1941-09-29 Joe Louis w rsc 6 (15) Lou Nova, Polo Grounds, Manhattan, NYC, New York, USA - WORLD

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1941-09-29 Joe Louis w rsc 6 (15) Lou Nova, Polo Grounds, Manhattan, NYC, New York, USA - WORLD. Referee: Arthur Donovan. A victim of ballyhoo, and nicknamed the ‘Yoga Man’ due to him being a student of that subject, although Nova (202½) had been backed to do well against the champion he failed to deliver. Despite having two wins over Max Baer on his record, right from the onset he spent most of his time on the back foot. For almost five rounds, with both men feeling each other out, even when Louis (202¼) occasionally landed a solid blow Nova merely backtracked. Finally, when Louis decided to go to work in the sixth a terrific right to the jaw dropped Nova in a heap. Nobody really expected Nova to get to his feet, but he did. Up at ‘nine’, Nova was battered from head to body by punch after punch as Louis laid into him, and when the referee eventually stopped the fight to rescue the challenger there was just one second of the round remaining. Saved from taking further punishment, his right eye bleeding profusely, Nova, who was helpless on the ropes when the stoppage came, had to be helped back to his corner, still complaining that he should have been allowed to carry on.

Meanwhile, on 28 November, at the Olympic Stadium, Detroit, Michigan, Lee Savold outpointed Jack Marshall over ten rounds in the final of a ‘White Hope’ tournament that was organised to find a suitable opponent for Louis. The recipient of a split-decision verdict, with The Ring magazine rating Savold at number 16 it would be almost ten years before he stepped into a ring with Louis.