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Wednesday, November 19, 2003
Ali wins unanimously over Frazier
By Larry Schwartz
Special to

Jan. 28, 1974

The second Muhammad Ali-Joe Frazier fight doesn't live up to the standards set by the first competition, but it still is a good one. With a flurry of jabs and occasional right hands that prevent the aggressive Frazier from smokin', Ali avenges his 1971 loss to Frazier by taking a 12-round decision in the non-title fight. (Frazier had lost his crown to George Foreman in 1973.)

"I was in the best shape of my life," says the 212-pound Ali, who outweighed his smaller opponent by three pounds. "Tell me the truth, did I look 32 years old?"

Ali, the 7-5 favorite, is a winner on all three officials' cards - 8-4, 7-4 and 6-5-1 - before a glamorous gathering of 20,748 in Madison Square Garden. Frazier, though, disputes the decision. "Yeah, I thought I won," said the 30-year-old Philadelphian, whose record fell to 30-2. "Clay held the whole fight."

Both former champs immediately look ahead to a rubber match, with Frazier saying, "I want him again. One more time."

He will get him - the next year in the Thrilla in Manila - but will lose again to his nemesis.

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