Jack Johnson vs Tommy Burns | Ring Talk with Lou Eisen | Talkin Fight
EPISODE: Episode 4
Jack Johnson vs Tommy Burns | Ring Talk with Lou Eisen | Talkin Fight
Lou discusses the historic boxing match where Jack Johnson becomes the first African American to win the world heavyweight title when he knocks out Canadian Tommy Burns in the 14th round in a championship bout near Sydney, Australia.
Discussing the greatest boxing controversies throughout history, Lou Eisen offers his opinions and insights in this fantastic live-streamed series of episodes. Watch live on TalkinFight.com every Sunday at 2pm ET.
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[ Music, ] hi, i’m lou eisen, welcome to ring talk and happy mother’s day to all you, wonderful moms out there uh some of you who are boxing fans, especially if your son’s a boxer um.
We have a a great show for you lined up today.
Well, you’ll be the judge of that today we’re going to discuss one of the five most important fights in the history of boxing ever and this is the fight between jack johnson, the first black man to ever challenge for a world heavyweight title against the first canadian To be world heavyweight champion, tommy burns, now johnson, there were great fighters before johnson black fighters, but because of the racism endemic to the sport, they didn’t get a chance.
And so when i go to the boxing hall of fame in canon stoughton new york, which, if you haven’t gone, you got to go because it’s heaven on earth, they do.
They just do uh ed, brophy, jeff brophy.
All of them do a fantastic job and when you look at the fighters that are around john o’sullivan was considered the first gloved heavyweight champion.
I don’t accept that.
I consider him the first white gloved heavyweight champion, because at that time the best heavyweight in the world was the australian fighter.
The black fighter, peter jackson and john or sullivan, would not fight him, and also there was a canadian george godfrey who was the same height.
Five, ten and a half a sullivan and issued two challenges challenged him at madison square garden.
Uh uh godfrey only weighed 175 pounds.
It was originally from the bog, which is part of charlottetown that you know charlottetown.
The black population today is infinitesimal, but in the 1860s you know it gave birth to to godfrey and george budge buyers and they became two world.
They were called colored world champions there, but really they were the best in their weight divisions.
Back then byers was a great champion.
He was a middleweight champ and he and when went on to train sam langford, the greatest fighter from weymouth falls nova scotia to never win a world title.
Okay, so sullivan wouldn’t fight black fighters.
He drew the color line, so sullivan has the world title.
He loses it to corbett.
Corbett beats him.
Corbett loses the title to fitzsimmons simmons fights a brick wall named james j jeffries called the boilermaker who was an outlier back.
Then he was 6’3 225.
Then a fighter that was 510 was gigantic fighter that was 6’3 was like from another planet.
It would be like tyson.
Fury is considered today.
You know i worked for lennox lewis, it was just over six five and i’m five.
Nine linux lewis is huge, but not as big as tyson fury.
So we we have fitzsimmons losing the title to jeffrey’s.
Jefferies remains undefeated.
He would not fight a black man and all the fighters from sullivan on said i’ll fight.
Anyone except the black guy and at the time jeffries was champ.
You had the great sam langford, the canadian, you had jack johnson.
You had sam mcveigh and, of course, the great joe jeannette from new jersey.
So he would not fight them, and so he retires undefeated.
In 1905 – and he has a tournament and in the tournament uh marvin hart becomes the next champion he’s from kentucky virulent racist and he beats jack root.
Who was originally from germany, who was more of a light? Heavyweight heart was six one.
Six two heart marvin hart wins, and at this time we have tommy burns who eventually beats hart in 1906 for the world title i’m getting ahead of myself a bit here, so tommy burns born 1881 in hanover ontario to an italian father and a german mother and Hanover is a very small town in ontario and i believe it’s the place of the canadian.
I believe it’s the canadian baseball hall of fame.
No, that’s saint mary’s.
Sorry got that wrong.
Okay, so we have, we have tommy burns.
Burns grows up and, as he’s growing up in hanover he’s doing manual, labor chopping trees and that he gets into a lot of fights, but, unlike a lot of people of that time, he loved fighting it.
Just it emboldened him.
It embraced him and made him feel alive and he was a good athlete he’s only five seven.
So as he got older, he became exceptionally skilled at lacrosse, which is canada’s national sport.
Not hockey lacrosse and lacrosse back then was very vicious.
There were a lot of fights and people loved hiring burns for their team, because, if fights broke out, burns single-handedly could take out the other team, as well as the fans that were attacking his team burns could really fight.
It is not fair to say, like some boxing historians have, that burns was the most unskilled heavyweight champion.
That’S not the case at all.
Burns was quite skilled.
He knew what he was doing.
He learned it from sam biddle in detroit in detroit, where he was playing.
Lacrosse someone said to him: you should really take up boxing.
This is really what you look to be good at started to train with sam biddle, who was an old boxing trainer manager, very curmudgeonly nasty mean guy, but he top burns.
The ins and out of the boxing business – and he showed him how to fight what burns was exceptional at, was only five seven.
He could use his full weight, which is usually 168 to 175.
He could get full leverage on his punches and, as any trainer will tell you it, doesn’t it’s not the size of the dog in the fight it’s the size of the fighting the dog.
If you get hit with a sandbag in the chin, that’s 175 pounds.
You’Re gon na go so burns knew this and he took on a lot of guys.
Mike shrek was one who was six five or something and knocked him out.
He beat a lot of guys that were much bigger than him, because he knew all about balance and leverage.
John arthur johnson jack johnson was born in 1878 to the he was the a child of of uh, a couple that his mother was tiny.
That was her name tiny and she her and her husband were former slaves and i think they had 12 children.
Johnson grew up in extreme poverty and around i guess.
The ages, 17 18 he’d seen fights growing up, he’d actually gone to boxing matches.
He wanted to be a prize fighter, so he embarks on a career in his native galveston texas, that’s where he starts fighting and then he starts traveling all across the united states and he has pretty good success, he’s winning some and he’s winning fights mostly he’s losing Some here and there, but his life changes when he fights one of the all-time greats of the berenical era.
Jewish joe kowinsky kowinski uh, was then fighting with gloves.
They had fought.
He had fought before that bare-handed and he actually was in a famous fight with james j corbett, who they knew each other, since they were eight years old, eight years old, on a barge in san francisco, with something like a 28-round fight which corbett eventually won by Knockout and so johnson is fighting kowinski in galveston, texas fights were allele back then they held the fight anyways koinski’s, five, ten five, ten five eleven johnson’s, almost six one kwinsky realizes early in the fight first couple rounds.
I can’t hit him he’s too tall for me and he keeps moving back so koenske used an old trick that fighters used today.
He took his hands and he exaggerated his defense.
He put his hands up high, inviting johnson to hit him in the stomach.
That was deliberate.
It was a trick so when johnson leaned forward with his left jab kowinski, who was also right-handed, moved his left foot back and then shot a left hook out caught johnson on the side of the head on the temple knocked him out cold.
Fourth round and johnson admitted later, i was unconscious for a long time, they’re immediately arrested after the fight they’re put in jail for about a month and during the day they put on boxing exhibitions for the jailers and the other prisoners and johnson said that one month In jail is what made him a great fighter because kowinski broke him down, uh, pugilistically and said this is what you need to do to win.
He said i never.
If i fought you a thousand times, i should never have caught you with that left hand.
That was a big mistake in your part, you’re too physically big to get caught with a punch like that.
Because of your reach and your height, you should not be coming forward.
You should be keeping every fight on the end of your jab and walking guys into your right hand, thereby using their momentum, their own momentum to knock them out and that’s what johnson did he mastered that art you rarely see johnson attacking he did when he fought Willard because he had no chance or no choice at that point in the fight he had, he wanted to get rid of him and also when he knocked out stanley catcher.
He was angry at ketchup because they’ve broken the pre-fight agreement, but for most of his fights, people would rush him.
Jeffries rush him burns rushed him and he would let them walk into the right hands all the time.
So johnson is moving up the heavyweight ladder.
After that, and probably by by 1904, he lost to kwinsky in 1901 by 1904 he’s the best heavyweight in the world, but no one will fight him.
Certainly not jeffrey’s jefferies won’t fight him.
Thank you for your comments.
Vinnie and um.
So johnson has to fight and a lot.
This happened all the time to black heavyweights.
He had to fight every other black heavyweight and they would fight each other 20, 30 40 times and before they would get a chance at a white fighter.
Now johnson got a chance to fight marvin hart, who would become world heavyweight champ, but the referee was a former fighter and promoter alec greganes, who was also a bigot johnson, beat hart up, but he didn’t go all out.
He agreed to not knock him out and they gave the decision to heart.
This happened to a lot of black fighters, so nothing johnson could do about it.
If you complain well, the promoter pulls out a gun, puts it to your head and it’s nothing.
You can do about it back then, so he’s still fighting he’s still beating guys, but very few white fighters want to fight him.
Tommy burns gets a shot at marvin hart for the title.
Marvin hart was not all there in the head and he was a hot head, as was burns at time hart before the fight burns says i don’t like the way your hands are wrapped, do it over and heart doesn’t want to, but they force some dude over.
I don’t like your gloves, get another pair.
I don’t like your shoes, there’s something wrong with them.
I don’t like to sash around your trunks.
I don’t like your trunks and every time he’s bringing all these things up.
Heart is, you know, he’s just it’s like going into a fit of jackie, gleason steam’s coming out of his ears, he’s so angry at burns.
He wants to strangle him he’s screaming at him, and burns is calm because he knows an angry fighter can’t fight.
He knows heart will just rush at him like a madman, that’s exactly what happened.
Hart rushed at him like a madman, throwing wild windmill, punches and and burns calmly avoided the punches and beat the hell out of heart and won the world title after he wins the world title.
He makes a comment that got world attention.
It was revolutionary.
It was as revolutionary as the bolshevik a revolution in 1917.
tommy burns, the first world heavyweight champion the first prominent white boxer to say i will fight any man on earth.
I don’t care what his skin color is.
I don’t care what his religion is.
I don’t care what he looks like.
I don’t care what country it’s from black white, yellow purple, whatever he is.
If the money’s right i’ll fight him and once he says that he gets insulted by john l, sullivan james corbett insult some bob fitzsimmons.
All these previous champions call him uh a bum uh scalawag, a rogue.
How dare you say that you can’t fight a black man, but he said i i don’t care, i’m not in this.
You know to be prejudiced.
I’M in this to make money.
That’S the only reason i want to do this and what most people don’t know was burns’s.
First wife was a lady named irene, pepper, who was mix parentage.
She was she had a black father, a white mother and her brother harry was one of burns sparring partners.
Burns had fought six african-americans before he actually fought for the world title and fought jack johnson.
So these two johnson and burns are on a collision course and burns keeps avoiding johnson not because he’s black, but because he’s the best fighter in the world and burns thinks you know.
I want to hold on to this title and make some money.
So burns is traveling all over the world.
He goes to to australia and beats bill squires.
He goes and he beats all these australian and english fighters who really aren’t up to his level, but everywhere he goes in england and australia, even in the states.
Jack johnson has a front row seat and is heckling him during each fight gets in the ring after, like ali did with liston and says you have to fight me, i’m the best fighter in the world, i’m the best heavyweight.
You know it you’re, just a bluffer until you fight me and burns won’t fight him.
Finally, newspapers in england and australia say we should kick burns out of the country unless he agrees to fight jack johnson, so byron says.
I have an idea.
I know how to get out of this i’ll fight johnson no problem, but i want 30 grand now back then in 1908 30 grand was equivalent to seven hundred eight hundred thousand dollars today and burns logic for demanding such a high fee was sound.
It made sense if i’m gon na fight the best challenger out there, who is johnson by far i should get the most money and he did and he thought but no one’s going to pay this.
But he was wrong.
Hugh d mcintosh, who they nicknamed huge deal mac in touch of australia, said i’ll pay you, the 30 grand and burns, was sort of dumpster up.
What do you mean you’re? Paying i’ll pay it fights on johnson got five grand and johnson was incensed that he got five grand, but johnson also knew, even today in boxing most guys, like last night, for instance, canelo got 15 million people got 2 million.
2 million is not petty amount of money.
It’S a lot of money, but it’s not 15 million johnson knew once he won the title.
He could make money off of it, then so they agreed to fight in australia.
Part of the deal which a lot of people don’t know was johnson said i will fight burns and i agree if i win, i will fight sam langford, give him a shot at the title at the national sporting club in london within the next three months.
So langford fought johnson a lot of revisionist history about this.
It was only allowing for his 20th fight years before people say well, langford did so well and he won and he got ripped off and johnson wouldn’t face him again.
Not true johnson beat the crap out of him for 20 rounds.
He dropped lying for it six times.
Langford dropped him once it was a wide unanimous decision in boston for johnson, but johnson had seen langford in this in the subsequent five six years saw how good he became and thought why take the chance.
So we have the fight johnson burns rush cutters bay.
A lot of a lot of racial tension leading up to the fight, especially in the promotion 20 000 sailors from the american fleet, are in port in sydney, australia and they new south wales and they come they come to the fight johnson during the fight had to Put up with racial epithets, as he did in all his fights from burns and from other people from the fans from the reporters even burns, never looked at boxing in racial terms.
As he said, it was tough enough, just beating the guy in front of you, i’m not going to carry the onus of my entire race on my shoulders.
I’M not fighting to redeem my people, i’m not fighting as the black hope or to save my race.
I’M just fighting for me and that’s it, but white fans wouldn’t accept that, so they kept on him and on him and on him, and it got to a point during the fight with burns, where johnson, who was smiling the whole time, thought well now.
Now that you won’t stop doing this to me and i’ve told you i’m just fighting for me, i’m going to take it out on burns, it wasn’t really a fight.
It was a massacre.
Burns didn’t win more than five seconds of any round.
The fight starts.
The referee that couldn’t agree on a referee was hugh mcintosh.
The promoter the fight starts five seconds into the fight johnson hits burns right hand drops him burns is stunned, gets up johnson whacks him knocks him down again.
Johnson’S 6-1 220 burns is 5’7 170.
Difference huge height differential burns believed in many white fighters and fans believe they actually believe that black fighters were so scared.
They believed this.
This racial slur that the minute of fight started when a white man approached him to throw a punch that a black fighter would go.
Oh, my god turn around and run away, never happened and they used to say to about black fighters like johnson and langford hit him on the stomach black fighters.
Don’T like getting hit in the stomach to which langford once responded to a fan.
Do you know anyone that likes getting hit in the stomach, so he’s pounding burns from the first round on? He hits him with the right hand, knocks him down he’s killing with his jab and as you watch the fight he’s not you can see this on the tape he’s not only hitting burns he’s turning his attention to the fans yelling at him and he’s smiling and Talking to them, yep yep hi, how you doing nice to see you hey nice, to see you hey! I like your wife’s hat.
That’S nice! Hey! That’S a nice hat! You got on sir nice and, as he’s doing it he’s whacking burns at you know of his own free will, just whenever he wants he’s pounding him just hitting him with right, hands left, uppercuts and there’s nothing.
Burns can do about it.
Burns has is not a dumb fighter, but he has no way of solving the riddle of jack johnson too big too strong, too smart, too fast, and each round goes like this.
People are screaming at him, he’s smiling and then in in third fourth fifth round and on he lifts his shirt up or doesn’t look, he doesn’t have a shirt he’s gon na say i lift my shirt up, but i don’t want to get that many laughs.
He lifts he lifts his arms up and he says to johnson or to burns.
Excuse me hit me in the stomach right here.
Mr tommy hit me i’ll.
Let you and burns hits him, and he says now hit me here in the liver and burns.
Hits him hit me again after he does it.
He pats him on the head.
Good boy, tommy, your mommy will be proud good boy, mr tommy, and he says to the birds here hit me one time here in the cheek and burns hits him good for you, mr tommy, and as he’s hitting him, he keeps you know he keeps letting burns Hit him at times – and he says, is – is that all ah, mr tommy, you hit like my little sister, you hit like a girl, you’re, a boy he’s emasculating him he’s he’s taking away his manhood he’s.
Actually letting burns hit him and laughing at him.
While he does it and then he does what ally did to list him in the first fight johnson starts calling his shots.
Tommy here comes a double jab and he hits him with a double jab.
Here comes the right hand to the chin.
Now here comes the right: uppercut burns knows what’s coming, but he can’t do anything about it.
Johnson, in the course of the fight breaks, burns jaw busts his nose closes his eyes.
Burns is a mess and, as this is going on, burns is getting angrier and angrier and angrier and he starts calling johnson the worst imaginable racist words you can imagine.
He uses the n word over and over come fight.
Me you cur you yellow dog and johnson said after if i had killed him, and i certainly could have, i would have been justified in doing so for the way that he treated me for what he called me.
Burns is trying his best and johnson.
Just has his left arm out, holding it on his head and there’s nothing.
Burns can do about it.
It’S a fearful beating now the controversy from this fight arises in the ending.
Some of you have probably seen this fight on youtube.
In 1967, bill caton and jim jacobs, who went on to manage mike tyson, came out with the film called legendary champions, and you can still get it and it’s boxing from 1889 on film to 1929 and they showed the the johnson burns fight and they showed the Ending in in the 14th round, where, where johnson hits in the right hand and burns his arms go up in the air and he’s falling forward, and then the tape stops.
The narrator says and that’s exactly when the police went up into the the filming booth stopped.
The fight and entered the ring and stopped the fight.
Well, that’s simply not true, because if you see on the film they show a clip of the booth.
The booth in which your cameraman was filming was like a wooden shed like a phone booth made out of wood with a part of it cut out for the camera, but it was on like a 20 or 30 foot pole up in the air.
So there’s no way police could have got up there unless they had the ladder that the cameraman used, but it wasn’t available to them.
They didn’t stop the fight or stop the filming of the fight.
What had happened was in the 14th round.
Just before johnson’s corner said it’s enough, the crowd’s getting ugly, we don’t want you to get attacked just end, it johnson came out hit him immediately.
Burns goes down, it can barely make it up.
Johnson hits him again, burns goes down, burns gets up and then at that point people are screaming, don’t let him knock the white man out didn’t phrase it that way and the promoter the referee, hugh mcintosh, gets in between them and stops the fight the police entered The ring johnson’s awarded a points victory the point in the film where burns is falling in the film stops and they said the tape runs out that wasn’t true.
There is, there was a tape of burns hitting the canvas and the referee’s counting and burns barely beats.
The count what happened to it? Well, when i spoke to steve the late great steve lot, who worked for big fights incorporated.
He said when the fight of the film of the fight came out.
Riots occurred all over the world, people were killed, black people were killed.
Celebrating johnson’s victory in the united states and in other parts of the world, so what the? What people did? What distributors did is they edited the tape they took out the last part of the 14th round where burns hits the canvas and they said well.
This is when the fight ends.
You don’t need to see the white man getting knocked down by the black man and it’s unfortunate that they did that, because it would still be great to see that today as part of history.
I asked steve lot if that film still exists.
He said i understand there is.
There are several copies.
I couldn’t tell you where on earth they are i’ve been looking for them myself for 40 years.
So if anyone has a copy, please let us know but burns went down would have been counted out, except there would have been a riot, so they went in and they stopped.
The fight same thing happened when johnson beat jeffries in what they called the fight of the century.
Johnson knocks jeffries down twice in the 15th round and the promoter, who is also the ref there.
Tax record stops to fight, otherwise jeffrey’s never would have made it to his feet.
So after this fight jack, johnson’s, the heavyweight champ and when he leaves australia, he sells for canada.
He goes to victoria bc, where he won’t can’t get a hotel room they’ll.
Let his white wife in, but they won’t let him in so he has to stay at a friend’s place.
Johnson has the title from 1908 to 1915, in which he defends.
Finally, at the age of 37 and 120 degree weather out of shape against uh jess willard, who knocks him out in the 26th round, and it was a legitimate knockout.
Although johnson claims it wasn’t, johnson ends up going to prison after because he’d been convicted on a trumped-up charge on the man, act goes to, prison comes back to the states gets out after year, and he continues fighting here and there.
But but he’s getting older hard to make money opens the club club closes, you know, works in a flea circus.
Sadly, in new york goes around just travels around the country.
He’S sort of a nomad.
His best friend is a torontonian named johnny coulon, who my grandparents, when they first got married, had a house beside him in toronto and on the other side of the house, was mary.
On the other side that was mary pickford’s house, anyways coulomb became the bannawing champion.
While johnson was the world heavyweight champ, they became very close johnson uh lives out his life, making appearances all over the world traveling.
He marries a woman named irene pineau, who supports him.
A wealthy widow and johnson uh died in 1946.
Before he died.
Uh he’d gone to um.
He predicted that joe lewis would lose his first fight to max schmeling and no one believed them.
They thought he was just a jealous guy.
He said he’ll lose because when, when lewis throws his left jab out, he doesn’t bring it back up like this.
He leaves it by his hand and he was right by his side.
Excuse me smiling caught him and knocked him out, although lewis caught up with him in the rematch a couple years later and knocked smelling out in two minutes, so johnson was not popular amongst a lot of black fighters until many years later, such as muhammad ali, who Adored him because of johnson and his antics, a lot of black fighters would deny chances at getting world title shots and that really upset them.
So johnson is living in chicago he’s.
Going down to visit relatives in 46.
, johnny coulon, the former bantamweight champion’s best friend, who owned a gym there, which ali later trained at begged him not to go.
He said you know what it’s like in the south.
They treat you like dirt and you’ll get angry and something bad will happen.
He said i can handle it.
He goes to a restaurant when he’s in the south.
They they tell him in a racist way to go around to the back and get his food.
They won’t let him enter.
He explains that he’s jack johnson, the former heavyweight champ they know who he is he’s so angry at the indignant he gets in the car.
His friend says.
Let me drive you’re too angry tells his friend to shut up drives, starts.
Speeding hits a tree flies into the tree, breaks his neck and dies.
He is gone.
Tommy burns before jack johnson died had written him a letter uh several years earlier, apologizing for the way he treated him before and during the fight and johnson was kind enough to accept this apology.
After the fight losing the fight to johnson burns fought some more times.
He won some more fights, but nothing of consequence, retired for a long time kept fighting uh, i like retired and then came back and kept fighting and lost fights promoted a famous fight in 1913 in calgary between luther mccarty and arthur pelkey for the white world heavyweight Title which ended, i guess a minute or two into the first round when mccarty got hit a light, shot and died uh.
It was found out later on that mccarty fought with a broken neck, because he’d been horseback riding the day before and broke his neck and should not have been allowed to fight, but made everyone swear not to tell anyone.
Burns became a minister and preached all over.
He settled in vancouver, he had no money, he was broke for most of the rest of his life from the 20s until the 50s when he died when he died, there was no headstone and he was going to be buried in a popper’s grave, but luckily, for Him one of his oldest and best friends was cyclone taylor all-time hockey great, who got a bunch of guys that were well off to chip in and buy him an expensive casket get him a nice burial plot and a headstone.
Otherwise, we would never have known where tommy burns was buried, the fight itself.
There were a lot of controversies about it that johnson agreed to carry him and agreed to win by decision, but that’s simply not true.
You know johnson may have agreed to not knock him out in the early rounds, which was quite common for good fighters back then black and white, but come the 14th round.
He was definitely trying to knock him out.
This was the first.
He wasn’t the first black man to be a world champion that belong.
That title belonged to a canadian george dixon from africville nova scotia, who held the bad and white title and the featherweight title.
Second man to win the world.
Bla uh title black man to win a world boxing title was was the great barbados, joe walcott, who underwater eight title and the third one, although americans will claim he’s the first because they don’t know was joe ganz, the great joe ganz.
It was the lightweight champion.
Jack johnson was the fourth man of color to win an undisputed world boxing champion he’s considered today to be the greatest defensive fighter of all time.
Also, he was pardoned by president trump for his man act, uh, conviction which was uh issued to him just after he became champion and was it was not trying to make a pun here, but it was uh.
It was trumped up, never should have been convicted.
It was his own wife.
He was taken across state lines.
His own wife may was a prostitute before she married him, but he wasn’t living off her veils when he was traveling with her.
At that time the law was enacted specifically to get jack johnson and when he was convicted, he jumped bail, came to canada and then went to europe to continue his career.
Uh johnson and burns were never really friends.
Uh burns admitted years later.
How great he was.
I don’t personally accept the racism of that time towards johnson or any black fighter.
People like to say it’s: okay, because that’s how it was back, then it’s not okay and it’s never acceptable.
Jack johnson has to be rated in the top five or even three heavyweight champions of all time.
You can’t compare him to a tyson, fury or lennox lewis or larry holmes or foreman, because he fought in a different style when, when jack johnson fought, his hands were like this, rather than like this, so different style.
But he had a tremendous uh gift.
A mastery of the ring geography he knew where he was at all times in the ring.
He could keep track of everything that was going on in the ring.
He knew what his opponent was going to do before his opponent even knew it, and he was always thinking two or three steps ahead.
Tommy burns was a very good champion of his time.
He wasn’t people say well, he was small, he wasn’t that talented.
He was a lot of people derided as being the the worst of all, but he wasn’t.
He was much better than primo carnera and he was much better than jess willard.
You know he could have easily beaten both guys, although they were both much taller than him.
He came along, he was a bridge champion.
He was the champion between jeffries and johnson and johnson when johnson became champ.
He signaled a new error in boxing and that boxing changed rather than two men going forth and attacking each other johnson was the classic counter puncher, who let you knock yourself out.
So in closing, if you haven’t seen this fight, please go to youtube.
Please watch this fight.
It’S a fascinating historical document not only of the first black man to become world heavyweight champion and what a life he had, but of the time boxing became modernized.
It went from burns who fought like a lot of the old champions to a modern champion like jack johnson, who used a lot of the modern techniques that are still in usage today.
December 26, 1908 rush cutters, bay, jack johnson ascends to become the first black man ever to hold the undisputed heavyweight champion of the world.
I’M lou eisen, and this has been ring – talk thank you for watching
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