One could argue Sam Langford was the finest uncrowned heavyweight prize fighter. Not only did he posses technical skill and thunderous power, he looked the part. Even in today’s world of strength training, which wasn’t accepted then (not to mention drug enhancement) Langford’s body would be an example of how a man should look.
Langford was barred a title fight due to skin color. Though he lost a 15 round decision (controversial to some) to future champion Jack Johnson, Langford gave up almost thirty pounds. Johnson was the first African American given a title shot. Having won it, he refused to extend the same to Langford. There’s much injustice in the world and Sam must have felt stung by the turn of events.
However, he was philosophical about not only how he’d been treated but about the blindness he later suffered. In this very brief video, listen to the end-of-life appreciation of this incredible man. I hope in my golden years I have the strength of character to emulate such a hero!