BOXING GREAT KEN NORTON DEAD

Published on: September 18, 2013
Photography by: NYC Archives
NationalEnquirer.com

Former heavyweight champ KEN NORTON who battled MUHAMMAD ALI for the championship 3 times has died at age 70.

Norton, whowhumped Ali and then lost a controversial decision to him in Yankee Stadium, died today at a local care facility in Arizona and had been in poor health for  several years after suffering a series of strokes.

Norton broke Ali’s jaw in their first fight, beating him by split decision in 1973 in a non-title bout in San Diego. They waged a ferocious battle six months later with Ali narrowly winning a controversial split decision.

They met for a third time on Sept. 28, 1976, at Yankee Stadium and Ali again narrowly won to keep his heavyweight title.

Norton would come back the next year to win a heavyweight title eliminator and was declared champion by the World Boxing Council. But, he lost a bruising 15-round fight to Larry Holmes in what many regard as one of boxing's epic heavyweight bouts on June 9, 1978 and never regained the championship belt.

During the 1980s, Norton made a number of guest appearances on TV including the shows “The A-Team” and “Knight Rider.”

Norton also appearted in over 20 movies and was set to play Apollo Creed in "Rocky" but was forced to bow out. 

Norton continued making TV, radio and public speaking appearances until suffering injuries in a near-fatal car accident in 1986. It left him with slow and slurred speech. Adios, amigo.