1906-09-03 (133lbs) Joe Gans w disq 42 (finish) Battling Nelson, The Arena, Goldfield, Nevada, USA
1906-09-03 (133lbs) Joe Gans w disq 42 (finish) Battling Nelson, The Arena, Goldfield, Nevada, USA. Referee: George Siler. In a fight that introduced Tex Rickard as a boxing promoter at the highest level, Gans once again achieved general recognition as the 133lbs champion after he defeated the main claimant, Nelson, who was effectively the ‘white’ champion at the weight. At the time of the finish Gans was out in front, having smashed away and cut Nelson up all night, while the latter employed rough tactics, butting and going low being top of the list. Despite this, Gans showed great sportsmanship when picking Nelson up from the two knockdowns he he had inflicted, while the crowd were on his side when he was fouled. The first 20 rounds were very fast, but after that it slowed as both men looked to revitalize. By the 30th Nelson’s left eye was closed, and in the 33rd Gans broke his right hand, but regardless of that the latter continued to find his rival with solid jabs to the head. The fight came to an end in the 42nd when Nelson, who had been warned on numerous occasions and was rank tired, deliberately punched Gans in the groin. When the black fighter sunk to the floor in pain the referee had no alternative other than disqualify Nelson, the crowd being almost fully behind the decision.
For Gans it had been a big price to pay. Forced to make 133lbs ringside, something he did with great difficulty, many believe that this action finally ruined his health beyond repair after the tuberculosis that would eventually ravage his body and kill him set in.