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Sunday, October 30, 2011

1906-10-30 Abe Attell W-PTS20 Harry Baker [Naud Junction Pavilion, Los Angeles, CA, USA]

1906-10-31 Los Angeles Daily Times (Los Angeles, CA) (page 6)
Referee Robinson's Ruling Unpopular and Draw Would Have Suited the Crowd Better But Baker Was Not Robbed--Great Defense Fight.
If Attell had fought as Baker did, there would have been no fight, for both would have been busy covering up and defending themselves. Baker would jab and jump away and cover up. Attell was willing at all times to fight or box, and did the best he could to make Baker fight. There were no fouls that I could see. At times when Attell led for the stomach, Baker would jump up, presumedly to receive the blow foul. It would have been easy for me to have given a popular decision by calling it a draw and so have saved myself from the enmity of a part of the crowd, but I was there to do my duty, and I did it as I saw it, regardless of what others had to say or thought.--Referee Eddie Robinson.
Abe Attell is still featherweight champion of the world. He retained the title by receiving the decision over Harry Baker at the end of twenty rounds of the fastest fighting ever seen here, before the Pacific Athletic Club, last night.

The decision was unpopular to many persons in the large crowd present. Referee Eddie Robinson would have pleased the spectators as a whole much better had he declared the fight a draw.

Harry Baker collapsed when he heard the decision and fell crying into the arms of his two brothers. The decision did more to damage him than all the blows Attell rained on him. After the fight he was roundly cheered and given the commiseration of many friends.

To many, Robinson was the most unpopular man in the house, and cries of "Lynch him!" resounded from all over the house, and many vile epithets were hurled at him.


Baker put up a game fight and his defeat is no disgrace. He was beaten by the champion largely because he was champion.

Attell never went against such a hard man to hit as Baker. The latter appeared all arms and hands, and wherever Attell swung, hooked or jabbed there was a glove or elbow to meet it. And from that cycle of defense often darted a gloved hand, hooking Attell in the nose or jaw.

But with his defense and left jab, Baker's chief virtues are told. His right cut little figure in the contest, while the jabs did not hurt Attell. At no time in the fight did Baker have a chance to put Attell out, while on two or three occasions, had Baker's defense been vulnerable at any point, Attell might have turned the trick.

The decision went to the champion, and if a decision needs must have been made, it was the only way it could have gone. A draw would have pleased better, but there are none who can say, all things considered, that Baker was robbed. The shade was with Attell.


It was a battle between a wasp and a hornet and both stung and stung, yet missed many attacks. The defense was so good that it became monotonous, the crowd wanted heavier battle. Jabs, upper-cuts, swings, hooks--all largely went astray or impacted against glove, arm or shoulders. The story of the rounds is worthless, for it was a repetition of leads and counters with blocks and ducks--and yet no damage done. It was not a popular fight to those who sighed for gore, but it was a marvelous exhibition of self-defense. At the latter game Baker was the best. Even in footwork he was not far behind the shifty Attell. But at the infighting and the rough going Abe had the better of it.

In every rally Attell was the aggressor, but Baker usually led with his left. Attell always looked for an opening, but it never came. Even when he drove Baker furiously to the ropes, the marvelous defense of the latter did not allow an opening of serious consequence and Harry fought back furiously.

There were four terrific rallies that brought the crowd to its feet. In each of them Abe backed Baker into a corner and the milling was something furious. Twice Referee Robinson and the seconds had to pull the men apart because they had not heard the bell and continued fighting. In the last round a final rally was made and the men stood on pretty even terms although Baker was slowly retreating.


Baker scored the only knockdown, and it was a doubtful one at that. He caught Attell on the left shoulder as the latter was going away, and Abe went back on the floor, partly slipping. Once Attell staggered Baker with a right swing to the jaw, but Harry covered up and avoided further punishment at the time.

Too much praise cannot be given Baker for the wonderful defense he put up. He met the greatest boxer in the profession, and at times he made him look cheap. The styles of the two men are decidedly different. Baker flings his arms about like a flail and dances in a manner disconcerting to his opponent. He covers up splendidly, and it was impossible for Attell to hit him a fair blow in that condition. Attell, on the other hand, stands out with his guard down, depending on footwork, ducking, and blocking when in close for a defense.

In the early rounds baker actually made Attell appear amateurish by poking out a series of long left leads into his face, and then covering perfectly on Abe's return. But his aggressiveness soon wore away to a large extent, while Attell forced the fighting. Baker was backing away most of the time, but shot out that left jab until Abe's nose was very sore and his mouth bleeding. Many times Attell's head went back from a long jab, and he was unable to reach the elusive Baker.

Attell's generalship was decidedly the better. He was confident and at times appeared almost careless, but there was method in it. He kidded Baker at times, and in the ninth, after Baker had claimed a foul, he called Harry a "cry baby." He even turned to those at the ringside and asked them, "Did you ever see a cry baby?" but Baker was prepared for such tactics and came back with a "kid" when the round closed.


Attell got in bad at the start, because the crowd did not know what was going on in the ring while the principals were being weighed. Attell failed to tip the beam, but Baker raised it, with his ring paraphernalia on. Attell at once protested, and Baker weighed with his shoes off, just tipping the beam. Attell demanded that Baker weigh 122 pounds with his fighting clothes on, but Manager McCarey declared that it was his decision that Baker could weigh in stripped, if necessary, so that he was under the notch that way.

Attell argued that he had the right to insist that Baker weigh even with his gloves on, but finally gave in, provided that both men give their true weight, so that the figures could be known. Attell weighed just 120½, while Baker weighed 122½, each with his ring costume on. This fact was not announced to the crowd, for Manager McCarey, fearing a possible disturbance, instructed Cook to say that both men were under weight.

As the battle progressed the crowd repeatedly demanded that Baker he given the decision on a foul. Attell did hit a few taps below the belt, but on practically every occasion Baker jumped up, thus diverting the blow; or the glove glanced downward from Baker's elbows. Baker kicked strenuously, and looked to be distressed by the blows, but Robinson would not allow the claim, much to the disgust of partisans of Baker. None of the blows did any damage. Once Baker was guilty of holding Attell's gloved hand, and was warned, but did not repeat the offense.


There is little to say in telling the story of the fight. Baker would jab and cover; then Attell would get in close and try for an opening at the infighting. Baker scored first. He jabbed Attell twice before the latter had time to think of what was coming. Then he feinted for an opening, at the same time keeping well covered. Attell got a left to the face, but Baker came back with his jabs, and then Abe sent his right across lightly.

In the second round Baker started again with a left to the nose, and kept up his jabbing. Both landed heavily in an exchange, but the main force of the blows was blocked. Then Baker sent Attell to the floor in a neutral corner by a left to the shoulder, but Abe was up like a flash and laughed.

The fierce mix-ups began in the third round and both tried hard to land, but could do little damage. baker began jabbing again, but Attell protected his jaws and his hands, allowed Baker to jab him repeatedly, and when close waded in with fierce rights and lefts, some of which got past Baker's guard. In the fifth Attell began a slam-bang process of lefts in the ribs and right uppercuts to the face in the clinches. It was here that the first claim of foul occurred.

During the next few rounds Baker made a better showing, if anything, than Attell, but the veteran was not distressed and calmly bided his time.


The eleventh round showed the first decided advantage, when Attell landed the hardest blow of the fight to Baker's jaw and followed it with a second. Baker came back with a hard right to the side of the head. Attell bored in hard, and tried to rattle Baker by nodding his head in a way to make it appear as though Baker were hardly hurt.

The next round also was Attell's and Baker showed signs of being tired and did not come so strong with his left jabs. Attell landed a left to the eye and staggered Baker with a right to the jaw. The first big rally occurred in this round and the crowd went wild. Attell forced the fighting but Baker came back hard.

In the fifteenth round there was more heavy fighting and Attell drove Baker about the ring and into the latter's corner. Robinson had to separate them at the bell. In the sixteenth Attell started another rally, but the bell cut it short. Baker appeared much stronger, though he was not as fresh as Attell. In the eighteenth and nineteenth rounds there were more rallies, the one in the nineteenth being the fiercest of the fight. It was a terrible mix-up and the blows fell so fast that there was absolutely no chance to record them. Again Robinson had to separate the men, many blows being landed after the bell tapped.

The twentieth saw both men attempting a great finish, but for half the round the defense was so grand that it was impossible to get in close. Finally Attell started it going again in a neutral corner and they exchanged the hardest series of blows of the battle. Baker landed two to the face and one to the body that counted, while Attell landed many to the body with telling effect, and one or two to the head.

Robinson lifted Attell's hand, and pandemonium broke loose.

Kid Solomon wants to fight the winner and was given a good reception when he appeared in the ring with his challenge.


After a terrific battle, during which the crowd was kept on its feet cheering the contestants every minute of the time, Kid Dalton landed a right swing under Frank Sheek's heart in the fifth round of what was to have been a ten-round semi-wind-up, and then literally battered the game easterner to the mat. It was youth and strength against age and a cool, calculating head; and the former won.

For four rounds Sheek seemed to play with Dalton and it looked as though he was a sure winner, but it proved to be a flash out of the pan and stamina won. Dalton took all the roughing Sheek could hand out, while the latter gradually wore down. The body blow caught him in a weakened condition and he could fight no more. Fearing a trick, Dalton's seconds instructed the latter to rush in and finish the job, thus meting out needless punishment to Sheek. Never has such terrible infighting been indulged in and Sheek always came out best, but he finally collapsed.

This is Sheek's first battle in two years and a half, and the veteran made an excellent showing. After the fight Dalton's two brothers rushed into the ring and kissed him effusively on the cheek. Caesar Dalton and Billy Conroy challenged the winner.


Jack Brown had no difficulty in beating Mike Haney in the first round of what was to have been a six-round go, as the first preliminary. Toward the end of the round Brown handed Haney a right swing on the jaw as the latter came on in a rush, and Mike went down on his face and rolled over on his back. As Robinson told off the seconds Haney rose to one knee, but Mike's head refused to clear and the count of ten found him unable to get to his feet. It was a good fight while it lasted, but Haney was rather slow in carrying the punch and Brown usually beat him to it. Both landed some good blows, but Brown got there first. Kid McClelland challenged the winner.

1906-10-31 Los Angeles Herald (Los Angeles, CA) (pages 5, 8)
Judgment of Referee Robinson Creates Some Dissatisfaction Although Abe Had Good Shade on Opponent--Both End with Knockout


Amid a wild outburst of protest Abe Attell left the ring at Naud Junction pavilion last night, declared a winner over Harry Baker, after one of the cleanest decisions ever rendered at the local arena. Baker fought a wonderfully clever battle, but Attell's readiness to mix at all times and the runaway tactics of Baker were somewhat overlooked in sympathy for the short end boy, who surprised his most ardent friends by the clever exhibition which he gave last night.

That Baker puzzled his crafty opponent is beyond question, but a close study of the battle reveals that Attell's class showed strongly in the closing rounds when he outgeneraled the lightning youngster before him. Attell met a dangerous ringster last night and one that called for every trick and turn which the wonderful ability of Attell entails.

Many thought that a draw decision should have been rendered and harshly criticized Robinson for his judgment. The latter probably realized that a decision in favor of Attell would raise an outcry, and was in a position to make himself strong with no small number of those who witnessed the tie. That he rendered the decision which he did in the face of certain opposition should stamp him at least with the mark of courageous convictions.

Baker with his wonderful left reached Attell's face with clever persistency, and in the second round sent Abe to the floor with a stiff right, which landed flush on the chin. That knockdown blow sent Baker adherents wild with delight and predictions of a victory, for Harry followed close thereon.

What age Baker might have gained in the opening rounds was more than bridged by Attell after the tenth, when Harry covered constantly as Attell went after him.

That Baker is the cleverest blocker ever seen in a local ring goes without a question after last night's battle, but the fact that Attell landed the most blows by a good shade and was willing and anxious at all times to mix while Harry showed a strong inclination to block during a major portion of practically every one of the closing rounds appeared to warrant a strong shade decision in favor of Attell.

As a whirlwind battle the exhibition cannot be classed with either the Attell-Neil contest or the Baker-Neil battle. Both men were superlatively clever and they left the ring without a scratch.

Baker's poise last night was one of the prettiest spectacles witnessed hereabouts in many a day. In and out like a flash blocking with marvelous surety the rising youngster proved that he must be strongly reckoned with in the days to come.

Probably a lack or confidence lost for Baker last night, as after staying with Attell for ten fast rounds he slowed perceptibly and evidenced a disposition to let Abe do the forcing. Had he opened in slashing fashion there is no telling what might have happened as the Attell boy did not appear to weaken him to a perceptible extent.

There is a strong suspicion that Attell was not the same Attell who fought Frankie Neil on the memorable Fourth of July afternoon. Abe entered the ring appearing drawn and although he proved equally as strong as Baker did not exhibit the strength which marked his former battle.

Attell went viciously for Baker just before the gong sounded on several rounds and Referee Robinson was assisted by Baker's seconds in pulling the men apart as they lashed viciously at one another heedless of the bell.

Both preliminaries ended before the limit. Jack Browne required less than three minutes to knock out young Haney, as shortly before the gong sounded on the first round he caught the latter a rousing wallop in the kidneys and followed it with a right to the jaw, which dropped Haney for the count.

Kid Dalton climbed another rung on the ladder when he sent Frank Sheek down and out in the fifth round of their scheduled ten period match. Dalton again proved that he possesses a powerful punch, and nailed Sheek after that worthy had threatened to prove an obstacle. Sheek appeared a husky boxer, with a gorilla length of arm.

Several times Sheek staggered Dalton with stiff punches to the face, and had secured a good lead as the gong sounded for the fifth. At the opening Dalton put Sheek down with a left to the face, though the latter was on his feet in an instant. Sheek put two lefts to the face, but his steam was gone, and Dalton went after him in a hurry. The Italian landed a terrific right to the kidneys and Sheek doubled in pain. Dalton followed his advantage and a moment later had Sheek down for the count.

Following the preliminary affairs the crowd waited impatiently for the coming of Attell and Baker. Abe was first in the ring and Baker came shortly after.

Some trouble resulted at the weighing in, as Baker, minus his shoes, was half a pound over the limit. Attell weighed but one hundred and twenty pounds and a half and entered some objection.

As the men were not held to scale with their fighting togs on both were declared under weight.

The opening round proved that a fast exhibition was in order. Both men were clever and Baker showed exceptionally speedy with gloves and feet. In the second Baker's right caught Attell on the chin, sending him to the floor.

Furious fighting occurred in the tenth when Baker put a hard left to Attell's stomach, Abe coming back with a rush, and in the mixup both men went through the ropes as the gong sounded.

From the tenth on Attell appeared to open and went after Baker at all stages of the game. Spectators were treated to something extra when after several rounds both men tore at each other, not realizing that the gong had sounded.

Baker displayed keen judgment in avoiding Attell's leads, though Abe landed more often than did Harry. Robinson was constantly obliged to be on the watch for blows appearing dangerously foul. Attell sent in more than one low lead, though Baker was in the main responsible, as he contracted a jumping back trick of meeting Attell's blows.

Each round from the tenth on was practically a repetition, Attell forcing the battle and landing a greater number of leads, while Baker pecked away and was content to cover during a major portion of the time.



Round One

Attell leads with a left to the face and men come to a clinch, both using their lefts to the body. Baker dances away and comes in with a hard left to Attell's stomach. As they clinch Attell fights, using right and left and lands with a right uppercut in the break away. Attell misses a left swing and goes to a clinch, Baker uppercutting at the gong.

Round Two

They rushed to a clinch, Baker blocking a right swing to the head. An exchange of lefts to the face occurs and Baker blocks prettily, getting away from Attell. Baker sends in a left and closes, Attell fighting in the clinch. Baker lands a left to the face and follows it with two lefts to the face. Baker staggers Attell with right to the jaw. Attell misses a left swing and slips to the floor. Baker shoots in a left to the face.

Round Three

Baker lands a hard right to the jaw and shoots a left to the stomach. Baker slips to the canvas. Attell lands two lefts to the jaw. Baker puts in a left and they go to a clinch. Attell fights furiously, using right and left.

Round Four

The men meet In the middle of the ring and fiddle for an opening. Baker lands a light left on Attell's face, but Abe comes back with a left to the stomach and face. Attell goes in, rushing Baker, and they clinch. Attell gets in a right uppercut to the stomach, and they break and clinch again. Baker shoots in a left to the stomach, but Attell lands a left to the head. Baker dances around, but lands his right on Attell's head and body. Baker puts in left to the face and gets away. Baker shoots right and left to the body and Attell closes in, fighting furiously at the tap of the gong.

Round Five

Attell opens with a left to the face and goes to a clinch, swinging his left to the stomach. Attell jabs two light lefts to the face and swings a low left to the stomach. Baker goes back and Attell gets in another left to the stomach. The men break, clinch, break and clinch again and in the clinch Attell lands right hook on to the jaw. Baker puts in a left to the face and dances away. As they come to a clinch Baker misses a left uppercut.

Round Six

Attell lands a left to the stomach and gets away. Attell puts in two hard lefts to the stomach and Baker lands a hard right swing to the jaw. Baker puts a left to the face and goes into a clinch. As they mix Referee Robinson warns Baker about hitting low. Attell lands a right to the face after a clinch.

Round Seven

Attell misses a left swing to the face and Baker puts a left jab to the face. Baker blocks a right and left swing and they go to a clinch, Attell putting a left to the stomach. They exchange lefts to the face as they come into a clinch. Baker puts in a left to the face and Attell lands a left to the face in the break. Attell lands a light left to the face.

Round Eight

Baker puts in a left as they go into a clinch. Attell lands a left to the side of the head and goes into another clinch. Attell uppercuts furiously. After a break and as they come to close quarters, Baker gets in a left to the face and Attell a right to the stomach. As the clinch is broken Baker gets in a right uppercut. An exchange of lefts to the face occurs and they go into a clinch in a neutral corner, staying so until the gong taps.

Round Nine

The men clinch, break and feint to a clinch again. Baker dances away and Attell misses a right uppercut as they come back to close quarters. Attell puts a right uppercut to the head and Baker blocks cleverly. Baker misses a right uppercut and they exchange lefts to the face. Attell puts a hard, low right to the stomach and they fight close as the gong sounds.

Round Ten

Attell lands a left to the body and face and switches his arm down, getting a left to the stomach. Baker blocks well, but Attell gets in a left as they come together. As they break Attell lands a left to the face and stomach and Baker shoots a left and right to the face. As they come to a clinch Baker again lands a left and right to the face. Attell fights furiously in the clinch, rushing Baker through the ropes and they mix.

Round Eleven

Baker blocks a left to the face but Attell lands right on stomach. Attell lands two terrific rights in succession on the side of Baker's head, but Baker comes back with a hard right to the face. Baker blocks left uppercut, but Attell gets a right on the stomach. Attell lands a left to the face, but receives a right from Baker. After the gong sounds an exchange of lefts is made to the face.

Round Twelve

Attell lands a hard right to the head and on the kidneys. Baker gets away, but Attell follows him and again lands a right to the head. Baker puts in a left hook to the jaw and Attell lands a hard left to the stomach. Attell puts a right to the head at a break and Baker a left to the face and they come into a clinch. Attell shoots a left to the stomach and they are clinched at the gong.

Round Thirteen

Attell lands a left and they clinch. Baker rushes to a clinch and Attell lands a left Jab to the jaw. Baker puts in a light left and they come to a clinch. Baker gets in two left jabs to the face and Attell rushes, landing a left. Baker shoots in a left jab at the gong.

Round Fourteen

The men spar in the center of the ring and go to a clinch, Attell getting in a right to the face. Both miss left jabs and Attell lands a low left to the stomach. Attell puts a left hook to Baker's jaw. Attell lands a right to the jaw. As they come to a clinch Attell punishes Baker with short range blows to the stomach.

Round Fifteen

Attell opens with a left jab to the face which is returned by Baker. Attell lands a hard left to the stomach and enters into a dispute with Robinson. Attell gets in a light left to the nose and Baker shoots a hard left to the head. Attell lands a terrific left to the head and left in a clinch. They exchange lefts and both fight furiously after the gong sounds.

Round Sixteen

The men spar for a few seconds and Attell lands two lefts to the head and goes into a clinch. At the breakaway Attell lands a hard left to the jaw and one to the stomach. Attell misses a right hook and gets in a left to the face. Baker shoots in two hard lefts and the men stand glaring at each other as the bell sounds.

Round Seventeen

Baker puts a left to the face and clinches. Attell gets in a hard right swing to the back of Baker's head and a left to the stomach. Baker lands a left to the stomach and Attell uses his right and left in the clinch. Attell hits Baker with a right swing after the gong.

Round Eighteen

Attell got in a right hook to the jaw as they come to a clinch. They spar for a second and Attell sends in a left to the stomach. Baker lands a hard left to the face and covers well as Attell rushes. They break and go to another clinch, both fighting hard with rights and lefts. Attell lands two hard rights to the face, forcing Baker to the ropes.

Round Nineteen

Attell puts a left to the face and one to the body as they come to a clinch. At the break he misses a hard right swing to the head. Attell lands two lefts to the stomach and they clinch. Baker puts in a light left to the face in the break and blocks as they come to another clinch. An exchange of lefts is made to the face in the break. Neither man hears the gong, and they fight furiously in Baker's corner.

Round Twenty

They advance to the center of the ring and shake hands. Baker misses a left jab and they rush together, both fighting hard. Attell lands a left to the stomach and Baker does the same. Attell lands two lefts to the jaw and another one as they come to a clinch. They break and clinch again. Attell misses a hard left hook. Baker puts in a light left to the face and Attell rushes in, fighting furiously as the gong sounds.

Manager of "Maid and Mummy" Does Not Like Decision of Referee Robinson.

Mrs. Anna Boyer, manager of "The Main and the Mummy," which is playing at the Mason this week, was an interested spectator of the Baker-Attell fight last night.

She didn't like the decision a little bit.

"I think that referee was just too mean," she said last night. "That boy with the curly hair should have won the fight. It made me feel bad when he cried there in the ring.

"I don't see why women are not allowed to attend prize fights. I think they are real nice, nothing brutal about them. Why, I've seen football games in which there was a whole lot more blood shed than last night."