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Old 01-31-2008, 03:11 PM   #1
dpw417
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Default Gypsy Joe Harris...

How good was this Philadelphia welterweight? Does anyone have any recollectons of him?
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Old 01-31-2008, 03:46 PM   #2
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Default Re: Gypsy Joe Harris...

I saw him a couple of times on TV.

He was a quick, shifty, mostly defensive fighter. Picture a smaller Cory Spinks and you wouldn't be too far off.

He used a lot of odd angles, and it turns out that he was doing it because he was blind in one eye (can't remember which one) and was always trying to make sure he kept his good eye to the opponent. When that blindness was discovered, he had to retire.
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Old 01-31-2008, 08:59 PM   #3
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Default Re: Gypsy Joe Harris...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tony
I saw him a couple of times on TV.

He was a quick, shifty, mostly defensive fighter. Picture a smaller Cory Spinks and you wouldn't be too far off.

He used a lot of odd angles, and it turns out that he was doing it because he was blind in one eye (can't remember which one) and was always trying to make sure he kept his good eye to the opponent. When that blindness was discovered, he had to retire.
An article on Mr. Harris:

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Old 01-31-2008, 09:10 PM   #4
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Default Re: Gypsy Joe Harris...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Longhhorn71
An article on Mr. Harris:

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Thanks for the article. Enjoyed it very much.
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Old 02-03-2008, 09:07 AM   #5
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Default Re: Gypsy Joe Harris...

I wrote that article back in 2005. Unfortunately, I had to put it together very quickly. I was not able to dig deep enough to get a better, more complete, and totally accurate account of his career and life.

A better source is the 2006 book about Harris by his brother.

Here is the link:

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Old 02-03-2008, 09:35 AM   #6
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Default Re: Gypsy Joe Harris...

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Old 02-03-2008, 05:56 PM   #7
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Default Re: Gypsy Joe Harris...

Quote:
Originally Posted by dpw417
How good was this Philadelphia welterweight? Does anyone have any recollectons of him?
Harris was quite a character. A flashy boxer with unreal skill he was known to spend much more time in the pool hall then the gym. He would literaly waltz into the gym shortly before a fight for some frenzied sparring to get ready.

He had some nice wins including over Cokes in a non title go, but he wasnt able to get past Emile Griffith. After he was forced to hang em up he drifted a bit and died in his early thirties. He was one of the most colorful boxing characters of all time.

The fight that established him was a stoppage of rival Kitten Hayward... no easy feat. His only fight at Madison square Garden was the domination over Cokes which was perhaps his finest hour. After that fight he was featured on the cover of Sports Illustrated, he was the first fighter who wasnt a champ or heavyweight to receive that honor.

He was a huge draw and his match with Emile Griffith drew almost 14000 fans setting a Philadelphia Spectrum record that was broken finally by Briscoe - Hagler. When his liscense was pulled it was really tragic for Joe.

He was lost. Booze and drugs probably helped along the four heart attacks that he had and on March 6 1990 at Temple University Hospital he passed away. Most people will tell you that Joe`s license was suspended because it was "discovered" that he was blind in one eye but that isn`t the real story.

Gypsy Joe Harris was stopped from fighting by the powers that be in Phildadelphia after he didn't show up for a weigh-in and the entire fight card had to be cancelled. (Not the first time). They were fed up with him and this is how they hit back. They knew for years that he had a bad eye and let him fight---until this happened.
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Old 02-03-2008, 05:56 PM   #8
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Default Re: Gypsy Joe Harris...

double post.
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Old 02-04-2008, 09:48 AM   #9
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Default Re: Gypsy Joe Harris...

He didnt die in his early thirties. He died in 1990 at age 45.

Last edited by Luigi1985; 01-27-2007 at 02:12 PM.
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Old 02-09-2008, 10:37 PM   #10
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Default Re: Gypsy Joe Harris...

Quote:
Originally Posted by klompton
He didnt die in his early thirties. He died in 1990 at age 45.
Harris died a few months after his 44th birthday.
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