By: Marium Khan,
Introduction – One of the most renowned stardom of Boxing, Jake LaMotta, former middleweight boxing Champion departed the world in the recent week at the age of 95 on September 11, 2017.
The news of the demise was announced by one of his relatives on the social media after that his eldest daughter Christi LaMotta and his wife Denise Baker confirmed that the maestro has died due to the complication of pneumonia in a nursing home. The people on social media including his wife, daughter, and nephew paid tribute to the boxer. His wife added that he was a great, sweet, and warm person with great sense of humor. While his niece Diane Ramaglia Bonita praised her uncle by recollecting the past memories through posting pictures on social media. She also took pride by comparing the aligned looks of his son and her uncle.Here we will pay the tribute to the eminent celebrity by shedding some light on the Boxer Jake LaMotta’s Biography. We will discuss his early life, boxing career, and his life after the retirement.
Jake LaMotta Early Life:
Giaccobe LaMotta, more renowned as Jake LaMotta was born to a couple in the city of New York on July 10, 1922. His mother hailed from the United States, whereas his father has the Sicilian background. According to Jake LaMotta, his father is the only person he was afraid of, he experienced regular beating from his father because he didn’t believe in sparing the Rod in dealing with the children. The boxer has a very impoverished family background. The poverty forced his father to compel LaMotta to fight with the children for entertaining the neighborhood adults. In turn, the passerby and adults threw pocket change into the ring from which his father paid the Rent of the house. He was so used to with this feral life and fights that it turned him a burglar in the teen ages. He mugged several innocent people due to which he was charged with the crime. Once he tried to rob a jewelry store but caught up. This act led him to spend some time in the reform school. After that, he renounced the life as a mugger and decided to play with his strengths. Before 1941, at the age of 19, he started to pursue the boxing as a profession.
Jake LaMotta Success Story:
Jake LaMotta got successes in the local rings and made the entry to the big stage in 1942 when he debuts in a middleweight match. He faced the formidable boxer of the time, Ray Robinson for the first time. The first fight was very historic in a sense that Lamotta was the only person who knocked down the formidable Robinson in the first round of the first fight. In the later rounds, the Robinson got control of the fight and won by unanimous decision. The encounter of LaMotta and Robinson in the ring turned into heated rivalry later on that period in which Robinson took the lead and turned out a winner in all fight but one.
The passion and consistency of LaMotta didn’t let him down. He encountered several boxers and gave a blow to many and turned out winning the next 33 out of 40 fights. On November 14, 1947, he fought the most important match of his career. The match triggered several controversies regarding his career. He faced Billy Fox in the match and he was knocked down by him in the fourth round. The news surface out that the match was fixed due to which New York State Athletic Commission suspended LaMotta and withheld his prize money. Almost decade later, the boxer himself confessed to the crime and admitted that he paid $20,000 and thrown the fight in order to get the title shot.
Despite the suspension, the fight ultimately came in June 1949. Jake LaMotta faced renowned French boxer, Marcel Cerdan. The fight was very equal but the LaMotta managed to win through technical knock-out and won the world middleweight Champion title. LaMotta defended his title first time in July 1950. He knocked down and defeated the Tiberio Mitri in the fight. He also retained the title when he confronted against Laurent Dauthiulle in a title match. Though Laurent Dauthiulle had previously defeated LaMotta, he could not make a breakthrough in a title match. The LaMotta successfully defended his World Middleweight Championship title for four years, and this era marked the heyday of his career until he met his archrival Jay Robinson in his sixth fight.
The saint valentine days massacred is the boxing version of the massacre. The term is dubbed by the media for the last fight of Jake LaMotta with his rival Jay Robinson. The LaMotta who had successfully defended his Middleweight Champion title confronted his old formidable opponent who had given serious blows to LaMotta in last five fights. The fight was set on Feb 14, 1951, and it was scheduled for fifteen rounds. Robinson again gave intense blows but LaMotta showed extreme persistence and endurance during the fight. After the furious beating, the Robinson was declared as a winner by a technical knockout and LaMotta lost the title of middleweight champion to his archrival opponent. Despite his failure to defend the title, LaMotta won the hearts of his followers and he was widely praised by the public. In the final round, Robinson was unable to knock him down and LaMotta was lying in the rope despite severe physical punishment which exposed the strength of his physical and mental character.
End of Career:
One can say the saint valentine days massacred fight as an end of Lamotta’s career because he never touched that prominence again. Though he had some fight after that loss he recognized that his time was gone and his boxing skills were fading away. LaMotta played 106 matches in his complete career, in which he recorded 83 wins and 19 losses and four draws. Out of 83 wins, he gained the victories in 30 matches by complete knockout.
After the retirement, LaMotta managed to draw the limelight of the media not from his profession but through various controversies in which he was sent behind the bars due to various criminal activities. He also owned and managed several bars. He mingled and featured with various glamourous models in this period, like Hedi Lamarr and Jayne Mansfield. After switching various jobs he ultimately developed some interest in the acting and turned up a stage actor and comedian. He starred in more than fifteen films, including The Hustler, in which he performed the role of bartender.
Jake LaMotta wrote an autobiography “Raging Bull” in 1970 in which he wrote the ups and downs of his life. The book was adapted by the Director Martin Scorsese as the film. The films featured the Robert De Niro as the Jake LaMotta. The film showed not only the positive aspect of his life but also the negative aspect of LaMotta’s life. It displayed the Lamotta as a domestic abuser as he was violent with his second wife Vicki.
The Actor Robert De Niro went through extensive training under the Boxer Lamotta for portraying the physical strength of the character. Robert lived three months in Paris for gaining weight by eating several foods. The film was only a minor box office success but later on, it gained huge success because the inspiring story of Jack Lamotta was appealing to the American Public.