Watch the fight that changed the late Ken Norton‘s life. On March 1, 1973, Norton shocked the world when he fought the champion, Muhammad Ali for 12 rounds, leaving him with a bloody, shattered jaw.
“I was taking out the mouthpiece and there was more and more blood on it. My bucket with the water and ice in it became red. In every other fight, between rounds, I’d take the mouthpiece out and put it in the bucket and there was just slobber on it. But here, after each round, I had to shake the mouthpiece to get all the blood out of it into the water.”
Nobody expected Norton to be a worthy opponent for Ali, but by the end of the sixth round, it was clear that Norton not only was winning: he had seriously injured the champ.
After wiring Ali’s jaw shut, Dr. Gary Manchester told the media, “It was a very bad break. The bone which was broken had three or four jagged edges. The edges kept poking into his mouth. He had so much pain during the fight that he’s totally exhausted right now.”