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10. Marvin Hart W20 Jack Johnson

Woodward’s Pavilion, San Francisco. California, March 28, 1905.

Johnson, with a burgeoning status as the ‘uncrowned’ champion, fighting out of the shackles of Jim Crow racism may or may not have carried Hart over the 20 round distance in an effort to seem a plausibly less threatening challenger to whomever would succeed the recently retired Jim Jeffries.

What seems more than likely from a perusal of contemporary reports is that the ‘Galveston Giant’ ought to have cruised to a reasonably comprehensive victory on account of his self contained technical mastery of the Kentucky contender who would soon become King.

To quote an envoy from the Washington Post:

“The sympathies of the large crowd were openly with Hart, who was at the short end in the betting, and every lead he made at Johnson, whether he landed or not, was greeted with cheers.”

It would not appear to take a genius to figure out the essential logic behind Marvin getting his hand raised on the night but Johnson would have his day in the sun, nonetheless.

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