James Quinn McDonagh – The Irish bare-knuckle boxing king

Irish bare-knuckle boxing originates from England but has been adopted by many European countries. Its meaning is synonymous with its name. Unlike in the other types of boxing, the fighters don’t use gloves for protection. Bare-knuckle boxing can also be called fistfight and it is very similar to street fighting. However, the difference between these two types of boxing is that fist fighting has a set of rules that guides  the game. 

The way the game is played in recent times has attracted a lot of fans, who also get to bet on their favorite fighter. Betting can be considered as a form of shout out to support your favourite fighter, and sites like www.bestbettingsites.ie can provide you with enough information to choose the perfect bookmaker. Finding the best site to place your bets is essential to get favorable odds that suit you. It also helps you compare the betting site you use with others and sometimes even find a better one to bet at. It’s a similar scenario when choosing homecare solutions for people.

Bare-knuckle boxing champions come and go and the world has seen a fair share of them. One of the well-known champions was James Quinn McDonagh, who took the game of bare-knuckle boxing to a whole new level. He was called the king of travelers. The word “travelers” is used because ancient bare-knuckle fighters were travelers who used this sport to dispute settlement. The term has stuck to the profession ever since then. It is pretty rare to see a professional win every game they have been involved in. McDonagh surprises fans by taking home the win in all his eleven fights. His popularity increased even more, when he was involved in a controversial confrontation that led to the death of a man.

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Facts about James Quinn McDonagh

  • Early and personal life: McDonagh was born in Ireland in 1967. He was an amateur boxer in Ireland before he found his calling bare-knuckle boxing. The Irish bare-knuckle fighter lived his early life like others of his kind. He chose boxing to help the community curb bullying incidents within and it the outskirts. He left home in 1983 as a sixteen-year-old to England. He went alongside his family because he had been involved in a physical altercation with a man that led to his death. When they noticed that the uproar the act had caused had quietened down a little, they had returned to Dublin. After returning, he continued his life as a knuckle boxer. 

He didn’t know that the feud ensued after the man’s death wasn’t over. The violence that came afterward was unexpected and earthshaking. James was attacked by some men, which led to a huge fight. The fight left some men dead, injured, and even burnt down some houses. In all the crises, James was also involved because he was shot. Thankfully, it wasn’t a shot that would kill him. After being sent to the hospital to extract the bullet, he had to leave Ireland for fear of his life. He is married with two children and a grandchild.

  • Professional life: McDonagh has been involved in eleven professional fights. He has had eleven wins out of the eleven fights. Outside his professional fights, he had also had battles that he engaged in for large sums of money. He lives up to the name of “boxing king” because he won every fight, no matter how big or small. The most prolonged battle McDonagh has engaged in is a fight that lasted for almost three hours. Precisely, two hours and forty-seven minutes. A long struggle should include breaks, so the fighters do not wear out before the next round. However, this fight didn’t. McDonagh was challenged to fight his opponent till the end of the battle. There was only one round to fight and finish.

Large sums of money were always involved in the fight. However, the exact amount of money made by him for each fight is unknown. There have been many successes in his career. Some of which are his establishment of the first legal bare-knuckle fight in the UK and setting up a TV show called bare-knuckle wars. He has gained recognition over the years and is allowed more venues than before. 


James McDonagh’s passion for eradicating bullying has greatly influenced bare-knuckle boxing. Although he believes that though he has retired, his works still speak for themselves. His prowess in his expertise led a producer to see how much his talent would be helpful in a related movie. He starred in Knuckle’s film in 2011, which gained global recognition. He played the role of a knuckle fighter. 

The publicity of the movie made his reputation and popularity skyrocket. It is not clear the level of wealth he might have amassed for himself and his family, but it is clear that no matter the level, he still chooses to stay humble. Presently, he has not been involved in any outdoor fights. He lives a peaceful life with his family.


Integral part of the Irish boxing community for over 13 years