After a buildup highlighted by the famous studio brawl on the studio floor of a Howard Cossell presented show, the expected fireworks didn't fully go BANG come fight time. Partly due to Frazier not being quite as busy with his fists as he had been in their famous first fight, but 95% due to the combination of Ali's ridiculous incessant holding and the referees inability or refusal to do anything about it? As Frazier's venerable trainer, the great Eddie Futch, complained afterward, "I watched the fight back afterward and Ali held 133 times in 12 rounds." This really marred the fight in its entirity, and that number may have even been under-counted, equating to a hold every 20 seconds but when watching the fight it feels more like every 7 or 8 seconds, and becomes increasingly frustrating for the viewer the longer it goes un-called out by the ref who seemingly may aswell as not been there. Someone once said that figure was a record for a 12-rounder, whether Vlad Klitschko ever overtook in recent years is anybodies guess, but this performance may well have inspired the famous Klutchsko style. In hindsight maybe Ali was preserving himself for the potential Foreman fight and any potential rubber match with Frazier himself?
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