If you were training a boxer to fight Muhammad Ali...

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If you were training a boxer to fight Muhammad Ali...

Duggerman
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.....it's 1967 and Muhammad Ali is as fresh, agile and fast as ever! You're a trainer and your boxer has earned a title shot against The Greatest. Ali has mocked you at the press conferences, he has the fans and media on his side, and is giving you playful and arrogant looks during the pre-fight introductions.

Once the bell rings, what would you tell your young pupil to do?
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Re: If you were training a boxer to fight Muhammad Ali...

BAD INTENTIONS
Duggerman wrote
Once the bell rings, what would you tell your young pupil to do?
Shoot Muhammad in the ankle with a shotgun.... That's the only way to cut down that blasted speed!! lol.

In all seriousness there is no "best strategy" to use against this guy....his speed was almost supernatural. His style was full of errors and he blatantly flashed them in front of you all night but you could never do anything about it because you couldn't catch him...he, on the other hand, could catch you, again and again as he pleased.
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Re: If you were training a boxer to fight Muhammad Ali...

Duggerman
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BAD INTENTIONS wrote
Shoot Muhammad in the ankle with a shotgun....
I'm pretty sure that's against the rules...instant DQ! lol.

BAD INTENTIONS wrote
In all seriousness there is no "best strategy" to use against this guy....his speed was almost supernatural. His style was full of errors and he blatantly flashed them in front of you all night but you could never do anything about it because you couldn't catch him...he, on the other hand, could catch you, again and again as he pleased.
What about cutting the ring? I'd tell my boxer to cut the ring and attempt to land to the body when you get close enough or when Ali is cornered or against the ropes. This is the strategy Joe Louis said he'd use, and it's the same strategy Frazier used in the first/third fights and Marciano did the same in the Computer fight. In each case the body blows slowed Ali down during the middle to late rounds, making him more vulnerable and easy to hit.

The Eddie Futch strategy of countering Ali's jab could also work. During the first Liston fight Liston landed his jab cleanly whenever he jabbed after Ali. Even at his best Ali was vulnerable to a counterjab. Liston landed his a couple times by accident, but Eddie Futch and Ken Norton used this one technique as a fight plan and it gave Ali hell in three fights with Norton.
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Re: If you were training a boxer to fight Muhammad Ali...

Shogun of Harlem
Yea. Cut the ring and only attack when he's cornered without clear escape routes. If you try to box him in the center of the ring he'll tear you to shreds from the distance. Just press him and only attack when you're close enough to land. You'll lose most of the early-middle rounds but your accumulation of body blows and counters will slow his speed during the later stages.
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Re: If you were training a boxer to fight Muhammad Ali...

Duggerman
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Who gave prime Muhammad Ali the most trouble? We know Frazier and Norton had the styles to beat the older version but no one who fought Ali in his peak really threatened him. There were guys who landed some great shots on him like Mildenburger and Chuvalo but that's it. Doug Jones and Henry Cooper did well against Ali before he hit his prime, so it technically doesn't count.

Since no one greatly troubled prime Ali it's hard to say what a concrete strategy would be. I think my theories earlier may work but they were never used on Ali until after his exile.
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Re: If you were training a boxer to fight Muhammad Ali...

Phantom Punch
In reply to this post by Duggerman
Duggerman wrote
What about cutting the ring? I'd tell my boxer to cut the ring and attempt to land to the body when you get close enough or when Ali is cornered or against the ropes. This is the strategy Joe Louis said he'd use, and it's the same strategy Frazier used in the first/third fights and Marciano did the same in the Computer fight. In each case the body blows slowed Ali down during the middle to late rounds, making him more vulnerable and easy to hit.

The Eddie Futch strategy of countering Ali's jab could also work. During the first Liston fight Liston landed his jab cleanly whenever he jabbed after Ali. Even at his best Ali was vulnerable to a counterjab. Liston landed his a couple times by accident, but Eddie Futch and Ken Norton used this one technique as a fight plan and it gave Ali hell in three fights with Norton.
A combination of both would give the guy a chance. Jab with Ali and keep pressing him and when he's cornered go to the body. This would make him uncomfortable. He can run all he likes but if you're even with his jab and keep walking him down eventually he'll find himself cornered and you can land some good shots. This may not guarantee a win but it's a decent strategy and would make him uncomfortable and give him less control.
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Re: If you were training a boxer to fight Muhammad Ali...

Sivul
You guys listed some great strategies. They may or may not work. We'll never know. but I think the most important rule when facing Ali (or Tyson, for that matter) is not to let him get in your head. He's a pyschological genius. The insults hurt, and I imagine it'd be even worse when the crowd is behind him and not you. You may feel like the loneliest man in the world when facing Ali and his insults will make you feel lower than whale sh*t if you're not careful. Don't fall victim to his mind games and commit to your strategy. Prime Ali was fast and tough, but still human and could be vulnerable.
Luc
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Re: If you were training a boxer to fight Muhammad Ali...

Luc
In reply to this post by Duggerman
Frazier executed the perfect plan against early 70s Ali but I have no idea how to beat 67 version

Perhaps play possum and hope he makes a horrible mistake
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Re: If you were training a boxer to fight Muhammad Ali...

It's Dale
In reply to this post by Duggerman
Duggerman wrote


.....it's 1967 and Muhammad Ali is a fresh, agile and fast as ever! You're a trainer and your boxer has earned a title shot against The Greatest. Ali has mocked you at the press conferences, he has the fans and media on his side, and is giving you playful and arrogant looks during the pre-fight introductions.

Once the bell rings, what would you tell your young pupil to do?
I would sit my boxer down and say "Listen, son. We're going to work on your speed. Muhammad is a fast man. To even compete with him you're going to need surreal speed of your own." I'd hire quick sparring partners and get my boxer used to fighting fast guys and punching with them. Joe Louis used to spar with Eddie Futch for that very reason.
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Re: If you were training a boxer to fight Muhammad Ali...

Zorro
Don't chase Ali. Cut the ring but do it in a subtle way. Eventually you'll get your opening when he's cornered or careless. This is what Joe Louis would do. You may lose some rounds by being patient but he can only run for so long. Don't chase him. Just smoothly walk him down and use angles to cut him off and fire the rocket when you corner him. A left hook would be the best punch since Ali was always open to it.
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Re: If you were training a boxer to fight Muhammad Ali...

Duggerman
Administrator
Zorro wrote
 A left hook would be the best punch since Ali was always open to it.
Bingo. That's the punch, whether to the head or the body. Joe Frazier destroyed him with a double left hook to the body and head in round 11. The ropes kept Ali on his feet. If not for the ropes that would have been the end of the fight.

Photobucket
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Re: If you were training a boxer to fight Muhammad Ali...

Evolution
There is no iron-clad strategy to defeat The Greatest. The only way you'll beat him in his prime is if he has a bad night.

He had surreal speed (both hand and foot) a lightning jab, iron chin, supreme confidence and more charisma than arguably anyone else who laced up the gloves. The crowd and the universe would be on his side.
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Re: If you were training a boxer to fight Muhammad Ali...

Brooklyn's Finest
In reply to this post by Duggerman
Duggerman wrote
Zorro wrote
A left hook would be the best punch since Ali was always open to it.
Bingo. That's the punch, whether to the head or the body. Joe Frazier destroyed him with a double left hook to the body and head in round 11. The ropes kept Ali on his feet. If not for the ropes that would have been the end of the fight. Photobucket
I think Ali would have survived if the ropes didn't break his fall. He would have went down but gotten up as he did later in the 15th. This would increase Joe's chances of a TKO, but I don't see him flooring Ali for a full 10 count. If Frazier couldn't kayo Ali in 3 fights, then it just wasn't meant to happen.
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Re: If you were training a boxer to fight Muhammad Ali...

Hit Em' Hard
In reply to this post by Evolution
Evolution wrote
There is no iron-clad strategy to defeat The Greatest. The only way you'll beat him in his prime is if he has a bad night.
I wouldn't say all that. He is the greatest and would be a difficult fight for anyone. He's a huge heavyweight with the grace of a panther and speed of a lightweight.

But he was human. He had flaws. He made mistakes. My advice would be to cut the ring, slow his legs by whacking the body, and unleash the hammer to the head when he's cornered with his hands low.

FYI, even though I am a huge Mike Tyson fan, I'd always pick Ali to beat him, though if he got careless for one second Tyson could end it. With Tyson's speed and punch he could knock out anybody, and he was one of the best finishers ever.
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Re: If you were training a boxer to fight Muhammad Ali...

xGhostRiderx
Hit Em' Hard wrote
Evolution wrote
There is no iron-clad strategy to defeat The Greatest. The only way you'll beat him in his prime is if he has a bad night.
I wouldn't say all that. He is the greatest and would be a difficult fight for anyone. He's a huge heavyweight with the grace of a panther and speed of a lightweight.

But he was human. He had flaws. He made mistakes. My advice would be to cut the ring, slow his legs by whacking the body, and unleash the hammer to the head when he's cornered with his hands low.

FYI, even though I am a huge Mike Tyson fan, I'd always pick Ali to beat him, though if he got careless for one second Tyson could end it. With Tyson's speed and punch he could knock out anybody, and he was one of the best finishers ever.
Why would you always pick Ali over Tyson?

I'm just curious; Ali is probably my favourite boxer, mostly because of his charisma I would imagine, but I've always been unsure if he would have done as well during the late 80s and the 90s.

Who knows how he would have done against the super heavies and the great finishers during that era.
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Re: If you were training a boxer to fight Muhammad Ali...

Hit Em' Hard
Tyson struggled with Tillis, Smith, Green and Tucker all in his prime. Ali was levels and levels above them. Plus Ali nearly always found a way to win, unlike Tyson who lost most of his legacy fights.

But like I said, Tyson's sudden power could change things. Ali never fought someone like Tyson before. If they fought 5 times in their peaks, Tyson may win once.
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Re: If you were training a boxer to fight Muhammad Ali...

Friday The 13th...
In reply to this post by xGhostRiderx
Ali would dance circles around the big slow lumberjacks like Lewis, Bowe, Briggs, Golota and Ruddock. No one in their right mind would pick Mercer, Tua or Morrison over Ali either. Ali's biggest threats would be Tyson and Holyfield but he would beat them without many problems.
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Re: If you were training a boxer to fight Muhammad Ali...

RICKY TAN
In reply to this post by Luc
Luc wrote

Perhaps play possum and hope he makes a horrible mistake
This might work. Make a laughable farce of the fight. Pretend your dumb and don't know what the hell you're doing. And then surprise the siht outta him!!
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Re: If you were training a boxer to fight Muhammad Ali...

Evan Fields
In reply to this post by Duggerman
Whatever strategy you pick, you gotta have patience. Ali rarely tired in his prime. He could dance all night. Don't try to chase him down or anything.  Don't do anything he wants or expects you to do. Hell if anything I'd tell my boxer to make Ali come to him instead; reverse things.
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Re: If you were training a boxer to fight Muhammad Ali...

Phantom Punch
Evan Fields wrote
Don't do anything he wants or expects you to do. Hell if anything I'd tell my boxer to make Ali come to him instead; reverse things.
That might just be crazy enough to work. Ali didn't do well fighting as the aggressor. His style was made to counter and attack as you're coming at him.

But what if he doesn't fall for it? Then you'll have two guys in the ring running from each other all night!
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