José Basora

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José Basora
Real name José Basora
Rated at Middleweight
Height 6 ft 0 in (1.83 m)
Nationality Puerto Rico Puerto Rican
Born (1918-02-08)February 8, 1918
Lajas Puerto Rico
Died January 4, 1993(1993-01-04) (aged 74)
Bronx, New York
Boxing record
Total fights 106
Wins 78
Wins by KO 44
Losses 20
Draws 7
No contests 0

José Basora, born (February 8, 1918, in Lajas, Puerto Rico - January 4, 1993), was a professional boxer. He was married to Emilia Rivera de Jesus for 44 years and had two children (Maria and Jose) and lived in New York City-the Bronx. Basora's wife died in 1988. José Basora died on January 4, 1993.

José Basora fought professionally for thirteen years. His career spanned three decades, starting in 1939 and ending in 1952.

Boxing career[edit]

Basora began fighting as a professional on January 7, 1939, with a first round knockout over Artie Baker. He had three fights in one month, all victories. The first blemish to appear on his record was a four round draw (tie), against Joe Bologna on February 17, 1939. Basora then had a streak of 25 wins in a row with eleven consecutive knockouts.

On March 2, 1941, Basora met famed Cuban boxer Kid Tunero, losing for the first time in his career. Tunero, who had 101 previous fights, defeated Basora in a ten round decision in Havana, Cuba. Basora's next four fights were splits (two wins and two losses) before a New York meeting with Holman Williams on September 29 of 1941. Basora lost to Williams in a six round decision. On January 9, 1942, he and Williams met again, with Williams once again winning by decision after six rounds.

Basora became a highly heralded boxer on the night of May 12, 1942, when he held Jake LaMotta to a ten round draw in New York,NY. Basora and LaMotta met again on June 16, with Basora beating LaMotta by decision in ten rounds. On September 17, Basora met future world Heavyweight champion Ezzard Charles; Basora was stopped by Charles in five rounds, suffering his first professional defeat by knockout.

Basora promptly returned to winning: victorious in eight of his next nine fights, with one draw. Then, on June 17, 1943, he fought Andy Holland in West Springfield, Massachusetts, with their bout declared a no contest. Heavy rain fell that day and, as the contest was held in an outdoor arena, the rain made visibility very difficult for the contestants.

On August 9, Basora avenged his previous defeats at the hands of Holman Williams by outpointing him over eight rounds in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. On September 17 he and LaMotta fought for a third time, with LaMotta winning by a ten round decision. Almost one month later, on October 15, Basora defeated Fritzie Zivic, another world champion boxer, by a unanimous decision in Detroit, Michigan. Zivic had come into their encounter with 175 previous fights, of which he had won 131.

José Basora won three more fights, then he lost a fourth rematch against Holman Williams, being outpointed by his arch-rival on April 10, 1944 over ten rounds, at San Francisco, California. Basora then reeled off a streak of three more wins before meeting Williams for a fifth time. Williams and Basora drew over ten rounds on October 2 in Philadelphia. Basora soon returned to the ring, beating another heralded contender of the era, Al Jonson, over ten rounds by decision on October 30.

His next fight has been described by boxing historians as Basora's finest moment (an opinion that has been argued as other boxing historians claim that his win over LaMotta should be held as Basora's best moment). Regardless, Basora met Sugar Ray Robinson for the first time on May 14, 1945, holding the man considered by many to be boxing's all time best fighter to a ten round draw in Philadelphia. On August 10, 1945 Basora took on LaMotta for the fourth time. LaMotta stopped Basora in the ninth round.

Basora made his Puerto Rico debut on January 29, 1946, when he outpointed Carlos Perez after ten rounds. Basora held six consecutive bouts in San Juan, enriching an already existing fan base in the island country. On March 17, he beat Mario Raul Ochoa in ten rounds by decision for the "Middleweight championship of the Antilles" . Basora and Ochoa had an immediate rematch, without Basora's newly won belt at stake, on July 4, at San Juan, and Basora won by a third round knockout.

On June 10, 1947, Basora met popular fighter Bobby Richardson at Youngstown, Ohio, outpointing Richardson over ten rounds. Just seventeen days later, Basora returned to Detroit, where he faced Tommy Yarosz, a top ranked fighter of the time. Basora lost by a ten round decision. Fans at the fight protested the decision. The fight, however, took a rather dramatic turn after it was over, as Basora collapsed in his dressing room and required hospitalization. He was diagnosed with fainting due to blows to the head that he had received against Yarosz.

Only four months later, Basora returned to the ring. After a win, he faced Holman Williams for the sixth time, on November 3 in San Juan. Basora outpointed Williams over ten rounds. Basora made two more fights, and he then met Williams for a seventh time, on March 3, 1948 in Chicago, Illinois. Basora beat Williams by a fourth round knockout when Williams suffered a cut to his mouth.

On March 2, 1949, Basora met Henry Brimm, who was 23-8-3 coming into their bout, held at Coral Gables, Florida. Basora outpointed Brimm over ten rounds. By that time, Basora had been ranked as the world's top Middleweight challenger for some period. Basora defeated Brimm again, by a ten round decision, on May 4 at New York.

After winning one fight and losing another one, Basora got his first try at a world title, when he faced Sugar Ray Robinson in their rematch, for Robinson's Pennsylvania's world Middleweight title (the bout was recognized as a world championship fight only by the Pennsylvania state athletic commission), on August 25, 1950 in Scranton. This fight was historic, because Robinson established a record for the quickest knockout in a world title bout, defeating Basora only 50 seconds after the bout started. This record stood for 38 years.

Basora went on boxing for two more years. Well past his prime, however, he lost five of his next six bouts, including one against Holly Mims and another one against Rocky Marciano rival, Harry Matthews. After losing by a ten round decision to Frenchman Robert Villemain, Basora retired permanently from boxing. His loss to Villemain took place on June 16, 1952, in Brooklyn.

Basora had a record of 77 wins, 20 losses and 7 draws, with one no-contest and 44 knockout wins in 105 bouts.

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