James J. Braddock
James J. Braddock, Cinderella man, was a Irish-American boxer during the Great Depression. He became the world heavy weight champion after his 1935 victory against Max Baer. He held that title till 1937 when he lost against Joe Louis. He retired in 1938, and was inducted into the international boxing hall of fame in 2001.
Backstory and Context
Only months after this fight the stock market crashed and James had lost everything; like many others had. James would continue to fight having 22 fights, only winning 6 of them, during the great depression. After his 22nd fight he was kicked out of competitive boxing leaving him with no job and having to fight for shifts on the docks.
In 1934 James had gotten a chance to fight again after a fighter cancelled a fight with John "corn" Griffin. James was given only a few days notice for this fight. After winning the fight, with a 3rd round K.O., James was given his status of a competitive boxer back and was able to fight again. He had many fights and by 1935 James had won the nations heart back. He was nicknamed Cinderella Man for his fairy tale like comeback.
After his win against Art Lasky, a heavyweight contender, James was considered the new heavyweight contender and was set to fight the current heavyweight champion, Max Baer. On June 13, 1935 Braddock and Baer were set to fight and with 10-1 odds James J.Braddock won after 15 rounds and a unanimous decision. This win earned him the World Heavyweight Champion title.
In 1937 James was put up against Joe Louis. James lost due to being on an arthritis medication that numbed his left arm making him unable to raise his arm above his head. Joe Gould, James' manager, struck a deal with Louis that would give James 10% gross of Louis earnings for the next 10 years. This added up to $150,000 (2 million today.) In his career he had 85 fights and 51 victories.
Songalia, Ryan. ‘CINDERELLA MAN’ JAMES BRADDOCK GETS STATUE TREATMENT IN HOMETOWN. July 14, 2018. Accessed August 27, 2018. https://www.ringtv.com/539280-cinderella-man-james-braddock-gets-statue-treatment-in-hometown/.
James J. Braddock. . Accessed August 27, 2018. https://www.findagrave.com/memorial/1805/james-j.-braddock.