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Old 04-07-2013, 06:23 PM   #25
burt bienstock
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Default Re: Johnson on Dempsey-nice titbits here.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Saintpat View Post
Whether you think him deserving of a title shot or not, Sam Langford most certainly was not retired when Dempsey was champ. He beat Fireman Flynn multiple times whiel Dempsey was champion and was more active than Dempsey during the span while Dempsey was busy doing everything but being heavyweight champ.

In fact, Lanford fought 22 times during the period of time when Dempsey did not so much as set his toe in the ring while he was champ. That's quite a workload for a retired guy.

I'm not saying he could have beaten Dempsey -- we'll never know, sadly, but to try to twist history and say Langford was retired is just flat-out not true.

It's also worth noting that you can duck top challenges (not challengERS, but challenges) on your way to the title, and Dempsey most certainly did not seek out any bouts with viable, proven black fighters either on his way to the top or after winning the championship.

I'm sure you have addressed it somewhere, but Burt I'd like your take on Dempsey sitting on the championship and refusing to either give it up or defend it while worthy challengers were forced to wait. I think what he did in holding up the title is disgraceful -- you are one of his biggest fans, so I'd like to know how you reconcile this. Would you stand up for other fighters if the put their titles in deep freeze this way?
SP, GOOD post on your part...I meant to post "for the MOST part the top black fighters were retired except Harry Wills and the 38 year old Sam Langford....SP when I defend Jack Dempsey I do it on the fact that in his prime I believe he would be more than a handful against every heavyweight ever, because aside from his going Hollywood,and living the good life screwing the silent screen sirens, Dempsey because of his power, speed and toughness was a force to be reckoned with against anyone...
We must understand that Dempsey left home in his teens, rode the undercarriage of railroads,to avoid detection from the RR detectives, fought from town to town in bars winner takes all, finally in a stroke of good fortune meets Jack Kearns who feeds him and trains Dempsey to the Championship , fame and fortune and La Dolce Vita...Is it any wonder that Dempsey finally in the money after years of struggling ,says to himself "now I'm going to give in to my desires ,go to Hollywood while I'm on top,
screw the most beautiful chicks of the silent screen era , for I deserve to enjoy myself after years of depriving myself as a hobo youngster ". Who can blame Dempsey ? He was NOT thinking of posterity and ESB 90 years later...Of course not. In Hollywood he got married, fired his manager Jack Kearns because Dempsey claimed Kearns stole his money, divorced his wife, tried to recoup his money by launching a "comeback" after 3 years out of the ring, against a prime Gene Tunney,WITHOUT ONE TUNE-UP fight...
A recipe for disaster at age of 32...
Do I think Dempsey should have not gone Hollywood,and fought from 1923 to 1926 the top contender {Harry Wills] ? Your darn right, though they DID sign...Do I think that Jack Dempsey fought the calibre of opposition that Ali fought in his reign ? HELL NO!...Ali because of his times 1970s, fought
the best contenders [with exceptions of course] than any HW champion.
So SP ,I try to put myself in Dempsey position and his times, and though it would be great today to read about his fighting straight through 1919-1923
he followed his desire to live the good life after 1923...I can't blame him
knowing his hobo past coming up...
Summing up SP. I believe that though he didn't fight the calibre opponents of Ali, Dempsey mano to mano ,in his prime would be a TOUGH guy to handle in a ring, for ANYONE and the veteran fighters as Sam Langford, Gene Tunney, Mickey Walker, Jack Sharkey, Max Schmeling, Ray Arcel, Whitey Bimstein, Lou Stillman, Damon Runyon etc, who saw Dempsey in his prime and had him #1, KNEW what they were talking about...Cheers.
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