Category Archives: Bob Quackenbush

World Cup and Boxing Cross Paths

*** FLASHBACK  – This article originally appeared on dmboxing.com on June 10, 2010. The 2018 World Cup will be held in Russia, and runs from June 14 through July 18.


By Bob Quackenbush / for dmboxing.com

Friday, June 11, 2010 marks the beginning of a month-long sporting event that is viewed by more people around the globe than any other, including the Olympic Games.  What is this event?  The World Cup soccer tournament.  Held every four years, this spectacle captivates audiences from Asia and Africa, to North and South America, and, of course, Europe.  People from all walks of life will be watching on everything from fuzzy-imaged old TV’s to the fanciest LCD/HD big screens, as well as in person at stadiums throughout the host nation which is South Africa.

Why would an article about soccer (or “football” as it is known in most of the world) show up on a boxing website?  The reason is that the two sports crossed paths over thirty-two years ago in a special way.  On October 1, 1977, the great Pele, generally acknowledged as the most outstanding soccer player of all time, was wrapping up his career at Giants Stadium playing his final game with the New York Cosmos of the old North American Soccer League.  A true ambassador of the sport, Pele, who had played his entire career for Santos F.C. of Brazil, and for the Brazilian National Team, came to the United States in 1975 to play for the Cosmos and to give the sport a “shot in the arm” in the USA. This match was his testimonial game, as the Cosmos faced his former club, Santos, with Pele playing one half for each team.

Continue reading World Cup and Boxing Cross Paths

The Olympic Auditorium: A Look Back at a Grand Venue (Part 2 of 2)

I am delighted to bring you a feature article that was published on dmboxing.com in August 2012, and is one of my favorites.  It is about a historic venue that I remember growing up as a kid; I attended many boxing and wrestling matches there.  My friend Bob Quackenbush captures it all in his excellent piece.  This is part two, as part one was just posted last week for your viewing.

By Bob Quackenbush / dmboxing.com

olympic auditorium 1970s The Olympic Auditorium: A Look Back at a Grand Venue  (Part 2 of 2)

Though boxing was the sport that put the Olympic Auditorium on the map, legions of young fans in the 1950’s, 60’s, and 70’s remember this place as the hallowed ground of Championship Wrestling.  Throughout the 1930’s, matches were held there regularly; but with the growth of television, later wrestlers such as Gorgeous George, Lou Thesz, Count Billy Varga, Freddie Blassie, the Destroyer, Mr. Moto, Mil Mascaras, Bobo Brazil, John “the Golden Greek” Tolos, Harold Sakata (who played the role of Odd Job in the movie “Goldfinger”), and Rocky Johnson (father of Duane “the Rock” Johnson) became household names.  Presided over by an actor-turned newscaster-turned sports announcer, the great Dick “Whoa Nellie” Lane, they were incredible shows in the pre-WWF days.

Continue reading The Olympic Auditorium: A Look Back at a Grand Venue (Part 2 of 2)

The Olympic Auditorium: A Look Back at a Grand Venue (Part 1 of 2)

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I am delighted to bring you a feature article that was posted/published on dmboxing.com in August 2012, and is one of my favorites.  It is about a historic venue that I remember growing up as a kid; I attended many boxing and wrestling matches there.  My friend Bob Quackenbush captures it all in his excellent piece. This is part one, with part two to come next week for your viewing.

By Bob Quackenbush /  dmboxing.com

In the world of championship boxing, the arenas which host the bouts quite often become nearly as famous as the warriors which graced their canvas stages.  Those which come to mind are legendary venues such as Madison Square Garden in New York City, Cobo Arena in Detroit, the Blue Horizon in Philadelphia, and more recently, the Las Vegas sites such as Caesar’s Palace, the MGM Grand, and Mandalay Bay.

Continue reading The Olympic Auditorium: A Look Back at a Grand Venue (Part 1 of 2)

The Olympic Auditorium: A Look Back at a Grand Venue (Part 2 of 2)

by Bob Quackenbush / dmboxing.com

 

Though boxing was the sport that put the Olympic Auditorium on the map, legions of young fans in the 1950’s, 60’s, and 70’s remember this place as the hallowed ground of Championship Wrestling.  Throughout the 1930’s, matches were held there regularly; but with the growth of television, later wrestlers such as Gorgeous George, Lou Thesz, Count Billy Varga, Freddie Blassie, the Destroyer, Mr. Moto, Mil Mascaras, Bobo Brazil, John “the Golden Greek” Tolos, Harold Sakata (who played the role of Odd Job in the movie “Goldfinger”), and Rocky Johnson (father of Duane “the Rock” Johnson) became household names.  Presided over by an actor-turned newscaster-turned sports announcer, the great Dick “Whoa Nellie” Lane, they were incredible shows in the pre-WWF days.

Continue reading The Olympic Auditorium: A Look Back at a Grand Venue (Part 2 of 2)

The Olympic Auditorium: A Look Back at a Grand Venue (Part 1 of 2)

by Bob Quackenbush / dmboxing.com


In the world of championship boxing, the arenas which host the bouts quite often become nearly as famous as the warriors which graced their canvas stages.  Those which come to mind are legendary venues such as Madison Square Garden in New York City, Cobo Arena in Detroit, the Blue Horizon in Philadelphia, and more recently, the Las Vegas sites such as Caesar’s Palace, the MGM Grand, and Mandalay Bay.

For boxing fans in Southern California, though, one name stands out when it comes to the sweet science:  the Olympic Auditorium in Los Angeles.  The edifice was constructed in 1924 in preparation for the upcoming Olympic Games of 1932 (the location at 1801 South Grand Avenue led to its later name of the Grand Olympic Auditorium). At the opening ceremonies on August 25, 1925, celebrities such as screen legend Rudolph Valentino and boxing champion Jack Dempsey were in attendance.  Dempsey had also turned over a spade of soil at the official ground breaking ceremony prior to construction.

Continue reading The Olympic Auditorium: A Look Back at a Grand Venue (Part 1 of 2)

World Cup and Boxing Cross Paths 


By Bob Quackenbush / for dmboxing.com

Friday, June 11, 2010 marks the beginning of a month-long sporting event that is viewed by more people around the globe than any other, including the Olympic Games.  What is this event?  The World Cup soccer tournament.  Held every four years, this spectacle captivates audiences from Asia and Africa, to North and South America, and, of course, Europe.  People from all walks of life will be watching on everything from fuzzy-imaged old TV’s to the fanciest LCD/HD big screens, as well as in person at stadiums throughout the host nation which is South Africa.

Why would an article about soccer (or “football” as it is known in most of the world) show up on a boxing website?  The reason is that the two sports crossed paths over thirty-two years ago in a special way.  On October 1, 1977, the great Pele, generally acknowledged as the most outstanding soccer player of all time, was wrapping up his career at Giants Stadium playing his final game with the New York Cosmos of the old North American Soccer League.  A true ambassador of the sport, Pele, who had played his entire career for Santos F.C. of Brazil, and for the Brazilian National Team, came to the United States in 1975 to play for the Cosmos and to give the sport a “shot in the arm” in the USA. This match was his testimonial game, as the Cosmos faced his former club, Santos, with Pele playing one half for each team.
Continue reading World Cup and Boxing Cross Paths