Did you know about 70's heavies?

Ok late 60's early 70's...

After winning three consecutive golden gloves titles, Joe Frazier won Olympic gold as we all know. But Joe Frazier didn't make the Olympic team. He actually lost to Buster Mathis in the finals of the trials. He was invited to train with the team and was added when Matchis busted his hand on Joe's head. Joe of course later avenged this loss to Mathis as a pro via 12th round KO.

Despite being an Olympic Gold Medalist, Frazier had a hard time turning professional! No one offered him an financial backing or a contract, in fact, he begged managers to take him and no one would. He tried to join the armed service and was rejected when he failed an apptitude test. He was fired from his job at the slaughter house because he broke his thump in the semi-finals of the Olympics and he couldn't work in the wet conditions of the slaughter house, hosing down guts, etc. He was broke with a family and absolutely no one watned to touch him. Finally, he appealed to the news paper and a group of rich investors each put around $250.00 into the pot.

Frazier's arm is actually "locked" into position for his left hook. His left arm does not fully extend due to a break suffered when he was harrassing the family pig.

Ken Norton was origionally cast as the role of Appollo Creed in Rocky. He only lost the role because he chose instead to compete in the ABC series (I think its called "All Stars") featuring top athletes in various physical tests to determine who is best. Its the same show that Mosley won.

Carl Weathers got the role and lied about being a boxer up in Canada previously. It wasn't until the got him into a gym they discovered he had never had any expereince.


Also Earnie Shavers was the first choice to play
Clubber Lang which went to Mr. T. They said
Shaver's had to soft a voice and too hard a punch
for Stallone.

Yah gotta' admit that Mr.T was an intimidating dude in the flick (of course I was only 13 when that came out).

"shavers would have accidentally killed stallone lol"

Well... the story is that Stallone asked Ernie to do a little light sparring with him, so he could see how well they meshed together.

Ernie threw one at Sly's body, which he took on his arm, and down he went for several minutes. When he finally caught his breath and was able to get up, he said "Hey, I said LIGHT!" Ernie replied "That was light."

So... "Rocky" got dropped by a shot to his arm lol.

Man, those old school heavies (particularly the 70's) were really special. Hearing stories like this is just awesome. Aside from Ali, Frazier, Foreman, there was Norton, Shavers, Foster, Holmes. They all had talent AND balls.

And Jerry Quarry belongs right up there too. He would smoke most of todays heavys.


don't know much about Quarry, outside of his match with Ali. Can you fill me in?

Gil Clancy calls him the purist puncher he has ever seen. He was a top contender in the late 60s early 70s. He did lose to Ali and Frazier, but he knocked out Ernie Shavers in the first round and also beat Ron Lyle.

Foreman called Quarry "the best heavyweight to never win a title."


Holyfield reminds me a lot of Quarry: a lot of heart,
punches in bunches, excellent counterpuncher,
takes a great shot, too enamored with his power,
but doesn't cut the way that Quarry did. Quarry-
Norton is a very exciting fight, which Norton wins by
TKO, although Quarry was past his prime and a bit
overweight. Quarry could never seem to win the
big fight, despite his obvious talent, and was doing
well against Frazier (in their first fight) for the first
few rounds until he faded. Chuvalo-Quarry has a
very strange ending.

When Jerry and his brother Mike would spar, they
would really go at it. When Mike was 16, I think,
Jerry knocked him cold in a sparring session.

Hi Mike,

I have both fights on tape but it has been a while
since I've watched them. This is from memory.
Chuvalo KO'd Quarry --7th or 8th round, I think-- but
the ending was bizzare. This is what happened:
Quarry was clearly winning the fight and had
closed one of Chuvalo's eyes. Quarry was coming
forward and Chuvalo cliiped him on the temple
with a left hook. It didn't look like a very hard shot
but Quarry went down. He immediately popped up
but then took a knee to recover. Although he didn't
look like he was hurt, he managed not to beat the
count. He popped up right after ten and then
complained vociferously to the referee. He
could've continued but he didn't beat the count. As
such, I would blame Quarry, not the referee.

Quarry did all right against Norton but he took a ton
of hard shots and the stoppage was justified.
The end of Quarry's life was very sad because he
had a bad case of pugilistica dementia.

"Quarry did all right against Norton but he took a ton of hard shots and the stoppage was justified. The end of Quarry's life was very sad because he had a bad case of pugilistica dementia."

Jerry also spent many years doing a lot of hard partying. He abused both alcohol and booze for many years. Who's to say what really was the root cause of his troubles.

"He abused both alcohol and booze"

Are alcohol and booze different?

Sure, Chad, Jerry's condition, and that of other
boxers, had nothing to do with his being punched
in the head, very hard, thousands and thousands
of times during his life. If you believe that his
boxing had nothing to do with the fact that he
couldn't take care of himself toward the end of his
life, then you are in denial.

Fans of Jerry Quarry should visit the Jerry Quarry
Foundation website.


"He abused both alcohol and booze""
"Are alcohol and booze different?"

Ha! My dumb ass meant to write ALCOHOL and DRUGS. My mistake.

RDO, clearly... many boxers have taken too many shots and have suffered from the effects of doing so. My point was/is that he also may have caused it through his severe alcohol and drug problems. Both of which are as damaging, if not more so, than boxing.

Many former boxers, including face first brawlers, have not suffered anything near the kind of problems that Quarry did.

However, in my line of work, I run into many drunks and dope fiends on a daily basis. I've not seen any long term substance abusers who haven't done some severe damage to themselves both physically and mentally.

I won't argue with you about that, Chad :) Quarry had some great moments in the ring. In particular, against Shavers and Lyle. It is hard to dislike his style: smart aggressive, lots of punches, very entertaining. In fact, I think he liked to bang too much. A lot like Holmes in that respect. Even if he could box circles around the other guy, he couldn't resist the lure of proving that he was tougher as well. Did anyone see Quarry's fights against Patterson? Jimmy Ellis? Descriptions?