International Boxing Hall of Fame
|Olympic medal record|
|Gold||1952 Helsinki||Light middleweight|
|Gold||1956 Melbourne||Light middleweight|
László Papp (March 25, 1926 – October 16, 2003) was a Hungarian boxer, born in 1926, in Budapest. He won gold medals in the 1948 Summer Olympics in London, the 1952 Summer Olympics, in Helsinki and the 1956 Summer Olympics held in Melbourne, Australia. In his final Olympic competition, he beat José Torres for the gold medal, to become the first boxer in Olympic history to win three successive gold medals.
Papp was an Olympic gold medalist three times, at middleweight in London in 1948, then as a light middleweight in Helsinki in 1952 and in Melbourne in 1956. Papp also was the European middleweight champion as a middleweight in 1949 at Oslo and at light middleweight at Milan 1951. He scored 55 first round knockouts as an amateur.
1948 London (England)
1952 Helsinki (Finland)
1956 Melbourne (Australia)
Papp, despite having hand trouble, turned professional in 1957, and immediately began rising in the Middleweight ranks. However, Hungary was a Communist country at the time and professional boxing was not permitted. Papp had to travel to Vienna, in Austria, for training and for his fights. In spite of this disadvantage, he beat several top-ranking contenders for the European Middleweight title, including veteran Tiger Jones and Chris Christensen. After Christensen, Papp defeated Randy Sandy of the United States. In 1964, after Papp had already signed up for the world championship title bout, Hungary's Communist leadership brought his professional career to an end by denying him an exit visa. The reason for this was that professional boxing was not permitted in Communist Hungary and the government resented Papp's successful by-passing of the restriction by staging his fights abroad.
Papp was undefeated in the ring. His fighting record was 27 wins, 2 draws, and no losses. 15 of his wins were with knockouts.
László Papp died in Budapest in 2003.
Papp was inducted into the
International Boxing Hall Of Fame
1989 WBC President
gave Papp an award for 'Best amateur and professional boxer of
all time' and granted him honorary champion status of the
World Boxing Council.
Budapest's Papp Laszlo Sportaréna, a multipurpose building best known as a concert venue and the home ice of the Hungarian national hockey team, is named in his honor.