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Old 11-10-2012, 07:17 AM   #1
Bokaj
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Default Ali-Bob Foster rds 3-5: Break down Ali's assets and flaws

This is one of the few times Ali stays on mid to close distance for several rounds straight. Foster is of course seriously outdone in terms of size and strength, but Ali does show some nice work, I think.

Watching the footage what do you think Ali does and doesn't do well? Any thoughts on Foster?

[ame]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WQ1pxr4Gzu0&feature=relmfu[/ame]

[ame]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8PfQjTESlsQ&feature=relmfu[/ame]

Posters who don't feel up to analyzing the actual footage can keep out. Many other threads around here for you.

Last edited by Bokaj; 11-10-2012 at 07:33 AM.
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Old 11-10-2012, 07:37 AM   #2
Stevie G
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Default Re: Ali-Bob Foster rds 3-5: Break down Ali's assets and flaws

Ali's only flaw in this one was that he could have stopped Foster quite a few rounds earlier than he did. Such was Muhammad's habit with those opponents whom he did n't consider a real threat. He boxed pretty well,though. Foster put up a brave fight.
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Old 11-10-2012, 07:52 AM   #3
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Default Re: Ali-Bob Foster rds 3-5: Break down Ali's assets and flaws

I'll get started then.

In rd 3 Ali just clowns around, but with the clear purpose of wearing Foster down. In rds 1-2 he had done some damage from the outside with the jab and right cross and probably felt that pushing Foster around was the best way of softening him up before going for the kill. Keep in mind that the fight was held in Salt Lake City at high altitude. Ali likely thought that Foster would tire quickly at the altitude and had no respect for his physical presence or even his power.

He closes the distance at will, picks of Foster's blows with elbows and gloves, and just pats him to show his superiorty. The tactic seems to work, since Foster gets confused and wound up and looks weary at the bell.

In rd 4 Ali is looking to do some serious work. He wants to find the mark with his right, but Foster has anticipated this as Ali's main weapon and adopted a narrow stance to minise his opennes to the right. He also does quite well to keep Ali away with the left. Hooking around his gloves at times and manages to open a cut.

Ali is patient, though. And keeps on working behind his own left when he can't find good openings with the right. Toward the end of the round he starts to find the mark with the left hook, which Foster's narrow stance leaves him more open for.

In rd 5 Ali is coming out fast, clearly decided to end it. He's really going for the left hook now. He hardly uses the jab, but instead leading with his left hook with right behind. The main damage is done with the hook. He's relaxed the whole way through despite going toe to toe, using subtle head movements to make Foster miss almost every punch.

With feet planted and hands low he's relying entirely on that head movement. And he doesn't have any respect for Foster's power. His punches aren't fully leveraged, but very relaxed - doesn't use up much energy - and precise.
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Old 11-10-2012, 09:43 AM   #4
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Default Re: Ali-Bob Foster rds 3-5: Break down Ali's assets and flaws

Albuquerque (Foster's home) 4900 ft msl, .....Salt Lake City 4400 msl.
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Old 11-10-2012, 09:47 AM   #5
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Default Re: Ali-Bob Foster rds 3-5: Break down Ali's assets and flaws

What Ali did worked well enough. He made it look like a mismatch for the most part, and the crowd were entertained.

But, if you want a frank criticism : with the assets Ali had, he could have trapped Foster in a corner and just battered him to oblivion. Foster was cagey but it's not as if he was quick footed. Foster was fighting like a skinny old man. Ali pressed him but he didn't herd him.
He could have drowned the poor guy with brutal punches. He found the power to KO Bonavena, Foreman and send Lyle into tailspin.
He could have battered that skinny little guy within 2 rounds.

The gulf in strength and robustness in this fight is so apparent.
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Old 11-10-2012, 11:51 AM   #6
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Default Re: Ali-Bob Foster rds 3-5: Break down Ali's assets and flaws

Quote:
Originally Posted by Unforgiven View Post
What Ali did worked well enough. He made it look like a mismatch for the most part, and the crowd were entertained.

But, if you want a frank criticism : with the assets Ali had, he could have trapped Foster in a corner and just battered him to oblivion. Foster was cagey but it's not as if he was quick footed. Foster was fighting like a skinny old man. Ali pressed him but he didn't herd him.
He could have drowned the poor guy with brutal punches. He found the power to KO Bonavena, Foreman and send Lyle into tailspin.
He could have battered that skinny little guy within 2 rounds.
Yep, he didn't go fot the power punches. I think that's because Ali was basically cautious by nature. He's often likened to Leonard, but Leonard was actually much more viscious and agressive by nature, much closer to Robinson. Ali took an opening when it was presented to him, but he didn't have the taste for blood that those and many other greats had.

He prefered to land relative light but precise punches, probably because he then took very little risk of exposing himself for a counter or punch himself out (like Holyfield was on the verge of doing against Bert Cooper, for instance). He really only sat down on his punches when the opponent forced him too (FOTC, Manilla) or when the opponent was so open to them that it made it worth it (Williams, Foreman, Lyle etc).

Ali's punching reminds me of McCallum's in this regard. McCallum-Watson is an excellent example of Mike not putting any real power in his shots, getting them in cleanly but relaxed, until at the very last when Watson is helpless and there for the taking.
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