Fistic History: Notes From 1891
Another year in the books in the PPU, so let’s see who the champions are at the end of 1891, which seemed to be a year dominated by middleweights…
HEAVYWEIGHTS, Peter Jackson (23-0-1, 21 KO’s): Jackson’s still the only heavyweight champ in PPU history, but his reign may be showing signs of ending. James J. Corbett held Jackson to a 15-round majority draw in their third championship meeting in November, and Corbett may be line for a fourth shot in 1892.
LIGHT HEAVYWEIGHTS, Luke Keegan (11-11-3, 8 KO’s): Keegan pulled off one of the great upsets in the early history of PPU by knocking out Joe Choynski in July.
MIDDLEWEIGHTS, Bob Fitzsimmons (23-2, 20 KO’s): Promoters are salivating at a possible Fitzsimmons-Jackson dream fight somewhere down the road.
WELTERWEIGHTS, Paddy Duffy (25-3-1, 9 KO’s): Duffy became the first four-time PPU champion in a single weight class when he regained the belt from Charles Kemmic (SD 15) the exact same way he lost the belt one year prior.
LIGHTWEIGHTS, Jack McAuliffe (25-1, 19 KO’s): A year and eight months after being handed his first loss, McAuliffe is back to being the Lightweight kingpin after stopping George Lavigne (KO 6).
FEATHERWEIGHTS, Young Griffo (21-4, 6 KO’s): In 1891, he won three fights by decision; a split decision win over St. John Tommy Kelly, then a majority verdict over Dal Hawkins, and most recently a unanimous win over former champ Cal McCarthy.
BANTAMWEIGHTS, Nunc Wallace (24-3-1, 9 KO’s): Knocked out Tommy Kelly in just two rounds in Detroit in November to become a two-time champ.
FLYWEIGHTS, Clancy Wallace* (20-5-4, 7 KO’s): Also a two-time champ, defeating Raul Cantu* for the crown out in California.
FIGHTER OF THE YEAR: Bob Fitzsimmons (third time he’s won the award)
CONTENDER OF THE YEAR: Jack “Nonpareil” Dempsey (4th time he’s won the award, #1 contender, 1-3 vs. Fitzsimmons)
PROSPECT OF THE YEAR: Fred Morris (#6 contender for the middleweight crown)
ROOKIE OF THE YEAR: Charles McCoy (7-0 in 1891 as a middleweight)