boxing, Comanche, Florida, Harry Wills, history, Jack Dempsey, Jack Kearns, Jacksonville, Jerry Luvadis, Logan, Luis Firpo, Miami, New York, Palm Beach, Sports, Tex Rickard, Tommy Gibbons, West Virginia
From the Logan Banner of Logan, WV, comes this story dated January 4, 1924 about boxing champion Jack Dempsey:
Dempsey Goes South For Early Training
Jack Dempsey, heavyweight champion of the world, who used to call Logan home, boarded a ship at New York Wednesday bound for Florida, where he will indulge in light training this winter, preparing for a battle in defense of his title in the spring. His opponent will most likely be Tommy Gibbons, the only battler to stay the limit with him since he became champion. Gibbons stepped fifteen rounds with Dempsey at Shelby, Montana, July 4, 1923, and is itching for another crack at the champion.
Dempsey’s first port of call will be Jacksonville, where the steamer Comanche is to end its voyage. Just what will happen after that is a matter of vagrant chance. It is probable that the champion will remain in Jacksonville for several days to await the pleasure of Jerry Luvadis his trainer, and Jack Kearns, his man of business. Once complete, the party will head south with Palm Beach and Miami in the immediate foreground.
After that it may be a case of join the navy and see the world from a port hole. The champion may go in Cuba for a quick look.
Meantime, he will indulge in light exercise under the direction of Kearns and his trainer in a conference with Tex Rickard just before sailing. Dempsey expressed a desire to frolic with three opponents during the coming outdoor session. The other two are Luis Firpo and Hary Wills.
Rickard is alleged to have said that he was none too keen on the Gibbons enterprise but indicated a willingness to receive customers at the gate with dignity and politeness, in the event that a so-called public demand for the bout could be created. Rickard has no definite objection to Gibbons as an attraction, the promoter merely having other plans in mind.
He has been quoted as saying that two championship starts will be sufficient for Dempsey next summer. One of them, of a certainty, will be against Luis Firpo. The latter is a sure starter against Dempsey in spite of the fact that everyone knows he will fail to finish.