Dempsey and Kearns

Memorable fighter/manager duos are a persistent theme in heavyweight history, and never more so than during the 1920s, when Jack Dempsey (left) was guided by Jack (Doc) Kearns, a man whose name never appeared on a page far from adjectives--wily, shifty, ruthless, brilliant, amoral, conniving, and shrewd were some of the commonly used ones. Kearns was a great manager for at least two reasons: he was fearless (some would say shameless) in seeking advantage, and he was a brilliant judge of opponents, meaning he almost never made a bad match for his fighter. As Dempsey wrote many years later: "Jack Kearns would stop at nothing, and nothing would stop Jack Kearns."