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Old 04-07-2015, 10:53 AM   #1
doug.ie
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Default Fritzie Zivic v Al Bummy Davis

"Most of the crowd were standing on chairs now, roaring protestor encouragement. A wadded newspaper landed in the ring, then somebody's hat. The referee kept his fascinated gaze on the fighters, like a young lab assistant observing a couple of ferocious insects.

Davis walked across the ring and fired a left hook that landed, according to one reporter, "about a foot above Zivic's knees." Zivic's face screwed up in pain, then settled into righteous indignation as he glanced at Referee Billy Cavanagh. Cavanagh was looking elsewhere.

Davis returned to the attack. Another low blow brought a chorus of boos from the crowd. Zivic backed away, but Davis pursued him, ripping two more left hooks into his groin. Fritzie, his face contorted with pain, hopped stiffly, first on one leg, then on the other. He fired back at Davis, rocking his head and drawing blood again from his mouth. But Bummy, in his passion, was impervious to punishment. He crowded Zivic, hooked him low, shifted his attack to the ribs and then lowered it once more. Only once did Referee Cavanagh warn him to keep his punches up.Davis dug another left into Zivic's groin.

Finally, at 2:34 of the second round,Cavanagh stopped the fight......Or, at least, he tried to. But Bummy was not yet ready. His answer to the referee's restraining gesture was to bounce a left hook off Zivic's skull. Faced with a more orthodox attack now, Zivic quickly solved it by hooking Davis twice in the face, bloodying his nose. Handlers from both corners, as well as a squad of burly special cops, poured through the ropes and tried to drag the berserk Davis to his corner. Bummy, his arms pinioned now, aimed a kick at Zivic, who had plunged into the struggling mob. Missing the intended target area on Fritzie's trunks, the kick instead caught Referee Cavanagh in the thigh. Bummy finally was hauled, spitting and cursing, from the ring.

The fight was awarded to Zivic on a foul. Even while the excited crowd streamed out of the Garden, journalists and politicians prepared to publish their outrage to the world. General Phelan, chairman of the New York State Athletic Commission, called the fight "the most disgraceful thing I ever saw," and banned Davis from boxing in New York state "for life".

Having joined the Army shortly afterward, Davis was granted a pass by his commanding general and a pardon by General Phelan on condition that he fight Zivic again for an Army charity. In a bout notable for its strict adherence to the commission's regulations, Zivic dealt Davis a savage beating and stopped him in the 10th round. But this orthodox defeat did nothing to break Bummy's rebellious spirit.

Some years later Bummy Davis was shot to death as he charged, bare-handed, into an armed gang trying to hold up the store of a friend in Brownsville. He was still trying to get that left hook across when he went down."

(from sports illustrated)

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