Apr 11, 2010

Baer vs. Simon, 1937

When Max Baer beat Primo Carnera for the Heavyweight Title in 1934, he became a celebrity overnight. In the year that he held the title, his nightclub carousing was legendary, including a Vanity Fair Magazine profile. His younger brother, Buddy, 6'7", decided he too would become a boxer. Between 1934 and 1937 Buddy fought40 times.

"On August 30, 1937 Buddy took on his first highly regarded opponent, New York's rising prospect, Abe Simon, at Yankee Stadium*. Baer won by TKO in the third. "Simon gave Baer a beating in the 1st round and had him in distress, but he came back in the next two sessions with a succession of blows to the body and head that had his huge opponent reeling when the bout was stopped" (New York Times). Baer then went on to beat Two Ton Tony Galento, setting himself up for a title shot with Joe Louis. Louis had called Galento the toughest man he ever fought. Like Simon, Buddy Baer got two chances at Louis. In the first fight he went 7 rounds, in the second fight, he got knocked out in the first round. Also like Simon, he would retire from the ring after his second Louis fight. Baer would later say, "The only way I could have beaten Louis that night was with a baseball bat."
*Buddy Baer-Boxrec Boxing Encyclopaedia


gary ledebur said...

Around 1975, give or take a couple of years, I was in Caesar's Palace in Las
Vegas and noticed a large African-American man standing all alone just off the gaming floor. I looked for a while and finally concluded it was Joe Louis. I went over and introduced myself and had a brief interesting conversation. He needed money and was being paid by Caesar's to stand there and talk to folks. Heartbreaking.

michael molovinsky said...

the proceeds from both his fights with simon went to the war effort, yet, later the government would tax him on those gates. i don't know the particulars of his IRS troubles, but his contributions morale wise to the war effort was huge, it seems that he was indeed treated badly