November 7, 1988 Bob Dylan at Boxing Match – Nevada

Bob was given a free ticket to this fight by Lalonde, who lost the WBC light-heavyweight title to Sugar Ray Leonard early on. Did you know, Donny Lalonde is a fan of Bob Dylan’s music, and had an autographed photo of the musician at his training camp in Lakeville, Pa. In the photo below, Bob can be clearly seen in the crowd during the coverage, right between the fighters in this case, as Leonard lands one of the final punches.

Bob Dylan Boxing

 7 November 1988 – BOB & DONNY
Donny Lalonde vs. Sugar Ray Leonard fight, Las Vegas, NV
Source: The Ring March 1989 issue, as quoted in RTS #16, p.9.


Dylan’s friendship with boxer Donny Lalonde has already been observed – as indeed was a beshaded
Dylan on the video of the Lalonde–Sugar Ray Leonard championship fight. However in the March 1989 issue of ‘The Ring’, the US’s premiere fight magazine, there’s an account of Dylan’s appearance at the fight by Phil Woolever. Woolever reports that Dylan “sat restlessly, staring ahead” throughout he fight. Pretty strange behaviour! It seems Bob was in Lalonde’s dressing room before the fight and some of his “acoustic classics” were used to psych the fighter up. “Dylan looked like someone you could talk about the fights with. It was a correct impression” Woolever reports. “I’m not a fight fan, I just like to watch guys I know fight,” said Bob. However “Dylan’s eyes came to life as he spoke of long jabs to the body, crashing right hands..” When Golden Boy Lalonde was finally knocked over, Bob was naturally disappointed. “I thought it was sad,” he confessed, “I thought Donny was gonna go a little longer, ya know?

Courtesy of: The Research of Pamela K. Melenchen

🎥 THE FIGHT:Sugar Ray Leonard vs Donnie Lalonde part 2/5


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  1. Staring straight ahead at a boxing match is “strange behavior”? He sits restlessly. He is a genius who is there to watch his friend, not to be seen or seek the attention of fans and other celebrities. I went to the De la Hoya vs Vargas fight. I kept my eyes on the ring, as that was where the fighters were. It was straight ahead of me. Me and Bob have a lot in common, I guess.

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