History | Oct 26 2018

On This Day: Rocky Marciano snatches the torch from Joe Louis

Joe Louis did not fight again after being destroyed by Rocky Marciano, writes Matt Bevan
Rocky Marciano
Marciano-Louis

ROCKY MARCIANO retired from boxing with a perfect 49-0 record, with 43 knockouts, and he is the only world heavyweight champion to retire from boxing undefeated. But there was always one fight, amongst the many fights of the year he was involved in, that stuck with the big punching heavyweight from Brockton, Massachusetts the most.

ON October 26, 1951, Rocky Marciano entered the ring at Madison Square Garden and looked across the ring to see his boyhood idol, “The Brown Bomber” Joe Louis staring back at him, hoping to regain the title he had once held during an illustrious career.

IT was the Brockton Blockbuster’s 38th fight and he was closing on the world title shot, but Marciano knew it would be tough from the off, with Louis’ reach giving him a huge advantage. The slugger was only 5ft 10ins and had the shortest reach of any heavyweight champion in history at 68ins.

 

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