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Old 01-14-2012, 03:52 AM   #1
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Default George Foreman's '73-'74 World Tour

Jamaica, Japan, Venezuela and then Zaire

Why did Foreman never fight in the US in his first stint as World Champion? Is there a reason for this or is it just one of those strange things that happens?
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Old 01-14-2012, 04:40 AM   #2
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Default Re: George Foreman's '73-'74 World Tour

I've often wondered this myself. I suspect it may be to do with tax reasons.
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Old 01-14-2012, 07:24 AM   #3
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Default Re: George Foreman's '73-'74 World Tour

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I've often wondered this myself. I suspect it may be to do with tax reasons.
Yeah, I was thinking maybe something like that. Or some promoters issues or something.

Can't find any info on it though. Surely one of Classic's boxing boffins knows the reason.
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Old 01-14-2012, 08:10 AM   #4
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Old 01-14-2012, 08:30 PM   #5
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Old 01-14-2012, 09:06 PM   #6
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Default Re: George Foreman's '73-'74 World Tour

Biggest mistake George ever made was taking the Ali Fight in Zaire instead of a fight in the air conditioned Astrodome in his home town.
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Old 01-14-2012, 11:42 PM   #7
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Default Re: George Foreman's '73-'74 World Tour

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Classic stuff. In the top picture he somehow reminded me of Saddam. No idea how or why
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Old 01-15-2012, 07:53 AM   #8
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Default Re: George Foreman's '73-'74 World Tour

Why would Don King do that though?

I know the president of Zaire gave a substantial amount of money for the fight to be held there, was it the same situation elsewhere?
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Old 01-15-2012, 08:06 AM   #9
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Default Re: George Foreman's '73-'74 World Tour

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Classic stuff. In the top picture he somehow reminded me of Saddam. No idea how or why

I know what you mean. I get the feeling if I broke into his house, I'd find at least two gold-plated toilets.


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Why would Don King do that though?

I know the president of Zaire gave a substantial amount of money for the fight to be held there, was it the same situation elsewhere?

I read George's auto but I can't remember what he said about this, directly, exactly. I'll try and have a look, later. I know the book's around here, somewhere. I'm pretty sure it was related to King's, uh, financial strategy, in some way. They almost didn't let George out of Venezuela, I think it was? A rocky way to go.
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Old 01-16-2012, 03:27 AM   #10
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Default Re: George Foreman's '73-'74 World Tour

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I read George's auto but I can't remember what he said about this, directly, exactly. I'll try and have a look, later. I know the book's around here, somewhere. I'm pretty sure it was related to King's, uh, financial strategy, in some way. They almost didn't let George out of Venezuela, I think it was? A rocky way to go.
I'd appreciate that.

Just reading Four Kings (finally got round to buying it) and the author talks about how the promoters for Dempsey vs Gibbons convinced all the local businesses in Shelby, Montana to pay for the fight. Convinced them it would put them on the map. In actual fact it bankrupted them but the promoters got their dough.

Don Kings Shelbying world tour?
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Old 01-16-2012, 03:57 AM   #11
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Default Re: George Foreman's '73-'74 World Tour

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Why would Don King do that though?

I know the president of Zaire gave a substantial amount of money for the fight to be held there, was it the same situation elsewhere?
A British company had more to do with that fight being in Zaire then DK did.
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Old 01-16-2012, 04:44 AM   #12
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A British company had more to do with that fight being in Zaire then DK did.
Really? I read the other day that the president of Zaire put up $4m of the money for it to be in his country.

What motivation would a Brit have for staging it in Zaire?
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Old 01-16-2012, 04:52 AM   #13
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Really? I read the other day that the president of Zaire put up $4m of the money for it to be in his country.

What motivation would a Brit have for staging it in Zaire?
Mobutu put up the moolah, but it was a British company led by a couple of big boxing fans that got him to do it. Where DK came in was getting the fighters signatures. DK gets too much credit for that event. He played a big part, yes. But not as big as people think.
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Old 01-16-2012, 04:57 AM   #14
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Default Re: George Foreman's '73-'74 World Tour

John Daly, of the Hemdale Film Coproration, was part of the consortium that wanted it staged in Zaire, as was Don King. Obviously President Mobutu was keen for his country to stage such a contest.

Jamaica holding the George-Joe hiding was down to the highest bidder, with the other main option being the Houston Astrodome. With the Roman fight, a Japanese promoter, whose name escapes me, won the bid for Foreman to defend against Roman instead of a potential Bugner fight at Earls Court- more cash + easier contest (well, a bit easier, this was only Joe Bugner after all).
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Old 01-16-2012, 05:03 AM   #15
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Default Re: George Foreman's '73-'74 World Tour

i don't think Don King even had much power in boxing until Zaire.
and, yes, it was an American satellite broadcasters called Video Techniques Inc. and a british-based film company called Hemdale that did the promotion. King was a front man, he liased with the fighters and he fit the all-black theme of the fight

he may have been involved in Foreman's earlier title fights but only as a peripheral character.
he couldn't have dicatated anything like the countries to stage fights in.
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