10-10-2009, 01:32 PM
Who do you feel was the better fighter?
Interesting enough, There was once talk of a fight between Benny Leonard and Micky Walker for the Welterweight Title.
After Benny failed in a bid to take the Welterweight crown from Jack Britton losing on a foul, he began struggling to make the Lightweight limt of 135. So Billy Gibson thought it was time Benny stepped up to Welterweight and told Benny that a fight with Walker who had just beaten Britton for the title, would gross three-quarters of a million at the gate.
Benny do was being pested by his mother to hand the gloves up, so Benny went to see Gibson and said he was not happy with his form. Benny said ''I've been accustomed to fighting regular but because of my mother's illness I've had only two bouts in 18 months'' I don't think am in condition for a fight with Walker'' But if you let me have one tune up fight and I think am ready, I'll fight Walker.
Benny did have the warm up fights against Pal Moran and boxed to a 10 round no decision bout in Clevand and Benny knew it was the end of the line. He was ring rusty, the fans even booed his display and in one of the later rounds he injured his left hand, when the final bell rang he knew that this was his last fight.
So Benny reitred as Lightweight Champion of the world and got his Mother to the announcement, he knew how happy this would make her.
(But due to the stock market crashing in 1929, Benny lost everything. and was forced to make a comeback. Benny was not the same fighter no more, Benny carried on to win and then was given a fight against Jimmy McLarnin, Ray Arcel (Trainer of Leonard at the time was dead set against this match from happeneing)
McLarnin was 24 years old and had smooth boxing skills, and also owned rugged youth and strength. Jimmy had also been destryoing numerous Jewish fighters such as Sid Terris, Al Singer, and Ruby Goldstein to name a few.
The fight was huge, Leonard fans had swapped the box office to see there hero and idol put McLarnin in his place.
But it wasn't to be, McLarnin stopped Leonard in 6 rounds, although Leonard did have some success in the early going. But in the end Jimmy's youth and strength was just to much for Benny to handle.
A couple of days after the fight McLarnin told a reporter ''It was one of the saddest things I had to do in my life. I had to put a end to Benny's career. There was alot of other guys who could have done it, becuase Benny was a shell of his fomer self. But Pop made the match, saying it might aswell be as anybody-Id treat him gentle pop said so we fought''
Benny said to Jimmy ''Thanks for not letting me hang around to long, Jimmy. It wound't have been a good way to go out with my hair all mussed''
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