Did Sonny Liston throw his 1965 fight against Muhammad Ali?

  • The most obvious dive in boxing history

    This was surely the most poorly acted dive in ring history. Clearly Liston had agreed to lose but no one, including Ali, expected him to do so in the first round, hence Ali shouting "Get up, nobody will believe this" and asking his cornermen "Did I hit him?" No boxer ever landed a knockout punch without knowing it instantly. Whatever the background to the 'fix', and there has been much speculation, Liston carried it out in a way such as to do no favours to the boxing establishment that had treated him so abysmally for all his career.

  • Yes Sonny threw the fight

    It doesn’t matter now, Ali is in the books as champion and the winner of both fights. But I do believe Sonny threw the fight. But on another note Muhammad Ali now knows his belief as a Muslim was wrong. Because he is now in eternity. He lost the biggest fight of his life, his soul

  • Liston Probably Had No Choice But To Take A Dive.

    Sonny Liston was the strongest and one of the most naturally talented heavyweights of all time. Between 1958 and 1964 he was unbeatable and completely dominated the heavyweight division. Denied a title shot until September 1962, he received the most hostile press of any champion in history, including Jack Johnson. He was never accepted by the boxing establishment and was ultimately willing to throw the Ali fights due to a combination of threats and enticements. His poorly acted dive in the second Ali fight was a deliberate act of retribution on those who fixed the fight but expected him to delay the ending until much later. He was the only relaxed person in the ring after the fight.

  • The fix was in

    Ali was perhaps a top five GOAT HW.

    It does not take away from the fact that Liston threw the fight. There should not be a doubt in anyone's mind. Ali, was not noted as a big puncher. There is no way Ali could ever knock Liston out. The only phantom about that so-called punch, was that Liston went down. Ali screamed at him, get up you yellow bum, no one will believe this. I heard that Liston's wife and kid were being held hostage. I never saw a man in boxing brace himself before he hit the canvass.

  • Hardly worthy of debate

    Commentators belittle themselves when they claim that Ali knocked out Sonny Liston. Ali was a light puncher but Liston had clearly agreed to lose. In the circumstances he couldn't hit Ali with full power and therefore would have had to receive punishment from an ungrateful Ali. He decided not to do so and exited early without much attempt to hide the dive. Ali was deprived of looking good and realised that everyone would realise that it was a poorly executed dive. Liston didn't care - he'd kept his part of the bargain in his own way.

  • Sonny was the best ever heavyweight,

    Liston possibly threw both fights - certainly the second. He was so despised, and this may seem unnatural now, that there was little money in him winning. He had also lost all regard for the boxing establishment, including the press. He realised that he was never going to be accepted and opted for income. He was, however, undoubtedly, the best heavyweight of all time. He just had no significant supporters. Shame.

  • Sonny threw, Ali knew

    Sonny threw the fight due to pressure from Muslims his Mafia friends and a deal to make money from Ali's future fights, Ali knew what was going on, that's why he said when Liston carefully lowered himself to the floor, "get up u bum no one will believe this" Liston very bad actor. Had no respect for title, as when he eon it the first time, no one cared any better about him

  • The protagonists gave the game away.

    Liston who went down from feather duster punch never complained that Ali did not go to a neutral corner nor that the referee failed to give him a count. Neither did his handlers who ought to have demanded Ali's disqualification.
    Ali who never expected Liston to take a dive so early shouted " Get up, no-one will believe this". He even asked his cornermen "Did I hit him?" While he and his handlers came up with the 'anchor punch' story the next day, Ali , hardly a modest man, never referred to the fight or the punch in all of his many interviews over the years. He never threw the 'anchor punch' again despite needing it on many occasions.
    That Liston took a dive is beyond dispute.

  • A botched fix

    Liston had obviously agreed to throw the fight - the reason remains unclear; muslim threats, mafia pressure, or potential future income from receiving a share from future Ali fights? However he caught all by surprise by deciding to exit in the first round following an innocuous punch. The referee was totally confused and Ali, who had expected Liston to not quit until later, was horrified that the public would see that the fight was fixed. Liston didn't care - the boxing establishment and the boxing public had never shown him any respect and he was returning the favour. Boxing almost died that night but by the next day vested interests, including boxing writers, attempted to rescue their careers by making outlandish statements that the punch was significant. No one who knew anything about boxing was fooled.

  • Liston's lack of protest says a lot

    Sonny Liston was declared knocked out without a count. Ali shouted " No one will believe this". Clearly both knew how the fight was to end but Liston decided to do it his way and not play the game envisaged. He had by this stage little regard for the boxing establishment. If it had been a genuine knockout he would have had real grounds for protest at Walcott's ineptitude and the flouting of the rules. He didn't and that tells its own story.

  • Complicated, But No

    What was the incentive for Sonny to throw this fight? Who paid him to do so? The theory makes no sense. It seems far more likely that, in the grand tradition of mob-controlled fighters, Liston was forced to take this fight when he did not have much desire to do so. Liston was pretty old (nobody really knows how old he was) and the training period was extended artificially when Ali had a severe hernia that required surgery.

    Old fighters have a very hard time staying in top shape and Liston obviously was not up to it. He came into the second fight in poor shape, got caught with a clean punch before he got warmed up and went down. Was the fight on the up-and-up? Not really - Liston didn't want to be there. But the mob doesn't pay its own fighters to take dives against fighters it doesn't control. That's just not how it works.

  • Just think it was as tasty as a barbeque chicken

    The barbque chicken is tasty but i also like it with a nice glass of rew wine not cider as its disgusting i prefer sex on sunday morning after chicken and wine the night before my wife usually sucks me off real nice on a sunday morning,we are both into our late 80s but still enjoy it ...Thanks

  • Silly Myth Destroyed.

    Watch the slow motion replay. Liston walks into a short but powerful right hand by Ali. Ask any fighter how much fun it is to walk into a punch. Liston's head is clearly jarred. If slow motion replay and multiple camera angles had existed at the time this silly myth would never have been born. By the way, it is IMPOSSIBLE for there NOT to have been a conspiracy in JFK's assissination.

  • Silly Myth Destroyed

    Watch the slow motion replay. Ali catches Liston with a short but powerful right hand as Liston walks into it. Ask any fighter how much fun it is to walk into a punch. Liston's head visibly is jarred. If replay and multiple camera angles had been available at the time this silly myth would never have been born. By the way, it was impossible for there NOT to have been a conspiracy in the JFK assassination.

  • Look at the ripple

    Sonny Liston's whole body ripples when Ali hits him. That's pretty difficult to fake. It looks like Liston walks into it and was simply caught way off guard. It can happy to any fighter and this time one of the most talented heavy weights of all time had it happen to him.

  • No, he didn't

    It would have been much more lucrative for Sonny to recapture the World Heavyweight crown. Besides, he wasn't someone who could be threatened to taking a dive. He was afraid of no one. He had more reason to win this rematch as he quit in the 8th round of their title fight due to a shoulder injury.

  • Liston dumbfounded by perfect right

    I believe Liston got caught with a perfect right that was unguarded. Ali hit him with the perfect short punch and Liston was brought down by the shock of the unexpected event. Whether he could have gotten up without the big flop onto his back is another question. Ali had him psyched out before the bell even rang and it was Ali's fight. The timing situation was a bit of a joke but Liston was beat.

  • No! He was never counted out!

    I have watched the fight countless times. 1) Sonny beat the count! Wrong you say, however I am correct. The ref never even began to count. Sonny said later he waited for the ref to start counting, but was able to get up before the ref started. If Sonny took a dive he would have STAYED DOWN. He got up and began fighting with Ali. 2) Think.. Was there a conspiracy with the time keeper and the ref and Liston to throw the fight? Of course there wasnt! Walcott the ref, was told by a sports writer and the time keeper to stop the fight after a
    Ali and Liston began fighting again. 3) Liston took a heavy right hand punch to the from Ali about 30 seconds prior to the "anchor" punch. If he was going to take a dive, that would have been a great time to fall. 4) If you watch the punch carefully you can see that it lifted up Liston's right leg. You can also see his head snap back and a ripple through his whole upper body from the force of the punch. 5) If you still have any doubts, watch the MMA fight with Anderson Silva knocking out his opp with a short right while back peddling. Same punch Ali threw!

  • No, Muhammad Ali was insurmountable.

    No, Sonny Liston did not throw his 1965 fight against Muhammad Ali, because Ali was the greatest fighter of all time. Ali fairly defeated Liston. Because Liston lost, some of his fans will want to find a way to explain it. However, there is no evidence that he threw his fight. He simply lost.

  • He got caught

    M. Ali had a wicked short left jab. He got caught by it plain and simple! I had a friend who trained with him and had learned the technique . I saw him k.O. A guy the same way. (Guy picked a fight, was over in a couple of seconds).

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