Jake LaMotta vs Sugar Ray VI “You Never Got me Down, Ray”- February 14, 1951
Jake LaMotta and Sugar Ray Robinson fought for the sixth and last time at Chicago Stadium on February 14, 1951. Robinson took the middle weight title from LaMotta, stopping him by TKO in the 13th round.
Dubbed the “Boxing Version of the Saint Valentine’s Day Massacre,” the fight, was depicted in Martin Scorsese’s 1980 film “Raging Bull.” In the movie, when the fight is being stopped in the 13th round, LaMotta (portrayed in an Oscar winning performance by Robert DeNiro), beaten to a bloody pulp, repeatedly tells Robinson (Ray Barnes) “You never got me down, Ray.”
Here’s how Red Smith described it:
In the third minute of the 13th round Ray Robinson hit Jake LaMotta for-what was it? – the thousandth time? The five thousandth? Jake was hung on the ropes like a picture on the wall, like an old, wrinkled suit in the attic closet. Now he came off the hook, sagged forward, bent double at the waist. He embraced Robinson about the drawers and the referee, Frank Sikora, pushed in between them and motioned to Robinson to desist. The greatest fist fighter in the world was middleweight champion of the world, and one of the toughest had suffered the first believable knockout of his life.
Jake LaMotta was slugged, tortured, flayed, bloodied and bludgeoned tonight by a better fighter. He was stripped of his title and nearly detached from his intellect as well. Yet when it was over he was on his feet and had not left his feet. After 96 professional fights, the lovable character from the Bronx still can say he has never been knocked down.
The previous five fights between Robinson and LaMotta took place between 1942 and 1945. None of these bouts was a title fight. LaMotta only beat Robinson once. That was on February 5, 1942 at Olympia Stadium in Detroit, when LaMotta won a unanimous decision. Incredibly, they fought again exactly three weeks later in the same place. This time, LaMotta, who outweighed Robinson by 15 pounds, floored him for an eight count in the seventh round, but Robinson got up and held on to win the decision.
When they met for the fifth time, at Comiskey Park in Chicago on September 26, 1945, Robinson won a split decision that was booed by the crowd.
The Real Fight
Jake LaMotta vs Sugar Ray VI “You Never Got me Down Ray”- February 14, 1951
Jake LaMotta and Sugar Ray Robinson fought for the sixth and last time at Chicago Stadium on February 14, 1951. Robinson successfully defended his middle weight title, stopping LaMotta by TKO in the 13th round.
Dubbed by some fight fans as the “Saint Valentines Day Massacred,”