward.  In 1966 Bennie would halt the highly respected George Benton.

Bennie was now among the middleweight elite.  The year 1967 would see him lose two decisions to the great Luis Rodriguez. Sandwiched in between those losses was a draw in Argentina with a fella named Carlos Monzon. In 1968, he would lose to future light heavyweight titleholder Vincente Rondon.  He would knock out Rondon in a 1969 rematch.

Continue reading Bad Bennie

Outdoor Wars … Legendary Bouts in Famous Stadiums (Part 1 of 2)

By Bob Quackenbush / dmboxing.com

In the world of boxing, indoor arenas are the venues that typically come to mind.  These locations with their traditional images of sweat, cigar smoke, and packed crowds close to the ring are what is envisioned when “prize fighting” is the topic of discussion.  Wonderful examples would be Philadelphia’s Blue Horizon, The Olympic Auditorium and Hollywood Legion Stadium in Los Angeles, and, on a larger scale, Madison Square Garden.

Firpo versus Dempsey at the Polo Grounds by George Bellows

However, many title fights have been held in the “great outdoors” at facilities such as baseball and football stadiums. Some even took place in temporary structures built for specific events, the most famous being the “Fight of the Century” between Jack Johnson and James Jeffries in Reno, Nevada, on July 4, 1910.  

Most of the famous outdoor bouts took place in New York City, with several more in Chicago.  There were others, too, but for the purposes of this article, the focus will be on the Big Apple and the Windy City, plus a fight in our nation’s capital.  Here’s a look at several well known contests held in some legendary outdoor venues from years gone by.  [Note: This is not an exhaustive list.]

SOLDIER FIELD, Chicago:

  • Gene Tunney defeated Jack Dempsey by unanimous decision on September 22, 1927.  This was the famous “Long Count” bout where Tunney went down after a combination in the seventh round, but the referee did not start the count until Dempsey went to a neutral corner. Tunney, “The Fighting Marine”, who took the heavyweight title from Dempsey a year before, defended it successfully as he dropped the “Manassa Mauler” in the eighth and controlled the remaining rounds. This was the first fight in history where the gate exceeded $2,000,000.
“The Long Count” at Soldier Field
Continue reading Outdoor Wars … Legendary Bouts in Famous Stadiums (Part 1 of 2)

Year in Review / The Best in Boxing 2018

By David Martinez / dmboxing.com

I have assembled my personal choices in boxing for the past year, 2018, in six major categories.  Picks are solely my opinion, and I sincerely respect and welcome the opinions of others – thank you!

FIGHTER OF THE YEAR: 

Oleksandr Usyk (16-0 / 12 by KO) IBF/WBA/WBC/WBO Cruiserweight Champion

1-27-18 / vs. Mairis Briedis (26-0) / MD 12

7-21-18 / vs. Murat Gassiev (23-0) / UD 12

11-10-18 / vs. Tony Bellew (30-2-1) / KO 8

*** Runner Up’s:

Vasiliy Lomachenko (12-1 / 9 by KO) WBA/WBO Lightweight Champion

5-12-18 / vs. Jorge Linares / TKO 10

12-8-18 / vs. Jose Pedraza / UD 12

Naoya Inque (17-0 / 15 by KO) WBA Bantamweight Champion

5-25-18 / vs. James McDonnell / KO 1

10-1-18 / vs. Juan Carlos Payano / KO 1

Continue reading Year in Review / The Best in Boxing 2018

RING TRIVIA for December 2018 – ANSWERS

I have always been intrigued with boxing trivia.  This began back when I was a kid in 1961.  I would pick the minds of the older generation and ask them questions about their era to educate myself.  It’s now my pleasure to bring boxing trivia to my website for everyone.  On a quarterly basis I post five (5) multiple choice questions – March, June, September, and December – with the correct answers to follow by the end of each posting month for viewing.

1 – Who is the only person to have been a Ring Announcer in a Professional Title Fight and also a Judge in a Professional Title Fight ?

a)  Jimmy Lennon, Sr.

b)  Johnny Addie

c)  Steve Corbo – ANSWER ***

d)  Ed Darien

2 – In October 1967 a match was proposed between Muhammad Ali and Wilt Chamberlain for the Houston Astrodome. Had it taken place, who would have been Wilt’s trainer ?

a)  Ray Arcel

b)  George Benton

c)  Eddie Futch

d)  Cus D’Amato – ANSWER ***

Continue reading RING TRIVIA for December 2018 – ANSWERS

FROM THE DESK OF: David Martinez

As we head into 2019, I wish everybody the best of health and a prosperous Happy New Year!

It is absolutely my pleasure to bring you this website.  There have been 1,551 published feature articles – an average of eleven per month – since the beginning of dmboxing.com which started on July 15, 2007.

I am truly thankful for the special people that continue to help and contribute to the success of this website; they are: Bob Quackenbush (Lead Assistant / Proofer Reader / PhotoEditing); Tom Donelson (Member Boxing Writers Association of America); KathyKraft (Proof Reader); Steve Corbo (Boxing Writer / Proof Reader); Harold Lederman (HBO World Championship Boxing); Jim Amato (Senior Boxing Writer / Boxing Historian); Rusty Rubin (In Rusty’s Corner / Glove2Glove / first to contribute to dmboxing in July 2007) as his friendship and lovely memory will never be forgotten (R.I.P.)

For those of you that have purchased website products, thank you for your support, and as holiday gifts this year it was my pleasure to send out approximately 100 calendars to friends and my boxing constituents; if I missed anyone, please contact me and I will kindly and promptly make one available to you.

Speaking of gifts, be sure to reserve your copy of an amazing boxing publication by author Gene Aguilera called “Latino Boxing In Southern California”.  This is Gene’s second book and, like his first, it’s a gem.  Purchase information: price $22.99 (plus shipping and handling); contact Gene at (323) 697-7197 or geneaguilera@sbcglobal.net  

I would like to bring to your attention that coming next month is an outstanding and interesting two-part article piece written by Bob Quackenbush regarding famous outdoor venues of historic fights.  You don’t want to miss it.

As the year 2018 comes to an end, I will have my “Year in Review / Best of in Boxing” top five categories – Fighter, Fight, Round, Knockout, and Upset. These are my personal picks and will be posted during the first week in January 2019 for viewing.

Here are my top “pound for pound” dozen boxers (ending December 2018):

1) Terence Crawford (35-0 / 24 by KO)

2) Vasiliy Lomachenko (12-1 / 9 by KO)

3) Oleksandr Usyk (16-0 / 12 by KO)

4) Gennady Golovkin (38-1-1 / 34 by KO)

5) Canelo Alvarez (51-1-2 / 35 by KO)

6) Mikey Garcia (39-0 / 30 by KO)

7) Errol Spence Jr. (24-0 / 21 by KO)

8) Naoya Inoue (17-0 / 15 by KO)

9) Srisaket Sor Rungvisai 47-4-1 / 41 by KO)

10) Leo Santa Cruz (35-1-1 / 19 by KO)

11) Anthony Joshua (22-0 / 21 by KO)

12) Donnie Nietes (41-1-5 / 23 by KO)

In closing, thanks to everybody for making dmboxing.com a part of your boxing selection!

A special thank you to website hat model, Amy … note – hat is blue in color embroidered with official website logo, adjustable Velcro strap to fit all sizes – price is $18.00 – includes FREE shipping.

Tony Harrison upsets Jermell Charlo … Breazeale by KO over Negron … Jermall Charlo by Decision over Matt Korobov

By Tom Donelson (BWAA)

Author, Member Boxers Writers Association of America

Boxing is the theater of the unexpected and one of the most unpredictable thing to predict is how a judge will view a fight.  Jermell Charlo / Tony Harrison fight was one of those fights that many of us watching the fight saw Charlo the winner but the judges had it for Tony Harrison.  Charlo was the aggressor throughout the fight and landed an average of three punches more per round and I had him up by 117-111.  While much of the audience were stunned, Charlo allowed Harrison to stay in the fight.  He never dominated the fight as the favorite he was and while he stunned Harrison in the last round, he could not finish off Harrison.  Compubox saw that Charlo landed more punches in 9 of the 12 rounds but many of these rounds were close and decided by a punch or two so we saw many close rounds, very similar to the Fury – Wilder fight in which there were many close rounds. The difference in the Charlo-Harrison fight was that Charlo never had Harrison in trouble until the twelve whereas in the Fury – Wilder fight, Wilder twice nearly stopped the bout but for the ability of Fury to remained standing against two very brutal knockdown that would have stopped most fighters.

Jermell Charlo may have shown that he would certainly be an underdog against Jarrett Hurd, who is probably the best Super Welterweight in the world and who stopped Harrison when they both fought.  Charlo fought a tactical fight and while he was the aggressor, Harrison did effective counterpunching at selected times in the fight.  In my view, there were four rounds easy to score but there were eight rounds that were close as Compubox numbers attest.  The judges gave most of those rounds to Harrison and they were more impressed with Harrison’s counter punching than Charlo aggressive tactics. 

Dominic Breazeale scored a one-punch knockout of Carlos Negron in the ninth round of an entertaining heavyweight bout. Breazeale, with his eyes on Wilder’s belt and with Wilder in the audience watching, was hoping to make a statement.  While Breazeale dominated most of the fight, it was not an easy fight as Negron landed a few solid shots of his own as a counter puncher.  Breazeale nearly ended the bout at the end of the fourth round when he landed a big right as the bell ended the round, but in the fifth and throughout the sixth, Negron came back with counterpunches of his own and gave himself a chance at an upset.  Breazeale finally got control of the bout in the seventh round as his strength took hold and in the ninth, he ended with one big right hand.

Breazeale went on to challenge Wilder after the fight for a shot at his title but we won’t know whether Wilder will give him that shot or look for a bout with Anthony Joshua or rematch with Tyson Fury.  Regardless, Breazeale got himself in line for a title shot but right now, the heavyweight has a logjam as Fury draw with Wilder has produced a three way jam at the top with Fury established as a legitimate threat to Joshua-Wilder reign as the best heavyweight and Dillion Whyte late stoppage of Dereck Chisora puts him in the conversation as a title contender, maybe in front of Breazeale.

Continue reading Tony Harrison upsets Jermell Charlo … Breazeale by KO over Negron … Jermall Charlo by Decision over Matt Korobov

Canelo by “KO” over Fielding to win WBA Super Middleweight Belt

By Tom Donelson / Author, Member Boxing Writers Association of America

Last Saturday, Saul Canelo Alvarez defeated Rocky Fielding in easy style as he sent the taller Fielding down four times in three rounds and won a easy victory but the real story is Canelo’s next move as he is the main feature for the streaming DAZN  and in his first fight at 168 pound, he sold out the Mecca of boxing, Madison Square Garden.

DAZN roared to the number one free app as result of the Canelo fight.  It was not that most people didn’t expect any different result of the fight but it does show that Canelo still is a big attraction and capable of carrying DAZN.  Golden Boy Oscar De La Hoya noted that at 168 and 160, he has expanded his opponents including British Callum Smith and Gilberto Ramirez at Super Middleweight, a rematch with triple G or a fight with Jacobs, all big money winners. 

With the demise of HBO as a boxing powerhouse and the rise of other alternatives like DAZN, we are seeing boxing entering a new world of streaming.  Boxing is now moving forward on all fronts to bring fights to a new generation of boxing fans.