1970sBoxingBoxing's Great Grudge FightsDr. Ferdie PachecoESPNHeavyweight BoxingHeavyweight Boxing ChampionsHeavyweight Grudge FightsMuhammad Ali

Boxing – Heavyweight Title – Muhammad Ali VS Ken Norton – 1st Fight


There are a few videos in Bone Daddy’s library that sound like they were recorded under water…..and this is one of them….as I apologize for this bit of distortion in the audio….however, it is still discernible and the video part is just fine…..especially since this is Muhammad Ali. This first fight with Norton on March 31, 1973 in San Diego, CA was not expected to be the war that it turned out to be….as Norton was a ex-Marine who came into the ring as a 5 – 1 underdog who was ranked # 7 in the heavyweight division.

Muhammad Ali was known to not train very hard for what he considered to be “warm-up fights”…..which is how he viewed Norton….a warm-up for his fight against Champ George Foreman….so Ali comes into this fight at 221 lbs……which was heavy for Ali….showing how he viewed this match. It has been purported that Norton broke Ali’s jaw in the 2nd round…..which meant that Ali, as he had done on occasions before….proved his toughness and mental ability to overcome pain….just to be able to go 10 more rounds with a hard hitting Kenny Norton…..who showed his Marine mentality of “taking no prisoners”…..for Norton took dead aim at Ali’s jaw the entire rest of the fight…..landing numerous right-hooks and over-hand rights to the jaw.

It was this type of toughness that elevated Muhammad Ali to legendary status in boxing history…..not just the incredible hand and foot speed coupled with punching power that he would display throughout his boxing career.


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