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Famous boxing brothers: Bobick


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Bobick brothers Duane and Rodney were American heavyweight contenders of the 70's who were both (especially Duane) considered "great white hopes" for a while. However, despite defeating some good boxers, none of them achieved true success. Rodney's career also tragically got cut short when he died in a car accident in 1977, while Duane continued fighting until 1979, but wasted his biggest chance the same year his brother died, when he was knocked out by Ken Norton in 1 round in his biggest fight. Both stood 6'3 and were good punchers, while Duane also had the amateur pedigree and even defeated Teofilo Stevenson once. Let's find out more about them.

 

In the tradition I kept before, we start with the older brother, Duane. Born 24 August 1950 in Bowlus, Minnesota, he later lived in Little Falls in the same state. He started boxing in the Navy and was a 3-time All-Navy champion. As mentioned, he stands 6'3 and has a big reach of 82 inches. While in the Navy, he fought Mike Weaver (who also started boxing there) and won a fight against him. As amateur, he won the 1971 Pan Am Games, notably defeating Teofilo Stevenson in the semi-final 5-0 on points. He was also the national AUU champion that year and next year he won the Golden Gloves as well, before competing at the Olympics in Munich. After first defeating Yuri Nesterov of Soviet Union 5-0, he met Stevenson in the second round and after initially doing well, he faded after the first two rounds and took a beating and was stopped in the third. He also defeated Larry Holmes in the amateurs. His record there is 93-13 with 61 ko's. He turned pro in April 1973 and won his first 19 fights by ko. In July 1974, he faced Mike Weaver again and stopped him by TKO 7. Weaver would later of course become the WBA champion. He went 38-0, also beating the likes of Randy Neumann (TKO 5), Larry Middleton (UD 10), Scott Le Doux (UD 10) and Chuck Wepner (TKO 6), before fighting Ken Norton on 11 May 1977. The fight was at Madison Square Garden and Bobick started slowly and paid for it when he was hit with a right uppercut in the Adam's Apple and then stopped with a follow up barrage, after only 58 seconds. It was an embarrassing lesson and a loss from which he never quite recovered, nor his career. He went back on track by stopping LeDoux by TKO 8 and knocking out Pedro Agosto in 3, but then suffered another upset ko loss against the South African puncher Kallie Knoetze, fighting away in Johannesburg on 4 February '78. He was put down in round 3 and beat the count but was counted out his feet. He scored a few more knockout wins, but his career was again derailed with another KO 1-loss to Big John Tate in February '79 and after getting stopped due to a bad cut in his next fight against George Chaplin, in July same year, he called it quits. His record is 48(42)-4. An excellent amateur who never fulfilled his promise as a pro, Duane otherwise had all the tools as he was tall enough, physically strong, could box and punch.

 

Then we go to his younger brother Rodney. While somewhat less talented than his brother, Rodney still was capable and scored some good wins against famous fighters. He was also only stopped once-against Larry Holmes. Rodney was born 23 September 1951 in Bowlus and lived his whole life there. Somewhat sturdier built than his brother, it earned him the nickname "The Bowlus Bear". Rodney was a sparring partner of Muhammad Ali and boxed an exhibition with him in Miami Beach in 1975. He had his first pro fight before his brother actually, on 8 March 1972 and won it by KO 2. Not being the amateur star like Duane, he turned pro earlier. He went 10-0 before losing to Dan Johnson by MD 10. He lost a couple more decisions before his career started taking off. On 19 February '74, he fought the former WBA light heavy champion Vicente Rondon, who was equally tall as him and could punch, at least at 175. Rodney won after Rondon failed to answer the bell after the second round. On 22 March, he defeated the same guy his brother would defeat later that year-Mike Weaver. Rodney won by UD 10 though. On 31 July same year, he also defeated the tough contender Ron Stander by the same result. He started 1975 by stopping the hard-hitting Terry Krueger by a TKO 3, but then lost on points to Jody Ballard. He also lost to the guy his brother twice defeated, Scott LeDoux, also on points. After winning one easy fight, he faced Larry Holmes, who had lost to his brother as amateur. The fight was in Quezon City, Philippines, for some reason, on 1 October, and Rodney suffered his first and only stoppage loss when he lost by TKO 6 to the future legend. In 1977, he won two fights, the last one taking place on 6 May, before he was killed on 5 June. He was driving home from another town after a softball game and somehow hit an electric pole and died on the spot, aged only 25. His record is 37(17)-7.

 

This was the thread about the Bobick brothers, two former American boxers of Polish-German heritage.

 

Bobick_cropped.jpeg

Duane

 

Rodney_Bobick.jpg

Rodney

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--- Knocked out the Ali trained Lar in the Olympic Trials such that he STFO Ali in the middle of a Cosell broadcast bragging about how good Lar was, a double KO by Duane.

 

Both Ali and Lar ducked him as a contender though Lar took on the lesser brother who was never ranked and KOed him as revenge.

 

Cowards!

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--- Knocked out the Ali trained Lar in the Olympic Trials such that he STFO Ali in the middle of a Cosell broadcast bragging about how good Lar was, a double KO by Duane.

 

Both Ali and Lar ducked him as a contender though Lar took on the lesser brother who was never ranked and KOed him as revenge.

 

Cowards!

Yeah, I wondered about that. It seemed like the easy way to get revenge. Seems like our mr. HOFer did not feel so confident back then. :haha:

 

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