View Full Version : Was Joe Gans the welterweight champ?


masta
10-16-2009, 11:02 PM
I was searching through his record on www.boxrec.com and I saw this in the description of his victory against Mike Twin Sullivan on March 17, 1906:

World Welterweight Title, 142 lbs at 4 pm
Sullivan down in the 8th, Gans down in the 11th.
Gans' share of the gate was $2,425.20 (he also bet $1,700 on himself), and Sullivan's was $1,616.80.
Estimated weights for both fighters were 134lb for Gans and 142lb for Sullivan (San Francisco Call).

But the thing is, neither of them held the championship title, before the fight was made.

So was Joe Gans, at one time, the welterweight champion or what? Can anyone back this up?

Obama
10-17-2009, 12:13 AM
Pre NBA and NYSAC, it's pretty damn hard to figure out what was a real world title fight, unless it was the Heavyweight division.

mickey malone
10-17-2009, 08:45 AM
From what I can gather, YES, he briefly was WW champ, but relinquished it to win the LW title back.. Maybe he was uncomfortable at the weight..
I believe he had 3 fights with Sullivan, that were all extremely close, concluding 1 draw & 2 DC's in Gans's favour..

After further investigations, I've changed my mind..
NO... He wasn't WW champ..

masta
10-17-2009, 10:40 AM
Thanks for the replies. Interesting.

mickey malone
10-17-2009, 11:35 AM
Thanks for the replies. Interesting.
Here's something a bit more interesting..

It appears BoxRec may have made one of their not too uncommon errors..
A pall of mine has an old Hamlyn Encyclopedia Of Boxing.. The listings are compiled by Gilbert Odd who is well known as a quality historian.. His listings are as follows.....

Gans fought Sullivan (the 2nd of 3 meetings) at 142 (5lbs under the WW limit) on 19th January 1906..
There is no mention of this fight in Odd's listings of world title fights, and believe me, he covers everything apart from the WBO..

Furthermore, Honey Melody was WW champ throughout the whole of 1906, and Mike Twin Sullivan didn't become champ until 23rd of April 1907.. This via a 20rd DC over Melody...

I'd say, on comparing the quality of the 2 sources, you can ignore my 1st post..
I now believe the answer is NO, he wasn't WW champ, but he did fight Sullivan at a catch weight of 142 with no title at stake..

masta
10-17-2009, 11:53 AM
Well, I'll take your word for it, Malone. It also was a bit odd to me how they didn't officially list him as a champion if he did "win the title".

Nevertheless, he was a great lightweight champion.

TheGreatA
10-17-2009, 11:53 AM
Gans and Walcott had a disputed 20 round non-title bout which ended in a draw in 1904. Walcott, the welterweight champ, was then out of action for 2 years after accidentally shooting himself. The Gans-Sullivan fight was contested for a claim at the title but Walcott was still the actual champ until losing to Mellody in mid-1906. Sullivan later beat Mellody in 1907.

mickey malone
10-17-2009, 01:06 PM
Well, I'll take your word for it, Malone. It also was a bit odd to me how they didn't officially list him as a champion if he did "win the title".

Nevertheless, he was a great lightweight champion.
I'd say THE Greatest LW champ..

Just looking at GreatA's post, which tally up with the lists compiled by Gilbert Odd..
A knows his ****.. I knew Gans & Walcott fought out a draw, but didn't realize it was for the WW crown.. Walcott was an exceptional WW champ to..

TheGreatA
10-17-2009, 01:49 PM
I'd say THE Greatest LW champ..

Just looking at GreatA's post, which tally up with the lists compiled by Gilbert Odd..
A knows his ****.. I knew Gans & Walcott fought out a draw, but didn't realize it was for the WW crown.. Walcott was an exceptional WW champ to..

Actually it wasn't but a lot of people thought Gans had the better of it, and with Walcott having been out of boxing for two years, Gans had as good a claim as anybody at being the welterweight champion. But the Gans-Sullivan fight wasn't for the actual welterweight title.

Obama
10-17-2009, 02:32 PM
Gans fought Sullivan (the 2nd of 3 meetings) at 142 (5lbs under the WW limit) on 19th January 1906..

Pretty sure the WW limit wasn't 147 lbs back then.

mickey malone
10-17-2009, 05:24 PM
Pretty sure the WW limit wasn't 147 lbs back then.
The welterweight limit has always been 147, but without a lightwelterweight division, it was deemed greater than 140, but below 147, so granted, 142 would have been classed as welter, back in the day..