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Benny Bass

(1904 - 1975)


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Benny Bass, nicknamed "Little Fish," was world featherweight champion and world junior lightweight champion. Despite being 5' 2", Benny possessed extraordinary musculature around his shoulders & biceps. Bass was one of the hardest punchers ever in the featherweight and junior lightweight divisions.

Benny began boxing at the age of 15 and turned pro at 17. On February 10th, 1928, he faced Tony Canzoneri in New York City for the undisputed world title. Even though he lost the 15-round decision, Bass redeemed himself with fistic glory in a display of courage and stamina. During the third round of the encounter Bass somehow got his collarbone broken in five places. This kind of injury is excruciatingly painful making even something as simple as clenching your fists and holding them up agonizing. He somehow not only mustered the will to fight on for another 12 rounds; but from the 10th round on, he mounted a furious rally and almost pulled out of an extremely close 15 round split decision loss. He then successfully challenged Todd Morgan for the junior lightweight title in 1929. He lost the title in 1931 and retired in 1940. Upon retirement, Bass was completely broke. As Benny put it: "Everybody who needed money got it from me.” Bass was inducted into the International Jewish Sports Hall of Fame in 1994 and the International Boxing Hall of Fame in 2002.


Sources: Jewish Sports Net, Wikipedia

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