Thursday, June 01, 2023  |



Classic Columns: Manufacture of synthetic titles continues

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Peter Kane was the legitimate flyweight champion in February 1938 regardless of what any state commission had to say. Photo / THE RING

Note: has instituted a new feature, Classic Columns, in which columns written by magazine founder Nat Fleischer and other RING magazine writers over the past 86 years will be posted Tuesdays. Today's column by Fleischer, about synthetic titles created by state commissions, is from February 1938. His comments hold true today if they're applied to the myriad useless sanctioning bodies. The Winky Wright-Paul Williams matchup on Saturday proves that an alphabet title isn't necessary for a fight to be meaningful.

There is no let-up in the synthetic manufacture of boxing titles. Despite the fact that Peter Kane of England is the legitimate world flyweight king by virtue of his victory over the American champion, Jackie Jurich, the California Boxing Commission has crowned Little Dado of the Philippines the world crown wearer following his 10-round victory over Small Montana.

Of course, no one who follows boxing closely will pay any attention to the claim of the new “champ.” But, by naming him, the California state board, like its New York colleagues, has added to the confusion created when the Empire State body refused to recognize Kane as titleholder.
It is a pitiful state of affairs when otherwise sensible sportswriters fall in line with unknowing commissioners in accepting such absurd rulings as those that were recently made in the case of Kane, the vacating of John Henry Lewis’ title, and other such silliness.

Wherein had Small Montana or Little Dado any right to a title claim? Do the California commissioners and the New York moguls forget that Small Montana lost his American crown to Jackie Jurich in a title bout on the Coast and that Jurich was knocked out by Kane, the leading European, in a bout recognized by the British Board of Control and the European bodies as for the world honors?

A world title bout it was, because Jurich, despite his knockout at the hands of Benny Lynch, who scaled far beyond the weight limit, according to the rules of the sport had won the flyweight crown on the scales — a proper procedure.

The best that can be claimed for Dado is that he is the California champion, just as Archibald is the New York State featherweight titleholder. Leo Rodak is the NBA champion in the same class, Solly Krieger is the Washington State middleweight king, and Fred Apostoli is the New York State middleweight titleholder.

It is high time that boxing writers cut loose from the crazy-quilt rulings of errant boxing commissioners who don’t know the fundamentals of the sport over which they rule, and that they use better judgment in keeping the records straight. Calling a boxer a champion simply because he has been so dubbed by a commission is the height of folly. Let’s get back to common sense.