Watch Boxing Legend Sugar Ray Robinson Dance with Gene Kelly

filed under: video

Sugar Ray Robinson was one of the greatest fighters to ever slip on boxing gloves. He owned the welterweight title from 1946 to 1951, and in the 1950s he boasted the title of Middleweight Champion of the World five times. According to Ron Flatter at ESPN, “At his peak, his record was 128-1-2.”

Oh, and he was also a tap dancer. In 1952, Robinson left the ring and started a career in showbiz. He toured with the Count Basie Orchestra, performed on the Ed Sullivan Show, and even played at Harlem’s Apollo Theater. In some bits, he would tap dance and skip rope at the same time! Although he considered his dance training tougher than his boxing regimen, Robinson’s act was not very polished. Time magazine called him a “second-rate song and dance man,” and most critics considered him average at best. By 1955, Robinson ditched his dancing shoes and gave boxing another go.

Still, we think this tap bit with Gene Kelly KOs Floyd Mayweather’s moves any day.

More from mental_floss...

July 31, 2014 - 1:00pm
submit to reddit