37-year old Arturo "Thunder" Gatti, the Canadian brawler who became the adopted son of New Jersey's Boardwalk Hall and one of the most memorable, gritty, and exciting action fighters of his era, has reportedly been found dead in a condo he was renting in Brazil.
Gatti is best-known for his epic trilogy with "Irish" Micky Ward, and also for his valiant, overmatched efforts against the likes of Floyd Mayweather Jr. and Oscar de la Hoya. His career was one to be fondly remembered, and it will be. He made a lot of fans simply because he fought his guts out every single time he was in the ring. I say with all praise that he was a tremendously limited fighter who made himself a world titlist and a name in this sport because of his courage as a fighter and his willpower to keep fighting and fighting until he had nothing more to give.
Early reports are that the death could be a homicide, as Gatti's wife, Amanda, reportedly found him dead in the condo when she woke up today, and it appeared he had been struck in the back of the head.
I really don't have the proper words right now, because this comes as quite a shock, obviously. We'll have a lot more on Arturo Gatti's career and this horrible tragedy.
Some quick stuff posted in the past at BLH:
The first-ever BLH proper "LiveBlog," which has changed over time and become our RBR was Baldomir-Gatti. It's notable for how bad I was at RBR, and for the SBN servers being funky and having to post rounds one through seven at once. That was the first time I had a bunch of folks over for a fight at my old apartment, too. It wasn't the best Gatti fight, but everyone had a good time.
Update by SC (5:56 PM ET): The Associated Press is now reporting Gatti's death, with some quotes from the scene:
Update by SC (9:13 PM ET): Gatti's wife, Amanda Rodrigues, is a suspect in what now appears to be Gatti's murder. She is innocent until proven guilty, but police said her testimony had inconsistencies.
"There were no bullet or stab wounds on his body, but police did find blood stains on the floor," she said, adding that his wife and son were unhurt.
The spokeswoman, who did not provide further details, declined to be identified because she was not authorized to comment on the case.