Joe Louis vs. Eddie Simms

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Louis and Simms at the weigh-in.
Referee Arthur Donovan stops the fight.

1936-12-14 : Joe Louis 202¼ lbs beat Eddie Simms 195 lbs by TKO at 0:26 in round 1 of 10


LOUIS SCORES QUICKEST KAYO
By Charles Dunkley, Associated Press, December 15, 1936

Joe Louis, 10 years ago an Alabama cotton picker at 10 cents a day, added another $20,000 to his bankroll today to bring his 1936 ring earnings up to $300,000 for six fights.

Twenty thousand dollars for landing just one devastating left hook—that was the sum the frozen-faced Detroit negro received for accomplishing the quickest knockout of his sensational career—paralyzing Eddie Simms in exactly 18 seconds of a bout scheduled to go 10 rounds.

The dramatic finish stunned the 11,000 persons in Cleveland's public hall last night. The spectators who paid $50,000 to witness the charity fight sponsored by the Cleveland News hardly had settled in their seats to enjoy the battle before it was over.

Simms, bearing a broken, twisted nose as scars of other battles, fought a fearless, courageous fight before the disastrous punch overtook him. He came charging out of his corner crouched low, his left hand extended.

Simms landed half a dozen blows, first driving lefts to Louis' body and then shifting to the face. Louis danced away with the 195-pound Cleveland heavyweight pressing after him. Simms suddenly lashed out with another left to the face and a right to the head.

Louis shook his head for an Instant and then, like a panther, sprang. He drove his gloved left fist to Simms' jaw and it landed with a thud and with the speed of a bullet.

Simms went down flat on his back, his legs and arms in the air. He twisted and struggled on the floor of the ring, trying to rise.

He drew his legs under him and three times tried to clutch the ropes of the ring to bring himself to his feet. Finally, he caught the middle rope and pulled himself up at the count of eight, 26 seconds after the bout started. He was swaying like a drunken man. His eyes were glassy.

Quick-thinking Arthur Donovan, of New York, the referee, threw his arms around Simms and waved the Brown Bomber to his corner as Louis was moving in for the kill. It was the first time Simms had been knocked out in 52 battles over a period of five years.

It will go down in the record book as a technical knockout, for Donovan stopped it because he believed he was justified.

"Let's take a walk," Simms screamed at Donovan while the referee was shaking the boxer's head, trying to get the cobwebs out of it. "I'll go any place you say. How about going up on the roof? Let's take a run up the aisle."

Donovan said he felt justified in stopping the fight because "another blow might have resulted fatally."

"That one punch simply knocked Simms crazy," he added. "He never knew what hit him. He was swaying helplessly and in no condition to defend himself. His arms were at his side. He was completely out on his feet. He couldn't have continued. Another punch might have resulted in a hospital case." [1]