History | Feb 05 2020

On This Day: Jake LaMotta ends incredible unbeaten run of Sugar Ray Robinson

Matt Christie provides 10 facts about the night Jake LaMotta defeated the great Sugar Ray Robinson
Jake LaMotta

1. SUGAR RAY ROBINSON – or Ray “Sugar” Robinson as the International News Service called him at time – was a 3-1 favourite to repeat his victory over Jake LaMotta inside Detroit’s Olympia Stadium on February 5, 1943. The pair had fought in October the previous year, with welterweight Robinson using his substantial skill to deservedly outscore the bullish LaMotta over 10 rounds.

2. THE rematch was hosted by promoter Nick Londes at Detroit’s Olympia Stadium. The show was a sell-out with 18,930 fans attending to set a new record for the venue and Detroit’s biggest fight night since world heavyweight champion Joe Louis defeated Abe Simon two years before.

3. ROBINSON, based in New York, had never tasted defeat going into this contest, although the length of his win streak differs depending on the source. Ring Magazine had his run as high as 169 bouts (including 129 amateur bouts), although newspapers of the time recorded Robinson’s amateur record as 89-0 – making this bout his 130th.