He Had Louis Conned for 12 Rounds


Billy Conn, who died Saturday, is best remembered for his 1941 heavyweight championship fight against Joe Louis. He was apparently on his way to a victory by a decision when Louis knocked him out in the 13th round.

Asked why he chose to slug it out with Louis in the 13th round, Conn once said: “What’s the use of being Irish if you can’t be dumb?”

Add Conn: Years later, Conn asked Louis why he wouldn’t let him have the title for at least six months.


Replied Louis: “Billy, I let you have it for 12 rounds and you didn’t know what to do with it.”

Trivia time: Who is the American outdoor record-holder in the pole vault?

Night owl: Michael Jordan’s visit to an Atlantic City casino in the early hours before the second game of the NBA Eastern Conference championship series prompted these headlines from the New York Post:

“Hit Me,” and “Jordan: I Cashed in Early.”

Add Jordan: From Michael Wilbon of the Washington Post: “Even as insomniacs go, Jordan is legendary. He doesn’t sleep. Ever. In Detroit, or Cleveland, places with no casinos, it’s all-night card games, Bid Whist or Poker, with friends and/or insomniac sportswriters.

“When people begin to nod off around 5:30 a.m., Jordan has been known to laugh at the wimps dropping out early.”

Nameless: Houston Astro pitcher Greg Swindell, who played last year for the Cincinnati Reds, on owner Marge Schott: “She’d bring the dog to the dugout before games and say to it, ‘Say hello to the pitcher.’ I didn’t even have a name.”

Man for all seasons: From The Good Doctor in Inside Sports: Question: Could you please tell me who was named to the All-Weather Channel team last year?


Answer: “Jack Snow, Tim Raines, Curt Flood, Hale Irwin, Storm Davis, Phog Allen, Sonny Liston, David Frost, Tommy Bolt and selected players from the Miami Heat, Dallas Tornado, Iowa State Cyclones, Orlando Thunder and Tampa Bay Lightning.”

Now hear this: A fan billing himself as Joe Chicago paid $4,200 for a newspaper ad welcoming Minnesota’s Dave Winfield back to Toronto on May 21. The ad copy referred to the Guinness Book of Records, which lists the 1-hour 7-minute applause for opera singer Luciano Pavarotti as the longest standing ovation on record.

He wanted fans to give Winfield, who asked for noise from the Blue Jays’ fans down the stretch last year, much of the same. The ovation was loud, but it lasted only 25 seconds.

Smug?Susan Kerr, CBS director of sports communications, on NBC Sports President Dick Ebersol obtaining former Washington Redskin coach Joe Gibbs as a color commentator:

“I’d congratulate Dick, but he’s too busy patting himself on the back.”

Trivia answer: Joe Dial, with a vault of 19 feet 6 1/2 inches in 1987.

Quotebook: Promoter Dan Duva to promoter Don King: “You and the truth haven’t been in the same room since Carl (The Truth) Williams fought Mike Tyson.”