Name: Joey Lupo
Birth Name: Joe Rulli
Nationality: US American
Hometown: Lodi, New Jersey, USA
Boxing Record: click
According to John Bush's article in the August 11, 2005 Asbury Park Press, Joe Rulli took the last name "Lupo" from a neighborhood friend.
Lupo began his amateur boxing career under the name Jockey Lupo. Lupo joined Saulino's Gym in Lodi, New Jersey, and his trainers were Fred and Pat Saulino. Fighting as an amateur, Lupo was a two-time Diamond Gloves Boxing Champion, winning the 112-pound division in 1948, and the 126-pound division in 1949. Lupo was voted "Outstanding Open Class Boxer" for the tournament. He was also a two-time New Jersey Golden Gloves boxing winner, and defeated Ivory DeVore in 1949 to become the 126 pound New Jersey State Amateur Champion. His best amateur wins were over Baby Rocky Graziano,Red Mosley, and 126 pound National Champion Tony Roman.Lupo ended his amateur career with a 54-4 record.
In 1950, Lupo turned pro as a welterweight. His manager was Vic Marsillo of Newark. Lupo became a stable mate of world-rated welterweight, Charlie Fusari. He was one of Fusari's chief sparring partners while Fusari trained for his title shot against Sugar Ray Robinson.
In his second fight, fighting as Johnny Lupo,he defeated Joe Giacobbe in Madison Square Garden in New York. On March 5, 1952, Lupo scored the biggest win of his brief career by scoring a second-round technical knockout over former world junior welterweight champion Tippy Larkin.
At the age of 20, while training for a fight with Vince Martinez, Lupo was suddenly stricken with spinal polio, and his promising career ended. But due to his physical conditioning, Lupo was able to recover enough to walk with a cane.
Though his professional ring career was brief, he still became a member of the New Jersey Boxing Hall of Fame.
Lupo's later life seems to have some twists and turns. One report has him dying in 1971. However, there is a well-known personal trainer in South Florida named Joe Lupo. Articles about the South Florida Lupo say he was a former professional boxer, so it would seem that it's the same person. If so, Lupo has run a highly respected and successful personal training business and gym for over 20 years.
In a May, 2008 story in the Miami Herald, Lupo was recognized for his amazing physical condition. Lupo, who owns and operates Joe Lupo Fitness Centers in Miami Beach and Miami, Florida, does 2,000 sit-ups a day, and 200 push-ups. He says he stands 5 feet 10 inches and weighs 150 pounds.
Lupo is married and has two children and two grandchildren.
- Miami Herald, "Aging Well": Joe Lupo. May 20, 2008.
- New Jersey Boxing Hall of Fame.
- Asbury Park Press, August 11, 2005 by John Bush.