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27 July 2001 Doris Day vs Mitzi Gaynor

Page history last edited by Archer844 9 years, 2 months ago

 

 

Retro Bout: (CA. 1950)

 

Posted by simguy  7-27-01  

 

It wasn't uncommon for studios to put young fighters in exhibition bouts to build their confidence and ring savvy before unleashing them to do battle in-house or against rival outfits. This fight, held in the early fifties, between 20ish ingenue Mitzi Gaynor and 28 year old veteran Doris Day was just such a contest - a skills building exercise for a promising young talent, nothing more. But when Day found out (or perhaps had been deliberately told, sources are unclear which) that execs had asked Gaynor, being the bigger woman, to carry her slighter opponent, Doris' pride got the better of her. Determined to show Mitzi up in the ring, Day played sweetness and light right up to the opening bell.

 

Doris wore yellow and white check hipster bikini, bra style top, a still-brunette Mitzi wore black bandeau hipster bikini.

 

Round One: Girls stalked out of their corners in fighting crouches, but while Gaynor looked to paw jabs, Day lustily dug right hands into the pit of Mitzi's stomach, putting a biting left hook on top to crack Gaynor's mouth with authority. Mitzi reeled back under the onslaught, Doris' back foot coming off the canvas as she plowed her right hands with everything she could muster. Gaynor hit the ropes and briefly clinched, telling Doris to "tone it down."

Day responded with a thudding left/right to the trunkline that had Gaynor stooping forward in pain. Mitzi had had enough - from that point on, this was a fight -- two women standing and slugging one another with every intention of producing hurt, and the bigger girl started to have her way. By the final moments, Gaynor had beaten Day across the ring to the far ropes - Doris with her arms crossed, bending side to side as Mitzi stuffed scooping lefts and rights into the flat midriff, leaving the blonde on boneless legs at the bell.

 

Round Two: Perhaps Mitzi had felt she had proved her point and relaxed, but whatever the explanation, a resilient veteran Doris came out pitching to once again take a complacent Mitzi by surprise. Day, with a heavy delivery, JAMMED home that plowing right to Mitzi's breadbasket with fearful commitment. That punch set everything else up as Gaynor hunched forward in gurgling discomfort. Raking hooks batted across Mitzi's face and ribs - Day was punching with vicious determination, throwing her body recklessly into the blows. Gaynor's eyes went glassy as punch after punch ripped home. Mitzi's back hit the ropes, her left arm across her belly, right arm crossed to her left cheek, stupefied by the blinding two fisted malice of Doris Day.

 

There was no doubt in anyone's mind - Day was going for the stoppage, laying a tremendous beating on Mitzi as she lolled hurt at the ropes and simply soaked up her medicine. After a minute of senseless fury, Day was punched out, Gaynor busted up, but still standing and Mitzi began to reply. Slowly at first, Mitzi punching out of a crossed arm stance would dig her right into Doris' tummy, then fall in close to walk her back a step - then twist into the short left clout oon the chops, again falling in, crowding the blonde into retreat.

 

Methodically working Day back, Mitzi had Doris open mouthed and hurting in the final minute and GAYNOR turned it on as the crowd rose to it's feet. Doris bent forward, seated on the ropes, as Mitzi worked with her chin on the blonde's shoulder, ripping horrific rights up in behind the elbow, bending her knees to fit that digging left hook in on the other side, constantly using her shoulder to lever the smaller woman back. With seconds left, Day sobbed and sunk to all fours. Gaynor stepped back and spat blood, glaring angrily at her kneeling opponent just as the bell sounded to save Day from the KO.

 

Round Three: No one who saw it will ever forget Doris Day getting off her stool for the third, then lolling backwards as if she might fall back down, then lurching forward at the bell on autopilot. She was tragically used up as Mitzi stomped forward to finish her. Gaynor held nothing back - reaching with a measuring left, she clocked Day with a sweeping right on the mouth, jolting the blonde a quarter turn to her left and draping her onto the ropes. Mitzi squared up to finish with heartless ferocity, reefing lefts and rights at the shell-shocked blonde who's limp guard no longer offered any protection against the leather. Day slid to her right along the ropes as Gaynor cranked straight arm hooks from the side, catching Doris full on the face. Double D was done! With a savage head snap, Day went out on her feet and slid down the ropes to take a seat, her chin lolling to her chest as she lay helpless at Mitzi's feet.

KO3 Mitzi Gaynor.

 

An angry, strutting, Mitzi Gaynor had to be restrained and escorted from the ring, feeling - with some justification - that she had been set up and vowing too punish Doris Day for taking unfair advantage.

 

"You tell her when she wakes up, there's more of where that came from any time she wants it," Gaynor is reported to have said.

As is often the case in Hollywood, some of the bitterest, most intense rivalries have occurred between the sweetest, most vivacious women outside of the ring - and surely this was the case between Day and Gaynor. They would have the privilege of fighting each again at every stage of their respective, and lengthy, careers, neither ever forgetting the white hot rage produced by their initial meeting.

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