BOB FOSTER/MUHAMMAD ALI
High Sierra Theatre, Stateline, NV
November 21, 1972
Ali won an 8th round KO
About Bob Foster
Born April 27, 1938 in Albuquerque, NM
Died November 21, 2015, Albuquerque, NM
Career record: 56 wins (46 KO), 8 defeats, 1 draw
Foster got into lots of scraps as a youngster in Albuquerque's South Valley, but it wasn't until he joined the U.S. Air Force that he took his fighting into the ring. He competed and coached as a member of the Air Force Boxing Team, and coached future heavyweight contenders Billy Daniels and Doug Jones. Jones would later knock out Foster in a professional match.
After turning pro, he fought rather unsuccessfully as a heavyweight and, as a result, went back to the light heavyweight division where he knocked out the World Champion Dick Tiger in 1968 to win the World Title. In 1969, Foster retained his title by defeating Frank DePaula in the first round. It was the first time a boxer ever won a title fight in the first round after being knocked down and rising from the canvas.
Foster fought Joe Frazier for the World Heavyweight Title in 1970, but Frazier knocked him out in two rounds. In spite of his loss in the heavyweight division, Foster continued to dominate the light heavyweight division, but switched back to the heavyweights when he fought Ali in 1972. He was the first boxer to ever cut Ali, but during the course of the fight, he was knocked down and got up seven times until he was finally knocked down for good in the eighth. Foster fought his last title fight to a draw in 1974. Seven fights and four years later, he retired from the ring. After retirement, he became a detective with the Bernalillo County Sheriff's Department in the Albuquerque area, and continued to train professional boxers.
Many boxing historians consider Foster one of the greatest Light Heavyweight World Champions ever: Ring Magazine named him the third Greatest Light Heavyweight of all time. He was named to Ring's list of one hundred greatest punchers, and ranked number fifty-five on Ring's list of eighty best fighters of the last eighty years.