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Thread: Ali's physique pre layoff.. post layoff.

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    Ali's physique pre layoff.. post layoff.

    curious as to what you folk at cbz think on this matter. In more recent times the opinion that Ali was more physically impressive and displayed a large musculature post layoff has become more prevalent. However, after reviewing many a photo ive come to disagree. Ali's 'prime' is often a subject of much debate and a notion exists that post layoff he was a bigger, stronger, sturdier man. Just finished watching ali-chuvalo 1, he weighed in at 214 pounds... had an impressive hard physique and was by no means tossed around like a rag doll by Chuvalo whom although not a Ko artist was definately an immensely strong heavyweight and i'd say stronger than the likes of Frazier. Thoughts?

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    Re: Ali's physique pre layoff.. post layoff.

    No one gets better after three plus years of not doing what they were good at.

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    Re: Ali's physique pre layoff.. post layoff.

    After the 3 1/2 year layoff, Ali came back for Quarry I only two pounds heavier than what he weighed against Folley in '67. But his musculature, as photos and videos clearly show, had thickened. Not that he was bulky, just that the "streamlined" physique he had pre-layoff seemed to have lost some definition, being replaced by more mass, IMO. His face and neck seemed to have filled-out some, too, which perhaps lent more to the perception that he had broadened.

    As it has been dissected many times here on CBZ and on other boxing boards, I don't think there will ever be much agreement as to when Ali had his ONE true "prime". There was much to be said for the dazzling hand and foot speed of Clay from the first Liston fight, just as there is for an older, slower--but savvier Ali who befuddled and outlasted George Foreman. My personal opinion is the young Ali still has not been eclipsed by any heavyweight that followed him, in terms of pure speed and reflexes. And when you have a 6'-3", 212 lb. heavyweight tossing shots with the rapidity that he did in the first act of his career, I'll say the younger version of The Greatest is the one I'll choose as being "prime".

    I never saw Clay or Ali manhandled by anyone; mugged, yes, by Wepner, for example, but no one ever seemed to be able to physically outmatch him that I can recall. The Ali of 1972 on seemed to be more physical against his opponents only because his game had changed since his comeback. Lots of flurries followed by clinches (think Ali vs. Frazier 2nd), and the need to catch a breather following some of his sprints in the ring, for example, saw him tie up against a lot of his opponents. In doing so, he seemed to be able to maneuver them, nullify their inside game, etc., with little problem, always seeming to be in the dominant position.

    BTW, Chuvalo may not have had the best track record against top-notchers, but unless the majority of them came against unemployed dog sledders or Edmonton cab drivers, I'd say 64 KO's in 73 wins speaks well for his power in general.

    Regards,
    Kyoodle
    Last edited by Kyoodle; 11-24-2009 at 12:43 AM.

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    Re: Ali's physique pre layoff.. post layoff.

    In terms of physical gifts like agility and reflexes and speed of foot and hand, the post Ali was not the best Ali. In terms of maturity, experience and mental and physical strength I think the post layoff Ali was a superior fighter Oh, to combine the two What a fighter that would be.

    Aesthetically speaking, the Clay/Ali was superior to the post exile Ali
    Last edited by walshb; 11-24-2009 at 03:15 AM.

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    Re: Ali's physique pre layoff.. post layoff.

    Quote Originally Posted by walshb
    In terms of physical gifts like agility and reflexes and speed of foot and hand, the post Ali was not the best Ali. In terms of maturity, experience and mental and physical strength I think the post layoff Ali was a superior fighter Oh, to combine the two What a fighter that would be.

    Aesthetically speaking, the Clay/Ali was superior to the post exile Ali
    Well, the maturity and experience were a chronological event. Ali got older, ergo he gained maturity and experience. I think the younger Ali had plenty of mental strength in digging down deep against Doug Jones, solving Mildenberger, rising from the Cooper knockdown and fighting blind against Liston in the 5th round of their first fight. Not to mention the mind games he played against opponents like Liston, Patterson, Chuvalo, etc.

    No, I think his mental strength was just ducky.

    I would agree he was also aesthetically superior before the layoff, and that a mythical fight between the young and the "older" Ali would be one for the ages.

    Regards,
    Kyoodle

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    Re: Ali's physique pre layoff.. post layoff.

    Quote Originally Posted by Kyoodle
    Well, the maturity and experience were a chronological event. Ali got older, ergo he gained maturity and experience. I think the younger Ali had plenty of mental strength in digging down deep against Doug Jones, solving Mildenberger, rising from the Cooper knockdown and fighting blind against Liston in the 5th round of their first fight. Not to mention the mind games he played against opponents like Liston, Patterson, Chuvalo, etc.

    No, I think his mental strength was just ducky.

    I would agree he was also aesthetically superior before the layoff, and that a mythical fight between the young and the "older" Ali would be one for the ages.

    Regards,
    Kyoodle
    I realised whilst writing my post that I was stating the obvious, as regards maturity&experience, that's why I added in physical strength.

    Also, I think confidence grew with Ali, as one would expect from
    experience.

    I am of the belief that although the younger man, 1964-1967, was
    superb and a handful for any heavyweight ever, the older man (1971-1974) would
    possibly present a tougher challenge due to that maturity and experience
    and mental strength.

    Oh, and the older Ali IMO doesn't go down when Cooper nails him, actually, I reckon
    Ali smiles at Cooper!
    Last edited by walshb; 11-24-2009 at 05:12 AM.

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    Re: Ali's physique pre layoff.. post layoff.

    The young Ali would toy with and easily outpoint the old Ali. The young Ali had faster feet, could move more, throw more, and keep it up more consistently. The old Ali couldn't b.s. the young Ali and laying on the ropes wouldn't work because young Ali was too fast, would pick his shots and combos, and back off without getting tied up.

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    Re: Ali's physique pre layoff.. post layoff.

    Quote Originally Posted by Kyoodle
    BTW, Chuvalo may not have had the best track record against top-notchers, but unless the majority of them came against unemployed dog sledders or Edmonton cab drivers, I'd say 64 KO's in 73 wins speaks well for his power in general.
    As a Canadian let me say that I'm insulted by this stereotype. Yes I have a dog and yes I have a sled but I have a job goddamnit.

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    Re: Ali's physique pre layoff.. post layoff.

    George Chuvalo was a hell of a fighter. Underrated IMO. He had a great chin, nice attacking style, good combos to the head and body. Put him in a fight to the finish with a lot of these guys who won decisions against him and the fights could easily have gone his way.

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    Re: Ali's physique pre layoff.. post layoff.

    When I think of Chuvalo I think of punchbag

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    Re: Ali's physique pre layoff.. post layoff.

    Quote Originally Posted by 10-8
    As a Canadian let me say that I'm insulted by this stereotype. Yes I have a dog and yes I have a sled but I have a job goddamnit.

    The only consolation I have in this regard is knowing that the first guy to accuse Julio Cesar Chavez of padding his record against Tijuana taxi drivers suffered the same slings and arrows as I

    Peace out, my brother from the Great White North.

    Kyoodle

    PS--I'm gonna take a shot, knowing how sparsely-populated your country is: Would you happen to know a buddy of mine? His name is Carl and he lives in Moose Jaw, Saskatchewan. If so, please say "Eh?" to him for me. Thanks!

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    Re: Chuvalo--Punchbag or Helluva fighter?

    Little bit of truth to both. He didn't know any other style but face-first; fought like the other guy just slapped his mother, but sure did soak it up. He always came in looking fit and never seemed to tire, but also never seemed to be able to deviate even a little bit from his typical, bruising style.

    In any event, I found viewing his fights damned enjoyable.

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    Re: Ali's physique pre layoff.. post layoff.

    He was like a pure solid oak tree, so sturdy and strong, and could throw lovely punches when he opened up

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    Re: Ali's physique pre layoff.. post layoff.

    The Ali who fought frazier in their first fight was the best punching ali of all time. He was stronger and able to compete at a level against Joe that I dont think he could have at first. Of course he had not the legs of old, but I dont think he was at that time able to take what Frazier brought. He would have had to move and keep moving. Alis body at his first reign was priceless and one of the best of all time for boxing. What we missed was his added strength to go with his old speed of foot which was robbed of him and us by the layoff.

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    Re: Ali's physique pre layoff.. post layoff.

    Quote Originally Posted by Kyoodle
    Would you happen to know a buddy of mine? His name is Carl and he lives in Moose Jaw, Saskatchewan. If so, please say "Eh?" to him for me. Thanks!
    SHIT! You know Carl? He and I used to work as lumberjacks near Red River before the great Maple Syrup famine that damn near wiped out our whole village! I'll say hi to him for you.

    The bastard still owes me a beaver pelt.

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    Re: Ali's physique pre layoff.. post layoff.

    Quote Originally Posted by 10-8
    SHIT! You know Carl? He and I used to work as lumberjacks near Red River before the great Maple Syrup famine that damn near wiped out our whole village! I'll say hi to him for you.

    The bastard still owes me a beaver pelt.
    Thanks for the comeback, 10-8, but watch yourself around ol' Carl: he may be a nice guy but he's been known to water down the Molson's he'll pour you, and isn't above running out on the tab at Tim Horton's!

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