Gans took the first two rounds with his boxing skills but it was Duran who nearly ended the fight in the 3rd round as he finally caught up to Gans and staggered him with an uppercut before dropping him for an 8 count with a powerful right cross that also caused the left eye of Gans to start swelling up. Gans barely survived the round when Duran could not land that one final shot that surely would have ended it.
The 4th was fought on even terms but in the 5th, a sweet left hook from Gans staggered Duran and Gans appeared to take back control. In the 6th, Duran began to get rough with Gans and he opened a bad gash over his left eye with a punch. Between the swelling and the cut, Duran was finding it easier to connect with his power punches and control the fight. The referee took a look at Gans' eye between the 6th and 7th round, ruling that Gans was fit to continue. In the 9th round, a stinging left jab from Gans started a trickle of blood from the nose of Duran. In the 10th, a small cut under the right eye of Gans began to develop. Going into the 11th, Gans was behind on two of the three official cards and so he really turned on the gas in the 11th, outboxing and outpunching Duran with precision shots. Towards the end of the 12th, a round that Duran had controlled despite beginning to show signs of fatigue, a monster left hook from Gans put Duran on the seat of his pants for a 7 count.
Gans then swept the championship rounds to win a competitive majority decision, despite the fact that Duran reopened the bad gash over Gans' left eye in the 14th round.
Result: Joe Gans W15 Roberto Duran
Official Scores: 145-139 & 144-140 Gans, and 141-141 Even.