The Philly fighter called Rocky Balboa who got knocked out in 57 seconds

Rocky Balboa


Shrouded in mystery is the eye-catching yet deflated career of a young fighter named Rocky Balboa, who made his debut as a professional in 1981 – six years after the memorable movie.

The original ‘Rocky’ was a worldwide smash hit. It spawned several successful sequels to become one of the most lucrative franchises in history.

However, one check at the boxing records sees the name ‘Rocky Balboa’ produced on a solitary occasion.

Campaigning at welterweight, ‘Rocky Balboa’ made his on November 7th against future 154lb world champion Robert Hines. Sadly, in 57 seconds via knockout, and would never again grace a boxing ring.

A little more digging into his blink-and-you-miss-it career to find out whether that truly is his real name came up fruitless.

But it would undoubtedly be intriguing to know whether the name was adopted or Balboa was the victim of a massive coincidence. Presumably the former.

Unfortunately, Balboa’s career lasted less than a minute. No one else has since been bold enough to carry the same mantle.

Rocky Balboa

Even with the surname bestowed on him, any contender would potentially be a promoter’s dream and the subject of early-career publicity.

If there was any for this Balboa, it seems to have disappeared without a trace.

Amazingly, Balboa hailed from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. The same city and state as his fictional namesake.

What happened to him after that single bout against Hines remains a mystery.


Opponent Hines would fight another nine years, culminating in an IBF super-welterweight title triumph against Matthew Hilton in 1988 before retirement.

That was followed eighteen months later by two losses from three subsequent bouts.

Hines has laughed off talk of facing Balboa in some Q and A’s that followed his bout 26 years ago. He was as confused as anyone.

How did the boxer come to the ring bearing that name of all names?

Whatever the reason, there wasn’t going to be no rematch.

Furthermore, any idea what happened to ‘Rocky Balboa’ after his pro debut in the early eighties? Please inform WBN –

Phil Jay is the Editor of WBN. An Auxiliary member of the Boxing Writers Association of America since 2018. And a member of the Sports Journalists’ Association. Follow on Twitter @PhilJWBN.