March 18, 1932 -- It must have been the biggest night in the life of George Nichols of Buffalo. How often does a boxer get to become a champion?
This was such a night. Nichols earned a 10-round decision of Dave Maier in Chicago. It was good to give Nichols the NBA light-heavyweight championship.
The sophomore started his career in his native Sandusky, Ohio, in 1921. It took 11 years before he earned a title shot in Chicago Stadium. Nichols went down in the second round, but rallied to earn a split verdict from the judges.
Nichols apparently made one mistake at that point. He fought five times in the next seven months, including once in Broadway Auditorium in Buffalo, but they were always non-title bouts. Good thing -- he lost four of those fights. Then the NBA took away his title for not defending it.
Nichols finished his career 82-32-11. He was part of the first class ever inducted into the Buffalo Boxing Hall of Fame (1997).
--- Budd Bailey