Chuvalo at the River Rock Casino in April, 2010
|Real name||Jure Čuvalo|
|Height||6 ft 0 in|
September 12, 1937 |
Toronto, Ontario, Canada
|Wins by KO||64|
George Louis Chuvalo, also known as Jure Čuvalo CM (born September 12, 1937) is a retired Canadian heavyweight boxer who was never knocked off his feet in ninety-three professional fights between 1956 and 1979. He is often considered to have had the greatest chin in the history of boxing and to be one of its most durable fighters ever. He was Canadian heavyweight champion as both an amateur and a professional, and twice fought for versions of the professional world's heavyweight title. He had a long career and fought nearly all the top fighters in the heavyweight division.
Early life and career
Born in Ontario to Croatian parents from Bosnia and Herzegovina, Stipan and Katica (born Kordić) Čuvalo, father from Proboj and mother from Grljevići near Ljubuški. Chuvalo grew up in The Junction district of west Toronto, and had one sibling, Zora. Chuvalo attended St. Michael's College School between 1950 and 1953 following which he attended Humberside Collegiate Institute and became one of the best-known amateur boxers in Toronto, fighting out of the Earlscourt Athletic Club.
Chuvalo became Canadian amateur heavyweight champion in May 1955, defeating Winnipeg's Peter Piper with a first-round KO in a tournament final in Regina, Saskatchewan. Chuvalo finished his amateur career with a 16-0-0 record, all by KO within four rounds. Nicknamed "Boom Boom", Chuvalo turned professional in 1956, knocking out four opponents in one night to win a heavyweight tournament held by former world's champion Jack Dempsey at Maple Leaf Gardens in Toronto on April 26, 1956. Rocky Marciano was one of his trainers in his early career.
Chuvalo lost a close decision to former champion Floyd Patterson in a bout that The Ring named fight of the year for 1965. Patterson described it as one of the toughest contests of his career.
Two Ali fights
Chuvalo is best known for his two fights against Muhammad Ali. He went the distance both times, in each case losing the decision by a wide margin on the scorecards. The first fight, on March 29, 1966, was for Ali's world title. "He's the toughest guy I ever fought", said Ali of Chuvalo after the fight. Ali's cornerman, Angelo Dundee, said, "He never stopped coming on ... you've got to admire a man like that." Various articles over the years detail that Ali had painful ribs for weeks after the contest. The second Ali fight was in 1972. Ali—then between his world championship reigns—won an easy decision. It was the last major fight of Chuvalo's career.
Other career highlights
Future world champions Joe Frazier and George Foreman, despite being big punchers, were unable to knock Chuvalo down, but they were the only two fighters to ever stop him, scoring technical knockout (TKO) victories. Ring Mag reported Frazier nearly closed both Chuvalo's eyes and also cracked one of the man's cheek bones.
Foreman, regarded as one of the hardest hitters in boxing history, mauled Chuvalo with a wicked jab and some truly thunderous big punches breaking Chuvalo's nose. Yet, in his typical display of toughness, when the referee stopped the fight in the third round, Chuvalo said to him, "What are you, nuts?".
One of Chuvalo's biggest victories was a seventh-round knockout of contender Jerry Quarry on December 12, 1969. Afterwards Quarry complained of a fast count but Chuvalo responded 'It must have been a good punch'.
He got an eleventh-round knockout against contender Doug Jones on October 2, 1964 notably using the boxing technique 'kill the body and the head dies' . Chuvalo also defeated notable fighters such as Howard King, Canadian champion Bob Cleroux, Yvon Durelle, Willi Besmanoff, big hitting Mike DeJohn, Cleveland Williams, and Manuel Ramos.
Chuvalo was the number one contender for the British Empire heavyweight title for many years but champion Henry Cooper did not fight him.
Chuvalo lost three sons, Jesse Chuvalo in 1985 to suicide, Georgie Lee Chuvalo in 1993 and Steven Louis Chuvalo in 1996 both to drug overdoses. He lost his wife to suicide after the second son died. His remaining son, Mitch, became a teacher at Western Technical Commercial School and University of Toronto Schools and married his wife from El Salvador, Ivania, with whom he is raising two boys, Aaron and Elijah. His daughter, Vanessa, has two girls named, Adelayde and Michaella and a step son named Jirel. His granddaughter, Rachel Chuvalo, passed away in February 2013 after a battle with cancer.
George is married to his second wife, Joanne Chuvalo, and is stepfather to her two children, Jesse and Ruby. George and his wife tour high schools speaking about the devastation of drug use to teens. They have a summer home in Midland, Ontario.
Tributes and other appearances
Chuvalo was inducted into the Canadian Sports Hall of Fame in 1990 and the World Boxing Hall of Fame in 1997. He was made a Member of the Order of Canada in 1998 and was awarded a star on Canada's Walk of Fame in 2005.
To mark the 40th anniversary of his July 19, 1967 fight against Joe Frazier, he and Frazier held a gala in Toronto, raising money for different charities.
Chuvalo was featured as part of the 2009 documentary film Facing Ali, in which notable former opponents of Ali (Chuvalo fought Ali twice) speak about how fighting Ali changed their lives.
During April 2010, George was a special guest at the BC Golden Gloves tournament held at the Eagle Ridge Community Centre in Langford, BC.  The event was co-hosted by Boxing BC and the Capital City Boxing Club
Chuvalo appears on the cover art of Canadian post-grunge alternative rock band Our Lady Peace (OLP)'s eighth studio album Curve. He has the distinction of being the only person other than Saul Fox and the band members themselves to appear on an OLP album cover. He further contributes spoken word vocals to the final song on the album, "Mettle".
Professional boxing record
|73 Wins (64 knockouts, 9 decisions), 18 Losses (2 knockouts, 16 decisions), 2 Draws |
|Win||73-18-2||George Jerome||TKO||3 (12)||11/12/1978||St. Lawrence Market, Toronto, Ontario, Canada||Retained Canada Heavyweight title. This was Chuvalo's last bout, ending a 20 year career as a pro.|
|Win||72-18-2||Earl McLeay||TKO||1 (12)||08/12/1977||Toronto, Ontario, Canada||Retained Canada Heavyweight title. McLeay knocked out by a straight right hand.|
|Win||71-18-2||Bob Felstein||KO||9 (12)||07/03/1977||North York Centennial Centre, Toronto, Ontario, Canada||Won vacant Canada Heavyweight title.|
|Win||70-18-2||Mike Boswell||KO||7 (10)||30/10/1973||Twin Rinks, Cheektowaga, New York, United States|
|Win||69-18-2||Tony Ventura||TKO||3 (10)||25/09/1973||Twin Rinks, Cheektowaga, New York, United States|
|Win||68-18-2||Charlie Boston||KO||2 (?)||05/09/1972||Port-au-Prince, Haiti|
|Win||67-18-2||Tommy Burns||KO||1 (?)||10/08/1972||Nelson, British Columbia, Canada||Retained Canada Heavyweight title.|
|Loss||66-18-2||Muhammad Ali||UD||12||01/05/1972||Pacific Coliseum, Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada||For NABF Heavyweight title.|
|Win||66-17-2||Jim Christopher||KO||2 (10)||21/02/1972||Winnipeg Arena, Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada|
|Win||65-17-2||Charley Chase||TKO||6 (12)||28/01/1972||Pacific Coliseum, Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada||Retained Canada Heavyweight title. Fight was stopped after Chase suffered a broken right hand.|
|Win||64-17-2||Cleveland Williams||UD||10||17/11/1971||Astrodome, Houston, Texas, United States|
|Loss||63-17-2||Jimmy Ellis||UD||10||10/05/1971||Maple Leaf Gardens, Toronto, Ontario, Canada|
|Win||63-16-2||Charles Couture||KO||2 (10)||11/12/1970||Austintown Fitch High School Gym, Youngstown, Ohio, United States|
|Win||62-16-2||Tony Ventura||TKO||4 (10)||05/11/1970||Forum, Montreal, Quebec, Canada|
|Win||61-16-2||Tommy Burns||KO||1 (10)||24/10/1970||Hamilton, Ontario, Canada|
|Win||60-16-2||Mike Bruce||KO||2 (10)||15/08/1970||Kosevo Stadium, Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina|
|Loss||59-16-2||George Foreman||TKO||3 (10)||04/08/1970||Madison Square Garden, New York, New York, United States||Corner stoppage. Chuvalo was rocked by a left hook and was taking punches in the corner without responding.|
|Win||59-15-2||Charlie Reno||KO||3 (10)||30/06/1970||Seattle, Washington, D.C., United States||Reno was knocked down four times in the 3rd round.|
|Win||58-15-2||Gino Ricci||TKO||1 (10)||10/05/1970||Kimberley, British Columbia, Canada|
|Win||57-15-2||Willie Tiger||KO||10 (10)||01/05/1970||Fairgrounds, Detroit, Michigan, United States|
|Win||56-15-2||Jerry Quarry||KO||7 (10)||12/12/1969||Madison Square Garden, New York, New York, United States||In round 7 Quarry was knocked down by a left hook on the top of the head. He rose at the count of 3, but decided to take a knee, he got up at the count of 10 instead of 9 and referee Zach Clayton declared the fight over at 2:59.|
|Win||55-15-2||Leslie Borden||TKO||3 (?)||16/11/1969||Kimberley, British Columbia, Canada|
|Win||54-15-2||Stamford Harris||TKO||3 (?)||08/09/1969||Exhibition Pavilion, Lethbridge, Alberta, Canada|
|Loss||53-15-2||Buster Mathis||UD||12||03/02/1969||Madison Square Garden, New York, New York, United States|
|Win||53-14-2||Dante Cane||TKO||7 (10)||12/11/1968||Maple Leaf Gardens, Toronto, Ontario, Canada|
|Win||52-14-2||Manuel Ramos||TKO||5 (10)||26/09/1968||Madison Square Garden, New York, New York, United States||Ramos down in the 5th round.|
|Win||51-14-2||Vic Brown||TKO||3 (10)||17/09/1968||Maple Leaf Gardens, Toronto, Ontario, Canada||Brown signalled to the referee that he had enough, after he was knocked down twice in the 3rd round.|
|Win||50-14-2||Levi Forte||TKO||2 (10)||03/09/1968||Auditorium, Miami Beach, Florida, United States|
|Win||49-14-2||Johnny Featherman||KO||1 (12)||30/06/1968||Penticton, British Columbia, Canada|
|Win||48-14-2||Jean-Claude Roy||UD||12||05/06/1968||Exhibition Stadium, Regina, Saskatchewan, Canada||Won Canada Heavyweight title. Joe Louis was the referee. There were no knockdowns and neither fighter was in serious trouble.|
|Loss||47-14-2||Joe Frazier||TKO||4 (10)||19/07/1967||Madison Square Garden, New York, New York, United States|
|Win||47-13-2||Archie Ray||TKO||2 (10)||22/06/1967||Adams Field House, Missoula, Montana, United States|
|Win||46-13-2||Willi Besmanoff||TKO||3 (10)||27/05/1967||Cocoa, Florida, United States|
|Win||45-13-2||Willi Besmanoff||TKO||3 (10)||04/04/1967||Auditorium, Miami Beach, Florida, United States|
|Win||44-13-2||Buddy Moore||KO||2 (10)||20/03/1967||Four Seasons Arena, Walpole, Massachusetts, United States|
|Win||43-13-2||Dick Wipperman||TKO||3 (10)||22/02/1967||Armory, Akron, Ohio, United States||Wipperman was knocked down three times in the 3rd round.|
|Win||42-13-2||Vic Brown||KO||4 (10)||16/01/1967||Four Seasons Arena, Walpole, Massachusetts, United States|
|Win||41-13-2||Willie McCormick||KO||3 (10)||16/12/1966||Labrador City, Newfoundland and Labrador, Canada|
|Win||40-13-2||Dave Russell||TKO||2 (10)||28/11/1966||Saint John, New Brunswick, Canada|
|Win||39-13-2||Boston Jacobs||TKO||3 (10)||21/11/1966||Cobo Arena, Detroit, Michigan, United States|
|Win||38-13-2||Dick Wipperman||TKO||5 (10)||12/10/1966||Paul Sauve Arena, Montreal, Quebec, Canada|
|Win||37-13-2||Bob Avery||TKO||2 (15)||15/09/1966||Edmonton, Alberta, Canada||Chuvalo walloped Avery to the canvas five times before the referee stopped the bout.|
|Win||36-13-2||Mel Turnbow||KO||7 (10)||16/08/1966||Paul Sauve Arena, Montreal, Quebec, Canada|
|Loss||35-13-2||Oscar Bonavena||MD||12||23/06/1966||Madison Square Garden, New York, New York, United States|
|Win||35-12-2||Levi Forte||TKO||2 (10)||15/05/1966||Miner's Forum, Glace Bay, Nova Scotia, Canada||Forte's corner threw in the towel.|
|Loss||34-12-2||Muhammad Ali||UD||15||29/03/1966||Maple Leaf Gardens, Toronto, Ontario, Canada||For World Heavyweight title.|
|Loss||34-11-2||Eduardo Corletti||PTS||10||25/01/1966||Olympia, Kensington, London, United Kingdom|
|Win||34-10-2||Joe Bygraves||PTS||10||07/12/1965||Royal Albert Hall, Kensington, London, United Kingdom||Bygraves down in the 10th round.|
|Loss||33-10-2||Ernie Terrell||UD||15||01/11/1965||Maple Leaf Gardens, Toronto, Ontario, Canada||For WBA World Heavyweight title.|
|Win||33-9-2||Orvin Veazey||KO||2 (10)||17/08/1965||Exhibition Stadium, Regina, Saskatchewan, Canada|
|Win||32-9-2||Dave Bailey||KO||3 (10)||30/06/1965||Exhibition Stadium, Regina, Saskatchewan, Canada|
|Win||31-9-2||Ed Sonny Andrews||TKO||1 (10)||07/06/1965||Saint John, New Brunswick, Canada|
|Win||30-9-2||Bill Nielsen||TKO||8 (10)||19/04/1965||Maple Leaf Gardens, Toronto, Ontario, Canada|
|Loss||29-9-2||Floyd Patterson||UD||12||01/02/1965||Madison Square Garden, New York, New York, United States||1965 Fight of the Year by The Ring Magazine.|
|Win||29-8-2||Calvin Butler||KO||3 (10)||10/11/1964||Hull, Quebec, Canada|
|Win||28-8-2||Doug Jones||TKO||11 (12)||02/10/1964||Madison Square Garden, New York, New York, United States||Jones was down once in the 11th, before referee Arthur Mercante stopped it. Chuvalo led on two of the three scorecards at the time of the stoppage.|
|Win||27-8-2||Don Prout||TKO||3 (10)||27/07/1964||Sargent Field, New Bedford, Massachusetts, United States|
|Win||26-8-2||Hugh Mercier||KO||1 (12)||18/03/1964||Regina, Saskatchewan, Canada||Won vacant Canada Heavyweight title.|
|Loss||25-8-2||Zora Folley||UD||10||17/01/1964||Arena, Cleveland, Ohio, United States|
|Draw||25-7-2||Tony Alongi||PTS||10||08/11/1963||Miami Beach, Florida, United States||First decision had been win for Alongi, but recheck showed error in referee's card and commission changed decision.|
|Win||25-7-1||Mike DeJohn||MD||10||27/09/1963||Convention Center, Louisville, Kentucky, United States||DeJohn was down in the 2nd & 6th rounds.|
|Win||24-7-1||Lloyd Washington||KO||2 (10)||18/05/1963||Central High Field House, Battle Creek, Michigan, United States|
|Win||23-7-1||Chico Gardner||KO||4 (?)||29/04/1963||London, Ontario, Canada|
|Win||22-7-1||James Wakefield||TKO||6 (10)||22/04/1963||Arena, Windsor, Ontario, Canada|
|Win||21-7-1||Rico Brooks||TKO||2 (?)||15/03/1963||Arena, Detroit, Michigan, United States|
|Loss||20-7-1||Joe Erskine||DQ||5 (10)||02/10/1961||Toronto, Ontario, Canada||Chuvalo was disqualified for headbutting.|
|Loss||20-6-1||Bob Cleroux||SD||12||08/08/1961||Delormier Stadium, Montreal, Quebec, Canada||Lost Canada Heavyweight title.|
|Win||20-5-1||Willi Besmanoff||TKO||4 (10)||27/06/1961||Maple Leaf Gardens, Toronto, Ontario, Canada|
|Win||19-5-1||Alex Miteff||SD||10||27/03/1961||Maple Leaf Gardens, Toronto, Ontario, Canada|
|Win||18-5-1||Bob Cleroux||UD||12||23/11/1960||Forum, Quebec, Canada||Won Canada Heavyweight title.|
|Loss||17-5-1||Bob Cleroux||SD||12||17/08/1960||Delormier Stadium, Montreal, Quebec, Canada||Lost Canada Heavyweight title.|
|Loss||17-4-1||Pete Rademacher||UD||10||19/07/1960||Maple Leaf Gardens, Toronto, Ontario, Canada|
|Win||17-3-1||Yvon Durelle||KO||12 (12)||17/11/1959||Maple Leaf Gardens, Toronto, Ontario, Canada||Retained Canada Heavyweight title. Durelle was down once in the 1st and 9th, twice in the 10th, and again for the count in the 12th.|
|Win||16-3-1||Frankie Daniels||TKO||7 (10)||14/09/1959||Maple Leaf Gardens, Toronto, Ontario, Canada|
|Loss||15-3-1||Pat McMurtry||UD||10||17/10/1958||Madison Square Garden, New York, New York, United States|
|Win||15-2-1||James J Parker||KO||1 (12)||15/09/1959||Maple Leaf Gardens, Toronto, Ontario, Canada||Won vacant Canada Heavyweight title. Parker was knocked down three times.|
|Draw||14-2-1||Alex Miteff||PTS||10||16/06/1958||Maple Leaf Gardens, Toronto, Ontario, Canada||Miteff was knocked down in the 10th round.|
|Win||14–2||Howard King||KO||2 (10)||21/04/1958||Toronto, Ontario, Canada|
|Win||13–2||Julio Mederos||UD||10||27/01/1958||Maple Leaf Gardens, Toronto, Ontario, Canada||Mederos was knocked down twice in the 2nd round.|
|Loss||12–2||Bob Baker||UD||10||09/09/1957||Maple Leaf Gardens, Toronto, Ontario, Canada|
|Win||12–1||Joe Schmolze||KO||4 (10)||06/06/1957||Fort William, Toronto, Ontario, Canada||Joe Schmolze fought this fight under the alias "Joe Olsen". Schmolze was a substitute for Kid Gage.|
|Win||11–1||Emil Brtko||TKO||2 (10)||04/22/1957||Toronto, Ontario, Canada|
|Win||10–1||Moses Graham||KO||2 (10)||25/03/1957||Maple Leaf Gardens, Toronto, Ontario, Canada|
|Win||9–1||Walter Hafer||KO||3 (8)||04/03/1957||Maple Leaf Gardens, Toronto, Ontario, Canada|
|Win||8–1||Sid Russell||KO||1 (8)||14/01/1957||Maple Leaf Gardens, Toronto, Ontario, Canada|
|Win||7–1||Bob Biehler||UD||8||19/11/1956||Maple Leaf Gardens, Toronto, Ontario, Canada|
|Loss||6–1||Howard King||SD||8||22/10/1956||Toronto, Ontario, Canada|
|Win||6–0||Joe Evans||KO||1 (8)||10/09/1956||Maple Leaf Gardens, Toronto, Ontario, Canada|
|Win||5–0||Johnny Arthur||UD||8||11/06/1956||Maple Leaf Gardens, Toronto, Ontario, Canada|
|Win||4–0||Ed McGee||KO||1 (?)||23/04/1956||Toronto, Ontario, Canada||Jack Dempsey Heavyweight Novice Tournament.|
|Win||3–0||Ross Gregory||KO||1 (?)||23/04/1956||Toronto, Ontario, Canada||Jack Dempsey Heavyweight Novice Tournament.|
|Win||2–0||Jim Leonard||KO||2 (?)||23/04/1956||Toronto, Ontario, Canada||Jack Dempsey Heavyweight Novice Tournament.|
|Win||1–0||Gordon Baldwin||TKO||2 (?)||23/04/1956||Toronto, Ontario, Canada||Jack Dempsey Heavyweight Novice Tournament.|
- Zawadzki, Edward (2001). The Ultimate Canadian Sports Trivia Book, Volume 1. Canada: Dundurn Press Ltd. p. 216. ISBN 9780888822376.
- "Great catcher poor pitcher that's George", Jim Proudfoot, Toronto Star, March 30, 1966
- Episode: Kitchen Knockout, HGTV.ca: Holmes on Holmes, http://www.hgtv.ca/ontv/titledetails.aspx?titleid=111645.
- 2010 BC Golden Gloves program
- Jure Čuvalo (Georg Chuvalo) danas u Sarajevu, sutra u Ljubuškom: http://www.ljubuski-online.info/bih/novosti/8825-jure-cuvalo-georg-chuvalo-danas-u-sarajevu-sutra-u-ljubuskom-foto.html.
</references/>^ Chuvalo, George (November 2013). "Lost Boys". Toronto Life Magazine.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to George Chuvalo.|
- George Chuvalo's Official Fight Against Drugs Website
- Professional boxing record for George Chuvalo from BoxRec
- CBC Digital Archives - Still Standing: The People's Champion George Chuvalo
- Historica.ca - Footprints - George Chuvalo
- Ian Palmer's TigerBoxing article on Chuvalo
- The Canadian Encyclopedia
- Cyber Boxing Zone Encyclopedia
- CBC Digital Archives. The Biggest Fight of George Chuvalo's Life
- George Chuvalo at the Internet Movie Database