Titles: Never a world champion Record: 116-23-5 with 5 no contests Born: December 12, 1901 in Toronto, Canada Years active: 1923-1941 Nickname: None Never heard of Larry Gains? Don't feel bad you are not in the the minority. Gains is one of the quality black fighters who did not get much recognition in his time, Sam McVey, Sam Langford, Joe Jeanette and Harry Wills are the more prominently covered fighters of that era. There is a good reason for this. The other African American fighters I mentioned all fought in the United States while Larry Gains took his skills to England and Europe to display his skills and thus has been somewhat ignored by history because of this. Gains was born in Canada where established a good amateur record before leaving for England on a cattle boat to start a pro career as a boxer at the age of 21. He promptly lost that first fight in England then traveled across Europe fighting the big men of various nations while basing himself out of Germany. He quickly gained acclaim for his powerful physique and a hard hitting right hand. During those 3 years one of his knockout victims was a young Max Schmeling who only lasted 2 rounds with Gains. At 24 he moved to Leichester England established himself with some good wins then capped the year of by wining the Commonwealth title from Phil Scott in 2 one sided rounds. Two roughly fought defenses against Don McCorkindale and George Cook earned him fans within the country. Now Gains crossed the Atlantic again...this time on a luxury cruise line, to win the Canadian heavyweight title from Soldier Jones in Toronto. He also sparred with Jack Dempsey who admittedly told people he could not hit Gains. In 1929 Gains returned to Europe and for the next 4 years only lost 1 fight defeating future champion Primo Carnera and dew with former light heavyweight champ Mike McTigue. The smooth boxing Len Harvey was given a disputed decision over Gains for the Commonwealth title the next year, a return match with Len Harvey saw Gains defeated again and the very talented Peter Jackson also defeated Gains who was now on the downside of his career. Gains would box on for 7 years until the age of 41 but never for any popular titles. Gains was a well respected man in his times noted for his gentlemanly behavior thruout his career.