Muhammed Ali, former United States and world boxing champion, gave a press conference in New York on Tuesday (January 29th) with Joe Frazier -- the man he had just beaten on points in a 12-round bout.
GV Frazier entes hall and mounts platform
SV Frazier, with announcer, speaking
SV Ali puts on reobe and site
SV Ali, annoucer, speaking
FRAZIER: "There was a couple of times I stung him and hurt him real well, and there was nothing he could do about it, you know. He was just trying to hold. I think if I could have got that holding off, everything would have been alright. I think the referee did try. He warned him many times about holding. But I guess there was nothing to do done about it."
REPORTER: "During the fight what did he say to you?"
FRAZIER: "He said - he won that round. You know he won that round. He said, I'm going to hit and hold you. Hit you and hold you. So these were the things he tried to do. And I tried to do as much as I can. I know -- it was punches swapped."
ALI: "It was a much better fight than the first one. I actually though Joe was finished. I was surprised at the fight you put up. Actually I felt a little weary when I saw him coming on in the later rounds. I thought I am in trouble. I burned a lot of energy winning these rounds and Joe was getting started. It went through my mind about how good he was. But I happened to get a second wind. From then on (indistinct). I can't say nothing funny, can't say nothing bad. All the publicity, all the hollering. Joe was a little upset on the day that I won. But I had no hard feelings, but I know he doesn't either really.
As far as the future goes I would like another fight. I would love to give Joe another chance. I am not going to duck Joe. I am going to give Joe all the chances he wants, because he deserves it. I think that fight was much better than the first fight.
"I must say I am proud of Joe. He had enough left to prove all of you wrong. Who said that we were finished? You can talk about superfight number two. Two fighters who are not champions who punched each other to death. I would like to say again to the surprise of all of you: we just put on another fight that can't be topped by no heavyweight fight in history."
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Background: Muhammed Ali, former United States and world boxing champion, gave a press conference in New York on Tuesday (January 29th) with Joe Frazier -- the man he had just beaten on points in a 12-round bout. Ali said he would 'love to give Joe another fight', while Frazier said that he would probably have won if ali had not done so much holding.
This was return match for their first bout in 1971 when Frazier won. Although it was not a world title fight, it attracted enormous interest; each man earned 3 million U.S. dollars (1,350,000 pounds sterling) from it. The biggest purse in the history of boxing. The pattern of fighting was as expected, with Frazier, massively strong and resilient, trying to get in a big punch, and Ali putting in a flurry of punches and then dancing out of range or going into a clinch. The points decision was unanimous.
After the fight, Ali harangued pressmen for over two hours. Frazier slipped away before the end, having said that he, too, would be happy to have another fight.
Ali was full of praise for Frazier. He expressed much more interest in another fight with Frazier than in a chance to fight world champion George Foreman.