Date: 5th February 1943
Venue: Olympia Stadium, Detroit, Michigan, USA
Title: 10 Round Middleweight Contest
Sugar Ray Robinson
( 40 - 0 - 0 )
Weight: 144 1/2 lbs
( 30 - 5 - 2 )
Weight: 160 1/2 lbs
Having won a 10 round unanimous decision over LaMotta four months earlier at Madison Square Garden, Robinson entered the ring at the Olympia Stadium in Detroit as a 4 to 1 favourite. With five more wins on his ledger since that night, 'Sugar Ray' was now sporting a perfect 40-0-0 record compared to the 30-5-2 of LaMotta, known as "The Bronx Bull."
A packed crowd of 18,930 watched boxing history being made as LaMotta recorded the first loss on Robinson's record.
Robinson, who was chasing a shot at the welterweight title weighed in at 145 lbs and LaMotta 160 1/2 lbs but, the weight differential didn't stop Robinson winning the first match, so, when the Detroit native ran up an early lead it looked as though he was on course to repeat his previous victory. Of course, no one told LaMotta who turned things around, dragging the slick Robinson into a brawl. Near the end of the 8th round, LaMotta landed a right-left combination that dumped Robinson outside the ropes. Thankfully for "Sugar Ray," the bell sounded to end the round at the count of nine from referee Sam Hennessey.
Now Robinson was in a dog fight, and against the heavier LaMotta who had also won five out of five bouts since his last meeting with Robinson, he was fighting his opponent's fight.
At the end of the 10 rounds, LaMotta was rightly declared the victor by unanimous decision.
Scores: Sam Hennessey 52-47 | Dad Butler 57-49 | Joe Lenahan 55-45.