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Ring Magazine commemorates 50th anniversary of Frazier vs. Ali I with special edition issue

A special nod to the 'The Fight of the Century'

Ring Magazine is paying tribute to the Fight of the Century with an ultimate special edition issue.

Both undefeated in a combined 57 fights together, Joe Frazier and Muhammad Ali unified the heavyweight belt with a historic fight on March 8, 1971, with Frazier winning a hard-fought unanimous decision victory.

Called the ‘Ultimate Special Edition,’ the issue will feature special cover art by award-winning artist Richard T. Slone.

“I’m very proud of this special issue,” Ring Magazine Editor-In-Chief Doug Fischer said in a press release. “Properly commemorating a fight with the historical background and magnitude of Frazier-Ali I is a daunting task for any publication, but The Ring staff was up to the challenge. I believe that Associate Editor Tom Gray, the driving force behind our Four Kings, Mike Tyson and Manny Pacquiao special issues, has hit another one out of the park with our tribute to The Fight of the Century. The archival photos and articles, brilliantly arranged and designed by Creative Director Lamar Clark, mix perfectly with new features penned by award-winning writers, such as Donald McRae, Ron Borges, Michael Rosenthal, Don Stradley, and Tris Dixon to accurately present the build-up, significance, context and impact of March 8, 1971.”

“But it’s the first-hand accounts of the legendary rivals and that epic night from hall-of-famers Larry Merchant and Thomas Hauser, as well as behind-the-scenes background from Gene Kilroy, the last surviving member of Ali’s team, that make this issue truly ‘special,'” Fischer added.

“I’m so proud of my father, and Pops done a great job,” Frazier’s son and former fighter Marvis said. “He did what he had to do in the ring that night, and the whole family were so happy. To me, it’s the greatest win ever. My father was a great boxer and coming all the way from South Carolina to become the man, to prove himself as champion… God just blessed him. Beating Ali didn’t make my father the man of the year, it made him the man of the whole century. It’s great that Ring Magazine are paying tribute to this fight.”

Frazier passed away on Nov 7, 2011 at the age of 67, while Ali died on June 3, 2016 at the age of 74.

The Frazier-Ali edition is available digitally as a pre-order, with the print edition scheduled for official release on Feb. 4.

Kenai is a former Postmedia Network online news and sports editor. He is the Editor-in-Chief for MMA Crossfire.

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