This Week in Boxing History: January 2-8

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This week in boxing history, PBC revisits four world championship fights—two that ended in knockouts and two that went the distance—and flashes back to a landmark victory for a future heavyweight champion.

January 2, 1957 – Gene Fullmer won the world middleweight title with a 15-round unanimous decision over Sugar Ray Robinson at New York’s Madison Square Garden.

In the first of four meetings between the fighters, Fullmer scored a seventh-round knockdown that left a cut over Robinson’s left eye. Robinson regained the championship in a rematch five months later with a fifth-round KO.

January 2, 1973 – Masao Ohba retained his WBA flyweight title with a 12th-round knockout of Chartchai Chionoi in Tokyo.

Ohba was floored 40 seconds into Round 1 and injured his right ankle while falling to the canvas before gaining three knockdowns of Chionoi, including two in the final round. He died in a car accident just three weeks later at the age of 23.

January 5, 2008 – Paulie Malignaggi retained his IBF light welterweight championship with a unanimous decision over Herman Ngoudjo in Atlantic City.

Malignaggi suffered a cut over his left eye in Round 4, but he used his jab to control Ngoudjo throughout much of the fight in his first title defense.

January 6, 1970 – Australia’s Johnny Famechon defended his WBC featherweight championship with a 14th-round knockout of Fighting Harada in Tokyo.

After defeating Harada in a questionable 15-round decision in July 1969 in his first title defense, Famechon won the rematch in convincing fashion.

January 7, 1955 – Floyd Patterson gained a fifth-round TKO of Willie Troy in a non-title super middleweight bout at New York’s Madison Square Garden.

Fighting three days after his 20th birthday, Patterson won when the referee stopped the bout after Round 5 on advice from the ring doctor. He would go on to become the youngest heavyweight champion in November 1956 by beating Archie Moore.

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