Philly Boxing History

SEPTEMBER 26, 1979




On this day in 1979, South Philly's Joltin' Jeff Chandler won the brand new USBA bantamweight championship with a resounding knockout of Baby Kid Chocolate (a.k.a. Ronnie Walker) of North Philly at the 69yh Street Forum in Upper Darby.

Chandler started slowly but eventually established his superiority of his rival. He began landing his heavy blows after a couple of rounds and really started making headway in the middle of the fight. As Chocolate chugged forward pressing the action, Chandler out-worked him with his accurate attack. As the punches rained, Chocolate began to wear down and held more and more. By round eight, Chandler seemed to have his opponent on the brink of a stoppage. But with his back against the ropes for much of the period, Chocolate showed his grit by hanging in there.

In the ninth, Chandler moved in for the kill and got it with a devastating three punch combination. His initial left set Chocolate up. The quick, hard left hook that followed was probably all the Chandler needed, but just to ice it, he drilled a right hand home that put Chocolate down and out. Referee Bob Polis counted ten and Chocolate remained out for several minutes.

The impressive victory raised Chandler's record to 18-0-1 (6 KOs) and really was the beginning of his charge toward the world bantamweight championship that he won about one year later. Chocolate dropped to 18-3 with 8 KOs. It was his third straight loss and basically signaled the end of his career. Chocolate would win just one of five more bouts scattered over his last four years in the ring. He was a good fighter and a solid prospect, but unfortunate enough to come up at a time when Chandler ruled the bantamweights.

  1930 - Al Ettore W8 Bob Shilling at Philadelphia
  1947 - Laverne Roach W10 Billy Arnold at St. Nicholas Arena in New York
  1950 - Joey Giardello KO1 Ted DiGiammo at Wilkes-Barre, PA
  1978 - Maurice Hope KO5 Alfonso Hayman at Wembley Pool in London
  1979 - Richie Bennett KO2 Archie Andrews at the Forum in Upper Darby
  1981 - Mathew Saad Muhammad TKO11 Jerry Martin at the Playboy Hotel & Casino in AC
  1981 - Jimmy Young W10 Tom Fisher at Caesars Palace in Las Vegas
  1981 - Curtis Parker KO7 Lancelot Innis at the Golden Nugget in Atlantic City