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Dangerous Dana Rosenblatt


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Dana Rosenblatt was a middleweight and super middleweight contender of the 90's who never quite got the biggest fights or world title fights, but still defeated some big names, who were however at the end of their respective careers: Terry Norris, Vinny Pazienza, Howard Davis jr. His only loss came in the first fight against the same Vinny Pazienza, when he was stopped in devastation fashion. Rosenblatt was a hard hitter with good skills, but the Pazienza fight exposed him as somewhat chinny, since Paz never was known as a very hard hitter. Early on, he was labeled as "Jewish Rocky Marciano", because he came from the same state. He was a southpaw who could fight, simple as that.

"Dangerous" Dana Rosenblatt was born January 26 1972 in Malden, Massachusetts. He began practicing martial arts at the age of 13 and got a black belt in Tang Soo Do at 16. He began boxing as amateur at 15 and won the US amateur middle title. He elected to go pro in 1992 and won the New England title at 160 in his 17th fight, by knocking out Sean Fitzgerald in 1 round. That was in December 1993 and next year in March he scored his first victory over a rather well known boxer, Brett Lally, by TKO9. He then won the WBC Continental Americas middle title by making Frank Savannah retire after 8 rounds, due to a cut. He made 3 defenses of it, stopping Randy Williams in 4 and Chad Parker in 1 and decisioning Floyd Williams, before relinquishing it and then fighting for the WBU title. On April 13 1996, he faced the former Olympic gold medallist and multiple world title challenger at 135 and 140, Howard Davis jr. He won by KO2 after dropping him first in the first round with a straight left and then finally in the second with a leaping left hook. Davis jr retired after that disaster.

Now that he held a better title, offers started coming in for a big fight. He then signed to fight his New England rival Vinny Pazienza, for the WBU super middle title. Pazienza at 5'7 was shorter than 5'10 Rosenblatt, but was a fierce and fast, explosive fighter who harboured a grudge against Rosenblatt-simply because he was being compared to Rocky Marciano and because he was from a neighbor state. In contrast to the brash and cocky Pazienza, Rosenblatt was more a quiet guy who liked to read, "a boring guy" in his own words. They faced off on August 23 '96 at Atlantic City and Rosenblatt got off to a good start by dropping "Pazman" in the first round with a straight right. He dominated the first three rounds as he used his height, reach and southpaw stance to confuse and outbox Pazienza. In the fourth round however, he was suddenly caught by a huge overhand right which apparently "came from nowhere", since Pazienza wasn't known as a one-punch guy. Dangerous Dana went down and looked very hurt, despite beating the count. His eyes were wide open and his face expressed the horror of being hit by a furious guy like Pazienza. Soon thereafter, he was driven to the ropes by Pazman's onslaught and after landing a few more hard punches, referee jumped in and stopped it. However-that didn't stop Pazienza from continuing his assault, landing a couple more punches and even knocking the ref down by mistake!

Despite the very controversial ending, the result was a TKO4-loss for Rosenblatt. He went back on track by beating Glenwood Brown, a former opponent of Meldrick Taylor, by UD10 in January '97. However, he broke his hand in that fight and that kept him out of the ring for a whole year. After winning 3 more fights, he was matched against the washed up Terry Norris, who had lost his world championship at 154 the previous year. The fight happened September 25 '98 at Foxwoods Resort in Mashantucket, Connecticut. Dangerous Dana was able to dominate the fight and counter effectively with left hooks, while Norris was able to solve his southpaw style. Suddenly, in round 9, Rosenblatt appeared to have run out of gas and started holding. He managed to survive till the end but lost the last 4 rounds. Still, it was enough to give him a unanimous victory 116-112 and 115-113 twice. With that, he won the IBA title. 

On November 5 '99, he rematched Vinny Pazienza, this time for the IBO super middle title, again at Foxwoods. It was a close and tough fight, where Rosenblatt got dropped in round 3 but managed to counterpunch effectively and win enough rounds to get a split decision victory. After the fight, a tearful Rosenblatt thanked everyone who had supported him and was thrilled that he managed to avenge his only loss. He never defended that title either and won the IBA Continental Americas SMW title in 2000 by UD-ing Will McIntyre. His last fight was on June 28 2002, against Juan Carlos Viloria; it was an attempted comeback which ended early, when several headbutts by Viloria opened up a nasty cut on Dana's cheek and the fight ended as a technical draw after 3 rounds. He then opted to retire, aged 30 and with a record of 37 wins, 23 by ko, 1 loss and 2 technical draws (another one against James Crawford happened between the second Pazienza fight and the McIntyre fight). 

Dana Rosenblatt was a talented boxer who was set back by that Pazienza-loss and the hand injury he experienced not long thereafter. But, he still proved himself as a capable boxer and fighter, who could punch as well. It is a shame he never got a "real" world title fight, but that's how it goes sometimes. He now works as a mortgage broker. He was one of the last world-class Jewish boxers from America. While he was called "Jewish Rocky Marciano", some sportswriters noted that he was more comparable to Marvin Hagler, being a southpaw boxer-puncher. However, there was one significant difference between the two-Hagler could take a good punch. 



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On 3/25/2023 at 4:04 PM, LondonRingRules said:

- - This around the time we were debating Ali, Rocky, Louis, and Dempsey on the first ever boxing forum, AOL.

Never heard him mentioned then, but obviously a superior fighter. Great find, Boz...go git'em!!!

Thankyou! So good to have you there to react on my threads. 🙏🤗

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