IT WAS quite a fitting nickname when you consider that he turned pro just three weeks shy of his 15th birthday.
Berg spent his early career fighting in London's East End and developed a non-stop attack that earned him another nickname, "The Whitechapel Whirlwind."
Berg moved to the United States in 1928 and battled contender Billy Petrolle to a draw in their first fight and was stopped in their second encounter. But the following year he scored a win over junior welterweight champion Mushy Callahan in a non-title bout. Then Berg opened the 1930 campaign with a decision over Tony Canzoneri and promoters quickly matched him with Callahan again with the title on the line.
Berg scored a 10th-round knockout to win the title. He returned to the United States and made six successful title defenses. He also scored a 10-round decision over Kid Chocolate in a non-title fight. Chocolate, who later won the world featherweight and junior lightweight titles, was unbeaten in 160 amateur and pro fights before meeting Berg. By the year's end, Berg was considered the best pound-for-pound fighter in the world.
Canzoneri, now the world lightweight champion, fought Berg in 1931 with the lightweight and junior welterweight crowns at stake. Berg was knocked out in the fourth round and lost on points in a rematch five months later.
In 1934, Berg knocked out Harry Mizler to win the British lightweight title but failed in an attempt to capture the British Commonwealth crown two years later. He continued fighting until 1945.
Born: June 28, 1909
Died: April 22, 1991