The Norman Transcript

September 18, 2013

Former heavyweight champion Norton dies at 70


Associated Press

LAS VEGAS — Former heavyweight champion Ken Norton, who beat Muhammad Ali and then lost a controversial decision to him in Yankee Stadium, died Wednesday at a local care facility, his son said. He was 70.

Norton had been in poor health for the last several years after suffering a series of strokes, a friend of the fighter said.

“He’s been fighting the battle for two years,” said Gene Kilroy, Ali’s former business manager. “I’m sure he’s in heaven now with all the great fighters. I’d like to hear that conversation.”

Norton broke Ali’s jaw in their first bout, beating him by split decision in 1973 in a non-title fight in San Diego. They fought six months later, and Ali narrowly won a split decision.