Young Corbett III
|Young Corbett III|
|Real name||Raffaele Giordano|
|Born||May 27, 1905
Rionero in Vulture, Basilicata, Italy
|Died||July 15, 1993 (age 88)
Auberry, California, United States
|Wins by KO||33|
Young Corbett III (born Raffaele Giordano, May 27, 1905 – July 15, 1993) was an Italian-born American boxer. Regarded as one of the greatest fighters of all time, he was the world Welterweight boxing champion in 1933 and the Middleweight champion in 1938. A tough southpaw, he did not have strong punching power but was known for his great speed.
Statistical boxing website BoxRec lists Corbett as the #3 ranked welterweight of all-time, as well as the #1 ranked southpaw of the category. He was inducted into the Italian American Sports Hall of Fame in 1982 and the International Boxing Hall of Fame in 2004.
Born in Rionero in Vulture, in the Italian region of Basilicata, from Vito Giordano and Gelsomina Capobianco, he moved with his family to the United States when he was still an infant and was erroneously registered as Raffaele Capabianca Giordano. After four years of living in Pittsburgh, he moved to Fresno, California, and began boxing in 1919 while still a 14-year-old "newsboy." Initially known as Ralph Giordano, he got his stage name when a ring announcer told him he would not present him as Ralph Giordano and dubbed him "Young Corbett III".
Corbett fought many great fighters of his era. For example, he engaged in a four-fight series with future welterweight champion Young Jack Thompson, winning three and drawing once. He also scored wins over Jack Zivic, Sgt. Sammy Baker, and welterweight champion Jackie Fields and future middleweight king Ceferino Garcia.
On February 22, 1933, Corbett captured the welterweight championship of the world by decisioning Jackie Fields over 10 rounds. He hurt his left thumb in the fifth round but continued to fight undaunted. The referee Jack Kennedy remembered Corbett as "vicious in those first five rounds. He ripped him like a tiger. Fields could not protect himself". Three months later, he was dethroned by Hall of Famer Jimmy McLarnin via a one round knockout.
Corbett then moved up to the middleweight division. He scored wins over future light heavy champ Gus Lesnevich (TKO 5), as well as Hall of Famers Mickey Walker, Billy Conn. On February 22, 1938 he beat Fred Apostoli, winning the middleweight championship. On November 18 of that year, he challenged Apostoli again, but was stopped in 8 rounds.
Retirement and death
Corbett boxed until August 20, 1940, winning his last fight against Richard "Sheik" Rangel. He retired with a 124-12-15 (32 KOs) record. He later operated a bar in Fresno. On October 2, 1945 Corbett survived a serious car accident, suffering a fractured skull and other injuries. He died after a long illness in Auberry, California at the age of 88. A statue of him, posed in a fighting stance and boxing gloves, was erected in Fresno.
Beside the boxing career, Corbett was a physical education instructor for the California Highway Patrol and a grape grower. His cousin Al Manfredo (1912-1990) also was a boxer and later a boxing manager. Corbett is the great-grandfather of American football player Matt Giordano.
- Roberts, Skutt, p.90
- All-Time Welterweight Rankings. BoxRec.com. Retrieved on 2014-04-11.
- Young Corbett III/NIASHF, NIASHF.com, Retrieved on 7-10-14
- Young Corbett III/IBHOF, IBHOF.com, Retrieved on 3-28-08
- "Article about Young Corbett III" (PDF). Retrieved 2014-05-21.
- "Young Corbett III - Boxrec Boxing Encyclopaedia". Boxrec.com. Retrieved 2014-05-21.
- Roberts, Skutt, p.91
- March 29, 1999 (1999-03-29). "McLarnin Spotted Flaw, Stunned Young Corbett - Los Angeles Times". Articles.latimes.com. Retrieved 2014-05-21.
- Young Corbett III - Non c'era solo Rocco Mazzola (Italian)
- Young Corbett's Professional Boxing Record. BoxRec.com. Retrieved on 2014-05-18.
- James B. Roberts, Alexander G. Skutt, The Boxing Register: International Boxing Hall of Fame Official Record Book, McBooks Press, 2006
|Awards and achievements|
|World Welterweight Champion
February 22, 1933 – May 29, 1933