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Thread: Cerdan/LaMotta

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    Cerdan/LaMotta

    Does anyone have a Detroit newspaper account(s) of this fight that they can post here??

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    Re: Cerdan/LaMotta

    There seems to be some question among boxing scribes(see Boxing Digest) as to whether or not Marcel was using only one arm. The film I have shows him using only his right. Said scribes also claim that Jake was handicapped with a broken knuckle, but the film shows him clearly whaling away with BOTH hands until the finish.

    Maybe if I can get a few Detroit nwsp accounts it will clear things up a bit.

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    Re: Cerdan/LaMotta

    bump

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    Re: Cerdan/LaMotta

    Can't help with the report Surf, though the fight shows clearly a wounded and injured Cerdan favouring the arm & shoulder, I would expect most reports to account for this.

    on an even playing field, I believe Cerdan beats Jake every time out!

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    Re: Cerdan/LaMotta

    Actually, Nat Fleischer poo poo'd Cerdan's shoulder injury in "The Ring", claiming Jake's "injured knuckle" somehow evened things out. Crazy.

    Pick up last month's Boxing Digest and read Thomas Myler's Cerdan article. It shows clearly that even now this stuff has had a trickle-down effect on writers. Myler gives credence to the whole "LaMotta was handicapped too" myth; a myth that is exposed as soon as one watches the film of the bout. Then again he ALSO claimed that Cerdan won a "controversial" decision over Anton Raadik, a fight that took place in Raadik's hometown and which the judges gave Marcel EVERY round but the final. The next day reports in the Chicago papers also gave it to Cerdan by a mile.

    I like Myler's writing, but more research is needed before these people write their articles!

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    Re: Cerdan/LaMotta

    IN the brief footage of the fight doesn't it look like Lamotta got off to a great start and was hammering him from the start?.It's been a while since i watched it but i recall Cerdan reeling around almost out on his feet and then being pushed over by Jake.

    Cerdan's style was not meant for fighting off the backfoot and Lamotta was the stronger bigger man.I've never thought he would match up well with Jake(or someone like Tiger)even without an injury.

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    Re: Cerdan/LaMotta

    LaMotta certainly got off to a fast start, though I can't see any evidence that Cerdan was almost out on his feet. Against the theory that this proves LaMotta would have beaten any version of Cerdan, one has to account for the fact that the rest of the fight was fairly close despite Cerdan's being reduced to a one-handed fighter.

    And the films I've seen certainly seem to confirm that he was hardly using his left for anything other than blocking and the occasional jab: see round 5 for a particularly striking illustration of this.

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    Re: Cerdan/LaMotta

    Indeed. Marcel was not even close to being out on his feet. Stunned? Sure. Jake came out firing like he'd never fired before, forcing Cerdan on the defensive. But LaMotta was hardly some big puncher who knocks out champions in a single round!

    Marcel Cerdan went almost 10 full rounds with Jake LaMotta with one arm. With two working mitts I would imagine he would do even better.

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    Re: Cerdan/LaMotta

    I disagree strongly on several accounts. Cerdan did win a controversial decision over Raadick. I have several reports of that fight from magazines and newspapers and they agree. LaMotta did very famously injure his knuckle either early in the fight or before the fight (reports differ) and in the extended highlites I have of the fight Cerdan is indeed using both arms.

    Ask Allan Rosenfeld, who was at the fight, of his opinions. He said LaMotta was supposed to be shot before the fight and when he took off his robe the audience was awed that he looked in top physical condition. He said there was no way LaMotta was losing that fight and he told me he didnt believe Cerdan's arm was injured, or as injured as stated.

    Another thing, you say that LaMotta came out firing like he had never fired before. This isnt true, early in LaMotta's career he was known as a hyper aggressive fighter, often compared to Harry Greb, for throwing dozens of punches. He was also one of the great body punchers of all time and it was his body attack that was really bothering Cerdan according to Rosenfeld. Rosenfeld told me about a LaMotta fight he had been to in Detroit in the 40s where LaMotta was working this guy over to the body. About the seventh round the guy, without a mark on him, starts pouring blood from his mouth. The fight was stopped due to internal injuries that LaMotta had given the guy from a body beating. That was the monster that Cerdan was in the ring with. Besides, who had Cerdan beaten that was of the calibre of LaMotta that night? An old Zale that had ducked and dodged LaMotta? An old Williams that LaMotta beat a month later too? His life and death fight with Raadick, who LaMotta had beaten EASILY a year earlier? I dont think Cerdan was ever beating LaMotta and neither did Rough and Tough Leon Thompson who was Zales sparring partner and had sparred with Cerdan, LaMotta, and Raadick as well. Dont forget that the most eager guy to face Cerdan in a rematch was LaMotta in order to disprove the injured arm story.

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    Re: Cerdan/LaMotta

    Bodyblow,

    No-one is denying LaMotta’s greatness here: Surf-Bat’s saying that LaMotta “came out firing like he’d never fired before” (whether it’s strictly accurate or not) does not mean that LaMotta didn’t often fight at a terrific pace.

    Similarly, I don’t see anyone saying that he wasn’t a great body-puncher, or denying that he faced tremendous opposition.

    On the other hand, with respect, you appear to be overstating your case more than a little:

    A) You pooh-pooh Cerdan’s opposition in comparison with LaMotta’s, and invite us to draw the conclusion that because Cerdan was “life and death” with Raadik, and both Zale and Williams were over the hill, Cerdan was somehow less than the genuine article in comparison with Jake.

    B) You imply that LaMotta’s being a great body puncher would have been too much for Cerdan because Allan Rosenfeld saw LaMotta inflict internal injuries on an unnamed fighter in Detroit.

    C) You also refer to Rosenfeld’s saying that LaMotta was said to be shot before the fight but that the crowd gasped at his statuesque physique when he took off his robe.

    D) You assert that LaMotta’s injury was real, that he did “very famously injure his knuckle.”

    E) You question whether Cerdan was really injured at all, referring to it as “the injured arm story”.

    F) You claim - again referring to Rosenfeld for confirmation - that Cerdan was using his left as though it was uninjured, or at least not significantly injured and that the fight films prove it.

    G) Finally, you imply that LaMotta’s assertion that he was eager to face Cerdan in a rematch constitutes some kind of proof.

    In a nutshell, LaMotta was a “monster” with vast experience and success against the greatest names in boxing, Cerdan was overrated with an inflated record whose biggest names were has-beens. To top it all off, it was really LaMotta who was injured, not Cerdan. And Allan Rosenfeld agrees with you.

    Doesn’t this strike you as slightly over-the-top? Anyhow, it’s big on assertion but short on facts. As a quick response to the points I listed above, I’d say:

    A) The Raadik fight was dealt with in considerable detail elsewhere on this site, and its controversial character had to do with Cerdan’s being floored thrice in the last round, owing, apparently, to exhustion in a fight he otherwise dominated. I’m not in a position to hold a strong opinion on this one, but the last round would logically account for an otherwise one-sided victory by Cerdan appearing controversial.

    The Raadik issue aside, LaMotta scored 30 kos in over 100 fights: a young LaMotta in the midst of his epic series with Robinson had been unable to stop a shopworn Zivic once in four outings (losing one to him and winning only one unanimously); he also lost to Dauthuille the same year he beat Cerdan. As for Cerdan’s record, you have conveniently omitted his victory over Abrams; and I don’t easily see LaMotta stopping even an aging Zale the way Cerdan did. In any case, I don’t see anything in their respective records to prove anything convincing about a LaMotta-Cerdan outcome one way or another.

    B) Presumably the way he disembowelled the Welterweight Zivic each of the four times they met.

    C) Shot at 28? Anyway, I’ve heard the same ooh-and-ahh! story about Cerdan’s physique at a previous fight in the U.S. - doesn’t prove anything either way, though.

    D) Most of us are not interested in whether he very famously injured his knuckle, but rather whether he did very truly injure his knuckle, and if so, when and how badly (and your “either early in the fight or before the fight” is neither very helpful nor particularly convincing to me).

    E) Well, all I can say is:
    1) it was claimed by Cerdan’s camp
    2) it is pretty universally acknowledged
    3) he was obviously fighting virtually one-handed
    4) he was thrown to the ground in a way consistent with the injury claim
    5) points 3 and 4 (above) are confirmed by the fight films
    I might also add that LaMotta’s knuckle claims don’t quite correspond to point 2 above and certainly don’t correspond to points 3, 4, 5.

    F) We obviously aren’t seeing the same things, then: in rounds 5, 8, 9, Cerdan might almost be a caricature of a one-handed fighter: since when does an orthodox fighter lead consistently with his right? I urge anyone interested in this issue to look at the films. If Rosenfeld disagrees, I can only say that there is a consensus of opinion - including those at the fight - that disagrees with him, just as there is a fairly general consensus of opinion that disagrees with your assessment of Cerdan. This isn’t proof - though it includes proof - but then, your post is pretty short on proof.

    G) Max Schmeling was also pretty confident going into Louis-Schmeling II: none of this proves anything.

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    Re: Cerdan/LaMotta

    Michael has already said everything, so I will limit my response here. But I will reiterate re: the Raadik fight that EVERY judge had Cerdan winning EVERY SINGLE ROUND but the last one. This is a verifiable fact. And the fight was in Raadik's hometown. I'm not sure what reports Bodyblow has read, but they obviously weren't Chicago newspapers, which reported Cerdan's dominance. There was nothing controversial whatsoever about the decision.
    Last edited by Surf-Bat; 05-08-2009 at 06:46 PM.

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    Re: Cerdan/LaMotta

    Im not sure where you are getting your facts. The Chicago Trib makes it very clear that by the fifth round Cerdan had tired perceptibly and Raadick was coming on with Cerdan backtracking in survival mode. Raddick wobbled and punished Cerdan several times before finally dropping him three times in the final round. The Sun-Times called the fight an "international incident and almost an international accident." The AP mentions that the announcement of the scores and victory were booed by the fans and Raadick was cheered as he left the ring. Cerdan went back to his dressing room violently ill from exhaustion suffered in the bout and had to be treated by doctors while still in his dressing room. Yup, sounds like a clear cut victory to me

    P.S. Cerdan took Raadick seriously enough that he had it stipulated in his contract that Raadick had to weigh over 160 so Cerdan wouldnt lose his European Middleweight title in the event of a loss.
    Last edited by bodyblow; 05-14-2009 at 07:22 PM.

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    Re: Cerdan/LaMotta

    The Chicago Tribune, written by Charles Bartlett.

    "Raadik was credited with only one round, the 10th..."

    "Referee Davy Miller scored the fight 53 to 47 for Cerdan, while judges George Kenny and Dr. E A Frankel favored him by respective tabulations of 55 to 45 and 53 to 47"

    This sounds pretty clear-cut to me. There is no indication of there being a robbery or anything even remotely resembling it. Cerdan dominated throughout sans 10th round.

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    Re: Cerdan/LaMotta

    Quote Originally Posted by hawk5ins
    Geez, what's he throw in the second round in that clip? Like 18 rights and 4 careful, pawing lefts?

    Tell me that guy wasn't handicapped!

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    Re: Cerdan/LaMotta

    Yes, he states he was credited by the judges, thats not in dispute, the actual decision is what was disputed. The validity of giving a man who turned tail and ran for the last SIX rounds of the fight and was knocked down a total of three times in the final round. So you mean to tell me that Raadick who pressed the fight from round five on, hurt Cerdan several times, and dropped him three times only deserved the final round??? Obviously the fans didnt think so... Bad decisions happen all the time, just because the officials voted that way does not make it so. My original comment was that he went life and death with Raadick and I stand by that. The guy was lucky to finish the fight and was VIOLENTLY ILL FROM EXHAUSTION immediately afterwards to the point of having to have a doctor called to his dressing room. Are you going to sit here and tell me he dominated Raadick? Whatever. Anyway, the whole argument got started in regards to LaMotta and the bottom line is that LaMotta was a top contender for the title before Graziano and Cerdan ever entered the weight division. Had LaMotta not been given a shot it would have been a sin. He got the shot and he kicked the shit out of Cerdan (which is also clear from the footage). Bottom line: He took the opportunity and ran with it. If Cerdan wasnt rugged enough to cope is that LaMotta's fault? Hell no, everybody has excuses.

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    Re: Cerdan/LaMotta

    The footage doesn't back you up, Bodyblow, because it appears to confirm Cerdan's injury quite clearly. You haven't begun to prove (or convince - me, at least) that Cerdan's injury was merely an "excuse".

    And if Cerdan was fighting one-handed, he was hardly getting "the shit kicked out of him" by LaMotta. If you really want to see shit getting kicked out of someone, try Robinson-LaMotta 6. Doesn't look quite the same, does it? Even though Jake had the use of both hands (though perhaps he hurt his knuckles in there somewhere).

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    Can we get full quotes from the Times and Trib

    That makes it clear that their view was that the Raadick decision was viewed as a bad one?

    I have no side either way on this as I have not researched it very much. But it seems as though we are getting two very different interperatations of what the Chicago papers said about the bout the next day.

    I think full and pertinent quotes will shed some light and allow the dummies (Me!) to interperate for themselves.

    Hawk

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    Hawk's point

    Agreed; but can we also get back to the original question: the newspaper reports of Cerdan-LaMotta?

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    Micheal

    You agree I'm a dummy?

    HA!

    Hawk

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    Re: Cerdan/LaMotta

    Hawk: I'm usually among the dummies in these questions - it's always nice to have good company!

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    Sweet!

    Hump up to the bar then and have a drink with me!

    Hawk

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    Re: Cerdan/LaMotta

    Heres a lil more background on the Raadick fight. Lew Burston who was Cerdan's representative in America thought Cerdan LOST THE FIGHT, he was so sure he stood in Cerdan's corner and cried before the decision was announced!!! Oh, and you may ask why Cerdan was fighting Raadick on his American tour anyway: Because he had refused to face either Ray Robinson or Jake LaMotta!!! Indeed he had even refused to face Steve Belloise! He was heavily criticized for refusing to face anyone other than Graziano (who was champ at the time) who could be seen as a competetive match. Based on his sorry showing against Raadick Ring magazine editor Nat Fliescher picked Graziano, LaMotta, and Robinson to KO Cerdan. This despite the fact that LaMotta had just lost to Billy Fox in what would be shown to be a dive later. Oh, why you may ask would Cerdan a french fighter get preferential treatment by officials over Raadick who was then fighting out of Chicago? Well, because he was imported by Mike Jacobs' Twentieth Century Sporting Club (the most powerful promotional firm in the United States at the time if not the world) and was having his record padded on his American tour for a title shot. So in effect, yes, Cerdan was the money fighter going into the Raadick fight.

    Its funny you dont think it was getting the shit kicked out of him because I see LaMotta raining blows on his body and jaw which prompted Ring magazine to say Cerdan absorbed a "brutal beating"... Guess Im not the only one. I also see Cerdan throwing short inside uppercuts with his left and keeping it very close to his body, looks like hes trying to protect from the brutal body beating he got in the first round to me.

    But lets say he did have an injury. Does that change anything? No. Does it mean I think Cerdan wasnt overrated? No. Does it mean I think he would have EVER beaten LaMotta? No. I understand the need for some people to give brownie points to fighters based on injuries or whatever. Its a tough, brutal sport which is all about inflicting enough damage on an opponent to make him submit. Sounds exactly like what happened to Cerdan that night which is why I say the right guy won.
    Last edited by bodyblow; 05-15-2009 at 01:12 PM.

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    Re: Cerdan/LaMotta

    "But lets say he did have an injury. Does that change anything? No."

    Not "Does that change everything?", mind, but "Does that change anything? No"

    There's more I could add in response to your latest post, but if this is the way you see things, what's the point?

    Hawk - anytime you're in the West of France (which is where I work), let me know: it's Cognac country here.

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    Re: Cerdan/LaMotta

    bodyblow what 'issues' of the Ring are you refering to?

    I have dam near every issue from 1938-56... and Nat Fliescher 'championed Cerdan as early as 38/39 having seeing him in Europe. also people always seem to overlook a couple of facts re: Cerdan.

    his defeats of Williams and Abrams, TOP tear for sure,
    Cerdan was near as OLD as Zale and fighting for near as long.
    LaMotta was a BIG MW and had that advantage over many others and last the LaMotta fight CLEARLY shows

    a push fall against Cerdan
    a wounded and 'favoured arm rarely used
    and LaMotta DIDN'T dominate nor could he put him away with such incredibly odds in his favour.

    CERDAN everytime, looks plain to see!

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    Re: Cerdan/LaMotta

    [QUOTE=bodyblow]Heres a lil more background on the Raadick fight. Lew Burston who was Cerdan's representative in America thought Cerdan LOST THE FIGHT, he was so sure he stood in Cerdan's corner and cried before the decision was announced!!!

    You're speculating here. How do you know what he was crying about? Maybe he was anticipating a robbery(which is what it would have been had they scored it for Raadik) since he was in Anton's hometown.

    Oh, why you may ask would Cerdan a french fighter get preferential treatment by officials over Raadick who was then fighting out of Chicago? Well, because he was imported by Mike Jacobs' Twentieth Century Sporting Club (the most powerful promotional firm in the United States at the time if not the world) and was having his record padded on his American tour for a title shot. So in effect, yes, Cerdan was the money fighter going into the Raadick fight.

    Georgie Abrams and Anton Raadik can hardly be called "padding". They were dangerous, TOP RANKED middleweights. In fact Abrams would fight Ray Robinson 5 months later and be on the receiving end of what most consider a VERY bad decision.

    So basically you're suggesting that Davy Miller- Chicago's TOP referee- was "on the take" for Mike Jacobs? AS WELL AS THE JUDGES? That's a pretty serious accusation there. Being that the scorecards were incredibly lopsided I would think that there would have been a public outcry on the level of the Billy Graham fiasco, as well as an investigation. I don't recall any investigation. Or any accusations levelled against Davy Miller, which would have made headlines.Sounds like you're speculating again


    Its funny you dont think it was getting the shit kicked out of him because I see LaMotta raining blows on his body and jaw which prompted Ring magazine to say Cerdan absorbed a "brutal beating"...

    The Ring is also the rag that claimed that LaMotta was handicapped, too. Fighting with only one good arm. The films clearly show otherwise, thus throwing much of The Rings credibility in covering this fight out the window.


    I'm digging into my Chicago paper archives and will address this more later.
    Last edited by Surf-Bat; 05-15-2009 at 10:51 PM.

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    C'mon here.

    The Times and the Tribune are being referenced here and PARTIALLY quoted.

    Present FULL and Pertinent quotes re Cerdan and Raadick and then we can see the scoop here.

    Hawk

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    Re: Cerdan/LaMotta

    [QUOTE=bodyblow]Im not sure where you are getting your facts. The Chicago Trib makes it very clear that by the fifth round Cerdan had tired perceptibly and Raadick was coming on with Cerdan backtracking in survival mode.

    No, it says that at the END of the fifth he looked tired(an indication of how sick he was) and BEGAN to backtrack. It does NOT say that "By the fifth round", thus indicating that he was going backwards from that point on to the end of the fight(your assertion). Nor does it say that this was his strategy from the 5th round on. Wouldn't this have been reported and used to deride Cerdan in Raadik's hometown paper?

    The AP mentions that the announcement of the scores and victory were booed by the fans and Raadick was cheered as he left the ring.

    Well yes, he was the hometown boy. He had a great final round and fought bravely throughout. And the decision was not booed so much as Cerdan's last round performance. Again, you'll have to show me proof that there was next-day outrage over the lopsided scoring. I have yet to see it.

    Cerdan went back to his dressing room violently ill from exhaustion suffered in the bout and had to be treated by doctors while still in his dressing room. Yup, sounds like a clear cut victory to me

    Cerdan was sick BEFORE the fight. JJ Johnston- IBRO's Chicago boxing expert- told me himself that Cerdan was vomiting in between rounds, not just in the dressing room. He knew Raadik well and has researched Chicago boxing better than anyone so I have no reason to disbelieve him.

    Cerdan never had any problems with his stamina and had no problem going 10, 12 and 15 rounds before. Isn't it rather odd that suddenly in the 5th round vs Raadik he's already tiring? It's not like he'd received a beating up to that point. What does that tell you? Read the Tribune- Raadik hadn't done much to him up to then. So why the sudden tiredness?


    P.S. Cerdan took Raadick seriously enough that he had it stipulated in his contract that Raadick had to weigh over 160 so Cerdan wouldnt lose his European Middleweight title in the event of a loss.

    Sounds smart to me. He'd already been robbed once vs Dellanoit so why wouldn't he be careful? Especially since he was going into the hometown fighter's Chicago backyard?
    Last edited by Surf-Bat; 05-15-2009 at 10:55 PM.

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    Re: C'mon here.

    Quote Originally Posted by hawk5ins
    The Times and the Tribune are being referenced here and PARTIALLY quoted.

    Present FULL and Pertinent quotes re Cerdan and Raadick and then we can see the scoop here.

    Hawk
    I have the article, but I don't know how to put it up here

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    Re: Cerdan/LaMotta

    Your initial point was that there was no controversy whatsoever and thats bullshit and you know it. You seem to be totally discounting the FACT that LaMotta was injured but this was a very famous incident and I even have a photo of him after the fight reading the newspaper with Vicki showing very clearly that his hand is grotesqually swollen and bruised. Its obvious you are going to believe what you want but the bottom line is still the same. The right guy won LaMotta-Cerdan and there was indeed controversy sorrounding the Cerdan-Raadick. Why you deny this I dont know but to sit here and criticise it is silly when you admit that the papers are anything but complementary to Cerdan. So you going to criticize Myler who is an accomplished writer with articles and books to his name, and who in this instance is right based on what?

    "You're speculating here. How do you know what he was crying about? Maybe he was anticipating a robbery(which is what it would have been had they scored it for Raadik) since he was in Anton's hometown. "

    Ok, sure, Im speculating... He was probably REALLY crying about how impressive Cerdan was in coming several thousand miles, handpicking an opponent, and barely surviving the fight...



    "Cerdan was sick BEFORE the fight. JJ Johnston- IBRO's Chicago boxing expert- told me himself that Cerdan was vomiting in between rounds, not just in the dressing room. He knew Raadik well and has researched Chicago boxing better than anyone so I have no reason to disbelieve him.

    Cerdan never had any problems with his stamina and had no problem going 10, 12 and 15 rounds before. Isn't it rather odd that suddenly in the 5th round vs Raadik he's already tiring? What does that tell you? Read the Tribune- Raadik hadn't done much to him up to that point. So why the sudden tiredness? "

    Show me ANY coverage that backs this up. No mention of Cerdan vomiting before the fight whatsoever and even if he was vomiting between rounds why assume it was anything other than damage done in the fight? Isnt that going a little too easy on Cerdan? Does that mean that when the little Aussie who was puking up blood between rounds against Marquez (cant remember his name) was sick before the fight, despite the hellacious body beating Marquez gave him?? Come on. Thats silly, give the fighter credit. Dont you think if Cerdan had enough where-wth-all to have the contract written in such a protective way that he would have called off the fight before hand if he'd been sick? Like I said, excuses are like assholes, everybody has one.


    "The Ring is also the rag that claimed that LaMotta was handicapped, too. Fighting with only one good arm. The films clearly show otherwise, thus throwing much of The Rings credibility in covering this fight out the window. "

    See this is where you and I differ. You give brownie points to a supposedly injured fighter for losing a one sided bout because he was supposedly injured and I give brownie points to a fighter who I have photos showing he was injured and who toughed it out, overcame his injury, and kicked the shit out of your fighter...



    And as for Glen: You blindly defend anyone who beat Bert Gilroy because he was your grandpap and anyone who beat him must be a super man because "he was robbed of being called the greatest fighter in history... blah blah blah" when in fact he was defeated at every stage of his career and often by subpar euro trash. Oh wait, thats right, if they beat Gilroy they werent trash... whatever. Are you going to tell me Williams, Zale, and Abrams werent past their primes???? Boy you really are looking at that era through rose colored glasses. How many fights did Williams, Zale, and Abrams win after facing Cerdan? Five maybe between all three? Thats REALLY impressive.

    "nor could he put him away with such incredibly odds in his favour."

    Really because the fight I have documented is a TKO stoppage which means LaMotta DID indeed put him away and thats something you cant take away from him...

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