CARLOS MONZON became middleweight champion in 1970 when he scored a 12th-round knockout of fellow Hall of Famer Nino Benvenuti. Monzon went on to make a division-record 14 title defenses.
Among his victims were Benvenuti, Emile Griffith (twice), Denny Moyer, Bennie Briscoe, Jose Napoles, and Rodrigo Valdes (twice). Of his 15 title fights, 10 ended by knockout.
Monzon's two wins over Valdes came at the end of his career and were very close decision. In the first fight, Monzon retained the title by two, two and four points. In the second contest, he climbed off the canvas to win another close decision.
Monzon's life was equally as violent when he left the ring. He was convicted of killing his long-time companion, who was the mother of his young son. He was sentenced to 11 years in prison and was elected to the Boxing Hall of Fame during that time.
Monzon died in 1995 when a car he was driving went out of control and tumbled into a ditch. He was returning to prison after a weekend furlough.
Clearly one of the best middleweights ever, Monzon was unbeaten over the last 81 bouts of his career, a span of 13 years.
Born: Aug. 7, 1942
Died: Jan. 8, 1995