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Old 02-07-2011, 10:14 AM   #1
Il Duce
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Default Muhammad Ali vs. Thad Spencer 1967

March 1967,

Muhammad Ali signed to fight Thad Spencer in Tokyo, Japan.
Pre-set for April 29, 1967.

Muhammad Ali also agreed to fight either Joe Frazier, and/or Oscar Bonavena in June 1967, also in Japan.

The Japan government, at first was willing to allow Muhammad Ali to reside in Japan, while battling the U.S. Government over his military
induction case.
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Old 02-07-2011, 10:38 AM   #2
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Default Re: Muhammad Ali vs. Thad Spencer 1967

Quote:
Originally Posted by Il Duce View Post
March 1967,

Muhammad Ali signed to fight Thad Spencer in Tokyo, Japan.
Pre-set for April 29, 1967.

Muhammad Ali also agreed to fight either Joe Frazier, and/or Oscar Bonavena in June 1967, also in Japan.

The Japan government, at first was willing to allow Muhammad Ali to reside in Japan, while battling the U.S. Government over his military
induction case.
What happened in regards to both the fights?

sorry, misread the year, ha ha!
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Old 02-07-2011, 10:50 AM   #3
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Default Re: Muhammad Ali vs. Thad Spencer 1967

JM36,

Too bad the Thad Spencer bout never happened.
It may have been Muhammad Ali's most competitive fight, during his first reign.

Thad was on a roll, and his only loss in his previous bouts was due to a cut-eye, in a bout where he was dominating until the stoppage.

Spencer even called out Joe Frazier, and was willing to fight 'Smokin Joe' in the
confines of Philadelphia, which was turned down.

Ever see Thad Spencer fight......1965 thru early 1968..?
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Old 02-07-2011, 11:01 AM   #4
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Default Re: Muhammad Ali vs. Thad Spencer 1967

I think Spencer had a bad knee that restricted his mobility.

This would have been bad news for him against Ali.

Last edited by Longhhorn71; 02-07-2011 at 11:26 AM.
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Old 02-07-2011, 11:28 AM   #5
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Default Re: Muhammad Ali vs. Thad Spencer 1967

Quote:
Originally Posted by Il Duce View Post
March 1967,

Muhammad Ali signed to fight Thad Spencer in Tokyo, Japan.
Pre-set for April 29, 1967.

Muhammad Ali also agreed to fight either Joe Frazier, and/or Oscar Bonavena in June 1967, also in Japan.

The Japan government, at first was willing to allow Muhammad Ali to reside in Japan, while battling the U.S. Government over his military
induction case.
Interesting fact,Duce. Thanks. Ali would have beaten all three,handily at this juncture. There's no way that even Joe Frazier would have been ready for Ali in 1967,as Joe had only been a pro for two years. Beating George Chuvalo was one thing etc etc.
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Old 02-07-2011, 11:31 AM   #6
Il Duce
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Default Re: Muhammad Ali vs. Thad Spencer 1967

The original WBA Elimination Tournament, scheduled for July 16, 1967
Had;
#3 Floyd Patterson vs. #6 Oscar Bonavena
#2 Ernie Terrell vs. #7 Jimmy Ellis

#4 Thad Spencer vs. #5 Karl Mildenberger
#1 Joe Frazier vs. #8 George Chuvalo

Both Joe Frazier and George Chuvalo dropped out, when Madison Square Garden (Teddy Brenner and Harry Markson)
offered them more money, and a bigger % of the 'live gate'.

By Joe Frazier's own admission, he was not ready for Muhammad Ali in 1967.
In an article with Cloverlay, Inc., Joe Frazier stated he would be ready in 2-years, sometime in 1969, after
Muhammad Ali clears up his 'thing' with the U.S. Army.
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Old 02-07-2011, 12:31 PM   #7
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Default Re: Muhammad Ali vs. Thad Spencer 1967

Quote:
Originally Posted by Il Duce View Post
Ever see Thad Spencer fight......1965 thru early 1968..?
I watched the entirety of his win over Terrell, dropping Ernie on his face with a second round right hand, a knockdown Terrell avenged with a left hook decking of his own a few rounds later. (This second knockdown was not mentioned in Sports Illustrated's coverage of the bout, nor is it mentioned by boxWRECK, but it was also a quality knockdown. Unfortunately, it seems it wouldn't be known about at all without the videotape of the broadcast, not currently on youtube.)

To me, Terrell was much better against Spencer than he'd been with Ali. Yes, I felt Thad deserved the decision, but wasn't really that impressed by him. No he would not have been competitive with Ali, not with his lack of stature and mobility. Unlike Terrell, I don't believe Spencer would have gone the distance with Muhammad.
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Old 02-07-2011, 01:32 PM   #8
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Default Re: Muhammad Ali vs. Thad Spencer 1967

I agree, Thad Spencer was good and very athletic, but not on par with
Muhammad Ali or Joe Frazier.

I would say he was a stronger version of Doug Jones. With his forward-moving style, and lack of big-power, he would have been out-boxed by Muhammad Ali.
If Thad was in condition, he could have taken that fight into the 10th Round or so, and maybe landed a few decent rights and brought some cheers to the crowd.

That said, I think Thad had the right style to beat a Floyd Patterson in 1966/1967.
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Old 02-07-2011, 01:37 PM   #9
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Default Re: Muhammad Ali vs. Thad Spencer 1967

Thad would have been stopped, probably a tko in the 9th or 10th..the biggest thing he would have had going for him would have been his youth...Ali had been younger than his competition until the Quarry fight.
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Old 02-07-2011, 01:43 PM   #10
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Default Re: Muhammad Ali vs. Thad Spencer 1967

Spencer had quick and accurate hands, but he was rather conservative and slow of foot. In fact he had some parallels with Joe Louis, aside from Spencer not being much of a puncher. I agree that Ali would have probably stopped him by the 10th round. Not the best match-up for Spencer.
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Old 02-07-2011, 01:56 PM   #11
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Default Re: Muhammad Ali vs. Thad Spencer 1967

Though Thad's career collapsed with the loss to Jerry Quarry, he was still a
formidable foe for anyone in the Heavyweight Division.

Scored a 'BIG UPSET' early in his career, when he defeated the Super Star Heavyweight of the Future, Otis Lee (6' 6" Heavyweight with miles of talent).
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Old 02-07-2011, 11:29 PM   #12
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Default Re: Muhammad Ali vs. Thad Spencer 1967

I don't think anyone ever knew what kind of Thad Spencer would show up.

He was so good against Ernie Terrell.
He then sleep-walked when fighting Jerry Quarry.

He did claim, that Joe Frazier hadn't fought anybody, and was ducking all the
real good fighters in 1967.

Thad wanted to fight Joe Frazier in Philadelphia in early-1967, but Yank Durham
turned Thad down.
Thad was one of the few fighters that called Joe out.
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Old 02-07-2011, 11:48 PM   #13
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Default Re: Muhammad Ali vs. Thad Spencer 1967

Quote:
Originally Posted by Il Duce View Post
I don't think anyone ever knew what kind of Thad Spencer would show up.

He was so good against Ernie Terrell.
He then sleep-walked when fighting Jerry Quarry.

He did claim, that Joe Frazier hadn't fought anybody, and was ducking all the
real good fighters in 1967.

Thad wanted to fight Joe Frazier in Philadelphia in early-1967, but Yank Durham
turned Thad down.
Thad was one of the few fighters that called Joe out.
Cool stuff. I met Joe a few times when I was a kid and he was my idol probably before I knew what boxing was.
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Old 02-13-2011, 09:56 PM   #14
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Default Re: Muhammad Ali vs. Thad Spencer 1967

IMHO Spencer was always overrated. I remember the tournament well in 67-68 but several people have mentioned to me that he was the pre-tournament favorite? Who had he beaten at that point to warrant that!? And don't forget his sterling remaining pro record of 0-7-1 after the Quarry beatdown.
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Old 02-13-2011, 10:15 PM   #15
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Default Re: Muhammad Ali vs. Thad Spencer 1967

Before the tournament, many of the boxing scribes had picked Thad Spencer, because of his athletic ability, and impressive work-outs.

In previous bouts he beat-up a dangerous #15 Amos Lincoln and shut-out #8 Doug Jones.
And, lets not forget, he did drop Ernie Terrell, and beat Big Ernie worse than
Muhammad Ali had.

In the Jerry Quarry fight, Thad never recovered from 'two' big punches from
JQ in the 1st Round.
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