Sonny Liston

Charles L. „Sonny” Liston (died December 30, 1970) was an American professional boxer known for his toughness, punching power and intimidating appearance. A long-avoided contender, he became world heavyweight champion in 1962 by knocking out Floyd Patterson in the first round, repeating the knockout in a defense of the title. Although widely regarded as unbeatable, Liston lost the title in 1964 to 7–1 underdog Muhammad Ali. Controversy followed with claims he had been drinking heavily the night before the fight. In the rematch Liston suffered a shocking first round knock-out that led to unresolved suspicions of a fix. He was still a world-ranked boxer when he died in mysterious circumstances. Underworld connections—along with his unrecorded date of birth—added to the enigma. The Ring magazine ranked Liston as the seventh greatest heavyweight of all time.

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