Inducted on October 26, 1980
Sam Rose is living proof that it a statement known by all, friends, fans, worshippers alike. At age 85, Sam is still in search for a bright prospect whom he hopes and knows will, under his supervision, lead the pair to that silver lining in the sky, reserved for Boxers . . .
Rose has spent almost 60 years in the boxing profession. First as a “second” and secondly, as manager.
Without question tutorship has been excellent during the past six decades. The great contenders, Freddie Fiducia, Irish Jack Dennis, Al Rossi, Paul Cortlyn, SO.lie LaFuria, Tex Gonzales, Frankie Bove, Maxie Fisher, Shorty O’Hearn, Vince Scarpini, Frank Martinovich and Joey Zodda were among the top glovers of the Rose stable.
Sam entered into the game as manager of Fiducia.
Freddie began his ring career upon graduation from East Side High School at the early age of 16.
Rose immediately had his first win. Freddie did not meet the minimum age of 18 for professionalism. As quick as a flash, Sam changed Freddie’s name to Martin. He continued with this change until Freddie reached the mandatory age of 18. Yes, Freddie was a boy wonder. Under Sam’s direction he was the highest paid preliminary boxer ($100.00) for a four-round bout. Sam recalls, “They were paying the four-rounders only $10. then.”
Fiducia earned the distinction of boxing in every division, from Flyweight to Heavyweight. Very, very rare in boxing . .
Al Rossi was one of my favorites reminisces Sam, “He was like my son.” Al had gone to California, continued Sam, but never forgot my birthday. A gift was always in the mail. Guiding his career was a real easy and acceptable occupation. I managed to match him with four World’s Champions, Solly Krieger, Ben Jeby, Teddy Yaroz and Freddie Steele … I was really proud of him.
Paul Cortlyn was one of the most devastating punchers in the welterweight division. He set a record that to date stands. Three top rated South Americans were touring the country. Paul, asking to be matched with each at the St. Nicholas Arena, knocked out each in successive bouts within a three-week period.
Jimmy Johnson, world famed promoter and manager, sponsored the boys from South America. He could not believe his eyes following Paul’s knockout of the first.
He matched the second South American with Paul again Paul stretched this opponent. Johnson, still puzzled, brought in the third. Paul, here too, demonstrated his tremendous punching power via a knockout, the flip-flop type, in the early rounds.
Teddy bears too are ferocious, lectures Sam, and perhaps in the ring my boys were as tough and fierce as any of them. But outside, the” are ‘without doubt the finest of gentlemen.
Tex Gonzales fought several main events in Madison Square Garden. Not a disparaging word of his conduct within the ring or out.
Martinovich became a sensation in New Orleans; following a half dozen bouts there, the fans clamored for his return.
Irish Jack Dennis boxed a champion…and Vince Scapari, now a successful contractor in Middlesex County was main bouter in the top clubs in this state.
Joey Zodda too, had an opportunity to fight Ike Williams, the former Lightweight Champion of the World.
Rather evident that Sam had quite a stable. Often referred to as the Safety Sam Man; a title derived thru his cautious manner of handling his proteges. He a: times was criticized. Sam nevertheless, never signed one of his charges unless he personally saw an opponent. of his stable in action … an attribute which has sustained his reputation for over one-half a century . . .
“I checked things out myself, he would say, that way if my fighter loses, then I am the only one to blame.”
Sam was always proud of his men. He booked there from coast to coast. No, not one of them was ever seriously hurt while under his management. He abides by the credo, “If you can’t say or do something nice for someone, don’t do or say anything.”
On that, one of many fine principles of Sam Rose, the Selection Committee of the New Jersey Boxing Hall of Fame made an excellent choice in enshrining Sam Rose amongst Boxing’s Greats in its archives.
“In acknowledging his acceptance,” recalls Mario Centi, president of the Hall, “Sam was overwhelmed with emotion.” “Are you sure, I’m the one elected,” asked Sam, “isn’t there many more qualified than I?”
“No,” replied Centi, “there isn’t any mistake. Your election was unanimous. A well-deserved tribute fer your contribution to boxing.”