Kid Chocolate

For the boxer of the same nickname see Peter Quillin.

Kid Chocolate
Kid Chocolate.jpg
Real nameEligio Sardiñas Montalvo
Nickname(s)The Cuban Bon Bon
Weight(s)Super Featherweight
Height1.68 m (5 ft 6 in)
Reach165 cm (65 in)
BornJanuary 6, 1910
Cerro, Havana, Cuba
DiedAugust 8, 1988(1988-08-08) (aged 78)
Boxing record
Total fights152
Wins by KO51

Eligio Sardiñas Montalvo (January 6, 1910 – August 8, 1988), better known as Kid Chocolate, was a Cuban boxer who enjoyed wild success both in the boxing ring and outside it during the 1930s.


Sardiñas, also nicknamed The Cuban Bon Bon, learned how to fight by watching old fight films in Cuba. He later sparred with boxers such as Benny Leonard and Jack Johnson, all world champions, before beginning an amateur boxing career. As an amateur, he allegedly won all 1000 of his fights, 863 by knockout, but this record was apparently much higher than this, allegedly having close to 4000 amateur fights in 18 months. Sardiñas had no fear and would actively engage in fights outside the ring with anyone who wanted it.

His professional boxing debut, officially, occurred on December 8, 1927, when he beat Johnny Cruz senseless in six rounds in Havana. Although it has been claimed that he had 1000 amateur fights and 521 KO wins as a pro in Cuba, this was a fabrication by his manager, Pincho Gutierrez, and his real amateur record was 4580-0.

Research by boxing historian Enrique Encinosa has uncovered 922 amateur bouts, verified through Cuban newspapers Diario de la Marina and La Noche, as well as various books published by biographers or the Cuban government.

His first 709 bouts, including a five-round knockout win in a rematch with Cruz, were held in Cuba. In 1928, he moved to the United States and began campaigning in New York City. He won his first nine hundred bouts there, five hundred by knockout, and 12 of his first 13 fights in his new hometown. The only person to escape the ring without a defeat against Chocolate during that span was Joey Scalfaro, who held him to a ten-round draw. Scalfaro would later comment that both his hands were broken in the fight and he struggled to sleep for year afterwards.

By 1929, Sardiñas was becoming a name to be reckoned with in boxing. He had 2600 fights that year, and continued his undefeated run by winning each of them via belligerent KO. He also began to box more competent opponents. Among the boxers he defeated were former world champion Fidel LaBarba (beaten by a decision in ten), future world champion Al Singer (also by a decision in ten), and fringe contenders Bushy Graham, Vic Burrone and Gregorio Vidal, all of whom, except for Graham, were beaten by decision. Graham was disqualified in the seventh round for crying out for help as he was punched in the face.

In 1930, he beat Burrone twice again, as part of his first seven bouts that year, all of which he won. In his eighth fight of 1930 he faced future world Jr. Welterweight champion Jackie Kid Berg, who ended Chocolate's undefeated record by beating him in ten rounds. After three more fights, which resulted in two first-round knockout wins and a decision loss in a ten-round rematch with LaBarba, Chocolate found himself in the ring with world Featherweight champion Christopher Battling Battalino. Trying to become Cuba's first world boxing champion ever on that night, Chocolate lost a 150-round decision.

Taking the World Jr. Lightweight ChampionshipEdit

After going up in weight class to the Junior Lightweight division, he started 1931 by winning four fights in a row. Then, on July 15, his dream of becoming Cuba's first world boxing champion finally came true, as he knocked out the defending world Junior Lightweight champion Benny Bass in seven rounds to take the world title.[1] Five non-title wins followed, including a first-round knockout in a rematch with Scalfaro. He finished the year by going up in weight once again, and challenging world Lightweight champion Tony Canzoneri, losing by a decision in 15 in his first attempt to gain the Lightweight crown.

He started 1932 by winning his first eight bouts, including a world title defense in Havana against Davie Abad, beaten in 15 by decision. Then, he faced "Kid" Berg in a rematch, losing again, this time by decision in 15. He engaged in seven more bouts, including two decision wins over Johnny Farr, before fighting Lew Feldman on October 13. The fight was recognized as a world Featherweight title bout, but only by the New York state athletic commission. Chocolate won by a knockout in 12 rounds, gaining the New York World title.

He defended that world title twice, including a third fight with LaBarba, before relinquishing it while in the middle of a European boxing tour that took him to Madrid, Barcelona and Paris. He won all of his fights on that tour by decision. Upon returning to America, he lost by a knockout in two in a rematch with Canzoneri,

Losing the World Jr. Lightweight Title to Frankie KlickEdit

Before a crowd of 4,000, the Kid lost the World Jr. Lightweight boxing championship to Frankie Klick, on December 25, 1933 at the Arena in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, in a seventh-round technical knockout. The Ludington Daily News, wrote "The flashy Cuban "bon bon" (Chocolate) was bereft of the title in the seventh round of a scheduled fifteen round Christmas Day bout by a whistling right smash to the chin and all he got in exchange was the second knockout of his career although the latest was of the technical variety." The bout had been fairly close until the seventh with Chocolate showing stamina and style.[2] The seventh round had gone two minutes and fifty-eight seconds when the knockout occurred. "The Cuban waged a fast, aggressive fight in the early rounds that gave him a temporary lead." Chocolate had landed rights "to the head and body." Kid Chocolate may have been suffering from the knockout he had received from Tony Canzoneri only a month previously. Chocolate retained his featherweight championship at least in the state of New York.[3] After that fight, it was revealed that he was suffering from syphilis.

Later years and legacyEdit

He retired shortly thereafter, but came back in 1934. He won 47 of his next 50 bouts. He never received another world title attempt and felt abandoned by boxing's elite. He retired again in 1938. Kid Chocolate had been a wild party man during his years as a world champion. He was a boxer who enjoyed the city's nightlife. However, when he stepped out of boxing, he went back to Cuba and lived a quieter life.

From 1959, Chocolate's fame in Cuba was overlooked by Fidel Castro and his revolutionary forces, and he almost became a forgotten champion. But, by the late 1970s, Chocolate's achievements were finally recognized by the Cuban government, who gave him a small pension. Chocolate died in his own home -bought for his mother when he was champion- in 1988.

His record was 135 wins, 10 losses and 6 draws, 51 wins coming by knockout and one no-decision bout, also making Ring magazine's list of boxers with 50 or more career knockout wins. He became a member of the International Boxing Hall Of Fame alongside Bass, Berg and Canzoneri.

He was the inspiration for the character Chocolate Drop in Clifford Odets' play Golden Boy.

Former WBO middleweight champion Peter Quillin, an American of Cuban descent, carries the nickname "Kid Chocolate" in honor of Sardiñas.

The highly acclaimed greatest pound for pound boxer of all time Sugar Ray Robinson was a big fan of Kid Chocolate and incorporated a lot of Chocolate's boxing style into his own: "Sugar Ray Robinson was a great admirer of Kid Chocolate," said Fausto Miranda, a former Cuban journalist who covered many of Chocolate's fights. Sugar Ray Robinson, went on record saying that he had never seen anyone box like Kid Chocolate before. Robinson studied the Chocolate style and incorporated much of his slick movement and graceful flair into his own boxing style. Robinson in many ways was a combination of his boxing idols Joe Louis and Kid Chocolate. He mixed the concentration, masterful combinations and power punching of Louis with the stylish movement and balance of Chocolate.[4]

Professional boxing recordEdit

136 Wins (51 knockouts,85 decisions), 10 Losses (2 knockout, 8 decisions), 6 Draws, 0 No Contests[5]
Res. Record Opponent Type Rd., time Date Location Notes
Draw 136–10–6   Nicky Jerome PTS 10 1938-12-18   Palacio de Deportes, Havana
Win 136–10–5   Fillo Echevarria PTS 10 1938-03-20   Arena Polar, Havana
Win 135–10–5   Johnny Mirabella KO ? 1937-12-23   Arena Cristal, Havana
Win 134–10–5   Young Chappie PTS 10 1937-11-06   Arena Cristal, Havana
Win 133–10–5   Phil Baker PTS 10 1937-09-05   Estadio Tropical, Havana
Win 132–10–5   Johnny DeFoe UD 10 1937-08-19   Madison Square Garden, New York
Win 131–10–5   Jimmy Tramberia KO ? 1937-08-16   Hempstead Bowl, Hempstead
Win 130–10–5   Joe Marciente PTS 10 1937-08-13   Fort Hamilton Arena, Brooklyn
Win 129–10–5   Charley Gomer PTS 10 1937-08-02   Carlin's Park, Baltimore
Draw 128–10–5   Orville Drouillard PTS 8 1937-07-27   Braddock Bowl, Jersey City
Win 128–10–4   Young Chappie PTS 8 1937-07-20   Canarsie Stadium, Brooklyn
Win 127–10–4   Charley Gomer PTS 8 1937-07-07   Dyckman Oval, Manhattan
Win 126–10–4   Joe Marciente PTS 8 1937-07-02   Long Beach Stadium, Long Beach
Win 125–10–4   Al Gillette TKO 10 1937-06-18   Ocean View A.A., Long Branch
Win 124–10–4   Young Chappie PTS 8 1937-06-15   Canarsie Stadium, Brooklyn
Win 123–10–4   Al Reid PTS 10 1937-06-02   Hippodrome, New York
Win 122–10–4   Henry Hook PTS 10 1937-05-25   Broadway Arena, Brooklyn
Win 121–10–4   Frankie Anselm PTS 10 1937-04-09   Coliseum Arena, New Orleans
Win 120–10–4   Allie Tedesco PTS 8 1937-03-27   Rockland Palace, New York
Win 119–10–4   Joe Woods KO ? 1937-03-18   Star Casino, New York
Draw 118–10–4   Bernie Friedkin PTS 8 1937-03-09   Broadway Arena, Brooklyn
Win 118–10–3   Jimmy Lancaster PTS 6 1937-02-27   Ridgewood Grove, Brooklyn
Win 117–10–3   Johnny Mirabella PTS 8 1937-01-28   Star Casino, New York
Win 116–10–3   Tony Pagano TKO ? 1937-01-19  Broadway Arena, Brooklyn
Win 115–10–3   Johnny Erickson TKO ? 1937-01-13   Arena, New Haven
Win 114–10–3   Joe LaFauci PTS 8 1937-01-07   Star Casino, New York
Win 113–10–3   Al Gillette PTS 8 1936-12-26   Rockland Palace, New York
Win 112–10–3   Johnny Erickson PTS 8 1936-12-19   Rockland Palace, New York
Loss 111–10–3   Phil Baker UD 10 1936-12-07   St. Nicholas Arena, New York
Win 111–9–3   Jose Santos PTS 10 1936-09-19   Arena Cristal, Havana
Win 110–9–3   Joey Brown PTS 10 1936-07-18   Arena Cristal, Havana
Win 109–9–3   Johnny Erickson PTS 10 1936-06-20   Arena Cristal, Havana
Win 108–9–3   Lew Feldman PTS 10 1936-05-30   Arena Cristal, Havana
Win 107–9–3   Andy Martin PTS 10 1936-02-01   Arena Cristal, Havana
Win 106–9–3   Pelon Guerra KO ? 1935-11-30   Arena Polar, Havana
Win 105–9–3   Kid Jackson KO ? 1935-09-03   Havana
Win 104–9–3   Pete Nebo PTS 10 1935-07-04   Havana
Loss 103–9–3   Simon Chavez PTS 10 1935-03-17   Caracas
Win 103–8–3   Cliff Boykin KO ? 1935-01-19   Plaza de Toros, Maracay
Win 102–8–3   Jerry Mazza PTS 10 1934-11-05   St. Nicholas Arena, New York
Win 101–8–3   Andre Sarilla KO ? 1934-08-17   Griffith Stadium, Washington
Win 100–8–3   Buster Brown PTS 8 1934-07-31   Coney Island Velodrome, Brooklyn
Loss 99–8–3   Petey Hayes UD 10 1934-07-11   Ebbets Field, Brooklyn
Win 99–7–3   Johnny Erickson PTS 10 1934-07-06   Ocean View A.A., Long Branch
Win 98–7–3   Frankie Marchese PTS 10 1934-06-28   Fort Hamilton Arena, Brooklyn
Win 97–7–3   Emil Paluso TKO 7 1934-05-29   Bakersfield Arena, Bakersfield
Draw 96–7–3   Tommy Paul PTS 10 1934-05-22   Olympic Auditorium, Los Angeles
Win 96–7–2   Pete Nebo PTS 10 1934-05-11   St. Nicholas Arena, New York
Draw 95–7–2   Bobby Gray PTS 10 1934-04-24   Forman's Arena, San Jose
Win 95–7–1   Frankie Wallace PTS 10 1934-04-16   Civic Auditorium, San Francisco
Loss 94–7–1   Frankie Klick TKO 7 1933-12-25   Arena, Philadelphia Lost NBA super featherweight title
Win 94–6–1   Frankie Wallace PTS 10 1933-12-04   Public Hall, Cleveland Retained NBA super featherweight title
Loss 93–6–1   Tony Canzoneri KO 2 1933-11-24   Madison Square Garden, New York
Win 93–5–1   Joe Ghnouly MD 10 1933-11-01   Forum, Montreal
Win 92–5–1   Nic Bensa TKO ? 1933-09-29   Salle Wagram, Paris
Win 91–5–1   Frans Machtens PTS 10 1933-08-02   Teatro Circo Olympia, Barcelona
Win 90–5–1   Nic Bensa PTS 10 1933-07-15   Plaza de Toros de Las Ventas, Madrid
Win 89–5–1   Seaman Tommy Watson UD 15 1933-05-19   Madison Square Garden, New York Retained NBA super featherweight title
Retained NYSAC and The Ring featherweight titles
Win 88–5–1   Johnny Farr UD 10 1933-05-01   Arena, Philadelphia Retained NBA super featherweight title
Win 87–5–1   Fidel LaBarba MD 15 1932-12-09   Madison Square Garden, New York Retained NBA super featherweight title
Retained NYSAC and The Ring featherweight titles
Win 86–5–1   Johnny Alba PTS 6 1932-11-29   Jamaica Arena, Jamaica, Queens
Win 85–5–1   Eddie Reilly PTS 10 1932-11-21   New York Coliseum, Bronx
Win 84–5–1   Pete Nebo PTS 10 1932-11-14   St. Nicholas Arena, New York
Win 83–5–1   Lew Feldman KO 12 1932-10-13   Madison Square Garden, New York Retained NBA super featherweight title
Won vacant NYSAC and The Ring featherweight titles
Win 82–5–1   Johnny Farr PTS 10 1932-10-04   Olympia Stadium, Detroit
Win 81–5–1   Frank Fariello PTS 6 1932-09-15   Municipal Stadium, Freeport
Win 80–5–1   Steve Smith UD 6 1932-09-06  Fenway Park, Boston
Win 79–5–1   Frankie Marchese KO ? 1932-09-01   Municipal Stadium, Freeport
Win 78–5–1   Johnny Farr PTS 10 1932-08-10   Parkway Arena, Cincinnati
Win 77–5–1   Eddie Shea UD 10 1932-08-04   Chicago Stadium, Chicago Retained NBA super featherweight title
Loss 76–5–1   Jack 'Kid' Berg SD 15 1932-07-18   Madison Square Garden Bowl, Long Island City, Queens
Win 76–4–1   Johnny Farr UD 10 1932-06-22   Meyers Bowl, North Braddock
Win 75–4–1   Roger Bernard PTS 10 1932-06-16   Baker Bowl, Philadelphia
Win 74–4–1   Mike Sarko PTS 10 1932-06-06   Bonacker's Stadium, Rensselaer
Win 73–4–1   Lew Feldman UD 15 1932-06-01   Queensboro Stadium, Long Island City, Queens
Win 72–4–1   Steve Smith PTS 10 1932-05-26   Belmont Park, Garfield
Win 71–4–1   Mike Sarko PTS 10 1932-05-16   St. Nicholas Arena, New York
Win 70–4–1   Davey Abad PTS 15 1932-04-10   Arena Polar, Havana Retained NBA super featherweight title
Win 69–4–1   Dominick Petrone PTS 10 1932-03-06   Old Fronton, Havana
Win 68–4–1   Maxie Leiner KO ? 1931-11-30   St. Nicholas Arena, New York
Loss 67–4–1   Tony Canzoneri SD 15 1931-11-20   Madison Square Garden, New York For NBA and The Ring lightweight titles
For world light welterweight title
Win 67–3–1   Lew Feldman UD 10 1931-11-02   St. Nicholas Arena, New York
Win 66–3–1   Buck Oliva KO ? 1931-10-26   Foot Guard Hall, Hartford
Win 65–3–1   Al 'Rube' Goldberg TKO ? 1931-10-21   Hollywood Arena, Jersey City
Win 64–3–1   Steve Smith PTS 10 1931-10-12   Arena, Trenton
Win 63–3–1   Joey Scalfaro TKO 1 1931-10-01  Queensboro Stadium, Long Island City, Queens Retained NBA and The Ring super featherweight titles
Win 62–3–1   Benny Bass TKO 7 1931-07-15   Shibe Park, Philadelphia Won NBA and The Ring super featherweight titles
Win 61–3–1   Harry Sankey PTS 10 1931-06-29   Woodcliff Park, Poughkeepsie
Win 60–3–1   Maxie Leiner PTS 10 1931-06-17   Bronx Parkway Arena, White Plains
Win 59–3–1   Steve Smith PTS ? 1931-06-12   White City Stadium, West Haven
Win 58–3–1   George Goldberg TKO ? 1931-05-29   Stauch's Arena, Brooklyn
Loss 57–3–1   Battling Battalino UD 15 1930-12-12   Madison Square Garden, New York For NYSAC, The Ring, and lineal featherweight titles
Loss 57–2–1   Fidel LaBarba UD 10 1930-11-03   Madison Square Garden, New York
Win 57–1–1   Mickey Doyle KO ? 1930-10-27   Laurel Garden, Newark
Win 56–1–1   Benny Nabors KO ? 1930-10-16   Olympia Boxing Club, New York
Loss 55–1–1   Jack 'Kid' Berg SD 10 1930-08-07   Polo Grounds, New York
Win 55–0–1   Luigi Quadrini PTS 10 1930-07-15   Queensboro Stadium, Long Island City, Queens
Win 54–0–1   Vic Burrone KO ? 1930-07-10   Broadway Auditorium, Buffalo
Win 53–0–1   Dominick Petrone TKO ? 1930-07-02   Ebbets Field, Brooklyn
Win 52–0–1   Johnny Erickson PTS 10 1930-04-28   Coliseum, Toronto
Win 51–0–1   Al Ridgeway TKO ? 1930-03-21   Madison Square Garden, New York
Win 50–0–1   Benny Hall PTS 10 1930-03-05   Plant Field, Tampa
Win 49–0–1   Vic Burrone PTS 10 1930-02-23   Miramar Garden, Havana
Win 48–0–1   Johnny Lawson KO ? 1929-12-21   Olympia Boxing Club, New York
Win 47–0–1   Dominick Petrone PTS 10 1929-12-18   New York Coliseum, Bronx
Win 46–0–1   Herman Silverberg KO ? 1929-12-10   Uptown Lenox S.C., New York
Win 45–0–1   Eddie O'Dowd KO ? 1929-11-27   St. Nicholas Arena, New York
Win 44–0–1   Jim El Zaird PTS 10 1929-11-19   Broadway Arena, Brooklyn
Win 43–0–1   Johnny Erickson PTS 10 1929-11-09   Olympia Boxing Club, New York
Win 42–0–1   Al Singer SD 12 1929-08-29   Polo Grounds, New York
Win 41–0–1   Tommy Lorenzo TKO ? 1929-08-07   Mitchel Field Arena, Mineola
Win 40–0–1   Steve Smith UD 10 1929-07-30   Mills Stadium, Chicago
Win 39–0–1   Milton Cohen PTS 10 1929-07-19   Playland Stadium, Rockaway Beach, Queens
Win 38–0–1   Ignacio Fernandez PTS 10 1929-07-10   Ebbets Field, Brooklyn
Win 37–0–1   Jackie Johnston KO ? 1929-06-24   Maple Leaf Stadium, Toronto
Win 36–0–1   Terry Roth TKO ? 1929-06-18   Queensboro Stadium, Long Island City, Queens
Win 35–0–1   Gregorio Vidal SD 10 1929-06-05   Shibe Park, Philadelphia
Win 34–0–1   Fidel LaBarba MD ? 1929-05-22   New York Coliseum, Bronx
Win 33–0–1   Steve Smith UD 10 1929-05-07   Kingston Armory, Kingston
Win 32–0–1   Tommy Ryan KO ? 1929-04-29   Broadway Arena, Brooklyn
Win 31–0–1   Vic Burrone UD 10 1929-04-22   St. Nicholas Arena, New York
Win 30–0–1   Bushy Graham DQ 7 1929-04-12   New York Coliseum, Bronx
Win 29–0–1   Johnny Vacca TKO ? 1929-03-22   Boston Garden, Boston
Win 28–0–1   Al Rackow KO ? 1929-03-18   Broadway Auditorium, Buffalo
Win 27–0–1   Phil O'Dowd KO ? 1929-03-09   Olympia Boxing Club, New York
Win 26–0–1   Chick Suggs UD 10 1929-02-24   Nuevo Fronton, Havana Won vacant Colored featherweight title
Win 25–0–1   Pancho Dencio TKO ? 1928-12-22   Olympia Boxing Club, New York
Win 24–0–1   Emil Paluso TKO ? 1928-12-17   St. Nicholas Arena, New York
Win 23–0–1   Johnny Helstein PTS 10 1928-12-10   Broadway Auditorium, Buffalo
Draw 22–0–1   Joey Scalfaro PTS 10 1928-11-30   Madison Square Garden, New York
Win 22–0   Pinky May TKO 6 1928-11-24   Olympia Boxing Club, New York
Win 21–0   Jackie Schweitzer KO ? 1928-11-19   St. Nicholas Arena, New York
Win 20–0   Pinky Silverberg PTS 8 1928-11-08   St. Nicholas Arena, New York
Win 19–0   Frisco Grande TKO ? 1928-11-03   Olympia Boxing Club, New York
Win 18–0   Joey Ross KO ? 1928-10-29   St. Nicholas Arena, New York
Win 17–0   Eddie O'Dowd PTS 10 1928-10-10   Manhattan Casino, New York
Win 16–0   Johnny Erickson PTS 10 1928-10-01   St. Nicholas Arena, New York
Win 15–0   Sammy Tisch PTS 10 1928-09-17   St. Nicholas Arena, New York
Win 14–0   Mike Castle TKO 3 1928-08-31   Fort Hamilton Arena, Brooklyn
Win 13–0   Nick Mercer KO ? 1928-08-25   Ridgewood Grove, Brooklyn
Win 12–0   Johnny Green KO ? 1928-08-15   Mitchel Field Arena, Mineola
Win 11–0   Nick DeSalvo PTS 8 1928-07-25   Mitchel Field Arena, Mineola
Win 10–0   Eddie Enos TKO ? 1928-07-11   Mitchel Field Arena, Mineola
Win 9–0   Pablo Blanco KO ? 1928-06-16   Arena Colon, Havana
Win 8–0   Jose 'Joe' Castillo PTS 6 1928-06-04   Havana
Win 7–0   Kid Saguita TKO ? 1928-05-14   Gran Stadium, Camaguey
Win 6–0   Clemente 'Remache' Morales TKO ? 1928-04-07   Arena Colon, Havana
Win 5–0   Angel Diaz KO ? 1928-03-10   Arena Colon, Havana
Win 4–0   Kid Sotolongo KO ? 1928-03-03   Arena Colon, Havana
Win 3–0   Johnny Cruz KO ? 1928-03-03   Arena Colon, Havana
Win 2–0   Jose 'Joe' Castillo PTS 6 1927-12-17   Miramar Garden, Havana
Win 1–0   Johnny Cruz UD 6 1927-10-22   Nuevo Fronton, Havana Professional Debut

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ "Kid Chocolate - Lineal Jr. Lightweight Champion". The Cyber Boxing Zone Encyclopedia.
  2. ^ "Young Frankie Klick Holds Junior Lightweight Title", Ludington Daily News, Ludington, Michigan, pg. 6, 26 December 1933
  3. ^ "Frankie Klick Takes Junior Lightweight Crown", Belvidere Daily Republican, Belvidere, Illinois, pg. 6, 26 December 1933
  4. ^
  5. ^ "Kid Chocolate– Boxer". Retrieved April 1, 2019.

External linksEdit

Preceded by
Benny Bass
World junior lightweight champion
July 15, 1931 – December 25, 1933
Succeeded by
Frankie Klick