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Old 07-23-2012, 08:23 PM   #24
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Default Re: 'Why I Took A Dive' by Sonny Liston

Sonny cleared his throat, sat up and began talking like a man who is discussing a painful subject for the absolute last time. "Clay caught me cold and the count was messed up, and that's all they was to it," he said. "Clay knocked me down with a good punch. Anybody can get caught cold in the first round, before you even work up a sweat. And when I was down, Clay stood right over me. No, I never blacked out, not for a second. But I wasn't gonna get up, either, not with him standin' over me. See, you can't get up without puttin' one hand on the floor, and so I couldn't protect myself, and he can hit me on the way up.

"So there was Walcott [Referee Jersey Joe Walcott] and Clay wrasslin' over me and Walcott finally got him to a corner or somethin', and then I got up and Clay come back and we started back to fightin' again.

"And Nat Fletcher [ Nat Fleischer, editor of The Ring Magazine] began wavin' his arms at ringside and Walcott stopped the fight. Nowadays Nat Fletcher says he was just callin' Walcott over to tell him that the timekeeper wanted to see him or somethin', but other people says it was Nat Fletcher stopped the fight.

"I was never counted out. I coulda got up even right after I was hit. And I still felt pretty good when I did get up. I mean I could still go on. What Walcott shoulda done, he shoulda sent Cassius to a neutral corner. When the referees call you out in the center of the ring before a fight, they tells you that: go to a neutral corner. And that's when they count you out, not with no fighter standin' right over you.

"They shouldn't have fighters refereein' no fights no way," Sonny added, now back in his horizontal position. "They should have people that don't get excited."
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