Joe Frazier

The world heavyweight champion and Olympic gold medallist Joe Frazier was born in 1944. He moved to New York after the death of his parents where he demonstrated a natural talent in boxing. His boxing career began with series of fights all over the United States. In 1964, after the hand injury of Buster Mathis, Frazier went and represented America in the Tokyo Olympics. Frazier became famous worldwide by winning the gold medal.

In 1965 he became a professional boxer and it took him only 5 years to pick up his first heavyweight title after winning against Jimmy Ellis. There were many challengers for the title, starting with Muhammad Ali who in 1971 won in the match known as the ‘Fight of the Century’. No matter the loss he manages to respond in the rematch with a victory, becoming the first fighter to beat Ali in his professional boxing career.

Very much Frazier’s career has been defined by his fights with Ali and this culminated in two matches in 1974 and in 1975, respectively. Unfortunately, Frazier lost both matches but in the second game in 1975 ‘Thrilla in Manila’ one can see how well-suited they were. That was one of the closest meetings in the history of box. The coach of Frazier refused to let him back on the ring for the last round, because both men were fighting in extreme conditions. After losing to George Foreman in the sixth round in 1976, Joe Frazier retired but his rivalry with Ali continued and Frazier provoked Ali any time he could.

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