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STORY OF PHILIPPINE BOXING PART VII: LITTLE DADO, WORLD FLYWEIGHT AND BANTAMWEIGHT CHAMPION


PhilBoxing.com



Little Dado.

Little Dado became world bantamweight champion in 1940 and world flyweight champion in 1941. Born with the name Eleuterio Zapanta on New Year's Day January 1, 1916 at La Carlota City, Negros Occidental, Little Dado was rated by The Ring as the fifth greatest Filipino boxer in history.

Little Dado was one of the top flyweights and bantamweights in the world during the late 1930s and early 1940s. From 1938 until he hanged up his gloves in 1943, Dado was ranked in the top five in the flyweight division by The Ring.

He obtained the No. 1 overall rating in 1939, during the time when the title was declared vacant by The Ring.

The National Boxing Association (NBA), before it became World Boxing Association (WBA), proclaimed Dado as flyweight champion in 1939. After one defense Dado could no longer make weight and the NBA reinstated Peter Kane as champion in 1942.

During his prime, Dado claimed both the world flyweight and bantamweight titles, with recognition from the California State.

He first won a title when he beat Jimmy McCusker for the California State bantamweight title. Then he followed it up with a victory over Olin Loi prompting a title showdown with another Filipino Small Montana for the world flyweight title California State version.

Little Dado won by decision over Montana. He successfully defended his title against Young Joe Roche. Dado then fought to a draw with future champion Lou Salica.

Dado expressed a desire to win the featherweight title, hoping to become the second boxer to ever hold three different world titles simultaneously.

But he was not able to fight in the featherweight division. Henry Armstrong was the first man to hold three titles in three divisions simultaneously in 1938. He was world champion in the featherweight, lightweight, and welterweight divisions.

Little Dado retired with 70 wins with 22 KO victories, 6 defeats with only one KO loss, and 11 draws, according to Boxrec.com.

He finished his career with a record of 2-0-4 (0 KO) against former or current world titlists. His career record was 44-3-9 (20 KOs) in fights outside the Philippines.

He died on July 7, 1965 at a young age of 49.


Click here to view a list of other articles written by Maloney L. Samaco.


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