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Joe Frazier

An Olympic and Undisputed World Heavyweight boxing champion.

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An Underappreciated Champion!

  • Nov 8, 2011
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For a few years Smokin jOe was the most feared fighter on the planet. He totally destroyed Jimmy Ellis to become the "undisputed" heavyweight champion. He feared nothing and his strategy was to move in and take two punches to land one of his own. He once fought five fighters consecutively. His main drawback was in the era of Muhammad Ali and his personality was "boring" alongside the poetic King of Boxing.

I remember the anticipation leading up to his 1971 match against Ali. It was the first time two undefeated heavyweight champions had fought each other.

What is ironic is that he, like the ficticiious Rocky, are both from Philadelphia yet there is a statue of the Rocky character but no statue of Joe, a real hero from the City of Brotherly Love. Maybe, his untimely passing will cause a statue to be erected.

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December 07, 2011
I'm certain that a statue will be erected at some point.
November 09, 2011
Well it sucks that Rocky got a statue and he's not even real! Hopefully they will memorialize him now, but it would have been nice if he were alive to see it....
November 09, 2011
Actually, it was a statue made for one of the Rocky movies that Stallone left outside the Forum after filming. The city didn't know what to do with it and just kept it. It was kind of a disgrace that the statue stayed there for so long since there were no statues for any Flyers or 76's who had won championships in the building.
November 09, 2011
He sure was courageous since he had been fighting with an almost blind eye and he took on Ali...
November 09, 2011
Probably why he took so many shots to the head in those three fights. In the Foreman fight he got nailed with a body shot that lifted him off his feet. Wonder if that anything to do with his liver problems.
November 09, 2011
I watched a documentary on this subject. Ali came across as a dick, no other way to put it. And any fight he won against Fraizer was very shifty, often won with a corrupt ref. Frazier is the true king of boxing.
November 09, 2011
You had to have lived during that time to know about Ali. He was on tv being interviewed constantly and a lot of what he said was very entertaining. He used to a lot of funny exchanges with Howard Cosell. It was all part of his persona. You should check out the biographical film that he played himself in.
November 09, 2011
No statue in all of Philly? Weak sauce! Hopefully, they'll do one now but, still it's a shame that he was never honored while he was alive. Smokin' Joe...man...I can't believe he's gone. I will never forget watching the Thrilla in Manilla fight, well the recorded fight, I was only born in '78 lol.
November 08, 2011
Yes, the Sweet Science is a little less sweet today because of Joe's passing. Personally, I like fighters like Joe who let their fists do the talking.
November 08, 2011
I've never thought about it, but that *is* pretty ironic. He should get one, too. Nice tribute, Michael :)
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Joseph William "Joe" Frazier (January 12, 1944 – November 7, 2011), also known as Smokin' Joe, was an Olympic and Undisputed World Heavyweight boxing champion, whose professional career lasted from 1965 to 1976, with a one-fight comeback in 1981.

Frazier emerged as the top contender in the late 1960s, defeating opponents that included Jerry Quarry, Oscar Bonavena, Buster Mathis, Eddie Machen, Doug Jones, George Chuvalo and Jimmy Ellis en route to becoming undisputed heavyweight champion in 1970, and followed up by defeating Muhammad Ali on points in the highly-anticipated "Fight of the Century" in 1971. Two years later Frazier lost his title when he was knocked out by George Foreman. He fought on, beating Joe Bugner, losing a rematch to Ali, and beating Quarry and Ellis again.

Frazier's last world title challenge came in 1975, but he was beaten by Ali in their brutal rubbermatch. He retired in 1976 following a second loss to Foreman. He made a comeback in 1981, fighting just once, before retiring for good. The International Boxing Research Organization (IBRO) rates Frazier among the ten greatest heavyweights of all time. He is an inductee of both the International Boxing Hall of Fame and the World Boxing Hall of Fame.

Frazier's style was often compared to that of Henry Armstrong and occasionally Rocky Marciano. He was dependent on bobbing, weaving, grunting, snorting as he grimaced with all out aggression wearing down his opponents ...
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