Connect with us

Sugar Ray Robinson: 35 Years Ago the Boxing World Lost a Pound-For-Pound Great

Sugar Ray Robinson: 35 Years Ago the Boxing World Lost a Pound-For-Pound Great

Boxing News

Sugar Ray Robinson: 35 Years Ago the Boxing World Lost a Pound-For-Pound Great

Sugar Ray Robinson: 35 Years Ago the Boxing World Lost a Pound-For-Pound Great

The legendary Sugar Ray Robinson (174-19-6-2 NC, 109 KOs) was born as Walker Smith Jr. in Ailey, Georgia, moving to New York City after his parents separated, which led to him dropping out of school and discovering his love for boxing at an early age, which led him on the journey to become one of the greatest boxers of all time. Robinson passed away on April 12, 1989, aged 67, and 35 years since the boxing world lost a great, we wanted to pay homage to a pound-for-pound legend.

Sugar Ray Robinson: Paying Homage to a Pound-For-Pound Great

Sugar Ray Robinson the Early Years

Following his discovery of Boxing, Robinson went on to have a wonderful amateur career, with a reported record of 85-0 in the unpaid ranks. His amateur career saw him win two gold medals in the New York Golden Gloves in the featherweight division in 1939 and the lightweight division in 1940 respectively. He also won two Intercity Golden Gloves gold medals in the featherweight and lightweight divisions in 1939 and 1940 respectively.

First Defeat and Gaining Revenge

Robinson amassed a perfect 40-0 record before his first defeat came against Jake LaMotta on February 5, 1943. This rivalry was to become one of the more prominent during that period of boxing, with all six fights between the two being close.

Read More: Top Boxing Fights At Madison Square Garden: Knockout Tour Through History

LaMotta dropped Robinson on multiple occasions – but the Georgia-born fighter had enough ring IQ to win five fights with LaMotta. Robinson’s speed and precision often caused his opponents trouble and it was no different during this rivalry.

Carmen Basilio Rematch

After losing their first encounter by split decision, Robinson took the immediate rematch and won by split decision to regain the NYSAC, NBA, and The Ring middleweight titles.

Read More: 10 Legendary Boxers Fighting Out of New York

The rematch victory ensured he created history becoming the first boxer in history to win a divisional world championship five times. It wasn’t just Robinson’s will that got him over the line in these big fights, it was his versatility to change styles depending on opponents and the flow of the fight.

Unbeaten Streak from 1943 to 1951

After losing for the first time in his professional career against LaMotta, Robinson regrouped and went on an unbelievable run, remaining unbeaten from 1943-1951, before losing to Randolph Turpin, leaving him on a record of 129-2-2, 1 NC. 

Read More: Five Most Memorable Marvelous Marvin Hagler Fights

Following the end of the streak, he gained revenge against Turpin and was involved in many great fights, including the rematch against Gene Fullmer On May 1, 1957, which he won by fifth-round KO. The streak just reiterated what a phenomenal pugilist Robinson was.

Fighting Style

Robinson was versatile – able to fight in almost any style, whether fighting inside or outside. He threw his punches with speed and precision, which often meant he dictated the pace of fights. He threw with spite in both hands from unusual angles often confusing his opponents. His versatility was undoubtedly his biggest weapon, adapting to whatever style he was facing, making him a nightmare to oppose.

Continue Reading

Freelance Writer and Digital Marketer, spending most of his time waiting for the Tyson Fury vs Usyk announcement. Also watches YouTube videos of Lennox Lewis fights on a daily basis.

More in Boxing News

To Top