1929-08-02 Sammy Mandell w pts 10 Tony Canzoneri, The Stadium, Chicago, Illinois, USA - WORLD

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1929-08-02 Sammy Mandell w pts 10 Tony Canzoneri, The Stadium, Chicago, Illinois, USA - WORLD. Referee: Dave Perry. Scorecards: 6-2, 6-3, 2-4. After having Mandell (135) on the verge of being kayoed in the second round, when Canzoneri (132½) was unable to take advantage of the situation the champion held on to win by a split decision, the referee voting for his opponent. It was only his outstanding ring generalship and superb condition that kept Mandell in the contest as the youngster, carrying a patch over his right eye to protect a cut received a few weeks earlier, strove to win by the short route. It was quite possibly the champion’s finest moment despite it being a close call.

Despite losing to Jimmy McLarnin in an overweight contest, after beating Canzoneri the champion had put five wins together by the end of the year. On the back of that, talks were already taking place in January 1930 for him to meet Al Singer at one of the New York ball parks during the summer. At the beginning of March it was announced that agreements for that fight were already in place, but there was just the small matter of Singer needing to reverse an earlier defeat at the hands of Ignacio Fernandez before matters could finally be concluded.

Meanwhile, on 10 March, the NBA reminded Mandell that he was currently out of time regarding defences. Further to that he was ordered to put his title on the line against King Tut, the top-rated man according to The Ring magazine, being told in no uncertain terms that if he did not sign for the fight within 30 days he would be stripped. The following day, however, Tut lost on a fifth-round disqualification against Bruce Flowers, which immediately put the NBA edict in the shade.

Although the NYSAC were earlier favouring Jack Kid Berg as the most logical opponent for Mandell, once Singer (135) had outpointed the 131lbs Fernandez at Madison Square Garden, Manhattan, NYC, New York on 23 May a day or so later it was announced that the match with Mandell would be going ahead in New York with the full backing of the authority. Singer, who had been a pro for only three years, had put together a 58-fight record, losing just six, while showing good punching power to go with classy boxing.