Considered a cagey fighter with a good punch but not much talent, Olin was the world light-heavyweight champion in 1934-35. After retiring, Olin served in the U.S. Coast Guard during World War II.
Birth and Death Dates:
b. July 4, 1908 - d. December 16, 1956
Born on the Fourth of July in New York City, Olin was an exceptional amateur boxer before turning professional. He won all 35 of his amateur fights, and the New York Metropolitan AAU, and Golden Gloves titles in 1928. Turning pro late that year, Olin won his first four fights, three by knockout. Registering win after win in the late 1920s and early 1930s, Olin lost only 11 of his first 55 fights before battling former middleweight champion Lou Brouillard in 1934. Up to this point, Olin had not fared well against top competition and many believed his fight with Brouillard would determine Olin's future as a contender in the light-heavyweight division.
In the span of three months in 1934, Olin was defeated twice by Brouillard. Surprisingly, he was still given a title shot later that year against world light-heavyweight champion Maxie Rosenbloom; the November 11th fight turned out to the be the last time that two Jewish fighters have fought for a world title. The bout itself was a dull affair and many in the audience that day booed the effort of the two fighters. The 15-round fight went the distance with Olin declared the winner, although many who witnessed the fight believed Rosenbloom had actually won.
Olin's first title defense came less than a year after beating Rosenbloom when he faced John Henry Lewis in October 1935. Lewis had defeated Olin the previous year in a non-title bout and outclassed him in the rematch in a 15-round decision. In June 1937, Lewis and Olin fought again for the championship and this time Olin was knocked out in the eighth round by the Hall of Famer. Olin fought for another two years, losing six of his nine fights and retired in 1939, having won 54 of 75 career decisions.
New York City
6'0", 170-180 pounds
Wins: 54 (25 by knockout)
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encyclopedia of JEWS in sports, by Bernard Postal, Jesse Silver, and Roy Silver (New York: Bloch Publishing Co, 1965)