Jim Braddock vs. Joe Louis
1937-06-22 : Joe Louis 197¼ lbs beat Jim Braddock 197 lbs by KO in round 8 of 15
- Location: Comiskey Park, Chicago, Illinois, USA
- Referee: Tommy Thomas
James J. Braddock won the World Heavyweight Championship from lethal puncher Max Baer in 1935. The victory was described as one of the biggest upsets in ring history.
Braddock was supposed to defend the title against former champion Max Schmeling, who knocked out Louis the previous year, in September 1936, but Braddock was offered a better deal to fight Louis. Braddock was guaranteed a purse of $300,000 and ten percent of promoter Mike Jacobs' net profits from promoting Louis over the next decade.
One minute into the first round, Braddock and Louis started to exchange punches, and Braddock dropped Louis with a right uppercut to the chin. Louis got up quickly and went on to dominate the rest of the bout. Due to severe bleeding and a badly swollen face, Braddock's manager, Joe Gould, wanted to stop the bout between rounds seven and eight, but Braddock convinced Gould to let him go on.
In round eight, Louis threw a left to the body and followed with a hard right to the chin that put Braddock down. While Braddock laid lifelessly on the canvas, the referee counted him out at 1:10 of the round.
Braddock later said, "When he hit me with that left-right combination, I could've stayed down on the canvas for three weeks."
Louis was the only person who managed to put Braddock down for the referee's count of ten. He had been knocked down only twice before in his career, and he got up both times to win the fight.
Louis held the title for twelve years and defended it twenty-five times, both records for all weight divisions.