On this day in 1932, Charles “Sonny” Liston was born


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Heavyweight boxer Charles “Sonny” Liston was born on May 8, 1932, in St. Francis County, Arkansas. Liston fought his way to boxing fame, becoming the world heavyweight boxing champion in 1962 after knocking out Floyd Patterson in the first round. He would hold the title for the next two years.

Challenger Charles Sonny Liston gives Floyd Patterson a right cross in the first round during the world heavyweight title fight in Chicago, Ill., on Sept. 25, 1962. Seconds later Liston, 28, punched a left hook that knocked out Patterson in 2:06 of the first round. (AP Photo)

In 1964, Liston faced off against a young Muhammad Ali in what was billed as the “fight of the century.” However, Liston was unable to deliver, and Ali won the fight by technical knockout in the seventh round. There was a rematch between Liston and Ali in 1970, but Liston lost.

Former American World Heavyweight Champion Sonny Liston, left, follows through after landing a left to the head of challenger Roger Rischer during their fight at the Civic Centre, Pittsburgh, on Nov. 12, 1968. Liston knocked out Rischer in the third round. (AP Photo)

Liston finished his boxing career with 50 wins and only four losses. He died in 1971 at only 38 years old.

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