October 2nd, 1980.- On this day in history, Larry Holmes defended his WBC heavyweight crown for the 8th time, defeating the great Muhammad Ali.
Larry Holmes cried in the ring after the fight for administering a beating he didn’t want to unleash.
Holmes felt deep admiration for Ali, as at a young age, The Greatest became his mentor. Larry was one of his main sparring partners.
“He had charisma. He was beautiful and charming. Listen, even after I beat him in our fight in 1980, I went into his dressing room afterwards and he was lying on the bed having a rub-down because he was so sore. And I said, “Ali, you know I love you. You’ve always been my man.” And he said, “If you loved me, why did you beat me up?” But he never held a grudge, even to the day he died. Even when he was sick, whenever I would see him he would fool around and say, “I want Holmes! Get me Holmes!”