Former Heavyweight Boxing Champion Muhammad Ali (Cassius Clay), announced in Texas yesterday (Thursday) that he would be fighting Wilt "The Stilt" Chamberlain - the 7-foot 2-inch (2.18-metre) basketball star.
Former Heavyweight Boxing Champion Muhammad Ali (Cassius Clay), announced in Texas yesterday (Thursday) that he would be fighting Wilt "The Stilt" Chamberlain - the 7-foot 2-inch (2.18-metre) basketball star. While the former champion stated "This ain't no joke. It ain't no gimmick", Chamberlain himself did not turn up at the press conference - although he was scheduled to do so - and later it was announced that some "problems" had arisen concerning the half-a-million dollar guarantee demanded by the Basketball star. While he has never fought professionally, Wilt is a tough, powerful athlete with an exceptionally long reach. He is 11 inches (27.5 centimetres) taller and weighs 60 pounds (27 kilos) more than Ali.
In view of this announcement, we are sending you this film which shows Chamberlain taking part in his most recent basketball match - in which, although his team, the Los Angeles Lakers, were defeated 116-98 by the Milwaukee Bucks, Chamberlain himself is shown in top form as a player and all-rounder athlete. The match took place in Milwaukee on Sunday, April 18.
SYNOPSIS: The Milwaukee Bucks meeting their traditional rivals the Los Angeles Lakers on Sunday. Stars of the match are two seven-foot centres, Bucks' Lou Alcinder and Lakers' Wilt "The Stilt" Chamberlain - number thirteen wearing a head band.
Although his team was on the losing and this time, Chamberlain himself was in top form - showing the athletic dexterity which has brought him to the news forefront this week in a totally different sport. Four days after this match, a press conference in Houston, Texas, was told by former Heavy-weight champion Muhammad Ali that he would be fighting Big Wilt in an unprecedented bout next July.
Chamberlain - here losing the ball to Alcinder - did not himself appear at the presser, and it was later said that there were "problems" in connection with the half-a-million-dollar guarantee which he is said to be getting for the bout.
Chamberlain has never fought professionally, but at seven feet two inches he is eleven inches taller than Ali - and weighs sixty pounds more than the former champion. To say nothing of his extraordinary long reach, so well-developed in his years as a top basketball player.
Whatever the outcome, a fight between Ali and the ever-popular Wilt will undoubtedly bring out the fans - who, even when they are in the winning team's home stadium, give opponent Chamberlain a standing ovation.