Jake LaMotta, the former middleweight boxing champion who was portrayed in the Martin Scorsese film “Raging Bull,” has died at the age of 95, his family announced on Wednesday.
LaMotta, known for a legendary six-fight rivalry with Sugar Ray Robinson, passed away on Tuesday, his daughter Christi LaMotta said on Facebook.
Sports Illustrated said he died from complications from pneumonia.
In a career spanning 1941 to 1954, LaMotta racked up a record of 83 victories, 30 of them knockouts, against 19 defeats, according to BoxRec, which keeps boxing statistics.
On June 16, 1949, he scored a knockout win over French boxer Marcel Cerdan to capture the middleweight title. After two successful defenses, he lost the belt in 1952 in his sixth bout against Sugar Ray Robinson.
LaMotta’s turmoil-filled life—marked by a fixed match he deliberately lost under Mafia pressure in 1947 -- was depicted in the 1980 movie “Raging Bull, in which he was portrayed in an Academy Award-winning performance by Robert De Niro.
“I’m proud that my Father was a great athlete, he lost his title to one of the best Middleweight Boxers in history, Sugar Ray Robinson,” his daughter wrote on Facebook.
“When he took a dive during the Billy Fox fight, which he didn’t want to do, it literally broke him & was never the same afterwards,” she added.