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Joe Frazier dies.

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Joe Frazier dies.

Post  malena stool on Wed 9 Nov - 18:25


Joe Frazier, one of the all time greats, dies
One of the greatest heavyweights of all time, 'Smokin' Joe Frazier, died yesterday at the age of 67.

He passed away after a short battle against liver cancer.

The son of sharecroppers from South Carolina, Frazier literally fought his way out of abject poverty to hold the greatest title in sport, in the greatest era, between 1970 and 1973.

His record stands at 32-4-1, losing only to Muhammad Ali and George Foreman (twice each).

They say that to be a great you have to beat a great and Frazier did just this in perhaps the best known boxing match of all time, his 1971 Madison Square Garden showdown against Muhammad Ali.

So transcendent was the contest that it has simply become known as 'The Fight'.

And, indeed, his name and memory will be forever yoked with that of his greatest opponent and the nemesis he could never quite forgive for his personal slights, Ali.

They shared the ring twice more, Ali winning on both occasions, most memorably in one of the most brutal sporting contests in history, their 1975 'Thrilla in Manila'.

Frazier was almost blind in his left eye throughout his professional career and his right eye was closed shut towards the end of a bout verging on the inhuman.

With Frazier close to complete blindness in the 14th round, a desperately tired Ali summoned the energy to give an unmoveable Frazier some severe punishment.

In perhaps the most compassionate act I've ever seen in boxing, Eddie Futch withdrew his man with just one round left to go.

"I want him boss," pleaded Frazier, courage personified.

Futch replied, "It's all over. No one will forget what you did here today," and called off the bout.

What their corner didn't know was that Ali, incredulous at Frazier's superhuman strength, desire and courage, trudged back to his corner and asked for his gloves to be cut off.

Frazier's stablemate Willie Monroe was behind them, saw this, and tried to frantically signal to Futch that Ali was quitting. The signal never got through.

Ali, famously, later said it was the closest he had ever been to death.

He announced in a post-fight interview, "He is the greatest fighter of all times, next to me."

"The world has lost a great champion," Ali said in a statement yesterday.

"I will always remember Joe with respect and admiration. My sympathy goes out to his family and loved ones."

“Good night Joe Frazier," said George Foreman. "I love you dear friend."

A great boxer and sportsman. RIP Joe Frazier..

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