Tony Galento

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Tony Galento
Galento in November 1938
Real nameDominick Anthony Galento
Nickname(s)Two Ton Tony
Height5 ft 9 in (1.75 m)
Reach175 cm (69 in)?
Born(1910-03-12)March 12, 1910
Orange, New Jersey, United States
DiedJuly 22, 1979(1979-07-22) (aged 69)
Orange, New Jersey, United States
Boxing record
Total fights112
Wins by KO57
No contests1

Dominick Anthony Galento (March 12, 1910 – July 22, 1979) was an American heavyweight boxer.[1] He is best remembered for scoring a third-round knockdown against Joe Louis in a world title stoppage loss in June 1939. Active from the late 1920s to the early 1940s, he compiled a record of 79 wins, 26 losses, and 6 draws. Besides Louis, Galento fought against several other prominent heavyweights of his era—including Al Ettore, Lou Nova, and Max and Buddy Baer.[2] Though assumed by some sportswriters to have been a reference to his "pulchritude" or physical appearance, Galento's nickname, "Two Ton", was apparently derived from his work as an iceman: a job he pursued in tandem with his pugilistic career. On one occasion, as a result of his ice-lugging commitments, Galento was reportedly upbraided by his cornerman for being late for a bout. "Take it easy", the New Jersey-born slugger reputedly replied to his colleague's complaint, "I had two tons of ice to deliver on my way here. I'll be right up."[3] In addition to "Two Ton", Galento was also known as the "Jersey Nightstick", the "TNT Kid", the "One-Man Riot", and the "beer barrel that walks like a man".[4][5] The boxing historian Bert Sugar called him a "human butcher block".[6]

Galento is widely regarded as having been one of boxing’s most colorful characters.[7] According to Chris Mead, a biographer of Joe Louis, he "was a press agent's dream."[8] Anecdotes, some of which may be apocryphal, pertaining to his outlandish behavior and unschooled wit are common. On learning about Gene Tunney's predilection for reading George Bernard Shaw, Samuel Butler, and William Shakespeare while in training camp, Galento is said to have remarked, in characteristic fashion, "Shakespeare? I ain't never hearda him. He must be one of dem European bums[.] Sure as hell I'll moider dat bum."[9] An alternative rendering of Galento's commentary on Shakespeare runs as follows: "Never hoid of him... What's he, one of those foreign heavyweights? I'll moida da bum."[10] To Galento, all his potential opponents and competitors, even Joe Louis and the Bard of Avon, were "bums".

After retiring as a boxer, Galento took to professional wrestling. He squared off against fellow ex-heavyweight contender Primo Carnera, grappled an octopus in a giant fish tank in Seattle, fought a 550 lb bear in a cage in Newark, and boxed a kangaroo in Atlantic City.[11] Among Galento's human adversaries in the wrestling ring, other than Carnera, were Man Mountain Dean, Kola Kwariani, and "Nature Boy" Buddy Rogers.[12]

Galento, when an "old man", was once encountered by the palaeontologist Stephen Jay Gould in a bar in upstate New York. For Gould, Galento was not a figure of fun, but of pity—the perfect picture of an also-ran: "still cadging drinks in exchange for the true story of his moment of glory: when he knocked Joe Louis down before losing their fight for the heavyweight championship."[13]

Following complications caused by diabetes, Galento died of a heart attack in July 1979. In the period immediately prior to his death, he underwent two significant surgeries. The week before he died, his right leg was amputated.[14] Two years earlier, in 1977, his left leg was "amputated at mid-calf at Beth Israel Hospital."[15] Of Italian parentage, Galento was buried from the Roman Catholic Our Lady of Mount Carmel Church in Orange, New Jersey. Galento's funeral mass was attended by Jersey Joe Walcott and Tippy Larkin. Though he had become friends with Galento, Joe Louis, owing to his "ailing" state, was unable to attend his funeral. Louis did, however, attend a "Galento testimonial" in Newark in 1978.[16]

Galento's death was adverted to by the Democratic Party politician Joseph Minish in the United States House of Representatives.[17]


Galento was a "slow and undisciplined fighter" with a short reach.[18] Time magazine described him as a "throwback to Stone-Age man" and disparaged his defence, which, it declared, took "care of itself."[19] According to the boxing writer Bob Mee, he had "all the finesse of a charging rhino".[20] The journalist Lew Freedman has written that if boxing as practiced by Joe Louis was indeed the "Sweet Science", as "practiced by Galento it might as well have been a different sport."[21] Despite his reputation for stylistic crudity, Galento had several quality attributes. He fought out of a crouch and had a formidable, and unpredictable, leaping left hook. He was also physically strong, durable, and fearless.[22] The licensed boxing judge and combat sports commentator David L. Hudson Jr. writes that Galento "had two characteristics that made him a tough opponent: He could absorb massive amounts of punishment, and he could punch."[23] In a preview of his fight with Max Baer, the sportswriter Grantland Rice wrote that Galento "expects to take his share of punches as part of the game. He absorbs them like open buds absorb the dew."[24]

Regarding his allegedly unsportsmanlike conduct in the ring, Galento is reported to have said: "Y’know, they usta call me a dirty fighter. Heck, I trained hard, maybe drank a little beer, took three showers a day and dose newspaper bums said I was a dirty fighter, da bums."[25] Lou Nova, whom Galento defeated in a poorly officiated and bloody encounter in September 1939, called him a "worm" and intimated that the "New Jersey jellyroll" made illicit use of his thumbs. "Baer may get rough, but he doesn't deliberately try to maim a guy", Nova declared. "I don't mind saying that there is one fighter I don't like. That's Galento. He is... a worm!"[26]


Sources differ regarding Galento's height. He may have been 5'8" or he may have been 5'9".[27][28][29] One early news feature, in which Galento is described as a "fistic curio" and a "low-chassised New Jersey youth", claims that he was only 5'6".[30] Whatever Galento would have measured, what seems certain is that he was on the shorter side for a heavyweight. As to weight, however, he was on the heavier side. Contrasting his physique with that of Joe Louis, who was a "trim six-footer at 200 pounds", Joseph Monninger records that Galento "stood a mere 5'8" and weighed a flabby 240 pounds."[31] A contemporary news item concerning their title fight states that Galento weighed in at 23314 lb versus Louis's 20014 lb.[32]

Various accounts of Galento's approach to training and preparation suggest that it was anything but orthodox. Monninger relates that Galento once wagered ten dollars that he could eat fifty hot dogs before taking part in a bout. Though he apparently consumed two hot dogs in excess of his bet (for a total of fifty-two), and consequently was so bloated as to be unable to fit comfortably into his trunks, Galento dispatched his "hapless" nemesis, the 6'4" "country puncher" Arthur De Kuh, in the third or fourth round: bloodying his nose and sending him crashing to the canvas.[33] As told by Mee, Galento's conception of exercise was highly unusual: "his idea of roadwork was to sit in a car smoking a fat cigar while his sparring partners got themselves in shape by plodding alongside."[34] Mead concurs. Galento, he avows, "did no roadwork and let his considerable appetite run free."[35] In 1937, Eddie Brietz, a sportswriter with the Associated Press, noted that "[u]sually reliable sources" swore that the night before he "kayoed Al Ettore in Philly" Galento "made away with 24 hot dogs, six shots of booze and... a dozen beers".[36] A Sunday Star photograph of Galento in the runup to his April 1941 "10-round tiff" with Buddy Baer pictures him scoffing a hot dog beside a plate of dozens more.[37]

The legendary boxing trainer Ray Arcel, whose charges over a long and distinguished career included Roberto Durán and Larry Holmes,[38] was not a fan of Galento. Tasked with training him by Jack Dempsey in 1933, Arcel believed that "[t]rying to get Galento fit was a farce", that he "was just bone lazy", and that working with him was a "waste of time and money". Dempsey himself, though he had seen great potential in the young Galento—potential enough to become his manager—came to agree. As Donald Dewey relays in his 2012 biography of Arcel (drawing on a column "floridly ghosted" under Arcel's by-line in the New York Journal-American in 1948), Dempsey's disillusionment with Galento culminated in the 'Manassa Mauler' humiliating the "New Jersey Fat Boy" in the ring at Stillman's Gym in New York City:

Dempsey strolled quietly into the gymnasium and walked up to the balcony while Galento was going through the motions of 'working out.' He was fatter than ever, hopelessly out of condition, and quite obviously doing nothing about it... He didn't see Dempsey and continued waddling around the ring, clowning and wisecracking as he fooled with his sparring partners. After watching a couple of rounds, Dempsey came down to ringside. He was wearing a beautifully cut light gray suit, tan and white shoes, and white silk shirt. When Tony caught sight of him, he gave him a big hello. 'You look like a million bucks dis afternoon,' he says to him. 'Never mind how I look, you big bum,' Dempsey answers. 'Let's see you do some work.'


He [Dempsey] took off his coat and stripped right down to his white silk monogrammed underpants and vaulted into the ring: 'Now, Tony,' he told him. 'It's you and me. I'll show you how we used to do it.' He began humming a little tune—an old Dempsey mannerism—and then, as Galento backed away, he flashed into action. Jack was turned forty but his body was as lean and hard and tanned as ever, and for three memorable minutes we saw the old Dempsey, the murderous, tear-away Manassa Mauler... What he did to Galento in those three minutes was nobody's business. He ripped punches into the pudgy torso from all angles, split his lips with a terrific left, and sent the blood squirting from his nose with a right.


[Dempsey chased after Galento], throwing punches until I [Arcel] called time. Still breathing easily, Dempsey ducked under the ropes and began to dress while Galento stood shaking his head in a semi-daze and trying to wipe the blood from his face with the backs of his gloves. When he [Dempsey] was dressed, he threw Galento a contemptuous look. 'That's how we used to fight, Galento,' he said. 'Now I'm through with you. You can find yourself another manager.' Then he turned to me and said, 'You were right, Ray. It's a waste of time trying to make a champ out of that chump.'[39]

Comparing Galento to Joe Louis in terms of their professionalism, the sportswriter Henry McLemore wrote that whereas Louis "shuns alcohol, tobacco, [and] late hours", "Galento drinks, smokes, and stays up later than an owl with insomnia." "Louis believes in the outdoor life and healthful exercises", McLemore continued, but "Galento likes to train in a nice dark, smoke-filled poolhall, where the terrific racket made by songbirds, bees and rippling brooks doesn't interfere with his concentration."[40] In addition to boxing and (latterly) wrestling, Galento owned and ran a saloon.[41] He was arrested on a gambling charge in 1946.[42]

On account of his relative corpulence, Galento's name, inclusive of "Two Ton", was at times used as a childish insult or taunt. The prominent American literary critic Henry Louis Gates Jr. recounts in his memoir Colored People that during his childhood his father and brother would call him "Two-Ton Tony Galento" due to his being overweight.[43]

Heavyweight championship fight[edit]

On June 28, 1939, Galento fought for the heavyweight championship of the world against Joe Louis. At this time, Louis was heavily favored (8 to 1) to stop Galento. Galento was not impressed. In a pre-fight interview, Galento summed up his perspective on the fight as follows:

  • Reporter: "Tony, what do you think your chances are against Joe Louis?"
  • Galento: "Joe who?"
  • Reporter: "Joe Louis."
  • Galento: "I never hoid of da bum."

He also predicted that he would "moida da bum", and telephoned Louis daily to personally inform him that he was a bum and that Galento would "moida him"—this colorful version of early tubthumping seems in retrospect to be Galento's standard manner of presentation (Look, March 14, 1939; Vol. 3, No. 6).[44] Louis later said "He called me everything." Though known as a splendid self-promoter, Galento had the significant help of "Uncle" Mike Jacobs to sell the fight via ballyhoo. Jacobs frequently posed Galento for photo ops and news stories with beer bottles, steins and kegs; an openly clowning shot had Galento drinking from a milk bottle, with Jacobs trying to grab it away.[45] Long before George Foreman was a cheeseburger-eating contender, Galento captured fans' imaginations as a challenger who trained on beer. It would seem almost necessary that, in order to show he was serious and properly prepared for the Louis fight, Galento stated that he had not taken alcohol for two days before the bout.

The two fought in Yankee Stadium in New York City. The short, balding Galento stunned the crowd, and his opponent, by staggering and hurting Louis with a powerful left hook in the first round. In the second round, Louis began hitting Galento with vicious combinations, opened a cut in Galento's mouth and floored the challenger with a powerful left hook that actually lifted Galento off his feet. This was the first time Galento had been knocked down in his professional career. In the third round, Louis was again hitting Galento with combinations when Galento caught him with a beautifully-timed inside left hook; this time Louis went down. Louis, however, got up quickly, but took no chances for the remainder of the round. The fourth round was brutal for Galento, who had no defense and was wide open for Louis' assault. Louis hit him with murderous combinations which forced the referee to stop the bout.

After the fight, Galento was inconsolable. Whitey Bimstein, acting cut man:

... he is sitting there with blood pouring from his eyes, his nose and his cheek. He won't let me touch the cuts. He won't let me take off his gloves He pushes me away every time I try to do something for him, and bellows, "You guys wouldn't let me fight my own fight. I'd've knocked that mug cold."

Galento contended throughout life that his trainers convinced him to change styles, and to fight cleanly; he regretted he did not fight "his" fight and foul Louis. Only a year after the Louis fight, Bimstein offered a different perspective, asserting the bob and weave Galento adopted in the first two rounds was working, citing the knockdown of Louis in the third frame as proof. "Then [Galento] thought he was John L. Sullivan, and came up straight to slug", said Bimstein, "and you just can't do that with Louis."[46]

Louis and Galento appeared together on The Way It Was, a sports nostalgia program (PBS), on January 29, 1976. The episode was lively, due to Galento's still-direct and colorful style of engagement. Louis showed a surprising side of himself when, after fending off a question by veteran fight commentator Don Dunphy, regarding any ill feeling vs. Max Schmeling (Louis stating he and Schmeling had not truly been adversaries but indeed "good friends"), he then pointed at Galento and stated, "But that little fellow ... he really got me mad. All those mean things he said about me while training for our fight. He got me mad, all right." Louis furthered this statement by revealing that his anger by fight time was such that he had decided to "carry" Galento, i.e. to drag the fight out in order to "punish him for those nasty things". After suffering the knockdown, however, Louis changed his mind: "[Galento] hit too hard. So I knocked him out as quickly as I could."[47]

Other fights[edit]

Galento's other two famous fights were with former champion Max Baer, and contender Lou Nova. The Nova fight is reputed to be one of the dirtiest and bloodiest fights ever fought. Nova was knocked down five times. Galento kneed, butted, gouged, hit below the belt, and on at least two knockdowns, Galento "fell" with his 230 lb (104 kg) on Nova, knees first. Referee George Blake finally stopped the mayhem at 2:44 of the 14th round.

Galento's fight with Max Baer ended when the referee stopped the bout in the eighth round. On the day of the Baer fight, Galento decided to first stop off at his bar. There he had a big bowl of spaghetti with meat balls, washed down with half a case of beer. After his meal, Galento became embroiled in an argument with his brother. The dispute ended when his brother threw his beer glass in Galento's face, severely cutting his lip. Galento was forced to get the cut stitched up, hours before the fight. Baer re-opened the cut in the first round, forcing Galento to swallow blood for the remainder of the fight. After the fight, Galento blamed his inability to "hook him around the head and butt him" for the loss. His record was 80–26–5 with 57 knockouts.

Less known is Galento's battle with Ernie Schaaf in 1932 (Newark). Schaaf was at the time ranked No. 3 by The Ring, and the fight was considered a stepping stone to a title fight with then-champion Jack Sharkey. The fight seemed jinxed from the first, however, rained out three times before finally taking place. It went the scheduled 10-round distance, but was a seesaw affair, rife with brutal infighting and containing many illegal blows. "Two-Ton Tony" repeatedly struck Schaaf behind the neck with right hand chops ('rabbit punches'). Schaaf, who recovered quickly, was stronger at the end and won the decision, but did not leave his dressing room table for long hours, while Galento merely collected his purse and went home. Schaaf's career spiraled down, culminating in a harrowing beating from Max Baer, followed by his death from light blows early in his final fight, vs. Primo Carnera. Fight lore has long held Baer's devastating right hand responsible for the ring death of Schaaf, but in the hardline culture of the 1930s, Newark sportswriters were quick to claim Galento and the above battle-royal as having done the telling damage.[48]

Professional boxing record[edit]

112 fights 79 wins 26 losses
By knockout 57 6
By decision 21 18
By disqualification 1 2
Draws 6
No contests 1
No. Result Record Opponent Type Round,time Date Age Location Notes
112 Win 79–26–6 (1) Jack Conley KO 3 (10) Dec 4, 1943 33 years, 267 days Forum, Wichita, Kansas, U.S.
111 Win 78–26–6 (1) Fred Blassie KO 2 (10), 0:25 Jun 21, 1943 33 years, 101 days Caswell Park, Knoxville, Tennessee, U.S.
110 Win 77–26–6 (1) Herbie Katz KO 1 (10), 0:25 Jun 1, 1943 33 years, 81 days Phillips Field, Tampa, Florida, U.S.
109 Loss 76–26–6 (1) Buddy Baer TKO 7 (10) Apr 8, 1941 31 years, 27 days Uline Arena, Washington, D.C., U.S.
108 Loss 76–25–6 (1) Max Baer RTD 7 (15) Jul 2, 1940 30 years, 112 days Roosevelt Stadium, Jersey City, New Jersey, U.S.
107 Win 76–24–6 (1) Lou Nova TKO 14 (15), 2:24 Sep 15, 1939 29 years, 187 days Municipal Stadium, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, U.S.
106 Loss 75–24–6 (1) Joe Louis TKO 4 (15), 2:29 Jun 28, 1939 29 years, 108 days Yankee Stadium, New York City, New York, U.S. For NYSAC, NBA, and The Ring heavyweight titles
105 Win 75–23–6 (1) Abe Feldman TKO 3 (10), 0:31 Feb 23, 1939 28 years, 348 days Orange Bowl, Miami, Florida, U.S.
104 Win 74–23–6 (1) Natie Brown KO 4 (10), 1:13 Feb 3, 1939 28 years, 328 days Olympia Stadium, Detroit, Michigan, U.S.
103 Win 73–23–6 (1) Jorge Brescia KO 1 (10), 1:41 Jan 19, 1939 28 years, 313 days Armory, Newark, New Jersey, U.S.
102 Win 72–23–6 (1) Dick Daniels KO 3 (4) Dec 16, 1938 28 years, 279 days Armory, Minneapolis, Minnesota, U.S.
101 Win 71–23–6 (1) Otis Thomas KO 9 (12), 1:35 Dec 7, 1938 28 years, 270 days Arena, Saint Louis, Missouri, U.S.
100 Win 70–23–6 (1) Harry Thomas TKO 3 (10) Nov 14, 1938 28 years, 247 days Convention Hall, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, U.S.
99 Win 69–23–6 (1) Nathan Mann KO 2 (10), 2:04 May 13, 1938 28 years, 62 days Madison Square Garden, New York City, New York, U.S.
98 Win 68–23–6 (1) Charley Massera KO 3 (10) Jan 5, 1938 27 years, 299 days Armory, Orange, New Jersey, U.S.
97 Win 67–23–6 (1) Leroy Haynes TKO 3 (10) Nov 18, 1937 27 years, 251 days Convention Hall, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, U.S.
96 Win 66–23–6 (1) Lorenzo Pack KO 6 (10) Sep 28, 1937 27 years, 200 days Convention Hall, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, U.S.
95 Win 65–23–6 (1) Al Ettore TKO 8 (10), 2:55 Jul 27, 1937 27 years, 137 days Velodrome, Nutley, New Jersey, U.S.
94 Loss 64–23–6 (1) Arturo Godoy PTS 6 Jun 22, 1937 27 years, 102 days Comiskey Park, Chicago, Illinois, U.S.
93 Draw 64–22–6 (1) Eddie Mader PTS 10 Jun 14, 1937 27 years, 94 days Ollemar Field, Irvington, New Jersey, U.S.
92 Loss 64–22–5 (1) Arturo Godoy PTS 10 Apr 28, 1937 27 years, 47 days Hippodrome, New York City, New York, U.S.
91 Win 64–21–5 (1) Don Petrin PTS 10 Mar 8, 1937 26 years, 361 days Armory, Newark, New Jersey, U.S.
90 Win 63–21–5 (1) Jack Moran KO 2 (10), 1:51 Feb 15, 1937 26 years, 340 days Laurel Garden, Newark, New Jersey, U.S.
89 Draw 62–21–5 (1) Don Petrin PTS 10 Jan 18, 1937 26 years, 312 days Laurel Garden, Newark, New Jersey, U.S.
88 Win 62–21–4 (1) Terry Mitchell KO 3 (10) Dec 3, 1936 26 years, 266 days Armory, Newark, New Jersey, U.S.
87 Win 61–21–4 (1) Roy Lazer TKO 6 (10) Nov 9, 1936 26 years, 242 days Laurel Garden, Newark, New Jersey, U.S.
86 Win 60–21–4 (1) Izzy Singer KO 8 (10) Oct 12, 1936 26 years, 214 days Laurel Garden, Newark, New Jersey, U.S.
85 Win 59–21–4 (1) Izzy Singer PTS 10 Sep 14, 1936 26 years, 186 days Meadowbrook Field, Newark, New Jersey, U.S.
84 Win 58–21–4 (1) Freddie Fiducia KO 2 (10) Aug 24, 1936 26 years, 165 days Meadowbrook Field, Newark, New Jersey, U.S.
83 Win 57–21–4 (1) James J. Taylor KO 1 (10) Jul 28, 1936 26 years, 138 days Meadowbrook Field, Newark, New Jersey, U.S.
82 Loss 56–21–4 (1) Al Gainer TKO 4 (10), 1:04 Jun 19, 1936 26 years, 99 days Yankee Stadium, New York City, New York, U.S.
81 Draw 56–20–4 (1) Al Delaney PTS 8 May 11, 1936 26 years, 60 days Laurel Garden, Newark, New Jersey, U.S.
80 Win 56–20–3 (1) Eddie Blunt PTS 10 Apr 6, 1936 26 years, 25 days Laurel Garden, Newark, New Jersey, U.S.
79 Loss 55–20–3 (1) Al Delaney PTS 6 Feb 29, 1936 26 years, 17 days Ridgewood Grove, New York City, New York, U.S.
78 Loss 55–19–3 (1) Eddie Mader PTS 6 Nov 1, 1935 25 years, 234 days Madison Square Garden, New York City, New York, U.S.
77 Win 55–18–3 (1) Al Boros KO 10 (10) Sep 10, 1935 25 years, 182 days Meadowbrook Field, Newark, New Jersey, U.S.
76 Win 54–18–3 (1) Willie McGee PTS 6 Aug 29, 1935 25 years, 170 days Madison Square Garden, New York City, New York, U.S.
75 Win 53–18–3 (1) Gene Mickens PTS 10 Jul 29, 1935 25 years, 139 days Meadowbrook Field, Newark, New Jersey, U.S.
74 Win 52–18–3 (1) Anthony Ashrut KO 1 (6) Jun 13, 1935 25 years, 93 days Madison Square Garden Bowl, New York City, New York, U.S.
73 Win 51–18–3 (1) Larry Johnson KO 5 (6) Mar 5, 1935 24 years, 358 days Scott Hall, Elizabeth, New Jersey, U.S.
72 Win 50–18–3 (1) Eddie Karolak TKO 4 (10) Feb 4, 1935 24 years, 329 days Laurel Garden, Newark, New Jersey, U.S.
71 Win 49–18–3 (1) Bob Tow PTS 10 Nov 26, 1934 24 years, 259 days Laurel Garden, Newark, New Jersey, U.S.
70 Loss 48–18–3 (1) Patsy Perroni PTS 10 Oct 22, 1934 24 years, 224 days Laurel Garden, Newark, New Jersey, U.S.
69 Loss 48–17–3 (1) Marty Gallagher TKO 13 (15) Sep 4, 1934 24 years, 176 days Griffith Stadium, Washington, D.C., U.S.
68 Loss 48–16–3 (1) Bob Tow UD 10 Jun 16, 1934 24 years, 96 days Griffith Stadium, Washington, D.C., U.S.
67 Win 48–15–3 (1) Marty Gallagher PTS 10 Jun 15, 1934 24 years, 95 days Griffith Stadium, Washington, D.C., U.S.
66 Win 47–15–3 (1) "Italian" Jack Herman KO 2 (10), 1:55 May 25, 1934 24 years, 74 days Portner's Arena, Alexandria, Virginia, U.S.
65 Win 46–15–3 (1) Battling Bozo DQ 1 (10) Apr 2, 1934 24 years, 21 days Laurel Garden, Newark, New Jersey, U.S.
64 Win 45–15–3 (1) Owen Flynn KO 2 (10) Mar 5, 1934 23 years, 358 days Laurel Garden, Newark, New Jersey, U.S.
63 Win 44–15–3 (1) Larry Johnson KO 7 (10), 1:34 Feb 5, 1934 23 years, 330 days Laurel Garden, Newark, New Jersey, U.S.
62 Loss 43–15–3 (1) Edward "Unknown" Winston PTS 10 Aug 28, 1933 23 years, 169 days Dreamland Park, Newark, New Jersey, U.S.
61 Draw 43–14–3 (1) Don Petrin PTS 8 Aug 14, 1933 23 years, 155 days Park View Arena, Newark, New Jersey, U.S.
60 Win 43–14–2 (1) Don "Red" Barry KO 1 (10), 2:23 Jun 8, 1933 23 years, 88 days Yankee Stadium, New York City, New York, U.S. Not to be confused with Don "Red" Barry
59 Loss 42–14–2 (1) Obie Walker PTS 10 Apr 17, 1933 23 years, 36 days Arena, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, U.S.
58 Win 42–13–2 (1) Roy Clark KO 2 (10) Apr 7, 1933 23 years, 26 days Orange, New Jersey, U.S.
57 Win 41–13–2 (1) Harold Mays PTS 10 Feb 20, 1933 22 years, 345 days Laurel Garden, Newark, New Jersey, U.S.
56 Loss 40–13–2 (1) Jack Gagnon DQ 3 (10) Dec 12, 1932 22 years, 275 days Arena, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, U.S.
55 Win 40–12–2 (1) Natie Brown KO 1 (10), 1:42 Oct 17, 1932 22 years, 219 days Laurel Garden, Newark, New Jersey, U.S.
54 Win 39–12–2 (1) Otis Gardner KO 1 (6) Sep 14, 1932 22 years, 186 days Central Park Arena, Orange, New Jersey, U.S.
53 Win 38–12–2 (1) Charley Boyette TKO 4 (10) Jul 28, 1932 22 years, 138 days Playgrounds Stadium, West New York, New Jersey, U.S.
52 Loss 37–12–2 (1) Ernie Schaaf PTS 10 Jun 7, 1932 22 years, 87 days Dreamland Park, Newark, New Jersey, U.S.
51 Win 37–11–2 (1) Johnny Freeman KO 6 (10) May 2, 1932 22 years, 51 days Laurel Garden, Newark, New Jersey, U.S.
50 Win 36–11–2 (1) Arthur De Kuh TKO 4 (10), 2:04 Apr 11, 1932 22 years, 30 days Laurel Garden, Newark, New Jersey, U.S.
49 Win 35–11–2 (1) Ted Sandwina PTS 10 Mar 14, 1932 22 years, 2 days Laurel Garden, Newark, New Jersey, U.S.
48 Loss 34–11–2 (1) Natie Brown PTS 10 Feb 8, 1932 21 years, 333 days Motor Square Garden, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, U.S.
47 Win 34–10–2 (1) George Panka KO 1 (10), 0:14 Nov 23, 1931 21 years, 256 days Motor Square Garden, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, U.S.
46 Win 33–10–2 (1) Leonard Dixon KO 3 (10) Nov 9, 1931 21 years, 242 days Arena, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, U.S.
45 Win 32–10–2 (1) Mike Sankowitz TKO 3 (10) Oct 12, 1931 21 years, 214 days Arena, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, U.S.
44 Win 31–10–2 (1) Abie Bain TKO 4 (10) Sep 30, 1931 21 years, 202 days Dreamland Park, Newark, New Jersey, U.S.
43 Loss 30–10–2 (1) Johnny Risko PTS 8 Jul 3, 1931 21 years, 113 days Municipal Stadium, Cleveland, Ohio, U.S.
42 Loss 30–9–2 (1) Harold Mays PTS 10 Jun 19, 1931 21 years, 99 days Playgrounds Stadium, West New York, New Jersey, U.S.
41 Win 30–8–2 (1) Meyer K.O. Christner KO 8 (10) Jun 10, 1931 21 years, 90 days Olympia Stadium, Detroit, Michigan, U.S.
40 Loss 29–8–2 (1) Jack Dorval PTS 10 May 22, 1931 21 years, 71 days Olympia Stadium, Detroit, Michigan, U.S.
39 Loss 29–7–2 (1) Paul Cavalier PTS 10 May 15, 1931 21 years, 64 days Madison Square Garden, New York City, New York, U.S.
38 Win 29–6–2 (1) Paul Thurman PTS 3 May 1, 1931 21 years, 50 days Olympia Stadium, Detroit, Michigan, U.S. Third of three fights on this day
37 Win 28–6–2 (1) Frankie Kitts KO 1 (3) May 1, 1931 21 years, 50 days Olympia Stadium, Detroit, Michigan, U.S. Second of three fights on this day
36 Win 27–6–2 (1) Joe Brian KO 1 (3) May 1, 1931 21 years, 50 days Olympia Stadium, Detroit, Michigan, U.S. First of three fights on this day
35 Win 26–6–2 (1) Leo Dillon KO 1 (10) Apr 8, 1931 21 years, 27 days Armory, Hagerstown, Maryland, U.S.
34 Win 25–6–2 (1) Frankie Wine TKO 1 (6) Jan 23, 1931 20 years, 317 days Madison Square Garden, New York City, New York, U.S.
33 Win 24–6–2 (1) Phil Mercurio KO 2 (6), 1:51 Jan 2, 1931 20 years, 296 days Madison Square Garden, New York City, New York, U.S.
32 Win 23–6–2 (1) Armando De Carolis KO 8 (10) Dec 15, 1930 20 years, 278 days Laurel Garden, Newark, New Jersey, U.S.
31 Win 22–6–2 (1) Ted Sandwina KO 2 (10), 0:50 Nov 10, 1930 20 years, 243 days Laurel Garden, Newark, New Jersey, U.S.
30 Win 21–6–2 (1) George LaRocco TKO 2 (10) Oct 17, 1930 20 years, 219 days Llewellyn Hall, Orange, New Jersey, U.S.
29 Win 20–6–2 (1) Jack Marsling KO 1 (10) Sep 19, 1930 20 years, 191 days Llewellyn Hall, Orange, New Jersey, U.S.
28 Win 19–6–2 (1) Frank Montagna KO 3 (10) Sep 10, 1930 20 years, 182 days Dreamland Park, Newark, New Jersey, U.S.
27 Win 18–6–2 (1) Pietro Corri KO 6 (10) Jul 21, 1930 20 years, 131 days Velodrome, Newark, New Jersey, U.S.
26 Win 17–6–2 (1) Will Matthews TKO 1 (10) Jun 25, 1930 20 years, 105 days Dreamland Park, Newark, New Jersey, U.S.
25 Win 16–6–2 (1) Ted Sandwina PTS 10 Jun 2, 1930 20 years, 82 days Velodrome, Newark, New Jersey, U.S.
24 Loss 15–6–2 (1) Bud Gorman PTS 10 Apr 21, 1930 20 years, 40 days Laurel Garden, Newark, New Jersey, U.S.
23 Win 15–5–2 (1) Mike Sullivan KO 2 (10) Apr 7, 1930 20 years, 26 days Laurel Garden, Newark, New Jersey, U.S.
22 Win 14–5–2 (1) Tom Kirby PTS 10 Mar 10, 1930 19 years, 363 days Buckingham Hall, Waterbury, Connecticut, U.S.
21 Loss 13–5–2 (1) Al Friedman PTS 10 Feb 3, 1930 19 years, 328 days Laurel Garden, Newark, New Jersey, U.S.
20 NC 13–4–2 (1) Tom Kirby NC 7 (10) Jan 23, 1930 19 years, 317 days Foot Guard Hall, Hartford, Connecticut, U.S.
19 Loss 13–4–2 Neil Clisby TKO 7 (8) Dec 20, 1929 19 years, 283 days Boston Garden, Boston, Massachusetts, U.S.
18 Win 13–3–2 Cuban Bobby Brown PTS 10 Oct 14, 1929 19 years, 216 days Laurel Garden, Newark, New Jersey, U.S.
17 Win 12–3–2 Al Friedman PTS 10 Aug 13, 1929 19 years, 154 days Velodrome, Newark, New Jersey, U.S.
16 Loss 11–3–2 Harold Mays PTS 10 Jul 26, 1929 19 years, 136 days Lakewood Arena, Waterbury, Connecticut, U.S.
15 Win 11–2–2 George Hoffman PTS 10 Jun 20, 1929 19 years, 100 days Lakewood Arena, Waterbury, Connecticut, U.S.
14 Win 10–2–2 Murray Gitlitz PTS 10 May 20, 1929 19 years, 69 days Laurel Garden, Newark, New Jersey, U.S.
13 Draw 9–2–2 Ad Stone PTS 8 May 10, 1929 19 years, 59 days Llewellyn Boxing Club, Orange, New Jersey, U.S.
12 Win 9–2–1 George Neron PTS 8 Apr 26, 1929 19 years, 45 days Llewellyn Boxing Club, Orange, New Jersey, U.S.
11 Win 8–2–1 Pietro Corri PTS 8 Apr 12, 1929 19 years, 31 days Llewellyn Boxing Club, Orange, New Jersey, U.S.
10 Win 7–2–1 Jack Shaw PTS 8 Mar 7, 1929 18 years, 360 days Llewellyn Boxing Club, Orange, New Jersey, U.S.
9 Draw 6–2–1 George Hoffman PTS 8 Feb 22, 1929 18 years, 347 days Llewellyn Boxing Club, Orange, New Jersey, U.S.
8 Win 6–2 Jack Smith PTS 6 Nov 21, 1928 18 years, 254 days Armory, Newark, New Jersey, U.S.
7 Win 5–2 Nick Fadil TKO 1 (6), 2:46 Nov 5, 1928 18 years, 238 days Laurel Garden, Newark, New Jersey, U.S.
6 Loss 4–2 James Jay Lawless DQ 5 (10) Aug 27, 1928 18 years, 168 days McGuigan's Arena, Harrison, New Jersey, U.S. Galento was Disqualified for butting
5 Win 4–1 Rosaire Boutot PTS 8 Jul 13, 1928 18 years, 123 days Boardwalk Arena, Long Branch, New Jersey, U.S.
4 Win 3–1 Joe Steiney KO 4 (6) Jun 11, 1928 18 years, 91 days Laurel Garden, Newark, New Jersey, U.S.
3 Loss 2–1 Johnny Alberts PTS 8 May 7, 1928 18 years, 56 days Laurel Garden, Newark, New Jersey, U.S.
2 Win 2–0 Andy Schimala KO 4 (8) Apr 16, 1928 18 years, 35 days Laurel Garden, Newark, New Jersey, U.S.
1 Win 1–0 Floyd Shimalla KO 3 (6) Mar 12, 1928 18 years, 0 days Laurel Garden, Newark, New Jersey, U.S.


Galento retired from boxing in 1943, and applied his talents to the world of professional wrestling. He also turned to acting, and was given roles in Wind Across The Everglades (1958), The Best Things in Life Are Free (1956), Guys and Dolls (1955) and On the Waterfront (1954). He retained a kind of "folk hero" status, and was profiled several times, once by W.C. Heinz in TRUE Magazine (AUGUST, 1960; VOL. 41, NO. 279).[49]


Year Title Role Notes
1954 On the Waterfront Truck
1955 Guys and Dolls Spectator at Hot Box Club Uncredited
1956 The Best Things in Life Are Free Fingers
1958 Wind Across The Everglades Beef (final film role)


  1. ^ "Tony Galento, Brawling Heavyweight, Dies". The New York Times. July 23, 1979.
  2. ^ Mee, Bob (2006). The Heavyweights: The Definitive History of the Heavyweight Fighters. Stroud, Gloucestershire: Tempus. pp. 112–114. ISBN 0-7524-3426-8.
  3. ^ Monninger, Joseph (2006). Two Ton: One Fight, One Night: Tony Galento v. Joe Louis. Hanover, New Hampshire: Steerforth Press. pp. 70–71. ISBN 978-1-58642-115-1.
  4. ^ "Sport: Beer Punch". Time. 1938-05-23. ISSN 0040-781X. Retrieved 2023-09-19.
  5. ^ "Notables of Many Fields Hail Columbus in Newark". The New York Times. 1976-10-11. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved 2023-09-19.
  6. ^ Sugar, Bert Randolph (2006). Boxing's Greatest Fighters. Guildford, Connecticut: The Lyons Press. p. 11. ISBN 1-59228-632-1.
  7. ^ "Legend Galento is dead". The Montreal Gazette. Associated Press. 23 July 1979.
  8. ^ Mead, Chris (2010). Joe Louis: Black Champion in White America. Mineola, New York: Dover Publications. p. 165. ISBN 978-0-486-47182-2.
  9. ^ Mee. The Heavyweights. p. 113.
  10. ^ Monninger. Two Ton. p. 78. Yet another version of Galento's contribution to literary criticism reads: "Shakespeare? I ain’t never heard of him. He’s not in no ratings. I suppose he’s one of them foreign heavyweights. They’re all lousy. Sure as hell I'll moider dat bum." See Mullan, Harry (1988). The Book of Boxing Quotations. London: Stanley Paul. p. 19. ISBN 0-09-173722-2.
  11. ^ Monninger. Two Ton. pp. 177–180.
  12. ^ Grasso, John (2014). The Historical Dictionary of Wrestling. Plymouth, United Kingdom: Rowman & Littlefield. p. 110. ISBN 978-0-8108-7925-6.
  13. ^ Gould, Stephen Jay (2011). The Lying Stones of Marrakech: Penultimate Reflections in Natural History (First Harvard ed.). Cambridge, Massachusetts: The Belknap Press of Harvard University Press. p. 201. ISBN 978-0-674-06167-5.
  14. ^ "Tony Galento dies". Press-Republican. Plattsburgh, New York. United Press International. 23 July 1979.
  15. ^ "About People". Press-Republican. Plattsburgh, New York. United Press International. 23 June 1977.
  16. ^ "Quiet funeral for Tony Galento". Press-Republican. Plattsburgh, New York. United Press International. 26 July 1979.
  17. ^ Congressional Record. 96th Congress. House. "Extension of Remarks". July 27, 1979. "Tony Galento: More than Just a Boxer". p. 21156.
  18. ^ Mead. Joe Louis: Black Champion. p. 165.
  19. ^ "Sport: Beer Punch". Time.
  20. ^ Mee. The Heavyweights. p. 112.
  21. ^ Freedman, Lew (2013). Joe Louis: The Life of a Heavyweight. Jefferson, North Carolina: McFarland & Company. p. 168. ISBN 978-0-7864-5907-0.
  22. ^ Mead. Joe Louis: Black Champion. p. 165.
  23. ^ Hudson, David L. Jr. (2012). Boxing in America: An Autopsy. Santa Barbara, California: Praeger. p. 37. ISBN 978-0-313-37972-7.
  24. ^ Rice, Grantland (27 June 1940). "The Sportlight". The Glens Falls Times. Glens Falls, New York. North American Newspaper Alliance.
  25. ^ Mullan. Boxing Quotations. p. 207.
  26. ^ "Nova Calls Galento "Worm," Wants to Meet Either He or Max Baer Again". Plattsburgh Daily Press. Plattsburgh, New York. Associated Press. 5 July 1940.
  27. ^ Lentz, Harris M. III (2003). Biographical Dictionary of Professional Wrestling (2nd ed.). Jefferson, North Carolina: McFarland & Company. p. 118. ISBN 0-7864-1754-4.
  28. ^ Ritter, Lawrence S. (1998). East Side, West Side: Tales of New York Sporting Life, 1910–1960. Kansas City, Missouri: Total Sports. p. 176. ISBN 0-96569496-8.
  29. ^ Freedman. Joe Louis. p. 168.
  30. ^ Stan, Francis E. (9 July 1933). "Boxer, 66 Inches Tall, Scales 230". The Sunday Star. Washington, D. C.
  31. ^ Monninger. Two Ton. p. 3.
  32. ^ "Galento Has Edge". Endicott Daily Bulletin. Endicott, New York. 28 June 1939. The ring announcer, as indicated by film of the fight (accompanied by audio), announced that Galento was 23334 lb and Louis 20034 lb. See Smooth Legends (August 14, 2021). "WATCH: Joe Louis vs Tony Galento HD60 16mm" (video).
  33. ^ Monninger. Two Ton. pp. 1, 70–71.
  34. ^ Mee. The Heavyweights. p. 113.
  35. ^ Mead. Joe Louis: Black Champion. p. 164.
  36. ^ Brietz, Eddie (29 October 1937). "Jockey Gilbert, Fellow Syrian, Backs Petey Sarron... Tony Galento a Glutton Before Kayoing Ettore". The Evening Star. Washington, D. C. Associated Press.
  37. ^ "Tony Training". The Sunday Star. Washington, D. C. 6 April 1941.
  38. ^ Anderson, Dave (1994-03-09). "Sports of The Times; Boxing's Unique Nobleman". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved 2023-09-23.
  39. ^ Dewey, Donald (2012). Ray Arcel: A Boxing Biography. Jefferson, North Carolina: McFarland & Company. pp. 92–95. ISBN 978-0-7864-6968-0. Another version of Dempsey's pugilistic dressing-down of Galento in Stillman's gym concludes with Dempsey knocking Galento to the floor. See Fried, Ronald K. (1991). Corner Men: Great Boxing Trainers. New York: Four Walls Eight Windows. p. 47. ISBN 0-941423-48-4.
  40. ^ McLemore, Henry (23 June 1939). "Which Way Will Tony Fall When Louis Smacks Him?". St. Croix Avis. Christiansted, St. Croix. Virgin Islands. Exchange.
  41. ^ Monninger. Two Ton. pp. 72–75. According to one, possibly fictive, tale, Galento's business acumen may not have been great. When a potential adviser requested a look at his books—meaning his business accounts—Galento seemed puzzled. "Listen, Partner", the boxer allegedly replied, "people come to my place to drink, not read." See "Galento Shaves Down Waist-Line". Ogdensburg Journal. Ogdensburg, New York. Associated Press. 21 July 1938.
  42. ^ "Galento Arrested". Endicott Daily Bulletin. Endicott, New York. 19 June 1946.
  43. ^ Gates, Henry Louis Jr. (1995). Colored People: A Memoir (ebook ed.). New York: Vintage Books. ISBN 978-0-307-76443-0.
  44. ^ McLemore, Henry (March 14, 1939). "Beer Barrel Buddha". LOOK. 3 (6).
  45. ^ Miller, Margery (1945). Joe Louis: American (pre-ISBN First ed.). New York, NY: Current Books, Inc./A.A. Wyn. p. 115.
  46. ^ Fried, Ronald K. (1991). Corner Men (First Edition, 1st Printing ed.). New York, NY: Four Walls Eight Windows. pp. 210–211. ISBN 0-941423-48-4.
  47. ^ Dunphy, Don (1988). Don Dunphy At Ringside. New York: Henry Holt And Company. pp. 289 (includes Index). ISBN 0-8050-0530-7.
  48. ^ Donovan, Joseph (1939). Galento the Great. New York: George Winn. pp. 118 (plus ring record).
  49. ^ Heinz, W.C. (August 1960). "The Curious Career of the Primeval Pugilist". TRUE. 41 (279).


External links[edit]