Comedian Bob Hope and his Boxing Roots

 

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Comedian Bob Hope and his Boxing Roots

Bob Hope boxing Sugar Ray Leonard (L) as Mickey Rooney referees.

Bob Hope, Rocky Marcianon and Milly Vitali.

Bob Hope, Rocky Marciano and Milly Vitali.

Bob Hope teaches kids how to box

Bob Hope (R) with heavyweight champion Floyd Patterson (L)

Bob Hope with Smokin’ Joe Frazier

Bob Hope with Sugar Ray Robinson

Bob Hope (r) with heavyweight champion George Foreman

Legendary entertainer Bob Hope (1903-2003) had a brief career as a boxer in 1919 fighting under the name Packy East. He had three wins and one loss, and later, once his show business career took off,  he participated in a few staged charity boxing matches during his long successful life. Besides participating actively in the sports of golf and boxing, Bob Hope also owned a small stake in his hometown baseball team, the Cleveland Indians.      

Bob Hope vs. Primo Carnera.

Bob Hope vs. Primo Carnera.

Hope appeared in over 70 films and shorts, as well as appeared on Radio and Television.  From the 1950’s till his death, Hope became a Television staple for his yearly anticipated Television Specials. On these Television specials, Hope would often  have famous boxers from Jack Dempsey, Max Baer, Rocky Marciano, Joe Frazier, Muhammad Ali, and Larry Holmes to lighter fighters like Roberto Duran, Marvelous Marvin Hagler, and Sugar Ray Leonard as guests, to name a few. Besides his show Business career, Hope also served as an active honorary chairman on the board of Fight for Sight. He hosted their Lights On telecast in 1960 and donated $100,000 to establish the Bob Hope Fight for Sight Fund.HOPEBob Hope Comics Boxingaaa

Often times Bob Hope frequently recruited numerous top celebrities for the annual “Lights On” fundraiser; as an example, he hosted Joe Frazier, Yvonne De Carlo, and Sergio Franchi as headliners for the show at Philharmonic Hall in Milwaukee on April 25, 1971.  Bob Hope also entertained Armed Forces troops all over the globe in every war from World War II to the Gulf War.

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Bob Hope and heavyweight king Larry Holmes

Bob Hope and heavyweight king Larry Holmes

Bob Hope and Mickey Rooney in OFF LIMITS.

Bob Hope and Primo Carnera in CASANOVA’S BIG NIGHT.

Bob Hope Battling Jack Dempsey. (CLICK PHOTO TO VIEW VIDEO)

Bob Hope Boxer with Bing Crosby

Bob Hope fighting Jack Dempsey (CLICK PHOTO TO VIEW VIDEO)

Bob Hope getting ready to fight Rocky Marciano at MSG with Bing Crosby refereeing.

Bob Hope in OFF LIMITS 1953.

Bob Hope Joe Frazier

Bob Hope vs. Jack Dempsey.

Bob Hope vs. Rocky Marciano

Bob Hope vs. Sammy Davis Jr. with Muhammad Ali refereeing.

Bob Hope vs. Sugar Ray Leonard with Mickey Rooney refereeing.

Bob Hope with Art Aragon (L) and Jimmy Roche (R) and William Holden with Jimmy Roche and Art Aragon

Three former boxers – Bob Hope with Dean Martin and Frank Sinatra

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Bob Hope with Jack Dempsey 1951 TV Skit

Bob Hope with Jack Dempsey and belt.

Bob Hope, Jack Dempsey and Bing Crosby

Bob Hope, Muhammad Ali and Sammy Davis Jr.

Rocky Marciano, Bob Hope and Barbara Eden

Bob Hope Boxing Ad for Texaco.


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