Tommy Burns knocking out Bill Squires (1907)

A Miles Brothers film of the legendary heavyweight prize boxing match between Bill Squires and Tommy Burns, played out at Ocean View, California, on July 4th 1907. Weighing in at a measly 178 pounds, the 5'7" Canadian Burns was a 10-1 underdog against Australia's Bill Squires who was coming off a 20 consecutive knockout streak. To the shock of all present, this mismatch came to an unexpected end in the first round when Burns KO'd Squires in one of the fastest knockouts in the history of boxing up to that point. The fight was labeled the "shortest and fiercest contest on record".

Burns would go on to secure a reputation for knocking out the biggest men in the sport. He wrote, in a book brought out in 1908, about how the face of boxing was changing, no longer being about brute strength but speed:

"In modern boxing speed is nearly everything, and I have always considered my success to be primarily due to the fact that lacrosse and hockey had taught me to be spry and smart on my feet before I ever thought of donning a pair of boxing gloves."


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