1959-07-10 Don Jordan w pts 15 Denny Moyer, Meadows Racetrack, Portland, Oregon, USA - WORLD

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1959-07-10 Don Jordan w pts 15 Denny Moyer, Meadows Racetrack, Portland, Oregon, USA - WORLD. Referee: Harry Volk. Scorecards: 144-143, 147-144, 147-143. Bidding to become the youngest ever welterweight champion, Moyer (146½) showed his inexperience when going down on points against Jordan (147) and while he put up a game performance he was often bewildered at times as left jabs, hooks and uppercuts all found their target with regularity. Moyer started fast but after staggering Jordan in the second he was made to play second fiddle as the latter moved up through the gears. There were no knockdowns and although Jordan tried hard for one in the eighth when he opened up to have Moyer holding on grimly, he had to settle for the unanimous decision in his favour.

After Charley Scott defeated Garnet Hart (w rsc 9 on 19 October at the Convention Hall, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania) in a battle between the two leading contenders for Jordan’s title, the winner’s manager telegraphed a £25,000 offer to Jordan to make a title defence but received no reply. Scott’s case for a crack at the title was then put before the NBA Executive Committee.

Meanwhile, all kinds of rumours were going round about gangsters trying to buy a piece of Jordan, who took off for a couple of fights in South America. Having beaten Fernando Barreto (w pts 10 on 5 December at the Ibirapuero Stadium, Sao Paulo, Brazil), he next moved to Buenos Aires, Argentine where he was knocked out at the Luna Park Stadium by Federico Thompson inside four rounds on 12 December. Jordan, who blamed his defeat on a virus infection that had affected him for the last four months, did not mention the threats on his manager’s well-being.

Back in America, Scott was twice outpointed over ten rounds at Madison Square Garden, Manhattan, NYC, New York by Benny Kid Paret, on 18 December and 29 January 1960, while Carmen Basilio was booked to challenge Jordan for the title on 10 June. However, the NBA refused to recognise a Basilio fight and threatened to strip Jordan if he didn’t meet a contender named by them prior to that date.

This was followed by Jordan getting himself into trouble on a drink-drive charge and the NBA giving him a final warning that he must sign to meet Luis Rodriguez or another of their top four contenders by the end of February or be stripped. The NBA then relented and recognised a fight at Madison Square Garden between Paret and Thompson on 25 March as final eliminator, demanding that Jordan defend against the winner by the beginning of June. Following Paret and Thompson drawing over 12 rounds, the NBA gave their blessing to a Jordan defence against Paret on 27 May with the winner having to meet Thompson within 90 days.