Archive for January, 2012

13
Jan
12

Boxer Pacquiao calls Mayweather’s bluff

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MANILA, Phillipines, January 12 – Manny Pacquiao on Thursday accepted US rival Floyd Mayweather’s provocative challenge for a showdown of the world’s top pound-for-pound boxers, though sticking points to the mega fight remain.

The unbeaten Mayweather dared the Philippine icon this week on Twitter to “Step up Punk”, attempting to entice Pacquiao into a May 5 bout in Las Vegas, a fight that boxing fans have wanted to see for years.

Mayweather and Pacquiao, 33, previously saw a fight derailed by the US fighter’s demands about blood testing, with both boxers accusing the other of running scared.

“I want to fight him. This is the fight the world wants,” Pacquiao declared at a news conference in the Philippines with his US promoter Bob Arum.

Pacquiao, 54-3 with two draws and 38 knockouts, said if the 34-year-old Mayweather, 42-0 with 26 knockouts, can find a promoter who would give him a guaranteed purse, the fight would be on.

Arum said he favours a showdown in late May and previously told the Los Angeles Times he could secure $40 million more with the construction of a temporary venue in Las Vegas before more than twice as many spectators.

“Mayweather wants a guaranteed purse so what he has to do is get a promoter who can give him the guarantee,” Pacquiao said. “I don’t have problems getting a guarantee because I have a promoter who will give me my guaranteed purse.”

“If he gets a guarantee, then we are going to share the revenue on a 50-50 basis,” Pacquiao added, referring to the money raised from pay-per-view television, gate and broadcast rights.

Arum added: “There is no problem on our part — the problem is on Mayweather’s.

“Mayweather needs somebody on his side that’s going to guarantee his purse. Mayweather has nobody on his side and GBP (Oscar de la Hoya’s Golden Boy Promotions) is not going to guarantee his purse.”

Arum insisted that if there was to be no fight in late May against the American then he would move forward with a Pacquiao clash on June 9 against someone else.

He listed a re-match against Mexico’s Juan Manuel Marquez or Puerto Rican southpaw Miguel Cotto, as well as Americans Tim Bradley and Lamont Peterson, as potential alternatives.

Arum had originally said that Mayweather was not on Pacquiao’s hit-list.

Pacquiao, a southpaw, won a majority decision over Marquez in November to keep his World Boxing Organisation welterweight title.

Mayweather, who turns 35 next month, won the World Boxing Council welterweight title with a fourth-round knockout of compatriot Victor Ortiz.

But he is currently awaiting the June 1 start of a 90-day jail sentence on domestic violence charges, further complicating things.

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13
Jan
12

Mayweather calls out Pacquiao for May

Floyd Mayweather Jr. could not be any clearer about the opponent he wants to fight on May 5 at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas.

Mayweather wants Manny Pacquiao — at least, if you are to believe his tweets on Tuesday afternoon.

Several hours after tweeting a photo of a betting slip from a Las Vegas casino for a $400,000 win on Monday night’s Allstate BCS Championship Game, Mayweather sent out two tweets calling out and antagonizing Pacquiao.

 

Mayweather Manny Pacquiao I’m calling you out let’s fight May 5th and give the world what they want to see.

— Floyd Mayweather Jr., on Twitter

 

“Manny Pacquiao I’m calling you out let’s fight May 5th and give the world what they want to see,” read Mayweather’s first tweet.

One minute later, Mayweather followed with this: “My Jail Sentence was pushed back because the date was locked in. Step up Punk.”

Pacquiao’s promoter, Top Rank’s Bob Arum, told The Los Angeles Times that Pacquiao will fight Mayweather, but not on May 5.

“June 9 is perfect,” Arum told The Times from The Philippines where he is meeting with Pacquiao to talk about his next opponent. “May 5 is out, that’s impossible.”

Mayweather’s upcoming jail sentence however, complicates the issue.

Mayweather was due to report to the Clark County Detention Center in Las Vegas last Friday to begin an 87-day sentence. He pleaded guilty to a reduced battery domestic violence charge and no contest to two harassment charges, stemming from a hair-pulling, punching and arm-twisting argument with his ex-girlfriend in front of two of their children.

However, Mayweather’s attorney successfully argued that the sentence should be delayed until June 1 so he could fulfill a contractual obligation for a fight at the MGM Grand, which he estimated would pour more than $100 million into the ailing Las Vegas economy.

Arum told The Times that he would be “willing to chip in for lawyers’ fees” to get Mayweather’s report date moved to allow the fight to happen on June 9.

Leonard Ellerbe, one of Mayweather’s advisers, told ESPN.com that Mayweather was serious about calling out Pacquiao.

“You heard him,” Ellerbe said, noting that Mayweather is personally responsible for the content of the tweets sent from his verified account.

So Mayweather is now free until June 1 and intends to fight May 5. However, he is without a dance partner.

 

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Rafael Get the latest scoop and analysis on the world of boxing from ESPN.com’s Dan Rafael in his blog.

 

The two names most often mentioned as potential opponents are junior middleweight titlist Saul “Canelo” Alvarez — who is one division above Mayweather, the welterweight titlist — and lightweight Robert Guerrero, who is two divisions below.

Alvarez and Guerrero are being named as likely opponents because they would be fairly easy deals to make. They are both promoted by Golden Boy, which has served as Mayweather’s de facto promoter in recent years, promoting his last five bouts even though they do not have a formal promotional contract.

However, a fight between Mayweather and fellow welterweight champion and pound-for-pound star Pacquiao looms as the biggest fight in the sport — and likely the richest fight in boxing history. There seems to be no legitimate impediment to making the match for May 5, Arum has not seemed interested previously.

When Mayweather was supposed to go to jail last week, Arum talked about Pacquiao fighting on May 5 to take the spot of Mayweather. The next day, when Mayweather’s sentence was delayed, Arum said Pacquiao would probably have to fight in June, blaming that on a cut Pacquiao suffered in his November majority decision win against Juan Manuel Marquez as the reason — even though a cut taking more than six months to heal is unheard of.

Arum’s list of possible opponents for Pacquiao did not include Mayweather. Rather, it includes a rematch with junior middleweight titlist Miguel Cotto, whom Pacquiao stopped in the 12th round of a 2009 welterweight title bout; Marquez, for a fourth time; or a fight with junior welterweight titleholders Lamont Peterson or Timothy Bradley Jr.

After Mayweather’s sentence was delayed, Arum said he was not interested in talking to Pacquiao about fighting Mayweather in May.

“We’re fighting in June, one of the four guys,” Arum told ESPN.com last week. “My mission is to go over to the Philippines and talk about these four guys. If Manny feels he wants to go in May, he will tell me. I want to make sure Manny’s cuts are healed. We won’t fall under this kind of pressure. June is much more likely for Manny’s fight, not May.”

Arum also said he was concerned that Mayweather might not be licensed by the Nevada State Athletic Commission with a conviction hanging over his head and jail time slated for June.

“I don’t even know if Mayweather will be licensed before he serves his time,” Arum said.

Although Mayweather is likely to be ordered to a hearing before the commission because of his conviction before it will license him for a May 5 fight, it is likely the commission will license him. After all, the judge in Mayweather’s criminal case was swayed by the economic impact of a Mayweather fight on the Las Vegas economy as one of the reasons for the delay. It is hard to imagine the commission, all political appointees, denying Mayweather a license for a fight that would bring the local economy millions of dollars.

Dan Rafael is the boxing writer for ESPN.com. Follow him on Twitter.

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12
Jan
12

‘Mystery man’ is IBF official, Schaefer calls for re-match or for fight to be declared a no-contest

Image text here

Amir Khan: lost his titles on a controversial points decision…

Amir Khan’s promoters Golden Boy have revealed that the ‘mystery man’ spotted ringside during his controversial defeat to Lamont Peterson last month is an IBF official.

Confusion has surrounded the identity of the man, whom video footage shows talking to WBA fight supervisor Michael Welsh as he appears to point out something on a scorecard.

Khan lost his IBF and WBA light-welterweight titles to Peterson on points last month in Washington DC but is appealing against the decision.

On Thursday he highlighted photos and video footage showing the presence of a man appearing to interfere with the WBA’s supervisor and handling the scorecards.

The World Boxing Association announced on Friday that they do not know the identity of the man, prompting the organisation’s vice-president to call for a re-match.

But Golden Boy chief executive Richard Shaefer told Sky Sports News the man is an IBF official – although he was not assigned to the Khan-Peterson fight which was sanctioned by both governing bodies.

Shocking

Shaefer has called for an immediate re-match or for the fight to be declared a no-contest.

Schaefer refused to name the man, saying he had been advised not to do so by lawyers, but claimed the footage was “astonishing and shocking”.

The Golden Boy chief executive said the man was an IBF official, but not one assigned to the fight and claimed he should not have been ringside.

“The right thing to do is declare a no-contest. There’s enough controversy to warrant a no-contest decision,” he said.

“In any case, both governing bodies should order a re-match and the fighters can settle things in the ring.”

It has also been claimed the man has been pictured celebrating with the Peterson camp after the fight, something Schaefer described as “unusual” and leaves “question marks”.

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12
Jan
12

Manny Pacquiao Vs Floyd Mayweather Jr. Fight is on!

I’m ready to put my belt up. What about you Manny Pacquiao? Let’s make history.

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11
Jan
12

Manny Pacquiao to try to force Mayweather fight: I want Floyd next

Top Rank Boxing promoter Bob Arum’s alleged unwillingness to pit his welterweight attraction Manny Pacquiao, against undefeated pay-per-view sensation Floyd Mayweather, may be negated by the Filipino fighter himself, as Pacquiao has told the press that his American rival is his most desired opponent for his next pugilistic outing. Manny added that he and Arum are due to meet as early as tomorrow, Tuesday, to discuss his summer fight.

Pacquiao and the band-aid covering a 28-stitch cut

“I’ve said this over and over before and I’m saying this again,I want Floyd Mayweather Jr to be my next opponent and I haven’t changed my choice despite recent developments,” said Pacquiao, as quoted by Phil Boxing.

A showdown between Pacquiao (54-3-2, 38ko) and Mayweather (42-0-0, 26ko) would not only represent a welterweight unification contest for the WBO and WBC world titles, it would also decide whom the true pound-for-pound best prizefighter currently is.

The prospective bout is expected to far surpass the records for gate receipts and PPV purchases and, as such, Arum wants to maximise earnings for his fighter as much as possible.

So much so, that the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, which seats 18,000, is deemed to be too small a stage and the experienced promoter, instead, would favour the construction of a temporary stadium to be built on the city’s famous strip.

Mayweather had already reserved the date of May 5 to box at the MGM Grand, yet his own participation was jeopardised due to an imminent 87-day imprisonment for domestic violence charges, however, Mayweather’s lawyer was successful in having the sentence postponed due to the obligation to fight.

The May date was deemed too early by Arum, who – following consultation with a plastic surgeon – claimed Pacquiao would need further time to recover from a 28-stitch cut sustained during his most recent clash with proud Mexican warrior Juan Manuel Marquez.

Arum was believed to favour the four options of Top Rank super lightweight Timothy Bradley, three division world champion Miguel Cotto who is expected to continue being represented by Top Rank on a fight by fight basis, Marquez who has boxed Pacman three times and feels he deserved victory in each and every contest and, finally, Lamont Peterson – the unified champion of the WBA/IBF titles at 140lbs.

The Mayweather option has not been completely discarded by Arum, as he reportedly would consider aligning Pac with Floyd if the date was pushed to the end of May or even in June, however, Mayweather is expected to turn himself in to the prison authorities by June 1.

“I am meeting with my promoter, Bob Arum on Tuesday and I will insist that the fight with Mayweather be given the preference than the four others in the list I will fight next,” concluded Pacquiao.

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11
Jan
12

Floyd Mayweather officially calls out Manny Pacquiao: Step up punk

Floyd Mayweather Jr has laid down the gauntlet. The undefeated 34-year-old has challenged welterweight rival Manny Pacquiao to follow through with his recent statements and agree to a fight later this year, on the date – May 5 – and venue – MGM Grand Garden Arena, Las Vegas – that had already been reserved by Mayweather late last year. “Step up punk,” Floyd intonated on his social media networks earlier today, Tuesday.

A Mayweather v Pacquiao match-up would be a tri-belt bout. Credit: Stacey Verbeek – Maple Avenue Boxing Gym, Dallas

The boxing and wider sporting world has demanded a showdown between prizefighting’s two most notable names for years and is one Mayweather (42-0-0, 26ko) and his camp have publicly been pursuing since Floyd’s first gear, fourth round dismissal of former WBC welterweight world champion Victor Ortiz, in September, 2011.

Legal troubles had threatened the lucrative fisticuffs from happening this year as the libel case leveled against Floyd, by Manny, for defaming Pacquiao’s character by insinuating the foundations of the Filipino’s success had been down to ‘power pellets’ (performance enhancing drugs), combined with Mayweather’s mounting domestic violence charge that had culminated with an 87-day imprisonment, appeared to push a contest back that had already twice failed at the negotiation table.

However, Mayweather’s lawyer, just last week, had succeeded in delaying his client’s jail sentence until June so that Floyd could honour his obligation to fight in May.

All he needs is a dance partner.

Robert Guerrero has been lobbying for a shot at the fight game’s biggest draw and it was rumoured over the weekend that the California-resident had the edge over his closest rival for Cinco de Mayo with Mayweather – Saul ‘Canelo’ Alvarez.

Both fighters, though, may have to wait. Mayweather, as per his latest comments, appears to have only one candidate in mind.

“Manny Pacquiao I’m calling you out; let’s fight [on] May 5th and give the world what they want to see,” said the current incumbent of the WBC championship at 147lbs.

Pacquiao (54-3-2, 38ko), who holds the WBO title, has entered discussions with his promoter Bob Arum of Top Rank Boxing over whom he most wants to fight next. There had been four candidates to be presented to him: Miguel Cotto, Juan Manuel Marquez, Timothy Bradley or Lamont Peterson, yet Pacquiao claimed yesterday that he would reject them all in order to accommodate a match-up with Mayweather.

“My jail sentence was pushed back because the date was locked in,” continued Mayweather, before sending a direct message to Pacman: “Step up punk.”

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11
Jan
12

Muhammad Ali Home from Hospital after Losing Consciousness

December 2, 2011

*Muhammad Ali is back home and recuperating after he was hospitalized last month in Arizona, the Louisville Courier-Journal reports.

The paper spoke with Ali’s close friend and Louisville radio personality John Ramsey, after Ramsey told Star magazine that the boxing icon had been hospitalized “after slipping out of consciousness at his Phoenix-area home.”

Ramsey said he spoke by telephone with Ali’s wife, Lonnie, last night and was told Ali is “home and well, for a person who has had Parkison’s since the 1980s. He may not be going in the direction you or I like, but no one is on alert. That’s the truth.”

Ramsey said the Alis still plan to be in Louisville in mid-January for a celebration of the three-time heavyweight champion’s 70th birthday, Jan. 19.

Ramsey said he didn’t have any details of Ali’s hospital treatment but that he believed, “I don’t think he stayed very long,” Ramsey said.

The Star reported that it had been told by multiple sources that Ali was rushed from the couple’s home in Paradise Valley to the Scottsdale Healthcare Osborn Medical Center on Nov. 19. The Star also said it confirmed a 911 call from the residence, and that Ali was unconscious at the time.

The Star quoted Alan Laitsich, a spokesperson for Paradise Valley Police, saying: “The victim started to pass out in the car and when they got him into the house he fell unconscious.”

The magazine said it didn’t have details of Ali’s treatment or his length of stay at the hospital.

The Nov. 19 rush to the hospital came just five days after Ali attended the funeral of his greatest rival, Joe Frazier. Another boxer who fought Ali for the heavyweight title, Ron Lyle, died Saturday at the age of 70.

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11
Jan
12

Ali returning home to Louisville for 70th birthday

LOUISVILLE (AP) – Muhammad Ali is coming home to celebrate another milestone — his 70th birthday.

The iconic heavyweight boxing champion will bask in the limelight once again at a private birthday bash on the evening of Jan. 14 at the Muhammad Ali Center in downtown Louisville. Ali turns 70 on Jan. 17. The party will double as a fundraiser for the center — a cultural and education center that also features a museum focusing on Ali’s long career as a boxer, social activist and humanitarian.

Ali Center spokeswoman Jeanie Kahnke said on Saturday that Ali will be surrounded by old friends and people who made a difference in his life, including his longtime trainer Angelo Dundee. The party will feature a dinner, entertainment and speeches.

She described it as a “retrospective look and celebration” of Ali’s life.

“It’s significant for anyone to turn 70 years old,” Kahnke said. “But for such a global icon, who has literally touched the lives of millions of people, it’s a momentous event to celebrate.”

A few tickets remained available for the $1,000-per-person event, she said.

Kahnke said that Ali and his wife, Lonnie, are looking forward to returning for the celebration. The Alis have a residence in Louisville but have recently been staying at their home in Arizona, she said. Ali is battling Parkinson’s disease.

A series of community events — titled “Seven Days for Seven Decades” — will be offered from Jan. 15-21 at the center, touching on both the serious and fun sides of Ali.

The events include a “compassion fair” and workshops focusing on examples of compassion throughout the world. An exhibit will delve into the lives of people with dual African American and Native American ancestries. There will be screenings of films based on Ali’s life.

On Jan. 15, a magician will perform in the center’s main lobby — a recognition of Ali’s love of magic tricks. Also, people visiting the center during that week will receive a discounted admission for bringing non-perishable food items for a food bank.

“We really want to thank the community that has supported and loved and embraced Muhammad,” Kahnke said.

The center opened in 2005 and draws about 85,000 visitors a year.

Ali, who began his boxing career as an amateur in Louisville in the 1950s, won a gold medal in boxing in 1960 at the Rome Olympics. He went on to become a three-time world heavyweight champion. He first won the title by defeating Sonny Liston in 1964. Ali was then stripped of his boxing title in 1967 for refusing to be drafted for military service during the Vietnam War.

He regained the title in 1974 when he defeated George Foreman in Zaire. Ali’s last title came in 1978 when he defeated Leon Spinks. Ali had three epic fights against his chief rival, Joe Frazier.

Copyright 2012 The Associated Press.
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09
Jan
12

Joe Frazier loses battle with liver cancer

The Associated Press Nov 7, 2011 – 11:30 PM ET | Last Updated: Nov 8, 2011 9:17 AM ET

Will Burgess/Reuters

Will Burgess/Reuters

Smokin’ Joe Frazier was a small yet ferocious fighter who smothered his opponents with punches, including a devastating left hook he used to end many of his fights early.

  •  By Dan Gelston
  • PHILADELPHIA — He beat Muhammad Ali in the Fight of the Century, battled him nearly to the death in the Thrilla in Manila. Then Joe Frazier spent the rest of his life trying to fight his way out of Ali’s shadow.

    That was one fight Frazier never could win. He was once a heavyweight champion, and a great one at that. Ali would say as much after Frazier knocked him down in the 15th round en route to becoming the first man to beat Ali at Madison Square Garden in March 1971.

    But he bore the burden of being Ali’s foil, and he paid the price. Bitter for years about the taunts his former nemesis once threw his way, Frazier only in recent times came to terms with what happened in the past and said he had forgiven Ali for everything he said.

    AFP/Getty Images

    A picture taken on March 8, 1971 shows US heavyweight boxing champion Joe Frazier (background) keeping his title at the end of the fight called the “match of the century” against his compatriot Muhammad Ali at the Madison Square Garden, in New York

    Frazier, who died Monday night after a brief battle with liver cancer at the age of 67, will forever be linked to Ali. But no one in boxing would ever dream of anointing Ali as The Greatest unless he, too, was linked to Smokin’ Joe.

    “You can’t mention Ali without mentioning Joe Frazier,” said former AP boxing writer Ed Schuyler Jr. “He beat Ali, don’t forget that.”

    They fought three times, twice in the heart of New York City and once in the morning in a steamy arena in the Philippines. They went 41 rounds together, with neither giving an inch and both giving it their all.

    In their last fight in Manila in 1975, they traded punches with a fervor that seemed unimaginable among heavyweights. Frazier gave almost as good as he got for 14 rounds, then had to be held back by trainer Eddie Futch as he tried to go out for the final round, unable to see.

    “Closest thing to dying that I know of,” Ali said afterward.

    Ali was as merciless with Frazier out of the ring as he was inside it. He called him a gorilla, and mocked him as an Uncle Tom. But he respected him as a fighter, especially after Frazier won a decision to defend his heavyweight title against the then-unbeaten Ali in a fight that was so big Frank Sinatra was shooting pictures at ringside and both fighters earned an astonishing US$2.5-million.

    The night at the Garden 40 years ago remained fresh in Frazier’s mind as he talked about his life, career and relationship with Ali a few months before he died.

    “I can’t go nowhere where it’s not mentioned,” he told The Associated Press. “That was the greatest thing that ever happened in my life.”

    Bob Arum, who once promoted Ali, said he was saddened by Frazier’s passing.

    “He was such an inspirational guy. A decent guy. A man of his word,” Arum said. “I’m torn up by Joe dying at this relatively young age. I can’t say enough about Joe.”

    Frazier’s death was announced in a statement by his family, who asked to be able to grieve privately and said they would announce “our father’s homecoming celebration” as soon as possible.

    Manny Pacquiao learned of it shortly after he arrived in Las Vegas for his fight Saturday night with Juan Manuel Marquez. Like Frazier in his prime, Pacquiao has a powerful left hook that he has used in his remarkable run to stardom.

    REUTERS/Ray Stubblebine/Files

    Muhammad Ali and Joe Frazier (R) talk moments before the 2002 NBA All-Star game at the Philadelphia Convention Center in this February 10, 2002

    “Boxing lost a great champion, and the sport lost a great ambassador,” Pacquiao said.

    Don King, who promoted the Thrilla in Manila, was described by a spokesman as too upset to talk about Frazier’s death.

    Though slowed in his later years and his speech slurred by the toll of punches taken in the ring, Frazier was still active on the autograph circuit in the months before he died. In September he went to Las Vegas, where he signed autographs in the lobby of the MGM Grand hotel-casino shortly before Floyd Mayweather Jr.’s fight against Victor Ortiz.

    An old friend, Gene Kilroy, visited with him and watched Frazier work the crowd.

    “He was so nice to everybody,” Kilroy said. “He would say to each of them, ‘Joe Frazier, sharp as a razor, what’s your name?’ ”

    Frazier was small for a heavyweight, weighing just 205 pounds when he won the title by stopping Jimmy Ellis in the fifth round of their 1970 fight at Madison Square Garden. But he fought every minute of every round going forward behind a vicious left hook, and there were few fighters who could withstand his constant pressure.

    His reign as heavyweight champion lasted only four fights — including the win over Ali — before he ran into an even more fearsome slugger than himself. George Foreman responded to Frazier’s constant attack by dropping him three times in the first round and three more in the second before their 1973 fight in Jamaica was waved to a close and the world had a new heavyweight champion.

    Two fights later, he met Ali in a rematch of their first fight, only this time the outcome was different. Ali won a 12-round decision, and later that year stopped George Foreman in the Rumble in the Jungle in Zaire.

    There had to be a third fight, though, and what a fight it was. With Ali’s heavyweight title at stake, the two met in Manila in a fight that will long be seared in boxing history.

    Frazier went after Ali round after round, landing his left hook with regularity as he made Ali backpedal around the ring. But Ali responded with left jabs and right hands that found their mark again and again. Even the intense heat inside the arena couldn’t stop the two as they fought every minute of every round with neither willing to concede the other one second of the round.

    “They told me Joe Frazier was through,” Ali told Frazier at one point during the fight.

    “They lied,” Frazier said, before hitting Ali with a left hook.

    Finally, though, Frazier simply couldn’t see and Futch would not let him go out for the 15th round. Ali won the fight while on his stool, exhausted and contemplating himself whether to go on.

    It was one of the greatest fights ever, but it took a toll. Frazier would fight only two more times, getting knocked out in a rematch with Foreman eight months later before coming back in 1981 for an ill advised fight with Jumbo Cummings.

    “They should have both retired after the Manila fight,” Schuyler said. “They left every bit of talent they had in the ring that day.”

    Born in Beaufort, S.C., on Jan 12, 1944, Frazier took up boxing early after watching weekly fights on the black and white television on his family’s small farm. He was a top amateur for several years, and became the only American fighter to win a gold medal in the 1964 Olympics in Tokyo despite fighting in the final bout with an injured left thumb.

    “Joe Frazier should be remembered as one of the greatest fighters of all time and a real man,” Arum told the AP in a telephone interview Monday night. “He’s a guy that stood up for himself. He didn’t compromise and always gave 100% in the ring. There was never a fight in the ring where Joe didn’t give 100%.”

    After turning pro in 1965, Frazier quickly became known for his punching power, stopping his first 11 opponents. Within three years he was fighting world-class opposition and, in 1970, beat Ellis to win the heavyweight title that he would hold for more than two years.

    It was his fights with Ali, though, that would define Frazier. Though Ali was gracious in defeat in the first fight, he was as vicious with his words as he was with his punches in promoting all three fights — and he never missed a chance to get a jab in at Frazier.

    Frazier, who in his later years would have financial trouble and end up running a gym in his adopted hometown of Philadelphia, took the jabs personally. He felt Ali made fun of him by calling him names and said things that were not true just to get under his skin. Those feelings were only magnified as Ali went from being an icon in the ring to one of the most beloved people in the world.

    After a trembling Ali it the Olympic torch in 1996 in Atlanta, Frazier was asked by a reporter what he thought about it.

    “They should have thrown him in,” Frazier responded.

    He mellowed, though, in recent years, preferring to remember the good from his fights with Ali rather than the bad. Just before the 40th anniversary of his win over Ali earlier this year — a day Frazier celebrated with parties in New York — he said he no longer felt any bitterness toward Ali.

    “I forgive him,” Frazier said. “He’s in a bad way.”

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06
Jan
12

Fight Photo: Super Six winner Andre Ward receives WBC title in Mexico City for victory over Carl Froch

Posted: January 5, 2012 in Orthodox American, Rest Of World Weigh-In Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

Already the champion of the WBA super middleweight championship, Oakland native Andre Ward (25-0-0, 13ko) annexed the WBC title at the Boardwalk Hall in Atlantic City on Saturday, December 17 due to his dominant decision win over former incumbent Carl Froch (28-2-0, 20ko). To celebrate their new champion, the WBC awarded the title to it’s new holder in Mexico City today, Thursday. Ward is pictured with WBC president Jose Sulaiman and his long-time promoter Dan Goossen of Goossen-Tutor Promotions.

Picture credit: Pepe Rodriguez/WBC

Ward (centre) with his hands on the green and gold belt
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