On this day in 1974, Muhammad Ali and Joe Frazier fought in their 2nd of three total fights. This Super Fight II was taken place at Madison Square Garden in New York City. Ali, who was a slight favorite to win, did so by unanimous decision.
Before their fight, Ali and Frazier visited the ABC studios in New York City to review their first fight for ABC’s Wide World of Sports. While both fighters were reviewing round 11, Ali began trash talking and calling Frazier “ignorant” for mentioning the hospital as Frazier spent a month in the hospital after the first fight. Frazier, who was clearly enraged by these comments, stood up from his seat and squared up to Ali, repeating, “Why you call me ignorant? How am I ignorant?” While Frazier was being calmed down by his team and some studio members, Ali stood up and held Frazier by the neck forcing him to sit down which broke out into a fight on the studio floor. Both fighters were fined for this and the stage was set for their rematch in the ring. To view this altercation, check out the video below.
During the fight, Ali hurt Frazier with his right hand and was in serious trouble. A mistake in which referee Tony Perez thought he heard the bell and stepped in between both fighters ultimately helped Frazier gain valuable seconds to recover so he could finish the round. In a fight that was considered the least significant fight of the three turned out to be extremely entertaining with Ali getting the revenge from his loss in their previous bout. All 3 judges scored the card in favor of Ali.