New add-on: The Funny & the Amusing

Our newest add-on the “Funny & Amusing” is filled with informative personal stories, some sounding mythical and others controversial. Interspersed will be jokes and trivia. Here’s hoping you’ll enjoy these snippets and pass them along in your daily travels.

In sports, there’s always someone waiting in the wings to replace you

Before World War I, Sid Burn was an above average boxer. During his prime, he hired a young sparring partner by the name of Ted “Kid” Lewis. Every time there was a sparring session, Burn would beat the snot out of Lewis.

Ted "Kid" Lewis

Years later, Lewis became the Welterweight champion, and arranged to have Sid Burn in his camp. By this time Burn was over the hill. Lewis wasted no time beating the crap out of Burn just as he had done to him years before.

A few years passed and there was another young fighter by the name of Roland Todd who joined in their training. He soon learned all of Lewis’ weaknesses. On February 15, 1923, Todd fought Lewis for the European and Commonwealth Middleweight title. Lewis never had a chance.

Most notable accomplishments in the sport of boxing

Youngest world champion:

On March 6, 1976, Wilfred Benitez (25-0) became the youngest world champion in boxing history, capturing the WBA junior welterweight title at the age of 17 years and 5 months after earning a split decision victory over 30 year-old Antonio Cervantes (74-9-3). Benitez first fought as a professional at the tender age of 15. He went on to face some of the toughest competitors in the sport: Tony Petronelli, Carlos Palomino, Sugar Ray Leonard, Roberto Duran, Thomas Hearns, Mustafa Hamsho and Davey Moore.


Oldest World Champion/Heavyweight Champion:

With only two months and five days till his 46th birthday, George Foreman stepped in the ring to face Michael Moorer (35-0-0), the reigning WBA and IBF World Heavyweight Champ. For the majority of the fight Foreman was taking a beating. His only respite came when Moorer slowed down and appeared to be going through the motions. While resting, George measured his opponent. By the eighth round Moorer had a sizable lead and had thrown 120 more punches, the kind that shut your opponent’s eyes. In the 10th round, Foreman started doubling up on his punches. The looping left was followed by an even harder overhand right. One combo was followed a second and suddenly Moorer was on his back. With the stunning knockout victory, Big George became the oldest boxer in history to win the heavyweight crown and regain the title he had lost 20 years earlier.


Youngest Heavyweight Champ

In the build up for his fight with Trevor Berbick, the reigning WBC Heavyweight Champ, Mike Tyson told the Press: “I’ll win the title as surely as Tuesday follows Monday.” The quirky, unambiguous remark surprised people. The youngster from New York needed less than six minutes to make good on his boast.

A long right hand at the start of the fight had Berbick rocking back on his heels, then covering up, and suddenly Tyson’s left-right combinations sent the champ down for the first time. Berbick survived round one, but it was more of the same in Round two. Tyson continued to hit Berbick on the head and body before landing his power shot to the body followed by a looping left hook to the temple. Berbick again crashed to the canvas as if his legs had been cut from beneath him. Like a staggering drunk he tried several times to regain his footing and on his third try, while reaching for the turnbuckle, fell into the arms of referee Mills Lane, who waved off the fight.

That’s when the whole world stood up and took notice of “Iron Mike” who had just become the youngest Heavyweight Champion ever at the age of 20 years, four months and 22 days.

Boxer with the most KO victories in his career

Archie Moore (right) poses for a photo with Priest "Tiger" Smalls

Heavyweight legend, Archie Moore, from San Diego, CA, had a professional record of 194 wins, 26 losses, 8 draws, 1 No Contest with an amazing 141 wins by knockout over a career spanning 29 years (1936-1965).

True leaders when it comes to consecutive knockouts

From 1995-2001, over six long years, Acelino Freitas scored 29 straight KO’s against some very stiff competition.

Alfonso Zamora matched his output from 1973-1977.

Carlos Zarate had a total of 66 KO’s, 28 straight from 1974-1978.

From November, 1996 until April, 2000, Vitali Klitschko scored 27 straight KO’s and only three of his opponents had a losing record.

Henry “Homicide Hank” Armstrong scored 101 KO’s, 27 in a row from 1937-1938. Of those 27 victims only three had a losing record.

Michael Moorer, the former light-heavy and heavyweight champ, scored 26 straight KO’s from his debut in 1988 until 1992.

In-Chul Baek, the former world super middleweight champ from South Korea, scored 26 tough KO’s from 1980-1983.

Aaron Pryor had 26 KO victories in a row from 1977-1984 in wins over Sang-Hyun Kim, Dujuan Johnson, Antonio Cervantes, and twice over Alexis Arguello.

John “The Beast” Mugabi took no prisoners over a six year period from 1980-1986. He scored 25 straight KO’s.

Victor “The Destroyer” Oganov (1998-2006) had 25 KOs, only six got out of the fourth round. Sixty-four of his 80 amateur bouts were won by knockout.

The following had 24 straight KOs: Scott Daley (1986-1998), Mac Foster (1966-1970), Alex Stewart (1986-1989), Earl Hargrove (1979-1984) and George Foreman (1970-1974).

Julio Cesar Chavez and Edison Miranda had 20, Mike Tyson 19.

Boxer with the most consecutive first round knockouts

In 2006, Edwin Valero scored his 17th consecutive first-round win, eclipsing the undocumented 100-year-old record established by Young Otto in 1906, who reportedly won 16 straight matches by a first round knockout.

On March 25, 2006, Valero’s streak ended when he knocked his opponent out in the second round. Since that time, Tyrone “the One” Brunson of Philadelphia, PA. broke Valero’s record by scoring 19 straight first-round wins over boxers with ugly records. After 22 bouts of facing nothing but tomato cans (only one of Brunson’s former opponents had more wins than losses), Brunson finally faced a boxer with a decent record and lost. “The One” never got out of the third round.


Longest reign as a World Champion



Joe Louis (aka “The Brown Bomber”) was the Heavyweight Champion of the World for 11 years and seven months. Birth name: Joseph Louis Barrow, Louis had the perfect build for being a boxer. He stood 6’2” tall and had a 76” reach. There was never a draw decision in any of his bouts. During World War II, Louis became the first active World Heavyweight Champ to serve in the U.S. Military. The list of his many accomplishments is too lengthy to mention here.


Biggest Crowd ever to attend a boxing match

132,247 people witnessed the Julio Cesar Chavez versus Greg Haugen bout plus three more World Title fights at the Aztec Stadium in Mexico City, Mexico, on February 20, 1993. In the build up for the fight there was a Haugen quote describing Chavez’s past opposition: “All he’s ever fought are Tijuana taxi drivers.”

Haugen ended up taking a vicious beating in that fight, being dropped in the opening seconds of round one and then being pounded throughout the fight before it was mercifully stopped in the 5th.

Biggest live gate and largest PPV fight purse

The live gate of $19 million for Oscar De La Hoya versus Floyd Mayweather, Jr. broke the Nevada record of $16.8 million for the 1999 Lennox Lewis vs. Evander Holyfield bout which still holds the record for live gate when you adjust for inflation.

The most purchases for a Single Pay-Per-View Event?

The 2.15 million purchases for the May 5, 2007 Oscar De La Hoya versus Floyd Mayweather Jr. fight, surpassed the old record of 1.99 million purchases for the June 28, 1997 Mike Tyson versus Evander Holyfield “Bite Fight.”

The Manny Pacquiao versus Antonio Margarito matchup on November 13, 2010 generated 1.15 million pay-per-view buys, which created $64 million in pay-per-view revenue. Don’t forget to add that amount to the gate receipts generated by the announced 41,000 attendance at Dallas Stadium.

Easiest boxing trivia question to answer?

Who’s the only boxer in history to win a world championship in eight different weight classes?

On November 13, 2010, Manny Pacquiao (53-3-2, with 38 KO’s) defeated Antonio Margarito (38-7-0, with 27 KO’s) to become the     only boxer to perform such an amazing fete.

Inventor of the “The Scotch Wop”

Johnny Dundee (106-35-23), born Giuseppe Carrora in Sciacca, Sicily, Italy, is a former World Featherweight and Junior Lightweight Champion. He’s also the boxer who introduced the maneuver known as “The Scotch Wop.” The dangerous technique involves bouncing your body off the ropes to go flying back at your opponent with an amplified force.

On January 29, 1917, in a fight against Willie Jackson (56-30-5) who was 6-1-1 at the time, Dundee incorporated his wop. Jackson was ready for him and delivered a straight right to Dundee’s open chin. Down went Dundee for the count. After his embarrassing performance, Dundee faced Jackson nine additional times and ended up with a record of 3-3-4 against him.

The boxer who went missing after his meeting with mob boss Al Capone

In 1926, a 29 year old by the name of Berdmondsey Billy Wells, an impressive welterweight, was scheduled to fight Mickey Walker, then 25, the welterweight champion in Chicago. Before their match, Wells met with the legendary gangster, Al Capone. It’s unclear what the gentlemen talked about, but Mr. Wells never appeared for his scheduled bout and the fight had to be cancelled.

During this period, many of the fights were arranged so that the outcome was never in doubt. Walker, who had a reputation for partying hard and occasionally sidestepping the need to be in the gym, was not ready to face Wells.




Criminal behavior in the ring
On June 16, 1983, Luis Resto (20-8-2) surprisingly defeated the favorite Billy Collins (14-0-0) on the undercard of the Roberto Duran versus Davey Moore Fight Card. At the conclusion of their fight, Collins complained to his father and trainer, Billy Collins, Sr., that he thought Resto’s gloves had less padding in them. His father went immediately to confiscate Resto’s gloves. The boxing commissioners soon discovered that Resto’s trainer, Panama Lewis, had removed some padding from Resto’s gloves.

Lewis had also been suspected of cheating before this match when he trained Aaron Pryor for his first fight with Alexis Arguello. Between the 13th and 14th rounds in a fight most boxing fans consider one of the greatest of all time, Lewis was heard asking for “the drink” in Pryor’s corner. They gave him a bottle, and he said, “NOT that one, I want the one I mixed…” This created quite a stir, but no one knew exactly what happened and adding to the controversy was the discovery that the Miami Boxing Commission failed to administer a post-fight urine test.

The broken promise

In 1908, Tommy Burns knew his opponent, Jewey Smith, would never resist an extended fight. Before their bout, both made a pact they would make it a long fight to satisfy the Paris audience where the fight was being held. Then, in round one, a spark from one of the cameraman’s flash bulbs ignited a decoration at ringside. Seeing the fire and getting panicky, Burns forgot all about his deal with Smith and hit him with a powerful shot on the chin to knock him out. With Smith lying flat, Burns escaped to save himself.

Injuries don’t always occur in the ring

Max Schmelling earned his European Heavyweight Title belt in 1939, and then bad luck forced him to retire due to the injuries received after becoming a paratrooper on the Island of Crete.

The one boxer the Brown Bomber truly feared

Jersey Joe Walcott (right) stands over the Brown Bomber, Joe Louis, and dares the champ to get up.

Twice, Jersey Joe Walcott fought for the heavyweight title against the legendery Joe Louis. On both occasions (1946 and 1948) he put up a great fight going 15 rounds in the first match and 11 rounds in the second. In the first fight, a ringside poll of 32 boxing writers had 21 scoring the bout for Walcott, only 10 scoring it for Louis and 1 scoring it a draw. In that fight, Louis was down in both the first and fourth rounds. In their rematch, Louis was knocked down in the third round. After that second fight Louis announced his premature retirement.

Ten years later, when Louis was preparing for his fight with Max Schmelling, Walcott was hired to be a sparring partner. After working only two days, Walcott was fired. Why? In training he knocked Louis off his feet three times.

Hey Mikey! I got your patent right here!

Local San Diego boxer Ernie "Too Slick" Johnson poses for a photo with ring announcer Michael Buffer.

For years, ring announcer Michael Buffer used the expression, “Let’s get ready to rumble!” in his opening address at Boxing Shows. Even though the remark isn’t profound, or in the least bit witty, he felt so proprietorial, so insecure that someone might start using his short, pithy saying, that he registered it with the U.S. patent office.  The true meaning of the word “rumble” might surprise you. Buffer’s use is in no way grammatically correct. Rumble is defined as an informal street fight between gangs or large groups, not two men in a formal setting.

An example of a rumble would be the disturbance at the nation’s capitol on October 29, 1991. The fight between heavyweights Riddick “Big Daddy” Bowe and Elijah “Phoenix Steel” Tillery, started out fine. Then, midway through Round 1, Tillery was hurt by an overhand right, then a left hook that sent him down at 2:52. After getting back on his feet, Tillery received a mandatory eight-count.

Even though it appeared the round was over after that eight count, the two fighters were allowed to continue for another 10-15 seconds. After the added time was allotted and in retaliation for a sneaky jab thrown after the bell, Tillery started to kick Bowe. As a melee ensued, Tillery was grabbed from behind by Bowe’s manager Rock Newman who then pulled him back over the ropes and onto the floor below. The referee ruled Tillery disqualified for “a flagrant kick.” In the meantime, the disappointed audience began to create their own havoc. This is the type of rowdy behavior that scholars who teach linguistics would refer to as “a rumble.”

What ever happened to Tillery, the kickboxer? On December 13, 1991, he fought Bowe again, this time in Atlantic City. Tillery lost again, this time by TKO at 1:14 of the fourth round. When things looked their bleakest, Tillery changed his name to el-Hajj Abdul Nazir and made an Islamic pilgrimage to Mecca in preparation for a fight with former heavyweight champ James “Bonecrusher” Smith. The sixth round TKO loss to Smith ended his career. In March of 2008, Tillery was sentenced to nine years in prison for hiding a sawed-off shotgun inside a toy alligator in the back of his pickup truck.

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