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Old 09-22-2013, 03:55 PM   #1
markclitheroe
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Default Sonny Liston

Doing a study of Sonny Liston..stuck on a few points..can you guys help with four qustions
1. What was the substance of Listons achievements pre -Ali ?
2.What was his real age in first Ali fight ( officially 32 ! ??)
3.WHY did he quit on stool in fight one ?
4.Did he take a blatant dive fight two..or not ?

Please assemble any answers point by point 1-2-3-4
many thanks in advance.
and remember..its your opinion..thanks
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Old 09-22-2013, 04:05 PM   #2
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Default Re: Sonny Liston

wtf bro, want us to settle the Dempsey-Wills issue whilst we're on it??



1 - Liston was destructive pre-Ali, but he didn't clear out the division in keeping with the legend. What he did do was impress almost everyone who saw him box in that time as one of the greatest destroyers the division had ever seen. Some, including Joe Louis, rated him the most dangerous fighter they had seen at heavy.

He tended to decimate the opposition with deadly box box-punching but the real achievment was in lifting the title in such dramatic fashion against Floyd Patterson.


2. Nobody knows. At least one source has him in his fifties. He was likely in his thirties, although whether he was 32 or 37 will likely never be known. His possible adoption of his brother's identity is the problem.

3. Probably because he was being totally out-boxed - humiliated - by someone he had come to fear in the first six minutes of competition, BUT, multiple doctors attested to a serious separation of the shoulder that would impede Liston's ability to box. Liston, an alcoholic for a number of years, had started drinking again before his first defence against Patterson. He was not in good shape for the first fight.

4. Unknown. Two people watching the same film will swear blind that they've seen two different punches, one a love-tap, the other a brutal snapping punch that nobody could hope to survive. My own feeling is that it is as obvious a quittage as i've ever seen - was he really knocked down? Maybe. But he may have been looking for a chance to lie down. I will also say that there is enough circumstantial evidence to deem both fights "dives" of one sort or another. Footage of the first fight makes that case difficult though.


Good luck
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Old 09-22-2013, 04:22 PM   #3
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Default Re: Sonny Liston

I will add a couple of points here.

I think that his age has been constrained down fairly accurately now due to the emergence of certain documents. There was a thread on this a couple of years back.

There is significant evidence that an irregular betting pattern emerged before the second Ali fight. This lends weight to the idea of a fix.
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Old 09-22-2013, 04:34 PM   #4
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Default Re: Sonny Liston

First bout was no fix. Liston was staggered several times, cut badly across the cheek and was given a gradual beat down over six rounds. Secondly the substance in Alis eyes during the 5th round was more than likely Listons corners doing....you don't do that and then go all out to ko your opponent in a fixed fight.

The second bout has been examined very closely over the ears and no evidence of a fix has ever been found. Patterson, Damato among others at ringside felt the ko blow was a powerful punch.
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Old 09-22-2013, 04:37 PM   #5
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Default Re: Sonny Liston

Quote:
Originally Posted by markclitheroe View Post
Doing a study of Sonny Liston..stuck on a few points..can you guys help with four qustions
1. What was the substance of Listons achievements pre -Ali ?
2.What was his real age in first Ali fight ( officially 32 ! ??)
3.WHY did he quit on stool in fight one ?
4.Did he take a blatant dive fight two..or not ?

Please assemble any answers point by point 1-2-3-4
many thanks in advance.
and remember..its your opinion..thanks
1. He twice knocked out the dangerous and feared puncher Cleveland Williams (in 3 rounds, and 2 rounds), easily beat the former world title challenger Roy Harris in 1 round, then beat the best available contenders Zora Folley (in 3 rounds), Eddie Machen (outpointed 12 rounds). He challenged the champion Floyd Patterson and won the title with a 1 round knock-out, and repeated the result in a rematch.

2. Some sources have him born as early as 1917, which would make him 46 or 47 when he faced Ali the first time. Other sources have him born in May 1932, making him only 31. Plenty of others estimated him being in the 35 - 40 age range.
Liston himself didn't seem to know.

3. There are a number of theories : The fight was fixed.... He was out of shape, under-trained and in the ring with an opponent who he had grossly under-estimated. .... An injury to his shoulder made it impossible for him to fight effectively ...

4. My opinion is that he went down from a weak punch, a punch so weak that even Muhammad Ali didn't really believe it. But why I'm not sure .... could be a blatant dive ; a cynical quit job or maybe a fix conspiracy ... or maybe he was just an old washed-up whisky-soaked pug who couldn't take a punch on this night.
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Old 09-22-2013, 05:16 PM   #6
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During training for the second bout all indications were Liston was in all time condition. Then Ali had his hernia operation that delayed the bout. Liston from accounts I have read then lost his edge. If the bout was to be fixed why would Liston go all out in training to be in the best possible condition to win? If you watch the bout after the fight is stopped and many are milling about in the ring Liston walks to the left side and ....staggers...studder steps from the effects of the KO. This is a while after the fight was stopped mind you. The other thing that's Interesting is that Listons trainer said that once back in the dressing room....nobody else there but Liston and his people....Sonny asked for smelling salts. Listons trainer stated that Liston never asked for smelling salts before.
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Old 09-22-2013, 05:37 PM   #7
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Default Re: Sonny Liston

Quote:
Originally Posted by markclitheroe View Post
Doing a study of Sonny Liston..stuck on a few points..can you guys help with four qustions
1. What was the substance of Listons achievements pre -Ali ?
2.What was his real age in first Ali fight ( officially 32 ! ??)
3.WHY did he quit on stool in fight one ?
4.Did he take a blatant dive fight two..or not ?

Please assemble any answers point by point 1-2-3-4
many thanks in advance.
and remember..its your opinion..thanks
1. 2 epic shoot outs with Cleveland Williams, defeats of Folley, Machen, Valdes, DeJohn, Whitehurst etc

2. Well I read somewhere that when Joe Louis was training for his fight with Tony Galento that he briefly used an 18 year old spar mate by the name of Charles Liston - if this was Liston then that would make him about 43 when he fought Ali which is about what he looked to me?

3. Your guess is as good as mine

4. Got clipped and was way off balance anyway and simply couldn't keep his feet and decided it would be more comfortable just to let himself roll onto his back and then when Ali was jumping around he decided not a good idea to try and get up - then finally when Walcott got Ali away Liston got back up and then it was waved off illegally when no count had even been administered
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Old 09-22-2013, 05:55 PM   #8
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4. Yes, I think he did. Ali simply wasn't able to knock someone down like that with a single punch. Considering all that theatre of Liston while he was down, it was a pretty clear fix, does not really matter if Ali was involved or not. I never understood those who say he quit because he realised he was in over his head. You don't put that much work in selling a knockout punch who never existed unless it's premeditated.
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Old 09-22-2013, 07:40 PM   #9
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Default Re: Sonny Liston

Quote:
Originally Posted by HOUDINI View Post
During training for the second bout all indications were Liston was in all time condition. Then Ali had his hernia operation that delayed the bout. Liston from accounts I have read then lost his edge. If the bout was to be fixed why would Liston go all out in training to be in the best possible condition to win? If you watch the bout after the fight is stopped and many are milling about in the ring Liston walks to the left side and ....staggers...studder steps from the effects of the KO. This is a while after the fight was stopped mind you. The other thing that's Interesting is that Listons trainer said that once back in the dressing room....nobody else there but Liston and his people....Sonny asked for smelling salts. Listons trainer stated that Liston never asked for smelling salts before.
Thanks for this info Houdini, its hard to get anything abit new on this so its appreciated. A note about the anchor punch Ali used in the second Liston go, I was taught it early as a golden glover and practiced it for years, mostly on a double end bag hours a day, and the whole power in it is landing as the opponent comes forward, it doubles the normal impact. At times I was very suprised at how stunned a boxer would be when I landed without much on it, or ko'd him, but its like two trains running into each other, often it doesn't look like much is on it, as with Ali's punch in the second bout.
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Old 09-22-2013, 09:55 PM   #10
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Default Re: Sonny Liston

Does everyone really believe that Liston quit because Ali was dominating the first fight? It has been suggested in this thread more than once and multiple times in the past. So my question is do you really believe this (kinda like those who think Leonard pitched a shutout and was dominating Duran on the scorecards of the 2nd fight), or are you just repeating the popular mantras of our day and regurgitating them?

Liston was up on 1 card 58-56 down on 1 card 56-58 and even on another 57-57. Now it has been a while, but I think I had it even, although I might have had it 58-56 Ali? I still believe that Ali would have won the fight, but I have trouble thinking that Liston quit because he was being humiliated. Perhaps tired and discouraged, but I think there is enough evidence to suggest an actual injury....I won't dispute the 2nd fight at all.
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Old 09-22-2013, 10:15 PM   #11
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Default Re: Sonny Liston

The first bout Ali dominated. I don't see Liston winning any round aside from the 5th. Neither fighter could see the scorecards and at the end of six rounds Ali was unmarked and fresh...Liston was badly cut, exhausted and perhaps had a separated shoulder. Liston was throwing his jab in the sixth so who knows how badly his shoulder hurt? I accept the general thought....Liston was a bully with a bulls mentality. He was beaten, hurt, so he quit.
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Old 09-22-2013, 11:12 PM   #12
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Default Re: Sonny Liston

Quote:
Originally Posted by markclitheroe View Post
Doing a study of Sonny Liston..stuck on a few points..can you guys help with four qustions
1. What was the substance of Listons achievements pre -Ali ?
2.What was his real age in first Ali fight ( officially 32 ! ??)
3.WHY did he quit on stool in fight one ?
4.Did he take a blatant dive fight two..or not ?

Please assemble any answers point by point 1-2-3-4
many thanks in advance.
and remember..its your opinion..thanks
1. He had an excellent 8 year unbeaten streak, culminating in the only time I can think of where a champion of any regard whatsoever was so flatly breezed through in a manner that proved thoroughly reproducible in an immediate rematch, and the champion went on to show that in fact he had plenty of fight left in him. That alone sticks out like a sore thumb in boxing history. You just don't see it. In essence, back-to-back one-round blowouts of a HOF champion, no matter what else ever happens in your career makes a cemented legacy, on top of the consistent hammerings of eight years of fighters, including well-regarded contenders. His legacy is that of one of boxing most feared punchers, and one who was not just a puncher's chance brawler but a serious class boxer and on most of our top heavies lists, most usually between 5-15 (I have him about 13 or 14, personally, right now). Being anywhere on an average top 20 of a division over one hundred year's old is quite a legacy.

2. I was cutting a fellow's hair today, in my barber shop, and I'll relay the same thing I told him. Sonny Liston was 147-years-old when Muhammad Ali whooped his ass. But, seriously, this is still a question mark to the hardcore researcher, even now, as far as I know.

3. I think it was a combination of getting beaten up and getting injured while not getting enough done to assume he could turn it around. He was dejected after his skill, his power, his cheating, and even his body failed him. There was likely the injury and with the course of the fight and what he'd already tried and failed with, there really wasn't much sense in continuing, I assume he reasoned. I disrespect the likely cheating and have mocked him for it before, as some may be familiar with here, if not rather tired of , but apart from that, I feel his reasoning to stop was sound and history proving Ali to be almost impossible to stop seems to have retroactively proven that retirement in the corner was a correct decision. There wasn't to be any come-from-behind kayo punches there.

4. I think it was an intentionally blatant dive. I don't think he wanted much to do with the fight in the first place and already thought very little of his chances. I also think sometimes when a guy takes a dive, and it looks blatant, it's on purpose. It's their way of saying, whether the cause was a personal decision or enforced upon him by some shady so and so, it's saying "I'm letting you know you're not really beating me. I'm going to embarrass both of us here, in a way. Not you or anybody else is getting the satisfaction of thinking I'm getting legitimately defeated." I mean, the flopping was very unlikely to be real, in my opinion. It's true, everyone reacts to different ways of getting hurt so differently that there's a smidgeon of a doubt, even with me, but I do operate under the assumption that it was a purposeful "Look at me, I'm acting." dive. If he was going down, he was taking the shine off of Ali while he did it. That sort of thing.
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Old 09-22-2013, 11:22 PM   #13
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Oh, great. I got hives just from typing that. Great.
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Old 09-23-2013, 02:02 AM   #14
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Default Re: Sonny Liston

Something getting into Ali's eyes is hard to believe. This has been repeated over and over, but no facts or logic support that claim.
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Old 09-23-2013, 03:03 AM   #15
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Default Re: Sonny Liston

In regards to the second fight being fixed.

If a fighter lands a knockout punch he knows it. He feels it. Sometimes a shock goes up the elbow.

There is film of Ali asking his brother in the ring after the fight "did I hit him?" Did I hit him?" Ofcourse his brother told him yes. He wasnt even sure he hit him. That along with the look of it makes me fairly certain that it was a dive for whatever reason.

We know that Liston took a good punch. Ali not a devastating puncher especially early in fights. Common sense suggests there was some monkey buisness going on.

With that said I dont believe that Ali was in on it. I dont believe he felt he needed any help to beat Liston he had just beaten him the last fight.
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