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Old 09-10-2007, 03:32 PM   #1
mr. magoo
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Default When was Frazier officially recognized as champ?

As much as I know about Joe Frazier, this issue has always confused me.

In March of 1968, Joe Frazier defeated Buster Mathis for the NYSAC world heavyweight title. In 1970, he beat Jimmy Ellis for both the WBA and WBC versions.

When was Joe officially recognized as champion, and how many world title defenses does he actually have?
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Old 09-10-2007, 03:33 PM   #2
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Default Re: When was Frazier officially recognized as champ?

When Ali retire around 1970 or 69 I belive.
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Old 09-10-2007, 03:43 PM   #3
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Default Re: When was Frazier officially recognized as champ?

Not untill he beat Ali in 1971 in some quaters.
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Old 09-10-2007, 04:26 PM   #4
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Default Re: When was Frazier officially recognized as champ?

With Frazier, recognition was both incremental and retroactive. The true beginning of his title reign is now considered to have started with his knockout of the undefeated Mathis for the vacant NYSAC version of the World Heavyweight Title in March 1968. But this was only recognized in five of the United States at the time. (New York, Pennsyvania, Maine, Illinois, and Massachusetts.) Texas granted recognition to Frazier with Joe's win over Zyglewicz a year later. Shortly after Frazier wiped out Mathis, Ellis obtained WBA recognition in a lackluster performance over Quarry.

In the same interval of time that Ellis scored a ho-hum 15 round decison over shopworn retread Patterson, Frazier defended his version of the title four times in riveting performances, against youthful and peaking competition. He'd stopped Mathis (the only one to hold an amateur victory over him), ruined Manuel Ramos's career, and was far more impressive over Quarry than Ellis had been (despite Jerry being far better against Frazier than he was against Ellis). He'd also proved his conditioning and endurance over 15 rounds against his toughest prior competitor, Bonavena.

Having already captured the public imagination, he took both Ellis's WBA championship as well as the vacant WBC title with his four round blowout (recorded as ret 5). The conclusive nature of his knockout established that he had been the best of the active heavyweights, going back to his win over Mathis, two years earlier.

Mike Tyson's situation was nearly identical. Berbick could be described as his Mathis, Bonecrusher Smith as his Ziggy (and Texas recognition), Tony Tucker as his Jimmy Ellis (and formal universal recognition), and Mike Spinks as his Ali (the exclamation point which erased any lingering doubt). After his crunching of Spinks, it could be supposed that the true beginning of Tyson's first reign came against Berbick, nearly two years earlier. (If Smith, Tucker or Spinks had managed to prevail over him, this historic retroactive distinction would be attributed to them.)
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Old 09-10-2007, 06:09 PM   #5
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Default Re: When was Frazier officially recognized as champ?

Quote:
Originally Posted by janitor
Not untill he beat Ali in 1971 in some quaters.
I'm not talking lineal.
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Old 09-10-2007, 08:19 PM   #6
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Default Re: When was Frazier officially recognized as champ?

he won the split title and Ellis won the other, that was the fight that unified
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Old 09-11-2007, 12:56 AM   #7
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Default Re: When was Frazier officially recognized as champ?

Frazier won the New York title with the Mathis win. But not the world body recognition because he opted not to join the tournament. Obviously, Ali was the linear and true champion during the forced retirement. But amongst the world of vacant champion, Frazier only truly deserved or won it with the win over Ellis, because Jimmy had won the tournament of contenders. But I agree with the retroactive legitimacy analysis. By defeating guys like Mathis, Ellis, Bonavena, and Ali, Frazier legitimized his entire reign. I guarantee that if Frazier had lost to Ali the first time, he would have been more of a footnote and his prior reign ignored and riduculed as being that of a pretender. Believe me, Frazier knew that too, which is in part why he put every ounce of his soul into that first fight. It was the fight for respect that he knew he would never get if he lost.
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Old 09-11-2007, 09:54 AM   #8
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Default Re: When was Frazier officially recognized as champ?

Ellis fight 1970. So he defended successfully '4' times. But he was generally ranked #1 by the boxing magazines through 68-70.
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Old 09-11-2007, 10:24 AM   #9
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Default Re: When was Frazier officially recognized as champ?

Quote:
Originally Posted by My dinner with Conteh
Ellis fight 1970. So he defended successfully '4' times. But he was generally ranked #1 by the boxing magazines through 68-70.
Thanks,

I never quite understood what that NYSAC title was, or weather or not it was considered as a world title. Duodenum mentioned that Frazier was recognised as world champ by a few of the States, when he beat Mathis, but I don't suppose that we can legitametly label this as a true title.
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Old 09-11-2007, 10:27 AM   #10
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Default Re: When was Frazier officially recognized as champ?

Quote:
Originally Posted by apollack
Frazier won the New York title with the Mathis win. But not the world body recognition because he opted not to join the tournament. Obviously, Ali was the linear and true champion during the forced retirement. But amongst the world of vacant champion, Frazier only truly deserved or won it with the win over Ellis, because Jimmy had won the tournament of contenders. But I agree with the retroactive legitimacy analysis. By defeating guys like Mathis, Ellis, Bonavena, and Ali, Frazier legitimized his entire reign. I guarantee that if Frazier had lost to Ali the first time, he would have been more of a footnote and his prior reign ignored and riduculed as being that of a pretender. Believe me, Frazier knew that too, which is in part why he put every ounce of his soul into that first fight. It was the fight for respect that he knew he would never get if he lost.
Agreed,

Although many considered Joe as a legitimate champion, he still needed to provide final verification by defeating Ali. If he had stayed in better shape and hadn't developed certain health issues, I wonder if he might have duplicated this performance in one of the rematches, but I guess we'll never know.
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Old 09-11-2007, 10:37 AM   #11
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Default Re: When was Frazier officially recognized as champ?

Quote:
Originally Posted by mr. magoo
Thanks,

I never quite understood what that NYSAC title was, or weather or not it was considered as a world title. Duodenum mentioned that Frazier was recognised as world champ by a few of the States, when he beat Mathis, but I don't suppose that we can legitametly label this as a true title.

I think it was 5 (or 6) states, so hardly a 'world' crown. Most of the top 10 agreed to the tournament, except Frazier's camp. Joe also defended against some of the tourney cast-offs: Ringo Bonavena and Quarry.
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Old 09-11-2007, 10:52 AM   #12
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Default Re: When was Frazier officially recognized as champ?

I'd say immediately post FOTC. It's only really after defeating Ali that Frazier put to bed any doubts as to whether or not he was 'the man in the division'* At the time many probably thought that Ali would regain the title without a problem, Frazier was definitely underestimated.



*Ps: I don't think the same really applied to Tyson, for me after the Berbick win and given the manner by which he cleaned out the HW division in the mid-late 80's, he was the man. Even before the destruction of Spinks in June '88.
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Old 09-11-2007, 10:57 AM   #13
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Default Re: When was Frazier officially recognized as champ?

Quote:
I'd say immediately post FOTC. It's only really after defeating Ali that Frazier put to bed any doubts as to whether or not he was 'the man in the division'* At the time many probably thought that Ali would regain the title without a problem, Frazier was definitely underestimated.
As lineal champ yes. However, this thread was started to determine when exactly the governing bodies considered him as champion.
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Old 09-11-2007, 11:03 AM   #14
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Default Re: When was Frazier officially recognized as champ?

I always believed it was 1970.
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