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the boston belt

Kid Chocolate

One of the most popular fighters in New York from the late 1920s to the late 1930s, Kid Chocolate dazzled fans with his speed and two-handed punching ability. Chocolate, a Cuban whose birth name was EligioSardinias-Montalbo, first started fighting as a newspaper boy in Havana, defending his sales turf. After he won an amateur boxing tournament sponsored by the newspaper La Noche, Chocolate came under the guidance of the newspaper's sports editor, Luis Gutierrez. Neither Gutierrez nor Chocolate knew a lot about boxing at that point and part of Chocolate's training was to watch films of famous fights.

http://www.ibhof.com/chocolate.htm

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kid_Chocolate

http://coxscorner.tripod.com/chocolate.html

http://www.ringsidereport.com/Smith292005.htm

http://www.time.com/time/magazine/article/0,9171,753697,00.html?promoid=googlep

http://experts.about.com/e/k/ki/Kid_Chocolate.htm

http://www.boxrec.com/boxer_display.php?boxer_id=009006

Kid Chocolate

One of the most popular fighters in New York from the late 1920s to the late 1930s, Kid Chocolate dazzled fans with his speed and two-handed punching ability. Chocolate, a Cuban whose birth name was EligioSardinias-Montalbo, first started fighting as a newspaper boy in Havana, defending his sales turf. After he won an amateur boxing tournament sponsored by the newspaper La Noche, Chocolate came under the guidance of the newspaper's sports editor, Luis Gutierrez. Neither Gutierrez nor Chocolate knew a lot about boxing at that point and part of Chocolate's training was to watch films of famous fights.

Chocolate never lost a fight as an amateur and racked up 21 knockouts in 21 bouts as a pro before taking on New York in 1928 at the age of eighteen. Chocolate quickly made a name for himself, and his fights moved from small clubs to Madison Square Garden. By 1929, he was ranked the top featherweight contender in the annual ratings by The Ring. In 1930, Chocolate faced his stiffest challenge when he met Hall of Famer Jackie ("Kid") Berg at the Polo Grounds with 40,000 fans watching. Berg outweighed Chocolate by almost ten pounds. Chocolate's best round of the fight was the third, when he pounded Berg with jarring uppercuts to the head. As the fight went on, however, Berg's relentless attack tired Chocolate. Berg won a fairly close decision, handing Chocolate the first defeat of his career.

Later that same year, Chocolate lost decisions to Fidel LaBarba and featherweight champion Battling Battalino. Ringside observers said Chocolate appeared slightly listless. Chocolate was back in top form by July of 1931, when he won his first title with a technical knockout over junior lightweight champion Benny Bass. The same year, Chocolate attempted to add the lightweight title to his holdings, but fell victim to the blistering attack of champion Tony Canzoneri, who won by decision.


7th August 1930

A battered little bundle of ebony fighting machinery sat huddled in his corner at the Polo Grounds last night after ten of the most furious rounds of slam-bang boxing New York has witnessed in many a moon. As  Joe Humphries walked toward him., white official slips in hand. Kid  Chocolate leapt up in anticipation of being proclaimed  the winner, only to stumble back and fall into a sobbing heap in his corner as Humphries suddenly checked himself, turned and lifted the hand of  Jackie (Kid) Berg in token of triumph.

In those few dramatic moments pulse stirring to a crowd of 25,000 that had been thrilled by a" sensational battle of little fellows, the winning streak that Kid Chocolate appeared to have kept intact was brought to a. sudden  end, snapped after two years of unbroken victory by the lean little English whirlwind from Whitechapel.

Entirely oh the strength of his tireless aggressiveness Berg won by a two to one vote of the officials. The British lightweight received the verdict of Referee Patsy Haley. grey-haired little veteran. and one of the Judges, Joe Agnello. The vote of Charles F Mathison. the second judge, went to the Cuban featherweight.

So close was the battle and so partisan  the sympathies of the crowd that the decision, plus the announcer's  uncertainty, provoked a big demonstration of disapproval. Chocolate, led tearfully  from the ring, received an ovationthat drowned out the cheers for Berg. So heated was the scene that impromptu  fights broke out around the ringside and in the stands of the National league ball park. It was fully five minutes before order was restored by the police.

Among the ringside experts, a sharp division of opinion existed although  a slight majority appeared to regard the decision as fair. On the Associated Press  score-sheet  Chocolate was given six rounds and Berg four but the margin in several was so close  that there was plenty of ground for a wide range of opinion. Chocolate seemed to have the edge in the first three rounds as well as the 6th. 7th and 8th . Berg held margins in the 4th,5th,9th and 10th.

Chocolate landed the cleaner more effective blows and had Berg Somewhat groggy in the 3rd, the most exciting of the entire fight.The flashing ebony was  also the faster, better boxer whenever He could keep away from the crowding Englishman . Berg, however was unceasingly the aggressor, his punching was seldom damaging but they were more persistent and landed oftener. This forcing, plus the fact that Berg unquestionably  made the stronger finish apparently swung the decision in his favor.

Berg, with better than a 9- pound pull in the weights at 132- used this to good advantage as he continually crowded, mauled and harassed the Cuban negro. Speared and often baffled by his rival's speed afoot, occasionally left pawing the vacant air as the kid slid out of reach. Berg nevertheless  kept tip a steady drumfire that weakened- the ebony flash. Except for a spurt or two Chocolate was hardly able to lift his hands to punch in the last two rounds.

Chocolate, meeting his first defeat in two years of professional fighting  lost little prestige, his backers undoubtedly will clamor for a return bout. The kid stepped out of his natural class, as a featherweight, to beat the present lightweight king, Al Singer, a year ago but he was unable to repeat the stunt last night. The "gate' was estimated at $160, 000. approximately the same as that for the Singer -Mandell lightweight title bout recently at the Yankee Stadium.