Tuesday, November 8, 2011


Frazierandali,  Aliandfrazier, effect and cause, cause and effect.

It was the pinnacle of heavyweight boxing and at the apex they stood as one. In an era of unparalleled American excellence there was Norton, Ellis, Quarry, Foreman, Holmes but there was never another Frazierandali, Aliandfrazier.

With all that defined America in the late 1960's and early 1970's,  in a time of tumult and changing mores, while the world watched as Vietnam divided our country and a President resigned in disgrace, Joe Frazier and Muhammad Ali captured our attention and kept it.

From the first of the epic trilogy on that night in Madison Square Garden, where the force that was Frazier broke the jaw and closed the mouth of Ali, to that moment in Manila where the saga came to a close, it was a compelling drama. As Frazier sat on his stool, almost blind and unable to come out for the last of 15 brutal rounds, Ali collapsed in his corner. Each had traveled to the limit of his physical and emotional capacity.

And so death has finally separated Frazier from Ali. But from the moment 40 years ago that these 2 first exchanged blows they became forever intertwined and inextricably connected by their greatness and the force of their wills.

Frazierandali, Aliandfrazier. Now and forever.

1 comment:


In retrospect, Ali had neither the right nor the permission to insult Frazier with words like gorilla, Uncle Tom and ugly. He apologized, but as every boxer knows you 'cannot unring a bell' and Ali's words hurt. He should have (and did) know better. The more I reflect back, the more I appreciate and admire Smokin' Joe Frazier in inverse proportion to how less I like Ali's ultimate legacy.